Bride Keeps Damaging DVD's... and blaming ME! at DVinfo.net

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Old August 29th, 2007, 03:34 PM   #1
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Bride Keeps Damaging DVD's... and blaming ME!

Never had this problem before... and I'd be interested in some help!

For a recent wedding I burned the brides videos on to Datasafe DVD+R Dual Layer Discs with my Apple Mac Pro at 2.4x speed. Reason being she wanted hugely detailed coverage, so the final product was 3 hours and fifteen minutes with a detailed index. As always, I tested the discs before sending them off... no problems.

Two weeks later the bride returns two of the three discs saying they played fine the first time, but kept skipping at about half an hour in whenever she played them again. I examined the discs and sure enough there were some scratches, fingerprints etc. So, I pointed it out to her, explained that she needed to take care of her discs and burned a couple of replacement discs.

That was two weeks ago. Tonight she calls with exactly the same problem... played once, then next time started skipping. She tried them on another DVD player and it won't play them either. The basic tone of the conversation was... it's my fault, my discs are faulty. I'm fed-up about this because I really put a lot of work into that wedding and went out of my way to accomodate her requests.

I've used these discs before, and no problem. I'm sure she's just not looking after them.

Now I'm having doubts... and here they are...

1. Are Dual Layer dvd's inclined to cause more problems in general, are they too delicate?

2. Should I be using DVD-R DL instead of +R?

3. Are DVD's burned on PC/Macs more susceptible to scratches and marks than mass produced discs you buy off the shelf?

4. Am I using a crappy brand... Is there a brand of dual layer DVD that everyone agrees is superior?

Thanks in advance guys!
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Old August 29th, 2007, 03:43 PM   #2
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I'm not burning dual-layer DVDs at work, but I have had a similar problem with people complaining about the DVDs we give them not working. Through trial and error I've learned to stay away from all +R DVDs and anything made by Maxell, Verbatim and Ritek. That's just based on the experience I've had with them though.

I usually try to stick with Fuji when making DVD-R discs for people. They have had the best success rate out of all the other discs we've tried. I can't answer any of your other questions, but it wouldn't surprise me if dual layer DVDs were more prone to problems than standard DVDs are.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 03:54 PM   #3
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Thanks John.

I'm going to try burning the discs again onto -R Sony dvd's... see if it makes any difference.

What's bugging me is the whole, "Played fine the first time, won't play any more", coupled with the marks on the discs. I get the feeling I could pay Universal Studios a couple of million to reshoot the wedding, and press the DVD's for me... and she'd still bring them back damaged!!
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Old August 29th, 2007, 04:08 PM   #4
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I work for a private college, and so we duplicate videos like crazy. we have found that if we burn a "master" copy and try it in multiple dvd players it has less luck then when we make duplicates of the "master" in our telex spinwise duplication tower. something about the duplicate tower that changes how things are read in dvd players that makes them work so much better. this might be just something exclusive to our setup but since we've been using the tower we have had no complaints.

as to dual layer disc....we have a dual layer duplication tower as well and we have a few complaints of them working. Basically we have found out that not too many dvd players on the market really like reading burned dual layers...whether its +R or -R....BUT always use -R (much more universal)
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Old August 29th, 2007, 04:14 PM   #5
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Thanks Zach.

-R seems to be a better option ok.

So, do you folks avoid dual layer at all costs? Would you go so far as to recommend burning two single layer discs instead?
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Old August 29th, 2007, 04:22 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Sean Kiely View Post
So, do you folks avoid dual layer at all costs? Would you go so far as to recommend burning two single layer discs instead?
I avoid them like the plague. Burners and players are fickle enough the way it is with single layered media.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 04:48 PM   #7
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So, do you folks avoid dual layer at all costs? Would you go so far as to recommend burning two single layer discs instead?
Yes, absolutely. And my guess is that it should be fairly easy to break up a wedding video into two sets of tracks, each set on its on single layer DVD.

