Best Blank DVDs

Are brand-name items any better than no-name ones? It’s a question that shoppers have been asking themselves since before the markets were super. has endeavored to enlighten us as to the ways of the blank DVD. Where do they come from? Who makes them? Why are they purple?

Most media is produced by a relative small number of factories, located in several different places. The best media generally comes from Japan and Singapore. The worst typically comes from Taiwan or China (in stores) and Hong Kong (online).

This being said, understand that the media brand means nothing. Apple is a great brand, but they do not make their own discs, instead outsourcing to MXL (Hitachi/Maxell) or MCC (Mitsubishi Chemicals).

It is the media ID that is important, as it reveals the disc manufacturer. Unfortunately, this is not written on packaging or anywhere else. Companies want consumers to be oblivious to this sort of behind-the-scenes information.

In steps DigitalFAQ with an exhaustive list of media IDs rated and matched to manufacturers. You’ll never buy DVDs the same way again. —MEGHANN MARCO

Who makes the disc: Brand vs. Media ID [DigitalFAQ via Lifehacker]


Edit Your Comment

  1. cptdeez says:

    Wow, welcome to 3 years ago. I’ve been using that site since I first got a dvd burner.

  2. bambino says:

    Ok, I seriously did not need a Goatse reference while eating lunch.

  3. bambino says:

    Ok, I seriously did not need a goatse reference during lunch.

  4. Meg Marco says:

    I’m sorry, but I saw it and it was too good to pass up.

  5. cptdeez says:

    Why is this being posted here and on gizmodo like it’s news? I’ve been using this site for years now. Did Lord Smurf just hire a marketing firm or something?

  6. Wow! Great article! In my experience, the best media for a drive is not the same for everyone. Some media seems to work better for certain drives.

    I’ve always had bad experiences with Ritek in my Pioneer 108A, the DL’s would never (not even once) make it to the finishing stage without corrupting. However, Memorex discs (almost universally panned for poor compatibility and performance) work perfectly with my Pioneer.

    Overall though, and the general consensus on the DVD boards I have frequented, is that Verbatim is king(particularly the DLs).

  7. bambino says:

    Sorry for the double post (anyone else getting long comment load times?), but since it was you meghann, I guess you get a pass.

  8. brokenboy says:

    Weird. I’ve had a few DVD burners over the last few years and apparently have bought nothing but total junk discs. According to that article, I shouldn’t expect any more than a 50% success rate. I’ve probably burned 200 discs over that time and as far as I can remember, I’ve never had a problem.

    If you really couldn’t get more than half of the discs to work, places would be taking them back by the truckload. I think this article is really focused on archiving, not just day-to-day use.

  9. Papa K says:

    Taiyo Yuden, baby!

    I’ve burnt well over 150 DVDs – and only three failed because of software issues, not the media itself. – best place to get them