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  1. Member
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    I'm new here and have an audio/video recording studio. I used to have a bad habit of not labeling CD's and DVD's during my workload and just forget about them when I "think" I am finished with the project. I have a mountain of unlabeled discs. I was recently looking for a recent video project that I shot here in studio, and found many discs where I can visually see the burned scarring on the disc, but all my computers and DVD recorder/players indicate that I have inserted a blank disc. My first thought was that perhaps I failed to finalize, but that didn't work. On a couple occasions, I would put these unplayable discs into my duplicator, make a copy, and the copy will play. These discs have no scratches, I can see they were burned, but just won't play on anything and show up as a blank disc. I know that I must have played them at least once, or they would have gone in the trash. Everything gets labeled now, but anyone have any thoughts as to how to retrieve this video footage?
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  2. Member DB83's Avatar
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    You can try a program such as isobuster which will tell you if indeed there is content on the disk. The paid version should then be able to extract that content.

    My guess is that you used low-grade media.
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    I use TY gold discs for audio mastering and video. On my Mac the system profiler indicates content on the disc. TY is/was the industry standard for audio. TY recently ceased making CD/DVD medium. I normally go through a spindle of 100 each month, and my computers and players will still play dvd's I made on cheap target bought discs 10 years ago. I am really stumped on this. Thanks for the reply
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  4. Member DB83's Avatar
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    You had better read this:

    http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/media/5718-confused-gold-taiyo.html

    In a word, 'All that glitters is not gold'

    CDRs are a different matter. But we are not concerned with these in this topic.

    Sorrry I did not realise you were on a MAC. Not sure if there is a version of Isobuster for that platform.
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    It is possible to use good media and still have problems reading it later on if the burn was not optimum. The rule of thumb is to burn at about half the rated speed (i.e. burn 16x media at 8x). Maybe the write speed was set too high or too low for that particular DVD media. If the burner was worn out, that could result in a poor burn too.
    Ignore list: hello_hello, tried, TechLord
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    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    It is possible to use good media and still have problems reading it later on if the burn was not optimum. The rule of thumb is to burn at about half the rated speed (i.e. burn 16x media at 8x). Maybe the write speed was set too high or too low for that particular DVD media. If the burner was worn out, that could result in a poor burn too.
    I agree and like with audio, I only burn at 1x.
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    Originally Posted by DB83 View Post
    You had better read this:

    http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/media/5718-confused-gold-taiyo.html

    In a word, 'All that glitters is not gold'

    CDRs are a different matter. But we are not concerned with these in this topic.

    Sorrry I did not realise you were on a MAC. Not sure if there is a version of Isobuster for that platform.
    Thanks for that link. I will look into it when time permits. Most of my discs are writeable white faced discs. I am running low on blank media (DVD's). What is considered the best low error rate DVD-R that you recommend?
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  8. Member DB83's Avatar
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    ^^ Most on here will agree that Verbatim (not life series) are dependable media.

    But surely you are not burning at 1x. I did that back in the days when media was rated at 1x and burners were also not so 'fast'. And, yes, I also got un-readable media.

    Verbatim will be rated at 16x. But as u_q suggests I never burn at higher than 8x.
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    Yes. I always use 1x. With audio, if I spend a week mastering someones project, I am not in a hurry to burn it. My mac has 1x to I think 16x. With video imovie, idvd or any other dvd program, I still burn at 1x
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    Originally Posted by CHANCE View Post
    Originally Posted by usually_quiet View Post
    It is possible to use good media and still have problems reading it later on if the burn was not optimum. The rule of thumb is to burn at about half the rated speed (i.e. burn 16x media at 8x). Maybe the write speed was set too high or too low for that particular DVD media. If the burner was worn out, that could result in a poor burn too.
    I agree and like with audio, I only burn at 1x.
    If you are using the Gold Taiyo Yuden DVD media my search engine found, it's 16x.

    Unless you are using 2x or 2.4x DVD media, burning at 1x is potentially a source of problems. DVD media that is designed to burn at much higher speeds can react poorly to burning at 1x. http://www.digitalfaq.com/guides/media/dvd-media-concepts.htm
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    What I don't understand is that I know for certain that I played the dvd's in question on the machine that recorded them and on my mac for editing in final cut pro, quicktime pro, and imovie, but now show as blank. I can see on my mac system profiler that there is indeed data on these discs, but I can't seem to retrieve this data. The videos were recorded on a standard consumer dvd recorder that I have never had problems with. I just did a test recording with no problems so I know the machine is presently working. By process of elimination, the machine seems fine. The discs in question have burn scarring that is "clearly" visible, but show as blank in several computers (mac, PC, and Linux) and several dvd players. I would like to know what happened as to avoid future problems. Some of my early CD and DVD's that I made when discs were a new media (and expensive) years ago, still play even though some are scratched, old, and not well kept.
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  12. If you have access to a Windows PC you can temporarily modify, try downloading VLC Media Player and/or a trial version of CyberLink PowerDVD Player from the VideoHelp software section. PowerDVD has saved my ass on several occasions with its uncanny ability to decipher screwy dvds that are otherwise unplayable (unfinalized, poorly authored, burn errors, defective, damaged). VLC is my fallback player.

