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VCD, SVCD, DVD Beginners Guide
This basic article will explain why and how to make a VCD,SVCD or DVD.


Because you want to play the video on your standalone DVD Player. If you only want to play the video on your computer and/or share to your friends over the internet other video formats are better suited for that like DivX, WMV, RM, MOV. Some new standalone DVD Players supports AVI, DivX, XviD and then you don't have to convert to VCD,SVCD or DVD, it is just to burn the video directly to a CD or DVD and watch.

What format shall I choose then, VCD, SVCD or DVD?

If you want the best video quality, but note that the video quality depends on how good the source video is - Garbage in Garbage out, you should choose DVD . A DVD can hold about 2 hours video with great video quality and if you choose to lower the video quality a bit you can store several(3-6) hours on one single DVD. DVD requires a DVD Writer but remember that you can replace your old CD Rewriter because all DVD Writers can burn CDs also. Before you buy a DVD Writer be sure to check that your standalone DVD Player supports DVD-R/W or DVD+R/W in our DVD Player list.

If you want to use your current CD Writer with ordinary CD-R or CD-RW discs VCD and SVCD is your choice. With VCD you can store about 70 minutes video on 74 min CD, it means that you have to use 2 CDs for movies, with decent video quality and also with simple menus and still pictures. VCD has very good compatibility, almost all DVD Players supports it on either CD-R or CD-RW. With SVCD you can get much higher video quality, especially much more sharpen picture than VCD because of the higher resolution, but then only about 45-60 minutes/CD and far from all DVD Players supports SVCD.

How do I make a VCD, SVCD or DVD?

The basic steps are:
1. Capture the video. (only if from video,vhs,tv,cam,dv).
2. Convert the video to VCD,SVCD or DVD MPEG video.
3. Author the MPEG video which means adding menus, chapters or still pictures and then build the VCD,SVCD or DVD file structure.
4. Burn the authored video, usually directly when authoring in step.
5. Play the burnt video on your DVD Player.

2008 - 04 -14