The most common video aspect ratio, used for NTSC and PAL video standards. Also known as the 1.33 aspect ratio. See also aspect ratio.


The widescreen aspect ratio supported by the DVD-Video specification. Also known as the 1.78 aspect ratio. See also anamorphic, aspect ratio.

AC-3 audio 

A compressed audio format developed by Dolby Laboratories. Also known as Dolby Digital audio. Supports single-channel through 5.1 surround sound configurations. The AC-3 encoder in Compressor outputs AC-3 format audio.

active area 

The rectangular area that defines the part of the overlay graphic used for a button. Also defines a buttons hot spot that can be clicked when viewing the title on a computer. See also button.


A type of widescreen video in which the video uses the same frame size as standard 4:3 video, but with a horizontally compressed image, giving it a distorted appearance. Widescreen SD-based DVDs require you to use anamorphic 16:9 video.

aspect ratio 

A video frames width-to-height ratio on your viewing screen. The most common aspect ratio is 4:3 used for standard video. The DVD specification also supports the 16:9 aspect ratio. See also 4:3, 16:9, anamorphic.


The audio, video, and still image files used by DVD Studio Pro in authoring DVD projects.

AUDIO_TS folder 

One of two folders required on standard definition DVD-Video discs (the VIDEO_TS folder is the other). The AUDIO_TS folder is reserved for use on DVD-Audio titles, and is always created but left empty when building projects with DVD Studio Pro. See also VIDEO_TS folder.


The process of creating a DVD. Authoring a DVD project requires you to use your sources to create elements, such as menus and tracks, connect the elements so that the viewer can get from one to the other, and then format the project into a DVD-compliant set of files, image, or DVD. See also elements.

authoring media 

The DVD-R format that supports the Cutting Master Format (CMF) for adding advanced features to master discs supplied to a replication facility. Requires using a special authoring DVD-R drive. See also Cutting Master Format (CMF), general media.

AVC (Advanced Video Codec) 

See H.264.

background image 

All menus have a background image, over which the menu’s buttons are placed. The background can be a still image or a motion video (creating a motion menu). See also motion menu.


Bi-directional frame. In an MPEG video stream, a B-frame contains the motion differences between I-frames and P-frames occurring before and after it. With respect to file sizes, these are the most efficient frame types, although they have the greatest difficulty in handling abrupt scene changes. See also Group of Pictures (GOP), I-frame, P-frame.

bit rate 

The number of bits per second that makes up a digital video or audio asset. The higher the bit rate, the better the quality. However, higher bit rates require larger file sizes and can cause playback problems if the DVD player is unable to keep up. The DVD specification places bit rate limits on assets used in DVD titles.

blue laser 

The name for the new disc format supported by HD-based DVDs. The name refers to the color of the laser that plays the discs. Because a blue laser has a shorter wavelength than the red laser used with traditional SD-based DVDs, it is able to handle data that is more tightly packed than on red laser discs. This results in a little more than three times higher disc capacity. See also red laser.


To compile the project into its DVD-compliant format, creating the AUDIO_TS and VIDEO_TS folders for SD projects, and the HVDVD_TS folder for HD projects. The streams that make up a track are multiplexed into a single video object file. See also format.


To write data to a disc. Within DVD Studio Pro, burn refers to a process that builds the project and then formats and writes it to a DVD-R, simplifying the process. See also build, format.


Each DVD menu has at least one button that the viewer can activate to access areas within the DVD. You can also place buttons over a video track. DVD Studio Pro supports three button types: overlay-based using an overlay graphic, shape-based using supplied or custom shape graphics, and layer-based using layers in an Adobe Photoshop (PSD) format file. You can connect buttons to a wide variety of project elements, including buttons on other menus, tracks, stories, slideshows, and scripts. See also button navigation, button states, motion button.

button navigation 

The actions that occur when a viewer presses a remote control’s arrow buttons. You can manually configure each button’s navigation settings or use the DVD Studio Pro Auto Assign feature to automatically set the navigation of all buttons on a menu at once. It is important to set the navigation so that viewers can logically get from the current button to the desired one.

buttons over video 

Interactive buttons that appear over a video stream by way of a subtitle stream. Used to provide the viewer with viewing options while watching a title’s main program. Also known as interactive subtitles and interactive markers.

button states 

Each button on a menu can be in one of three states: normal, selected, and activated. In the normal state, the button displays its inactive condition. All buttons on a menu except one are in the normal state. A button is selected when the viewer navigates to it. Only one button at a time can be in the selected state. The selected button becomes activated when the viewer presses the remote control’s Enter button. Depending on the button type, highlights or layers are used to indicate each button’s state.


