DVD Storage Solutions?
June 6, 2005 4:28 PM   Subscribe

What are some good ideas for storing 1K+ dvds?

Should be re-sortable, minimal wear on discs, and remain easy to access. Currently I'm using books that hold 96 dsics. They are a good grouping size (Animation, Sci-Fi, Classics) but they are getting unwieldy, plus it's some wear on the discs to get them in and out. I've seen some nice little mini-filing cabinets that have hanging files big enough for a disc, but there as got to be an awesome option I just haven't found... mefite powers activate!
posted by folktrash to Computers & Internet (17 answers total)
Rip them and store on a removeable hard drive RAID array in an external enclosure. Something like this.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:06 PM on June 6, 2005

I'd say that's a little out of my price range. But it sure would be sweet!
posted by folktrash at 5:11 PM on June 6, 2005

Well, you could compress them into high-quality AVI's first, then just get a four drive enclosure (this will fit in most tower cases). Fill it with 300 Gb drives and you should be all set. And as a bonus, you can stream the data over a network to your entire house on-demand.

What is your price range?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:23 PM on June 6, 2005

I'm looking more for disc storage and retreival than the data equivalent... 300 gigs is only some 60 discs, and we're talking 1000 discs. plus i prefer watching them on my tv, via dvd player. As for price range, it's all about per disc (movie) cost. As long as I can keep the total cost below ~$5 per disc, I'm down. Currently it's less than a buck per disc counting blanks, books, and the dvd drive. I'd be willing to spend another $1 per disc if it's a good solution...

Thanks for the help.... keep it comin'
posted by folktrash at 5:38 PM on June 6, 2005


a long time ago at the mall, i saw this kiosk where the seller was selling this large cylindrical plastic thing. it was a cd storage device, and i think it might be what you're looking for...unfortunately, it's been so long that i don't remember the exact name of it, and i'm sure the kiosk is gone by now.

picture something about the size of a loaf of bread, lying horizontally on the table (or just picture a bread box). the front of it slides upward like one of those old covered desks, and on the inside is a row of dividers where you store cds like slices of bread--but none of the slices touch each other because of spacers between them that hold them in place.
it's like taking a vertical stack of cds, then making it horizontal. that's how you store cds in here.

furthermore, each slot where you put a cd has a number, and there is a little pull-out drawer under the thing where you can paste an index of your inventory for quick reference later. i don't remember how many cds it holds, but keep in mind it is about the size of a loaf of bread.

this contraption makes indexing and managing your inventory real easy, and puts absolutely no wear on the discs since they don't touch anything.

does anybody know the name for this thing i'm talking about? i think it might be perfect for folktrash's needs.

since i've got the week off, maybe i'll head over to that mall for kicks and see if that kiosk is still around.
posted by Ziggy Zaga at 5:41 PM on June 6, 2005

oh, snap--

when i read "1K+ dvds," i thought you were referring to disk capacity, not quantity of disks. lol :)

i don't think my suggestion would work then.
posted by Ziggy Zaga at 5:44 PM on June 6, 2005

What are some good ideas for storing 1K+ dvds?

Over here at my place? ;)

Some suggestions.
posted by ori at 5:50 PM on June 6, 2005

3x Sony DVP-CX985V = $900 and space for 1200 discs. Can't go wrong!
posted by trevyn at 6:10 PM on June 6, 2005

I'd personally be inclined to build something or have something built out of wood to store them in (I'm thinking walk-in here). If you've spent the time to collect over a thousand DVDs, you might as well take the time to display them properly.

Of course, if these are DVDs that don't have cases, see above.
posted by devilsbrigade at 6:47 PM on June 6, 2005

Can-Am, if you have some budget. I bought a cabinet for my 1500 CDs and i love it.
posted by softlord at 7:48 PM on June 6, 2005

I've actually been having this same problem myself. This is a very lowtech, uncool solution, but I've been using the junky plastic pegs that come with DVD+RW when you buy them from the store. You can get one peg that holds a hundred discs. Ten of these would only take up maybe a 4 foot by 1 foot space, maybe just a small corner in a typical entertainment center. Aside from the aesthetic problem, the only other disadvantage is organization, but you can sort the discs alphabetically or have a Word Doc or list that groups everything. I don't know if you need to buy the CDs or DVDs to get these things, but they're definitely a lot better space-wise than books.
posted by kensanway at 7:55 PM on June 6, 2005

You should take some very careful steps to keep those DVD's out of direct sunlight. Are we talking consumer DVDs or DVD-+R's?

