Nothing Lasts Forever

Do DVDs and CDs you record at home have a shelf life? Unlike CDs and DVDs that you purchase commercially, home-burned CDs and DVDs do have a lifespan—usually from five to ten years depending the quality of the disks you burn. Commercially burned DVDs and CDs use an entirely different process, one that can’t be replicated at home (at least not yet). What does this mean for the home theater buff? One thing it means is that if you are painstakingly transferring LPs or videocassettes to CD and DVD using your PC, you might want to rethink that strategy.

Investing in good commercial products for anything you want to last forever (keeping in mind that nothing lasts forever), might be better than burning them yourself. On the other hand, making copies you know you will tire of or outgrow in five years or less, or making quick copies for friends is probably still just fine.