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Old Mar 31, 2006, 3:41 PM   #11
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rey wrote:
CDs today are made to be cheap.* More likely it will degrade after a couple of years, depending on the quality of the CD.* The best quality ones will probably last no more than 5 years.* You will know they degraded when you try to read them and your computer can't read them.
I disagree, it's just that you get what you pay, there's lot of landfill group El Cheapos around which shouldn't have gone farther from factory than garbage dumb, those can start to deteriorate in few days and couple months could be good achievement.
But quality medias (expensive ones) work much better.

I have some much older than 5 years old Traxdatas made by Kodak using gold dye... Haven't gone through all of them but what I've checked they're in good condition.

As example I checked one cd burned in July 98 with Nero CD-DVD speed and it gives 93 from 100 as quality points for it, now I haven't checked disc earlier and don't now how much from that is coming from age because there isn't thing as perfect disc, even just burned disc will contain lowest level errors and values over 95 are kept as really good. (even for just burned disc)

Traxdata, date not available (98 or 99): 98
HP burned in Feb 99, same Kodak gold dye if I remember right: 99 points!
Mitsui, gold dye, March 98: 98
Kingtech (non-gold dye, possibly good one), April 00: 97
Lead Data (second class non-gold), somewhere around 00-01 : 98

HP, december 00, carried along in varying temperatures for a year, one circular scratch parallel with data track, scratch causes error spike dropping points to 0, otherwise very good and perfect reading speed curve. (MP3s in "bad" point were perfectly readable)
For low quality media this disc would have been clearly in risk zone after receiving scratch but this high quality media has resisted additional potentially destructive deteriorating for four years and quality of rest of the disc tells that it could well work much much longer if stored well.

Maybe I should select few discs and save scan results for comparing is amount of error increased one year from now.

But I have also kept discs in quite stable 20-25 C temperatures and away from humidity and direct sunlight.
Direct sunlight/hot temperatures and humidity are poison for longevity so in every case avoid those.

Now if you want I could check with some old CD-R containing useless/obsolete data what it would like half hour sauna trip with me. (+90C/195F)

From currently available CD-Rs Plextors (made by Taiyo Yuden) have been clearly on top of others in few tests I've read, Verbatim Data Life Plus is also good.
Then gold dye MAM-E CD-Rs should be very good considering longevity.
But when it comes to prices and amount of photos I myself take I don't consider CD-Rs anymore viable when DVDs have much larger capacity.
From DVD's Verbatims (media identifier MCC, Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation) are one of the best.
Also Taiyo Yuden has started making DVD blancks so those would be other good choise. (Plextor discs have always been made by Taiyo Yuden so go for those if you see them)

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