If the recordable type, then it is critical to keep them away from moisture as much as possible and handle as little as required. The Sony DVD reader thing is a great idea because it would accomplish all the requirements.

You have a lot of data. My Terabyte of disk space pales in comparison.
posted by Dean Keaton at 8:33 PM on June 6, 2005

I collect live lossless music performances on CD & DVD, a collection that runs currently at ~800 discs. The only method I came up with that seems to work for me is slim jewel cases stored in large (4x discs wide by 75x discs deep) tupperwareish containers. Each slimcase is labeled on the spine as to what it's contents are, and I've got everything sorted alphebetically and then by date. It's worked for the last couple of years for me, although you'd be AMAZED at how incredibly freaking heavy those tubs are. Not fun to move - But it is clean, organized, and easy to store. For a reasonably cheap solution, it can't be beat.
posted by rabble at 12:02 AM on June 7, 2005

I bought a cd cabinet at an unpainted furniture place. It's got 8 drawers, and I'm betting I will be able to jam at least 125 in per drawer.
posted by beth at 3:24 AM on June 7, 2005

thank you all - let's try for more! :)

indeed these are DVD-R discs. *ahem* And I expect the total count to peak somewheres around 5K or so, at least more than 2K+ anyway.

I've seen those cylinders... something like this?

That disc changer/storage device is indeed an option. The only issue woud be having to hook them all up, or change the connection... plus I imagine the browsing is cumbersome...

The pegs are indeed the best use of space, but you have to remove 99 discs if you want the bottom one, or even to tell what the bottom what is...

I like the idea of tupperwear-ish items as well, but I'd like to stay away from having to label the disc *and* a case of some sort...

As for the software cataloging idea... that is the real rub of this question... should I totally abstract storage from retrieval? meaning, barcodes (most efficient) and use software to track, then get a barcode scanner/reader of some sort.

What I like most about the books is the ability to browse...

You all rule.
posted by folktrash at 10:25 AM on June 7, 2005

Well, if you're really serious about this--and if you're willing to pay $5/disc, I'd say you are--automated storage via a DVD changer really sounds like the way to go. If the Sony DVD changers are anything like their CD changers, they will let you input titles for each disc and scroll through with a rotary dial. There also existed software/hardware (Slink-e) that could computer-control the changer, though I think a fancy IR remote might be a better solution for you. Pick up something like a Pronto that you could enter your entire collection into and browse electronically from the couch. This kind of thing isn't that uncommon in high-end home theater, I'm sure there are resources around to help. It's a little bit of work to set up yourself, but I suspect you might not mind.

Then connect all your changers to an A/V reciever and program the remote to automatically switch input as necessary. Or, if you insist, you could use them purely as motorized storage and not have to deal with the A/V connections, but that really misses the point. If you never touch the discs, you don't have to worry so much about where they go.

Since your DVDs aren't originals anyway, I don't really understand the "browsing" need; couldn't you just browse a reference sheet? Or are you crazy and print labels and everything too? In which case you could go really crazy and get lots of little foam sticker pegs to put on your walls and hang each disc up individually. And hope the FBI never shows up.

Or just stick with the books; tried and true, and I'm not sure I buy your "disc wear" argument.
posted by trevyn at 2:12 PM on June 7, 2005

A while back I decided that my CDs were taking up too much room in their plastic towers, and one wall shelf large enough for all of them was too expensive and too large (for my space at the time). I took the CDs and their front and rear cover art out of the jewel cases and filed them in Sterilite plastic tubs from Wal-Mart (also available at Target etc.). I'm not at home right now, I believe they are the 7 quart variety; they have a split lid such that the two sides overlap each other, interlocking to close securely. They are stackable, though somewhat unstable in taller configurations. At a wild guess, I'd say about 100 discs to each. I alphabetized them and am using a cheap 'n' crappy index card indexing system - just to separate at each letter. Less slidey/scratchy action than sleeves in books, dust free, small to store, easy to access. I saved all the jewel cases for a while to make sure I wouldn't hate it - they're all gone now, donated to someone less organized than I. Works great!
posted by attercoppe at 12:03 PM on June 8, 2005

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