Creating a New Project

When you open DVD Studio Pro, a new project file is automatically created. You can also create a new project at any time.

To create a new project
  1. Choose File > New (or press Command-N).

    A dialog asks whether you want to save the currently open project. Once you select an answer, a new, empty project opens.

  2. Choose File > Save, specify a name and location for your project file, then click Save.

    Saving your project early ensures that if any files need to be saved to your project during the authoring process, they have a place to be written to.

Once you have created and saved your project, there are four areas you might want to configure before you begin.

Setting the Video Standard

The DVD-Video specification supports two video standards: NTSC and PAL. This may appear to leave out those countries that use the SECAM or PAL-M video standards. However, because the MPEG video on DVDs is in a component format, your sources, once MPEG-encoded, only need to conform to the line and frame rates of either the NTSC or PAL standard.

  • Use the NTSC video standard: If you are in a country that supports either the NTSC or PAL-M video standard. Both standards use a 29.97 fps frame rate with 525 lines per frame. As a general rule, if your country uses 60 Hz AC power, you should use the NTSC video standard.
  • Use the PAL video standard: If you are in a country that supports either the PAL or SECAM video standard. Both standards use a 25 fps frame rate with 625 lines per frame. As a general rule, if your country uses 50 Hz AC power, you should use the PAL video standard.

See Video Standards of the World for a list of countries and the video standards they support.

You cannot mix NTSC and PAL assets on a DVD. See NTSC or PAL? for more information. Also see Changing a Project’s Video Standard for information on converting a project from one video standard to the other.

Important: If you have any doubts about whether your system is set to the correct standard, you should verify its setting (described next) and change it if necessary before you start adding assets to your project.

To set the video standard for the current project in the Disc Inspector
  1. Choose View > Show Inspector if the Inspector is not visible.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • Select the project’s name (next to the disc icon) in the Outline tab. (Choose Window > Outline if the Outline tab is not visible.)

    • Click an empty area in the Graphical tab.

    The Disc Inspector appears.

    Figure. Video Standard setting in the General tab of the Disc Inspector.
  3. In the General tab, select either NTSC or PAL to set the project’s video standard.

Note: You cannot change a project’s video standard once you have added motion assets to it. See Changing a Project’s Video Standard for more information.

The other Disc Inspector settings can be made later. See Finishing a Project for details on these settings.

To set the video standard for DVD Studio Pro in the Preferences window
  1. Choose DVD Studio Pro > Preferences, or press Command-Comma (,) to open the Preferences window.

  2. Click the Project icon at the top of the Preferences window to open the Project pane.

  3. Choose either the NTSC or PAL video standard.

This setting only affects projects created after it is set.

Setting the DVD Standard

You can choose from two DVD standards when you start your project: the original SD DVD standard based on standard definition video assets and the new HD DVD standard designed to use high definition video assets.

Most asset formats supported by SD-based DVDs are also supported by HD-based DVDs. The exception is MPEG-1 video, which is not supported in HD projects. See About Standard and High Definition DVDs for more information.

There are two places to set the DVD standard—each is used for different circumstances.

Setting the DVD Standard in DVD Studio Pro Preferences

You can set the DVD standard for all new projects in the Project pane of DVD Studio Pro Preferences. This setting does not affect the current project.

To set the DVD standard for new projects
  1. Choose DVD Studio Pro > Preferences, or press Command-Comma (,) to open the Preferences window:

  2. Click the Project icon at the top of the Preferences window to open the Project pane.

  3. Choose either SD DVD or HD DVD from the DVD Standard pop-up menu.

Setting the DVD Standard in the Disc Inspector

The General tab in the Disc Inspector contains a setting that shows the DVD standard for the currently open project.

  • If SD DVD is selected: You can change the project to HD DVD.
  • If HD DVD is selected: The settings are deactivated and you cannot change the project to SD DVD.

Note: If you create a new project and it has HD DVD selected when you actually intend to create an SD project, you must change the DVD Standard setting in the Project pane of DVD Studio Pro Preferences.

To change the DVD standard for the current project using the Disc Inspector
  1. Choose View > Show Inspector if the Inspector is not visible.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • Select the project’s name (next to the disc icon) in the Outline tab.

    • Click an empty area in the Graphical tab.

    The Disc Inspector appears.

