Difference Between CD-ROM and DVD

The world today is based on data and information, in ancient times all these data and information were stored in the form of manuscripts or written information. But it was not enough as sometimes these papers use to get lost or worn out.  Over time humans came up with discoveries and solutions to store the information. One of the discoveries as a storage device is CD-ROM and DVD.


The main difference between CD-ROM  and DVD is that CD-ROM  has less storage capacity than DVD. CD-ROM is a storage device in which data cannot be edited it is a Read-Only Storage Device, in contrast, DVDs are storage devices where data can be read and written. CD-ROM  storage capacity is about 700 MB on the other hand, DVD storage capacity is up to 17GB.


CD-ROM stands for Compact Disc Read-Only Memory, it was first introduced in 1982, as it was a digital device it was widely accepted by the computer industry. In the early 1990’s it became the most convenient and safe method of storing information. With its high storage capacity of 700MB, it replaced the floppy disk which has a storage capacity of 1.44MB.

DVD stands for Digital Video Disc or Digital Versatile Disc, it was released in 1996, DVD was widely accepted as a storage device because of its versatility. It allows a user to Read as well as Write the data or information, we can store information on both sides of the DVD and it has a storage capacity of about 17GB.

Comparison Table Between CD-ROM  and DVD

Parameters of ComparisonCD-ROMDVD
DefinitionCD-ROM is a read-only optical storage device.DVD includes high-resolution audiovisual content and can store large amounts of data.
Storage CapacityStores up to 700MB of dataStores up to 17GB of data
IntroducedIn the year 1982In the year 1996
Storage OptionsIt can only read dataIt can read as well as write data.
Replacement forFloppy disc CD-ROM

What is CD-ROM?

CD-ROM became very popular in the 1990s as it was the prime medium for storage and distribution of information and data which includes software, media, games, and many more. A CD-ROM is a compact disc that can be read by a computer equipped with an optical drive. The read-only memory (ROM) portion of the term denotes that the data on the disc is read-only and cannot be modified or erased. CD-ROMs are an excellent media format for retail software because of this feature and their large storage capacity.

James Rusell is the founder of CD-ROM as a means of storing information that could be retrieved later, he proposed using photosensitive film for digital preservation. The size of a CD- ROM is about 120 mm in diameter, it is a portable device and 1 CD can store up to 3 lakh text pages and can run audio for up to 80 minutes. There are three types of CD-ROM: standard manufactured CDs (CD-DA), recordable CDs (CD-R), and rewriteable CDs (CD-RW).

The primary benefits of CD-ROM technology are high-data storage; data security and integrity; optical medium stability, particularly as compared to a magnetic storage device; the capacity to store software, audio, and video data as a result of storage capacity and laser technology; and convenience of mass manufacturing. All these features contribute to the popularity of CD-ROM in the mid-’90s.

What is DVD?

DVD offers a high storage capacity as compared to CD-ROM although the size and the dimension of both the storage devices are the same. The data stored in the DVD is interpreted with the help of a laser beam. The high storage capacity of the DVD is due to the short wavelengths of the red light as compared to other optical devices.

Two companies namely Sony Corporation and Pacific digital collaborated to create the first DVD on 1/11/1996 which was first available in Japan. The market offers many kinds of DVDs, but three of them stand out the most: DVD- ROM (it only reads the information), DVD + RW (it is a rewritable DVD, where data can be stored and the data can also be erased), DVD-R( it is blank DVD used to write information).

DVD has excellent sound and picture quality, it is much faster than CD-ROM in terms of transferring data, and the high storage capacity of DVD is due to its ability to write the information on both sides of the CD.  DVD is widely available as its price is low and the fact that 1 DVD can store data which is equivalent to 6 CD-ROM, all these features contribute to the popularity of DVD.

Main Differences Between CD-ROM  and DVD

1. CD-ROM has less storage capacity as compared to DVD.

2. In CD-ROM data can be stored only on one side, whereas information can be stored on both  sides of the  


3. CD-ROM is a read-only device where information cannot be edited or deleted, on the other 

    hand, we can read and write information on a DVD.

4. CD-ROM is slower as compared to DVD in terms of transferring information from one device

     to the other.

5. CD-ROM is the replacement of a floppy disc whereas DVD is the replacement of CD-ROM.


There is a new world where new technologies are emerging and discoveries are being made. The most prominent and promising changes are taking place in the digital world, be it the invention of the super-computer that was huge in size or the smallest microchip that can store tons of data. CD-ROM and DVD are some of the finest discoveries of the digital world that have made the storage of data and information much easier.

It has contributed to the growth and development of many software industries, media, and gaming hubs. These storage devices made the life of people easy by giving them access to all the data and information that is valuable for them. It is a device that made the distribution of information and data possible over a large scale. Currently, new storage devices are coming up in the market which has almost replaced CD-ROM and DVD, but it should not be forgotten that these were the devices that kept the foundation of the new storage devices.


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