Lightscribe Labeling and Other CD and DVD Questions

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by cmashieldscapting, May 23, 2006.

  1. With my LaCie DVD +-RW 16x4x16x Double Layer Firewire Drive connected
    to my Mac G4 and eventual goal of making a bunch of CDs and DVDs, my
    questions now are:

    1. Can I have someone else burn a CD on a Lightscribe-enabled disk,
    then send me the disk to label, or must it ABSOLUTELY ALWAYS be done at
    the same time on the same machine?

    The thing is, I plan to burn the DVDs myself, but as for the CDs, I'm
    having one friend do the photo CDs and another the music CDs, as both
    are professionals with the proper expertise and equipment for these
    things, and I'd much rather pay them to do these and waste my own time
    and effort hitting my head against the wall tearing my hair out
    attempting to make DVDs only rather than throwing in negative and photo
    scanning and music. So can I go ahead and either buy blank CDs and
    supply them to my friends, or instruct them what sort to buy, then burn
    professional-looking labels using Lightscribe after the fact when the
    CDs are finished? Same question with if I burn a DVD in my player's
    burner, can I then turn around and make a label using my Lightscribe

    2. As for the DVDs. I was instructed by those in the know online to
    buy Taiyo-Yuden as the most reliable brand, in DVD-R, and ONLY DVD-R
    format. Trouble is, I didn't know at the time I asked about DVDs that
    for Lightscribe labeling to work required a disk enabled for such
    labeling. (I haven't actually MADE a label yet--but I have learned
    THAT much!) So anyhow, I went online and can't find that Taiyo-Yuden
    manufactures ANY Lightscribe-enabled disks. Please inform me if this
    is incorrect. I went to several stores, and could find
    Lightscribe-enabled DVDs ONLY in +R format. Finally, at Best Buy,
    which I figured had the best selection and price and most knowledgeable
    staff, I asked why this was. The only brand they had featuring
    Lightscribe had CDs in +R and -R but DVDs only in +R. The Best Buy
    guys told me +R was the "new standard," and -R wouldn't be made any
    more by that company if by anyone. My friend doing the music says
    they're full of it. Are the Best Buy boys full of it, or not? If they
    are, what awful thing will happen as a result of having bought +R
    rather than -R? (I found only one DVD -R Lightscribe-enabled disk
    anywhere, made by HP.)

    If what I bought at Best Buy works, I've more than half a mind to keep
    getting disks that way, as those sold in bulk online don't include
    jewel cases. So by the time I bought a stack of disks at one place, an
    equal number of jewel cases at the same or a different place, then add
    shipping for all of the above, I'm probably spending as much or more
    than to buy them together all at once at Best Buy. IF they work, and
    IF something awful does not happen due to me having bought DVD +R
    rather than DVD -R. If something awful does happen, watch this space!

    I appreciate your knowledge, consideration, and effort, thanks.

    cmashieldscapting, May 23, 2006
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  2. P. S. And must Lightscribe labeling be done IMMEDIATELY after a burn?
    What if you want to do an elaborate label that takes time, such as
    selecting, lining up, and placing a picture, or fitting on a bunch of
    titles? Is there any way to set it up before or afterwards or must it
    ALL be done RIGHT THEN as the burn is finished?

    cmashieldscapting, May 23, 2006
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  3. wrote:

    I can't answer your questions about LightScribe, so I will move on to this
    The cult of Taiyo-Yuden seems to me to be run by people with marginal
    burners or perhaps who scoured the bottom of the blank disk food chain
    before seeing the light (so to speak). I've used many different brands,
    avoiding unbranded and store brand discs, and made discs for many people,
    and I've had only 3 complaints: one about TDK, one about Memorex (both from
    the same person, so it may be a flaky player at fault) and another about
    Memorex (that may have been a +R/-R compatibility issue). Currently I'm
    using Fuji and Maxell with no complaints.

    But what of that flaky player issue? Were the discs off spec or was the
    player? I won't suggest that burned DVDs are perfect, no matter what the
    brand, but players age quickly and the first symptom is finickyness about
    discs. My sample is too small to scientifically call a fault on either disc
    or player. But you'll note that I have switched brands and I'm still taking

    I've used many different players and never had a successful burn that didn't
    play properly.
    There is no such thing as CD+R.
    From the POV of the person receiving the burned DVD, the issue is
    compatibility. Claims are made that +R is compatible with more players, and
    similar claims are made for -R. The fact is, older players do not all play
    BOTH +R and -R, and which one they will play is a crap shoot. Choose either
    +R or -R as your standard, and have a smaller supply of the other format,
    then be prepared to handle any complaints of "unplayable" discs with
    replacements of the other format.
    Kimba W. Lion, May 23, 2006
  4. No, you can wait, and wait and wait....

    Ralph E Lindberg, May 23, 2006
  5. .....
    So don't buy any. I have had one (1) failure in Verbatium (out of 30+

    Ralph E Lindberg, May 23, 2006
  6. cmashieldscapting

    Tonester Guest

    1) Have you actually seen a Lightscribe label? I suspect after you see how
    crappy it actually is you'll think twice about spending 20+ minutes PER DISC
    to do a label.

