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Archive for the 'DVD Duplication' Category

DVD Copy Service

A good DVD copy service in Austin is going to ask you for a few things – use this checklist so that you will be a smart and informed consumer.

Do you own 100% of the content on the disc?

OK, this should be the first question any reputable DVD copy service in Austin asks you. Its because to duplicate content that you don’t have permission to use violates US copyright laws – even if you don’t sell it, even if you give it away, even if you are a non-profit. Don’t do it. And we certainly can’t do it. If you use music in the background of a slide show – that music as a sound recording belongs to someone. And purchasing a music CD doesn’t give you permission to use it in a slideshow. Just remember, just because you’re not asked this question, doesn’t mean you’re off the hook.

How many copies?

First, as a smart consumer, you know how many copies you will need. The easiest way to determine this is to state how many copies from a single master are needed.

Its easy to confuse the issue and say that you need 20 copies. But imagine, if you have 5 masters that’s 4 copies from each single master. Why is that important to tell a copy service?

There is time involved in set up and each master typically will have an amount of time required to make a disc image that will be used in duplication and then the time to verify that disc image against the master. So you will see that doing that once for a single master will take far less time than doing the same thing 5 times. Thus the price for doing 20 of the same master is different from the price of doing 4 copies each of 5 masters. See what I mean about it being easy to get confused?

What kind of DVD?

DVDs come in different sizes even though they all look alike – usually people need DVD5 duplication. But if you need a DVD9 which is a different format, you need to tell your representative. Not only are the blanks different – there is even less capacity so it can affect not only your price but your turntime.

Disc Face Artwork – on  Labels No Way!

If you’re producing your DVDs you might be forgiven to think that a professional dvd copy service in Austin might also have to use labels. No way! We want you to look even better than “a pocket on a shirt.” (that’s Linda’s favorite saying, she’s so cute) We provide a full color thermal directly to the disc. That’s why we mostly use white DVD blanks that print all the way to the center hole – they look amazing. They will scream “professional” and all that cool juice will be flowing to you! Your clients will think YOU are as professional as that disc looks!

But you will need to provide the disc artwork – and its always better to provide it at the very least as a 5 x 5 square – and remember there is a hole in the middle so don’t put your company name or title or anything you want to print on your disc in the center. You can have the background print through the center when you provide it to us – we’ll place it in our template and the hole will automatically be added. This is always much easier than you figuring out where that hole goes and making sure its completely and utterly round so that it fits.

DVD Packaging

You may be imagining in your mindseye what you expect this to be when its all done. But if you don’t ask for specific packaging, its not going to get packaged as you envisioned it.

You can go from bulk discs (no packaging) on up to a custom cardboard wallet when it comes to DVDs. Depending on what you’re using the DVDs for you have many options, some of them very inexpensive. So if you’re not asked, mention what you’re using them for and see if your representative has some ideas for you. They don’t all have to look like DVDs from Blockbuster – but they easily could.


Depending on your timeline – if you have less time, you have less custom options you have for packaging. DVD Packaging options that don’t require custom printing would be things like paper sleeve with windows, c-shells or clamshells, slimline jewel cases without a front insert etc.

Anything that is printed with your information (other than the disc face) is going to need the minimum of a couple of days. And if you opt for a custom cardboard wallet or digipak, you’re going to need to allow even more time for your artwork to be printed, die cut, scored, and hand folded down to be ready for assembly and wrap.

A Dvd service in austin with cd duplication is going to have the best options for you. Also, like the eye surgeon, if you need it you want to go with the one that does it all the time and not out of the back of his car. Same holds with a DVD copy service, you want one where you’ll get help and guidance as well as quality with a fair price.


If you’ve been struggling with doing these on your own and spending all day to get 8 completed only to ruin them when you paste on paper labels, when you go to outsource to a dvd copy service you should also expect to pay more than what you paid for supplies. Its simple business economics. You’re not just buying 100 DVDs, you’re buying the previous experience so your DVDs are done correctly as well as the expectation that that while you need what you need now, that same copy service will be there for you in a month, in a year, in 2 years.

