The Maintenance of DVDs: Who tried bananas? (I didn’t)

Children, the young ones, like to be helpful.  I like to hand you the disk (throw it at you as hard as possible), or removing and forcing the disc into the player over and over.  One time my youngest placed a “shoots and ladders” person piece (cardboard) into the PS3, and when turned on the disc that currently resided there had circle of scraping.  Scratches, and love can make any DVD not useable.

All rights reserved, and use common sense.

Image 1. All rights reserved, and use common sense.

Storage (See Last Blog)

Scratches, Smudges, and Fingerprints

The DVD or a CD are sturdy, especially the ones that you do not record, and most scratches will not screw up the laser that will read the DVD.  The older the DVD player and poorly built players will have a harder time, so it’s not always the DVD, but the player as well.

There is an error-correcting coding system that is built-in to CD/DVD players that help when discs are scratched.   This little device helps with minor scratches.  When the disk is scratch data is not being hurt, but the access from the laser to the data.  Fingerprints can be far worse in this respect because the dirt or smudge blocks the laser from reading the data, and the error-correcting coding system will not be-able to help (Byers 2003).

Error-correcting coding system - Google

Image 2. Error-correcting coding system – US 4295218 A (Image 1 of 12) – Fromm Google Patent Search

When to Clean?

Cleaning a disk can cause more problems than one wants (hence the disclaimer).  When cleaning more scratches can appear, or the wrong type of liquid can cause irreversible damage, such as dissolving the polycarbonate protecting layer.  Cleaning  is necessary when the scratches, smudges, fingerprints, etc…. are visible or causing a problem such as the dreaded skip.

BlueRay_Layer

Image 3. An image that I have download and used from a foreign website.

DVD+R Layer 9

Image 4. This is an image of a DVD+R 9 from Superuser.

How?

Inside to the Outside Vs. Circular Motion

Cleaning from the inside to the outside and information is stored not from horizontal but in circles.

Image 5. Cleaning from the inside to the outside and information is stored not from the vertical but in circles.

When cleaning the DVD or CD it is critical to clean from inside to the outside.  Information is not stored on the vertical, but held in a circle pattern that wraps around.  Majority of the time there will not be extra damage even if the person cleans in a circular motion, but why take the risk.  If a scratch happens in a circular motion more data will be damage than if done to inside to the outside.

Tools

This is a compiled list of  tools of how to clean DVD/CDs.

Image 6. This is a compiled list of tools of how to clean DVD/CDs.  I am sure there are other possibilities as well, and not all of these solutions are solutions.

There is no scientific study done on the cleaning of DVDs/CDs besides Byers majority of the information are blog based.  Majority of the methods seem to get mixed results depending on the harshness in quality.  There have been a chewing gum method, and saw that on YouTube, but another blogger has tried it and has not succeeded.

Also, keep in mind such as the more abrasive methods (Brasso, bought device, video store help, toothpaste) are used to sand a layer of the DVD/CD.  This is important when a Blu-ray disc is come into question.  There is a possibility of damaging the disc further stripping the first layer, which means the blue laser might not be able to read the disc.

The not so much abrasive methods still offer a chance at extra scratching as well, but not as much.  The key idea with these items are too clear out any dirt or grime with in the larger scratches this will allow the error-correcting coding system do its work.

Which type of cloth type of device to use?  A commonly found answer was a no lint, and microfiber cloth.  This seems to be smart.  The idea of the microfiber rag or cloth allows the max on cleaning the disc, and at the same time offers the least chance of scratches.  Microfiber is used commonly when applying wax, and cleaning of a car.  Microfiber picks up the dirt, and the grime where as a fiber like cotton only pushes it aside.

Results

I have tried the car wax route, and had mixed results.  That was with the spray bottle.  The next step is to get the non-liquid wax.  The results will be saved for a future time.

Extra Information & Sources

Notes

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s