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Choosing the Right Media

CD-R, DVD DL, DVD-RHawksM21 April 2011

Making the Right Decision: Guide to the Best Duplication Service for You
If you’re not quite at the stage of being able to do all your duplication projects in house, you may have to consider farming out some or all of the job. But how do you make the right decision for you? First you need to consider all the elements of your project; that way when you’re approaching a potential vendor, you’ll be armed with the knowledge to answer their questions. We’ll break it down, step-by-step to help you approach this decision.

Choosing the Media
For music and other audio files, you’re better off selecting a recordable CD than a DVD. For larger, more complex projects with more data or those that incorporate video, the ideal choice is DVD. But if you have a very large project or for a project that demands the highest quality, you might need to delve into the Blu-ray category. In terms of cost, each medium will go up in price respectively.

Deciding whether to go with a standard template or a customizable one will be dependent on the client’s needs or the purpose of the project. If marketing a unique product, you probably want to consider the customized option. You’ll also want to take into account your timeframe and cost; which will each increase exponentially the slimmer your requirements are. Thinking about how your project will be distributed and to whom is also key; snail mail projects may demand simpler and slimmer packaging, while on-demand, hand distributed projects afford you a little bit more creative freedom and room to go more bulky with your packaging.

You’ll be presented with a variety of options to choose from:
- covers/booklets/inserts – the more complex the cover, the more complex the case
- sleeves (cardboard) – ideal for easy shipping
- cases (plastic and jewel) – offer the option to showcase disc or cover artwork
- bulk wrap – an affordable option for large scale and/or widely distributed projects

Print Style
Matte, high-gloss, full color, black and white… there are so many options. High-gloss will look the most professional, but is that the look you’re going for? Are you printing images or text only? Do you want to use silkscreen printing — best for spot color printing —or offset printing — used for photographs and full-color prints? Answering these types of questions will determine where you go with your project.

Duplication vs. Replication
You’ll need to take into account the three most relevant factors: size of your order, your budget, and your deadline. Duplication is ideal for projects with a run order size of 100 to 500 with a 3-5 day turn around time. The cost will go up as volume increases. Replication is most often used for a mass production project up to one million discs, because instead of making a copy from a burner drive, replication services make a master “mold” of your original disc and stamps the copied information onto the new discs. The turn-around time is longer, 10-15 days, and comes with a lower cost-per-disc ration.

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What Shelf Life to Expect from Your DVDs

DVD-RHawksM13 April 2011

At Gotmedia we’re all about providing our customers not only with the highest quality products and service, but we like to throw in some industry and product information for good measure. Today we’re going to look at the longevity or shelf life of a DVD product.

The Gist

With record keeping and memory saving transitioned, in most part, to the digital realm, it’s more important than ever to be aware of potential deterioration of the medium you’re using to store data and the risks of data loss or damage.

Unfortunately, when it comes to DVD data storage, there’s no catchall answer for how long your DVD will last. Your DVD’s ability to stand the test of time relies on quite a few factors, including:

- The quality of the DVDs manufacturing process
- The quality of the conditions the DVD is stored in
- The material used to make the DVD

For instance, extreme heat and humidity can create hazardous storing conditions for your DVD, as well as the sensitivity of the top surface of the DVD, which is where your data is actually stored. While most discs are manufactured with a silver material, studies have shown that a “gold” brand may last longer. Specifically, the MAM-A Gold DVD lasts upwards of 2,200 hours, compared to its silver competitor, which lasts just 1,300 hours. And, discs that use cyanine dye tend to deteriorate quicker.

What you can do to make your disc last

We don’t just give you the facts; we want to arm you with the knowledge to make informed decisions. So here goes.

- Store discs in individual cases
- Keep discs shielded from heat or humid areas
- Periodically clean stored DVDs with a soft dry cloth (wiping the underside in a radial motion inner to outer direction)
- Store in cardboard containers that include silica gel packets to absorb any moisture
- Make multiple back ups of your discs as a safety precaution

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Burn DVDs Like a Professional

duplication, DVD-RHawksM17 December 2010

It takes more than just equipment to be able to burn DVDs like a pro.