Places in a track where you can connect to. Commonly used to identify scenes for a chapter index menu. You can assign up to 99 chapters in each track.


The term used to describe a video or audio asset, especially after it has been added to a track. See also assets.

color mapping 

When working with overlay graphics, the process of assigning a color and opacity setting to colors used in the overlay graphic. You assign separate colors and opacities for all three button states (normal, selected, and advanced). See also overlay.


See build.

constant bit rate (CBR) encoding 

A video MPEG encoding method that uses the same bit rate for the entire video file. Its primary advantage is that you can reliably predict the resulting file size. Its disadvantage is that all video scenes, whether still or with a lot of motion, are treated the same. See also variable bit rate (VBR) encoding.

Content Scrambling System (CSS) 

Provides digital-based copyright protection for an SD DVD’s contents. See also Copy Generation Management System (CGMS), Macrovision.

Copy Generation Management System (CGMS) 

Used to set whether an SD DVD can have unlimited copies made, a single copy made, or no copies made. Allowing no copies to be made activates the CSS and Macrovision settings. See also Content Scrambling System (CSS), Macrovision.

Cutting Master Format (CMF) 

A format that provides the information needed by replication facilities to add advanced features to a DVD, such as support for copy protection and dual-layer discs. The cutting master format can be applied to DLTs and authoring DVD-Rs, but not general DVD-Rs.

Digital Linear Tape (DLT) drive 

The tape drive most often used to supply an SD DVD project to a replication facility. A separate tape is written for each project layer during the format process. See also disc description protocol (DDP), format.

Digital Theatre Systems (DTS) audio 

A compressed audio format for single channel through 5.1 surround sound configurations. Requires an external DTS decoder for playing on your computer.

disc description protocol (DDP) 

The file type most often used when formatting a project onto a DLT drive. See also Digital Linear Tape (DLT) drive.

Dolby Digital 

See AC-3 audio.

double-layer disc 

A recordable disc format that you can burn a dual-layer project to. Because it has the same capacity as a dual-layer disc, it is able to use the dual-layer settings in your project to place the break point, making it possible to test the project before sending it to the replicator. See also dual-layer disc.

double-sided disc 

A DVD with content on both sides of the disc. Most DVD players require you to turn the disc over to play the second side. Each side can be single- or dual-layer. See also dual-layer disc.

drop frame timecode 

Timecode that represents the actual time duration of NTSC at 29.97 frames per second (fps). To achieve this accuracy in numbering the frames, two frame numbers are dropped every minute on the minute, except for the tenth minute. See also non-drop frame timecode, timecode.

drop zone 

An element you can add to a menus background. You can assign a still image or moving video asset to the drop zone. You can size, position, and rotate the drop zone. When you build the title, the drop zone is merged with the background. Drop zones cannot be linked to other elements in the project.

dual-layer disc 

A DVD with two layers on a single disc side, almost doubling a single-layer disc’s capacity. While you can burn a dual-layer project on a double-layer drive, they are most often created by a replication facility. See also double-layer disc, double-sided disc, opposite track path (OTP), parallel track path (PTP).

duplication facility 

When you need to create multiple copies of a DVD, and the disc fits on a standard DVD-R and requires no special high-end features such as copy protection, you can use a duplication facility. The duplication process creates DVD-R copies from a DVD-R that you burn on your system; they can automate the process and add professional labels. See also replication facility.