    If PowerDVD or VLC won't play your discs, they're probably a lost cause. If they do play them, you may be able to recapture their contents to a hard drive. At least, you could connect the video outputs of the PC to your DVD recorder and make a dub (this might require an additional converter dongle).

    Recordable dvd can be an unpredictably fragile medium. Sometimes you burn a disc, take it out of the drive, stomp on it with your feet, put it in the microwave, run it over with your car, and find it still plays perfectly. Other times, a disc seems to play perfectly right after burning, then the next time you try to play it you find it is garbage (i.e. my recorders will trash their own RW discs randomly during loading, after three or four passes).
    Last edited by orsetto; 6th Dec 2016 at 20:37.
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    The only other recommended blank (other than Taiyo Yuden) is Verbatim Datalife (AZO), orange wrapper for DVD-R, purple wrapper for DVD+R. Reccommend stocking up as they're getting harder to find, especially Verbatim.

    You mention labling your discs. Just to clarify, you're not using stick on labels (of any kind) are you? Even the smallest stick on label has been known to cause discs to become unreadable.
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    Originally Posted by orsetto View Post
    If you have access to a Windows PC you can temporarily modify, try downloading VLC Media Player and/or a trial version of CyberLink PowerDVD Player from the VideoHelp software section. PowerDVD has saved my ass on several occasions with its uncanny ability to decipher screwy dvds that are otherwise unplayable (unfinalized, poorly authored, burn errors, defective, damaged). VLC is my fallback player.

    If PowerDVD or VLC won't play your discs, they're probably a lost cause. If they do play them, you may be able to recapture their contents to a hard drive. At least, you could connect the video outputs of the PC to your DVD recorder and make a dub (this might require an additional converter dongle).

    Recordable dvd can be an unpredictably fragile medium. Sometimes you burn a disc, take it out of the drive, stomp on it with your feet, put it in the microwave, run it over with your car, and find it still plays perfectly. Other times, a disc seems to play perfectly right after burning, then the next time you try to play it you find it is garbage (i.e. my recorders will trash their own RW discs randomly during loading, after three or four passes).
    I downloaded VLC for mac and I tried it on just one unreadable disc but still notheing
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    Originally Posted by lingyi View Post
    The only other recommended blank (other than Taiyo Yuden) is Verbatim Datalife (AZO), orange wrapper for DVD-R, purple wrapper for DVD+R. Reccommend stocking up as they're getting harder to find, especially Verbatim.

    You mention labling your discs. Just to clarify, you're not using stick on labels (of any kind) are you? Even the smallest stick on label has been known to cause discs to become unreadable.
    No they are white faced printable discs that I failed to label.
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    Someone from pro recording workshop forum that I am part of, turned me on to this and I thought to share it here. It looks promising. https://www.powerdatarecovery.com/index.html
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    Be careful, your last two posts are bordering on spam.

    Giving you the benefit of doubt, have you tried ISObuster as suggested. Unlike the software you linked to, it's a proven and highly regarded program, epsecially on this forum.

    Bottom line for any software is that if the disc is unreadable, there's zero chance of recovery.
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  19. Member DB83's Avatar
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    +1

    We often have new members with issues which suddenly can be fixed by software which they provide the link for. These 'members' are little more than reps of the company that sell the software.
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    I was not aware that the member who was suggesting ISObuster was a rep for the company and it doesn't matter to me. I am only looking for a solution. For my situation, ISO is PC only and I am on an old Mac G-4 (10.4.11). and an imac (10.6.8) I have to use my old mac because I have audio software that I was beta testing for Bias before they went out of business. I can't transfer this software to another computer because to do that, I would need a transfer, and since Bias is no longer in business, I have to baby my old G-4. Bias Peak-Pro is awesome for audio. I came to "this" board from someone who PM'd me on a board of audio pros that I have been a member for years. Heres the link (not spam) http://prorecordingworkshop.lefora.com/topic/19409053/CDDVD#.WEmRBIXXQUs . I only shared those 2 links thinking it might be of interest to some.
    lingyi wrote: "Bottom line for any software is that if the disc is unreadable, there's zero chance of recovery". Well,, my original post stated that some of my burned discs now show up blank. It now makes me nervous storing on discs. Years ago I recorded video on 3/4" tape cassettes, and they still play as do my 2" audio 24 track tapes. I'm now thinking to transfer important data to SSHD, but who knows how long those will store information. Thanks for the tips and suggestions. If anything comes to mind, please post here. I am out of ideas. I am more an audio person than video.
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    ^^ And sarcasm, especially from a new member, is not appreciated.

