What is the difference between DVD+R and DVD-R?

/ 8 years ago

This is quite a common question asked around the internet, so here is the answer.

First things first, no single company “owns” DVD.

Secondly, there are two ways of answering this question.

The Commercial Answer

The two competing technologies use different formats, hence the name -R and +R. Sounds simple enough?

DVD-R/RW (based on CD-RW technology) was developed by Pioneer.

DVD+R/RW (also based on CD-RW technology) is supported by Sony, Philips, HP, Dell, Ricoh, Yamaha, among others. The format/technology has recently been endorsed by Microsoft.

Technical Answer

DVD-R only allows one layer where DVD+R is a dvd disc that allows multiple layers for one disc.

Users will argue blue in the face by defending one of the two formats but niether of them will become the standard because they are both here to stay.

Multi layer DVD+R can allow extra capacity per disc than DVD-R. Of course there is a higher premium on the disc, so be prepared to pay a little bit more.

The Pros and Cons



Better compatibility for DVD playback with home DVD players.


Older technology meaning that faster media is brought out, but the burning technology is slower. You will normally see DVD burners that support faster speed DVD+R and slower speed DVD-R.



Faster speeds
Double Layer discs (8.5 GB)


Less compatibility with home DVD players.
More expensive in some cases.