    2) Yes, Best Buy is full of crap. That's probably the worst place to go to
    ask for advice.

    3) Taiyo Yuden is good, but no better than Ritek, which I actually prefer.

    My suggestion? Invest $100 in an Epson CD/DVD printer and printable Ritek
    media. Their printable surface looks far better than TY's.
    Tonester, May 23, 2006
  7. Kimba W. Lion wrote:

    Hey, Kimba, I like your name!
    Oh, dear, I bought Memorex DVD +R so it seems I may have the wrong
    thing on TWO counts!
    It that's true it answers one of my next questions. Perhaps by then I
    was so tired I looked at RW disks and thought they were +R or
    I rather suspected that but was too tired to argue by then.

    As far as format and compatibility issues, I'll go more into that in my
    next post. Thanks for the answers so far.

    cmashieldscapting, May 23, 2006
  8. Tonester wrote
    Yes, the guy at Best Buy showed me one. I was disappointed it wasn't
    in color, but what do you expect without ink? I've also seen labels
    handscrawled with Sharpies, even by people with good writing, which I
    don't have. I'll stick with Lightscribe till something better comes
    As I suspected, but it was that or Fred Meyer, by which I mean...I'd
    just visited a major city known for its recording industry and was
    EXTREMELY disappointed! I'd go into a store supposedly DEVOTED to
    music media and find them selling ONE brand (TDK) and not at all at
    competitive prices. What is THAT? My friend was a little disgusted I
    refused to buy anything under such conditions, but I thought it was out
    of line for the specialists to have such a setup--I mean, I'd do
    better just ordering online, not even walking into a store, and having
    choices of different media at good prices than going into a store which
    sells ONE thing for more than I'd pay for the SAME crappy thing at a
    Wal-Mart, which they also don't have. The only good going to a store
    did was that I was delighted to learn that there even was such a thing
    as a Lightscribe-enabled disk and to find one--and that was at Fred
    Meyer, but all they had was DVD +R--as did Best Buy.
    Yeah, I've seen "inkjet printer" format disks I KNOW aren't going in my
    printer (which barely prints PAPER) and I didn't want to mess with
    "peel and stick" labels for each disk, so it looks like, go with
    Lightscribe or buy another printer JUST for printing labels!

    cmashieldscapting, May 23, 2006
  9. Okay, the cheap so-and-sos who put Lightscribe on the LaCie burner put
    the whole user's manual on disk and then expect the user to print it
    out. I guess the reason I went online asking questions is I figured
    anyone who had actually used the program might be more helpful than
    such a manual! Anyhow, section 4., "Using LaCie LightScribe Labeler,"
    on page 21 of the User's Manual says

    "4.3. Printing A Label
    Once you've gotten your label properly laid out with your images,
    text and/or objects, you're ready to print the label. To launch the
    Print Options/Drive Info window, simply click on the Print button. From
    this window, you'll be able to modify your print options, view a
    preview of the item about to be printed and view information about the
    drive and media."

    That sounds hopeful. It then proceeds to "Print Setup," "Contrast
    Level," "Estimate Label Printing Time," and "Number Of Copies," which
    sounds REAL hopeful, as some will be multiple copies and I sure don't
    want to set them up again each time! I suppose there must also be some
    way of storing label designs already created for later use. It then
    proceeds to "Drive," "Preview," and then the next section about
    actually printing.

    As for the media questions, I suppose I can use the DVD +R disks to (at
    worst) experiment and (at best) make my own master copies, and then
    burn copies of those to DVD -R disks for others? Correct? I can
    simply copy the master disk without having to reburn for each copy,
    with no generational loss as there would be with a copy of a copy of a
    VHS tape? And there is no compatibility issue of copying from +R to
    -R, (or is there)? Then I can label it as above, regardless of how
    many copies I choose to do at a time, as it sounds as if it does not
    all have to be done at once?

    I am ESPECIALLY grateful for the CD information as the CDs are being
    done by other people who I want to inform as to what disks to use. Are
    there +R or -R rules about still pictures and music? Because once
    made, I'd like to copy those disks for a few people, too. I bought -R
    as everyone so recommended -R on the DVDs, hope I didn't pull an
    Epanimondas there! But then, since someone here says there is no such
    thing as CD +R maybe I did the right thing by default!

