CD treatments

default -- Thu, 12/18/2008 - 21:14

There are many CD treatments offered...such as Audio Desk trim the edges...they just introduced a cleaner/polisher....there are also a number of cleaners/polishers on the market....does anyone have experience...comments on these devices.  I ask this because my local dealer "cleaned" one of my "dirty....scratched CDs" from Mosaic....and not only did scratch/skip go away...boy does it sound better....any thoughts from folks out I deceiving myself or does this approach make sense...???

JPH-22 -- Sat, 12/27/2008 - 02:04

The best thing to do is slow-burn copies of your CDs to gold CDRs. Then use a disc solution / finalizer like that reviewed by Robert Harley in TAS earlier this year. This is a one-time (only) application. Finally, you should de-magnetize your discs between plays. This is easy...and it works.
I don't know if TAS reviewers do all these things - but they should, as long as they are not using hardisk or memory for their digital-drive......

Robert Harley -- Sat, 12/27/2008 - 11:03

It's a mystery why some of these disc-treatment products work, but in my experience, they can improve the sound. I'm working on a story on different CD substrate materials (including glass), and will have a full report in an upcoming issue.

brian -- Mon, 01/05/2009 - 10:58

Sounds interesting. In my experience the treatments all do something, but whether they improve the sound is subject to debate. Some roll off the highs, perhaps in an effort to reduce digititis.

Brian Walsh
Essential Audio  ~  Chicago area ~ 773-809-HIFI (4434)

BlueAdept -- Tue, 01/06/2009 - 20:34

Does anyone have anything other than annecdotal evidence that these types of solutions actually improves the sound quality? I've tried a couple, and imagine theres a difference, but certainly couldn't tell in a blind test. While I'm not a DBT proponent by any means, the technical side of me debates the viability of these solutions.
As far as I know, there can only be two aspects that these solutions can help with;
(1) allows the CD transport to read the information off the disc with less errors, and
(2) thus potentially reducing the "jitter" in the CD transport's synchronous digital stream because of lesser re-reads.
However, (1) has been proven time and time again to be a non-issue even with the cheapest of CD transports. But no one seems to have spent any time exploring (2) -  perhaps this is something TAS can explore?

JPH-22 -- Mon, 01/12/2009 - 13:55

I should also note that instead of de-magnetizing our discs between plays, we can blow ions (yes, ions) on to the disc with Acoustic Revive's negative ion "blower". First reports of this technique are very promising.
One would think that with CDRs, finalizer solutions, ion treatment and good footing/support, hardisk playback suddenly doesn't look like the big advance it was purported to be.........

hikejohn -- Tue, 01/13/2009 - 19:50

Interesting....I never paid any attention to CD treatments until I went to my local dealer (interestingly enough I work with Ivan who wrote a letter to TAS a few months ago)...for something/ clean/fix several problems CDs I had.  Ivan kindly cleaned it...I offered to buy some of the stuff...but alas it seems there is a small least in Raleigh...thus making it hard for a dealer to stock and sell these type of products.  Thus I went on to look around at what is available from the market...I purchased three items:
    1.  a cleaner/clarifier all cases it seem to make the mid range better defined...and if bass was in the recording...obviously go deeper
    2.  purchased a Audio Disk lathe...which rounds the CD, lets you put 38degree angle on edge...then apply a black mask on edge....seems to provide a further improvement....pleasantly surprised.....
   3.  lastly...and most silly an Acoustic Revive demag unit for CD....all by provides additional improvement as to clarity....
all of these steps move things to a more natural...musical sound that I enjoy...I am glad I went down this path...which for me never would have seemed logical a few months ago

Robert Harley -- Wed, 01/14/2009 - 14:46

Thanks for sharing that experience. I recently acquired pairs of discs that contain the same data, but pressed on different substrate materials (including glass). I'll have a full report in an upcoming issue.

Jack Durrett II (not verified) -- Mon, 01/26/2009 - 14:44

 Whatever happened to the technique of applying green ink to the edge of cds?  This was a hot topic years ago.  I tried it but couldn't tell any difference.   If it did improve the sound then either my hearing wasn't good enough or my system wasn't or a combination of both.

