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DYMO DiscPainter CD/DVD Printer Review

DYMO DiscPainter CD/DVD Printer Review

Colorful Printing

Colorful Printing

If all the CDs/DVDs that you burn end up going to friends or family, you might not need this story, but if money is at all involved, in any way, keep reading. If you are starting to put yourself out there as a videographer, even if it's pro bono, and you are starting to feel anxious or nervous about how neat and pretty you can label your burned media using just a sharpie, this article can help.

In a profession that is all about the quality of how your work looks, it can be surprising just how much the presentation of that work matters. Whether it's weddings, commercials, corporate work, live events or a presentation video, simple things such as the DVD design can go a long way. It's notable how one will judge the actual content of the work based solely on the presentation and packaging. Keeping all that in mind, if you are serious about presenting yourself professionally, then the DYMO DiscPainter is a smart move for you.

With its intuitive design application and beautiful printing capabilities, the only real question to ask yourself is if buying the DYMO DiscPainter is cost-effective for you.

Setup

The first thought that popped into my mind when I took the DYMO DiscPainter out of the box was just how convenient the size was. At just 10 1/2 inches long by 5 1/2 inches wide, the DYMO doesn't take up much room. Through all the testing and examination, I kept going back to this one nice essential feature as one of its high points. It can really make a difference for those who have a crowded workspace.

Along with the disc burner, the DYMO also came with several inkjet-printable burnable CDs, two ink cartridges, an install disc, USB cable and power cord. Setup was a cinch. Just plug in power, and connect the USB from the printer to your computer. Installation was a bit rocky. Several attempts at installation gave me an error message that I couldn't shake. My first installation attempt was on Apple's new operating system, Leopard; my second was on Tiger. Both had the same error message, but I ended up installing the printer manually on Tiger, which fixed the problem. Once I'd overcome that road bump, it was time to jump into some design work.

Creation or ...

The Discus for DYMO design application makes creation easy. You can choose from several disc brand templates to ensure your design will fit the disc you are working on. In this case, I was using the homegrown DYMO disc that came with the printer. Getting around the application was pretty easy, and I never had to refer to any manuals to figure out what I wanted to do. DYMO definitely receives high marks for its easy-to-use intuitive interface.

To help you create your disc design, Discus for DYMO has tabs for Paint, Symbol, Grid, Canvas, Photo and Text, to give you complete creative control. For example, the Paint tab is like a mini-Photoshop, with basic Photoshop tools like brush stroke, spray can, stamp tool and shapes.

The Photo tab allows you to import pictures already stored on your computer and manipulate them in several ways, such as crop, color, frame, add shadows and much more. The Photo tab also has a collage effect that allows you get even more creative with your pictures, allowing a unique look in a professional way.

I printed my first disc with a template provided by the Discus for DYMO application. This was pretty straightforward: just click on the Canvas tab and choose the design you like. You can also manipulate the given template in a myriad of ways. Add your own photo, change the design with Paint or give it titles with the Text tab.

My second design used personal stock photos. I spent about 45 minutes playing with and changing them within the Discus for DYMO application. It was fun and easy, and I was able to create a CD design that I was happy with. The software also allows you to design a jewel case insert using the same tools.

The Italian Print Job

Quiet, quick and professional - just what I was hoping for. It took about a minute and thirty seconds for the DYMO DiscPainter set on 600dpi to work its magic, and the end result was very impressive. The print quality is very good, and it definitely has high professional quality. When I set the printer to print at 1200dpi, I was truly impressed.

The DYMO DiscPainter uses RadialPrint technology that allows the DVD/CD disc to be printed as it spins. This is how the DiscPrinter can produce such stunning images so quickly. It prints your design to the outermost edges of the DVD/CD disc, giving it a very professional and complete look.

The Discus for DYMO application comes with detailed settings to ensure your print is of the highest quality. For example, you can adjust the ink density to match the type of CD/DVD surface. You can choose from matte, glossy or color. The software can work in conjunction with other applications, such as Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and many others. This is great for allowing your creative spark to truly fly.

Conclusion

The only thing to really consider about the DYMO DiscPrinter is whether the price is justified for your use. If you are doing business where a CD/DVD design plays a role, then the answer is probably yes. Despite the software installation problems we encountered, the DiscPainter performs very well and is a great solution for anyone looking to make CDs and DVDs look professional.

TECH SPECS

Dimensions: 4.33" H x 10.62" L x 5.71" W
Connectivity: USB 2.0
Power: 100-240V; 50/60Hz; external power adapter
Print Quality: 1200dpi
Print Settings: Fast, normal, best
Inkjet Density: 9 settings
OS Compatibility: Mac OS X v10.3 and above; Windows XP and Vista
Software Included: Discus for DYMO disc cover design application

Strengths

  • High-quality 1200dpi printing.
  • Small size.
  • Easy setup and intuitive design application.

Weaknesses

  • Software installation encountered several errors

SUMMARY

The DYMO DiscPainter is a small, easy-to-use CD/DVD design printer that produces high-quality prints. It is clearly superior to the peel-away labels and adhesive covers traditionally used for CD/DVD designs. Just make sure the $280 price tag is worth it

Jay Alexander is a professional videographer and commercial video producer.

DYMO
44 Commerce Road
Stamford, CT 06902-4561
www.dymo.com

$280

Tags:  May 2008
Jay
Alexander
Thu, 05/01/2008 - 12:00am