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Audio CD-R vs. Reg'lar CD-R

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  • Audio CD-R vs. Reg'lar CD-R

    Apropos of nothing:

    Does anyone know if there is any REAL difference between Audio CD-Rs and 'Regular' CD-Rs?

    All of the CD-Rs I have made are on the 'Regualr' ones, and they sound fine.

    Just yesterday, I bought some of the 'Music' CD-Rs, and I can't tell the difference between 'em!

    Unless one has to have a $$$ music system, in order to notice . . .
    Madness is always the best armor against Reality

  • #2
    It depends what you are trying to do. And I think in some countries there is an additional tax on the "audio" type of blank CD-R media.

    I always buy 50 packs of blank data style TDKs. Short of gold archival style disks which usually run $1-2 USD each (Kodak used to make some), TDKs are so far the best deal. They seem to have decent longevity for me so far.

    Be sure to keep your disks in a cool, dry, and dark place unless you consider them disposable. Anything that will accelerate oxidation must be avoided. Anything that will physically mar either surface of the disk should be avoided. Some people won't even use Sharpies to label a disk, but I do - but I always use just Sharpies (soft-tipped permanent ink markers).

    Anyway, if you're just making disks for your portable or your car stereo - I wouldn't worry about any of this. At the present cost of the disks, they are practically disposable.

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    • #3
      Are TDKs better than Fujis?

      I guess you would have to have tried Fuji to know)
      \"Bush\'s army of barmy bigots is the worst thing that\'s happened to the US in some years...\"
      Michael Moorcock - 3am Magazine Interview

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      • #4
        I like the Fujis okay, but I've heard nasty stuff about practically all brands. But somehow TDKs are more often talked of in a positive light.

        The main thing is that CDs, and esp. CD-Rs, are not nearly as indestructable as was once ballyhooed - they must be treated with some amount of respect. The media is also susceptible to oxidation and fungus.



        I had a friend show me such a disk once - he'd been in the Amazon region - and I immediately suggested he quarantine the disk. If your data gets eaten up, you got dick - or a 'coaster' as it is said.

        This is why I now put my money in redundant removable hard drives...and I am considering a RAID, but I can't decide if that is overdoing it or not. I never want to have to rebuild my MP3 collection. I don't mind making it better, but to start from scratch again might defeat me.

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        • #5
          yeah that would suck!
          \"Bush\'s army of barmy bigots is the worst thing that\'s happened to the US in some years...\"
          Michael Moorcock - 3am Magazine Interview

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          • #6
            Audio CD's have more groove(s), didn't you know?
            Google ergo sum

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            • #7
              Originally posted by krunky
              This is why I now put my money in redundant removable hard drives...and I am considering a RAID, but I can't decide if that is overdoing it or not.
              I feel so bad for all the people who bought those crappy iOmega Zip and Jaz Disk drives. Bad, bad storage medium! Atrocious!

              I prefer TDK as well, although I have had no problems with the Fuji CDs I've used.

              Just don't go all cheapo. Fact is, you can get a brand of CD-Rs called "SmartBuy" for around 30 cents a piece, but do you want to trust your data to them?
              "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
              --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars

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              • #8
                Anyone want a SyQuest drive?

                I have one here collecting dust...

                :roll:
                \"Bush\'s army of barmy bigots is the worst thing that\'s happened to the US in some years...\"
                Michael Moorcock - 3am Magazine Interview

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                • #9
                  There used to be many years ago a rumour amongst audiophiles that using green ink on your CDs resulted in a better sound, which as a friend of mine once posted said 'only if it was an incredibly clever shade of green that could decode digital information, enhance the sound, and then re-encode it'. Basically in terms of sound, cheap discs and expensive discs will sound exactly the same, as they're holding the same digital information.

                  Some people will then bring up error-correction (you used to see it mentioned quite a bit in CD player reviews) as if it was something you can hear (when ironically it is something you can physically measure for any disc).

                  Anyway, the main difference between cheap and expensive CD-Rs is simply reliability - I use cheapo unbranded CDs quite a lot and the failure rate is distinctly higher than on branded discs (although the failure is usually at burn time - I've not, as yet, come back to a disk and found it's lost data).

                  On the other hand I use them mostly for archiving (so they sit in a nice dark folder), or making compilation disks for people.

                  The ones I really like are those CD-Retro ones - they're done like old 45's, right down to a printed 'groove' on the top and old record label style centre.

                  My usual solution for CDs that don't play - softly going over the 'play' (not label) side with cotton buds and a high alcohol solution (usually skin toner).

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                  • #10
                    Thanks for the answers :D

                    Mostly, I just make backups for my CD collection, to play in my car. It's also easier to loan somebody a CD-R than the original CD!

                    The ones I have normally bought are Memorex, which have worked well so far. The audio discs I bought are Sony, and, as I said, I can't reall tell the difference between the two types.
                    Madness is always the best armor against Reality

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                    • #11
                      I think burn failure rate has more to do with the burner than the disk. I haven't yet gone in for a Plextor, but I like my old Sony burner pretty well. Next best is a Samsung, and last is a pair of HP generic whatever the hell they ares. One of the HPs burns DVDs, which I am still learning about.

