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scratch proof optical disks

Last response: in Storage
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January 22, 2006 3:13:42 AM

Just read the new article re the scratch proof optical disks. Neat invention.

However I have been using an optical disk that is even more scratch proof than that for years.

Its called DVD-RAM and its scratch resistant because the disk is in a protective cartridge.

The cartridge is an even better form of protection invented decades earlier, and used in such items as audio casettes, video casettes, 3 1/2 inch floppy disks, MO disks, etc.. The list is endless.

If the standard CD and DVD optical disks had not been the victim of a marketing genius who invented the scratchable (unprotected) disk to improve profit margins, we might not need this latest invention.

Its an improvement on naked disks, but doesnt come close to a proper cartridge/caddy protected disk. Not even close.

:roll: :roll: :roll:
January 24, 2006 4:22:36 PM

Right, cause I love it when those flimsy flaps that cover the one opening get bent, jamming in my machine, and forcing me to tear the thing apart and try to not void my warranty in the process. Or that I would need 20 feet of shelf space to hold what I can jsut toss in a binder right now. Or that I really do want to pay $5 a disc, when I can only pay $0.50 for something that works 90% as well.

There is a reason why the cartidge was removed as a storage medium...
January 24, 2006 11:05:59 PM

I have never experienced the problem with the flaps. They are perhaps relatively flimsy, but then they are not usually required to sustain any direct force. I handle the disks by the base and have never had to touch the flaps, except out of interest to view the disks. I have as yet had not a single problem with a DVD-RAM disk in a cartdridge - I wish I could say the same about DVD-+R(W) disks.

I have never as yet dropped a DVD-RAM disk, and I suppose that could damage the flap if it landed awkwardly, but then the disks are removeable and you can replace the cartridge. A similar serious fall of a naked disk would likely damage the disk beyond any form of repair. At least in the case of the DVD-RAM it would be the cartridge that is damaged not the disk. In my mind that is definately an advantage for the cartdridge.

I suppose a drive could damage the flap, but then the solution is to get the drive repaired. If all DVD-RAM drives damaged disks or trapped them in the drive then this would of course put the DVD-RAM disk at a serious disadvantage, but clearly this cannot be the case since I have never had a failure with my drive. What make of drive are you using? Perhaps you had a dud.

The shelf space does not apply to the situation with disks in jewel cases, but you have mentioned the binders. In my experience you wont have to pull them in and out too many times before they are scratched beyond use. They might take up less space but thats not much consolation as you chuck them in the bin. I also find it very difficult to pull them in and out without eventially dropping them - another problem I have never had with DVD-RAM's.

The cost factor is certainly an issue, but then price is driven almost entirely by manufacturing scale. DVD-RAM's are expensive not because the technology is intrinsicallt more expensive to manufacture, but because they are less popular and made in much smaller quantity. Had the market standardised on DVD-RAM instead of the crappy minus and plus, they would eb about the same price. Of course the cartrdges will add something to the cost, but I cannot see why the cartidge should cost more than a jewel case.

The plastic binders also cost money, but since they offer little or no protection for the vulnerable disks, they don't really figure in the comparison.

As regards protection I have not mention DVD-RAMs other advantage, namely dust and fingerprint protection. Those little bumps on the disks do diddly squat to stop dust.

In addition to the protection advantages, DVD-RAMS also have numerous other advantages.

They rewrite 100,000 times rather than 1000.

DVD-RAMS can also be used like hard disks - you dont need to use these absurd burn utilities to put data on them. They also read back reliably - I have never had a read error - not a single one using DVD-RAMs, but I have had numerous failures of other disks, including pressed DVD's.

Also I suggest you go talk to movie rental establishments about the durability of naked optical disks. My local rental shop says they get far better life from a video casette than a DVD disk. I was not able to rent - EVER - a DVD movie that would play without at least one major pixel crisis or missing scene.
January 24, 2006 11:30:23 PM

I just realised I did not read you rpost properly.

Re the bent flaps - I strongly suggest you do not put any damaged disks in a drive. What can you expect to happen? Same thing if you put a warped naked disk in a drive. Most drive mechanisms can be damaged by inserting damaged media.

Also, why are the flaps getting bent? Are you leaving the disks lying around on desks and perhaps allowing heavy objects to be put on top of them.

Re the price, in addition to my previous comments they are expensive also as they are targetted at professionals who need highly reliable media, and they charge what the market will bear. Users such as businesses who have valuable data will pay a lot to protect it. None of these people (unless they are stupid) would put valuable data on a naked disk, unless they are very short of money.

Were DVD-RAMS to be targetted towards ordinary users the price would come down. Of course the industry has found a better solution. Sell the good reliable tech to business at a premium price (DVD-RAM) and sell the unrpotected crap to the poor punters who cannot afford anything else.

Me I willingly pay for waulity when I have the money. The rest of the time I use cheap naked disks and curse when they frequently get damaged and stop working.

As to the little bumpy disks - save the money and just put them in the protective jewel case when not using them rather than tossing them on a desk. Simple, neat, and cheaper. And those little bumps are going to do zip when you drop a heavy book on them!
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