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NTSC 16 X 9 Video Menu graphics:

When authoring for 16 X 9 SD images or downconverted HD, you will want to design using the "NTSC DV Widescreen, 720 X 480 (with guides)" preset in Photoshop, which gives you a 16:9 rectangle to work in, including guides for title safety.  Also, it is recommended you keep any buttons or text in the center of the screen, so they will display in "Pan & Scan" mode on 4:3 monitors.  Temporarily change the canvas size to 540 X 480 to see how your design looks in 4:3.  To check if you are within the proper title safe area after designing for 4:3, temporarily change the canvas size to 430 X 480, and if any necessary information is cut off, reset and adjust accordingly.  Once your design is finalized, be sure to reset to the original canvas size.

(Button Highlights)  Sub-pictures must exactly match the underlying artwork of a menu screen.  They are composed of only four colors: Black, red, blue, and white, all of which are 100% color values and therefore heavily aliased.  It is critical that the sub-picture have exactly the same screen dimensions and placement as the menu screen. For still menus, the sub-picture size is 720 X 480 pixels at 72 dpi.  You must also send the RGB Values for the final sub-picture colors.  This will indicate the color you want for the highlight to the DVD Author. There are a few other general things to consider when preparing graphics for television monitors which will ensure your screens end up looking as you intend.
  • Design menus using NTSC colors. There is a filter in Photoshop that will convert a standard RGB palette to NTSC safe colors.
  • Avoid using thin horizontal lines or serif fonts smaller than about 24 points. They cause problems on television screens. If using text as a button, set anti-aliasing to “Crisp”, if possible.
  • Use a title safe grid when creating your menu compositions.  This is included in the Photoshop preset.
Finally, remember that your designs are primarily functional and intended to make navigation easy and obvious. A cluttered screen with obscure icons or small text can result in user frustration and product alienation
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DVD Authoring in New York City
Copyright 2002 - 2012 TOBIN PRODUCTIONS Incorporated

For the highest quality DVD Authoring we use the Sonic Scenarist Authoring Program, "The Gold Standard" used for Hollywood feature films.

Our experienced compressionist will determine the compression strategy that will yield the best results based on the source video and the project requirements, for the ultimate in DVD Authoring

Our DVD Authoring studio is capable of the simplest to the most complex interactive projects.

We can provide DVD Authoring with motion menus, multiple angles, multiple audio tracks, subtitles, surround sound,

and 16 x 9 wide screen.

Need parental control or copy protection?

RipGuard®, CopyBlock®, ACP® (formerly Macrovision), CSS encryption, Region Coding? No Problem!

NTSC 4 X 3 Video Menu graphics: 
To ensure your image will be the right size and resolution, select the “NTSC DV 720 X 480 (with guides)” preset in Photoshop when creating a new file. If this preset is unavailable, use a starting canvas size of 720 X 540 pixels at 72 dpi and design to your satisfaction. 

Before exporting, re-size the image to 720 X 480, as the pixel shape will change from square (used on computer monitors) to rectangular for television monitors.  Failure to do so will result in the image looking “stretched” when viewed on a standard TV monitor. Export the file to TIFF format with layers, which allows the DVD Author to effect changes if necessary.