Data integrity is always the most important factor when considering the delivery method of your CD, DVD or Blu-ray master. Below I will outline some simple tips to make sure your master is ready and your content produces great duplications or replications that are on time.
The Basics :
DVD Masters need to be submitted as an authored DVD. This means that if you have been through editing, you need to get your edited project on an authoring platform and create your menus, compression, and final DVD. Some common authoring platforms are: DVD Studio Pro, iDVD, Sonic Scenarist, Nero, Adobe Encore. If you are not sure that you have authored your DVD just give us a call and we should be able to determine the state of your project.
Once your project is complete and you have an authored master, in most circumstances we recommend that you submit a fully working DVD-R master that you have thoroughly watched, have checked all menu functionality and are completely satisfied with the quality of your final master. Once we receive your master we guarantee to give you exact copies of your project back, so be sure you are happy with your master before you end up with 2000 discs you don’t like or cannot use.
Electronic Submission of DVD Master:
Some times we have clients that would like to save a day or two of snail mail and submit their DVD disc image master electronically. We typically discourage this as in most circumstances we would charge to create the DVD master from a disc image, then, to insure the content and integrity of the master, would typically send that master disc back to our client for final approval on the master. Ultimately this would result in longer approval time. The best way to ensure we do a great job on your project is to submit a hard master that has been thoroughly checked for functionality and quality.
The only caveat to this method of master delivery is if you would like CSS copy protection on your DVD video. In this circumstance, you will need to submit your master as either a DDP master or a DLT master.
CD Audio Master Basics :
For submitting CD Audio masters, the best standard to submit you master under is the “Red Book Audio Standard”. Particularly when replicating your disc, if you want your audio to be flawless and manufacturing to go smooth. If you would like to address things like having the text show up on your CD, embedded metadata and ISRC codes, look up the Red Book Audio Standards, have your music mastered at a credible mastering studio with an experienced audio engineer.
If you are working on a budget and cannot afford an audio engineer, you can create you master with any number of commercially available audio programs. This method is often very successful, particularly if you have limited requirements for you CD,…ie. do not need CD text to show, do not need metadata or ISRC codes embedded in your music.
Electronic Submission of CD Master:
On occasion we do receive requests from clients who would like to upload their tracks to us and have DVD Copycat create the master. Again, we usually recommend that you submit a hard copy CD-R master according to Red Book Audio standards. If you would like us to assemble your master, we can drop your tracks on a CD, but this often times is problematic, as mistakes can be made or preferences can be set not according to the expectations of our clients. ie, time between tracks is to long or short, track order is not correct, etc. For these reasons, when we do create audio masters, we do send that master back to the client for approval before manufacturing.
Data CDs and CD-ROMs:
In most circumstances Data CDs and CD-ROMs must be submitted as a hard master on CD-R. Data CDs can often have auto executable files or complex software applications, or too many files to accurately transfer over the internet. So when submitting this type of master, we recommend sending us a fully functional CD-R. In some circumstances we will create a master for you, but in this exception we will need to send you a copy of the master we created for your approval.