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Laser Rot

Well, Laser Rot is a problem important enough to deserve a dedicated page.

Metal Layer Oxydation (also called laser rot) is the plague of LDs. Impossible to forecast, useless to fight, it can happen anytime during the lifetime of a disc. Hopefully not all LD titles manufactured are suffering from this disease and some Factories are more famous than others on this issue (SONY DADC being #1).

Current Status 8108 reports on 4596 titles representing 0.97% of total collections
Top 100 LDs
(realtime)
  1. Eraser [14202]  (9936)
  2. Air Force One: Special Edition [71886]  (7920)
  3. Starship Troopers [71716]  (4655)
  4. Jumanji [11746]  (3404)
  5. Cable Guy, The [82426]  (3276)
  6. Net, The [11616]  (3256)
  7. Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls [23500]  (3115)
  8. Copycat [14168]  (2905)
  9. Men in Black [82656]  (2695)
  10. Contact: Special Edition [15041]  (2555)
  11. Under Siege 2: Dark Territory [13665]  (2233)
  12. Lost Highway [ID3946PG]  (2100)
  13. Heavy Metal [74656]  (1890)
  14. Professional, The [74746]  (1525)
  15. Shawshank Redemption, The [74596]  (1525)
  16. Striptease [84976]  (1500)
  17. Beauty and the Beast: Work in Progress [1591 CS]  (1458)
  18. Fugitive, The [21000]  (1430)
  19. Dante's Peak [43311]  (1248)
  20. Fifth Element, The [82406]  (1248)
  21. Fan, The [82476]  (1218)
  22. Game, The [ID4260PG]  (1122)
  23. Fargo [800638693-1]  (1104)
  24. Demolition Man [12985]  (882)
  25. Volcano [0603985]  (836)
  26. Gattaca [82646]  (648)
  27. Boot, Das (The Boat) [99916]  (612)
  28. Multiplicity [82446]  (612)
  29. Willow [79356]  (592)
  30. Batman Returns [15000]  (544)
  31. Fair Game [14072]  (544)
  32. Ace Ventura: Pet Detective [23000]  (525)
  33. First Knight [71176]  (504)
  34. Bad Boys [10716]  (496)
  35. Johnny Mnemonic [73476]  (486)
  36. The Beatles: Let It Be [4508-80]  (442)
  37. Mute Witness [41176]  (429)
  38. Star Wars Trilogy: Definitive Collection [0693-84]  (416)
  39. Dolores Claiborne [59906]  (377)
  40. Barb Wire [800639927-1]  (377)
  41. I Know What You Did Last Summer: Special Edition [23926]  (364)
  42. Grumpier Old Men [14191]  (351)
  43. I Come in Peace [LVD9603]  (336)
  44. Batman & Robin [16500]  (325)
  45. Tin Cup [14318]  (324)
  46. Fire Down Below [14914]  (312)
  47. WarGames [4714-80]  (308)
  48. Aliens: Special Widescreen Collector's Edition [1504-85]  (294)
  49. Donnie Brasco [82516]  (288)
  50. Double Team [83236]  (286)
  51. Anaconda [81756]  (286)
  52. Hunchback of Notre Dame, The [7955 AS]  (276)
  53. Abyss, The: Special Edition [1988-85]  (242)
  54. To Die For [73436]  (240)
  55. Devil's Own, The [82466]  (240)
  56. Hamlet [94996]  (231)
  57. Blade Runner: Director's Cut [12682]  (230)
  58. Craft, The [82416]  (220)
  59. Blade Runner: Special Edition [CC1120L]  (220)
  60. Switchblade Sisters: Special Edition [RT1001L]  (216)
  61. Maximum Risk [27416]  (200)
  62. Crimes of Passion: Special Edition [LVD9523]  (198)
  63. Dracula: Dead and Loving It [80096]  (198)
  64. Jerry Maguire [82536]  (180)
  65. ABBA [74-006]  (168)
  66. Hoodlum [ML106282]  (162)
  67. Video Standard, A [LD-101]  (160)
  68. Alien: Special Widescreen Collector's Edition [1090-85]  (156)
  69. Lethal Weapon 2 [11876]  (144)
  70. Sense and Sensibility [11596]  (144)
  71. 300 [113764]  (140)
  72. Lawrence of Arabia [79626]  (140)
  73. American President, The [80176]  (140)
  74. Raw Deal [LVD9545]  (140)
  75. Tuff Turf [I-5027]  (136)
  76. Sword and the Sorcerer, The [13-010]  (136)
  77. Last Action Hero [27936]  (136)
  78. Grosse Pointe Blank [10040 AS]  (135)
  79. Michael Jackson: Making Michael Jackson's Thriller [VL1000]  (133)
  80. Now You Can See the Music [080 546-1]  (133)
  81. Gunsmith Cats Chapter: vol.1 [CAVGS/001]  (133)
  82. Kate Bush: The Whole Story [080 504-1]  (126)
  83. Boyz N the Hood: Special Edition [CC1289L]  (126)
  84. JFK [12306]  (126)
  85. Desperado: Special Edition [11656]  (126)
  86. Replacement Killers, The [21626]  (120)
  87. Disclosure [13575]  (120)
  88. Eurythmics: Live [080 220-1]  (119)
  89. Buck Rogers in the 25th Century [13-002]  (119)
  90. Adventures of Baron Munchausen, The [76986]  (114)
  91. Dire Straits: Brothers in Arms [080 166-9]  (114)
  92. Seven Years in Tibet [21816]  (112)
  93. Fish Called Wanda, A [4752-80]  (108)
  94. Pavarotti & Friends: For War Child [440 074 202-1]  (108)
  95. Close to You: Remembering the Carpenters [CLV7278]  (108)
  96. Day After, The [13755]  (108)
  97. Dirty Dancing [ID5172]  (108)
  98. Muppet Treasure Island [7076 AS]  (108)
  99. Usual Suspects, The [800638689-1]  (105)
  100. Extreme Measures [94926]  (105)
"Score" is defined as (Rot Level x Nb of Reports)
Top 10 Makers
(realtime)
  1. DADC USA  (1869)
  2. Pioneer USA  (1336)
  3. PDO UK  (917)
  4. Pioneer Japan  (726)
  5. 3M or IMATION  (424)
  6. Mitsubishi  (300)
  7. Kuraray  (244)
  8. Technidisc  (182)
  9. DiscoVision (MCA)  (157)
  10. DADC Austria  (152)
Ranking is defined as Nb of Reports/Factory

Note that humidity/water do not provoke laser rot. I sadly had a water disaster in my basement and some of my LDs spent 8 hours half immersed in freezing water. Except for the damaged covers and inserts, the disc are still playing nicely.

The main consequence of rot are those "multicolor video speckles/lines" appearing randomly on your screen and becoming more visible at the start or at the beginning of a side.

A stronger consequence can also affect the Digital Audio Tracks that will play with "clicks" and sometimes become completely mute for a few 10th of second because the data is so distored that it has no more meaning for your A/V Amp. This happened to me on Princess Bride CRITERION.

The final effect of a deadly rot will be a completely unwatchable LD. The player simply won't find it's start/timing/chapter sequence and give up playing after several tentatives.

Note that 8" LD Single do not use glue to keep the two sides together and should not be affected by laser rot. None reported so far.

Also, rot is disc/side dependant and could affect Side A while Side B remains untouched. People with access to several copies of the same set might sometimes be able to "reconstruct" a rot-free full set by checking each disc individually and selecting only the good ones.