A DVD is really versatile, and is full of features. Is there a list of them? I know no authoring software, that can make use out of all of them.
Some older DVD players have problems with the DVD menus authored by more recent software.
One of those features: Continue instead of starting over, when going to DVD main or title menu and then back to the movie.
There has also always been a feature, where multiple tracks or individual chapters from different tracks can be assembled to a playlist, which will be treated like an ordinary track.
This is common for DVD's with "play all episodes" mode. Then, the playback time sometimes does continue to increase, and not reset to zero when the next episode starts. However, the playback time starts at zero for the exact same episodes, when selected from the episode selection DVD menu. Putting the same movie on the DVD twice would add some redundant video footage.
However, there is a part I noticed on a DVD that I have at home, which is mysterious: At the end of five cartoon episodes, there is the outro for each one.
Between the outros, there is no visible chapter mark at all. All are treated like being in one chapter together. But there seems to be a secret [i]transition:[/]
Between these five individual outros, I heard a little movement from the laser lens!
This movement sound can also be heard when rewinding a few seconds back over that hidden transition.
I can conclude, that this is a feature of the DVD format. No authoring software I know offers this feature, so I wonder, how movie companies make use of it.
I call it "subchapters". Slightly compareable to the formerly used CDDA indexes. Today, no CD player makes use of the CDDA Red Book index numbers.
I would be glad, if somebody can clarify it to me.
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Last edited by TechLord; 30th Sep 2017 at 15:53. Reason: Adding "subchapters" to post title.
Pure dvd authoring is a series of set commands and manipulation of a series of registers.
Programs such as dvdlabpro include an editor to write this code.
It also has the ability to construct playlists which means you can have both a 'Play All' and 'Play Selection' constructed from the same set of assets. Your transitions could be part of a 'Play All' playlist but not a 'Play Selection' one.
Various utilites IIRC ifoedit is one that can trace through a script to show you what is going on under the hood.
VobBlanker, highlight the VTS for the video in which you're interested so it appears in the bottom pane and then hit the 'Cells' button on the right. You'll see the cells listed.
Most of the features you mentioned can, indeed, be created by authoring programs, just not by free or cheap ones, most of them. I suspect Sonic Scenarist can do everything you mentioned.
The page with the most complete information about DVDs is most likely the DVD Demystified FAQ:
There's also a book.
No authoring app can do 100% of the spec because not every last bit of the spec was implemented by manufacturers.
But Scenarist and DVD Creator (Mac only app also acquired by Sonic) could do 99%. Dvd Maestro could do 90% (had an abstraction layer to make authoring easier but this added navigational & register overhead).
DVDLabPro can do 85-90%, DVD Architect pro6 and Encore could probably do 75-80%. There are others in these capability ranges.
What you are asking amounts to a ~65% level capability, so should be doable by very many apps - all but the most fundamental.
Also, plenty of higher-end CD players have supported Index feature, just not cheapo bottom-of-the-barrel current mass market types.
But that usually doesn't matter as barely any CDs make use of Index marks (though I have more than a few classical titles that do).
Last edited by Cornucopia; 30th Sep 2017 at 18:27.