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How to get Nero to make Lightscribe labels! [Tutorial]

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Hey all, I haven't seen a thread for this yet and I just installed my Lightscribe (LS) drive today and...........0mfg0dz0rz~!!!!!one11 I literally had NO PROBLEMS AT ALL. (Maybe there isn't a thread because it was SO easy...but hey, this is for the newbs :)

This was also written because I was going to take the easy way out and just use HP's labeling software but they force you to install at LEAST one of their bundled BS programs to get to the real nitty gritty and that really set me off.

This is a walkthru from the very beginning of the process for the dvd640i internal drive (and probably any other future LS internal models):

- First you have to physically put the drive in your computer. This is really easier than anyone might think and there are a ton of tutorials out there on how to do so (including a Flash animated video on a disc that comes with your drive.) When you get to the jumper pins, you can most often leave them on the shipped default: cable select. If you run into any snags here is a link to a good tutorial:

- Next, obviously, you are going to have to make sure you have Nero installed on your drive. It is important that you have Nero v6 as this is the latest version and the only one with LS labeling support. To check your Nero version; open your program, get into one of the actual drag and drop burning menus, and go to 'Help' -> 'About Nero Burning ROM.'

If you are using Nero v6 but not up to Nero, go to this link to get your free product update:

NOTE: Now technically you can get away with using NO LESS THAN Nero v6.6.0.8 but the v6.6.0.16 fixed a few bugs that may cause you to burn coasters...its worth the time invested.

-Now you are almost all set to go! You could actually start burning CDs and DVDs at this point in time!! However, you shelled out the extra money for that cool Lightscribe feature so lets set it up! All you need now is a program that is going to tell Windows and Nero that isn't just any ol' CD/DVD burner chillin' in your computer.

- This program is called the 'Lightscribe Host Software' and you can get it here:

- Unzip that and run it and it should do all the hard work for you! Congratulations!! You now have the capability to make LS discs in Nero!!

How do I actually make that label though?

- Easy cheezy! Just open the Nero SmartStart menu and move your cursor over to 'Extras' (the button to the far top-right). You may need a reboot, but one of the options should be 'Print Lightscribe Label.' Click on that and you will be looking at a very simplified label maker.

- If you don't see that right away, you can also go to 'Extras' -> 'Make Label Or Cover' which will then allow you to choose to make a LS disc. This is actually the preferred way to open a new disc design if you want to use alot of graphics and images to your disc.

- When you are happy with the look of your project go to 'File' -> 'Lightscribe Print Preview' so you can make sure you don't have anything hanging over the edges.

- When you are sure everything is going to line up go to 'File' -> 'Print Lightscribe Label.'

- This next part is IMPORTANT. I 'screwed up' my first disc here. There will be quality settings at the top of the prompt you are looking at. Just go ahead and set it at BEST.

My first burn was at medium quality and the picture looked a little washed out, light, and blurry. It took ~25 mins to print. I did an identical disc at Best and it looked much better, and only took 10 mins longer ~35 mins.

So thats it. This is the first guide I have ever written so feel free to point out any misleading info or general confusing statements that I may have made. I feel better knowing that I have donated at least something to this great community. I hope you all enjoy!

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 09 Sep 2005 @ 0:29
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A couple of extra things I wanted to mention outside of the tutorial:

It is rumored (and hoped) that speed increases for printing LS discs will increase through Firmware updates rather than hardware upgrades. Anyone have any confirmed info about that?

Also I am curious as to whether the 'Lightscribe Host Software' that I mention is only for Nero or if that is a more generic release that will work with many different LS printing apps. I understood it to be almost like a software-driver that told Nero how to work the burner.

Update: I just tried the bundled LS label creation software: SureThing Labeler 4 SE. It is a piece of crap. If any of you have ever attempted to make a copy of a CD/DVD, right down to the CD/DVD art, you know important things like the artist or disc title always get cut off; be it on the outer edges or the center rings.

Well, this program draws a little bounding box perfectly around the CD canvas and does not allow your image to be any bigger than that box. Essentially if you need to stretch your image out just a little bit more to get the artist name or any other useful graphic off of the central rings, then you are S.O.L. If nothing else I would use this program for text to a CD/DVD and NOTHING MORE! :rolleyes:
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 09 Sep 2005 @ 1:10
Thank you for your very helpful guide. I'd never have figured it out on my own. I tried Surething CD Labeler and you're right - the software is useless. Nero's Cover Designer works much better.

I followed your instructions to a T, but whenever I flip the CD over (label side down) and try to print preview or print the label I've designed through Nero Express, it says there is no Lightscribe disc in my drive, even though I've chosen the correct drive (BENQ DVD DD DW1625).

I'm using Verbatim Lightscribe CD-Rs. Which brand do you use?

Any idea why it's not working for me?

Thanks for your help!
Hmm, quite odd. I am going to pick your brain a bit.

What kind of burner do you have? (Manuf. & model number)

Have you tried getting the latest firmware update for the drive? This is still a new technology so not all of the bugs are out yet.

How much did you pay for the drive? Oftentimes with technology you get what you pay for.

Will the device still burn CD/DVD data? This will let you know if it is just the LS feature or the entire drive that is messed up.

Even though Surething CD labeler sucks, will that print a LS label?

Answer/try those things out and if none work we can see where to go from there.

I gave my drive specifics in my original post. The first thing I did was give it the latest firmware update. I paid $70 for it from NewEgg. It reads and burns CD/DVD data just fine. SureThing won't print the label, either - it gives me the same error that there isn't a LightScribe disc in the drive.
#6 you have tried pretty much everything already. I didn't know that HP had licenced their technology out to other manufacturers (like Benq). My personal LS model is the hp640i.

I also use the Verbatim CDR and DVD+R. I doubt the problem lies in the discs.

I have read other forums about how people have installed these drives, had them not work, exchanged them, and with no extra configuration the new drive 'magically' works.

This leads me to believe that there could still be some bugs with this technology.

Just for the hell of it, try reinstalling the original firmware for the device. It most likely came on CD with the unit. Other than that I might be out of ideas. Hopefully someone else will stick their head in here :)
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