Submit Hint Search The Forums LinksStatsPollsHeadlinesRSS
14,000 hints and counting!

iTunes, burn speed, and wasted CDs Apps
Over the last few days, I've been trying to burn my first CD's with iTunes for X on my G4/733 with the Superdrive. On my first attempt, I accidentally left the screensaver and drive sleep enabled, and continued to browse web sites, download files, and play with mySQL while the disc burned. I wound up with a coaster, and wrote it off to my failure to set things up correctly.

On the second attempt, I remembered to turn everything off, and left iTunes in the foreground while it worked. When it was done, I stuck the disc in the PC (as it's the most finicky machine about reading homebrew CD's), and it didn't read. On the Mac, it read, but wouldn't play at all. Coaster #2, but this time, I didn't know why.

Before the third attempt, on a hunch I went into iTunes' prefs, and set the burn speed to 1x instead of 8x. I had already set the buffer to "large", so I left that alone. Again, I left iTunes in the foreground while it worked. The play list was about an hour long, and I left for about 45 minutes. I was surprised to find the disc done when I returned, so I can't really say it burned at 1x -- I need to do some further testing to see how fast it actually burns. When I tried this disc in the PC, it worked great ... it also works in all the players I've tried it in, so it appears I had a successful burn.

Pending further investigation, I plan on burning all my CD's in iTunes at 1x; it may be worthwhile (at least for those with G4/733 Superdrive machines) for others to do the same. Anyone else had similar or different experiences on similar or different hardware?
    •    
  • Currently 1.67 / 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  (6 votes cast)
 
[17,183 views]  

iTunes, burn speed, and wasted CDs | 18 comments | Create New Account
Click here to return to the 'iTunes, burn speed, and wasted CDs' hint
The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Works on a G4 533
Authored by: eagle_eyes on May 20, '01 12:56:32AM

I have a G4 533 with a burner in it. I have burned several cds with no problems and they all seem to work. I never changed it from the defaults and have done other stuff while burning, with no ill affects.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Works on a G4 533
Authored by: robg on May 20, '01 01:13:48AM

Hmm ... I'm wondering if it's the Superdrive. The first two were definitely DOA!



[ Reply to This | # ]
Works on a G4 533
Authored by: eagle_eyes on May 20, '01 07:46:19PM

I have (well I am the admin for it anyway) a 733 w/ super drive as well, but have never used it to burn anything :-S So I have no idea if it works.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Max 2X recomended by apple
Authored by: Egil Hatleskog on May 20, '01 07:21:22AM

I´m 99% sure I read that somewhere...



[ Reply to This | # ]
Max 2X recomended by apple
Authored by: robg on May 20, '01 08:05:52PM

The Read Me talks about 2x with a USB-based drive, but makes no comments about speed (of any sort) when using the internal drive.

I've learned my lesson, though ... I'm sticking with 1x unless someone gives me a really good reason to try a higher rate ;-).

-rob.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Half of burn speed
Authored by: kjc on May 20, '01 06:06:25PM

Hey,

It's my vague understanding that, as a general rule, you should always burn CDs at half the maximum burn speed. Ergo, if it's 8x, burn at 4x.

See ya



[ Reply to This | # ]
Half of burn speed
Authored by: Anonymous on May 21, '01 10:46:44AM

Thats an awfully paranoid suggestion. Do you also only use half your RAM and half your hard drive?

As long as yuo have a decent drive, you should be able to burn at full speed. Maybe Mac OS X doesn't support this well yet....but then again, what does Mac OS X support at this point?



[ Reply to This | # ]
4x all day...
Authored by: GORDYmac on May 21, '01 11:27:30AM

I have never had a problem burning at my drive's [Que!Fire] max speed of 4x.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Best Practice
Authored by: wejdoane on May 21, '01 08:23:54PM

Some of this may be due to the way in which CD-Rs are burned, and what other readers make of them. CD-Rs "burn" the surface of the disk (really, of the platter) to create areas of differing contrast where light/dark = 0/1. The faster you burn, the less contrast in the resulting disk. Some readers (especially older readers) have difficulty reading discs burned at high speeds (and therefore lower contrast). The slower you burn, the higher the contrast, the easier it is for those readers to read it. In my experience, 1x or 2x is usually safe.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Que!Fire
Authored by: Anonymous on May 21, '01 08:31:25PM

Max 10X, I've found that anything above 4X becomes a coaster. I've set the buffer to large also. Luckily I've only made one coaster....so far, hehe.



[ Reply to This | # ]
urban legend...
Authored by: skab on May 22, '01 12:55:13AM

People, don't always believe what you heard from your friend's neighbor's cousin. *Real* tests (with CD testing equipment) have shown that hi-speed burns were even *better* than 2x or 1x ones, since the laser had to be switched on/off faster, thus more precise, thus making a better CD.

