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Creating DVDs and Blu-ray discs with Vegas Pro and DVD Architect Pro

Creating DVDs and Blu-ray discs with Vegas Pro and DVD Architect Pro

 

    Encoding, Rendering, and Video Formats

    1. What is the recommended method for converting Vegas HD projects to standard-definition DVDs—recognizing that resizing often results in flicker and moiré patterns as well as loss of sharpness? And are we getting any help in future versions of Vegas Pro and DVD Architect Pro to assist us in this process?
    2. Is a Blu-ray disc burned using Sony AVC as compatible with all Blu-ray players as the Main Concept MPEG-2 option?
    3. How do I decide which video template to use? For example, 60i or 24p?
    4. When I render a movie in Vegas Movie Studio, what format should I render it in so that it is compatible with DVD Architect without having to compress it or modify it in any way?
    5. When rendering to Blu-ray from Vegas Pro 9, which is the best resolution for American HDTV: 1440x1080 or 1920x1080?
    6. Does a WMV or Sony AVC file provide good-quality for Blu-ray burning?
    7. What kind of video file have you used for DVD and then for Blu-ray disc? If it is MPEG-2, it is not going to be high-definition Blu-ray, correct?
    8. Do you render separately for DVD & Blu-ray disc, or let DVD Architect recompress the video as needed?
    9. Will DVD Architect burn to Blu-ray disc even if your material is not high definition?
    10. Does DVD Architect Pro support 3D videos or 3D movies?
    11. What is the best format for Blu-ray disc?
    12. Can you upload to Youtube directly from Vegas Pro or DVD Architect Pro? What file format is recommended?

    Sales support questions

    1. Is DVD Architect Pro available in Spanish?
    2. I have Vegas Pro 8. Will I have to purchase version 10 to get this functionality?

    Audio encoding for DVD and Blu-ray

    1. I can't seem to get the 5.1 sound to work when using DVD Architect.
    2. How do you set up an alternate sound track?
    3. What is the difference between AC3 Pro & Studio?
    4. How do you create a button to let the viewer choose between stereo .ac3 audio or 5.1 surround .ac3 audio with a movie?

    Product suggestions and feature requests

    1. Will there be an option to "fit to disc" for Vegas Pro in the future? I would use that almost every project if there was.
    2. Is Sony considering adding the ability to add a volume envelope to DVD Architect? It sure would help sometimes to have that option in that last-minute editing before burning.
    3. Will DVD Architect support JAVA menus on Blu-ray Discs?
    4. Why doesn't Sony make more themes and buttons available for DVD Architect Pro?
    5. What new features are being planned for Vegas Pro 11?
    6. Can I save a theme template from another software application?

    Interlaced and progressive video

    1. What's the difference between interlace and progressive?
    2. What are the pros and cons of using progressive vs. interlaced?
    3. Which is better from quality stand point: Interlaced or progressive?
    4. Where can we find information about how to choose between interlaced and progressive?
    5. When selecting format (interlace vs. progressive etc.) what would be the lowest working denominator to work on all televisions?

    Compress, recompress and bit rate settings

    1. Why does DVD Architect recompress to finalize the menu in a Blu-ray disc? How can recompression be avoided when burning a BD-R with a menu?
    2. When burning a DVD with a menu, how is recompression avoided to shorten burn time?
    3. I’m trying to burn a project to disc and a Message appears that says, “The Disc Image is too large to fit on to the disc. Try changing your render settings or use a lager capacity disc.” My Estimated project is 4.68GB and I'm using a DVD+R 120 min/4.7GB disc. What is my problem?
    4. With the appropriate quality, what could be the total duration of my videos on a 4.7GB DVD?
    5. If you reduce the default bit rate, will the quality suffer?
    6. Is it best to use a bit-rate calculator and let Vegas Pro render the file to fit the Disk space or to let DVD Architect render the file?
    7. Why does DVD Architect sometimes incorrectly report file sizes? (It usually says it’s too large even though it isn’t).
    8. What's the drawback of reducing the video bit rate? Is there a guideline for how much to reduce it to avoid quality loss?
    9. Please explain the Fit to Disc button in the make DVD dialog.
    10. Is there any way to know what size DVD you need to burn to?