You will need a DVD ripper to compress your video into an mp3, wav, or ogg files, as well as the capability to compress audio in order to duplicate or replicate your files.

When considering speed, burners are measured in how much faster DVDs will burn than they play, but computer CPU capacity will also play a factor in how well your computer can keep up with the speed of the burner. Keep in mind that your machine will have to be able to convert burned data to DVD-r media on your hard drive. For optimal burning speeds, make sure you have at least 40GB of free space on your machine.

Now that you know the basics, here are some tips for getting the most out of your ripping equipment.

1. Use reliable media. The quality of the DVD-R disc you use will make all the difference in the quantity and the quality of your duplication project. Just keep in mind that price doesn’t always equate to quality in the duplication world, although the cheapest usually isn’t the best.

2. Review your discs. Every batch of discs will include a few faulty or unusable discs even n packs from the most reputable manufacturers. Look for scratches, cracks, spots, or blotches on the underside of every DVD-R disc; any of these physical defects will cause flaws and playback distortions.

3. Keep everything clean. Dust the outside of your DVD burner regularly and make sure to keep the area you handle and store discs clean and uncluttered free of dust, grime, or grease.

4. Research and test-drive software and hardware. When you’re starting out don’t worry about getting the top-of-the line equipment; you’ll want the most user-friendly software with a simple user interface. Also pay close attention to the customer support offered with your equipment.

5. Stay updated. No matter how expensive your equipment is, make it a priority to keep on top of all software and equipment upgrades required and available to you. Burning errors due to software bugs are not something you want to get hung up on in the middle of a job. Register each piece of new equipment to get automatic updates for your system.

6. Pay attention to compatibility. Using a Universal Disc Format (UDF) 1.02 program won’t limit the playability of your replicated discs as opposed to a UDF 1.5, which may experience playability issues on certain systems. Search your program drop-down list to select the right format.

7. Keep it simple. Avoid running other programs or software when in the middle of a burning project to maximize your system’s speed. Keep in mind that you can always slow down the burn speed to reduce the risk of errors.

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New, Eco-Friendly Recordable Disc Blazes the Market

DVD-RHawksM13 August 2010

For companies who are looking to offer their clients and customers a product that is not only economical, but also ecoconscious, CD Digital Card has come to the rescue. The Flex DVD competes with the traditional DVD-5 discs on all levels, except that can be touted as the only “green” DVD replication option.

With the Flex DVD, CD Digital has created a more flexible, durable, and affordable DVD replication option by using one-half of the polycarbonate and chemicals in replication than the standard DVD-5 process. The Flex DVD is a single layer format, offering the same storage capacity as the DVD-5 (4.7 GB for standard size) at half the thickness of a standard DVD (0.6mm thickness).

CD Digital has designed, engineered, tested, and patented its technology to ensure that the materials are 100 percent recyclable and will emit 53 percent less carbon during the manufacturing process. The company claims that is Flex discs are shatter-proof and crack-proof – resistant to all types of breakage – and playable on any basic DVD player.

The lighter and more resilient disc makes the Flex DVD more adaptable and more affordable for shipping – ideal for direct marketing, mailing, books, magazines, and even children’s applications – and makes it possible to eliminate polybagging and to ship as Standard Mail.

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New DVD/CD Rewritable Drives Released by Sony Optiarc

DVD DL, DVD-RHawksM22 April 2010

Blu-ray recording is still far from becoming a household commodity. As such Sony Optiarc, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony, is set to debut a new line of CD and DVD optical disc drives, the AD-7260S and the DRX-S77U with improved functionality, portability, and speed.


The internal half-height AD-7260S CD/DVD burner builds on the Sony predecessor the AD-7240S by offering 2MB buffer and supports 24X max DVD+/-R recording, 12X DVD+/-R Double/Dual layer recording, 12X DVD-RAM, and 48X CD-R recording. The product also features auto write functionality. And with Sony’s LightScribe technology AD-7260S users can customize each disc label.