    We give our time to help. And that is what you got. The recc for using isobuster was qualified when it was appreciated you used a Mac. But even with a Mac, ok certain ones, and have no specific knowledge here, Windows can be installed. Or even, if these disks are important to you, and you can not even borrow a Windows PC/Laptop, you might consider engaging a repair shop to taking a look at them.

    Unfortunately with a Mac your software options are severely restricted. But do come back here if that suggested software, from the given links, does work
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  22. I totally "get" the part about you needing to keep your ancient Macs going in order to run irreplaceable software or hardware: I maintain a Mac Museum myself for just that purpose. But I'm also a realist: Mac got shot to death in shallow waters, BY APPLE ITSELF, quite a few years ago: what was once the premiere platform for A/V and graphics got sidelined into being glorified docking stations for portable toys. Steve Jobs blew Mac into the weeds of irrelevance long before he died: today, virtually none of the critical utilities and top apps required for A/V are available for it. Windows PC took over those categories completely.

    So (respectfully), it is no longer credible to take the position of "well, I'm on Mac, so thanks but no thanks to the Windows suggestions". There are no Mac-based solutions for problematic DVDs or BluRays: period, end of discussion. If you cannot or will not temporarily switch to a PC, your efforts are doomed and you may as well just discard those discs and forget the whole thing. VLC for Mac is not as good as VLC for Windows, the most capable PowerDVD version is only on Windows, DVD salvage and rescue utilities like ISObuster are Windows-only. Some low-level, complex file salvage utilities are available for Linux, but thats yet another platform and that salvage software has a learning curve.

    These days, you can pick up a second-hand Windows 7 PC for practically nothing (perhaps not a laptop, but I see small desktops being given away free or left on the street every week). Pick one up, download ISObuster and PowerDVD, see if you get anywhere. If not, no harm done: your outlay was minimal and you'll know you really did all you could to salvage your discs. Going forward, always make at least two copies of each disc on different brands of blank (one should always be Verbatim AZO). Back up the files to at least two external hard drives (and perhaps a couple USB memory sticks just for laughs). Consider cloud storage as well.

    I agree, the much-maligned "old school" analog tech had some advantages in durability (if not reproduction quality): I've got TDK VHS tapes I recorded back in 1981 that still play flawlessly. But today, we're overloaded with digital data that perversely has no reliable storage options. Burnable optical discs are unpredictable at best, hard drives can only be stored for so long before needing to re-migrate, solid state long-term viability is barely better than hdd (if not worse). We're long overdue for a new data storage paradigm thats affordable and and dependable: maybe something great will appear within the next decade. For the moment, diversification of storage media and locations is key.
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    Originally Posted by orsetto View Post
    I totally "get" the part about you needing to keep your ancient Macs going in order to run irreplaceable software or hardware: I maintain a Mac Museum myself for just that purpose. But I'm also a realist: Mac got shot to death in shallow waters, BY APPLE ITSELF, quite a few years ago: what was once the premiere platform for A/V and graphics got sidelined into being glorified docking stations for portable toys. Steve Jobs blew Mac into the weeds of irrelevance long before he died: today, virtually none of the critical utilities and top apps required for A/V are available for it. Windows PC took over those categories completely.

    So (respectfully), it is no longer credible to take the position of "well, I'm on Mac, so thanks but no thanks to the Windows suggestions". There are no Mac-based solutions for problematic DVDs or BluRays: period, end of discussion. If you cannot or will not temporarily switch to a PC, your efforts are doomed and you may as well just discard those discs and forget the whole thing. VLC for Mac is not as good as VLC for Windows, the most capable PowerDVD version is only on Windows, DVD salvage and rescue utilities like ISObuster are Windows-only. Some low-level, complex file salvage utilities are available for Linux, but thats yet another platform and that salvage software has a learning curve.

