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Which blank DVD media?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by unitron, Oct 19, 2013.

  1. unitron

    unitron Active Member

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    After I figure out how to take .tivo files on the PC and use its DVD deck to burn them to DVD (playable in your average DVD player), I still need to know whether to use +R or -R and which version of which brand.

    Discussions of this at places like avsforum seem at least a year old and that's plenty of time for those who put their brand name on blanks to change who makes them for them, so I'm seeking recently informed opinion.

    Keep in mind that I really have no experience with DVD's, even commercially produced ones.

    Don't have a player except the ones in PCs around here and never even sat down and watched one.
     
  2. CoxInPHX

    CoxInPHX COX Communications

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  3. jcthorne

    jcthorne Active Member

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    You really need to consider other technology before reducing the resolution of your recordings to fit on outdated media that will fail in a few years. An electronic storage media will last far longer and enable you to keep the full resolution of the recordings. Suggest looking at a small file server. If you wish to share a recording with someone else, a thumb drive works well.
     
  4. unitron

    unitron Active Member

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    We're talking about shows off of analog cable on the S2 DT I set up for my mom (with 2 1TB drives) that she wants copied for my niece before she'll delete them from the TiVo to free up some of that 2TB of space that's almost completely used, even though I've copied them over to a PC that I set up just for the purpose of saving the shows elsewhere so that she can record new stuff on the TiVo.

    Now, if you have informed opinion on the relative merits of +R and -R DVD blanks, or the relative quality of the various versions from the various brands...
     
  5. steve614

    steve614 what ru lookin at?

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    I don't know the difference between +R and -R, but in my experience I have had far more trouble with +R not playing on some stand alone DVD players after they are burned. Also, if the DVD player you plan to play them on is an older model, +R may not be compatible with it.
    I mostly use Dual Layer DVDs and it is hard to find -R in dual layer in B&M stores, so I just go with the +R DLs.
    Since your source is SD, dual layer may not matter as much to you other than for being able to put more data on the disk. You may not even have a dual layer burner, which you would need if want to burn DL (obviously).

    Having said that, the brand that has given me the least trouble is Verbatim.
     
  6. unitron

    unitron Active Member

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    How many hours of SD can you fit onto what?
     
  7. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    DVD-R has been around longer and is compatible with more players. If you have a relatively recent model DVD player then either format will be compatible. The DVD+R format introduced a few features not available on DVD-R discs.

    According to the claims of the DVD Alliance, using a DVD+R/+RW recorder will let you do the following:

    1. Instantly eject without having to wait for finalized formatting.

    2. Ability to record one DVD disc partially on PC and partially on television.

    3. Background formatting: while the disc is being formatted, you can simultaneously record on already-formatted portions of the same disc.

    4. Enhanced ability to edit filenames, movie and song titles, and playlists.

    5. 100% compatibility with all other DVD players, while still enjoying these extra recording features.

    Note that the DVD-R format is the only one officially approved by the DVD Standards Group.

    I personally prefer the DVD-R format because I've had compatibility issues with DVD+R discs in the past. I second the recommendation for Taiyo Yuden blank media as it is consistently the best available.
     
  8. gonzotek

    gonzotek tivo_xml developer

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    Outside...
    You'll need to consider the player they'll be used on. In my experience, some players will work better with one format(e.g. DVD+R), and yet others will work better with the opposite format. And some (mostly older) players don't like to work with burned discs whatsoever. So it's best to check first. When it's something I can't physically check myself, I'll burn a copy on each type of disc and ask the other person to let me know which worked for them. Once you've found out what works, stick with it. :)
     
  9. ajwees41

    ajwees41 Active Member

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    What gonzotek said it depends on what format the dvd player you want to watch it accepts.
     
  10. unitron

    unitron Active Member

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    Well, see, there's the problem, or one of them.

    I have no idea what these will be played back on.

    Might be a DVD player connected to a TV, might be a Mac laptop, might be one of those things designed to ride around in a car, or any combination of the above.

    I'm reasonably certain whatever hardware is used won't be more than say 5 years old, but that's about it.
     
  11. steve614

    steve614 what ru lookin at?

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    That can vary. It depends on how much quality you want to keep as the DVD authoring software can compress the data to fit the disk. The more you put on a disk, the picture quality suffers.

    It's a judgment call between quality and quantity that only you can make.
    You just have to look at the file size of what you want to burn and decide.
    A standard blank disk will hold 4.7GB of data.
    For comparison, a 30 minute show episode from an S2 is around 915MB, so you could put 5 episodes on a disk without any compression. That comes to about 2.5 hours give or take a few minutes (obviously).

    I would just go with -R and be done with that, as that format will be the most compatible with whatever equipment it will be played back on.
     
  12. WO312

    WO312 Active Member

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    Finger...
    I've always used TDK +R. Never had a problem.
     
  13. mattack

    mattack Active Member

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    Are these intended to be "permanent"?

    written dvds are degradable.. (I say that, even though I used to burn a whole ton of DVDs)

    I'd suggest keeping the computer hard drive copies too (including backups maybe), if you intend to keep these a very long time.
     
  14. unitron

    unitron Active Member

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    Not permanent permanent.

    A year or two should be fine, I can keep them backed up on PC if I need to burn them again.

    But once I get started burning DVDs, who knows where that will lead, so I figure I should only have really good blanks around.
     
  15. lessd

    lessd Active Member

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    I have DVD RW for over 5 years without having any problems using them in DVD players.
     