With USB 2.0 connectivity, the external interface DRX-S77U boasts 8x DVD +/-R recording speeds, holding up to 4.7 GB of video, data, music or images. But it doesn’t tap out there, the new lightweight device can also record on 8.5 GB DVD+/-R Double/Dual layer and 4.7 GB DVD-RW discs at 6X speed, as well as DVD+RW at 8X speed, DVD-RAM at 5X speed, and CD-R/RW at 24X.

To increase keep up with the new trend in colored netbooks, Sony is offering the DRX-S77U in a variety of colors, including black, white, pink, and gold. And has released the device with Windows 7 compatibility, as well as in a bundle with Nero 9 DVD/CD mastering software suite.


Sony has yet to release pricing on the two new devices but both products are set to debut in stores soon.

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LightScribe Direct Disc Labeling

CD-R, DVD-R, VerbatimHawksM30 December 2009

LightScribe technology offers consumers and businesses a simple, no-hassle way to burn professional, silkscreen-quality labels on their CDs and DVDs. Using the same laser that burns data in their disc drives, customers burn their data as always, flip the disc over, re-insert it into the drive and burn a precise and permanent iridescent label.



Professional-quality labels: Laser precision and detail
Simplicity: Just Burn – Flip – Burn
Durability: Long-lasting, scratch-resistant labels.
Mobility: Burn labels wherever you burn a disc, no need for printers!
Creativity: Combine text and graphics to personalize discs.


LightScirbe Direct Disc Labeling technology requires three elements:

  1. LightScribe-enabled optical disc drive (ODD) – The drive can be either built into your desktop or notebook PC or you can use an external disc drive.
  2. LightScribe-compatible media – LightScribe CD/DVD’s utilize a special coating applied to the disc surface that interacts with the laser of the LightScribe-enabled disc drive. Consumers can readily identify LightScribe-compatible media through the LightScribe logo found on media packaging and in the lower hub of each disc.
  3. LightScribe-supported software applications – In addition to a label-making software, you will need LightScribe System Software (This software may be included with your hardware, or it may need to be installed separately). With this software, you can create one-of-a-kind designs for your CDs and DVDs using your own photos, text and artwork

Verbatim LightScribe Media

Verbatim offers a wide selection of LightScribe ­compatible media:

  • CDR, DVD+R and DVD-R formats
  • Multiple pack sizes
  • Available in standard gold or colored background discs


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What is LightScribe Printing Technology?

CD-R, DVD-RHawksM13 October 2009

One of the most interesting things to come from HP in the past few years is the advent of LightScribe technology. This is a laser-etching device that utilizes specially coated CD-Rs and DVD-Rs. You will be able to add text, graphics, and even photos directly onto the media. This opens up many creative possibilities.

When the technology was first introduced, the only color discs available were sepia. While you could still create some amazing effects with the media, many people longed for more colors. Today, you can find red, orange, blue, yellow, and green, which will give you even more options when you create a disc. In addition, the speed of the CD-Rs and DVD-Rs is greater than it was when they were first introduced.

One of the benefits of the LightScribe technology is that you no longer have to struggle with the stick-on labels. As most people can attest, one misstep with those old labels and you could ruin the CD-R or DVD-R and have to start over. A benefit over the inkjet printable media is that you don’t have to worry about letting the disc dry when the printing is complete.

The discs are easy to use. After you have added files to your disc, you will then remove the disc from the drive and turn it over so that the label side is now facing the laser. Create the design that you want for your CD and then “print”. The laser will take care of everything else.

You will need to have a disc writer that is compatible with this technology, as well as the special CD-Rs and DVD-Rs. While you might not want to spend money on getting a new drive, consider some of the benefits that the LightScribe printing technology brings.

First, you don’t have to struggle with ink or labels anymore, and you don’t have to worry about the label causing a problem when you put the CD-R or DVD-R into a drive.

You will be able to use the LightScribe discs to label everything and keep organized. Label your photo discs, your music discs, and everything else that you have.

