How to Create a DVD With Video & Data That Can Be Played on a DVD Player

by David Wayne

Video files play back easily with a computer, but playing them on a DVD player can prove more complicated. Making backup copies of your DVD library or burning your home movies onto a disk with menus protects your videos from accidentally being erased from your hard drive. With DVDs that are playable in a DVD player, your home movies can be seen on a big-screen television instead of a smaller computer monitor. Many computer programs offer ways to create DVDs with video and data for your DVD player. Your DVD player may be compatible with video copies burned on DVD+R or DVD-R disks.

Preparation

Download or purchase the software you wish to use. DVD Flick and DVDStyler are free, open-source programs, but many other programs are available for download for a price. Install the software according to the instructions.

Convert the video files you wish to play on your DVD player into MPEG-2 format. Skip this step if you are using DVD Flick, as this program converts files automatically.

Open a new project in your DVD authoring software. Configure the project settings so that your DVD will play in NTSC format if you live in the United States and PAL format for Europe or Asia.

Set the capacity of the DVD in your burner either to 4.7 GB or 8.5 GB if you are using a double-layer disk. Most DVD writing programs also allow you to set the quality level of your finished disk. Set this to your desired level.

Creation

Browse for MPEG-2 video files to add to your project. Use any type of video file with DVD Flick because it converts them before burning your disk.

Add chapter information to each video file if you want the option of searching through them on your DVD player. The method for adding chapter information is available on the main panel in DVD Flick. DVDStyler creates titles automatically.

Browse for images on your hard drive to use for your DVD menu. Use the control panel of your authoring software to add menu titles and buttons to your menu. Coordinate your button properties with the design of your menu screen.

Click the "Start" button or "Burn" button, depending on the software you are using. The choice of DVD drive speed will most likely be automatic, although you may want to change this setting if you have an old or slow DVD burner.

Tip

  • check Burning DVDs with video and data can take several hours. Start the process when you are planning to be away from the computer, such as before bed or before leaving the house. This way you will avoid using up your computer's resources.

Warning

  • close DVD-RAM disks will not work in a consumer DVD player. If the DVD burner in your computer is a DVD-RAM drive you will need to replace it with one that burns DVD+R or DVD-R.

Items you will need

About the Author

David Wayne has been writing since 2010, with technology columns appearing in several regional newspapers in Texas. Wayne graduated from the University of Houston in 2005, earning a Bachelor of Arts in communications.

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