DVD Authoring Software for between $200 to $600 at DVinfo.net

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Old December 19th, 2002, 12:26 AM   #1
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DVD Authoring Software for between $200 to $600

There appears to be two major companies that offer DVD authoring programs for between this amount of money: Sonic Solutions and Pinnacle.

Which company/program offers the best bang for the buck? FYI, I'm totally new to the DVD authoring world. Just want to be able to produce DVD's that can be played on "consumer" machines. Any suggestions/direction will be gratefully appreciated.

My computer:

Dell Workstation 420
Pentium III 733
512 MB RAM
2 HD both at 7200
XP Pro
Vegas Video 3

(Currently on the look out for a DVD player; either Pioneer's A05 or Sony's newest model that does both -r/rw & +r/rw)

Mac Pro (12-core 3.33GHz): OS X 10.11.6; 32 GBs RAM; NVIDIA Quadro K5000; 8 internal SSDs; 2 external Raid set-ups via eSATA; MOTU 2408 MK3; various audio/video programs
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Old December 19th, 2002, 04:54 AM   #2
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DVD authoring software

Back in March my Pioneer A03 came with Sonic MyDVD, which I was able to upgrade to 3.0 for about twenty bucks. Unless you buy OEM you'll get some authoring software with your deck purchase. You might want to play with whatever it is for a while before spending anything on more software. What I have makes playable DVD-Rs with basic menu options for the viewer - selectable thumbnails in the button, backgrounds both stock and from Photoshop (haven't made any yet), chapter points (haven't used this function yet). If you want animated buttons, music, background video, you have to move up but initially just play with what's bundled with the deck.
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Old December 19th, 2002, 08:54 AM   #3
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The difference in price seems to dictate the amount of freedom that you have in menu creation, navigation, subs, languages etc. I've played with Sonic's Scenarist and ReelDVD (their supposed pro packages) and whoa!, don't expect to be handheld with wizards and templates with those packages. Expect some serious time with manuals.

If you are looking for the 'Hollywood' feel and need subs and languages, then you jump pretty quick up to $800 - 1500+.

In some of the more consumer versions like MyDVD and DVDComplete(Dazzle) they make all that very easy, but limit some control.

On the lower end, I like and use DVDComplete ($99, I think). Seems to have the most control for the lowest cost.

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Old December 23rd, 2002, 11:38 AM   #4
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For around $279 I like Ulead DVD Workshop 1.3. This product is easy to use , failry flexible and powerful. It does nto have all the control that something like DVDIt! SE has, but it is not as quirky o runstbale as DVDIt! is. Every projec tI have made with it works great. I can;t wait to see what they do in next version, hopefully they will add more control tolinking and button actions.
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Old December 23rd, 2002, 06:49 PM   #5
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Over at VCDHelp they have a thread "What do you use to author your DVDs?" Leading at 24% was Ulead DVD Workshop, in second place was Workshop's little brother, Ulead DVD Movie Factory.

I have had good experiences with both programs, but unfortunately Movie Factory requires you to have a single MPEG2 file if you want the DVD to play continuously. (But curiously enough it will play continuously a VCD or SVCD made of multiple MPEG files). If you are willing to choose each section from a menu, or have only a single section, Movie Factory is a simple and inexpensive way to start producing your own DVDs.

(The above may not be an issue for you, but hour plus MPEGs are a bitch to work with and very difficult to chapter point in Movie Factory.)

I can also recommend VCDHelp: vcdhelp.com is a great place to go with all of your DVD player, burner, and software questions.
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Old December 23rd, 2002, 07:19 PM   #6
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If you think Chapter points are a bitch in Workshop, try DVDIt!, they are impossible there at least DVD Workshop gives you time control to pin poitn what you want. And I agree working with large MPEG files is cumbersome, but then that is why I keep upgrading my system :-)
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Old December 24th, 2002, 07:03 AM   #7
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Actually, they are NOT impossible in DVDit - I do it every time I author a DVD. You just have to do it manually to get it right.

1. Get the chapter point time codes from the NLE
2. In DVDit, change the timecode from "T" to "C"
3. Double-click on the timeline to create a chapter point
4. Manually enter the timecode for that chapter point
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for remaining chapter points

Yes, it take a little bit of work but it CAN be done in DVDit.
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