How long can a CD/DVD be safely paused?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by zelmo, Mar 31, 2006.

  1. zelmo macrumors 603


    Jul 3, 2004
    Mac since 7.5
    Wasn't sure what forum to throw this in, so Community it is. Mods, feel free to move as needed.

    My mom listens to audiobooks on CD because her eyesight is getting really bad (she's 85), too bad even to navigate an iPod menu. She will pause her CD player to get a coffee, hit the bathroom, or answer the phone, and sometimes forgets she has the disk paused.
    I got her a new CD player that can be stopped and resumes right where it left off, but she persists in pausing so she doesn't lose her place in the books. Old habits and a distrust of new technology and all that, y'know?
    So, how long is it safe to keep a disk paused? I couldn't find anything on line (easily), so I am turning to my fellow MR members for the definitive answer (and a bunch of guesses and sarcasm, too).
  2. iPhil macrumors 68040


    I would Guess no more than an hr @ a time on pause, but i thinking thats low estimate .. :eek: ;)
  3. dops7107 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 19, 2005
    Perth, Oztrailya
    Is there any mechanical difference, in terms of longevity, of playing compared with pausing? The disc is spinning still, as if it were playing; in fact, the lens isn't moving or the laser running whilst on pause, so we might expect there to be less wear and tear than if the machine was playing.

    So how many hours of *playback* life do you think a machine can cope with? I've got a CD deck that's a good 8 years old now, and it plays just fine. I should imagine you'd get 5000 - 10,000 hours of playback? So perhaps even longer on pause. :confused:
  4. nbs2 macrumors 68030


    Mar 31, 2004
    A geographical oddity
    I've noticed that some CD and DVD players will shut themselves off after being on pause for x amount of time (usually 15 min or so). Whe you turn them back on, they resume where they were, so no big loss. If that is the case with hers, you don't have any issues. Otherwise, I can't imagine that there will be real risk.

    I imagine most of the damage would happen while the disk is spinning and the machine moving. If she is using a home stereo, no moving risk.
  5. emw macrumors G4


    Aug 2, 2004
    I agree that pausing shouldn't have any more detrimental impact than playing - it's just wasting batteries, if applicable, and motor life for no reason.

    My guess is that you could safely pause for as long as you'd like without major impact to the life of the CD player.

    For a DVD it might be different, if the player doesn't have a "screen saver" because in that case the laser does stay on in a given position for extended periods. Don't know that it would be a large impact, but you never know.

    Of course, you could also just swap the pause button with the stop button and she'd be none the wiser. Speaking of which, if she can't see that well, just tell her that the stop button is the pause button. Is that mean? :p
  6. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    May 7, 2004
    Sod off
    I agree, pause is less stressful than playback. I have a CD player that's 12 years old and a portable CD player that is (drumroll) 21 years old, and if they can play CDs for that long then pausing mom's CD player for a few hours won't hurt anything.
  7. Dagless macrumors Core


    Jan 18, 2005
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    We have some old Gen-Exxa CD player. it's wonderlust. still works like a treat. Cost a small fortune back in the day but NOT as much as my mates CD player. oh lordy. I forget the make but it's something prestigious. It was one of the first ever CD players, has these HUGE audio out, sorta old-skool Midi connection to plug into the amp. glass front, pops up, touch buttons. truly amazing! To say its godly old like.

    But yea. CD players last, even the first ones, a very very long time.
  8. evoluzione macrumors 68020


    Jul 19, 2002
    down the road, that's where i'll always be
    years ago when i had a Technics CD player (still have it actually) i made a mix cd, back in the day of 1x burners, and i spray painted the CD and painted a "label" on it (those printers that do the CD labels obviously weren't around 10 years ago). i stuck it in the CD player and the paint wasn't 100% dry, and it stuck to the spindle thing that clamps it down inside the machine. i took the casing off and unstuck it, worked fine still after that.

    shortly after, i was playing a CD, paused it, went out, and then went on vacation for two weeks, forgetting to shut off the CD player. came back, hit play, and it carried on belting out the tunes. still works to this day.

    in short, don't worry about it being on pause, it's fine. :)
  9. Kingsly macrumors 68040


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