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  1. Member
    Join Date: Dec 2004
    Location: Atlanta, GA
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    When I was looking for media the other day, I noticed that there were 2 types of CD-R's, music and data. The music discs cost $2.00 more than the data discs. Is there any difference?
    For the record, I've always gotten the data CD-R's (they're cheaper) and have never had a problem burning music to them. What's the deal here?

    Matt
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  2. Just get the Data CD-R. They work just the same for music and data.

    I dpn't know why Music CD-R's cost more. Maybe the RIAA has stock in them.
    For the love of God, use hub/core labels on your Recordable Discs!
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  3. Here in the netherlands, the Music CD-Rs are more expensive because BUMA-STEMRA (*^$&^$#) has put their taxes on. As in: you are going to record music on it, so you have to pay extra... Totally ridiculous if you ask me, since this assumes you are doing illegal copies. Instead of making your own compilation of numbers from CDs you bought legally... On those CDs STUMA-BEMRA also places taxes, so basically what they are doing is charging you twice for the same music... Nice.
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  4. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
    Join Date: Oct 2001
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    Music CD-Rs have an additional tax/fee added to them to supposedly compensate them (the record companies, and oh yeah I guess the artists too) for any supposed monetary losses due to supposed copying of their copyrighted work.

    If you had bought a consumer AudioCD recorder and/or dubber, like ones from Denon or Marantz, etc., then the machine is built so that it only accepts "Music"-type CD-Rs. Has to do with reading either the subcode in the PMA/Lead-in, a barcode in the BurstCuttingArea(BCA), or something similar. If a disc doesn't have that, it isn't acceptable.

    Note: Pro CD recorders/dubbers and computer CD burners don't check for any code like that, so they'll use any CD-R with a compatible formulation.

    Scott
    "When will the rhetorical questions end?!" - George Carlin
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  5. Member hech54's Avatar
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    Location: Yank in Europe
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    In other words....Music CD-R's are for CD Recorders. What is in a computer is a CD Burner.
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  6. Member dphirschler's Avatar
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    Location: Kennesaw, GA - USA
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    Actually, the early Marantz stand-alone recorder used plain ole CDR blanks. It was a very expensive burner (like $3000 or so). My friend has one. But eventually the consumer level audio burners became available for around $300. The deal was that you had to use the "Music CDR" blanks in them which cost more.


    Darryl
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  7. Member adam's Avatar
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    Location: United States
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    Its all part of a compromise. I know the US does it and I'm sure other countries do it too. Hardware music recorders pay a tax on every machine built and are required to only support music CDRs, and then those music CDRs are taxed as well. If they didn't do this then there'd just be a tax on all cdr media. This way they are only taxing those cdrs used to record music, because no one would buy them except for use on a hardware music recorder....unless they were just confused. I have seen Worst Buy and Circuit Shitty employees tell customers that they will get better quality using music cdrs.

    But realize that this is all in exchange for the right to backup music recordings. Before this compromise (In the US it is the Audio Home Recording Act) it was illegal to backup a music CD you purchased.
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  8. Banned
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    If you are making backups of your music CDs I'd recommend using specialized media. You will notice your music has a crisper sound on the music CD-R. Some can't tell the difference, but I know I can. If there is more than $1 difference between individual discs (Data Vs. Music) I'd go with data CD-Rs. Usually the price difference is 25 or 50 cents which can be justified by a better quality sound reproduction. I've also noticed that my music CD-Rs have a better compatibility with all CD Players. If you've ever burnt a music CD that plays fine in your equipment, but not your friends, you know what I mean.
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  9. Member adam's Avatar
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    ROF there is no quality difference, believe me. Its digital information, how could there be any difference?

    Music CDRs exist for only one reason and that's to implement the royalty system of the AHR (or other country's applicable law). If you read the AHR it talks all about it. The music cdrs just have some sort of id imprinted on them that hardware recorders check for. As far as the music its just 0's and 1's.

    I can't comment on compatibility though, but cdrs in general have very good compatibility and recordable media compatibility is always variable.
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  10. Member dphirschler's Avatar
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    Location: Kennesaw, GA - USA
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    MY understanding is that there is certain coded information written to music CDRs in an area where normal burners can't write. So the recorder looks for that info before allowing the blank to be used. That's the only difference in media. And you can't make your own music CDRs because of where the code is written. But they don't sound any better (or worse) than data CDRs. And they are no more compatible than data CDRs. The players aren't looking for the 'code', only the recorders. The music is still 16 bit/44.1 KHz.


    Darryl
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  11. Member lumis's Avatar
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    good information in this thread (except ROF).. i'm curious about the technical aspects in the differences between music & data cd-r's..
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  12. Banned
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    Maybe it's just my ears and those around me. We've noticed a difference when using higher quality media when watching TV shows too. The quality of burn and the data contained on them is better then if you are using media not designed for such applications. The price difference is negligible, but I've never seen a data or music CDr in the last few years that costs $2 a piece, let alone $2 more than another one.
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  13. Member
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    Location: Atlanta, GA
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    Wow, thanks for all the responses and the discourse. I've always thought that htere was no difference in the discs, but wasn't sure. ROF, since I usually burn CD's for use in my car, it seems to be a moot point as to whether there are any audible differences.
    I don't think that I've ever seen a CD Recorder. Are they still around or did they bite the dust when CD Burners became almost-free give-aways?

