In your DVD reviews you have Sony listed in both the 1st class AND 2nd class tiers. How can I tell which is which? The one type in the 2nd class tier is also listed in the 1st class. How do I differentiate when I go to the store to buy?
Look carefully at the charts
one more time. The distinction is the country of origin.
Daxon manufacturers Sony media to Sony specs in both Taiwan and Malaysia, and is sold in Sony-branded spindles. The Taiwan made discs are top quality, FIRST CLASS rated discs.
Discs made in Malaysia are the second-class media, generally performing poorer than the Sony-spec discs from Taiwan and Japan.
The discs from Japan are no longer produced to my knowledge, the information now exists mostly for archive (for folks who have the discs already burned, and want to know where they fall compared to others). Taiyo Yuden manufactured those, and those discs were superior to the Taiwan discs! At one point, Sony carried actual TY-coded media in the 8x days.
At one time, LeadData was known to make Sony discs, but I never saw them outside of generic house-branded media. Fry's GQ, for example, was known to carry Lead Data manufactured SONY-coded discs. A female person claiming to work for Lead Data once contacted me like a raving lunatic, insisting LD made "at least half" of Sony-branded discs, but LD would never confirm this when I asked. Like most other manufacturers or disc brands, they are reluctant to say ANYTHING about the manufacturing or branding process. I still get the feeling lots of companies are pissed off that consumers know about the entire process (especially about the shady aspects of it, such as re-branding discard-quality crap and selling it under major name brands). I figure she was just another online nutjob, a faker using a free webmail address pretending to be somebody important.
The most important thing here is:
- Buy MADE IN TAIWAN Sony discs
- Avoid MADE IN MALAYSIA Sony discs
.... for the best experience.