Advice for cd/dvd burning

Shade-tepes

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Hey guys how are u all today?
So, I have a laptop and I want to buy a external cd/DVD burner for game backups.
However I don't know as to what exactly I should get or try.
I have a ps2, sega dreamcast, nintendo wii, and a ps1.
I would like to make backups for these consoles, but I don't know what disks to get and whether or not any external burner I get can make backups for these consoles.
Any help or advice would be awesome!.
Thx in advance and take care.
 

KleinesSinchen

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Not sure if I understand your question correctly. I'll just talk about some topics concerning backups on optical discs.

and whether or not any external burner I get can make backups for these consoles.
Any CD/DVD burner can burn images of PS1/2 Wii/GC and Dreamcast games to CD-R/DVD±R. The question is if those backups are gonna work in the consoles. Generally speaking a modchip is(was?) required most of the time to have backups boot exactly like legit games. No burner is able to 1:1 copy games so that the backups are simply accepted as genuine. Disc copy protections for consoles are a beast compared to most disc based DRM on PC.

I can't give you any advise concerning external burners since I don't use them. I've always preferred full-sized drives over slim or laptop drives since the latter often gave me trouble (not long-lived; slower reading because of limited rotation speed). Nowadays with the decline of optical media there is not much choice. If you don't need any BD functions such a drive is very cheap anyway so you can't make a big mistake. Just get a drive and happy burning!

but I don't know what disks to get
In my experience consoles have low quality optical drives. Error prone, picky with discs, not fault tolerant (scratches). Trial and error might be needed. I have very good experiences with Verbatim media. Just try some brands. Prefer DVD-R over DVD+R to eliminate the need for "bit setting" or "book type setting". Consoles will often not accept DVD+R book type and you will have to adjust this anytime inserting a blank DVD+R.
Note that not all blank discs are the same. Some use very bad quality dyes and get unreadable after a few years (I've had a batch of DVD-R that collectively failed after just 6 months 😡).

Rewritable (RW) media generally do not work in consoles at all (or very poorly). That is annoying because testing things out always wastes a disc.

I won't provide links for everything but you'll find everything easily with any search engine. I'll just mark keywords in bold

Dumping discs:
  • PlayStation 1/2 use standard CD/DVD (but with markings a burner can't replicate). Can simply be read with PC drives
    • LibCrypt protected PlayStation 1 games might give you trouble. Make sure to read the originals RAW+Sub96 and burn the discs RAW-DAO
  • Dreamcast GD dumping isn't easy. Look it up
  • GameCube and Wii games are bested dumped with a CleanRip on an RVL-001 (supports GC and Wii)
    • Some old LG drives (IDE connection) can dump GC/Wii discs with Rawdump or Friidump → forget it if you don't already have an old computer with such a drive
Starting backups with software methods:
  • If your Dreamcast is compatible to MIL-CD it is possible to burn self-booting discs
    • GD-ROMs (Gigabyte disc) obviously can hold more than a CD-R (700MB). Often images found online are missing cutscenes or similar to make them fit on regular CDs. Non-standard CD-R can hold 800MB or 870MB (requires using the overburn feature as they still state to have only 702/703MB to comply with the standard). Modern DVD burners should be able to successfully burn CDs with narrow tracks. Theoretically a Dreamcast should read them as GD-ROM has even more narrow track. Don't expect old audio CD players to like those special CDs
  • PS2 games (DVD games, not CD) can be patched with FreeDVDBoot. Only certain PS2 models at the moment. With FreeMCBoot and ESR patcher almost every PS2 can simply boot DVD-R backups
    • Loading games from internal HDD (fat models only) is arguable faster and better than discs
    • All slim models have Ethernet. Loading from network (smb share) works pretty well → search for it. Requires some work to set up
  • MechaPwn on the PS2 (models SCPH-5xxxx and higher) can enable loading out-of-region and CD-R for PS1 games as well as PS2 "Master Discs" (setting the console type to a DTL makes it a development machine allowing backups this way)
  • GC/Wii discs, also called Nintendo Optical Discs are NOT standard DVDs. However, early Wii models can be convinced with software methods to read DVD-ROM (video) and DVD-R as well as DVD+R with booktype set to DVD-ROM. → Neogamma boots such backups perfectly. Newer Wii consoles (all non-white, all RVL-101, all RVL-201 as well as all Wii U) have drives that are unable to read standard DVDs
    • Other than testing and "I want something physical to touch" it is a better idea to load GC backups with Nintendont and Wii backups with any USB loader. Loading games without discs is faster, prevents wearing down the drive and you don't have to swap discs. use ModMii or wii.guide for softmodding a Wii. Works on all Wii consoles where DVD backups only work on old models
    • Without modchip DVD backup loading is limited to 3x (instead of 6x) DVD speed. Longer loading times and stuttering/skipping cutscenes may occur
  • FreePSXBoot and Tonyhax will enable American and European PS1 consoles to read backups from CD-R. Requires loading the exploit on each boot. The backups will not boot on their own like legit games without modchip
    • Anti-mod games might cause trouble but Tonyhax can work around this. A Tonyhax boot disc is an alternative for PS1 consoles with old, non-stealth modchips.


