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In Encore CS5 Essential Training, author Chad Perkins gives an extensive overview of Encore CS5, Adobe's powerful application for authoring DVDs, Blu-ray Discs, and Flash-based video for the web. This course covers adding audio and subtitle tracks, creating image slideshows, and using Encore as a presentation tool. Also explained are the Blu-ray enhancements in CS5, and advanced techniques such as creating games and hidden content for disc menus. Exercise files are included with the course.
In this chapter, we are going to look at several technical issues that will really help you, as we begin our journey into Encore. First of all, I want to talk about some disc formats. We know about DVD, and we know about Blu- ray, which is a High Definition disc, but there are different types of DVDs, and it's good to know, as you start planning your Projects, good to know about the different variations of these types of discs. Now DVD is still the most common of the optical media out there. Most DVDs come in one of two sizes, either Single layer, which is about 4.7 GB in size, now these are typically the DVDs that you find, if you go to like Office Depot or some other kind of consumer retail outlet.
Then you'll get some DVDs maybe from Wal-Mart, or whatever. They're usually Single layer DVDs. Dual layer DVDs can actually store 8.5 GB on them, and many, if not most, of the commercial Hollywood DVDs that you get are Dual layer DVDs. Now a standard, high-quality, 90-minute movie will fit perfectly on a Single layer DVD. A Dual layer DVD is often used so you can get a longer movie and/or extra special features, interviews, outtakes, that type of thing on there as well.
Now when I say Dual layer, it's something that you can't really see from looking at the disc. It's something that happens in the disc itself. Then it's also important to know that Dual layer is not the same thing as Dual Sided, so there are some times when you get a disc, such as UHF, one of my favorite movies, if you buy the DVD of UHF, it's Dual Sided, so you could actually flip it over, and there's wide screen on one side, full screen on other side, and there's some special features on one side and another special features on the other side, because there's so much content there. So it is a Dual layer and a Dual Sided DVD.
Now a Blu-ray, as we've talked about, is the new winner in the war for high definition optical disc format, and it's able to store tons of extra content on it, and it also has some special features that we will look at in the Blu-ray chapter, such as pop-up menus, which are not available on DVDs. Now, Blu-rays also have Single and Dual layers and a Single layer Blu-ray disc has about 25 GB of storage on it and a Dual layer Blu-ray disc has about 50 GB of storage space on it, so a lot of power there.
Blu-ray hasn't really caught on as fast as DVDs have, so they are not quite as ubiquitous and also the compatibility is a little bit off, as of yet. So not everybody has a Blu-ray player, nor everybody is burning Blu-ray discs on their computers as we see with DVDs. But as of the time of this recording, all signs point to the fact that Blu-ray will become more and more popular over the next several years. So again, its good to be aware of these different disc sizes and these options as you go when you prepare your disc. If you're planning on making a two hour long movie, and you are planning on having tons of special features, then you might want get some special DVDs, either go up to Blu-ray, or get a Dual layer DVD.
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