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Old January 22nd, 2008, 10:40 AM   #1
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Print own DVD labels or outsource?

What is the best method for printing your own DVD labels? Which brand?

I'm only doing a handful of these right now (literally less than five), so I'm not sure how much I would want to invest in expensive equipment that I would rarely use. Are there consumer brands available that are somewhat affordable but halfway professional?

I would not mind outsourcing this to a company that has the equipment to do it professionally, but I would think I'd need to produce 100 or more DVDs for it to be affordable per disc, right (which I'm not)?

Any suggestions?
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 10:49 AM   #2
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when you say labels do you mean for the dvd surface itself or
the inlet for the cover?
either way a lot of the new injets are very good at these tasks.
there are inkjet printable blank dvds that some printers can print directly onto.
the quality is surpirisingly good.
as for inlets, usually the paper quality plays a major part in the final look.
epsons printers are good. I use the r200.
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 10:56 AM   #3
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I would say that for runs up to maybe 75 it would be far cheaper for you to just by an Epson R260 or similar and printable media. I do this for my business and really like th lok of the matte finish. Cost of the DVD-R's I use are $0.42 and new set of ink cartridges run about $75 at Sams club but are good for around 100 discs depending on ink usage. I figure my cost for everything to burn and print 1 DVD is about $1.50.

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Old January 22nd, 2008, 10:59 AM   #4
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Never use labels. The heat in the DVD player will soften the glue, the spinning speed will cause slight displacement of the label and that will cause instability, thereby reducing play back compatibility.

Only use printable DVD's and an inkjet printer like the Canon Pixma series. The Epsons can not measure up to the Canon for printable disks.
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 11:39 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
Only use printable DVD's and an inkjet printer like the Canon Pixma series. The Epsons can not measure up to the Canon for printable disks.
Be aware that because of patents controlled by Epson, the Canon Pixma printers will not print on DVDs in the US out-of-the-box. Its supposedly possible to buy a CD/DVD tray off e-bay and download different drivers to make the US version print to DVDs, but I know my dad wasn't able to make it work with his Canon.

I'm pretty pleased with my Epson R260, although we're having DVD tray feed problems again. See http://dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=86500 for more details.

-Terence
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 01:58 PM   #6
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DVD labels or case insert?

I use my Epson R220 for DVD labels. Never use sticker labels. Print on inkjet printable DVD media. I've had great results with Verbatim inkjet printable DVD-R disks. Typically, it takes 1 decent job to pay for the printer as you can get the R280? for less than $100 and around $70 after rebate.

One thing with anything inkjet is that there is no coating on the label. I have outsourced disks before to diskmakers for disk labels that had a protective coating sprayed on them. If you were to ever do several jobs that needed many, many disks, it might make sense to spend several hundred $$ on disk printing equipment, but outsourcing that work would save time, which has a price as well.

As for case inserts, I design my artwork and get copies printed on 32 lb glossy paper at an Office Depot or Staples at about $.69 each. Saves wear on my printer, much quicker, and a better finish. No matter what they say, inkjet prints will run if they get wet.

Trust us, you don't want to use a sticker label. They may play fine at first, but it isn't long before the disk will skip due to imbalance from adhesive breakdown.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Aron Yert View Post
What is the best method for printing your own DVD labels? Which brand?

I'm only doing a handful of these right now (literally less than five), so I'm not sure how much I would want to invest in expensive equipment that I would rarely use. Are there consumer brands available that are somewhat affordable but halfway professional?

I would not mind outsourcing this to a company that has the equipment to do it professionally, but I would think I'd need to produce 100 or more DVDs for it to be affordable per disc, right (which I'm not)?

Any suggestions?

Last edited by Jacob Burson; January 22nd, 2008 at 10:38 PM.
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 02:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacob Burson View Post
One thing with anything inkjet is that there is no coating on the label. I have outsorced disks before to diskmakers for disk labels that had a protective coating sprayed on them.
I also use an epson printer, I find the print to be extremely durable. how much better is the clear coat?
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 06:29 PM   #8
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I'll also vote for the Epson printers. I've had two an old 320 and a new 595. The new one's great. It's a subjective comparison, but I think the print quality is better. It's definitely faster and was almost free when I bought it last month. $125 at Big Box store.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 08:18 PM   #9
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Will the ink smear?
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Old January 24th, 2008, 08:57 PM   #10
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Will the ink smear?
I have never had the ink smear. once its dry, I can not scratch it with a fingernail. I print one, and place it on the spindle. the only thing that concerns me is sticking together. I usually print at least a hundred at a time, and I put them on the spindle as they are done. I have gotten in the habit of printing them first, and letting them sit a while before I burn them, so if the ink sticks to the opposing discs surface, then the burner will not burn it, and I will find the problem. I have never actually had this as a problem, only a fear. I have sold around a thousand discs, and no returns yet. my customers primarily use lower quality equipment, if that matters.
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Old January 27th, 2008, 12:44 AM   #11
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I bought an Epson 280 last week ($80). I tried burning to and printing on printable Maxell DVD +R discs. The printed image was a bit flat on these, and I could never get the DVD +Rs to play correctly in my 3-year old DVD player.