    Matt
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  14. Member adam's Avatar
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    I'm not sure where you live but they are pretty much all over the place. They are hardware dupe decks where you stick a cd in one tray and a blank in another and, usually in a very short amount of time, you get a copy. They usually have various different types of inputs too so you can record from different playback devices (tv, cassette player, record player, etc..)

    CDRs and DVDrs are digital storage mediums. The only way they can make those 0's and 1's sound different is if there is actual data loss, either on the medium itself or during the read. This would translate to very noticable skipping, but the quality of the music would still be the same. I mean come on, its the same digital information. It doesn't matter whether its on cdr, dvdr, hard drive, or floppy disk.
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  15. Banned
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    CD Burners and standalone recorders are sold at just about any electronics outlet or electronics section of your favorite department store. They are alive and well. There are alot of people who have no need for DVD burning capability. Those needs aren't going to increase.

    There is always (for the forseeable future) going to be a need for stand alone CD Recorders.

    Recording a radio program is a pain with a DVD recorder.
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  16. Member
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    Originally Posted by adam
    ROF there is no quality difference, believe me. Its digital information, how could there be any difference?
    But you see in the Music CDs the '1's are straighter and the '0's are rounder, thereby giving the 'crisper' sound. In the early days of music CD they attempted to extract atoms from Rice Crispies to make the music CDs- they thought perhaps Rice Crispy atoms would give Crispy sound. That theory was put to rest when they realized that the Rice Crispy atoms drastically increased the snaps, crackles and pops in the music.
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  17. Member
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    Originally Posted by ROF
    You will notice your music has a crisper sound on the music CD-R. Some can't tell the difference, but I know I can.
    I'll bet $10,000 that you can't tell the difference. Assuming that both disks are burned without errors and that the player can read all the data, I'll bet that you couldn't tell the difference if both disks were played without you knowing which was which.

    It's a little like saying that a program burned on a TDK CD runs better in your computer than a program burned on a Maxell disk. All in your mind.
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  18. Member hech54's Avatar
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    But Maxell tapes were much better than TDK tapes...
    It MUST be the same for digital data as well....especially using the digital to digital connections....
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  19. Banned
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    Originally Posted by hech54
    But Maxell tapes were much better than TDK tapes...
    It MUST be the same for digital data as well....especially using the digital to digital connections....
    Exactly it. Some people don't understand that when something is labelled for a specific purpose such as Music CDr, it's not done just because the name sounds cool or other silly biased reasoning. It's done because they are used specifically for music and sound better than data CDs containing music. If you can't tell the difference, so be it. Some people say 320K MP3s sound great, others disagree, myself included. They sound good, but there's a noticeable loss of quality in such data based music.
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  20. Member
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    Originally Posted by ROF
    Originally Posted by hech54
    But Maxell tapes were much better than TDK tapes...
    It MUST be the same for digital data as well....especially using the digital to digital connections....
    Exactly it. Some people don't understand that when something is labelled for a specific purpose such as Music CDr, it's not done just because the name sounds cool or other silly biased reasoning.
    Right- it's done so the RIAA can collect their percentage.

    Originally Posted by ROF
    If you can't tell the difference, so be it.
    There is no difference. If you think you can tell the difference, so be it. I don't care if you want to waste money on disks because you think you can tell the difference. But the fact is that you could not distinguish between disks just by listening. If you think you can- swell. People believe in all kinds of things that aren't true.

    Originally Posted by ROF
    Some people say 320K MP3s sound great, others disagree, myself included. They sound good, but there's a noticeable loss of quality in such data based music.
    Which is a totally different situation. Comparing mp3's with different bitrates isn't like comparing data burned to different disks- it's more like comparing mpeg-2 with a bitrate of 1400 to another of 4700. Then there's a difference in the actual data no matter what kind of disk it's burned to.
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  21. Member hech54's Avatar
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    And most inportantly it's NOT about wasting money for most people....including me. I own a Pioneer CD Recorder that must use Music CD-R's. And if it could use plain CD-R's I would because:
    THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE. It is just data.
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  22. Member lumis's Avatar
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    i think ROF is continuing his baseless arguement to tick you all off. i think it's best if we let ROF live in his own little universe where he thinks music cd-r's sound better than data cd-r's.
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  23. Music CDRs...higher reflectivity index (RI) than data CDRs.

    Pressed Audio CD RI...about 74 (relative number here)
    Music CDR RI..............about 70
    Data CDR RI...............about 66-68

    RI...measure of how well (all things being equal) a player might read a CDR. higher number better of course. Ideally it would be the same as a commercial (Pressed) disc. As you can see the RI between the 2 CDR types is pretty much a moot point. As mentioned some of the $$ from the sales of Music CDRs go to the music industry.

