If you have music, video, data or other valuable digital file in your hard drive that you would like to share or sell, one of the most practical things you can do is to burn it on a CD or DVD and create a nice cover and label for it.
The least costly way to do this is to design your own cover and label on a suitable graphic program such as Photoshop or even the free GIMP software and print them using peel and stick CD labels.
To create the CD cover or jewel case front title cover insert, you need to create a new project with the following dimensions: 1423 pixels X 1411 pixels. For a CD disc label you need to create a new project with these dimensions: 1394 pixels X 1394 pixels.
Creating a CD cover is relatively fun and easy even if you have a little designing background. But creating the CD label is an entirely different matter.
First of all, you need to create a perfect circle inside the 1394 pixel X 1394 pixel canvas to put your artwork on. You also need to cut out the areas outside of this circle so you do not print on the entire canvas and thus save on precious printer’s ink when you finally print it. Centering texts and images within the circle could also prove difficult.
But the greatest difficulty comes during the printing and labeling process using the peel and stick CD label sticker. If this is your first time to do it, expect to have off centered labels or labels with bubbles or creases on your CDs.
An off centered label creates an unbalanced disc which makes disc reading and writing slow. It could also destroy your CD drive. Unfortunately some CD label sticker makers use adhesives that melt on a certain temperature that could reduce your drive into a gooey wreck. To prevent the latter from happening use only the brand or the media that your printer’s manufacturer recommends.
Now don’t let these things discourage you. With constant practice and tinkering with your graphics program, you’d soon be on your way to creating your own art pieces on CDs using this method.
But what if you want to create more professional-looking CD products and more easily? You can buy a printer with a CD Tray. A printer with a CD tray often cost more than a printer without it.
If you really need to produce good CD products, it should be worth your investment. Incidentally, a printer equipped with CD tray often comes with a software that eradicates the hassle of cutting out the areas outside the disc design, and most importantly, the need of using the problematic peel and stick CD label stickers since printable CD-Rs are the printable media used with these printers.