A feature in DVD Studio Pro that allows you to add additional interactivity to your title when it is played on a computer. With DVD@CCESS, you can add links to menus, tracks, and markers that can be used to open an application on the computer to display extra content. For example, you can open the system’s web browser and direct it to a specific URL.


The DVD format supported by the Apple SuperDrive, using write-once discs. See also authoring media, Cutting Master Format (CMF), general media.


A DVD with files in addition to those included on a standard DVD-Video disc. These files can be accessed when the title is played on a computer—they are ignored by standard set-top DVD players. The files can be almost anything you can write to a disc such as additional graphics or software.


The parts of a DVD project, such as menus, tracks, stories, slideshows, and scripts. Authoring a project involves creating the elements and connecting them together. See also authoring.


The process of converting video or audio to a different format. For DVD projects, this means converting the video to an MPEG-2 file, and the audio to one of several DVD-compliant formats.

First Play 

The element of a project that appears when the title begins playing. You can assign any of your projects elements as the First Play.


The process of writing the build files to an output device, which can be a DVD-R drive, an DLT drive, or your system’s hard disk. See also build.

general media 

The DVD-R format most commonly used by DVD-R drives, including the Apple SuperDrive. It does not support the Cutting Master Format (CMF). See also authoring media, Cutting Master Format (CMF).

General Purpose Register Memories (GPRMs) 

DVD players contain memory registers that are set aside for use by DVDs while they play. Scripts in a DVD use the GPRMs to store values used to provide special playback features, such as language customization or random playback. See also System Parameter Register Memories (SPRMs).

Group of Pictures (GOP) 

A small section of an MPEG-2 encoded video clip, built from one I-frame and several B-frames and P-frames. Typical GOP sizes range from a few frames to a maximum of 18 frames (NTSC) or 15 frames (PAL). Marker placement and video trims can only occur at GOP boundaries. See also B-frame, I-frame, P-frame.


Based on the MPEG-4 part 10 format, the H.264 format, the H.264 video format, also known as Advanced Video Codec (AVC), provides for encoding with about twice the efficiency as with the MPEG-2 format. This results in better quality at the same bit rate, or you can choose to use a lower bit rate to achieve the same quality (with a smaller file size). In DVD Studio Pro, the H.264 format can only be used with HD projects.


An HD video format, using high bit rate MPEG-2 encoding, designed to be recorded on standard mini-DV tapes. HDV video can be edited in Final Cut Pro 5 and used in your HD projects without ever needing to be transcoded.


The folder required on HD DVD-Video discs. DVD Studio Pro creates the HVDVD_TS folder when you build your HD project. It contains all of the video, audio, subtitle, menu, and navigation files that make up your HD DVD-Video title.


Intra frame. In an MPEG video stream, I-frames, also known as reference or key frames, contain the complete image of the current frame. Unlike B-frames and P-frames, I-frames do not rely on other frames to provide image information. Each GOP contains one I-frame. See also B-frame, Group of Pictures (GOP), P-frame.

interactive markers 

See buttons over video.

interactive subtitles 

See buttons over video.

jacket picture 

An optional part of the DVD-Video specification that is intended to allow a DVD player to display a graphic representing a DVD, either on a separate display or when the DVD player is stopped.

layered menu creation method 

A method of creating menus that takes advantage of a Photoshop PSD file having separate layers for each button in its three states (normal, selected, and activated). This allows you to use complex graphics for the button highlights; however, you cannot include a motion video background or audio. See also button states, standard menu creation method.


A method of displaying 16:9 video on a 4:3 monitor. The entire frame appears, with black bars at the top and bottom. See also pan-scan.

Line 21 support 

In NTSC systems, the video line that can contain special data. Most often used to contain closed caption information.


Provides analog-based copyright protection for an SD DVD’s contents. See also Content Scrambling System (CSS), Copy Generation Management System (CGMS).


An element you can add to a track to identify specific parts of the track’s content. There are several marker types, including chapter markers used to link chapter buttons and button highlight markers used to control buttons over video. You can have up to 99 chapter markers in a track, and up to 255 total markers in a track. Markers can only be placed at GOP boundaries. See also Group of Pictures (GOP).