Give us a call at 512-388-1998 when it comes to needing a reliable and professional DVD copy service in Austin.

posted by Carolyn Holzman in DVD Duplication and have No Comments

Duplication vs Replication

Not sure whether you need to look at duplication or manufacturing using a glass master? This information is designed to help you navigate which you should consider.

image to illustrate duplication vs replicationUsually we are asked – which is better but more often ultimately its a decision based on economics. Let me explain.

By the way, this entire topic is typically moot for CDMaker clients because we offer replicated CDs options at a low quantity of 300. At that point it is actually cheaper to press than to duplicate. So its really more a question for those that need less than 300 or those that are doing DVD formats where the minimum quantities to press are higher, for example DVD-9 manufacturing as of 2014 still requires a minimum quantity of 1000 pieces.

The number of discs from the same master is the primary factor in determining which one is best suited for you.


Duplication or Replication is all about the economics

What you need to understand that the work to replicate a CD or DVD requires hours of glass mastering – preparing an exact replica of the physical master to then have stampers made so that thousands of pounds of polycarbonate pellets can be melted down and injected into the molds that will form your disc and then have some nickel oxide spun on the disc and then have the finished discs silk-screened.

All that time and labor to create the glass master and stamps is spread throughout the number of discs that are manufactured now. Previously in the early 1990’s you would have paid a separate glass mastering fee.

If you only have 100 discs made by glass master, even by spreading it out on a per disc charge would make those 100 discs almost as expensive as pressing 1000 discs. The labor and materials for the glass mastering and the step up on the machine and testing is a lot easier to spread out over 1000 or more discs without causing coronary issues!

Duplication, where a pre existing round blank disc is placed in a duplication machine for copying, is much better suited for runs up to 200 – 250. You do pay more PER disc for short runs compared to replication but the OVERALL price is less.

Duplication vs Replication is an important choice when doing less than 300 pieces

How do you choose CD Duplication vs Replication?

Usually this is a question asked by our audio clients who are concerned about the sound quality of duplication. We do have clients who insist on only doing replication and will press the minimum amount because they want the stability that a pressed disc by nature holds.

You see,what makes a CDR or DVDR able to be copied is also what makes them easy to be damaged when compared to a replicated disc. Not that a replicated disc is indestructible by any means, this is all relative.

How about sound quality for music discs?

First and foremost, your master and how it was created plays an enormous role in this process. Manufacturing is going to be an exact replicate of your master. So there are fewer opportunities in manufacturing to “mess” with your sound. This is best understood if you realise that manfacturing is a physical process and everything up to your master has been an AUDIO process. For for the duplication process there are many ways the sound can be depricated.

For instance, the main way this happens is depending on how fast your music CDs are duplicated. CDMaker duplication for audio CDs is set to 16X – no faster. This is typically lower speed than most duplication facilities who are more interested in scheduling vast numbers of discs rather than a lesser number of better sounding discs.

Another factor is are the computer chips in the players – car stereos vs home systems. Some CD players have a hard time with different media – the brand of the blank disc – and it can be a high end automobile that spits out your duplicated disc. While duplication and replication has standards it must meet in order to be an audio CD, CD players are not held to the same standard – they can use any set of standards for playback which may not be a full range of Red Book Audio.

UPDATE: In response to the comment below, DVD-R and DVD+R blank media are two entirely different animals. We do not accept any rewritable media as masters because of the possibility that they were used before and could have digital “events” that are not apparent in playback but potentially could get noticed in the glass mastering phase which makes an exact copy.

Additionally –
A DVD-R is a non-rewriteable format and it is compatible with about 93% of all DVD Players and most DVD-ROMs.
A DVD-RW is a rewriteable format and it is compatible with about 80% of all DVD Players and most DVD-ROMs.

They both come as single-sided, single layer as well as double sided,single layer and double-sided, double layer formats.

But which is best?

