A DVD is a high-density digital optical storage disc that can hold up to 4.6 GB of material. DVD authoring software is capable of creating original works, but may have specific system requirements and varying features.
A DVD – the name comes from Digital Video Disc or Digital Versatile Disk – is a high-density digital optical storage disc. It can be sold with pre-loaded material, such as commercial movies, used as a backup for computer files of a wide variety of types, or used to make an original image, sound, video, or data record, as desired by the user, given the adequate equipment. A DVD is 4.75 inches (120 mm) in diameter and can hold up to 4.6 GB (gigabytes) of material, while a CD-ROM of the same size can only hold 700 MB (megabytes). DVD Editor is the non-technical name for what professionals would call a DVD authoring program.
The name DVD editor does not do this type of software justice, because it suggests a more limited range of functions than what DVD authoring software is actually capable of, due to the author-publisher relationship in publishing, where an author creates the bulk of material and the editor only polishes it, the name DVD editor bears the same hint to this software. That is, the term DVD editor suggests that the user can only make editing-like changes to pre-existing material, such as fine-tuning and corrections, excluding the idea of putting together video clips, sound, still images and transition effects to create an original work.
DVD authoring software may have very specific system requirements. For example, it may require a multi-core processor, 64-bit support, graphics cards special for Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) acceleration, and a minimum of 2GB of Random Access Memory (RAM). The main features are the types of input formats that are imported and the types of output formats that can be exported. Of particular interest may be 16:9 widescreen and Blu-ray® capability, which are not as universally supported as some other choices. A built-in burner is pretty standard, but a built-in DVD player is less so.
The features of some DVD authoring software programs and others do not include storyboard editing, voiceover functionality, trim/split, and drag-and-drop positioning. Transitions and pan/zoom functionality are also non-standard. Tethered capture may or may not be possible, but the ability to create titles, chapters, and scenes is found in virtually every program. Part of the reason for the wide range of feature offerings is that the software ranges from freeware to professional-level applications.