Used Verabtim+R for my Wii - bad idea?

Discussion in 'Wii - Hardware, Devices and Utilities' started by BlackVivi, May 15, 2009.

May 15, 2009
  1. BlackVivi

    Newcomer BlackVivi Member

    Jul 9, 2006
    Hi there,

    recently i've burned a lot of wii games, especially with Verbatim +R, the ones with a special layer for printing (example). My Wii reads them all flawlessy, there are some slowdowns in the intros, but they seem to be normal...

    Recently I've heard these burning media are bad for my wii laser. Is this right? Should I burn every game new? Or is the risk too low? Thanks a lot in Advance...!

  2. lll

    Member lll GBAtemp Regular

    Oct 28, 2008
    United Kingdom
    Verbatim are very good quality discs. Unless you experience some sort of problem, they are perfectly OK.

    The stuff about "OMG BRAND X WILL KILL UR LAZER!!!1" is bullshit. The Wii's laser will wear out with use. The worst bad discs can do is cause it to have to retry more often, wearing it out slightly quicker. But you're using good quality discs so there's no problem there. If you see a disc (any disc) giving lots of DREs, re-burn it on something else. If you're paranoid, run quality scans in Nero CD/DVD Speed/Nero DiscSpeed or DVDInfoPro and look for a quality score in the 90s.

    In general the Wii's drive is more likely to be compatible with DVD-Rs than DVD+Rs, and you may need to set the booktype on DVD+Rs depending on your modding method (if you haven't noticed it, then either your burning software is doing it automatically or your modding method doesn't need it). But that's more about whether it works at all.

    Summary: don't worry about it. If you're buying discs for burning Wii games in future, buy some Verbatim DVD-Rs.
  3. ewanfoleor

    Newcomer ewanfoleor Newbie

    Apr 30, 2009
    I can't believe people are still saying this is BS!

    I have been in electronics for a lot of years and I repair and modify a lot of consoles.
    and this is a recurring problem.

    The reason why...

    Not all DVD producers use the same strict guidelines.
    Causing a difference in the thickness of the disc and thus the distance to the laser.

    This is important because the laser needs to have a certain amount of power.

    In "normal" disc drives for say, a PC or a Laptop, the laser is specially adapted to handle a wide
    range of margins. This causes higher margin of error but also makes the system less accurate.
    (just think why it's important to burn at a low speed, if you want to reduce the risk of errors)

    Consoles are fixed, to read at the same distance all the time.
    Not to annoy those who want to modify their console, but in order to guarantee the best and most stabile system.

    Most cheap DVD’s are produced in Asia where there are less strict guidelines.

    Verbatim doesn't just buy a load of generic DVD’s and pasts on their own logo.
    They produce their own DVD’s in Germany, under strict European guidelines.
    Thus supplying a steady quality that is similar to the original Wii disks.

    This is why Verbatim - DVD’s cause less wear and tear.
    And there are diagnostic testing methods to check this.

    Somewhat more than a year ago, we did a test with two brand new Wii's in the shop and the results were staggering. The one on which we used only generic - DVD’s, started showing reading error’s after just 5 months, and was wasted after 9,5 months. Giving increasingly more read errors.

    The one running solely on Verbatim – DVD’s is still running and gave only three read errors.

    (we defined a read error as a disk not being read that previously had been running without problems. And yes, both Wii’s got equal playing time)

    And it's to be expected. We saw more people coming in for lens repair if they used generic DVD’s.

    Not that I mind, I make a pretty penny on this hahaha.

    But it's just a waste of money. The price difference is minimal, Verbatim isn't that expensive.
    Replacing a lens however is! But if you want to save pennies on DVD’s and spend about 120 euro's on lens repair... be my guest.
  4. lll

    Member lll GBAtemp Regular

    Oct 28, 2008
    United Kingdom

    You do realise that the best quality Verbatim-branded discs are produced in Japan (rebadged Taiyo Yuden single layers), followed by Singapore (dual layers manufactured under contract for Mitsubishi Kagaku with MKM's dye), followed by Taiwan (single layers manufactured by CMC Magnetics under contract for Mitsubishi Kagaku with MKM's dye), don't you? I've never heard of made in Germany Verbatims before and a quick google didn't turn up any results. Also given that Mitsubishi Kagaku (Verbatim's parent) outsource their manufacturing to several other companies the "steady supply" stuff is silly.

    Sure, I'll concede that made in Hong Kong or made in China media is usually dreadful, but given that the best media in the world is made by Taiyo Yuden in Japan, it's downright ridiculous to suggest that all DVDs manufactured in Asia are crap.

    Wear and tear on a slot-loading optical drive comes from these things:
    1. Use of the laser. The laser unit will eventually pop its clogs due to laser diode failure or lens failure and need replacing. The more usage the drive gets the faster that will happen. Turning up the strength of the laser ("pot modding") will wear it out faster because the laser is shining brighter.
    2. Movement of the laser unit. The motor controlling the movement of the laser unit will eventually wear out. It's a moving part, and moving parts wear out with use.
    3. Use of the motors for loading and spinning the disc. The motors spinning the disc and pulling the disc into the drive will eventually wear out too.
    4. Interaction of moving parts with the other parts of the disc drive and from the environment, causing physical failure of some sort. A DVD drive produces significant vibration, and there's a disc spinning in there at at least a thousand RPM. People also bump or drop their consoles. The drive goes through hot-cold cycles in colder climates. These are what happens when little plastic bits break or fall into the wrong places and cause failures.