  3. Select the General tab (if it’s not already selected).

  4. Note the DVD Standard setting.

    • If SD DVD is selected: You can change the project to HD DVD. A warning appears saying that you will not be able to change the project back to the SD DVD standard.
    • If HD DVD is selected: The settings are deactivated and you cannot change the project to SD DVD.

See Changing a Project’s DVD Standard for more information.

Naming the Project

By default, each DVD disc you create is automatically given the same name as the project’s file, entered when you saved it. The disc’s name can be seen by the viewer when the finished DVD is played on a computer or on some set-top DVD players.

In most cases, the name of the project’s file is suitable to use as the disc’s name. However, there are some cases in which you might want to set the disc’s name independently of the project’s filename. For example, you may have several versions of a project, such as Bicycles 1, Bicycles 2, and Bicycles 3, that you will choose from for the final project. In this case, if you choose the Bicycles 2 version of the project, you would not want the final disc to appear as Bicycles 2 when the viewer plays the title—you would want it to say simply Bicycles.

The name of the disc is restricted to uppercase letters, numbers, and the underscore character. There is a maximum of 32 characters. The project’s filename is automatically converted to work with these restrictions when it is used as the disc’s name. For example, a project filename of Bicycle 2 is converted to a disc name of BICYCLE2.

To name the disc in the Disc Inspector
  1. Do one of the following:

    • Select the disc’s name (next to the disc icon) in the Outline tab.

    • Click an empty area in the Graphical tab.

    The Disc Inspector appears.

    Note: Choose View > Show Inspector if the Inspector is not visible.

  2. Enter the new name for the disc in the Name field at the top of the Disc Inspector, then press Return.

Setting the Disc Size

The DVD Studio Pro default is set to a 4.7 GB DVD-5. This setting affects both the actual disc burning process when you finish your project and the disc meter icon in the toolbar.

In addition to showing the estimated project size numerically, the disc meter also shows how full the disc is getting graphically. The disc meter uses the project’s disc size setting to determine the disc’s capacity.

As long as you intend to burn DVD-5 discs, the disc meter is accurate. If you intend to burn a blue laser, dual-layer, or 8 cm disc, you need to set the disc size to the proper format so that the disc meter reflects the changed requirements of your project.

To set a project’s disc size
  1. Do one of the following:

    • Select the project’s name (next to the disc icon) in the Outline tab.

    • Click an empty area in the Graphical tab.

    The Disc Inspector appears. (Choose Window > Outline if the Outline tab is not visible. Choose View > Show Inspector if the Inspector is not visible.)

  2. Click the Disc/Volume tab in the Disc Inspector.

    Figure. Basic settings in the Disc/Volume tab of the Disc Inspector.
  3. Select Red Laser or Blue Laser as the Disc Media (HD projects only).

  4. Select Single or Dual as the Layer Options.

  5. Select 8 cm or the standard 12 cm as the Disc Size.

The maximum size for the project appears below the Disc Size setting.

The other Disc Inspector settings can be made later. See Finishing a Project for details on these settings. See Disc Options for more information on available DVD sizes. See topics relating to finishing a project for more information on these settings.

Setting the Project’s First Play

An important consideration when starting a project is deciding which of its elements will be the first to appear when a viewer starts playing the DVD. Some examples might be:

  • Using the default setting and opening Menu 1 when the DVD starts playing

  • Setting First Play to a motion menu or track that plays before the main menu appears. This motion menu or track could be a short animated company logo or a disclaimer.

  • Creating a DVD for continuous kiosk playback. You may want to have a disc that plays a track over and over, with no menus or other viewer interaction. In that case, you would set the track to be the First Play element and set the track’s End Jump setting to be that same track.

  • Running a script to determine if the DVD should be allowed to play on this player. A script could also be used to configure playback to match the DVD player’s languages or its display’s aspect ratio. The script would end by choosing the first element to play for the viewer. (The viewer would not actually know that a script is the First Play element.)

To set the project’s First Play to an element other than Menu 1, you must first create that element. For this reason, you do not have to (and often can’t) set the project’s First Play when you start creating your project, but it is a good idea to have a plan in mind.

You can set the project’s First Play in the Disc Inspector, the Connections tab, the Outline tab, and the Graphical tab. See Assigning the First Play Element for information on using the Outline and Graphical tabs to set the First Play. See Settings at the Top of the Disc Inspector for information on using the Disc Inspector to set the First Play. See Source Details for information on using the Connections tab to set the First Play.