Well, you have to realize that while you want to always have an archive of your best copy, producing a commercial CD or DVD either by duplication or replication shouldn’t also be confused as archival quality. You may only want 100 copies and the question to you is – if you don’t want duplication – are you willing to pay the higher price per unit for manufacturing? Because what we’ve found is that once a client can obtain pressed copies of their music at a price that is lower than duplicated discs, economics turns the tide in the decision-making process.

Best bet is to talk with your representative and tell them what you need, what your concerns and priorities are so they can provide you with a complete range of options so you can make an informed choice whether or not you want to duplicate or replicate your project.

posted by Carolyn Holzman in CD Duplication,CD Replication,DVD Duplication,DVD Replication,Red Book Audio and have Comment (1)

Seven Questions to Ask Your Graphic Designer

We get a lot of questions about graphic design for CDs and we came up with a few ideas of questions to discuss with your designer as you evaluate who will be able to do the best job for you.

Whenever you’re interviewing graphic designers for CD projects – its a good idea to clarify a few things before you begin. Sometimes you could find out somethings further down the road that would have helped you save time & money earlier on had you known.

This list is by no means comprehensive – you may have others – these will help get you started.

1. What programs will you be using?

Expect to hear answers like – Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign. Answers like Word or Corel Draw – are indicative of a difference type of publishing than what you need.

2. Do you typically design for websites or printing presses?

If they don’t understand why they would be asked this – typically they design for websites. What makes artwork work technically the best for web is exactly the opposite of printing presses. What you need is high resolution 300 dpi, CMYK artwork, unflattened and in layers. These types of files will not only allow you to print better quality they allow for future changes without you having to go back to the initial designer for simple edits or additions.

3. Will you be able and willing to provide to my CD printing company high resolution, unflattened, native layered files?

This is important to ask. Graphic designers hold differing view on who actually owns the native files. Yes, sometimes they believe you own what comes off the press but that they own the digital files. Its not rude to ask and its not rude if they tell you that they believe they own them. Ask them what it would take to obtain ownership and usually that’s a dollar amount – just consider that when you determine your budget. And get it in writing if you hire them BEFORE you give them a deposit check.

FYI – Any graphic work that CDMaker does for you is considered to be your property so you have full and unfettered access to native files – just ask for a backup when you order so its just the time and materials cost to make one for you.

4. Will you be using templates to set up the artwork?

This is a huge one – if they just make one up or recycle one from another manufacturer – you could be looking at additional time. Tell them that you expect them to use the proper template(s) and if they don’t do so they are responsible to adjust artwork to fit the proper template. Again, its just that you are clarifying your expectations. If you don’t mind being charged by your manufacturer or printing house  for the extra costs to adjust artwork files – then you don’t have to have this conversation.

5. Will I be given a complete set of backup files – all support images, all fonts, all native files at the end of the project?

This is again a clarifying question. If they say they will keep it on their harddrive- that’s great but ask for a physical backup of the native unflattened files and all the source images and fonts on a disc so that if anything happens to them, their computer, their harddrive, their work situation, their living situation, you have a back up.

6. If a logo design is part of the project – will the design be formated so that I can use it in black and white or color, or on any colot background or will it require a white box around it?

This is an important question – sometimes its easy to design a logo that work for the color of the immediate layout but when you need to put it on your facebook page or tshirt or business card, it doesn’t work as easily. Again, this is a question that clarifies. If you want it to have maximum flexibility for you – ask this question in the beginning of your relationship.

7. Are there any design concerns if you want to use the artwork or a portion of the artwork for t-shirts or display banners or other promotional materials which I may need the artwork larger?

Sometimes you may have a need for artwork to be larger than what it was originally designed to be. Sometimes because of how the artwork was designed it will look really bad if you just enlarge it. That’s why photoshop can be a limiting choice. Its a vector/non-vector issue. What’s that? Vector is better to go from small to large since it sets up an outline for text or images and then fills in instead of stretching dots (non-vector) from original size to larger which will pull dots further apart which kills the resolution of your artwork. Resolution affects how clear it is to the eye after its been printed.

