Useful Information – Custom CD/DVD Replication & Printing


Please read the following instructions carefully. Before sending audio material, make sure it meets all the technical requirements. The audio we receive goes into the production queue and is checked by our technical department only when its turn comes. Therefore, you might be notified about any incompatibility with the required criteria even several days after placing an order.

Technical requirements of the CD / DVD discs

CD Maximum Length:
The Philips Red Book specifies that CD recordings should not exceed 74 minutes and 44 seconds. Most CD audio players support long-play discs, up to 80 minutes. However, not all players will work properly with discs longer than 78 minutes.*

DVD Maximum Capacity:

DVD-5 – 4.7 GB max
DVD-9 – 8.54 GB max
DVD-10 – 2 x 4.7 GB max

*If the optimal time of 78 minutes is exceeded, we reserve the right to refuse a complaint concerning the sound quality or proper functioning of the discs.

Content of CDs and DVDs:
The content of a CD/DVD should be delivered digitally in DDP 2.0 format with MD5 checksum or traditionally on a CD-R/DVD-R disc (2 copies).
Disc Description Protocol (DDP) is a format for specifying the content of optical discs, including CDs and DVDs. DDP is commonly used for the delivery of disc premasters for replication and must contain four parts: 1) Audio image(s) (.DAT file(s)) 2) DDP Identifier (DDPID) 3) DDP Stream descriptor (DDPMS) 4) Subcode descriptor (PQDESCR). An optional text file can also be included, which will contain the track titles and timings.
All masters sent on CD-R/DVD-R medium should be production-ready and edited exactly as expected to work in the final product.
The image on DVD-Rs should be burnt to the disc’s main sector.
DVD-R DL is an acceptable medium for DVD 9 production.
All masters must be of the best quality, free of physical damage, errors, etc. All masters should be adequately protected against possible damage during transportation, dirt, etc.
Defective masters or those that do not meet the recommended specifications may incur delays and change the process of possible complaints handling.
Replicas can be used as masters provided they are not copy-protected.

If unable to provide a DDP for CD replication, we can create a DDP 2.0 (+MD5) image from .wav, .aiff files upon the client’s special request and for an additional fee.

  • The accepted files are .wav and .aiff.
  • The files should be named in such a way that the computer browser can line them up alphabetically in the correct sequence. For instance: 01 02 03 04 05, etc. Thus, when you put your files into one folder, everybody will know the right order.
  • The names of all the files, including the main folder, should not contain diacritic characters.
  • CD-TEXT may be added to a DDP file on request. The ordering party should provide a text document that may include these elements: the author, the album title, the track title, ISRC code, UPC/EAN code. All these elements are optional; therefore, the request may only contain the first three.
  • Adding breaks or any other interference into the material should be arranged between the client and MonotypePressing.

ISO and NRG formats are also accepted (excluding DVD formats).

The client may ask for the personalized matrix name on the disc. The number of marks on a matrix cannot exceed 110 characters. Please be aware that we utilize a glass master for CD/DVD replication, and once the process has begun, the matrix name cannot be altered.

Please prepare the artwork for the CD cover, label, booklet and any other printed elements using only the templates provided by MonotypePressing.

Artwork checking:
After receiving the files, they will be checked by our graphic design team, and you will receive PDF previews for approval or be asked for corrections. Please note that we will check the artwork twice, and if it’s found to be faulty for the third time, we will proceed to charge an additional fee for every subsequent check.

In the Artwork Checking Details section you can find the comprehensive list of aspects checked by our graphic designers and those that are not within our scope of review.

  Offset CMYK print is applied directly on a disc’s surface or on a white pre-print (background).
  Additional PANTONE® colour or varnish may be also added.
Due to black paint transparency in the offset method, ultra-rich black areas in offset printing must be underlaid with CYAN 80%, MAGENTA 80%, YELLOW 80%.
We ask for the exact Pantone number(s) in case of Pantone print. The price may vary depending on the quantity and different kinds of Pantone.


Sans-serif fonts:
For positive: 4.5 point
For negative: 5 point

Serif fonts:
For positive: 5.5 point
For negative: 6 point

Please consider the following points while preparing files for printing:
Use PDF 1.3 or TIFF format; JPG, PNG, or GIF formats are not accepted
Keep the total ink amount (CMYK) up to 300% on coated paper and 260% on reverse board
Ensure a minimum ink amount of 6%; anything below won’t be visible in print
Consider ink contrast for dark elements; what is visible on the screen may not be visible in print
Remember that the image on the screen appears brighter than in print
Use letters larger than 6 points; below that size, sharpness may be compromised, especially for Thin or Light fonts
Use CMYK colour mode; if using Pantone colours, specify the numbers used
Do not embed ICC profiles
Make sure the artwork fits the template; use our provided templates or contact us for custom templates
Add 3mm bleeds around the artwork
Flatten transparency
Rasterize gradients
For hot stamping/embossing/debossing/spot UV, use vectors on a separate PDF page, marked as an additional colour or 100% K
Ensure a minimum thickness of 0.3mm for hot stamping lines
Delete the template layer, leaving only artwork and crop marks
Bitmaps should be at 300 DPI
Keep in mind that finishing processes may slightly alter colours: matte foil reduces contrast, while gloss foil intensifies dark colours

Accepted files delivery methods:
The mastered files should be sent to, or the link to the files should be pasted in the “Additional Comments” section in the order form. Alternatively, we accept production-ready CD-R/DVD-R masters, but please contact us before shipping & confirm the address with us.

The CD production has a tolerance of +/- 5%, i.e., you may receive slightly more or slightly fewer discs (but no more than 5% of the overall quantity).

Use the correct template
Ensure correct page orientation (not upside down)
Check the correct page order for booklets or properly number files
Double-check cover text for typos (file changes after digital previews confirmation might incur an additional fee for new exposure)
Ensure letters and objects (especially dots and thin lines) are large and thick enough for accurate printing
If you require precise colour representation, consider sending a print proof created using a professional, calibrated printer or including proof printing with your order (the proof will be shipped to you for colour assessment and confirmation prior to the main printing). CMYK proofs we offer are based on composite files, made according to the FOGRA 39 standard.
PANTONE colours are referenced to the PANTONE® pattern; values being compared to the proof.


What We Check:
File type (TIFF, PDF)
Colour mode (CMYK)
Design compatibility with our template (proper placement of spines, presence of bleeds)
Total ink amount (320% or 260% on uncoated paper)
Resolution of print file (minimum 300 dpi)
Suitability of hot stamping/embossing/debossing/UV printing

What We Don’t Check:
Content correctness (e.g., typos, language usage)
Page orientation on templates
Correct page order
Flattening of transparency
Hidden layers
Size of letters/fonts/graphic elements (in terms of ink flooding)
Clearness/brightness of the artwork
Presence of overprint in the artwork
Bitmap resolution embedded in the file (must be 300 dpi)
Rasterization of gradients

These checks can be done for an additional fee.

With an additional fee, we can:
Add bleeds to the artwork
Adjust the artwork to fit the template
Reduce the total ink amount
Set the page order
Convert the file to CMYK colour mode
Convert Pantone colours to CMYK if Pantone was not ordered

Please note that our file verification focuses solely on technical aspects and does not account for content-related errors. We are not responsible for content accuracy.
Covers are printed using offset or digital print techniques, and our printers apply their own ICC profiles (Fogra37 or Fogra39).