I can't be the only person with this problem. My new GamuT CD-1 is wonderful, etc. (see my system), but it is sensitive to scratched discs. Email from the designer indicates that he decided on sound quality at the expense of robust correction (which, I guess isn't 'correction' so much as 'guessing').
Unfortunately, I have a good number of old discs that have been around the block a time or two--lent to friends who leave them out and stack them, caseless; carried around NYC in sub-par cd wallets (mea culpa); dropped, forgotten, lied to...
How can I fix them? I have heard of a number of products--potions, polishers, scrapers...
The following is a purely ad-hoc list of possible solutions. Can anyone comment? I'd love to just buy one that works instead of building a library of products that don't.
Novus #1 Plastic Cleaner
Novus #2 Fine Scratch Remover
Novus Perspex polish
Allsop cleaners ?
Brasso polish ?
Discwasher CD scratch repair kit (cleaner and polisher liquids)
Discwasher CD Cleaning system (turntable thingy)
BlueNote Galaktos CD treatment
Nitty Gritty Pure CD Fluid
Auric Illuminator kit - gell and pen (does this fix scratched discs?)
Mapleshade Mikro-Smooth polish
Mapleshade Optrix (enhancer?)
Finyl cd cleaner
Disc Doctor - Miracle CD Cleaner
Walker Vivid Cleaner kit (marketed as an enhancer, not a scratch remover.)
(Thanks, Ole, for the recommendations.)
I'm leaning toward the Mapleshade combo--they seem to have good feedback on their website (not surprisingly), and the products seem fairly priced. Anyone here used it?
Thanks. I will report results back here.
Expensive, and labor intensive, but, the best way to fix scratched CD's is to get a plastic polishing kit from a plastics supply house, or perhaps, even Home Depot (I saw a kit there once). The kit should contain "sandpapers" that range in grit from 1200 to 20,000. You would use the papers in series up to the final polish with the 20,000 grit.
Agree with Rodney's last advise. I have taken many scratched discs and burned a new and seemingly perfect copy with EAC and my CD burner. That EAC program is very good at correcting errors from scratches.
and if you use black CD-R media, burn at low speed, clean the CDs perfectly, use a demagnetizer before burning, do it on an external CD-R drive that sits on a vibration isolation platform, you may actually get a better CD than the original.
I did that yesterday, with a brand new CD never played before, and, well, now I think I have to do that to my entire collection... at least on my system, the black CD dupe was much more "organic" than anything I have ever heard before from the original CDs.
see the link below - the scratch "removal" is taken care of by EAC, although I bet if your scratch is deep, some of the Meguiar's polish may be needed in addition. However, I've fixed several used CDs that didn't play without skip using EAC, never needing the polish.
Perspex is NOT polycarbonate , it has totally different properties , thus what might work well on it wont on poly (I have big laser systems and fabricate using various plastics as a major part of my business.
Buffing and polishing plastics is not that "easy"
Essentially to *remove* scratches one HAS to use a cutting compound , IE something with an abraisive in it , this is fraught with problems , cos deep scratches can ONLY be removed via a buffing application (You can flame polish as well by applying a broad heat front over the item and "remelting" the surface - not for CD's tho)
Buffing and abraisives or hand polishing do a few things , deep polising will HAVE to remove areas around the scratch and thus the CDs surface becomes uneven , this leads to either optical problems , balance problems or induces stress into the plastics. Overpolishing using a buff system generates tremendous heat which stresses the plastic , leads to plastic "burning" and can lead to problems on the pit side of things.
Ideally what you want to do with a scratch is to polish off the "raised" edges of the scratch and polish the scratch "internally" so the "frost" in the scratch is once again clear.
Internal scratch polishing is almost impossible , one can generally NOT get into the valley of the scratch with a buff etc and even if one does , there is a residue of polish in that valley which is equally as difficult to remove , the point is not to disturb the balance of the CD and to remove areas which would diffract or divert the laser.
Polishing the "raised" edge acomplishes this , but we are still left with the internals of the scratch. Now in photography , a negative that has been scratched is mseared with vaseline and wiped off , the vaseline "fills" the scratch and allows it to become far less defined on a print cos the vaseline "softens" the internal lines of the scratch as well as being close in optical transferrence to the celluloid carrier.
If one has a piece of scratched plastic which has the characteristic "frost" of a scratch (the white look) then dropping an oil on actually makes the white "transparent" again.
SO what you want to do is 1) polish the edge of the scrach
2) Clean ALL polish residue off
3) Fill the scratch with something that is close to the optical characteristics of the base material as well as being able to make the "frost" transparent.
Cleaning is a problem as solvents and plastics dont mix , most polishes have a wax base of some sort , so the soapy water wash MIGHT not work to remove residue in the scratch , what will work however is an ultrasonic cleaner.
Better still is to buy a CD burner and use a program like EAC to rip the audio off the scratched CD (with error correction and re-reads it should do this quite well) and reburn it onto fresh media.
Modern high speed burners are vERY good , and there is no audible difference between a high speed burnt CD where the data has been well extracted and the original - use brand name media with the burner.
I did try almost anything I could land my hand on. The only thing that works is polishing with high speed drill and finest sandpaper. But after several times you have no CD.
The heavier grit one works best at about $5 for a tube to last a lifetime.
There is also a Novus #3 Heavy Scratch Remover, if you have discs with good-size scratches on them...
I have a fairly large number of scratched disks because of a car's factory CD player in the early days of CD-equipped automobiles. The CD player didn't do a good job of dealing with bumps, so the lens assy would whack the CD while it was playing. I didn't discover the problem until dozens and dozens of my CDS had been scratched.
I'm skeptical of the scratch removers.
And instead of lending discs to friends I would suggest you burn them a copy and give them the copy
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