Again, these are just some questions that will lead to a more complete discussion with your graphic designer. In turn this will helpyou be able to better assess how much it will cost you not just in terms of immediate outlay. This obviously is written more from the angle of having your CDs or DVD published but it lends itself to every situation where you might need the help of a graphic designer.

What questions have helped you? Please feel free to share below or let me know if these questions have helped you talk with your designer.

posted by in Artwork Layout,CD Duplication,CD Replication,DVD Duplication,DVD Replication,Templates and Specifications and have No Comments

CD DVD Production Service Moving in Austin

Well, its official – the truck is coming this week and we’re heavy into boxing things up and getting ready.

During the week of Dec 27th CDMaker will be focused on moving from the current location to a new office that is being painted as I write this.

Starting Jan 3, 2011 – you can find CDMaker at:

13581 Pond Springs Road, Suite 301
Austin, Texas 78729

Our phone numbers and website will remain the same – only the mailing address will be different.

Our mail is going to be forwarded for a couple of weeks as we communicate our new mailing address to our clients and everyone with whom we do business.
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posted by Carolyn Holzman in CD Duplication,CD Replication,DVD Duplication,DVD Replication and have Comments Off on CD DVD Production Service Moving in Austin

Short Run CD Duplication

Short run CD duplication is used when the amount of discs needed for a project are so few that manufacturing would be excessive. This is true for CD duplication as well as DVD duplication.

What is Short Run CD Duplication

Typically the cut off is around 500 – 500 and up are manufactured usually. Now, when someone needs 499 – well, I would not like to be in their shoes – just kidding.

Its an arbitrary cut off. There are many factors that contribute.

How Small is a Short Run CD Duplication

Sometimes the question is how few a duplication service will do as a short run. Often times you will find a minimum quantity is required.


Well, there’s a certain amount of labor – imagine there’s the time spent checking the artwork and setting it up to print on the disc. There’s the time printing and then moving over to duplicate. And all that time is the same whether its 1 disc or 100 discs. The quality demands of a professional duplication service will require that the same care be extended to a single disc duplication as well as a 100 or 200 or more.

Here at CDMaker we have a no minimum on short run duplication at least for the time being. We figure that if we can help you this time, either you’ll be back or tell all your friends what a great place CDMaker is to have projects duplicated.

Does a short run CD duplication project require different things?

Surprisingly no. A short run CD duplication project needs the same things as a large replication project in terms of what you the publisher provide. A physical master is optimal and press ready artwork files for the insert or paper printing as well as the graphic files for the disc face. Everything still needs to be the same – the song order should be in the order desired, the artwork files should require nothing more than say adding the barcode and the disc face artwork places in a template.

How long does it take to complete on a short run CD duplication project?

Since each disc is printed and duplicated individually it depends on the amount of capacity. But typically professional duplication services will be able to turn bulk discs in a few days. Heck, in some circumstances we’re done them in less than 24 hours – but that’s another story!!

If you need paper printing for a jewel case, or cardboard printing you’ll need to allow a few days for your artwork to go through the printing and bindery process. The printing process for a short run duplication project will probably mean your job and one other is printed at the same time and then taken over to bindery where the large pages are cut or trimmed down to the desired size where its a 2-panel or a 4-panel insert. The traycards for short run CD projects are perforated since these are hand assembled.

Then once all the pieces are completed – someone gets to put these together by hand typically and then shrinkwrapped.

The entire process could take 5 -7 business days for a complete package – duplication and paper printing, bindery and assembly.

Why would a short run cd duplication ever be more desired than replication?

Quantity is a big factor in the favor of short run cd projects and depending on the choice of packaging, the time factor could be reduced. For instance, a 2-panel in a slimline jewel case where there is no traycard can be produced much more quickly because of the reduction in printing time (there is no traycard) and reduction in bindery and assembly (straight cuts only and no traycard to insert.)

If you have more questions or would like to speak with a real live person during our business hours. . .

