Monday, September 21, 2020

Determining the manufacturer and recording medium of a blank CD or DVD

Every recordable CD and DVD actually has a little bit of data on the blank disc. On CDs this is called the ATIP (Absolute Time in Pregroove) and contains things like the manufacturer, length, dye type, and rated speed. This information is used by the disc drive to choose the optimal burning strategy. 

Keep in mind this info can be faked (Hong Kong manufacturers putting fake TY01 codes on their discs was a thing when Taiyo Yuden discs were in high demand). And the dye type is not necessarily the actual dye type used, but the hint to the drive about which burning mode to use (I've read that azo discs are burned using the cyanine strategy).

To view the atip of a CD-R/CD-RW on Linux using the cdrecord package:

# cdrecord -atip

Recordable DVDs have a similar area called the Media Identification Code. To read this information on Linux using the dvd+rw-tools package:

# dvd+rw-mediainfo /dev/sr0

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