Friday, December 17, 2010

Storing Jdoramas

The good old days of multiple language vcd subs. Actually the English in the vcd shows were better than the current HK/China DVDs.

Back in the old days when most jdoramas were videotapes captures of subtitled shows from Hawaiian and Singaporean TV, it was rare to get 350mb avi files, usually from JTV and ADClan. Why was 350mb so awesome? So one could fit 2 episodes into 1cd. Most of the tv captures were at least 500mb so it was 1 cd per episode. Some episodes were slightly more than 700mb so that required overburning. Thank the jdorama gods I don't have to do it anymore. Always a huge chance the cd would have some defect or would only be able to be read by certain cdroms.

The only show where I ever liked her in.

On the flipside, there weren't that many doramas out there so it was easier to double burn cds, ie have two copies of everything. Cause if there is one certainty in life besides death and taxes, its that cds/dvds/HDD will die. HDD were about $1 per mb and I remember being happy buying a 250mb.

The best jdorama superhero ever.

Then along came the mighty DVD burner and broadband. Finally, file sizes didn't matter and the ability to have 1 whole series in 1~3 dvds was a godsend. More and more jdoramas were being subbed and keeping the dvds in spindles made it difficult to search through them. My room became littered with dvd pouches as I began the slow process of reburning all my doramas on cds to dvds, a mission I have yet to complete till this day.

I kinda miss the 'Kiku telebi!' jingle from the beginning of each episode.

However, problem of temporary media continued to rear its ugly head. There was nothing like the despair of popping in a dvd after a few years and getting 'cyclic redundancy error'. Double burning was no safeguard against the ravages of time. It was essential to triple burn my favourite series. I bought the more expensive blank DVD brands because I wanted to increase all likelihood, no matter how little that my jdoramas would survive.

With around 1/3 of new jdoramas being subbed every season, burning jdoramas has become a chore. The possibility of a dead HDD always loomed in the background so it was a necessary chore. As my dvd collection got bigger, it was essential to store them in dvd boxes for easy access as it is easier to put them in alphabetical order.

Now, something has happened to change the way we store jdoramas. HDD prices have come crashing down while size has gone up. It might be actually cheaper to just store them in HDD instead of burning them. Recently, I just got a 2TB for $AUD96 and have begun the slow arduous process of copying all my doramas into the HDD.

Goto Maki, before she sang Te wo nigite and ruined everything.

This process has been painful and terrifying. The fear after finding out I am unable to copy a certain episode and the frantic search for a second copy of the series. Even worse, I have discovered that there are some jdoramas that I have not fully burnt. I popped in my only copy of Flowers of Algernon only to discover that it only contained half of the series! Oh, the despair!! I thought I was missing the last two episodes of Amai Seikatsu only to find them burned into the dvd of another series! I'm missing the first half of Shibatora and I hold the faint hope that it will turn up somewhere in my room. Not that I like Shibatora but Ohgo Suzuka is good. Sadly she hasn't really been in anything recently. The past week has been a slow process of looking and relooking through hundreds of dvds trying to find old shows, cursing myself for being slack and disorganised in my burning duties.

I think the best answer to storage is to have two mirror HDDs and to get a new one every few years. Burn a copy for shows that I like but this will prevent my room from being overrun by DVD pouches. Soon, 10 years of being a jdorama addict will be able to fit into one HDD. All the DVD pouches, spindles and boxes minimised into one. Of course, I've still got my J and Kmovies, manga, anime and Jpop but this is a start. In a few years when we can get 10TB for $100, I'll be able to fit my whole life's entertainment into one HDD.

I think this could have been from an LD rip?

All I want to say is, its never too soon to organise your jdoramas. Recent shows can be redownloaded through megaupload but old and unsubbed shows are hard to find except through trading. While DVDs and HDDs don't last forever, its much easier to store 2TB of doramas than 2 DVDs worth.

 I should have kept a copy of the vcd version with English, Malay and Chinese subs.


keiko1981 said...

Looks at screencaps (recognized Seija no Koushin there).
I think your collection is greater than mine. At the moment I've got some 300+ DVDs with dramas and my 1TB HDD is almost full. :(
Something I've been thinking of is the fansubbed/captured dramas when it comes to trading or exchanging dramas with each other.
Most fansubbers do not want to see their subbed projects on streaming sites, but what are their thoughts on their dramas being traded/exchanged via mail with others?
Or is it the one trading's responsible to inform/or keep track of dramas that fansubbers do not want to be shared.

keiko1981 said...

10 years of being a jdorama addict
You've got me curious Mike *scratches head* How old.
Wild guess, add a few years, remove a few years, 30 something?

Jung said...

Lol sounds like I'm reading my own journal.

How times have changed right? I remember spending $15 for 10pack of FDHD 1.4MB disks. lolz.. Then Iomega Zip drive came along! Only $20 for 100mb!

What's funny is though, as storage have become cheaper, the less I burn. I throw away over 98% of shows I download, whereas before, I used to burn everything.

But you're right, DVD burning day is over. And even though bluray holds 6 times more data, it is exactly 6 times more expensive.

The best way to have a Raid 1 setup like you said, or just have scheduled mirroring setup.

Anonymous said...


Most fansubbers also require that you check with them before taking a leak. Violations of this rule has caused many dramas to not ever be completed, so please make sure you hold it until you have the ok.

maiku said...

Great post. You read my mind on Ohgo Suzuka! She carried Sexy Voice and Robo and even got me to fidget through the first 2 eps of Shibatora. Brilliant, much overlooked actress.

You've convinced me to start moving stuff to HDD. At least my old eps of Soko Ga Shiritai and Happy Family Plan. (k e a l !)

puupaa said...


same thing here. There just isn't many new jdramas worth burning.

Joe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe said...

You should really consider sticking some of these up on D-Addicts. Looks like you have a lot of rare stuff.

Jung said...

puupaa, thanks for recommending GM-Odore Doctor. I don't know why but I didn't even know about this show until you pointed it out.

It's a pretty funny show indeed. The cast is just about perfect for the script too. They definitely paid a lot of attention to dialog, timing and editting to maximize the fun factor, but in all subtle ways. I think it's a hidden gem... even though I've only seen 3 eps. lol.

puupaa said...

You're welcome

Akiramike said...

I'm 21 at heart but on paper, I'm pretty close to your age.

Older shows I want to keep no matter how bad but really bad newer shows like Buzzer Beat, I can't be bothered.

I would like to upload my rare stuff to d-addicts but I always reach my ISP limit every month which includes uploads. Maybe uploading to megaupload might be a better idea. Not sure how long they last for though.