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View Full Version : Lens Cleaning CDR CD-RW (how?)



Richard N
02-11-2002, 09:33 PM
Hi,
can someone tell me please how you clean a CDRW lens and if the standard cleaners you see in DSE etc will clean these. I have been told that you can't use these disks on RW drives by someone but would like this confirmed by some knowledgable person.

Thanks Richard

gibler
02-11-2002, 11:00 PM
Well looking at DSE's website they sell a cleaner that does CDRW..
I can't see any reason why CDRWs are any different from a lenses point of view.

Then again I can't see how your lens would get so dirty. If you have a lot of dust inside the drive you'd really need to blow it out with compressed air.

vk_dre
03-11-2002, 09:52 AM
i'm not sure, but doesn't blowing compressed air onto a lens, damage the lens?

godfather
03-11-2002, 10:30 AM
Why do you think the lens is dirty?

Anytime I have been asked to clean a CD lens, its never turned out to be a lens problem, its always been that the drive was at or near the end of its life.

And to clean, I have always disassembled the unit and used isoproyl alcohol. The lens assembly is delicate, you would use a "brush-type" disk cleaner at your own risk.

tweak\'e
03-11-2002, 10:54 AM
there is special cleaning fluid for cd drives. if you use the wrong stuff it can damage the lens. personally i just take the drive apart and clean it.(and give the pads which clamp on to the cd a cleanup so they grip better)

vk_dre
03-11-2002, 11:40 AM
U guys mean to actually take it out and reach inside the drive?! Will it improve performance a bit, if the drive is pretty old like 2yrs?

tweak\'e
03-11-2002, 11:58 AM
take cd rom out ..take cover off, take any other covers/parts off to get access to lazer. use the proper cleaning fluid with the proper cleaning sticks (they don't leave bits behind like cotton buds do) give it a small blast of air and pesto ,,,one clean lens. some cd's have a seperate lens and lazer which can be fun when dust gets between lazer and lens.

i live in the countryside so we have a wee problem with dust in pc's.

Graham L
03-11-2002, 01:38 PM
"special cleaning liquid" ... yes there is: isopropyl alcohol. Meths is not a good idea. That will make most (transparent) plastics "cloudy". :_|

But dust is not likely to be a problem usually ... the sort of "dirt" which will affect the system is gunge which forms a film on the lens ... smoke, traffic fumes, etc.

"old age" is the usual problem. Lasers don't last forever. The output power at a constant currrent reduces over time. There is an adjustment, but it's critical. (At least you don't have to worry about the helium leaking [i]through[[/] the glass tube of an HeNe laser)

vk_dre
03-11-2002, 04:35 PM
but will it improve performance?

Graham Petrie
03-11-2002, 04:46 PM
> but will it improve performance?

Only if you are getting lots of read errors etc. If you have not noticed a performance drop since you bought the drive, lense cleaning will not give you a performance gain. It may or may not in any case depending on the cause for the performance drop. It may be worn motors or circuitry causing problems, not the laser. You still have not said what problem you are experiencing.

G P

vk_dre
03-11-2002, 04:51 PM
> > but will it improve performance?
>
> Only if you are getting lots of read errors etc. If
> you have not noticed a performance drop since you
> bought the drive, lense cleaning will not give you a
> performance gain. It may or may not in any case
> depending on the cause for the performance drop. It
> may be worn motors or circuitry causing problems, not
> the laser. You still have not said what problem you
> are experiencing.

my problems or Richard's ones? this thread is richards, i was just curious about the gain in performance, i got no errors with my drive. :)

Graham Petrie
03-11-2002, 05:07 PM
No errors, no gain. Sorry, I forgot who started the thread. But in any case, you will not gain performance unless there is performance to be gained. In other words if your drive is reading and writing with no errors on the disc (do a scan disc) then you will not improve performance by cleaning the lense - how can you improve on perfection? It will not speed up your drive etc.

G P

vk_dre
03-11-2002, 05:11 PM
ok, ok, i understand. :D

Graham L
04-11-2002, 03:09 PM
The usual cause of "it's stopped working" is that a particular CD can't be read. There's so much redundancy recorded on the CDs that a lot of errors are "recognised and corrected".

It's only when the contrast of the reflected signal gets below a critical point that you can not read. A film on the lens, or on the CD, or major scratches or a "hole above a certain size" (I believe that a CD should be still readable with a 1/4" diameter hole punched in it :D) is what causes this. If the laser power is reduced by old age, this can get below the sensistivity of the detectors.

rayonline
05-11-2002, 02:36 PM
would u say using the liquid from a bottle of TDK VCR video cassette liquid to clean the lens of the DVD/CD is ok??

Saves me costs of buying if it can be used.

Rayonline

Graham L
05-11-2002, 04:08 PM
I tend to assume that the bottles with "headcleaners" whether cassette, video, floppy disk ... are isopropyl alcohol, and therefore OK to use. If you are in any doubt, try a drop or two on a piece of clear perspex. If it dissolves it or makes it cloudy, it's not safe to use. :D

Richard N
05-11-2002, 07:06 PM
I would like to thanks one and all for replying to my query. I now feel well versed in the art of CD lens cleaning and am amazed at the responsiveness of everyone above.

Thanks again Richard