Make Your Own Label

very good
key review info
application features
  • Create covers for CDs/DVDs
  • (5 more, see all...)

Plain old-fashioned looking discs are no longer in trend. Few users are employing markers for defining the contents. The new technology injected printing capabilities in writing units and nowadays most of them have LightScribe technology, or LabelFlash.

Transforming a regular DVD into a real piece of artwork is only a matter of your imagination as the tools to do it with are abundant on the market. Provided that Nero is mostly known for its burning capabilities, it was only a matter of time until they released an application specially tailored to help creating unique CD/DVD labels, booklets, inlays or disc labels.

The newest version brings little novelty to the program and the same ease of use is available. Immediately after launching the software, you will be prompted to make your pick regarding the type of document to be created. The list of documents available is not changed and you can select any of the eleven choices (Standard, DVD Case, Multi Box, Maxi, Slim Pack, Mini-CD, Biz Card - rectangular, envelope, Custom and Full Template). Each of them comes with a set of templates you can use unhindered.

As soon as you have elected the desired cover you want to create you can start editing and embellishing it. Though the work in Nero CoverDesigner is very similar to working in an image editor, the set of tools is quite limited. The list on the left hand side consists of a selection tool, line, rectangle and ellipse drawing instruments, two text tools (artistic and text box), image inserting tool and field tool.

At the bottom of the drawing window, there are the elements of the case to be edited. You can customize each of them differently with little difficulty. Choosing a template document is always the easiest but also the less original way to reaching a pleasant result. Nevertheless, there are some advantages as Document Data window automatically pops up and all you have to do is fill in the fields with the title, year of release, artist or publisher's name, type in the name of each track if you are creating a cover for an audio disc etc.

There is no effort in this activity and if one of the available templates are not to your taste just go with the instinct and create your own designs. Adding your data is done from Data menu. Document Data provides all the fields and options for adding the desired text to the label. In the case of an audio disc you can add as many tracks as you want and append their names together with play duration. The application will calculate the entire duration of the disc automatically and add the information at the bottom of the cover. Of course, this can be removed at any time before printing.

The same customization can be made in the case of a data disc. Only this time you have to add the files directly from the computer. They will be appended to the cover together with the file extension, as well. With folders, the process functions the same way as with single files. The only trouble here is that the size of the files is not accurate. All sizes will be shown in MB only and the application does not round it up (a 3.9MB file will be displayed as having 3MB). Also, data with less than 1MB in size will appear with zero MB.

However, it seems that this happens only when creating a Standard Data CD booklet with one of the available templates. If you make your cover by yourself or with Custom template, everything is almost fine because the file size is displayed in bytes with absolutely no marking for decimals. This can be a bit confusing when making the conversion in MB or even KB for some users.

The support for LabelFlash technology makes it easy to print text even on the data side of the DVD. But it seems that there is a bit of work needed in detecting LabelFlash drives. During our testing, the application detected my Hama U3 flash pen as a FlashLabel printing device. I also tried with a regular flash pen and a SanDisk Cruzer U3 stick, but Nero CoverDesigner could not be fooled by them. Of course, there could be no selection of which side to be burned and no settings could be made.

All in all, the application has little changes compared to its earlier version. A few templates have been added and other than this, there is no addition, save for the interface which is definitely better looking.

The Good

The learning curve is smooth and the application is extremely easy to use. It can provide you with a print preview for both regular paper printing as well as for LightScribe and LabelFlash.

There are plenty of paper stocks to choose from and you can add your own customizations to the list. Configuring the application requires little effort from you.

The Bad

The size of the files and folders when creating a Standard data disc booklet with a template is not accurate. The size of the files added to the cover is expressed in bytes.

Misdetection of Hama U3 flash pen as a LabelFlash capable device.

The Truth

Nero CoverDesigner is a light solution for creating your disc covers. It has too few tools to create a professional result, but the truth is that it was never intended as a full fledged professional cover designer.

It is a fast and pretty good solution for making covers and burning both data and label sides of your DVDs. Very easy to use and learn, Nero CoverDesigner is perfect for the average user.

Proceed to Nero BackItUp, Nero BurningROM, Nero Express, Nero Home, Nero PhotoSnap, Nero PhotoSnap Viewer, Nero Recode, Nero ShowTime, Nero Vision, Nero WaveEditor, Nero StartSmart, Nero Scout

user interface 4
features 4
ease of use 5
pricing / value 5

final rating 4
Editor's review
very good