Good luck and have fun!
 
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Jayro

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Honestly for most consoles, it's just easier and better to get a GDEMU to replace the laser assembly. I want one for my PS1 eventually, but lack the micro-soldering skills. I'll have to have mine sent out as a service.
 
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tech3475

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Personally, I’d just look at going discless where possible, especially given how problematic disc drives can get in time.

If you have a phat PS2, I’d get a HDD adapter and use OPL.

For the Dreamcast I’d get a GDEMU, although given how hard getting an ’official’ one can be, be aware there are 1/2 games (I know of) where there are known issues on clones with older firmware.

The PS1 has ODEs available, but as Jayro says they all require soldering. So for this you may want to (for now) use discs unless you can handle that kind of soldering or willing to ship the motherboard off. This is presuming you have a method to execute the disc such as Tonyhax or the MC exploit.

For burning, typically the advice is to just use high quality media at a low burn speed and verify afterwords.

It‘s only when it comes to Dual Layer DVDs and especially XGD3 (Xbox 360) that burning can become more complicated.
 
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MockyLock

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Honestly for most consoles, it's just easier and better to get a GDEMU to replace the laser assembly. I want one for my PS1 eventually, but lack the micro-soldering skills. I'll have to have mine sent out as a service.
GDEMU is fo Dreamcast only.
Like @tech3475 says above, other ODE have other names.
 

MockyLock

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Oh many consoles have ODE (and many ODE).
ODE are usually replacements hardware for disc readers.
It would be too long to list all the ODEs, but almost any common disc based system has its own ODE.
 

KleinesSinchen

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This is presuming you have a method to execute the disc such as Tonyhax or the MC exploit.
Slim PS2+FreeDVDBoot is an easy entry point for preparing FreePSXBoot (with either Tonyhax or Unirom). In the worst case, if there is no other entry point available one could use the swap trick on a PS1… which admittedly is neither good for the discs nor the drive.

For burning, typically the advice is to just use high quality media at a low burn speed and verify afterwords.
I've seen so many different advises concerning writing speed that I don't know what to think about this anymore. What I can say is that with currently available blank media (and writers), you often don't have the choice anymore. Most DVD±R offer accept 8x and 16x writing speed (while some burners override this and offer 20x or 24x which sounds ridiculous).

Old advises like "Don't burn faster than 4x, better use 1x" aren't viable anymore. Depending on the combination writer+blank you might get very few options for selecting a speed.
My Pioneer BDR-209M is pretty flexible and offers a variety of speeds for most media. See the following screenshots. Inserting for example the CD-R (picture 1) in an LG DVD-RW drive doesn't offer 4x and 10x and the DVD+R (picture 5) only gives 8x and 16x on the LG.
1_CD-R.png2_Mini_CD-R.png3_M-Disc_DVD.png4_Mini_DVD-R-DL.png5_DVD+R.png6_DVD+R-DL.png


======
It should be mentioned that many ODE completely replace the drive which takes away the possibility to play original games. Other forms of loading are often superior… still sometimes I want the completely original feeling. The hate towards discs is almost as bad as the hate towards 3DS mode flashcarts.

I prefer to have both options – which is the case with fat PS2+HDD or slim PS2+smb share as well as Wii USB loading.

PS1 ODE are limited in terms of compatibility with some models only – in addition to the solder work.
 

Shade-tepes

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Thank guys for the replies.
Honestly for most consoles, it's just easier and better to get a GDEMU to replace the laser assembly. I want one for my PS1 eventually, but lack the micro-soldering skills. I'll have to have mine sent out as a service.
Personally I like to keep my physically the same as I don't really want to mess with the hardware unless it needs repair. Software wise I don't care.
I will still look into theses as options, but I will make a attempt at buying backups for the time being.



Thx again everyone for the replies!
 
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