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Old May 21st, 2003, 10:56 PM   #1
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DVD Corruption Over Time?

Has anyone had problems with dvd-r's corrupting over time? I burned 4 copies of a 90 minute project and tested each one successfully. After sitting on a shelf for three months I replayed them only to find that all four had significantly degraded.

What was interesting was the pattern of the corruption. The begining and end of the documentary played fine. But after the first 10-12 minutes digital noise started appearing, steadily increasing until the disc hung after 30 - 40 minutes.

I'm using Maxell media and a Pioneer AO3. I had stored them in clear cases near a window with a translucent shade, so they did get a fair amount of UV light. Could that have been the problem? How can I keep this from happening again?
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Old May 21st, 2003, 11:05 PM   #2
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IMHO: The life should be decades but UV is a problem, still no way anywhere near the speed you described.
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Old May 22nd, 2003, 07:57 AM   #3
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I agree with Joseph, this should not happen. Did you change
playback devices? If not get a DVD burner to read the discs
(hopefully without any faults) and burn them again. I would
switch DVD recordables if I were you. These discs don't seem
to be trustable!
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Old May 22nd, 2003, 11:31 AM   #4
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Hi.

How about heat? Were the DVDs exposed to direct sunlight?
The heat of sunlight could alter the plastic.
Just a thought.
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Old May 22nd, 2003, 02:51 PM   #5
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I agree with Arnaldo, UV like you all have said degrades the dye in time but if you want to jack a DVD up real quick, heat will warp the plastic ever so slightly, enough not to be seen with our naked eye but enought to alter the way the laser reads the DVD, since the DVD laser is much finer than that of the CD, it is also more sensitive to things of this nature. I would say see if direct or indirect sunlight has exposed the DVD to some heat or maybe if the environmental conditions are subjecting the DVD-R media to heat or even the sudden changes in climate or temperature.
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Old May 22nd, 2003, 11:55 PM   #6
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Well, I can't explain it, but I retested all four DVDs in the same player and they all work fine now. It's hard to believe it was the player, because I tested other DVDs and they worked fine. No idea.

Unexplained problems like these can be so nerve wracking. I'm screening this at the Seattle Art Museum a week from Tuesday, and I can only hope the problem doesn't pop up again right in the middle of it! Especially since I'll be seeing a lot of those people again.

Thanks for all the info guys.
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Old May 23rd, 2003, 06:15 AM   #7
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Hi.

Have you sticked any labels to the DVDs? Labels can give you some problems.

Play the DVDs in a different player. Playing them in another player will help you to isolate the problem and realise if it is related to the player or the DVDs.

Sometimes the laser lens gets covered with a layer of very fine dust leading to reading problems, sometimes the laser can read the disk sometimes not.

To be on the safe side, I would reburn the DVDs again using a diferent brand. Verbatim has worked for me when working with DVD-R.

Other thoughts:
What bit rate are you using when enconding to mpeg2?
Are you using Dolby audio or PCM?
High video bitrates and PCM audio can lead your player into having difficulty in doing the error correction and reading in a erractic way.

Good luck
Arnaldo Paixao
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Old May 23rd, 2003, 06:47 AM   #8
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DVD Corruption Over Time?

I second Arnaldo's concern about paper labels. Two hours before I was to deliver a project I replayed the disks and was horrified at the results after about 40 minutes. I reburned on disks I didn't then label and took both sets with me. Only the unlabeled disks played properly and I've since discovered this is common wisdom among the experienced burning community. In fact, some report problems with printed DVD-Rs if ink coverage is too heavy!

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Old May 25th, 2003, 08:55 AM   #9
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Arnaldo and David, thanks for the great advice about the labels. That could definitely be the problem. I'll make sure to reburn non-labeled discs for the upcoming screening.
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Old May 26th, 2003, 04:08 AM   #10
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Hi Steve.

In fact labels can give you a hard time.
I'v had DVDs wich would play OK without the label and as soon as I put it on, they start to stuter or not play at all.
My advice to my clients (and to you) is not to put labels, but if you have to put them (one of my clients wants labels no mater what), than you must be shure that the label sticks evenly to the DVD and it is precisely centered (a label off center will induce vibration to the DVD and thats when the problem starts). You have to make shure that the label's hole fits taightly into your aplicator, if needed, aply some office tape around the aplicator center.

Good luck on your screening.
Keep us posted.
Arnaldo
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Old May 27th, 2003, 12:18 PM   #11
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I beleive that is what I am seeing as well. Labels on marginal DVD-Rs is a mix of trouble. I now started keeping 2 copies without any labels as masters, then for clients I provide disks with labels. I think newer DVD players are better at dealing with this as well as using good media.
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Old May 30th, 2003, 06:31 AM   #12
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I only write with a special pen on the media. No labels will ever
touch them. Ofcourse a client might demands otherwise. This
could explain the troubles indeed.
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Old June 22nd, 2003, 04:41 PM   #13
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Let me cap this discussion with some empirical evidence...

I burned 7 DVDs of a 90 minute doc. I first played all of them then distributed them to folks requesting copies. Three had lables, four did not. The four with no labels all played without any problems. The three with labels all had problems--increasing levels of digital noise after about 15 minutes, sometimes ending with the disc hanging. The thing is, the problems weren't consistent. Even on the same player, the discs would sometimes play all the way through, other times they would have trouble.

While I don't know what this means from a technical standpoint, for me it seems pretty conclusive that labels are bad news.

It's too bad. Packaging is often important for creating impressions.
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Old June 22nd, 2003, 05:27 PM   #14
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You can get a $199 Epson printer that will print fairly decent labels directly on ink-jet-ready DVD blanks. That might solve the problem.
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Old June 22nd, 2003, 07:35 PM   #15
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That's a nice tip Mike. Has anyone tried these printable DVDs? Are they reliable?
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