DVD Studio Pro: Adding Sound To a Menu

DVD studio pro is one of the most popular video editing packages available for Apple computers. This is a very powerful application that makes video editing and DVD authoring much easier. One of the amazing things about this piece of software is that it has a very powerful menu creator and designer.

Adding sound or music to a menu is very easy and will instantly make your DVD come alive. By adding sound to a menu you can make it much more interesting to use. By using this technique you can create menus like the ones that you would find on blockbuster movie DVDs. It's possible to use music from any source including Dolby Digital AC-3 files to provide a surround sound experience for your menu.

Step 1: Preparing Audio

The first step is to prepare your audio so that it's ready to be imported. The easiest way to do this is to save your audio file as a AIFF format file. This is a high quality sound file that is uncompressed. It is possible to use compressed formats such as AAC and MP3 but these are automatically converted. If possible, save in AIFF format to make this step easier.

If you want to use surround sound then you will need to have a Dolby Digital AC-3 format file. Encoding these files is possible using Compressor 2 which is included with Final Cut Studio.

Step 2: Preparing Menu

Click the Inspector tab on the toolbar to open it. This will display a list of menus in your project. Click the one that you want to add the music to.

Step 3: Importing Music

Click on the Assets tab and select "Import" this will then have a list of the assets for the menu. Select the Import button and navigate to your file. Once the file is added it will appear on the assets list.

Now click on the audio and drag it from the Assets tab onto the general tab. There should be a list called audio which will normally be empty. The file will then appear on the list. If there are any mistakes with it then you can highlight the file and press the minus button to remove it.

Step 4: Previewing Menu

Hold down control and click on the menu to make a sub menu appear. In this list you should click Simulate Menu. This will allow you to preview the menu with the music playing in the background. If you don't hear any music then first check your speakers and then inspect the audio file that you added.

Once you have finished this just close the simulator. Your menu is now ready to be included on a DVD.

Step 5: Further Steps

By default DVD Studio Pro will automatically loop your audio on menus. This means that the music will be played over and over while the menu is left on screen. It is possible to change this by selecting what happens on the general tab. Adjusting the loop point and what happens at the end will affect the music and the menu.

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