                      [Digression: Generally I think name brand computers are shit. I certainly hate the ones I have. And while I was recently impressed by a Sony VAIO I saw recently (hardware looked great! Very tidy.) it doesn't come with any disks - it forces you to burn your own recovery disks. That also means it will format your drive if you partitioned it - I learned that the hard way with my HPs. You also do not have an OS disk, nor any needed drivers in case you wanted to do something other than WinXP. Which I am not sure I understand - you pay for XP, but you don't have recourse to a disk? Is that a new kind of vaporware? You bought it, but it isn't tangible?]

                      The Sony almost never burns a coaster, no matter the brand of media used. That's what leads me to believe it is more a matter of the burner. The Sony is from around 2000, so it doesn't even have all the fancy burn-proof features one sometimes hears about (cache overrun protection).

                      What I have learned to do in terms of archiving is either redundancy (best solution) or at least to check the item I think is an "archive" by opening some files and seeing if they do what they should: if an image file, I preview it; if an MP3 I listen to a few seconds; if text I read a bit. Doesn't take long and it's better safe than sorry. I just spot check some files here and there.

                      I have made the mistake of assuming a burn went well, deleted the now duplicated material from the hard drive, and then later discovered the disk was toast and unreadable for whatever reason.

                      Which is my other thing - I always burn in one session and close the session.

                      And I have learned to not use CD-RW for anything - I have lost data that way also and it's just not worth it.

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                      • #12
                        Dude, krunky, I could have written that post. I agree on all counts.

                        I will say that extremely cheap CDs -- such as the afore-mentioned SmartBuy brand -- can actually lose backing on the CD (making labels a cost-balancing necessity). If the backing is compromised, as you know, the CD is unreadable. 48x drives tend to wobble these cheaper CDs, damaging the backing.

                        Originally posted by krunky
                        I was recently impressed by a Sony VAIO I saw recently (hardware looked great! Very tidy.) it doesn't come with any disks - it forces you to burn your own recovery disks.
                        I have an old VAIO PIII/750 at home which did come with recovery disks, but I bought it years ago. Wouldn't surprise me if Sony stopped providing them nowadays. Thing is, the computer is so solid, I haven't needed the recovery disks. It's been a great workhorse machine.

                        Redundancy. Close your sessions. CD-RW = NO. All great points.

                        Here's a question: What happens when you try to burn data to a "Music" CD-R? I've never bought CD-Rs specifically designated as Music CD-Rs.
                        "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
                        --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          PWV:

                          If you're asking me, I have no idea. I think they're intended for those stand alone Philips units that you can connect to your stereo or something. I am guessing they have some kind of formatting pre-burned, as if to announce to the hardware device that it is an "audio" disk. Something like that I expect.

                          Anyway, I stick with the 100% computer solutions. Eventually the computer really will be your one-stop device for all media: video-telephone, TV, DVD, CD, MP3, etc...

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                          • #14
                            I don't think there's any special formatting on the audio CD-R's (I've put data on them) - just a bit of branding - and maybe they're meant to be more compatible with non-PC CD players.

                            Recovery discs : as I discovered the hard way with my wife's laptop, it seems standard now to just ship image discs with new PCs. I expect it is something to do with OEM licensing.

                            I do know that her XP is missing certain features such as the Recovery Console, which meant that following a corruption of the O/S caused by a Windows Update crashing, the only thing to do was wipe the whole drive, losing all her data. (Luckily that mostly meant saved games).

                            The guy on the support desk was almost embarassed by this, and basically asked if I had access to 'a copy of XP'!!

                            So following that then had to go through the pain of several hours worth of downloaded updates for XP and Office, upon which I promptly bought Norton Ghost, and made a full backup of the system with everything installed but not used.

                            What I can't believe is that not only are suppliers not shipping O/S discs but that MS removed the back-up utility that existed on Windows ME, and only ship it as part of XP Pro now. Yep, we're going to ship a whole load of stuff you don't need like Messenger, Media Player, Movie Maker, but remove necessary features of any computer system. Apparently they removed some 'non-consumer' features from the O/S to avoid confusing the non-technical. Next : the car with no way to top up the oil?

                            Not got a DVD burner on the PC, but I have got a DVD recorder, which I've transferred various old VHS tapes onto.

                            On a related note :

                            http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/3872717.stm

                            Me, I'd start looking around for employees showing evidence of being overpaid.

                            And if that wasn't enough, the Tatoosh -- named after a Makah Indian chief -- isn't even Paul Allen's biggest yacht.
                            It's only 305 feet long. That is to say, slightly longer than a football field. It has just two helicopter pads, only one swimming pool and a full-time crew of barely 30. It is said to have cost a mere $100 million.
                            http://www.portlandtribune.com/archview.cgi?id=20937

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                            • #15
                              You ever tested a Ghost backup, Jules? I have had an enormous failure rate with most backups solutions. Taking a perfect image would seem like an easy thing to do, but apparently it is not...

                              For fun - format your c drive and see if the ghost backup actually works!

                              =)

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