  16. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    I bought a lot of DVD-RW discs when they first came out and most of them are now unplayable. They do deteriorate over time. OTOH, current dyes used in these types of rewriteable discs are probably more robust than the early versions so they should last much longer.

    If you're unsure what type of player will be used for recordable disc playback, stick with -R discs as they are almost universally compatible. The only type of discs I've ever had playback issues with are the +R format. Every time I've bought a DVD made by someone else for one of my kid's music pageants and the like were always made on +R discs and I always ended up having to re-rip them on a PC DVD-ROM drive and copy them to -R blank discs.
     
  17. HerronScott

    HerronScott Well-Known Member

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    I'll toss out a positive for +R. At one time I was saving a lot of TV shows from my TiVo and PC capture card to DVD and never had a problem with them playing on our DVD or later BluRay player (both Sony) or any that I gave to my brother (Panasonic and Sony players).

    My guess is that any of the issues with any early incompatibility from years ago is a non-issue today (and most of my bulk burning was 3-5 years ago).

    Scott
     
  18. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Active Member

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    Ellicott...
    It's only a non-issue if you have a late model DVD player. Lots of people, like myself, still use older players that are partial to -R discs and won't play +R DVDs.

    DVD-R discs are universally playable in just about every player in existence. I haven't heard of any particular models that won't play them, but I wouldn't be surprised if there were a few off-brands that don't adhere the the standard. Finding a compatible player for +R discs may still be hit or miss.

    If you're recording the DVDs for personal use and your player works with +R discs, then get whatever blanks you can find the best deal on. If you're recording for other people then -R discs are your best bet to ensure compatibility.
     
  19. christheman

    christheman New Member

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    Interesting enough. I have heard of higher end audio CD players not having all the possible variants of codecs available as say a cheap Sony, but that was a while ago.

    Furthermore the only issues between +R and -R were supposed to be in the recording of the discs, but the playback was supposed to be transparent.

    One more plus with the +R DVD format is supposedly a newer form of error correction.

    In my case, I use Verbatim AZO +R DVDs. The "AZO" is their best. It sells for about half of what equivalent Taiyo Yuden SL discs cost and is available in my local computer stores. I use both the SL and DL Verbatim AZO discs, depending on my needs.

    I use recent model LG DVD/CD writers, the outboard units which are also capable of writing "M-Disc" specifications. They are the larger outboard USB units which have motorized trays, not the cheapo lightweight USB units that are just repackaged laptop drives. These units sell for about $60 at my local computer store. I use them on my computers to make master copies, and also on stand-alone duplicators (the same exact LG M-Disc units, but just the PC tower-mountable version - not the USB stand alones).

    Using this combination of goods, I have been able to produce many many SL and DL +R DVDs that can play on old cheapo DVD players I bought from Walmart back circa 2004. In addition, I have received no complaints from anyone.

    I should probably mention that every single DVD I write gets an additional verification pass, both with the PCs and with the stand-alone duplicators, as there will sometimes be coasters dead upon arrival even among the good Verbatim AZO SL DVDs. Usually happens in groups of 2-3, you can visually see the defects as small asymmetrical discolored spots on the recorded side. However, these are not very common and once these are ruled out, then I am good to go.

    Also I am particular about how I store them. I am adamantly opposed to using anything other than Case Logic binders. In the past I noticed that a newer TekNmotion binder I had was scuffing my Taiyo Yuden discs which I was using at the time. I tested this in the store with other TekNmotion binders and had perfectly repeatable results. I discovered this only by chance, they were many very fine scuffs, only visible under a bright LED reading lamp, but I was surprised to see any at all. This happened with only a couple insertions into the jacket with a fresh Taiyo Yuden DVD. I have never seen this with Case Logic binders on either Taiyo Yuden or Verbatim discs.

    Finally I always store my discs in a dark cool dry place (Case Logic binders in a non-humid cool dry area, away from any sunlight). Despite what experiences some of the others on this forum report, I can testify that they indeed last for a verry long time.
     
  20. christheman

    christheman New Member

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    I use compression, but very lightly. The rule of thumb for me is two hours or less of SD video written to a SL DVD (from Tivo at highest SD resolution) equals 720x480 or traditional DVD specification. At two hours or more, or a higher action or more highly detailed video, I will automatically switch to using DL DVDs. I prefer SL DVDs to DL only because I can get them for about 1/4 of the price per disc.

    I usually use VideoRedo to process the video files into DVD files, including correcting audio offset - which would apply to everyone, even those who don't want to use DVDs.

    The DVD-specific part is simply this: If it is two hours or less of video content, then either just write it to the SL DVD if it will fit, or compress it if I need to up to 2 hours. Another thing I look at is actual data size. Since a normal SL DVD can hold about 4.7 GB (or 4.35 GB, depending on which number you read), I will compress up to about a 5.5 GB video source. (smaller number) That is choppinng off roughly up to 1 GB. Beyond that I will just use DL DVDs to maintain a decent video resolution. 6 GB video source automatically goes uncompressed to a DL DVD. I arrived at these figures through much experimentation.

    I use DVD Shrink 3.2 (the last OFFICIAL version and it's free - you should NEVER have to pay for it!!) to do the actual compression. It is quick and I am happy with the results (following my above guidelines, which would minimize any introduced compromises). I use the Deep Analysis and Sharpest resolution under the Enhanced Compression settings, which is good for most content.

    Hope that helps.
     

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