    I really appreciate clarification because going into this I was told
    how it was all so "simple, easy" I assumed I knew how to do it, and
    would know from following directions, and it's turned out to be nothing
    but pitfall after pitfall to the point where I go in asking questions
    although I have a user's manual! Thanks for all the help!

    cmashieldscapting, May 23, 2006
  10. Try searching a printed manual for a word or phrase and you will see
    one advantage of a PDF manual (which you can copy to your hard disk, of
    course, for fast access). Also, try to find *anything* today that comes
    with a printed manual. Some, but not many, products do (Adobe Photoshop
    + Premiere Elements comes to mind; there are others).
    There is no real advantage to DVD+R vs DVD-R if both work on your
    player. If only one works on your player, don't use the other. As
    already stated in this thread, some of your recipients will be able to
    play both, some only -, some only +, and some neither.
    The smart thing to do is to burn your show(s) as image files on the
    hard drive and burn all your DVDs and CDs from the images. With the
    right software, e.g. Nero, you also can play an image file like a real
    disc to make sure you like the result. To learn more about that, you
    will have to do some of your own work, because I won't. Others might,
    though :)
    *Repeat* There are no CD+R or CD+RW discs. For DVDs, see the remarks
    above. DVD+ and - are for all practical purposes equivalent where they
    *Everyone* here (except you) says there is no such thing as CD+.
    Gene E. Bloch, May 23, 2006
  11. I personally wouldn't be that concerned about it, but if you are, you can
    use them for test burns and other in-house uses. I can't say for certain
    that the two complaints I had were due to bad discs.
    Kimba W. Lion, May 23, 2006
  12. As someone else said, you'd be better off creating your DVD as a folder on
    your computers hard drive, and then copying it from there to blank DVDs. It
    would probably even go faster that way, since most burning programs will
    tell you to make an image on your hard drive during the disc-to-disc copy
    No, format differences are handled without your input.
    An audio CD is an audio CD. Burn away.

    As for pictures, you'll want to consider how they will be viewed. JPG (or
    JPEG) is just about a universal format for the image files; many set-top DVD
    players can show them. Myself, I really, really hate when I have to install
    ANOTHER piece of software from a disc just to view some pictures. If you are
    aiming for PC use, consider setting up HTML files, like a web site on disc.
    Wait til you get to the actual DVD authoring. There's a learning curve
    there, too. For example, each menu I produce is far better than the previous
    Kimba W. Lion, May 23, 2006
  13. Uhm, you're dealing with Cori here ;-)


    Inviato da X-Privat.Org - Registrazione gratuita
    Martin Heffels, May 24, 2006
  14. I have printed and stuck hundreds of paper labels, they look pretty
    good, and they're really not much trouble. Certainly easier to deal
    with than the hoops you're jumping through with that Lightscribe.

    There's a problem, though. The paper may unbalance the disk or add
    enough mass to the disk to cause some DVD players to choke. My DVD
    player (Denon) handles my labeled disks just fine, but when I lend them
    to friends, they sometimes report the disks unplayable.

    So I considered Lightscribe technology and decided a) the output looked
    crappy; b) the Lightscribe-enabled disks cost too much; and c) the whole
    thing looked like a lot of trouble.

    So I bought this:

    And to tide me over for a while, 200 of these:

    I don't need jewel cases, but Meritline has them too:

    Ritek Ridata is the most dependable brand I've found. I have had no
    luck whatsoever with anything else. Memorex fails half the time for me.
    I bought some el cheapo Be-All disks once and found they'd record just
    fine, but after about a month all the files evaporated.

    The disks I'm printing on the Epson RX700 work in everybody's players
    and they look super. I'm very happy with my new setup so far.
    Bill Anderson, May 24, 2006
  15. cmashieldscapting

    J. Clarke Guest

    Something better came along long ago. You used to be able to buy adapters
    that let you run a CD through an inkjet. Now that's a standard feature on
    many Epson models. An R-220 for under 100 bucks does fine, or you can go
    to an R-1800 which they recommend over some of their more expensive models
    for color use, or any of several models in between. Several manufacturers
    produce media that is compatible with such printers, i.e. has a white
    inkjet-compatible surface on the label side.
    J. Clarke, May 24, 2006
  16. Gene E. Bloch, May 24, 2006
  17. cmashieldscapting

    sgordon Guest

    : 1) Have you actually seen a Lightscribe label? I suspect after you see how
    : crappy it actually is you'll think twice about spending 20+ minutes PER DISC
    : to do a label.

    I actually really like the look of Lightscribe and am a happy user.

    sgordon, May 24, 2006
  18. Now, that's just SCARY!
    And they are easy to do? I have an Epson Stylus Photo RX500 with not
    that much wear on it yet.

    cmashieldscapting, May 24, 2006
  19. I'd like to at least try it before giving up, but if it proves to be
    way more trouble than it's worth am open to purchasing a printer for
    disk labeling if I can be reasonably sure it would easily produce
    spectacular results without a lot of work and expense.

    cmashieldscapting, May 24, 2006
  20. cmashieldscapting

    sgordon Guest

    I use Nero, which includes support for Lightscribe.
    The software isn't great, but after fiddling with it for a while,
    I got the results I wanted.

    You can experiment on the same disk over and over (in different places).
    That saves money while you try different things.

    I only use the highest-quality setting. It's slower, but lower quality
    settings are simply worthless.


    In wrote:
    : I'd like to at least try it before giving up, but if it proves to be
    : way more trouble than it's worth am open to purchasing a printer for
    : disk labeling if I can be reasonably sure it would easily produce
    : spectacular results without a lot of work and expense.

    : Cori
    sgordon, May 24, 2006
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