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Things to Consider Before Exporting Your Video Project for DVD Authoring

written by: Shane Burley•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 7/4/2011

Exporting for DVD authoring is a specific process, so here are a few things to keep in mind before you do it.

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    You're Done Editing

    Once you have finished editing your digital video project you have to export it in specific ways to make it ready to put onto a DVD. Normal exporting options will often not leave you with the correct formatting that DVD authoring programs require. Here are a few things that you should do before you export your film.

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    Software Specifications

    Make sure you have clearly gone over all the requirements of the DVD authoring package you are using. Each program is slightly different, and may prefer different video file types. There is nothing worse than going through a lengthy export only to find out that the file type you chose was not supported by your authoring software.

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    Many good editing packages already have pre-set choices for DVD authoring. The standard one is MPEG-2, but you should see if there are some DVD specific formats that they have an option for. Since it is common to have your editing program and DVD authoring program in the same package it is likely they have an option to export the correct file type easily for their authoring program.

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    Audio Compression

    When you are working with audio you should set a different compression file type than the video. The AC-3 format is better than the MPEG one you would use for video, so this should be something you look for. This will end up being a smaller file and will not take up as much space on the DVD.

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    Size of Material

    Make sure you are aware of how much material you are putting on your DVD. A standard DVD can only hold 4.7 GB of information, so you may have to choose a dual layer format or a newer option such as Blu-ray. It is also true that if you have many lengthy video files you may have to choose an even smaller compression size. Check to see how much video you have, and if it is more than three hours or so you may want to look at tighter compression.

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    High Definition

    If you are editing in High Definition you should not try to put it on a standard DVD. The only way that this would be a good idea is if you are planning on burning a Blu-ray or HD DVD disc. Check your authoring program ahead of time to make sure that this is an option and what compression file types it supports for such an application.

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    Bit Rate

    The bit rate can be an important thing to think about for the video on the DVD. Keep it near 8 mbps so that it doesn’t overwhelm the player.

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    Check It Out

    The real thing you have to check is just to make sure the DVD you want can be made with the video quality you prefer. Check all the settings before the render and export and make sure that the result you are going to get is what you intended.