CD label printers in Oz

Subject: CD label printers in Oz
From: Stuart Burnfield <slb -at- FS -dot- COM -dot- AU>
Date: Tue, 17 Feb 1998 16:17:59 +0800

No thanks to a certain rude, unhelpful person, here's what I found out
about CD labels:

There are three ways to label CDs:
- silk-screen
- stick preprinted labels
- bubblejet printer

Silk-screen is more expensive, especially in quantities under 500-1000,
because there are quite high setup costs. Also the production process
means that they would have to write the data too -- so this isn't an
option for us. We want to get the labelled blanks and burn the data
on here.

Paper labels are cheap, look cheap, and must be exactly centred
otherwise the data may not be written reliably.

The bubblejet option looks to be best for us. I found a local vendor
who will take artwork in Corel Draw 6 or Photoshop format, and then
print it onto the blanks using a dedicated bubblejet printer.

Unfortunately we don't have Corel or Photoshop, but our needs are
simple (two logos and some text) and the vendor can import them to
Corel and do the layout. No doubt larger vendors could handle more

With the inket printer it's possible to overprint the blank CDs. That
means in theory we could get large stocks of CDs printed with a generic
label, then overprint 20 - 50 at a time with new release dates,
version numbers, and so on -- e.g. "CamelCaps 2000 Demo Edition".

(Our products are both fabulous and fabulously expensive, so we ship
software and manuals in low volumes. I look for production methods
with low fixed/startup costs and fast turnaround, so we can do regular
orders for new stocks in small quantities at short notice.)

There are three grades of CD: blue, green and gold. Gold has the best
recording quality, and the vendor says he's found they have the best
surface for printing the labels.

This is a slow process. It sounds like it would take about a week to
turn out 100 CDs on one printer. Again, larger vendors can no doubt
turn them out in high volumes.

Cost: approximately $A 10 per CD, including jewel case (the same
fragile autodestructing plastic cases that you get with music CDs).

We won't use the jewel cases, at least to start with. Our first CD
project is to ship demo software for customers to evaluate. We'll
get some glossy cardboard sleeves made up, with plenty of room for
installation instructions, marketing guff, and so on. That way it
can go out in a plain but sturdy express envelope. Adobe does this.

In future when we ship production software it can go in a jewel case
with proper inserts and the appropriate layers of stress wrap, because
it will be in a box with the bound manuals anyway.

Thanks to Sheila Marshall, Stephen D. Martin, Richard Frederick,
Linda K. Sherman, Sam Smith and Suzy Davis for their help.

Stuart Burnfield "Fun, fun, fun
Functional Software Pty Ltd In the sun, sun, sun. . ."
mailto:slb -at- fs -dot- com -dot- au

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