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What do you do when you discover a disc issue? (1 Viewer)

Josh Steinberg

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Here’s the thing with consumer grade burned media - that is, blank discs you buy and burn at home. They’re not meant to be archival grade material. I don’t really think there is one simple “set it and forget it” thing at the consumer level where you can make one copy of a thing and be done with worrying about it forever. That barely exists at the professional level, particularly with digital content.

It’s true that there are now special film stocks that have been created to serve as archival assets that could last for decades if not a century. Which is why, even if major studios aren’t sending film prints to theaters anymore, they’re still creating a backup element on film to hold in a vault just in case. If something’s archived on a hard drive, it should be backed up to a different drive on a regular basis. If something’s backed up on a burned disc, it should be checked and recopied on a regular basis (and the raw files used to create the disc in the first place should be backed up on a drive and recopied regularly too). It’s a huge burden for any individual to handle on a regular basis.

As crazy as it sounds, the VHS copies of my family home movies are probably more stable over the long term than the DVD-R copies I’ve made or the hard drives that also have copies of the footage. It sounds counter-intuitive but that’s how it is. The genius thing about analog tape is that if it tears, I can splice it and repair and lose just a tiny portion of it; if the disc or hard drive it’s on has a defect, the entire thing might be useless.

I’ve worked in professional archiving and this remains a challenge at that level too.

On the consumer level, it’s certainly possible to protect your assets for long term preservation but it’s a constant effort requiring frequent maintenance. It’s a lot to ask. From a practical point of view, I’ll put the effort in to those family home movies and maybe a couple other extremely rare bits of content I have, but not for most other things. In the end, the cost of replacing a DVD that goes bad would be less than the cost of creating an archivally sound system to ensure against any data loss.

Sorry for getting long-winded - all of this is simply to say, yeah, all of this can be a big pain with multiple areas of frustration.
 

TJPC

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I must be very lucky! I had a huge life time collection of LP records which I took about 5 years to "convert" into CD-Rs by either playing them into my computer, de-popping and making wave files or copying the equivalent cd from the public library. Some of the library CDs had damaged tracks so I would copy what I could and insert tracks from my LP for the rest. This job was completed over 10 years ago. I have yet - touch wood - to have a problem with any of them.
 

Paul Bosquet

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I’m trying to get a replacement disc for Dr Strangelove from the Clomunbia Classics set. I went to play it for the first time and it started pixelating. Took it out to find scratches on the disc. I’m extremely careful with my discs and since this was a first time viewing, I’m hoping it will get replaced. Sony asked for photos and information about my entire setup. I activated the digital code when I first got it, so I could always use that or the Blu, but I would prefer a 4K disc.
 

Josh Steinberg

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I must be very lucky! I had a huge life time collection of LP records which I took about 5 years to "convert" into CD-Rs by either playing them into my computer, de-popping and making wave files or copying the equivalent cd from the public library. Some of the library CDs had damaged tracks so I would copy what I could and insert tracks from my LP for the rest. This job was completed over 10 years ago. I have yet - touch wood - to have a problem with any of them.

The error correction built into the redbook format CD and CD players is rather robust - even if a CD-R has a minor error or bit of degradation, it’s much more likely to play properly than a DVD-R with similar issues.
 

jcroy

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The error correction built into the redbook format CD and CD players is rather robust - even if a CD-R has a minor error or bit of degradation, it’s much more likely to play properly than a DVD-R with similar issues.

Actually the error correction on dvd discs is much more sophisticated than on redbook cd. Dvd has much larger error correction data packets.

Much more insidious is when the "control" sectors on a cd / dvd discs which a cd / dvd player first reads to determine what the parameters of the cd /dvd disc are, become completely unreadable. In such cases, the cd / dvd player will return back a "disc not found" type of error.
 

Paintbeanie

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I've had a few bad DVDs over the years. I just replace them with another copy, upgrading if I can.
That’s what I’ve done although there were a couple that were universally bad and I was either unable to replace or had to go with an edition that I didn’t want. Before I do that I also usually clean the dvd gently with water and a paper towel and/or run it through a dvd skip dr, just to make sure there is nothing else I can do to fix it.
 

TJPC

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Sometimes it is possible to make a copy of a damaged disc and for some reason the copy will play fine.
 

rmnich

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Yes... that happened to me when I found out problems on multiple Blu-rays from Twilight Time.... issues confirmed by many posts about those same discs (Our Man Flint... In Like Flint... Experiment in Terror...).... and, as far as I can tell, no offer by Twilight Time to replace.... but continuing to offer sales of their product .....which I never buy again
 

BobO'Link

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You no longer have to worry about Twilight Time. The founder/owner passed away and they shut down the label. After a final "thank you" sale, all remaining stock was sold to other retailers.