    Workflow questions

    1. When rendering in Vegas Pro, do you render audio and video separately?
    2. Do you change from NTSC or PAL in Architect, or do you have to do anything in Vegas Movie Studio first?
    3. How is he bringing up that little window for switching software applications? That's a great shortcut.
    4. When he rendered his video and audio so he can create a menu DVD, did he render in two steps (audio, then video) or one step but with separate files for video and audio?
    5. When and how is the .ac3 file used?
    6. I'm confused about how you got both video and audio linked together since you rendered them separately. Can you explain?
    7. Is there any way of adjusting volume of the audio track in DVD architect?
    8. Is DVD Architect Pro a standalone application that I could use with any video editor?
    9. What is your recommended procedure for when you want to create both DVDs and Blu-ray discs from the same Vegas Pro project file?
    10. Does DVD Architect support dual layer burning?
    11. Can I make transitions?
    12. I’m still not sure what the advantage of adding the media to the root is. For changing buttons I usually make one button the way I want it and then copy it, right-click it, and choose Paste Button Properties from the menu. Are there any other advantages to adding the video to the root?
    13. When dragging video files up into the left-hand panel of DVD Architect (the Project Overview window) does the audio file automatically move with it?
    14. How do I create a looping DVD?
    15. If Audio & Video are rendered separately, how does dragging the video file into DVD Architect bring in the audio?
    16. I have multiple video files. How can I put them in DVD Architect Pro as one file so that they play in sequence?
    17. I noticed that DVD Architect Pro has Copy Protection properties in Project Properties and also a property called Disc Copyrighted. What is the difference?
    18. Does the properties copy protection feature actually put copy protection on the disk, or is that just for mastering?
    19. Can I burn both a 4:3 and a 16:9 version of my video to the same DVD?

    Hardware

    1. What kind of Blu-ray burner is required to burn Blu-ray?
    2. Are there any hardware limitations for this product?

    Themes, menus, backgrounds, buttons, etc.

    1. Are you able to create your own theme with your own background?
    2. Where can users find more DVD themes for their projects other than what comes with Vegas?
    3. Can I create custom buttons? If so how?
    4. Why doesn’t DVD Architect create menus that will by default automatically play ALL videos without going back to menu?
    5. Is there a quick way to apply the custom buttons to the scene selection menu?
    6. Where do you get the new themes you are working with?
    7. Can you edit scene selection buttons as you can main menu buttons?
    8. Can you create 3D menus?
    9. How would you put an introduction—say a company logo—to show before the menu starts?
    10. Can you save your menu as a custom template to use over and over again as a shell for a multi-disc set, or do you need to recreate it each time or load a prior project?
    11. How do I integrate video within my navigation buttons?
    12. Can you create custom buttons?
    13. Are there additional themes available for free or purchase from Sony or other vendors?

    Technical support related

    1. Some of the projects I render and then burn to DVD with DVD Architect Pro end up not filling the screen on all four sides. How can I prevent that?
    2. There seems to be a problem with crashing if there are too many media imports. Is there some kind of memory limit when setting up media imports?
    3. Whenever I use Tools | Burn Disc | BluRay I get the error "An error has occured during the current operation. An unexpected error has occurred." Things work fine if I render in Vegas Pro and burn in DVD Architect Pro. Am I doing something wrong? One clue is that in Vegas Pro, it shows 10x for the Blu-Ray burn and it should only be 2x.
    4. I am trying to burn a Blu-ray disk without success so far. I have checked all my settings and they appear to be in order.
    5. Sometimes when I play a DVD on a laptop it sputters. Can you provide any ideas for creating a DVD that plays consistently without pausing or sputtering?
    6. Why don't you answer when asking for support via the support desk?
    7. Why is Architect Pro 5.2 not recognizing my Pioneer Blu-ray drive? It locks up immediately.

    High-definition vs. standard-definition

    1. Can I use HD files to create a standard-definition DVD?
    2. Can Vegas Pro make a high-definition disc on a standard DVD?
    3. Don't you have to use HD assets to burn a Blu-ray disc?

    DVD vs. Blu-ray

    1. What is difference between Blu-ray disc and DVD?
    2. If I start with a standard DVD, can I upgrade to a Blu-ray disc? Will it be of reasonable quality?
    3. I tried burning a Blu-ray image to a blank DVD writable disc from the Vegas Pro timeline. It worked, but it only plays on a PS3, not on a DVD player. Why?
    4. For DVD and BD you used same video. In that case then, BD will be not be HD, right?
    5. When creating a Blu-ray disc, how does the software deal with the limitations of licensing where limited copies would be built into it with replicated disc?

    Training resources

    1. Where are training classes available?
    2. Have you, or will you ever, offer a webinar for Vegas Pro basics/getting started/timesaving tips/etc? I'm pretty sure I am missing several timesaving tricks.
    3. Do you have any 3D tips or info?

    Questions about the webinar

    1. What's the zooming software you have for this webinar?

    Encoding, Rendering, and Video Formats

    What is the recommended method for converting Vegas HD projects to standard-definition DVDs—recognizing that resizing often results in flicker and moiré patterns as well as loss of sharpness? And are we getting any help in future versions of Vegas Pro and DVD Architect Pro to assist us in this process?

