Archival Gold CD-Rs worth the cost?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by sigamy, Jan 6, 2006.

  1. sigamy macrumors 65816

    Mar 7, 2003
    NJ USA
    I was in a local photo shop yesterday and the owner was really hammering me about backing up my photos. I do quarterly backus to CD or DVD and I periodically copy my entire iPhoto library to an external drive.

    He recommended Delkin Devices Archival Gold eFilm CD-Rs. Said they are 24k gold coated and will last 300yrs. He also recommened that I print my pics from a photo lab. All of this is good advice but I wasn't sure if he was just trying to sell me stuff. The CD-Rs are over $1 each, so they aren't cheap.

    Does anyone have any opinions (or facts) on if we should be spending a bit more on high quality CD-Rs? Or are these things just the same as standard CD-Rs I buy at Best Buy or CompUSA? I'm willing to spend the extra if it will help preserve my photos longer.

    Here is a link with info on the discs:
  2. hcuar macrumors 65816


    Jul 23, 2004
    Yes... your CD's that you plan on keeping more than 3 years (sometimes 1)... should be stored on Archive Gold CDs. The other types of CDs exibit data loss after 1 year due to oxidation and breakdown of the chemicals used in their creation. I personally use Mitsui Archive Gold CD-Rs... I buy them from them online.

    As to your prints... It depends on the printer. Standard printers with normal paper will fade and yellow.

    If you purchase a dye sublimination printer (Kodak, Canon Selphy, Sony), the prints will last 100 years. (Long enough for me... ;))
  3. adk macrumors 68000


    Nov 11, 2005
    Stuck in the middle with you
    Well, you really don't need to get your prints from a photo shop, he was trying to sell you service. But it is usually cheaper to have them professionally printed. There are some online companies that charge $.12-$.15 per print. Of course shipping is a few dollars, but not a big deal on large orders. The fact is it's cheaper to get small prints professionally printed, and they're better and longer lasting.
  4. sigamy thread starter macrumors 65816

    Mar 7, 2003
    NJ USA
    Well I never print at home. Tried that for 4 years and you get no where near the quality and the cost is outrageous. HP printer ink is like $8,000/gallon. (And we are busy complaining about $3 gas).

    We typically order prints via iPhoto. Good quality and the price is better now. If we are in a rush for some project we'll go to a local photo lab.

    Any more thoughts on the archival gold CD-Rs?
  5. wPod macrumors 68000


    Aug 19, 2003
    Denver, CO
    ive deffinitly had trouble retrieving data off of old CDs that are more than a couple years old. so CDs aren't perfect. but then again the old CDs i have are some of the first CD-R's availble so the quality/technology then might not have been the best. i dont know about Gold CDs, i havent used them, nor been around for 300 years to test them out! the idea sounds good, especially if you have critical data that needs to last a long time. i dont see whats wrong with getting an external HD then 5 years from now getting a new one and coppying the data etc. i guess that wouldn't last 300 years though, cause the HD might fail by then, or the platters may not be able to spin after the first hundred years.
  6. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    May 7, 2004
    Sod off
    I bought some really cheap CD-Rs about four years ago, and they are delaminating. But they were realy cheap - $18 for 100 blanks.

    I have some more expensive (but not archive-grade) CD-Rs I bought around the same time and they work fine still. I guess IO should probably be more concerned than I am.

    I don't back up data as often as I should, but at the moment I have all my music, photos and movies backed up both on a hard drive and DVD. I trust hard drives more...although some of the 10+ year old SCSI drive in my older Macs have failed. I wonder how long current drives will last on average?
  7. combatcolin macrumors 68020


    Oct 24, 2004
    Northants, UK
    Big external hard drive.

    Back ups now and then

    2nd copy of back ups stores at parents.
  8. combatcolin macrumors 68020


    Oct 24, 2004
    Northants, UK
    If you can get away from Virtual RAM, guessing untill we can all get our Kosh style encounter suits from B5.

    IE, a bloody long while :p
  9. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    I use at the suggestion of people on Fred Miranda, but I really only print large prints for framing (usually around 16"x20" to 20"x30" range), so it's worth it to me. I guess it depends on what you want from your prints....
  10. swingerofbirch macrumors 68040

    Oct 24, 2003
    The Amalgamated States of Central North America
    Our CDs get the luxury of the gold, and my dentist is still filling my mouth with mercury! What a world!
  11. skimaxpower Guest

    Jan 13, 2006
    For the record

    For the record...

    You can get your digital photos printed (very good quality) for less than 10 cents in any decent camera shop in Southeast Asia. Good to remember next time you have a business trip / vacation in Thialand, Singapore, etc.
  12. mcmadhatter macrumors 6502


    Sep 6, 2005
    Bath, UK
    for any uk readers offer a great service, they might not be the cheapest (they seem pretty cheap to me though, especially in bulk), but they have a quick turnaround, and i happen to know that use decent fuji proffesional printers, papers and inks. they'll even supply you with the printers icc colour profiles so you can get the mathcing spot on.:D
  13. iEdd macrumors 68000


    Aug 8, 2005
    So... All my burnt cds are effectively useless? From now on it's all on archivals for me.
  14. howesey macrumors 6502a

    Dec 3, 2005
    As said, yes they are worth the extra money. I have recorded things on normal CD-R, after a few years some files wont open, and then the disc doesn't read. The BBC made a big mistake by getting old TV programs that were on tape and putting them onto DVD-R. Tapes have a half life of about 50 years so it was needed to be done, they then realised that DVD-R only had a life of around 10 years. They ended up spending £millions copying the DVD's to hard drives where they would last hundreds of years.

    Anyone ever tried having prints done by Apple? What quality were they? How good was the service?
  15. iMeowbot macrumors G3


    Aug 30, 2003
    The best bet is not to trust any of them. The estimated lifetime for all recordable media (magnetic, optical, you name it) has invariably turned out to be overly optimistic, artificial aging turns out to be guesswork in the end.

    For stuff you really, really care about, make it an annual (or so) ritual to make fresh duplicates. Don't worry too much about the size of the project, there'll be bigger and faster media out by the time it starts to be a bother.
  16. sk1985 macrumors regular

    Jan 13, 2006
    Common CD-Rs and RWs last about 5 years max in most cases. Only a few of my older ones work. I honestly don't know if these gold plated ones really work.
  17. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    I have (Sony) ones that are over 8 years old that still work fine but they've been looked after, stored in jewel cases and put in dark dry places (and no, not under my armpits :D ).

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