    Qualilty-wise (audio quality) I would like a shipment of whatever the people here are smoking that claim they can hear a difference between the 2. The RI has NOTHING to do with audio quality; just whether a disc can be played back or not (or without skipping, etc). As in all cases I have yet have a data CDR with audio fail in any player (car, home, portable). But hey, if you CLAIM to hear a difference then so be it. One can pretty much get themselves to believe anything they want. Just don't hoodwink the masses here with your GOLDEN EARS (you audiophiles here know what I mean).

    I have both types (Music CDRs were a gift) and yes no difference. as mentioned you are recording 0s and 1s. no logical reason for one to sound "better" than the other. Live Long And Prosper.
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  24. Originally Posted by noki
    Music CDRs...higher reflectivity index (RI) than data CDRs.

    Pressed Audio CD RI...about 74 (relative number here)
    Music CDR RI..............about 70
    Data CDR RI...............about 66-68

    RI...measure of how well (all things being equal) a player might read a CDR. higher number better of course. Ideally it would be the same as a commercial (Pressed) disc. As you can see the RI between the 2 CDR types is pretty much a moot point. As mentioned some of the $$ from the sales of Music CDRs go to the music industry.

    Qualilty-wise (audio quality) I would like a shipment of whatever the people here are smoking that claim they can hear a difference between the 2. The RI has NOTHING to do with audio quality; just whether a disc can be played back or not (or without skipping, etc). As in all cases I have yet have a data CDR with audio fail in any player (car, home, portable). But hey, if you CLAIM to hear a difference then so be it. One can pretty much get themselves to believe anything they want. Just don't hoodwink the masses here with your GOLDEN EARS (you audiophiles here know what I mean).

    I have both types (Music CDRs were a gift) and yes no difference. as mentioned you are recording 0s and 1s. no logical reason for one to sound "better" than the other. Live Long And Prosper.
    nice post!

    thanks.
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  25. Member anubis13's Avatar
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    Location: ohio
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    I regularly use "Data" discs in Marantz and Tascam CD recorders hooked up to mackie boards. I have never had a problem with playback or ripping of these discs. they behave excatly like any other disc as long as they are finalized.
    drink up....the world's about to end
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  26. Member adam's Avatar
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    Those recorders either predate the Audio Home Recording Act, qualify as professional level equipment which is exempt, or are not strictly considered "digital audio recording devices" as defined by the AHRA. Like for instance isn't Tascam equipment mainly for recording your own original content? Maybe they've got alot more products now but I remember having an old Tascam 4 Track recorder and a drum machine.

    If a "digital audio recorder" violated the AHRA by accepting non-music CDRs the manufacturer would have to pay some stiff penalties if caught and they could actually be sued for contributory copyright infringement or inducement of copyright infringement.
    Been around the world and found that only stupid people are breeding.
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  27. As per others.

    The "quality" of music CD-R disc versus normal is all in the mind. It is digital media. If there is a recording problem, it will exhibit in digital artifacts (crackling or skips).

    As for 320 kbit/s MP3, unless there is a problem during the encoding, it is transparent with the source. I don't care how good your ears are, if you are human, you won't be able to tell the difference.

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    Michael Tam
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  28. Member hech54's Avatar
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    It just amazes me that nobody has come up with a way to turn a normal CDR into a Music CDR by now....especially via a computer first...then take it to a recorder.
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  29. Member garryheather's Avatar
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    The only time I can think of inferior media "sounding worse" is if your CD player is making a complete hash of the error correction AND the disc has got so many errors on it that hardly any "real" data remains.

    Some of you may remember Yamaha and Plextor marketed drives that wrote "higher quality" audio CD's by increasing the size of the burn area for each pseudo-pit in an attempt to cut down on jitter and so on. I can't say I could ever hear the difference (I had the Yamaha Audio Master series drive at one point), but my hardware could tell the difference - media that wouldn't play well in the car or on a Walkman type effort often played perfectly well when burnt in this mode (which incidentally limited your burn speed to a whopping 4x and reduced a 74min disc to 63mins).

    I also had access at the time to some professional CD testing equipment and confirmed the tracking errors were significantly reduced, generally regardless of media.

    I feel I should point out that some music on CD-R can sound better than the original... anyone remember Cactus Data Shield ?

    This (and other) forms of copy protection deliberately introduced errors onto the CD that your audio CD player should have been able to skip over and / or correct by "filling in the gaps". The problem with this is some discs were unplayable in some equipment (the CD player in my car went nuts with White Lillies Island before trying to eject it while still spinning), whereas others didn't apply adequate correction and you found music that sounded like you had cotton wool in your ears.

    Oh yes - another thing about CD-R audio discs - chances are they're rated at 1x (ie for recording in real time) or some other low value, which might mean inferior media because I don't think anyone makes that stuff any more, whether it be audio specific or general data use.
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  30. Banned
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    Originally Posted by vitualis
    As for 320 kbit/s MP3, unless there is a problem during the encoding, it is transparent with the source. I don't care how good your ears are, if you are human, you won't be able to tell the difference.
    You are kidding right? While I generally agree that 320K recorded MP3s sound fine, there is a distinct difference between the original CD and the ripped(320K) MP3 version.
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