    I'd like to, for a moment, take you for a wander down memory lane. Do you remember the GameCube's drive? It was very picky about media, and in fact Verbatim was not the best choice for it. Instead, it required media with a higher reflectivity - RITEKG04 was generally thought to be the best option. RITEKG04 was abysmal media, it would develop holes in the bloody recording layer after as little as a few months! But that was what the drive was most happy reading (until it degraded, at least). The best disc in general is not always the best choice for a particular situation, and the worst disc is not always the worst choice either.

    The main issues that generally separate good quality discs from bad quality discs are burner compatibility and degradation over time. Some discs are fine in terms of not degrading, but have lower burner compatibility (e.g. CMC MAG media codes). ProdiscF02 have exceptional longevity but poorer burner compatibility, and so end up in the bargain bin. As long as you get a good burn with your burner, it doesn't matter if other burners have trouble with it. Degradation is important, but most DVDs made in the past couple of years are at least OK for that. So the issue is reading drive compatibility. Incompatible discs are going to cause DREs, but not drive failure.

    The diagnostic methods for testing Wii discs that anybody smaller than Nintendo would have access to are disc quality scans (Nero DiscSpeed, DVDInfoPro) to indicate the quality of the burn. It's not unheard of to get >=95 quality scores on burns on "poorer" media like CMC with a good burner. If you had the resources you could test a large number of Wii drives with recorded media (and, given the DVD Video support built into the drive, I'd say the manufacturer did) and see whether it had an effect on MTBF. With all due respect, someone who repairs/mods consoles does not have enough data to make a proper assessment, and you're forgetting that even if you did that correlation is not causation - people who use crappy discs are less likely to take good care of their console, for example, and people who use the cheapest discs they can are more likely to be burning (and using) a lot of them.

    I'd also like to take issue with your description of the issues surrounding disc thickness. If the disc is too thick, the laser will not be properly focused and chances are it just plain won't work. If the disc is unevenly thick, it'll put more stress on the motor and introduce vibration. It'll also cause the laser focus to vary, causing intermittent read issues. But all that can do is cause higher wear and tear, read retrys, slower loading times and DREs. The laser beam exits the laser diode, is focused by the lens and reflects off the disc surface. Pits cause it to reflect in a different direction, which is read by a sensor. I don't know how much, if any, control the firmware of the drive has over the strength of the laser, but ultimately it is constrained by the setting of the potentiometer on the laser unit. Wii users generally don't need to touch the pot so it stays at its Nintendo factory setting. Then there's the fact that Verbatim discs can vary in height by whether they're silvertops, inkjet printables or LightScribes, and by the actual manufacturer anyway...
  5. ewanfoleor

    Newcomer ewanfoleor Newbie

    Apr 30, 2009
    Like I said, MOST cheap DVD’s are produced in Asia. Which doesn’t mean, that ALL DVD’s from Asia are crap.

    But I’m absolutely sorry, and you’re absolutely right. Verbatim doesn’t produce DVD’s in Germany. I was regurgitating, what I understood from a Verbatim employee. After a quick call, I now understand that I probably misinterpreted his words. He had been talking about the difference in quality between Verbatim products and the origin of production. The Verbatim products in Europe were generally of a superior level to those in the US. For example, the Pastel Series was superb, and were genuine TY disks (until production was outsourced to Ritek. The Pearl series was absolutely dreadful (mainly because production was for the most part, in the hands of Ritek). The reason why I thought Verbatim was producing disks in Germany, was because of some German test reports I read on the MCC 03RG20.

    Maybe I should have been more specific.
    When I talk about Verbatim in Wii discussions, I mean the regular minus DVD.
    To the best of my knowledge, these are no longer produced by TY, but by MCC. Usually comparable quality with TY. Although rumor has it, they (Verbatim) started producing in Arabia and India as well, with lower quality. Although still outranking most disks around.

    Futhermore I never said that Verbatim was the best choice for just any console. I said that Verbatim produces a disc that is SIMILAR to the original Wii disc. And I’m only talking about the single layer –DVD, that is most commonly recommended. Not the wide range of disks Verbatim offers.

    Normally I don’t spend much time explaining about the differences in disks. There is no real need for it, because here (in the Netherlands) most shops only sell regular Verbatim and DL.

    About the wear and tear.

    It’s experience. You can tell me it’s highly unlikely or even impossible that the Titanic will ever sink. Because it is build to withstand all of the known dangers.
    But if you watch it sink at first hand… you’ll start to doubt, ever so slightly.

    I know, the test we did, doesn’t constitute as exact science. The difference in wear and tear could have been the result of a number of reasons. Maybe one was just shoddily made. Maybe the one that faltered had a weak lens to begin with. Who knows…

    But if you have two brand new Wii’s with an equal amount of playtime and one show’s more wear and tear than the other. And the only difference is the disks you use, you tend to get suspicious. Not disregarding the fact that it is supported by almost two years of experience, story’s from customers and fellow customizers. Along with the reports on the web.

    And lastly.
    One could argue that a person who is more aware of their spending and tries to opt for the cost effective way, rather than just following the popular brand, would be more aware of how they are using their equipment as well.
    Suggesting that people who buy cheap products, are people who are careless with their wii, is also a blatant assumption.

    I have no special interest in Verbatim. I have no financial interest in the company, nor do I sell them to my customers. If I wanted to make money of it, I wouldn’t say anything at all. And have them return for pricy lens replacement. But that’s not the kind of person I am.

    If I’m wrong about the Verbatim disks, people would pay only slightly more for their DVD’s and at least get a good quality DVD that will last a bit longer. If I’m right, their lens will last longer, and will spare them a costly repair.

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