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CDR Repair Kits

CD Repair Kits -

versus various goops from kitchen & bathroom

 

 

We ask are CD repair kits worth their money?

CD-readers are remarkably good at dealing with the usual debris of a geek's world: oily pizza-oil fingerprints & sticky residues from those vital remedies to get a gamer's blood-sugar level up; all ground in with a quick rub on a jean-clad bum. 

They're not quite so good at dealing with real scratches; & inevitably the unreadable CD is a prized compilation of choice cuts or a vital piece of expensive software.

Burningissues decided to test some of the moderately expensive repair-kits on the market: these are all, in essence, neatly packaged burnishing-pastes, which polish out the scratches without making the whole surface unreadably matte. 

After advice from some members of our forum, who recommended most everything bar dragon's blood or good Arkansas soil, we included some common household abrasives: like toothpaste &,  Brasso (suggested by Juglug).

The testing-procedure was effectively to put these CD's on a record-player . . . . . . well, not exactly: what we did was to use an adjustable scribe - an arm with a hardened needle sticking out a set distance [0.004"/0.1mm], & ran a scratch from just beyond the TOC all the way to the outside of the disk.

 

Test Procedure

For the test we used 20 TDK 74CDR disks, recording  30 minutes of a 1000Hz  tone on each.

We then used Feurio to rip the scratched CD and Pristine Sounds 2000  - in frequency view mode - to view the before and after affects:

 

Original waveform before the scratch

 

Contenders & Results

 

CD Repair Kits & Home Remedies

Memorex   

Maxell

Disc-Saver

Crystal-Disc

Acetone

Toothpaste

Brasso Metal Polish

Rubbing Compound

 Comet Cleanser

First Application

*

N/C

**

**

Damaged CD

N/C

**

**

*

Second  Application

**

*

***

***

N/A

N/C

***

**

**

Third Application

***

**

***

****

N/A

N/C

****

***

**

Price

$8.99 1.5-oz

$9.99 1.5-oz

$5.99 14.7-ml

$7.99 20-ml

$1.89 per qt.

$.99 4-oz.

$4.69 8-oz.

$3.99   10-oz.

$1.79 17-oz.

Rating

Good

Poor

Good

=Best

Dangerous

Useless

=Best

Good

Poor

Legend: N/C = no change; * = some improvement, ***** = total repair

NB: we intend to test: Wipeout, CD Doctor, & Kerns to see how these kits match up.

 

Before-and-after shots of the top 3 finishers

Brasso: before

Brasso: after3 passes

Crystal-Disc Restorer: before

Crystal-Disc Restorer: after 3 passes

Memorex CD Repair: before

Memorex CD Repair: after 3 passes

 

Comments

Well . . . . by looking at the above table you can see that CD scratch repair kits are not worth the money compared to Brasso.

Burningissues' overall best of show must go to Brasso: it's easy to use and is available in most grocery and hardware stores. It ties with Crystal-Disc Restorer in absolute performance - but just look at the price difference:  $7.99 for 20ml of Crystal Disc vs. $4.69 for 235ml of Brasso Metal Polish.

It's been fun [if laborious] finding out a mad-sounding recommendation of a household product rather than "the real thing" is for once on the inside straight:  we believe our tests follow a solid methodology; but please keep in mind these results are for your information only, & carry no warranty.  If you are not confident in trying to repair your CD, or your efforts fail, you may like to try a specialist company such as cd-repair.co.uk who, for a small fee, will attempt to repair your CD.

PostScript;

Since writing this article we have recently learned that Terry McGee from Terry McGee's Flutes recommends Brasso after using it for quite sometime.

copyright Frank (Hudzon) December 2000 for Burningissues.net - all rights reserved

 

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