You can reach us via the contact page – the Chat Box at the bottom right of this page – by phone at the big number at the top or by mail

CDMaker – CD Duplication & DVD Duplication
15381 Pond Springs Road, Suite 301
Austin, Texas 78729
posted by Carolyn Holzman in CD Duplication,DVD Duplication and have No Comments

CD DVD Duplication Replication – Glossary

CD DVD Duplication Replication

It can be a jungle out there if you’re looking for information on cd dvd duplication replication or whatever you need in relation to your disc project. Which one is best for you or even what are the differences can be an education in itself before you even choose which duplication service to trust.

cd dvd duplication replication

CD DVD Duplication Replication glossary


The content is recorded onto CD-R & DVD-R discs from your supplied disc (CD-R or DVD-R). Duplication is used for all quantities, large and small, and offers the fastest turnaround. This is CD DVD duplication, replication is different.


Discs are pressed from a glass master that is made from your supplied disc (CD-R or DVD-R). Replication requires extensive technical setup and is only used for quantities of 500 & more.

Please contact us for assistance if you are not sure which process, duplication or replication, is best for you. We’ll be glad to help! Read more about how CDs work.

Graphic Art & Proofing Terms


The extra amount of that your art image extends beyond the trim edge of your artwork.


Cyan, Magenta, Yellow & Black

the four primary colors used to generate full color press, or high quality, printing.


Once your artwork is ready for duplication or replication, a sample view, called a proof, is emailed to you for approval. The process of receiving and approving proofs is called proofing. Once your proofs are emailed to you your project is on hold until your approval is received.


Red, Green & Blue, the primary colors used to create images for viewing on a PC monitor.


Image density measured in dots per inch.

Packaging Terms


Case standard DVD case.

Cardboard Sleeve

folding sleeve with a pocket to hold the disc.


opens like a 4 panel insert.


lightweight plastic case, sometimes called a c-shell case from it’s appearance.


similar to a cardboard sleeve but it includes a tray to hold the disc rather than a pocket.

Insert the removable sleeve stored in the jewel case lid.
2 panel insert 1 page with a front and back, no folds.
4 panel insert 2 pages on each side, 1 fold.
6 panel insert 3 pages on each side, 2 folds.
8 panel insert 4 pages on each side, 3 folds.
10 panel insert 5 pages on each side, 4 folds.
Booklet insert opens as a book and contains a minimum of 8 panels.
Jewel case a typical plastic Compact Disc case.
Panel A section of an insert folder between two folds or between a fold and a trimmed edge. One panel is considered to be two pages, a front and back for each.
Spindle cylinder shaped case for holding large quantities of CDs.
Sleeve paper envelope fitted for CDs with a clear window on the front.
Slimline half the thickness of a standard jewel case. Slimlines can fit an insert but not a tray card.
Tray card the permanent page on the underside of the jewel case with a spine for labeling the CD.

Printing Terms

The first number indicates the color of the front. The second number indicates the color of the back.

0 = no print, 1 = one color & 4 = full color.

For example, a 4/4 (4 over 4) four panel insert package would include a four panel insert with full color printing on the front & back.

4/0 Indicates full color print on the front and no print on the back.
4/1 Indicates full color print on the front and one color print on the back.
4/4 Indicates full color print on the front and full color print on the back.

Over& Under Run The number of units an order is over or under

Offset The superior on-disc print process resulting in improved images, skin tones, full color graphics and text. Replication on-disc print is printed on a shiny silver disc face. So if you what any part of the disc to be white – you need to include it in your artwork and at the very least put in on your order form and speak to your rep about it.

Screen The on disc print process using mesh screens and stencils.

CD DVD Duplication Replication

As you can see CD DVD duplication, replication, can be as simple as what you do at home OR as sophisticated as what a major record label or publisher  does to release a project.

CD DVD Duplication Replication

IF you have any specific questions about how best your project would be best to go -duplication or replication, please call 800-678-1998.

posted by Carolyn Holzman in CD Duplication,CD DVD Duplicating,CD DVD Replication Service,CD Replication,DVD Duplication,DVD Replication and have Comments Off on CD DVD Duplication Replication – Glossary