[Slowhand] How to ruin a perfect recording - No EC content

Leo Coomans meesaboogie at yahoo.co.uk
Thu Aug 26 07:59:05 EDT 2004

>From what I've read on the digest in the past days, I
expect some among us must think "there he goes again".
But I just can't resist.
This week I received 2 shows I've been waiting for for
a long time, not much circulating one of them :
Stevie Ray Vaughan at The Massey Hall in Toronto on
Aug. 14 1984,
Warren Zevon at The Newbar in Raleigh on Feb. 7 1996.

Yes I'm listening to non-EC too - most of the time I

Both recordings were screwed up.
The SRV-recording was taken directly from a master and
was burnt TAO and it wasn't even the Toronto-show, it
was partly the 1984-Montreal show.
The WZ-recording was also TAO and was also badly cut
and sector-bounderies were not set right, so I ended
up with gaps varying between 2,02 and 2,27 sec.

Not worth trying to restore one of them, one of the
discs had lots of sync errors and isn't usable at all.

Both traders didn't even listen to the disc they were
mailing me and that's what's happening on this list
too if we don't remind you every now and then.

I know a lot of us do care about quality, some just
didn't know how to achieve the best possible.

I've read some things about CD-R quality that just
make me think "how is this possible?". Did they never
hear about the way production lines for CD-R work?
In case you want to read more about this, here's a
link to a great site with accurate (general) info :

And then there's the question about quality. Some say 
use this brand, some say use that brand.
There is an indication that matters for all brands and
that's the so called BLER (BLoc Error Rate).
What follows is some technical info on this matter
that I passed along about 1,5 year ago on another

... something has to be said about the ATIP codes
These codes grade the disks by their BLock Error Rate,
and that's the way the integrity of a disk is measured
in time.
Grade A (with BLER over the whole disk < 6) are high
quality disks, they have no E22 and no E32 errors
Grade B (with BLER over the whole disk < 50) are good
disks, they also have no E22 and no E32 errors.
Grade C (with BLER over the whole disk < 100) are
still usable disks, they have no E22 errors and <1000
dropouts, but you better avoid them.
Grade D (with BLER in all 10 seconds periods is < 220)
aren't good disks at all, they have E22 and E32
Grade F (with BLER in all 10 seconds periods is > 220)
are bad disks.

Average BLER was defined in the Yellow and Red Book.
Average of 220 seems to be a marketable disk.
This is the real thing when it comes to qualify a
disk, but most manufacturors try to have an average
below 50.

E22 error says there were 2 recoverable data bits
E32 means 3 such bits were lost.

Usually these defects indicate poor geometry of the
used disk.

So, the only way to have some info about the quality
of a given CD-R is by reading the ATIP-code.
A good ATIP-code reader can be found here :
http://w510.tm.odessa.ua/soft/cdr_atip/ (free for 30
days) and I believe Feurio reads it too.

But then you still have to believe the manufacturor of
the disks you use and not all disks behave the same
way in all burners and players.
The experience of many is that disks made by Taiyo
Yuden can be used in all burners and in all players
without problems, the same goes for Mitsui and Kodak.

In case you need the technical explanation, you can
read it here :

and if you want to know if you use real quality discs,
read this :


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