DVD Media Reviews

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There are lots of reviews on the web on DVD writers, but very little on the media itself. The right kind of media can make a big difference. I’ve used the Verbatim Data Life Plus line for CDs for a long time with great results, but with the plethora of DVDs out, what’s the right choice. Here are some places to look:

* Dvd Media Reviews. They have a pretty large set of reviews and do a bunch of burning with different drives that covers most of the major labels.
* “DVD-Recordable”:http://www.dvd-recordable.org/Reviews+index-req-showcontent-id-126.phtml. These folks have a great set of media test for the “off brand stuff”. In particular Ritek makes really cheap media as does Titanium, so you can se their tests.
* “CDR-Zone Media Forum”:http://www.cdr-zone.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=26. Some of the best data are on these forums as various hobbiest try different media.
* “DVDInfoPro”:http://dvdinfopro.com. This is a utility program that lets you do your own testing. What you find quite a bit is that if you record at 16x, then quality is tough, so slowing down to 12x is sometimes smart and is only a little bit slower.

So here are some things that I learned mainly from the CDR-Zone “Guide”:http://www.cdr-zone.com/articles/recordable_dvd_quality_page_1.html to high quality DVD media:

h2. Premium Media

This is the best quality and it costs more but you get great DVD burns:

* Taiyo Yuden. They also OEM to Plextor and Miflop Extreme
* Verbatim . It depends who manufactured this for Verbatim. For 8x media look for made in Japan. DataLifePlus is another indicator of quality
* Sony. _The most surprising recommendation, I personally haven’t seen such great reviews._
* Ricoh. But only for DVD+R media
* Panasonic. Look for Made In Japan on the packaging

Much of this is hard to find, but “Super Media Store”:http://www.supermediastore.com/ has a huge selection of DVD media (and CD media for that matter) at good prices and they have a special “Taiyo Yuden”:http://www.supermediastore.com/taiyo-yuden-dvd-r-media.html section with good prices. Or see the “Taiyo”:http://www.pricegrabber.com/search_attrib.php/page_id=2/mf=1/vendors%5B%5D=PGTYY prices at Pricegrabber.

h2. Recommended Media

This is good stuff, but you have to make sure that your particular drive with your particular firmware does well with it. So caveat emptor here, you need to read the reviews carefully and see if they tested your drive. Or test it yourself. This stuff has the best price/performance:

* Traxdata. always uses Ritek A grade dyes – it’s as good as Ritek media gets
* Ridata
* Ridisc Xtreme
* HP
* Ricoh. DVD-R versions only
* Infiniti
* Philips
* TDK
* BeAll
* BenQ
* Fujifilm
* Imation
* Samsung
* Optodisc
* Thats Write
* 3A Media
* 4M Media
* Piodata
* ToPrint
* Emtec
* Daxon
* Mitsui
* Maxell
* MAM-E
* MAM-A

They have lists for Budget and “landfill”. To me, don’t be penny-wise and pound foolish, stick with the best quality you can afford.

h2. Individual media reviews

* “Verbatim 8x DVD+R DL”:http://www.cdr-zone.com/reviews/dvd_media_reviews/verbatim_8x__double_layer_media_review_page_1.html. This is both big and fast media made by Mitsubishi Kageku Media. (Along with Taiyo Yuden, one of the best). It had great quality and was particularly good with the Benq 1640.

* “Philips DVD+R 16x”:http://www.cdr-zone.com/reviews/dvd_media_reviews/philips_16x_dvd_media_review_page_3.html. This burns particularly well on the Benq 1640 since Philips actually OEMs these drives. The media is made by Infomatics, which is a decent vendor.

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