    Vegas deinterlaces before scaling, so there is no flicker or moiré due to interlace introduced. We recommend to go into Project Properties and in the Video tab set Full-resolution rendering quality to Best. Also, for optimal quality use one of the DVD Architect-specific MPEG templates when rendering from Vegas.


    Is a Blu-ray disc burned using Sony AVC as compatible with all Blu-ray players as the Main Concept MPEG-2 option?

    Yes.


    How do I decide which video template to use? For example, 60i or 24p?

    The choice you make depends upon many factors. You could decide to use the template that matches the footage you’re using on the timeline. This would likely give you a better preview frame rate as you’re asking the computer and Vegas Pro to do less processing upon preview. Alternatively, you could set your properties to match what you need to deliver with your final render. This has the advantage of setting your Preview window to be more WYSIWYG.


    When I render a movie in Vegas Movie Studio, what format should I render it in so that it is compatible with DVD Architect without having to compress it or modify it in any way?

    If you’re creating a DVD, render to MPEG-2 for the video. For a Blu-ray disc, render the video as MPEG-2 or AVC (H.264). In both cases, render the audio to AC3.


    When rendering to Blu-ray from Vegas Pro 9, which is the best resolution for American HDTV: 1440x1080 or 1920x1080?

    1920x1080 is the better resolution of the two.


    Does a WMV or Sony AVC file provide good-quality for Blu-ray burning?

    You should render to either MPEG-2 or AVC (H.264) for delivery on Blu-ray disc. Either format will give you high-quality results.


    What kind of video file have you used for DVD and then for Blu-ray disc? If it is MPEG-2, it is not going to be high-definition Blu-ray, correct?

    Not exactly correct. You can use a high-definition MPEG-2 file or an AVC (H.264) file for Blu-ray. You can also use MPEG-2 for DVD, but you’re right that a standard DVD video is not high definition. You’ll want to create one MPEG-2 file for the DVD and another for the Blu-ray disc. Or, create a high-definition MPEG-2, burn your Blu-ray, and then change the project to a DVD project. You can then burn the DVD using the same high-definition file and DVD Architect will create the standard-definition version that is required for DVD burning.


    Do you render separately for DVD & Blu-ray disc, or let DVD Architect recompress the video as needed?

    You could render a high-definition version for Blu-ray and then change your project properties to DVD and let DVD Architect recompress the video for DVD. However, best practices might suggest that you render each version separately in Vegas Pro so you have more control over the process.


    Will DVD Architect burn to Blu-ray disc even if your material is not high definition?

    Yes, as long as you render your files to either MPEG-2 or AVC (H.264) file formats for video and AC3 for audio.


    Does DVD Architect Pro support 3D videos or 3D movies?

    Yes, you can create a disc that contains 3D videos in many different stereoscopic 3D modes. However, at this time DVD Architect Pro does not support 3D menus. So although your videos could be in 3D, your menus would not be.


    What is the best format for Blu-ray disc?

    Blu-ray discs require MPEG-2 or AVC (H.264) video format. Vegas Pro and Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum contain render templates that are specifically designed to render for Blu-ray burning. For maximum quality and compatibility, we recommend that you use these templates.


    Can you upload to Youtube directly from Vegas Pro or DVD Architect Pro? What file format is recommended?

    While Vegas Movie Studio HD Platinum features an Upload to YouTube option, Vegas Pro and DVD Architect Pro do not include this feature. To upload a video using Vegas Pro, first render your project and then use an Internet browser to upload it to YouTube. There are several formats that will work for uploading to YouTube which Vegas Pro can deliver. For example, Windows Media Video (*.wmv) or Sony AVC (*.mp4) are both supported for uploading to YouTube. For specific information about YouTube supported formats, please visit the YouTube help pages.


    Sales support questions

    Is DVD Architect Pro available in Spanish?

    Yes. DVD Architect Pro and Vegas Pro are available in English, Spanish, German, French and Japanese languages.


    I have Vegas Pro 8. Will I have to purchase version 10 to get this functionality?

    Much of what was discussed in the webinar may work in Vegas Pro 8, but there will certainly be some features that you won’t be able to use.


    Audio encoding for DVD and Blu-ray

    I can't seem to get the 5.1 sound to work when using DVD Architect.

    We’re not aware of any problems in this regard and we would need more information about your specific situation to find a solution. Please contact our customer service and technical support team to provide more detail.


    How do you set up an alternate sound track?

    You can add up to eight audio tracks to the DVD Architect Pro timeline for any media or compilation in your project. You can use these alternate tracks for different languages, director commentary, and anything else you want. To add a new audio track, click the Timeline tab to bring the Timeline window to the front. Click the Insert Track drop-down list and choose Insert Audio Track from the list. Once you have multiple tracks in the timeline, you can use the Properties window to construct buttons and end actions that enable the viewer to switch between those tracks.


