Best Jewel Case for Storing CDs and DVDs

by Geri
(New York, USA)

A picture of a slim spring-loaded jewel case for storing CDs, DVDs, or Blu-rays. The case is made of polypropylene.

A picture of a slim spring-loaded jewel case for storing CDs, DVDs, or Blu-rays. The case is made of polypropylene.

I have many digital photos that I am storing copies of on several CDs and DVDs. What is the best jewel case for storing these optical discs so that they do not get damaged, either chemically or physically? Are the thin jewel cases acceptable? If yes, then that would save a lot of storage space. Is there a significance in terms of the colour of the jewel cases and whether they will negatively affect the discs stored within them?

The recommended jewel case is the standard size jewel case which is 10mm is size. The standard case suspends the disc at the hub and provides enough of a gap between the case surfaces and disc surfaces so that no rubbing and scratching of the CD or DVD occurs.

Although thin jewel cases (which are half the thickness of regular or standard jewel cases) save space, the disc is much closer to the case and often the disc does come in contact with the case surfaces and this promotes scratching and physical damage. Avoid these thin jewel cases, which are available in a variety of different forms, even spring-loaded gadget type ones, if handling discs frequently. If storing the CDs or DVDs on a shelf and they remain idle for most of the time, then these thinner cases are useful space savers and likely will not damage the discs.

Standard jewel cases have different colored trays. No one knows if different colors mean different stability and really there is no evidence that different trays contribute to disc problems, but it is a possibility. There are some thoughts that the clear ones are best and so stick with those if possible, but there is no solid argument to avoid the other colours.

To be extra sure the case does not affect the disc chemically, use polypropylene one-piece jewel cases. Polypropylene containers are good to use for long term storage since they do not contribute to the chemical degradation of materials stored in them. Polypropylene also has the added benefit of being much more durable and will not shatter like polystyrene which is the material used in standard jewel cases. Polypropylene cases are also beneficial when the cases are being frequently handled.

More information can be found at this cd storage link.

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