I bought 50 Taiyo Yuden Watershield DVD -R discs yesterday at a local shop (about $38). They have a very nice glossy surface and are hub printable. The contrast and saturation are excellent, and I like the glossy surface. They are supposed to be water proof. I found no smearing of the ink even after only a few minutes of dry time. Burned at 6x, the Taiyos seem to work fine on my player.

Pat
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Old January 27th, 2008, 08:16 AM   #12
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Hi guys, I also strongly vote for the Epsons. I have had my R200 since they first came out and love it to death. I use the Verbatim +R printables, and as another poster stated, once they dry, you can run a fingernail across them without much issue. I have sprayed on some scrapbooking fixatif by 3m which works well as a clearcoat and giving a slightly matte finish. But in general I have had no issues whatsoever.

For small runs, I am not sure how the "big boys" do it, but I know that one I recieve brochures from and have order cases, advertises the Epson setups and also the Primera setups which makes me think they may possibly use them also. But you will find great results with the Epson I believe if you try it.

One thing I use and highly recommend to anyone once their warranty is up is to convert these babies to CIS(continuous ink system). The one I have, the quality is just as good, if not better once calibrated correctly as the stock Epson cartridges and it takes your printing/ink cost to laser levels if not lower(I have been running my CIS since the beginning of September and haven't gone through 1/2 of my ink tanks yet, and I print not only discs, but many documents now also) once you factor in you can buy 4oz bottles of the complete set for these printers for 35.00. The intial installis the only thing you have to take yoru time on, but once installed, they run like a charm, you don't have to worry about ink, and the quality is good(and adding additional ink is extremely simplistic to say the least)..

However, the Epson in its stock config is good also, you just have to pay the higher cost for your ink replenishment...
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Old January 28th, 2008, 11:25 AM   #13
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Just to add my opinion...

I no longer use labels on DVD's OR CD's for all the reasons stated above, plus, I think that discs printed directly look much better than labels.

As for the printer, I've been using an Epson R200 almost since they first came out. One of the minor problems I've had is slipping on the feed tray. I overcame that by CAREFULLY AND LIGHTLY pushing the tray as it feeds. However, I've read here (search for it) that there's a better 'fix' for that problem. (I'll get to it one day!) The other 'problem' isn't really a problem, just maintenance that needs to be performed every now and then. The rollers, head cleaning sponge, etc, need to be cleaned to get rid of the smearing problems that crop up after a few thousand cycles of discs, inserts, liner notes, invoices, and other business printing. (I know, I need to use another printer for everything else; I've recently started doing so.)

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Old January 29th, 2008, 12:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Terence Murphy View Post
Be aware that because of patents controlled by Epson, the Canon Pixma printers will not print on DVDs in the US out-of-the-box. Its supposedly possible to buy a CD/DVD tray off e-bay and download different drivers to make the US version print to DVDs, but I know my dad wasn't able to make it work with his Canon.

I'm pretty pleased with my Epson R260, although we're having DVD tray feed problems again. See http://dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=86500 for more details.

-Terence
Hi all,

Terry's correct that due to patent issues, the Pixma requires DVD tray enabling (through the front panel buttons) for units purchased in the United States. Many of us have had success performing the simple setting change and purchasing the DVD tray on ebay. Just be sure to purchase the appropriate tray for your model of Pixma.

I'd never sell DVDs with sticky labels, worrying they'd get hot and fly off in the customer's computer. I highly recommend the best - the Taiyo Yuden watershield. If factors like having the lowest dropouts, best media longevity, and fantastic visual appearance that's truly durable are important to you and your clients, check it out.

Good luck, Michael
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Old August 29th, 2008, 06:30 PM   #15
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Keep in mind that the Epson printers will print random streaks now and then, so you will probably have a fair amount of coasters. Now that I'm burning Blu-Ray I'm freaked out about this, and am changing my artwork to very high-key stuff to baby the process.
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