    These days, you can pick up a second-hand Windows 7 PC for practically nothing (perhaps not a laptop, but I see small desktops being given away free or left on the street every week). Pick one up, download ISObuster and PowerDVD, see if you get anywhere. If not, no harm done: your outlay was minimal and you'll know you really did all you could to salvage your discs. Going forward, always make at least two copies of each disc on different brands of blank (one should always be Verbatim AZO). Back up the files to at least two external hard drives (and perhaps a couple USB memory sticks just for laughs). Consider cloud storage as well.

    I agree, the much-maligned "old school" analog tech had some advantages in durability (if not reproduction quality): I've got TDK VHS tapes I recorded back in 1981 that still play flawlessly. But today, we're overloaded with digital data that perversely has no reliable storage options. Burnable optical discs are unpredictable at best, hard drives can only be stored for so long before needing to re-migrate, solid state long-term viability is barely better than hdd (if not worse). We're long overdue for a new data storage paradigm thats affordable and and dependable: maybe something great will appear within the next decade. For the moment, diversification of storage media and locations is key.
    Thank you for your reply
    You are absolutely correct that sooner or later I will need to stay up with the times. With my old mac, I tried to clone the HD, but for some reason, the software "knows" it is a clone and won't work. I do have pc's and tried ISObuster with no success. I have Linux installed in another PC and tried OGMrip with success on only some DVD;s
    . I have been on mac from the beginning to a 2VX to a G-3, G-4, and G-5. I still use some software that is OS-9 LOL. I am mostly a busy 24 track audio studio, but every session I record, I document with video. I once had a situation where the guitar track sound drastically changed in the middle of a song. Viewing the video revealed that the guitar player knocked over the mic in front of his amp. It's amazing to me that most of the places I use to duplicate and print my client's CD's, have purchased antique vintage vinyl presses to manufacture vinyl LP records. There seems to be a resurgence of the analog sound. As I am writing this, I am trying a demo version of "321Soft Data Recovery for Mac". It's slow, but I'll report back just in case it might be of interest to anyone. As of now, I see a lot of "DiskErrorcounter=770" in the log messages. I have to wait till the scanning is finished
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    Originally Posted by CHANCE View Post
    I was not aware that the member who was suggesting ISObuster was a rep for the company and it doesn't matter to me. I am only looking for a solution. For my situation, ISO is PC only and I am on an old Mac G-4 (10.4.11). and an imac (10.6.8) I have to use my old mac because I have audio software that I was beta testing for Bias before they went out of business. I can't transfer this software to another computer because to do that, I would need a transfer, and since Bias is no longer in business, I have to baby my old G-4. Bias Peak-Pro is awesome for audio. I came to "this" board from someone who PM'd me on a board of audio pros that I have been a member for years. Heres the link (not spam) http://prorecordingworkshop.lefora.com/topic/19409053/CDDVD#.WEmRBIXXQUs . I only shared those 2 links thinking it might be of interest to some.
    lingyi wrote: "Bottom line for any software is that if the disc is unreadable, there's zero chance of recovery". Well,, my original post stated that some of my burned discs now show up blank. It now makes me nervous storing on discs. Years ago I recorded video on 3/4" tape cassettes, and they still play as do my 2" audio 24 track tapes. I'm now thinking to transfer important data to SSHD, but who knows how long those will store information. Thanks for the tips and suggestions. If anything comes to mind, please post here. I am out of ideas. I am more an audio person than video.
    Thank you for posting the link to the forum you got the recommendation from. My apologies for the suspicion, but there are some very clever (or at least they think they're clever) spammers active here. Interestingly, the next poster on the forum you linked to recommends ISOBuster, so two votes for that!

    As for SSD as an archive medium, I posted about some findings and my personal opinions here: https://forum.videohelp.com/threads/378322-The-(In)Famous-Backblaze-Hard-Drive-Reliabil...2015?p=2444159

    A Google search for "SSD archive" brings up articles that have the general consensus that SSDs may last up to 10 years in storage and not suitable for long term storage. FWIW, I've been alternating between two SSDs as by boot drive for several years. Keeping a known good clean Windows install on the spare an swapping out every 6 months or when something happens (i.e. highly malicious virus detected or bad program install / update).

    I'm sure SameSelf will be hopping in here soon rambling about the dangers of "spinning rust", but IMHO, the best (and most cost effective for multi-terabyte) archiving are regular HDDs (at least two sets), in addiiton to optical discs AND Cloud storage, fullling the 1-2-3 (copies) backup strategy.
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    Wow...sorry all for the spelling errors in my previous post. I promise I kan spel gud!
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