Rimage White Paper Optical Media:

The Best Solution for Storing and Distributing Digital Content


For most businesses, the ability to collect, store and distribute content is not a benefit, but a requirement. In today’s information-driven society, it is important for every professional to have the capability to gather information (whether it is records, data, multimedia, etc.) in one central, secure form—one that will not only stand the test of time, but that can be quickly and easily accessed when you need it, wherever you are.

Before the development of optical media, magnetic tape, LP records and other types of vinyl records were the primary resources for the storage and distribution of content and media. In their time, these were logical and useful options. However, optical media, such as CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray discs, gave the world an unparalleled solution for the storage and distribution of music, video and data—a solution that keeps growing and expanding. From physicians and university professors to retail clerks and independent business owners, people from all walks of life have discovered the benefits of using optical media to store and distribute their professional information in a dynamic and secure manner.

Even as more industries realize the value of optical media, this solution continues to offer bigger, better and more robust benefits. This white paper highlights the reasons why optical media is the number one choice for the storage and distribution of digital content.

Introduction Optical media is the leading storage and distribution solution. It combines all the benefits professionals look for in one convenient package. Optical media is:

• Inexpensive

• Archival

• Durable

• Searchable

• Reliable

• Secure

• Versatile

• Printable


More space for your buck.

CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray discs are extremely cost effective. A full-color permanently printed disc costs $.70 for a CD, $.80 for a DVD and $5.00 for a Blu-ray disc. Affordability is especially helpful if you are sending stored information to multiple parties. When it comes to storage space, size does matter. Optical disc capacities vary from 700 MB to 25 GB. With that kind of range, you have the added advantage of selecting the exact storage size that fits your needs. Now you can store your data efficiently and dole it out cost effectively—and still have room left over to grow. In terms of value, nothing beats an optical disc.

Live long and prosper.

Optical media offers an unparallelled archiving solution, allowing you to minimize bulky libraries and files of information into a less complicated, handheld solution. Not only is optical media both small and portable, but it outlasts any conventional form of record keeping. ISO tests confirm that a properly maintained CD will last more than 100 years. DVDs and Blu-ray discs can survive for more than 50 years. When you use optical media, you not only have a small, efficient method of gathering and transporting your data, but you can be assured that your media will last through the generations.

A match for Mother Nature.

Of all portable media storage solutions, optical discs are the toughest in the industry. Dust and fingerprints generally do not disturb the functionality and readability of a disc and, in general, optical media can withstand a

reasonable amount of water, heat, humidity and even harsh chemicals. One user of optical media states:

“Last summer I had some music CDs and a bottle of weed killer in my car. One afternoon, my trunk got pretty hot and the weed killer leaked all over my stack of CDs. When I got home, I washed them off with some warm soapy water, carefully rinsed them and stacked them in the dish rack to dry. The next day, they were ready to use. Had this happened to an iPod or USB drive, I would have lost my entire music library.”

Of course, proper storage, general care and common sense are fundamental to the lifespan of discs, and surface scratches can pose the threat of permanent damage. However, when appropriately stored and cared for, optical discs are the sturdiest and most resilient digital media storage solution available today.

Seek and you will find.

Do you remember trying to fast forward to your favorite song on a cassette tape? Now, think about how fast and easy it is to search for music on a CD with a touch of a button. Long gone are the days of having to listen to an entire tape from beginning to end or hunting and pecking to find the one thing that you are looking for. Optical access media provides direct access, rather than linear access to data so you do not have to spend valuable time trying to find the track, document or video that you require. Today’s world is fast-paced, and time is critical to the success of your business. When you store your data, music and video on a disc, you can always find what you need, when you want it.

Have optical media, will travel.

Worldwide, a 120mm optical disc is the most universal method of storage and transportation of information. Because disc technology is the industry standard, you can take a CD, DVD or Blu-ray disc anywhere in the world and find a place to read it. In addition, optical media is the only technology that scales from laptops to enterprise solutions—discs can easily travel from the smallest laptop to the largest server room. When you walk in to a meeting, conference or office with an optical disc you’ll be able to use it. Wherever you are, so is your media. As one technical trainer says, “I have done training sessions all over the world and the one thing I never worry about is getting my content to appear or play—it’s always on a CD or DVD.”

Safe and sound.

Technology is available to password protect optical media, further securing and protecting important and private records, data and media. Rimage embeds this technology into its systems to make password protection of disc content as easy as checking a box and typing in a robust password. Do you want to prevent unauthorized duplication of video content? A different check box enables video protection that does not interfere with playability. Both can be used on-demand—for one disc or hundreds of discs. Optical media proves a storage solution that is safe and secure—protecting your information from those who shouldn’t have it so you can easily provide it to those who should.

What does optical media have that printed media doesn’t?

Granted, we do not yet live in a paperless world. Paper is still prevalent at home, school and in the workplace, and it is still an effective means of amassing and communicating information. A printed product brochure can have great photos, diagrams, copy, color and, ultimately, a great impact. But it can’t have moving demos, flash videos or recorded end-user testimonials. With optical media, you can provide everything printed media can and much more. You can, for example, record a complete product catalog, embed an interactive system selector and have music play while the user reads the disc. And that’s just the beginning. With advantages like these, you can reach your established customer or fan base and go the extra mile.

A label is worth a thousand words.

Optical media has it all. Effective and affordable storage capabilities? Check. Ease of distribution? Check. Longevity, protection and versatility? Check, check and check. Add printing ability to this combination and you’ve got a world-class solution. A 120 mm optical disc is the only form of data storage and transportation that has enough real estate on the surface to tell a user what’s on the disc before it is inserted into a computer. If a disc contains music, you can print a label that lists all the songs, times and artists right on the surface. If it’s software, you can print the

version, revision level, platform, language and even the fine print in your legal disclaimer—and still have plenty of room for your corporate logo. Furthermore, since the data on a disc lasts up to 100 years, it makes sense to have label printing that lasts just as long.

Rimage’s Everest thermal retransfer printing lives up to these expectations. We use the same print technology used on credit cards, which is strong, durable and time-tested. Find out more about Everest printers and Rimage’s optical media solutions at www.rimage.com.