An element in a project that provides buttons for the purpose of connecting to other elements in your project, such as tracks and slideshows. A menu can have a still or full motion background, and can include audio. See also background image, drop zone, motion button, motion menu.

motion button 

Button shapes that can display a thumbnail image of an assigned asset. The asset can be a still image or a video clip.

motion menu 

A menu that contains moving video content, either as the background, a motion button, or a drop zone. See also background image, drop zone, motion button.


Acronym for Moving Picture Encoding Group. A group of encoding standards that define the MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 encoding standards used by DVDs.


The process of combining multiple streams, such as video streams, audio streams, and subtitle streams, into a single stream. This occurs when you build your title and create DVD-compatible streams. See also build.


See multiplexing.

non-drop frame timecode 

Normal NTSC timecode, where frames are numbered sequentially and there are 30 frames per second, 60 seconds per minute, and 60 minutes per hour. Because NTSC’s frame rate is actually 29.97 fps, non-drop frame timecode is off by 3 seconds and 18 frames per hour in comparison to actual elapsed time. See also drop frame timecode, timecode.


Abbreviation for National Television Standards Committee. The organization that defines North American broadcast standards. The term NTSC video refers to the video standard defined by the committee, which has a specifically limited color gamut, is interlaced, and is approximately 720 x 480 pixels, 29.97 fps. See also PAL.

one-pass and two-pass VBR (variable bit rate) encoding 

See variable bit rate (VBR) encoding.

opposite track path (OTP) 

Used when creating dual-layer discs to control where the second layer starts. With OTP, the second layer starts at the outside edge of the disc, which is the opposite of the first layer, which starts at the disc’s inside edge. See also dual-layer disc, parallel track path (PTP).


A still graphic that provides the highlight information for buttons when creating menus or buttons over video. Overlays can be simple, using a single color on a white background, or advanced, using up to four predefined colors. You use color mapping to assign highlight colors to those used in the overlay, setting different colors for each button state (normal, selected, and activated). See also color mapping.


Acronym for Phase Alternating Line. A 25 fps (720 x 576 pixels) interlaced video format used by many European countries. See also NTSC.


A method for displaying 16:9 video on a 4:3 monitor. Content is cropped at each end so that the 4:3 monitor is filled. An MPEG-2 video clip with pan and scan can include vectors that dynamically change the part of the picture that is cropped. See also letterbox.

parallel track path (PTP) 

Used when creating dual-layer discs to control where the second layer starts. With PTP, the second layer starts at the inside edge of the disc, the same as the first layer. See also dual-layer disc, opposite track path (OTP).


Specialized shapes that provide features not normally available with traditional shapes, such as shading and colorization. You cannot create your own patches. See also shapes.


Predicted frame. In an MPEG video stream, P-frames are encoded based on the closest preceding I-frame or P-frame. They can be referenced by B-frames occurring before or after them. With respect to file size, they are not as efficient as B-frames, but handle abrupt scene changes better. See also B-frame, Group of Pictures (GOP), I-frame.

pixel aspect ratio 

The distance between a pixel, the one next to it, and the one below it defines its aspect ratio. A square pixel aspect ratio, as used on computer systems and HD video monitors, has the same pixel distance in both directions. SD video monitors do not have the same distance in both directions, and have rectangular pixels. NTSC and PAL video each have different pixel aspect ratios. This difference must be accounted for when creating graphics on a computer for use in an SD project.


When you author a DVD title with DVD Studio Pro, you create and work in a project.

red laser 

Refers to the color of the laser used to play the discs used by SD projects. See also blue laser.

region codes 

DVDs can be set to play only in certain parts of the world by selecting the supported regions when you author your title. The DVD specification divides the world into six regions plus an additional region for use by airlines and cruise ships.

replication facility 

You can use a replication facility when you need to reproduce a significant number of copies of your DVD (generally more than 100). You must use a replication facility if you require dual-layer discs, or if you intend to include high-end features such as copy protection or region codes. Replication facilities use a glass mastering process to create DVDs that are compatible with all DVD players, as opposed to the DVD-R process used by duplication facilities. See also duplication facility.