    What is the difference between AC3 Pro & Studio?

    AC3 Pro is a customizable version of the AC3 encoder. It is the version that ships with Vegas Pro. AC3 Studio is non-customizable and ships with Vegas Movie Studio HD. The quality is identical between the two, but the Pro version gives you more flexibility when creating your files.


    How do you create a button to let the viewer choose between stereo .ac3 audio or 5.1 surround .ac3 audio with a movie?

    First, render your video file as well as both the stereo and surround audio files. Add your video clip to a menu in a DVD Architect Pro project file. Depending on what you named your audio and video files and where they were saved either the stereo or the surround audio may be imported automatically with your video clip. In any case, it will be necessary to import both. In the Project Overview window, right-click the video clip and choose Navigate Into. In the Explorer window, browse and find the additional audio file that was not originally imported and drag it into the Timeline below the audio track that was added originally. Next, right-click the menu icon in the Project Overview window and choose Navigate Into to go back to the main menu. Right-click the button in the Workspace and choose Copy. Now, right-click the menu background and choose Paste to add a second button. Finally, select the second button and in the Button Properties window, click the Action tab. Click the Set audio track drop-down list and select 2 from the list. Your second button now plays the same video as the first button, but plays the alternate audio track.
     
    An additional point to make here is that before going through the trouble of adding multiple buttons and rendering multiple files, you might consider that when you play a DVD or Blu-ray disc that uses 5.1 audio on a system that supports only stereo, the DVD or Blu-ray player automatically down-mixes the audio to stereo.


    Product suggestions and feature requests

    Will there be an option to "fit to disc" for Vegas Pro in the future? I would use that almost every project if there was.

    No announcement has been made on this question, but it is a great feature suggestion which we’ve passed on to the development team.


    Is Sony considering adding the ability to add a volume envelope to DVD Architect? It sure would help sometimes to have that option in that last-minute editing before burning.

    No announcement has been made concerning this feature, but it’s a great feature request which we’ve passed on to the development team.


    Will DVD Architect support JAVA menus on Blu-ray Discs?

    No. DVD Architect does not support this type of sophisticated Blu-ray functionality. To author a Blu-ray project utilizing JAVA menus, you’ll have to use our Blu-print authoring product.


    Why doesn't Sony make more themes and buttons available for DVD Architect Pro?

    This is certainly something we could consider doing for future versions of the software.


    What new features are being planned for Vegas Pro 11?

    We have made no announcements concerning future versions of the software.


    Can I save a theme template from another software application?

    Not that we know of.


    Interlaced and progressive video

    What's the difference between interlace and progressive?

    In interlaced video, each frame is comprised of two fields—even and odd. Think of fields as horizontal scan lines starting at the top of the screen with line one and filling the remainder of the screen with lines two, three, four, and so on. When you watch interlaced video, you never actually see the whole frame simultaneously. First you see the odd lines, then the even lines, then odd for the next frame, then even, and so on. This happens so quickly that your brain perceives a complete image. In progressive video, each frame is a complete image, just as in film. Clearly there are many more technical differences between the two and the topic warrants a lot more of an answer than I can give here.


    What are the pros and cons of using progressive vs. interlaced?

    Wow; that’s a big topic! Too big to cover here. I’ll answer by saying that if you’re intended delivery is a progressive environment, shoot progressive. If it is an interlaced environment, shoot interlaced. Progressive formats make sense for posting your videos to the Web as well as designing for delivery on DVD or Blu-ray disc to be played on modern TVs which support progressive formats. If you’re delivering for broadcast TV, you’ll want to check with the broadcaster to see whether they want progressive or interlaced. Vegas Pro can convert interlaced footage to progressive output and vice versa, so it is probably smart to choose the one that you’ll be delivering to most often and convert for your other cases.


    Which is better from quality stand point: Interlaced or progressive?

    Generally progressive footage is considered higher quality.


    Where can we find information about how to choose between interlaced and progressive?

    There are many online resources that give a good education on this topic.


    When selecting format (interlace vs. progressive etc.) what would be the lowest working denominator to work on all televisions?

    Interlaced.


    Compress, recompress and bit rate settings

    Why does DVD Architect recompress to finalize the menu in a Blu-ray disc? How can recompression be avoided when burning a BD-R with a menu?

    All of the objects that make up the menu have to be combined into a single file. This includes all of the background, button, text, and other graphical elements. This cannot be avoided.


    When burning a DVD with a menu, how is recompression avoided to shorten burn time?

    Recompression only takes place when you’ve imported media that doesn’t properly match the requirements of burning the disc. If you import MPEG-2 video for DVDs and MPEG-2 or AVC (H.264) video for Blu-ray discs as well as AC3 audio for both types, the only compression DVD Architect will have to do is for the menus or any multiple video angles.