YMMV, as always. But it's not a written law that slower is better. If you get a coaster it's often the software (like iTunes stumbling over sleep mode...), a crappy burner or bad CDRs. I bought some CDRs that were so bad, they didn't last a week without a read error. Others (SONY, Fuji among others) just work, all the time, at all speeds. Just try what works best with your burner and CD-ROM drive(s). And don't believe people who say you should use your burner at half it's max speed. If your 10x burner only works reliably at 4x speed, then it's not some weird physical law, it's just a broken burner. You should save some money and buy an old 4x burner instead...

So don't worry, most better burner/CD manufacturers know what they are doing, so use your stuff like it's supposed to be and don't be afraid of speed ;-)) Burn on!



[ Reply to This | # ]
urban legend...
Authored by: kjc on May 22, '01 04:57:23PM

Hi, skab,

You're no doubt correct. I mentioned that my suggestion was based on a "vague understanding." Indeed, as you pointed out, I heard of this "urban legend" from my neighbor! So, burn away, everyone, and burn as fast as your device will allow.



[ Reply to This | # ]
urban legend...
Authored by: danwarne on May 23, '01 07:20:00AM

I'm with Skab on this one. There's no 'rule of thumb' about what speed works best. It depends on how good your CD writer is, whether it has BURN-Proof, and your particular cd players. For example Sony CD players rarely play CD-R discs. This is a marketing decision by sony corporate to protect their music publlishing division and you can read more about it on Roxio and Sony's website.

Also the brand of media you use is critical. I have found imation, TDK and Kodak have given me flawless results. Go to CDMediaworld.com for 'the real story' on CD Media including precision tests with scientific testing equipment. They also have interesting info on the (very limited number of) CD-R Media manufacturers and the quality levels coming out of their factories across various brands.

Finally, I have a QPS Que!Fire Firewire 12x CDRW with a Plextor mechanism and I can successfully burn from Toast decoding MP3s realtime at 4x (on my G4-400 AGP), and the same with direct CD to CD copy. However this speed limitation is due to the speed of the source media not the drive or media itself. Go above that and you have to switch on BURN-Proof to cope with the buffer underruns. On the other hand, using good media, I can burn an audio CD from a CD Image on the hard drive no problems at 12x and it plays in my car CD player and 10 year old stereo's CD player.

IMHO iTunes is pretty cruddy when it comes to writing CDs, especially its ability to cope with background processes. Also it has to decode the MP3s to disk first which adds a lot of time whereas Toast writes MP3s directly as audio to the CD, 'decoding-on-the-fly'. Of course if you are bent on using OSX to burn your CDs then iTunes is your only option at the present moment. Roll on Toast 5 for OSX.

Kind regards
Dan



[ Reply to This | # ]
G4 400 with Que!Fre 16X10X40X
Authored by: dixonbm on May 22, '01 01:13:46AM

My G4 400 running OS 10.0.3 with itunes 1.1.1 works wonderfully with the Que!Fre 16X10X40X. I've been burning at 16X and the cd plays flawlessly in my computer, in my car, and cd players.



[ Reply to This | # ]
G4 400 with Que!Fre 16X10X40X
Authored by: c on May 23, '01 08:42:32AM

Thanks for the info, dixonbm. It sounds like OS X
might help out a lot, here. To robg and the others
who posted, are any of you using OS X yet?



[ Reply to This | # ]
iTunes, burn speed, and wasted CD's
Authored by: recardo on May 30, '01 09:17:22AM

I just received my g4 733 with a superdrive and n3. In addition, mine seems to work great with itunes settings 8x set to large buffer with no problems. Burned over 15 CD's, The problem is to get CD's that are certified for 1x threw 16x verbatim works great with my superdrive. I was running apps in the background and I have over 768 MB. It could be a memory issue or type of CD's you are using



[ Reply to This | # ]
iTunes, burn speed, and wasted CD's
Authored by: robg on May 30, '01 12:36:41PM

Good advice; I'm due for some new CD-Rs, so I'll make sure their high-speed capable.



[ Reply to This | # ]
iTunes, burn speed, and wasted CD's
Authored by: robg on Jun 12, '01 01:45:25PM

As a follow-up, I bought a 100-count dual-pack of TDK 16x certified CD-Rs at Costco last weekend. The Superdrive in the G4/733 has a max burn speed of 8x, and I had perfect success at that rate on three discs I made on Sunday. So it appears my old media was the main cause of my problem -- I even left most tasks running, and switched my USB switchbox over to the PC during the burn. No problems at all!

-rob.



[ Reply to This | # ]