Discs coming filthy, even when brand new??

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Vince Maskeeper, Jan 21, 2004.

  1. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    I've noticed this more and more- I have a DVD collection of about 400 titles, and within the last year I've noticed one or two, here and there, come from a brand new, shrinkwrapped package- with a rather "used" look to them.

    Not usually scratched, just sometimes smudged (and even kind of fingerprinted) or worse: covered in fine lint or dust.

    The most recent one which has really given me pause was THE WEST WING. I got this for Christmas from my mom, and when i opened the (shrinkwrapped and tagged) package- the discs were absolutely filty- covered in lint and small hairs/fabric residue. Every disc was considerably dirty, and some even appeared to have very fine scratches.

    This was confirmed when several episodes skipped or locked up. Unfortunately, I don't have the receipt (was a gift) and it was purchased a month or two ago (mom likes to shop early)-- so I don't know if I can return it.


    But more importantly, I wondered if anyone else has seen this trend? I'm wondering if the quality of replication facilities is sliding as DVD takes more market share?

    -V
     
  2. Jough

    Jough Stunt Coordinator

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    Wow. I've never received a new disc with fingerprints on it, since usually human hands never touch the discs on the assembly line. It sounds like it may have been a return that was rewrapped. Yikes!

    In any case, I am noticing more fibers and manufacturing shards stuck to the disc (due to static electricity).

    The first thing to go when a company is trying to trim costs to make more profit is Quality Control. Cut back on QC and they get more returns - OR DO THEY?

    The only way to combat the problem is to take/send back any disc that is not in pristine condition.

    The studios are banking that you're too eager to watch the film to send it back. So watch it first. [​IMG]
     
  3. Andrew Bunk

    Andrew Bunk Screenwriter

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    Vince,

    Not sure if you remember, but when WW first came out several people, including myself and the HTF reviewer, commented on how their discs were in horrible condition. Must have been some sort of anomaly with the way WW was packaged and handled. Fortunately I was able to swap the discs and all played fine.

    I'm over 600 titles now, and I can't say I've seen a substantial increase in bad disc condition, but I still see it now and again. Most recently, my copy of Open Range and some markings on it but played OK. I'm sure cost-cutting by studios plays a factor.
     
  4. Grant H

    Grant H Cinematographer

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    The second disc of my Alias Season 2 looked like a bunch of dirty monkeys were playing with it. I only discovered it when I had to get it out of the player since it couldn't even read it. Really greasy smudges. Never saw anything like it.

    Maybe they use monkeys to pick up the ones that fall off the assembly line.

    I had to wait and wait to get it since it was backordered ad DDD. I wiped it off and it only had very light surface scratches, but I was very annoyed. Played fine once I got it clean at least.

    My Andromeda set had a much more severely scratched disc thanks to it falling off the hub. Fortunately, it played ok, and I can run it through my DVD Doctor to be on the safe side.
     
  5. Mark Zimmer

    Mark Zimmer Producer

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    My sealed prerelease review copy of Green Acres Season 1 had fingerprints on all four sides. [​IMG]
     
  6. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Lead Actor
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    All of my recent DVD purchases have been fine, except for (you guessed it) The West Wing. The discs played fine until I got to the bonus disc (which I saved for last). Though the surface scratching was minor and didn't seem like it would affect play, the disc was absolutely unplayable.

    Fortunately, Amazon had extended it's return policy for the holidays, so even though I bought the set as soon as it came out and didn't notice a problem until past the 30 day return window, they did exchange it, no questions asked. The new copy was absolutely pristine - I wonder if Warner repressed or at least repackaged them within those two months?
     
  7. Rob Lutter

    Rob Lutter Producer

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    Remember that DVDs, for the most part, are still packed by hand... so there are bound to be a few discs that have a mark here or there.

    As long as they play, I don't see it as a very big deal... maybe get a disc-cleaning cloth and wipe off the marks if it bothers you.

    It's funny because I've had a bunch of hollywood discs with this problem, but all my anime discs are pristine. [​IMG]
     
  8. nicholas_g

    nicholas_g Stunt Coordinator

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    I just got the new R1 of Star Trek VI. There was a mark on it right in the middle of the disc. It plays fine, but I didn't like having it on the disc. I ended up using cleaning fluid ot get it off.