    I’m trying to burn a project to disc and a Message appears that says, “The Disc Image is too large to fit on to the disc. Try changing your render settings or use a lager capacity disc.” My Estimated project is 4.68GB and I'm using a DVD+R 120 min/4.7GB disc. What is my problem?

    Although your estimate is coming in just under the disc capacity, it is very close and it is just an estimate. Your image may be too large. Try lowering your bit rate slightly and see if that helps.


    With the appropriate quality, what could be the total duration of my videos on a 4.7GB DVD?

    That question is virtually impossible to answer in a global sense. The answer certainly hinges upon your definition of “appropriate quality.” Only you know what that quality looks like to you. My best advice is to try several experimental renders at varying bitrates. When you find the rate which provides the minimal quality you deem appropriate, try a long render and see if it fits on the disc. If not, make it shorter and try again until you finally hone in on the magic length. But be aware that what seems “appropriate” with your test footage may not seem so with other material. And at best you’re zeroing in on an estimate of the total time you can burn to the disc. Each project may yield different results, so you just have to experiment until you’re happy that you’ve found your magic threshold.


    If you reduce the default bit rate, will the quality suffer?

    Yes. Lower bit rate always means lower quality.


    Is it best to use a bit-rate calculator and let Vegas Pro render the file to fit the Disk space or to let DVD Architect render the file?

    Both methods are valid ways to work. Personal preference is the most important consideration when choosing which best suits you.


    Why does DVD Architect sometimes incorrectly report file sizes? (It usually says it’s too large even though it isn’t).

    DVD Architect does its best to estimate what the total size of the disc image will be, but it is just an estimate. There is no way to know the actual file size until the disc is prepared.


    What's the drawback of reducing the video bit rate? Is there a guideline for how much to reduce it to avoid quality loss?

    You’ve essentially answered your own question: the lower the bit rate, the lower the video quality. Experimentation and close attention to the results are really the only way to determine what an acceptable bitrate setting is for your project.


    Please explain the Fit to Disc button in the make DVD dialog.

    When you click the Fit to Disc button, DVD Architect adjusts the bit rate of the disc as much as necessary to fit all of your material onto it. If your material already fits onto the disc, there’s no reason to use the fit to disc function. If your material is substantially over the disc size limit, you’ll probably want to consider removing some of the program material or you may end up with a bit rate that is so low it results in unacceptable quality.


    Is there any way to know what size DVD you need to burn to?

    The Disc Space Used Indicator in the lower right-hand corner of the DVD Architect Pro interface provides an estimate of the amount of space that is required to burn your DVD.


    Workflow questions

    When rendering in Vegas Pro, do you render audio and video separately?

    You certainly can, but you don’t have to. It really depends upon the format you’re rendering to and also to some extent on your delivery mechanism. For DVD and Blu-ray production, you do render both separately since both formats require AC3 or PCM file formats which are separate from the video formats they require.


    Do you change from NTSC or PAL in Architect, or do you have to do anything in Vegas Movie Studio first?

    You can make the change in either application.


    How is he bringing up that little window for switching software applications? That's a great shortcut.

    That’s a Windows shortcut. Press Alt+Enter to scroll through your open applications.


    When he rendered his video and audio so he can create a menu DVD, did he render in two steps (audio, then video) or one step but with separate files for video and audio?

    In the presentation, I talked about rendering them in two separate steps. However in Vegas Pro, you can use the Batch Render script to render both in one operation.


    When and how is the .ac3 file used?

    The AC3 file contains the project audio and is united with the video file—MPEG-2 for DVD and MPEG-2 or AVC (H.264) for Blu-ray—inside DVD Architect.


    I'm confused about how you got both video and audio linked together since you rendered them separately. Can you explain?

    If you give both the video and audio file the exact same name (other than the file extensions) and store them in the exact same folder, when you add one of them to your DVD Architect project, the software is smart enough to know it should use the other and does so automatically. You can also manually combine them on the timeline. Drag the video file to a video track and the audio file to an audio track.


    Is there any way of adjusting volume of the audio track in DVD architect?

    No, any changes to audio levels must be applied before importing the file into DVD Architect.


    Is DVD Architect Pro a standalone application that I could use with any video editor?

    Yes.


    What is your recommended procedure for when you want to create both DVDs and Blu-ray discs from the same Vegas Pro project file?

    My answer depends upon several factors, mostly relating to the complexity of the discs you intend to burn. If you do not need menu-based discs, then use the Burn Disc options under the Tools menu to burn first one and then the other. If you need a menu structure on your discs, then determine how complex the project is. If it’s fairly straight forward with not too many menus and individual pieces of media, it might be better to render two files (one for DVD and the other for Blu-ray) out of Vegas Pro. Then create the DVD Architect project for one type and after you’re done burning that disc, change the project to the other type and replace the project’s media with that which is appropriate for the new file type. If it is a complex project, perhaps you want to author and burn a Blu-ray disc, then change the DVD Architect project properties to DVD and create and burn the DVD using the same media as you did for the Blu-ray. DVD Architect will encode the high-definition files down to standard definition and will then burn the DVD.