That said, from what I've read all you had to do was contact them and they'd have replaced any defective discs if they had stock.
 

rmnich

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Well...I hope other members of this forum might share their experience with 'contacting' Twilight Time and getting replacements of discs which had problems.... also, I can't remember Twilight Time posting on this forum any acknowledgement that they had been aware of problems and offering any replacement or compensation.... perhaps....Twilight Time...was ...unaware of this forum... and never saw any problems mentioned ....i sure hope these...' other retailers' didn't have to deal with those issues... strange that anyone would continue to sell product after multiple notices of problems from paying customers....
 

rmnich

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Well...i'm happy to learn that I don't 'have to worry' since the owner passed away!!.... this must truly have been a 'one man operation'.... must have had his hands full.... imagine ...having trouble with your Ford truck... and finding out... Henry Ford had passed away... what a kick in the nuts
 

jcroy

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As crazy as it sounds, the VHS copies of my family home movies are probably more stable over the long term than the DVD-R copies I’ve made or the hard drives that also have copies of the footage. It sounds counter-intuitive but that’s how it is. The genius thing about analog tape is that if it tears, I can splice it and repair and lose just a tiny portion of it; if the disc or hard drive it’s on has a defect, the entire thing might be useless.

(On a tangent).

Ironically in some cases, a vinyl record copy preserved the sound better than the original 24-track studio mastertape. Especially when the tape was not preserved very well over the decades.
 

TJPC

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I converted all my video and audio cassettes to disc some years ago. They were stored in a clean dry basement which averaged about 17 C. About 1/5 failed to play properly at first, not because the tape failed, but because the mechanics of the cassette shell would not work anymore. Little sponge pads were crumbling to powder, or wheels would not turn etc. I had to keep a spare screw apart shell for VHS and audio tapes and break the cases of the ones that did not work and thread the tape into the empty ones. This allowed me one more play into my computer or recordable DVD player.
 
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Yeah, I think generally the collector is hosed when that happens. I've found corrupt discs several times when it was a few months later and I was told (politely, to be sure) that it was too late to get a replacement.

I did have a really positive experience with Shout about four years, long after the merger and the disappearance of the Timeless brand. I had a bum disc of the Virginian. I emailed Shout, told them I had purchased the set years ago from TMG, and asked if they'd be willing to give me a replacement for that one disc. They were! And I had it in my hands by the end of the week.
I had a negative experience with Shout. I purchased the complete Larry Sanders Show from a seller on Ebay. One of the discs was badly damaged - only discovered it a year later. Seller no longer registered on Ebay. I contacted Shout and asked would they sell me a replacement disc. Wasn't looking for a freebie but it was like talking to a robot.
 

BobO'Link

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If you mentioned you purchased it via ebay that could be your issue with them. Many (most? all? I just know I'd not purchase a Shout! set via an ebay seller at all because of all the reported issues with them on that site) of the Shout! releases you see on ebay are bootlegs. Put one of the disks in a computer drive and check the size. From Shout's "Counterfeit / Bootleg Media FAQ":

The best way to tell if your set is a bootleg is to check the size of one or more of the discs. The vast majority of our releases use dual-layered DVDs, which can hold up to 8.5 gigabytes of data. Bootleggers, on the other hand, use cheaper, single-layer discs, which can only hold up to 4.7 gigabytes of data. You can determine if your discs are single or dual-layered by checking their size in a DVD-ROM drive.

If your disc(s) are 4.7GB or smaller then they're bootleg.
 
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If you mentioned you purchased it via ebay that could be your issue with them. Many (most? all? I just know I'd not purchase a Shout! set via an ebay seller at all because of all the reported issues with them on that site) of the Shout! releases you see on ebay are bootlegs. Put one of the disks in a computer drive and check the size. From Shout's "Counterfeit / Bootleg Media FAQ":



If your disc(s) are 4.7GB or smaller then they're bootleg.
Thanks Bob
The discs were checked at the time and were 7.8GB - 8.0GB approx in size. There was also a booklet so I am satisfied that the set was genuine. My issue with Shout Factory was their formulaic and "computer says no" responses. I note the content of their FAQs and while helpful, this was not the case in my interaction with them. At no stage, did they suggest or offer any measures against the seller. I asked them would they supply a replacement disc and offered to pay U$25 plus shipping for their trouble.

If I had purchased directly from Shout Factory, they would probably have supplied a replacement for free so I could not understand their attitude. This sometimes happens with CD sets - an item turns out to be defective and an appeal to the label directly (with proof of purchase) is usually enough to secure a replacement even if it wasn't purchased directly from them.
 

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