The technology is great for bands that sell their products at their shows, artists, and more. They can simply burn the discs with their logo and track list and then sell them. They look great and they are easy to use. They also make a better looking gift than a CD-R with a hastily scrawled title in black marker.

If you are interested in Lightscribe DVD-R or CD-R check out our lightScribe section

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Archival DVD-R and CD-R

CD-R, DVD-RHawksM29 April 2009

Whether you are a small business owner looking to back-up company files, an art teacher who wants to pass on interesting curios to your class, or an audiophile who is transferring your LP records and want a copy that will last for many years. Despite advances in CD and DVD-R technology, data breaks down and degrades occur over time. The dye on a disc which stores the data can corrode causing data errors during playback or reading the disc. The reflective layer can also oxidize and prematurely cause data degradation and loss of quality or even complete loss of data.

Archive DVD-R, Gold Layer

Archive DVD-R, Gold Layer

Many recordable DVD and CD discs use silver as a reflective surface. Special “archive grade” CD-R and DVD-R however, use a more resistant 24 carat gold reflective layer. MAM-A boasts that their gold CD-R can last 300 years and Gold DVD-R 100 years.

To test longevity claims, manufactures submit their archive grade CDs to a special “rapid aging” gauntlet. Discs are placed in an environmental chamber and exposed to varying levels of heat and humidity. Silver layer reflective DVD-R discs tend to fail after spending 500 hours or so in such a chamber. MAM gold discs, on the other hand, retain their efficacy for far longer. (The ISO guidelines for such environmental stress tests have been well established and search for disc errors at intervals of around 500 hours.)

Why might archiving data be important to your home, office or firm? Here are some examples of when you might need this technology:

•    You want to keep important tax information or business accounting records on hand for years to protect your business.

•    You live in a climate that has a lot of humidity and other climate factors that might cause non-archival grade discs to degrade relatively rapidly.

•    You’ve discovered from experience that standard recording technologies are not long term enough for your data protection.

•    You need to create a “master” audio CD that will archive music recordings that can’t be replaced if lost.

•    You want to keep copies of camcorders movies for generations.

If you need help choosing an Archive DVD-R or CD-R, visit our Gold DVD-R section or the Gold CD-R section at

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Burning DVDs Requires Brand Name DVD-R

DVD-RHawksM07 March 2007

DVD recorders for use in Home Theater are on the rise, many people are using DVD recorders to replace the “traditional” VHS VCR. I have been using this DVD Recorder since 2005 and I absolutely love it. I mostly keep personal archive copies of UFC fights on DVD. The amount of physical storage space that a DVD saves as compared a VHS tape is astonishing. I know it is common sense, but when I look back over my collection I see 15 UFC fights that stack up to be less than 4 inches! That is 2 years of fights in less than 4 inches. If this was still VHS days, 4 inches would be 4 fights. I store my DVD copies in Slim Jewel Cases instead of DVD cases. I got my DVD recorder before Couture vs Liddell II and I have never been happier. However recently I went to view that UFC 52 fight on an older JVC DVD player and I was frustrated to experience “freezing”, this is where the DVD player gets confused and the picture freezes. Actually it is the laser that is having a hard time reading the data on the DVD that causes this. I recorded this fight on a Gigastorage DVD-R. Fortunately I only had 1 sample of this brand DVD-R because all of my subsequent recordings were on Verbatim DVD-R. I say fortunate because I viewed those subsequent recording and sure enough they played flawlessly in that same JVC player.
So……if you are new to DVD recording brand is probably the most important thing to consider when you are shopping for a blank DVD-R. A quality brand will almost always be the best choice for any application whether it be archiving, master recording, duplicating or just burning a DVD to watch on your TV. Quality brands are made to perform better, last longer and have the most universal compatibility across various DVD players. If you want your burned DVD to play in 95+% of DVD players without “freezing” then you should stick with brands known for quality. Verbatim, Taiyo Yuden and MAM-A have been known to produce the highest quality DVD-R media.

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