    Does DVD Architect support dual layer burning?

    DVD Architect supports dual-layer disc burning, so you can use the 8.5 GB dual-layer DVD media for your project.


    Can I make transitions?

    DVD Architect does not have a transitions function. You could create transitional videos in Vegas Pro and use end actions to tie them in with your regular videos.


    I’m still not sure what the advantage of adding the media to the root is. For changing buttons I usually make one button the way I want it and then copy it, right-click it, and choose Paste Button Properties from the menu. Are there any other advantages to adding the video to the root?

    There’s nothing wrong with that workflow if it works for you! The advantage to adding the video to the disc root as opposed to directly to the workspace is that the link is not hard coded and thus gives you more flexibility to change it later if you need to.


    When dragging video files up into the left-hand panel of DVD Architect (the Project Overview window) does the audio file automatically move with it?

    If you’ve given the audio file the exact same name as the video file (other than the file extensions) and stored the file in the same location on your computer, then yes, DVD Architect will recognize that the two files are related and use them together.


    How do I create a looping DVD?

    There are many possible approaches and the right one to use depends upon many factors. For instance, does your disc require a menu structure, or can it be a single-movie disc? Is there more than one video on the disc and if so, does the disc have to loop through all of the videos, or just one? However, the basic technique in all cases involves proper use of the End Action property. For example, assuming that you have already added a video to your DVD Architect Pro project, double-click the video in the Project Overview window to navigate into it. Click the End Action tab in the Media Properties window. Select Link from the Command drop-down list. Next, click the current value in the Destination drop-down list. All of your project’s assets appear in the list. Choose the current video from the list. Now, when the video reaches the end, the end action causes it to link back to the same file and start playing it from the beginning.


    If Audio & Video are rendered separately, how does dragging the video file into DVD Architect bring in the audio?

    As long as the audio and video files are stored together in the same folder and share the same name (e.g., MyMovie.mpg and MyMovie.ac3) DVD Architect Pro will automatically link the audio with the video when you import the video into your project.


    I have multiple video files. How can I put them in DVD Architect Pro as one file so that they play in sequence?

    To add multiple videos to a DVD Architect Pro project as a single file, you would need to first align the video clips in a Vegas timeline and then render them into a new single file. Then you would import the rendered file into DVD Architect Pro as you would any other file. If you didn’t necessarily need the multiple video files to be pieced together as a single file, rather you just want them to play sequentially, import your video clips into a DVD Architect Pro project and then create a playlist that plays them in the order you want.


    I noticed that DVD Architect Pro has Copy Protection properties in Project Properties and also a property called Disc Copyrighted. What is the difference?

    The Copyright field in the Summary tab of the Project Properties window simply provides a place to include the copyright information about the project . It does not functionally effect the burned DVD. The Copy Protection feature sets the flags for CSS and Macrovision copy protection. This encoding/encryption must be added by the mastering or replication facility.


    Does the properties copy protection feature actually put copy protection on the disk, or is that just for mastering?

    DVD Architect Pro adds flags for CSS and Macrovision copy protection. The copy protection encryption is not applied to a DVD until after it has been sent to a replication or mastering facility.


    Can I burn both a 4:3 and a 16:9 version of my video to the same DVD?

    Yes. First render two files: a 4:3 version and a 16:9 version. To render a DVD-compliant video in Vegas Pro, choose File | Render As. In the Render As dialog box, select MainConcept MPEG-2 from the Save as Type drop down list. Then select either the DVD Architect NTSC/PAL Video Stream or the DVD Architect NTSC/PAL Widescreen Video Stream template from the Template drop down list. Add both of these to your DVD Architect Pro project separately. DVD Architect Pro will not re-encode the files as long as they have been rendered to a DVD-compliant format.


    Hardware

    What kind of Blu-ray burner is required to burn Blu-ray?

    Any properly-designed Blu-ray burner will work.


    Are there any hardware limitations for this product?

    All of the hardware system requirements are listed on the box and on the website.


    Themes, menus, backgrounds, buttons, etc.

    Are you able to create your own theme with your own background?

    Yes. First design a menu that looks exactly like you want it. Then choose File | Export Menu as Theme.


    Where can users find more DVD themes for their projects other than what comes with Vegas?

    In addition to making your own with the Export Menu as Theme function, there may be third-party theme developers who offer additional themes.


    Can I create custom buttons? If so how?

