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Which DVD should I use?

Community Veteran
Posts: 17,023
Thanks: 1,217
Fixes: 13
Registered: 06-11-2007

Which DVD should I use?

Just got a new laptop.... missus`s burnt the mobo, so I got a new one, and she got my old one !...
this one I got has a DVD writer, so IF I want to make backups of my photograps and other stuff, I can use the DVD writer.....
EXCEPT.... I don`t know which type I should buy.... + - +/-  R  RW,
and speed numbers too?  what do they all mean?
How do I find out, is there something in the "system"  or hardware file/folders  on the laptop somewhere?
Do I need different type(s) for making movie DVD to making backup copies of files?
7 REPLIES
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Which DVD should I use?

its a bit of a nightmare, most new DVD players take + and -, the older ones dont, but my old friend the Google came up with this http://support.gateway.com/s/dvd/shared/5502420faq8.shtml
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,111
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Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: Which DVD should I use?

Right...
On the question of going for - or + media, - media has slightly better compatibility with old DVD players etc. than + media, because it was ratified as part of the DVD specification a few years earlier than +. So this is worth bearing in mind if you're making DVDs that you'll give to people, as some of those people might have older devices.
Regarding R vs. RW, the main difference is that R discs can't be erased, so what you burn to them has to stay there for good. RW ('rewriteable') discs can be used over-and-over again. However, I do believe some standalone DVD players can have problems reading RW discs, so for movies that you hand out to people, you'll probably want to stick with R. Also, RW discs are considerably more expensive.
Finally, the speed: different DVD writers can support different maximum burn speeds, but in order for things to work, you need discs that are known to work at such high speeds - i.e. an 8x disc may cause problems if burnt at 16x. Having said that, disc burning software generally allows you to control the burn speed used irrespective of your drive's maximum speed. So if you want to save money, you can buy cheaper, slow-burning discs.
Community Veteran
Posts: 17,023
Thanks: 1,217
Fixes: 13
Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Which DVD should I use?

Thanks to PP for the linky .. very informative.... have bookmarked it, so I can read it again, and again, and again... !
Thanks to Be3G for the short version. !  much appreciated....  Smiley
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 17,370
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Registered: 11-01-2008

Re: Which DVD should I use?

I plump for -R's personally, for the compatibility reason and they seem to burn better in my drive.
Will Moderate For Thanks
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,291
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Registered: 10-08-2007

Re: Which DVD should I use?

Google the details of your drive, This is mine http://reviews.cnet.com/Sony_DW_U54A_DVD_RW_drive_IDE/4507-3212_7-31296004.html?tag=nav
It shows the dvd compatibility and all the relevant speeds etc
Community Veteran
Posts: 17,023
Thanks: 1,217
Fixes: 13
Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Which DVD should I use?

Thanks, santiago,  have looked up my "system" information, initially to get the dvd player info to google, however it also says it can use  + or - dvd`s, so I am fixed up now !  Wink
Adiewoo, thanks for the tip about - being more compatible with older equipment, Wink
I shall remember that if I do any film stuff for "outsiders"... as original idea is to store photos and other files,
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,236
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: Which DVD should I use?

The answer may be simple. Most players don't care between + and -
I decided on + because my recorder burns them faster, simple as that. I occasionally buy - if that is all is in stock wherever I am buying the discs.