Simple programs you create to access specialized information from the DVD player, such as its region code, and to perform advanced functions, such as randomly playing all tracks. You can connect most elements of a project to scripts. See also General Purpose Register Memories (GPRMs), System Parameter Register Memories (SPRMs).


Used with standard menus, shapes can be added to a menu as buttons or drop zones. In addition to their primary graphic, shapes can include the graphics required for highlights and video thumbnails. You can use those supplied with DVD Studio Pro or create your own. See also motion button, patches, standard menu creation method.


An element in a project that can contain up to 99 still images and accompanying audio. DVD Studio Pro allows you to convert a slideshow into a track so that you can add additional features to it, such as a subtitle or additional languages for the audio.

S/PDIF audio 

Sony/Philips Digital Interface. Digital audio output used by external AC-3 or DTS decoders to listen to DVD Studio Pro audio.

standard menu creation method 

In DVD Studio Pro, refers to the process of creating menus that provides the most flexibility, including the ability to use motion video for the background, motion buttons, shapes, drop zones, and audio. Standard menus can also use templates and styles. See also layered menu creation method.


An element in a project that is specific to a particular track, allowing you to create a customized version of that track. For example, you can use stories to create alternate versions of a track that skip violent content or play just the track’s highlights.


Used with standard menus, styles define how specific menu items, such as text objects, buttons, and drop zones, work in a menu. You can use those supplied by DVD Studio Pro or create your own. See also standard menu creation method, templates.


See overlay.


The DVD specification provides for up to 32 subtitle streams to be included in each track. These streams can contain plain text, similar to a closed caption function. They can also be used to provide buttons over video, allowing you to have buttons appear outside of menus. You can create the subtitles within DVD Studio Pro or import them from outside sources.

System Parameter Register Memories (SPRMs) 

DVD players contain memory registers that contain configuration information, such as languages, video configuration, and region codes, for use by DVDs while they play. Scripts in the DVD can use the SPRMs to determine which version of a track to play or whether the DVD player has the proper region code. See also General Purpose Register Memories (GPRMs).


Used with standard menus, templates can contain styles that define a menu’s background, button layout, text, and drop zones. You can use those supplied with DVD Studio Pro or create your own. See also standard menu creation method, styles.


A method of associating each frame of video in a clip with a unique, sequential unit of time. The format is hours: minutes: seconds: frames. See also drop frame timecode, non-drop frame timecode.


The element of a DVD Studio Pro project that contains the video, audio, and subtitle streams that provide the primary content of the DVD. Each project can have a combination of up to 99 tracks, stories, and slideshows.


A short video clip that plays in place of the normal direct jump from one button or still image to the next element. There are a variety of transition types supplied with DVD Studio Pro that you can use. Transitions can be configured between a menu button and its target, between slides in a slideshow, and between still image clips in a track.

variable bit rate (VBR) encoding 

A video MPEG encoding method that varies the bit rate based on the video content. Scenes with little motion use low bit rates to reduce the disc space needed, while scenes with a lot of motion use higher bit rates for greater quality. One-pass VBR encoding is faster than two-pass VBR encoding, but its quality is not quite as good and the final file size may be slightly different than you predicted. Two-pass VBR encoding makes a first pass through the video to determine its motion content, and then uses a second pass to perform the encode, with the advantage of better quality and providing a predictable file size.

VIDEO_TS folder 

One of two folders required on DVD-Video discs (the AUDIO_TS folder is the other). DVD Studio Pro creates the VIDEO_TS folder when you build your SD project. It contains all of the video, audio, subtitle, menu, and navigation files that make up your DVD-Video title.

video title set (VTS) 

The contents of a DVD are contained in one or more VTS blocks. DVD Studio Pro creates a VTS block for each track and slideshow in your project, with a maximum of 99 total. In addition to a track or slideshow, each VTS can also contain menus and scripts. You can use the VTS Editor to view and manage the VTS structure of your DVD projects.

video zone 

The area of the DVD that contains the VIDEO_TS or HVDVD_TS folders.