    There is also a row of very fine scratches which I have seen a number of times on both R1 and R2. They are around five or six fine small straight scratches close together.

    I have also seen a number of discs with dust like particles.

    I remember discs being perfect years ago. Maybe the number of discs being produced is affecting the quality of the output? It is not just R1 but also R2.
     
  9. Eric Peterson

    Eric Peterson Cinematographer

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    I've noticed quite a few discs with fingerprints, dust, etc.. on them. To date, I don't believe any of these have been problematic, but then again I own many discs that have never seen my player yet. So Little Time!!!
     
  10. Neil White

    Neil White Supporting Actor

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    My copy of Spy Kids 2 bought when it was released was incredibly bad. It was covered, and I mean covered in greasy fingerprints. I had to clean it before it would even register in the player. It looked just like a kid had been eating chips and then picked up the disk and manhandled it for a few minutes. It was a new, shrink-wrapped copy.

    N
     
  11. Scott Kimball

    Scott Kimball Screenwriter

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    One of my Star Trek TNG season sets came with a disc that had a Nike treadmark on the data side, and the label side was all scuffed. It looked like one of the packagers skated on it before packing it.

    Amazingly, I dusted off the treadmark, and it worked fine. Though, the label is severely scratched.

    Other than that, I've had a few discs with visible scratches (mostly Fox Digipacks) and some with fingerprints.

    -Scott
     
  12. Matt Goddard

    Matt Goddard Stunt Coordinator

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    If a trend can be picked up here at all, it would seem this happens a lot to television sets with multiple discs. That's certainly my own experience but I don't know why. The occasional movie may be bad, but it seems more likely to happen with TV shows.
     
  13. Michael Flynn

    Michael Flynn Stunt Coordinator

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    My copy of Ghostbusters II (packed as a double feature with the first film) had a glue spot on it (!). Luckily, it *did* work after a while.
     
  14. Antonio Silva

    Antonio Silva Stunt Coordinator

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    It happened with one of my X-Files Season 8 discs. Totally covered with fingerprints. Played fine though. Don't they use gloves or something?
     
  15. MichaelO

    MichaelO Stunt Coordinator

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    It took me trying three Die Hard sets to get a clean set, the first two sets I opened both had finger prints on disc #2. I actually picked the set up on release day and then exchanged the very next.

    Just recently, disc one of South Park Season 1 was finger printed up. The other two discs in the set were pristine.

    Weird.
     
  16. GarySchrock

    GarySchrock Second Unit

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    I haven't seen too many fingers, however I've noticed a trend where it looks like the people packing the discs slide the disc over the center hub as they're putting it in. As a result you get a series of parallel scratches that match up pretty well with the high spots on the hubs.
     
  17. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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    My most recent anime purchase was displaying Mandelbrot patterns when played, the cause being three nice oily fingerprints on the playing surface-none of which were mine. I'd agree that the amount of dust and other crud on the discs is increasing on new copies.
     
  18. Whit

    Whit Auditioning

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    More complex packaging builds such as digipaks can not be packaged using an automated line. Those types of packaging jobs will all be done by hand. That would explain why many of these examples are from television box sets.
     
  19. TedT

    TedT Second Unit

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    I found a pube in the latest copy of Insane Clown Possy's Juggalo Championshit Wrestling. I bought a copy and took it home and opened it. It was so scratched up, it wouldn't play. I returned it to Tower Records. Got another copy which I opened up there and THAT was scratched to hell. Got a third copy and opened it there at the store and while it was just slightly scratched, I found a (female, based on my experience) PUBE on the disk!
     
  20. Jough

    Jough Stunt Coordinator

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    Actually, Ted, it's impossible to determine whether a hair (from any part of the body) is from a male or female without a DNA test (assuming the hair contains a follicle or any DNA fragments).

    And good point about the Digipaks being packed by hand. I've seen keepcase manufacturing and they have big scary machines to handle and pack (and wrap, for that matter) the discs, but some of the multi-season digipaks would have to be packed by hand, by immigrant workers who don't take care to handle the discs by their edges, and who may eat their lunch while working on the line (based on some reports of greasy mayonaise-type smudges).

    Lovely.
     

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