I have heard nothing but bad experience with playing dual layer discs in standard DVD players, not counting of course the "real" (i.e. replicated) DVDs.

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Old August 29th, 2007, 04:50 PM   #8
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Not to reinvent the wheel but perhaps you could break the time up onto two disks and save the hassle. I never use +R and have heard of other people having problems with them. A photographer we just shot with gave the B&G their photos on +R and it won't play at all for them. If you reburn them yoiu might suggest that if it comes back scratched you won't replace them free of charge anymore. Also are you getting the old ones back. I had a couple come to me three times for skipping errors and later found out they gave the other discs to parents. Which is funny cause we tell them they can burn them, just don't sell them.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 04:54 PM   #9
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So, do you folks avoid dual layer at all costs? Would you go so far as to recommend burning two single layer discs instead?
Yup, here too. DL = double layer of trouble.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 05:18 PM   #10
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I think I'll try a -R disc first.

If that doesn't work I'll have to split it.

But that's it. She'll have to look after the discs, or pay me for more.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 05:24 PM   #11
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Yup, -R for Macs for sure. I don't do dual layer for a lot of the reasons expressed.

As for brands, I have to say that generally, Verbatim have a very good rep for Macs; I've had good success with them as have many others. Mind you, I also have had great success with TDK and many people hate them.

I just went through a 50 spindle of Riotek ink jet printables without a dud in the bunch. I have found Maxell to be spotty. Only use Sony a few times (supplied by clients) with good results but not enough fro a true case study.

Definitely stay away from the off brand cheapo stuff and I would avoid the ones labelled "Kodak"

As for your issues with the bride, I think it may be time to cut your losses. In a similar situation, I went to the clients' house, played the disk in every machine they had (it was an hour long project and I took time to play it entire on one machine and spot checked it on the others) When they agreed that it played, I made them sign a statement declaring so. Let them know, I can't be responsible for what they do with their own property ... they bought it, it ain't mine no more. Left them cleaning supplies and an instruction sheet for proper disk care


Know what? Got a refferal a year later. Go figger
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Old August 29th, 2007, 05:33 PM   #12
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I like that... going to the house and the cleaning kit... then a referral!

It's really funny you just posted that, because here's the STRANGE thing... this brides sister just phoned... wants to book me for her wedding!

Like you said... go figger!
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Old August 29th, 2007, 07:53 PM   #13
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Dual Layer Disc's are not compatible with all DVD players out there keep away from them i say

You can get 1hr 30min on a DVD at very good quality but never use +r always use -r they are more compatible.


Section from one of Ken Stone's Articles

For the best quality, set Encode Mode to Two Pass VBR. The Bit Rate setting will depend upon how long your video is: for less than 60 minutes, set Bit rate to 6.8 Mbps, for 60-90 min, use 5 Mbps, for 90-12 min, use 3.5 Mbps. Set Max Bit rate to 7.5 Mbps, and Motion Estimation to Best. Set Encoding Mode to Encode to Background encoding to encode your video to MPEG-2 while you work, or Encode on build to encode just before burning a DVD.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 07:54 PM   #14
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i have never ever had a problem with TDK DVD-r

they have been fantastic for me

regards

Rob
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Old August 29th, 2007, 08:05 PM   #15
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I use +R for one thing only:

backing up files/footage/whatever that will be burned in my machine and will be read back in the same machine. Not for distribution.

All this talk of dual layer is helpful and convinces me I guessed right on a recent job (for a change): had about 69 mins. of a performance, almost all of which had to appear in the final cut. I considered dual layer, but that definitely would have created a problem for the client, who burns hundreds of extra copies for their members and benefactors. I cut the obviously useless stuff, but after that, I was literally shaving frames one-at-a-time, using short & fast transitions, and overlapping audio to squeeze out every fraction of time I could, all to avoid dual layer. Just putting finishing touches on it tonight. Based on everyone's rec's, I seem to have made the right decision. (Now, if I could only convince that client to give me the copy work, too).

Thanks.
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