    Yes. You can create custom button artwork in an image-editing software application and then use the button’s Media properties to apply the custom artwork to the button Thumbnail and Frame.


    Why doesn’t DVD Architect create menus that will by default automatically play ALL videos without going back to menu?

    The software doesn’t do this by default because this does not describe the most-common-use scenario. But you can certainly create a menu like this in a couple of different ways. First, you could create a playlist that plays through all of the videos one after another. Or, you could set the End Action properties of each video to immediately play the next video.


    Is there a quick way to apply the custom buttons to the scene selection menu?

    Yes. Choose File | Export Menu as Theme to export your main menu as a custom theme and then apply that theme to the scene selection menu.


    Where do you get the new themes you are working with?

    The new themes are included and installed with DVD Architect Pro 5.2.


    Can you edit scene selection buttons as you can main menu buttons?

    Yes.


    Can you create 3D menus?

    You could certainly import 3D background and other graphical elements that you created in different applications, but you cannot at this time create 3D elements for your menus inside DVD Architect.


    How would you put an introduction—say a company logo—to show before the menu starts?

    Add the introduction video to the root level of the DVD or Blu-ray project. Then, select the video in the Project Overview window and click the Start Item button. This makes that video the first-play item on the disc. You could then use the Remote properties to disable remote buttons such as Next and Fast Scan, thus forcing your viewers to see the video before getting to the main menu.


    Can you save your menu as a custom template to use over and over again as a shell for a multi-disc set, or do you need to recreate it each time or load a prior project?

    You can export your menu as a custom theme that you could then apply to the other menus in your project or future projects. To do this, choose File | Export Menu as Theme.


    How do I integrate video within my navigation buttons?

    There are a couple different ways to do this, but they all revolve around proper use of button properties. For one example, first, add a video to a menu-based project to create a button on the menu. Then, select the button and click the Media tab in the Button Properties window. Under the Thumbnail Properties heading, set the Style property to Animated. Now your button contains a motion video rather than a static image from a single frame.


    Can you create custom buttons?

    Yes, you can customize text, size, position, artwork, masking, highlight, and virtually any attribute of your menu buttons. For example, to use custom button artwork that you’ve created in an image-editing application, select a button in your menu. Then, in the Button Properties window, click the Media tab and change any of the available values to begin customizing your button.


    Are there additional themes available for free or purchase from Sony or other vendors?

    Not that I am aware of. At this time Sony Creative Software does not sell additional themes.


    Technical support related

    Some of the projects I render and then burn to DVD with DVD Architect Pro end up not filling the screen on all four sides. How can I prevent that?

    I’d have to know more about your project and the footage you’re adding to it in order to answer this question specifically, but here are a couple of thoughts. The aspect ratio of widescreen standard-definition footage can be slightly different from widescreen high-definition footage. First, make sure that the aspect ratio of your DVD Architect project matches that of the media you’re adding to it. Choose File | Properties and set the Aspect Ratio property to match your footage. If you don’t want your DVD to match the aspect ratio of your footage (for instance, you’re using widescreen footage in a 4:3 DVD project), or if you’re still seeing black bars above and below or on the sides of your media, you can consider using the Crop and Adjust tools to crop the media such that it fills the entire screen. Right-click the media and choose Crop and Adjust from the menu. Then, in the Crop and Adjust window, right-click the image and choose Match Output Aspect from the menu. For still images (such as background art or pictures in a compilation) set the Stretch type property under the Background Media tab (for a background image) or the Slide tab (for an image in a compilation) to Zoom to fit.


    There seems to be a problem with crashing if there are too many media imports. Is there some kind of memory limit when setting up media imports?

    We’re not aware of any issue in this area. If you continue to see problems on your setup, contact our customer service and technical support team.


    Whenever I use Tools | Burn Disc | BluRay I get the error "An error has occured during the current operation. An unexpected error has occurred." Things work fine if I render in Vegas Pro and burn in DVD Architect Pro. Am I doing something wrong? One clue is that in Vegas Pro, it shows 10x for the Blu-Ray burn and it should only be 2x.

    We’re not aware of any issue in this area. If you continue to see problems on your setup, contact our customer service and technical support team.


    I am trying to burn a Blu-ray disk without success so far. I have checked all my settings and they appear to be in order.

    I don’t have enough information to provide an exact answer. If I were troubleshooting the issue, I’d start by making sure I was using a disc that is compatible with the Blu-ray burner. If you have access to another burner, I’d try that next. I’d also try burning at a lower speed than the maximum my player and media say they support. If none of these steps solves the issue, please contact our customer service and technical support team.


    Sometimes when I play a DVD on a laptop it sputters. Can you provide any ideas for creating a DVD that plays consistently without pausing or sputtering?

