FAQ - CD/DVD General

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What is CD-R and CD-RW?

CD-R is short for Compact Disc Recordable. Data can be copied to CD-R discs with a special writer that uses a high power laser to burn digital information onto grooved, spiral tracks known as the recording surface. The CD-R has many of the same properties of a traditional stamped CD-ROM and can be read in any CD-ROM drive. CD-RW is short for Compact Disc Rewritable. White a CD-R disc can be written to only once, a CD-RW disc may be copied to and rewritten many times. CD-R media generally is used for software distribution while CD-RW is used more for data backup.

How much information can a CD-R hold?

The amount of information that can be stored on a CD-R varies depending on the size of the disc. A standard CD-R is available in 74 minutes (and holds 650 MB data) or 80 minutes (which holds 700 MB data). There are also specialty CD-R products such as Mini CD-R (which holds 180 MB data) and Business Card CD-R (which holds 50 MB data).

Is one brand of CD-R media better than another?

Brand preferences are usually based on a customer's familiarity with a specific manufacturer or product. Having different brands available to our customers broadens choices for look, style, and price. All media offered by Diversified Systems meets the requirements and specifications for OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) production.

What is DVD-R?

DVD-R discs are the recordable version of the popular DVD format. DVD-R discs have the same physical size as CD-R, but can hold as much as seven times the amount of data. Current DVD-R format allows for 4.7GB of storage. The increased storage capacity lends itself to applications like media presentations, data archiving, and large volume data distribution. You must have a DVD drive in order to read a DVD-R disc.

What is the difference between a DVD-ROM and a DVD-R copy?

DVD-ROM discs are produced by physically stamping encoded information onto a poly carbonate substrate. As with the CD-ROM, data is transferred to a master stamper and replicates are produced by pressing the discs from the master. DVD-R discs have a recordable dye that, when exposed to a concentrated laser beam, allows information to be encoded or burned into the disc.

How do I get copies made of DVD-R to distribute?

Make one copy of your DVD-R master and provide it to Diversified Systems. Whenever possible, use a DVD-R drive to make this copy. If you have a DVD+R drive or other type of DVD recordable drive, there may be some compatibility issues in using masters created in those drives. We will create a verification copy for you to proof should compatibility issues arise. Once we have a suitable master we can make copies on our automated multiple drive DVD-R copiers.

IMPORTANT! Can all DVD-ROM drives read the DVD-R copies I need to distribute?

At this time, industry surveys suggest that 98% of all DVD-ROM drives can read DVD-R copies. Early generations of DVD-ROM drives have compatibility issues which prevent the DVD-R format from being 100% compatible. To achieve the highest level of playability in the field you should use the highest quality media available and apply stringent copy and verification procedures when duplicating your discs.

How do I label my CD or DVD discs?

All the same choices you have with CD media are available for DVD media. Diversified Systems can screen print your media (up to 5 color); do a one-color thermal print (black, blue, or red), or a full-color thermal print on our Rimage Everest printer; do a direct-to-disc inkjet print; or apply 2400 DPI custom printed labels to your disc. All printing services are performed in house. We also offer full art design services to our customers.

What are my packaging options for CD and DVD media?

Both traditional CD packaging and newer DVD packaging are available. Diversified Systems stocks a large variety of packaging products, including standard and slim line jewel cases; a variety of sleeves; clam shells available in various colors; mailers; and DVD boxes. We are also capable of producing many of the custom printed inserts, liners, sleeves, and folders you may require and can assemble your job for you.

I see several different types of DVD recordable drives on the market. What are the differences?

At this time the DVD-R is the clear choice for small run data and content distribution. Runs with larger quantities and longer lead times should still consider the DVD-ROM replicated discs. The remaining formats have specialized applications including the ability to record and re-write multiple times to the same disc. Below is a listing of the various DVD drive and disc offerings. It is meant to provide a simple overview of the many different types of DVD media currently available to consumers. If you require a specific answer to a question, please contact a Diversified Systems representative. We'll be glad to help.