January 20, 2006
Dear CNET members,
Two, OK, maybe three years ago, I didn't think I would need a DVD burner and thought that my CD burner would suffice, but as the years went by, I accumulated gigs and gigs of digital photos, music, and videos. So that made a DVD burner a necessity. But back then, I was pretty much on my own to figure out those crazy DVD formats. I wish I'd had the help from our members that we have today. So for all of you who find yourselves ready for or contemplating the possible transition to a DVD burner, Andy's question couldn't have come at a better time. Let's get started with this great winning answer by Barry, followed by many more explanations in the honorable mention and advice from other members sections. And if you have any other questions about DVD formats or burners, post them in our discussion thread. Let's make this discussion worthwhile so that we can demystify those confusing DVD formats and burners (at least until more confusing stuff comes out). We're all here to learn, and your contribution is appreciated by all! Have an awesome weekend!
Member Question of the Week
Hi, I'm going to buy a new DVD player/burner for my computer soon, but I don't know what kind of format to choose. There are burners for DVD-R, DVD+R, DVD-RW, DVD+RW, and even dual-layer ones, and many players that support a combination of the formats. I've also been reading some about DVD-RAM, HD-DVD and Blu-ray--just enough to confuse me more! Can you tell me what the specific difference is between these formats so that I can make the best buying decision for current and future use? Help me, please!
Andy T. of Ogden, Utah
It's best to tackle several categories of DVD media separately, then understand that they get combined to form a whole bunch of different media. The first distinction is + media vs. - media. These two classes of DVD media, developed separately by different groups of engineers, are conceptually the same from an end user's perspective, but internally they are made differently, and they work differently. What you need to know is that they are different, and that you cannot automatically assume...
Barry W. of North Canton, Ohio
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Each week we take a look at topics discussed in the forums.
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Check out next week's question:
I recently read an article by a data storage expert who claimed that burned CD-Rs and CD-RWs can be expected to last only two to five years and not a whole lot more. I personally have commercially pressed CDs from the 1980s that still play fine, but I have begun to notice that some of my burned CD-Rs are beginning to skip, or not start (player shows "no disc"), or have a strange echo that was not on the original. This sounds serious! The expert suggests that for secure long-term storage, high -quality magnetic tape is the way to go. Are any of your readers beginning to notice this problem with their burned CDs, and are there other opinions about how to combat it? Are some burnable CDs of higher quality than others? What are the best storage methods for the discs that will make them last longest?
Carl N. of Cottonwood, AZ
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August 15, 2005
|About me: About me: I love all things to do with technology. I am always the first one among my group of friends to know about... (read more)
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