Despite the predictions that CDs and DVDs might go extinct by the year 2020, the likelihood of that happening seems to be very low. CDs are a very safe way to keep information, be it on music, your wedding, or graduation. They are also romantic and permanent as compared to other forms of storage which can be overwritten. Though there are many methods to print CDs and DVDs, most people and companies often use duplication and replication. So what are the differences between these two approaches?
Duplication is transferring data from a master disc to several blank drives, and the process is much like burning a CD with your laptop. The content in the master disc be it music, movie or files will be copied precisely the way they are and saved in the new drives. A process of quality control is then carried out by comparing both discs to ensure the data is identical.
CD replication is a bit more complicated as the manufacturer has to compile all the data and verify its accuracy first. The data is then placed on a glass master which is a template that will also be used to develop a stamper. A glass master typically takes up to 3 days to make, and then the stamper created is loaded into a molding machine that makes the replicates.
Cost and Efficiency
Duplication is the most preferred method of printing because it is swift, and the CDs can be digitally printed with many colors at no extra charge. CD duplication makes complete discs [CD-R], and it is a suitable method if you need less than 1500 copies. However, the cost of duplication per unit is not cheap, so if you have a huge order, the price will quickly go high.
The unit cost of replicated CDS is cheaper meaning it's the best method if you need more than 1500 units. However, this process is a bit slow and can take up to a week to complete plus replication companies usually don't accept orders of less than 1000 copies. CD replication also makes CD-ROM which means read-only, and they cannot be copied or rewritten.
From this analysis, it is clear that duplication and replication are both excellent methods of printing discs and neither of them is better than the other. The choice comes down to your company's needs, how much time you have and the purpose of your discs. People who want a few rewritable CDs very fast are better off using duplication, but a large order will require replication.