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BitBurners MediaBase - DVD recordable media quality database

Discussion in 'DVD±R media' started by cd-rw.org, Jan 21, 2007.

  1. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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    We at the BitBurners have been working on a smarter way to submit and collect DVD-R media error rate quality scans. Many websites have good discussions on their forums, but this way the information is fragmented to several sites and test results are not organized in easy to find manner.

    As a solution, and I must say finally as this was planned about 2 years ago, we have developed the BitBurners MediaBase. It is a DVD media quality database that will collect Nero CD-DVD Speed input, along with your subjective ratings and textual reviews/comments.

    We have just now entered a public alpha testing phase, to see how the platform works, to collect some data and to iron out the last bugs and polish some features.

    However, in order to pull this off we need plenty of support from the DVD recording scene. I hope admins/mods don't mind me posting it here.

    Check out the service and instructions:
    http://forum.bitburners.com/index.php?topic=698.0
     
  2. DVDBack23

    DVDBack23 Administrator Staff Member

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    Thanks for this, will have a look
     
  3. cincyrob

    cincyrob Active member

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    yes this sound like something i can get into. i do like to use the nero cd/dvd speed scans alot..lol
     
  4. cincyrob

    cincyrob Active member

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    wow this site is awsome breaks down the nero scans nicely.. plenty of info here for someone wanting to learn about the scans
     
  5. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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    Many thanks for the positive feedback Rob. The database is a rough alpha at the moment, and we have many ideas what we will in the future. We will improve the data hierarchy so that the search results are shown better, we will add support for Nero CD-DVD Speed Data transfer rate scans and so on.

    But what we really would like to see at this point is some test driving of the database, and users submitting a few scans. It is greatly appreciated if you could spins some discs with CD-DVD Speed and submit the results.
     
  6. cincyrob

    cincyrob Active member

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    i have done 3 test so far. one a benchmark, one a quality test and another benchmark on a different type media.. my problem is at the site getting the info to you guys... i know its in th ealpha stages, but do i need to use a site like imagehosting or photobucket to post the results there?
     
  7. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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  8. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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    We made first updates to the database, and now it is also possible to include the data transfer rate scans.

    The result will look like this:
    http://media.bitburners.com/en/mediabase/datawrite_classic_dvd_r_4x/ricohjpn_r01/

    We would like to see the MediaBase as "ImageShack of DVD scans". A place were people can conveniently upload their DVD scans, and linking from forums is easy. A centralized DVD scan storage that is easy to use, well organized and searchable. When we have large amount of data, we can make very interesting statistic reports.

    But the truth is that soon we have added every single disc that we have to the database. So we will be needing more user input to increase the amount of the data, making the service more comprehensive.

    http://media.bitburners.com (click Add review, top right corner)
     
  9. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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    Okay, our latest updated revision is numbered as Alpha 3 and it contains major layout changes. The Quality scan submitting procedure is now well documented, so the it should be quite easy to follow now. Few more discs have been added, and more will come next week as I receive some samples.

    Still, more user input is needed in order to gather a larger variety of data. Please contribute.

    http://media.bitburners.com
     
  10. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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    Great news and a major update!

    Erik Deppe supported our project by adding DVD recorder information fields to the Quality scan summary report of Nero CD-DVD Speed. The MediaBase is now updated to Beta-1, and the recorder and firmware information is now parsed and collected to the database. This means that the CD-DVD Speed version 4.7.5.0 should be used from now on.

    Here you can see a demonstration of Pioneer DVR-112 toasting an Imation (MCC) disc at 18x speed: http://media.bitburners.com/en/mediabase/imation__dvd_r_16x/mcc_004/

    Not all views are yet tweaked to utilize this new data, but we continue updating the MediaBase today and following days.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2007
  11. JoeRyan

    JoeRyan Active member

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    One suggestion...change the information to a database of compatibility rather than quality. Scans tell users how well the drive is reading the information recorded to the disc. The scan cannot tell the user the quality of the drive, the medium, the software, or the reader. A bad recording can be indicative of a bad disc or of an incompatibility between the disc and the drive, even if the disc is "perfect." The assumption that a bad scan is automatically an indication of a poor quality disc is a mistake often made on this website and is one reason why the "quality ratings" on digitalfaq's site are so misleading.

    Compatibility is an important concern, and there is no good place to find a decent listing of which discs work with which drive/firmware combinations. If your site lists the firmware of the drives used in the scans as well as the MID code of the medium being tested, that could be very useful. The emphasis should be on the compatibility of the disc/drive/firmware combination, not on a judgment of disc quality because disc quality requires far more sophisticated test equipment. Reports of "poor quality" discs seldom include the name of the drive and its firmware. When they do, it is almost always an obvious mismatch--the drive with that firmware does not support that MID code. Any judgment on disc quality in that case is premature; no one can tell if the disc is any good because the drive does not work with it. A comprehensive database of MID codes, drive models, and drive firmware would be very useful, especially if readers understand that the database is a recommendation of compatibility, not necessarily quality. That would be something that consumers have long needed.
     
  12. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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    JoeRyan,

    That is some excellent commentary you made. We have to think about the branding compatibility vs. quality database.

    On the other hand, the database can reveal low media quality. If a certain media scores poorly against several drives, it is safe to say that the quality is not good. There are a lot of low grade medias/brands on the market. It is also interesting to study how does the quality vary - of course different drives match with different media, but if and when we have enough data we will start to see if the quality is varying and/or the MID is changing. In the past we have seem some media brands to deliver good quality at first, and when they have achieved some market hype the manufacturer or quality grade has changed, and the media has gone downhill in terms of quality.