JD (not verified) -- Sun, 05/16/2010 - 03:12

I do hear a difference and treat it as normal procedurenow, but being a cheap skate I use a black Staedtler permanent marker /German/ the biggest I could buy with 12mm felt ink 'tip from a graphics supplier.
I did a further test. I had a CD previously cleaaned with Methanol (Lab Analysis Grade - leaves NO residue - hard to source btw). Its inner and outer rdges were heavvily blackened - outer edge, wrapping around the edge as much as possible, inner edge and clear land around the centre hole, both sides blackened.
I demagnetized the disc and got a good fix on its sonics. Much of the printed label side was then blackened.
There was a subtle but noticeable diffrence - the music was more accessable, strings less clogged eg. The difference became more obvious after I demaged the fully inked disc.
I'd suppposed the improvement was due to a reduction of laser scatterwithin the disc, and an increase in the S/N ratio of thre HF RF stream coming off the disc.

So 'blackening' CDs makes a difference ? Yes
Worth it (for a portion of my discs) ? Yes
For everybody ? No it messy/ black fingers.

Better still is the Audio Desk CD lathe (plus blackening). it makes a fundamental difference.

Wasatch -- Mon, 03/02/2009 - 19:52

Shine O La works pretty good.

kodg -- Sun, 08/15/2010 - 10:03

There is a good restoring CD DIY on Virtual Dynamics web site by Rick Shultz that you would find helpful.  Black permanent marker around the outside & inner ring does a great job.

randyorton -- Sat, 09/25/2010 - 05:12

This is really a nice idea for a CD treatment which can help us to improve the affecting the CD's to protect them everytime by an easy handle use. There are minor things for this to be taken care. These tips can be very useful specially for Audio Post Production and Video Post Production companies because these thing are most used by them. Thanks for sharing these great piece of information with us. I would like to thanks author for this great read...
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randyorton -- Sat, 09/25/2010 - 05:14

These tips can be really useful and may help a lot for precauting the CD's for a long time. The most sensitive thing about the CD's are the the main side of CD where the data is to be copied I think that it should be improved little bit more. Thanks for sharing nice information. I liked the info very much...
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coopersark -- Sat, 12/17/2011 - 17:28

I want to share my amazingly positive experience with the new Marigo Evolution Signature CD Tuning Mat. I have used Marigo's CD mats over the years from their very first offering, I believe about fifteen or so years ago. The Evolution Signature mat is the fourth iteration of the Marigo mat. Each successive "generation" had wrought positive improvements from my Mark Levinson Reference 31.5 transport. (While the top loading Levinson comes with its own CD clamp, I have ordered parts from Levinson and have made my own CD clamp, substituting their carbon fiber disk for your Marigo mat.) The latest Evolution Signature mat's improvement is so substantial that it is a larger "jump" in performance than from the standard Levinson clamp to the last generation "V2 Reference" mat!
I hear a startling increase in the focus of imaging placement within the sound stage. The focus of everything in that sound stage is both tighter and possesses a three dimensional body that most digital simply lacks. Tone saturation is richer. The bass not only goes deeper, but is more tuneful as well. The highs are better defined and extended. The mid range is the icing on the cake. Voices are much better defined and clarified, combined with the improvement in density of tone and harmonic texture now sound shockingly real and alive. The sense of space and performance venue is greatly improved as well.

Overall the music has so much more of a relaxed quality to it similar to that of master tape analogue that allows me to simply listen to the music and not work as hard having my brain trying to connect the "digital dots". The increased resolution, focus, dynamics, detail, sense of space, articulation, and what I would call a "continuousness" of saturated tone, all combine to literally transform my digital playback to a level that I have never experienced before! I know that this must seem like hyperbole. The overall improvement is SHOCKING!

In the context of my high end system the $200 that I had paid for Evolution Signature mat that replaced the Reference V2 mat, was the cheapest money that I have ever spent for the most improvement in my system!

If anyone has a Reference V2 mat, they may be loathe to replace it, as it is most excellent. I can tell you from first hand experience, that the new Evolution signature mat is on a whole different and much higher level of sonic improvement.

For anyone has never tried a Marigo CD mat or any mat for that matter, this is the one to have. This is not just a simple "tweak", this is an essential and basically "give away" priced in terms of the substantial sonic upgrade that truly must be experienced to be believed. In the context of my high end audio system, this is making an improvement that I did not think possible and at a price that was ridiculously low. Based on my listening experience, this may be the biggest bargain in audio today!


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