    There may be many reasons why this occurs. The causes of this problem can be as varied as the blank DVD media that you use to the physical drive in the laptop, driver issues, or software-related issues. One factor that DVD Architect can control which may affect compatibility and playback performance is the bit rate settings. When you set the bit rate of your video too high or too low, some players may not play back the video properly. If you’re running into skipping discs, try setting your bit rate to something less than or equal to 8.000 mbps. You might also try burning your discs at a slower speed than either the disc or the burner supports. If your computer can’t keep up with the burn speed, the burn process may be momentarily interrupted and this could cause stuttering on playback.


    Why don't you answer when asking for support via the support desk?

    Our normal hours of support are 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. CST, Monday through Friday. If you have attempted to contact us and did not reach a support representative, perhaps you contacted us outside of our normal business hours. To contact us through email or learn more about other support options, click here.


    Why is Architect Pro 5.2 not recognizing my Pioneer Blu-ray drive? It locks up immediately.

    We’re not aware of any specific issues related to Pioneer drives. I would recommend first to make sure you are using the most current updated version of the software. You can find all updates here. If your issue is not resolved by this suggestion, then please contact our customer service and technical support team.


    High-definition vs. standard-definition

    Can I use HD files to create a standard-definition DVD?

    Yes, DVD Architect will recompress those files to standard definition for you since the DVD specification does not support hi-definition footage.


    Can Vegas Pro make a high-definition disc on a standard DVD?

    Yes. You can burn a Blu-ray image to a DVD. However, the resulting disc would have to be played back with a Blu-ray player. It will not work in a DVD player.


    Don't you have to use HD assets to burn a Blu-ray disc?

    Not necessarily, but if you want the Blu-ray to be HD, then you do need to start with HD assets.


    DVD vs. Blu-ray

    What is difference between Blu-ray disc and DVD?

    The differences are too many to cover here, but there are many good resources online for learning about the topic. One fundamental difference is that Blu-ray discs can hold far more content than a DVD. Blu-ray players can also read and process more information more quickly than a DVD player. This enables much more sophisticated functionality on Blu-ray including higher quality audio and video and greater interactivity.


    If I start with a standard DVD, can I upgrade to a Blu-ray disc? Will it be of reasonable quality?

    You can, but the quality would certainly suffer. Any time you try to upgrade a standard-definition file to high-definition, your quality will suffer greatly.


    I tried burning a Blu-ray image to a blank DVD writable disc from the Vegas Pro timeline. It worked, but it only plays on a PS3, not on a DVD player. Why?

    As you discovered, you can burn a Blu-ray disc image to a DVD disc. However, the key is that you’ve burned a Blue-ray image, not a DVD image. Thus, you need a Blu-ray player to read that image and play the disc. Your PS3 features a Blu-ray player, so it can play the disc while your standard DVD player cannot.


    For DVD and BD you used same video. In that case then, BD will be not be HD, right?

    That depends. For example, if you start with high-definition (HD) video, you can burn that to Blu-ray disc in HD. You could then use Vegas Pro or DVD Architect Pro to burn the same video to DVD. During the prepare process for the DVD, the software converts the HD video to the standard-definition required for DVD. So in this case, the Blu-ray disc will in fact be HD.


    When creating a Blu-ray disc, how does the software deal with the limitations of licensing where limited copies would be built into it with replicated disc?

    DVD Architect Pro does not currently support copy-protection settings for Blu-ray disc burning.


    Training resources

    Where are training classes available?

    We don’t have a regular schedule of training classes. If you’re interested in setting up a personalized training session for yourself or a group, please send us a message. Various third-party training organizations may also offer training on Sony Creative Software products.


    Have you, or will you ever, offer a webinar for Vegas Pro basics/getting started/timesaving tips/etc? I'm pretty sure I am missing several timesaving tricks.

    Yes. We’ve hosted several webinars that discuss basic up to advanced editing techniques. Browse to the Training section at www.sonycreativesoftware.com/training to view archived webinars. Also, check out the many free training videos for Vegas Pro and our other products while you’re there.


    Do you have any 3D tips or info?

    That’s a big question and it would be hard to provide a simple answer in this format. A couple of resources that will help you get started include the Vegas Pro 10: New features webinar that you can find archived in the training zone at www.sonycreativesoftware.com/training and the “3D in Vegas Pro 10.0” whitepaper which you can find in the White Papers section at http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/download/whitepapers. The Vegas Pro 10 Seminar Series training DVD package contains a comprehensive step-by-step training on the new Stereoscopic 3D editing tools in Vegas Pro 10. You can also find the Seminar Series package in the training zone location linked above.


    Questions about the webinar

    What's the zooming software you have for this webinar?

    We’re using the zoom tools that are built into the Procaster interface that we use to webcast the show through the LiveStream webcasting service.







     
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