    From Beta-1 version with the new Nero CD-DVD Speed the database is always collecting the recorder and firmware revision info. However, there is a lot of data currently that has been produced with older CD-DVD Speed that lack this info, but it should improve in time.

    We are not yet fully utilizing the data, but that is just a matter of developing smart searches, perhaps pre-defined reports in order to produce interesting output for the user. The data structure however IS there, it is just a matter of developing more intelligent searches and gathering much more data, in terms of volume and diversity.

    We have received some user input recently, but much much more is needed and would be greatly appreciated. So the best way to steer the database into the right direction is to submit some more data. The submitting process is not well documented and should be quite painless - takes just few minutes per disc (and of course the time to do the actual test).

    http://media.bitburners.com
     
  13. JoeRyan

    JoeRyan Active member

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    "If a certain medium scores poorly against several drives" it is still NOT safe to say that the quality is poor. Those several drives can all be incompatible with that MID code. Taiyo Yuden's DVD+R 16X media are probably no worse than anything they made before, but many drives have problems with them because the media are late to market and not included in the firmware tables. Calling them poor quality would be inaccurate. Calling them somewhat incompatible would be a more accurate assessment.

    MID codes must be included with brands to distinguish A-grade material from B-grade. A manufacturer with a particular MID code can make excellent quality discs for its own brand and others but also sell off questionable production to brands who care less about their reputation. The MID codes will be the same, but the quality can deviate. Readers should watch for the brand names and not just the MID codes.

    There is also the problem of the same MID code being made on different production lines. The MID code refers only to the stamper being used and the type of dye listed in the field codes in some cases. However, production lines from different line manufacturers can produce different quality when using identical stampers and dyes. This is an interesting problem for manufacturers, but it does reflect on quality inconsistency if they do not assure users that the end product from various lines performs identically.

    The drive and Nero CD/DVD Speed contribute to the quality of the scan results. Pioneer makes excellent drives, but Nero scans on Pioneer drives tend to show much higher error rates on a disc than other drives would show for that same disc. This is a concern only if users believe the test results are absolute data rather than relative data. Incompatible drive/medium combinations will still show poor results and very low "quality" scores. As long as readers understand that the quality score refers to the recording quality and not necessarily to the disc or the drive, that's fine. A low quality score can happen to both bad discs and good discs if they are incompatible with a drive.
     
  14. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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    JohnRyan,

    Ok, if there is a disc that delivers good absolute quality, meaning that it is technically very good in every way. But if this disc is not supported properly by drives' firmwares, the end results are not good and the customer is dissatisfied.

    Is the disc of good quality or not? Isn't quality defined by what the disc is able to deliver for the consumer?

    Of course we are aware of the limitations of the MID information. Same MIDs are even produced by different manufacturers. On the other hand the database does support batch codes as well, but not many submitters have provided those. Batch codes tell a whole lot more about the origin of the disc.

    Pioneer is not a very good drive for scans. Liteon of course is recommended. Support for Plextools in the future would be interesting, but Plextools would need to improve in terms output. The database is of course moderated, so we can react if we start to see faulty results - the database collects the information of the recording drive as well as the scanning drive.

     
  15. JoeRyan

    JoeRyan Active member

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    Quality is determined not by customer satisfaction but by almost 100 different specifications defined by standards committees and by how uniformly a disc conforms to those standards. Compatibility is determined by how well firmware engineers have accommodated the parameters of a disc type determined by its MID code in the write strategy. Customers are satisfied when a good quality disc performs well in their drives, recorders, and players. When the discs do not perform well, they automatically blame the quality of the medium first, then the drive.

    Marketing people should believe that it is the customer who determines the quality of a product, and they should act in every way possible to satisfy the customer. I have had problems in the past with technical engineers arguing about tape sensitivity, for example. Sensitivity is not a quality parameter, but consumers thought it was--so sensitivity had to be increased to satisfy customers. It is a bit more complicated with drives and optical media because there are political games being played behind the scenes. Some drive manufacturers have intentionally made some discs look bad for political and marketing purposes. The most notorious was Panasonic drives' refusal to play any DVD+R disc because they violated the DVD Forum spec. Changing the book type settings got around that problem and made the +R discs even more attractive to users. Media manufacturers do all in their power to get drive manufacturers to include their MID codes in drives; but when they are not included due to a shortage of time in order to get a drive to market fast or due to political considerations, those ignored MID codes produce unsatisfactory results whether or not the discs are any good. In these cases we must distinguish QUALITY from COMPATIBILITY.
     
  16. cd-rw.org

    cd-rw.org Active member

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    You know, the more I think of it, the more I like the "compatibility database" concept. I actually does actually describe the idea better, while quality can be subjective and relative or objective and absolute.

    Thanks for the great input!

    Speaking of media compatibility, I have been uploading Pioneer DVR-112 results during this evening - still some to go, so the list will update but the URL will be same: http://media.bitburners.com/en/mediabase/?search=PIONEER+DVD-RW++DVR-112
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2007
  17. LOCOENG

    LOCOENG Moderator Staff Member

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    I prefer this method of thinking personally.
     
  18. 300bowler

    300bowler Regular member

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    As do I :)
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2007

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