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Archive for October, 2019

Archiving and storage – still a promising market for CDs and BDs

Thursday, October 10th, 2019
traditional archive and modern cd archive

Traditional archive and modern cd archive

Optical disc media is maintaining its strong position in the archive and storage industry. It seems like it has almost battled paper, microfiche and tape and is ready to face new challenges from hard drives, flash media and cloud – based systems. The global recordable and re-recordable optical disc production reached 18,6 billion disc in 2009 which holds nearly 50 % of global (re-)recordable optical disc production.

The secret of its ongoing success lies in three factors. It has the lowest cost- per-gigabyte compared to solid state and hard disc drives. It’s fully portable and easy to use. In addition, there are a plethora of compatible CD writers and burners available.

The future for optical disc media looks bright, especially that BD and DVD format are joining the game while new markets like video archiving, surveillance, law enforcement and medical services are emerging. The multilayer capability of BD – R provides large data capacity, up to 100 gigabytes on a single disc. It’s perfect for passing archiving, where there is no need for regular updates. The main drawback is its increased instability caused by its multi-layer capability. But there are solutions developed to guarantee the durability and reliability of the discs used by the archive industry. One of them is using 24-carat gold reflective layer, which prevents corrosion and oxidation.

No matter how sophisticated the solutions are, it is still recommended to test the archiving media at least once in two years to assure the data is still readable.

Another opportunity is a newly launched low-reflective M-Disc which uses DVD+R specifications. It allows for permanent storage and the DVD+RW reflectivity makes its production more economical, because less power is required to get enough power absorbed for recording the data.

In order to burn M-disc you need a special M- Writer which can be configured to act like a standard DVD-recordable drive.

However, if you want to be sure that your archives will survive as long as you want, the best option is still to use combined solutions as no media is perfect.

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Replicate or Duplicate?

Thursday, October 3rd, 2019

There are two distinct technologies available for producing Optical Discs, whether CD, DVD or Blu-ray, and the choice of which to use for any given project is not always immediately obvious.

In order to help with that decision, it is important to understand the differences and the effects that those differences can have:

The first thing to remember is that whatever process is used, the data at the beginning and end are exactly the same, though there will be slight differences in the appearance and performance of the finished product.

Duplication is the name given to the process whereby the data are written to individual blank recordable discs using banks of high-speed writers.  Artwork is then typically thermal printed or paper labeled.

Replication is a much more involved process in which a glass master is first created from the original data. This master is used to make metal stamping discs which are used in presses to press the data wholesale onto polycarbonate blanks.  A reflective aluminium layer is then applied, and the discs are then lacquered, sealed and artwork typically silk-screened or offset printed.

All retail discs are replicated.

Replicated discs have no compatibility issues – they will play in all players and drives, whereas duplicated discs will sometimes not play on older stand-alone players or set-top boxes.  Recordable media are also more vulnerable to damage by prolonged exposure to sunlight.

The big advantage of Duplication is very quick turnaround time, and digital printing with no prepress charges, BUT the unit cost is higher than for replication, and duplicates can only have one layer of information, meaning their data capacity is up to 4 times less.

With Replication, the unit costs are lower (after mastering and other setup costs are taken into account), and multilayering is possible so the data capacity is much greater.

Because of the need for mastering etc., however, the turnaround time is longer, and the setup costs make it uneconomical for runs less than 500.

So, the ultimate decision is yours: is a lower price or time more important to you?

In general, though, up to 500, discs will be duplicated; over 10,000, discs will be replicated.  In between, the decision is yours!

Please do not hesitate to call Replicationcentre where our knowledgeable staff will be pleased to advise based on your individual requirements.

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Address: Replication Centre, Gleniffer House, 2 Hall Road, Rochford, Essex, SS4 1NN.    Tel: 01702 530 357    Email: info@replicationcentre.co.uk