CD & DVD Guide

Whether this is your first project or you are a media veteran, brushing up on your “best practices” for CD & DVD manufacturing can help to ensure a flawless finished product.  We have outlined common terminologies, best practices, helpful hints, and some of our most frequently asked questions. If you have additional questions, contact one of our project specialists.

Preparing Your CD Master

A “Master” is  a master disc created from your original source file recordings. All compact disc orders require a master to start the replication or duplication process.  Masters (your final work) can be delivered in a variety of forms including CD-ROM, Digital Transfer via FTP, USB Drive, etc.   All masters received are carefully tested to ensure they meet industry standard specifications.  Should your master not meet those specifications, you will be contacted immediately. World Media Group offers a variety of services including CD Mastering, CD Authoring, and Graphic Design to help prepare your project for manufacturing.

Important Notes for Preparing Your Audio Master – Includes detailed information from our Mastering Division on properly preparing your Audio CD masters

Important Notes for Preparing Your CD-ROM Master – Includes detailed information from our Mastering Division on properly preparing your CD-ROM masters

Best practice: Make sure your master sounds and is prepared exactly to your final specifications including levels and track sequencing.  Need help with this?  Take a look at our cd services.

Best Practice: Always make a backup copy of your master before submitting it to WMG.

Helpful Hint: The biggest reason that masters fail incoming inspections is because of improper handling of the disc. Just because the disc plays in your CD player, doesn’t mean that disc will make a good master. It’s important that the disc you submit as a master is in perfect condition. The best way to achieve this is to immediately place the disc into a jewel case and seal the case so that it can only be opened by the World Media Group mastering engineer who will be testing the disc.

Preparing Your DVD Master

We are currently in the process of revising our DVD master preparation instructions.  If you have an immediate question about preparing your DVD master, we recommend contacting us directly via email or at 800-400-4964.

You can view our DVD Authoring page for more information on our authoring and preparation services.

Accepted file Types

World Media Group accepts the following types of masters:  CD-R Master, PMCD, DLT, DVD, DVD-R, or you may digitally transfer files to our secure FTP server as DDP or ISO images.

Artwork and File Preparation

For information on artwork specifications and best practices for submitting artwork, visit our Graphics Guide for detailed information.

Frequently Asked CD and DVD Questions

What is the difference between replication and duplication?
Optical Disc (CD and DVD) Replication is a process that uses injection molding to manufacture a disc from optical grade polycarbonate.  Replication provides the highest quality and most exact replica of your master.  Additionally, Replication provides the lowest cost per unit in comparison.  CD and DVD Duplication describes the process of “burning” or writing information to a CD-R.  Duplication is often used for quick-turn, on-demand, and low-volume quantities.

What is your turn-a-around time for discs from day zero?
For CD and DVD replication, the average turn time for bulk disc replication is 7 business days. For packaged, replicated CDs and DVDs, the turn-around time is 12-14 business days.  Additionally we offer several quick-turn solutions that can take be completed in 24-48 hours.  All turn times are subject to project evaluation and may be adjusted based on quantity and configuration of the final order.

What is day zero?
“Day Zero” is the day at which all of your components (master, art files, payment, paperwork, etc) and/or final art approvals have been received.  Once your customer service rep has received all elements and art approvals necessary to process your order, that day is referred to as “Day Zero”.  This is the day in which your turn-time and delivery schedule will be based.

What do I need to do to place my order?
Visit our How to Order page, HERE.

What is the difference between a Audio CD and a CD-ROM?
An Audio CD is typically used for to play audio (music, speech, audiobook).  Audio CD’s are not designed to hold data.  A CD-ROM is for data use only. This can contain programs, data, or just be used as storage method. Unlike an Audio CD that can be played in any CD player or drive accepting audio CD’s, only a computer or CD-ROM equipped drive can read a CD-ROM.

How much information can a CD hold?
A CD and CD-R can hold 74 minutes of audio, or around 650MB of data.  Some CD-Rs can hold up to 80 minutes of audio. A Business Card CD can hold 50 MB of data.

What is an ISRC code?
ISRC stands for International Standard Recording Code. The codes are embedded into the subcode of a CD similar to CD-text. It is a 12 digit code that identifies sound recordings and music video recordings. ISRC codes identify particular recordings, not the name of the song. Differing  recordings, edits and remixes of the same song will each have their own code.
Here is an example code: US-PVB-09-10345

The first two letters identify the country of origin: United States. The second set of three letters identifies the owner of the ISRC. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) assigned the code PVB to World Media Group. Every ISRC administrator has their own code. The third set of two numbers identifies the year that the song was made or the code was administered. The administrator decides on the last five digits. Usually these are entered numerically to keep track of their library of codes.

What is CD Text?
CD-Text is a language written in the subcodes of CDs that certain Audio CD players will read. These types of players are typically set top players and car CD players. These players will read simple text across an LCD readout. This is used so you can see the artist and title while playing the CD.

Are CD-ROM’s and CD-R the same thing?
The answer is no.  A CD-ROM (ROM = Read Only Memory) is a type of disc typically used for data or software.  While readable by most devices, you are not able to record to this type of media.  A CD-R (R=Recordable) is a type of media that has the ability to be “burnt”  or recorded by various types of devices.

Can I play a duplicated CD-R in an audio player?
Yes.  Most common CD players will play CD-Rs.

Do you have a minimum order quantity?
For CD and DVD Duplication (Short Run) there is no minimum quantity.  For CD and DVD replication our minimum order is 500 discs.  While there are no maximum order quantities for duplication, at quantities of 500 or more, you may want to explore replication – due to the potential cost savings.