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Frequently Asked Questions

Lifetime of KODAK CD-R Ultima Media

These frequently asked questions (FAQ's) were updated on 28 March, 2002

  1. Kodak used to claim their CD-R Gold Ultima product was the best for data archival lifetime, how can Kodak now make the same claims about their CD-R Ultima product?
    The best CD-R media for long-term storage is KODAK CD-R Gold Ultima. It was with this media that Kodak scientists performed the most thorough lifetime estimation study of CD-R media ever documented. A summary of this study is available online at http://www.cd-info.com/CDIC/Technology/CD-R/Media/Kodak.html.

    This type of study is long, costly, and labor intensive, and it has not repeated on KODAK CD-R Ultima media. Kodak has done extended incubation tests, typically at 80°C / 85%RH, on KODAK CD-R Ultima and many other brands of CD-R media. These accelerated ageing studies on KODAK CD-R Ultima media, considering the effect of temperature and humidity, indicate that its data lifetime is well in excess of the warranted lifetime of 100 years if the disc is maintained in a normal office or home environment (temperature less than or equal to 30°C, relative humidity less than or equal to 50%). No other brand beats KODAK CD-R Ultima media for stability.

    KODAK CD-R Ultima media contains real gold in the reflective layer to provide this superior stability, and its write/read performance is essentially equivalent to Gold Ultima.

  2. I am looking for more detailed information. Does Kodak have any "White Papers" on the lifetime of its CD-R Ultima Media?
    Kodak does have two "White Paper" links with detailed information about its CD-R Media. This information can be found at the following URL links:

  3. Kodak claims that the data lifetime on its CD-R Ultima media is 100+ years. How can this be when I have I read that unwritten CD-R media has a shelf life of 5-10 years?
    Because that's as long as unwritten CD-R media has been tested. There is no reason to believe that unwritten media won't last as long as written media. Archival lifetime testing is typically performed on written media.

Kodak, Infoguard, and Photo CD are trademarks of Eastman Kodak Company.

Frequently Asked Questions provide information of limited or specific application. Responsibility for judging the applicability of the information for a specific use rests with the end user.


FAQ1632