Welcome to the forums Dan,
Great that you're researching and comparing programs, before you decide on what will work for you..
First I'll briefly explain why DVD MovieFactory 7SE
became part of VS X3, which it really isn't attached to VS X3 itself. DVD MovieFactory 7 Pro was released a couple of years ago in Australia and maybe a couple other countries. At that time is was not available to North America, or at least to the US. It was never intended to be released in this part of the world. Corel basically dumped DVD MovieFactory at that point. DVD MovieFactory is a stand-alone program, it's primary function is to author and burn DVDs. It does have some limited editing capabilities. The full "Pro" version also includes other functions as well. The previous versions of VS had what we called a burn module
included with it. It was integrated into VS, and not a stand-alone program.
Corel shortly before releasing VS X3, released a product called Corel Digital Studio, which was a suite of failuresl
if you ask me, VideoStudio Express (Easy Edit in VS X3), DVD Factory 2010, Paintshop Photo Express, and WinDVD 2010. So when they released VS X3, they threw in VideoStudio Express 2010, and DVD Factory 2010. Each of those are not really integrated into the program, even though they are linked. Each can be launched as a stand-alone. They removed the former burn module from VS. This was not acceptable by the consumers. So they provided the replacement to DVD Factory 2010 of DVD MovieFactory 7SE, which is trimmed down, removing the additional features of the full version. The recommendation of most people here, is to forget about using DVD Factory 2010.
I've used VS since Ulead VS 5, and DVD MovieFactory 4 Disc Creator. Each would basically enhance the other. While you can author your DVDs in earlier versions of VS, you could still use DVD MovieFactory to do better authoring. VS is primarily for editing with limited DVD authoring. DVD MovieFactory for the last few versions has been known to do a fairly good job of quick and easy slide-shows. HOWEVER, hidden in VS is the same ability, it's called the Instant Project
Hopefully I've answered a couple of your first questions above, now I'll see about being more specific..
- Scrolling credits in Video Studio weren't too hard to figure out (although I wonder if really long credits with 50 names will be painful) but I couldn't figure out how to do it at all in MovieFactory
Not capable of producing those. You could create a scrolling title clip in VS then add it to the end of your DVD.
In VideoStudio when I tell it that it is time to burn a dvd, I'm presented with a choice between Movie Factory and DVD Factory Pro. When I choose the former, I can't seem to see the project I was working on so I always pick the latter. Am I missing something?
Not missing anything, since they are really stand-alone programs, the VSP (project file) is not automatically added to your DVD project. Also both are not capable of using VS X3's project files (VSP). DVD MovieFactory 7SE, can accept an earlier VS version such as VS X2 or 11. So in VS you could save your project as an earlier version, however if you're using filters or effects that are not available in the earlier versions, such as the New Blue PiP, they will be lost. The best work-flow is to first Create a DVD compliant MPEG-2 video file, then use that in your DVD authoring program.
- MovieFactory lets me fairly easily grab 70 jpeg images from a folder on my hard drive and pull them in as a single slide show clip and there is a checkbox which will scale the picture duration to match the soundtrack. I can't seem to figure out how to make a slide show in Video Studio except by adding each photo to the storyboard or timeline.
Well they replaced the VS Movie Wizard with VideoStudio Express. VS Express does have the option setting for fitting the photo duration to music.
- Multiple titles? I.e. "caddyshack" and "animal house" both on the same disc and the very top menu (is that called the root or is it the top?) would then take you to a main menu with play and scene selections for that title only. I can't seem to figure out how one would make multiple titles.
In your DVD authoring program each video clip is considered a Title
. In DVD MovieFactory 7SE, to create chapters for each title, you need to select the video clip (title) then select Create Chapters. You can customize the menus for each, just make sure when you're creating your menus that you select the "title" under the preview window that you want to build or create the menus for.
I'll add that these DVD authoring programs are not professional scale. They do not have the ability to create play lists
. With a play list, you can specify that after playing "Title 1, Chapter 4, go to Title 3, Chapter 20". With Corel's DVD programs you can set it to play all videos before going to a menu, or basically return to a menu once the "title" is played. If you select a chapter to play, then it will continue on playing until the end of the Title (clip) then return to a menu.
Is it possible to create full custom transitions and/or effects? In other words, do users have access to what is needed for this or am I more or less stuck with what corel produces for transitions?
Well yes and no..
You are stuck sort of with what is provided. However you can customize the majority of those.
- archiving source images. In MovieFactory there is an option which lets me archive the original jpeg images for a slideshow onto a DVD. This makes a nice way to give a slideshow DVD to someone and have it be easy for them to also make high quality prints of some of the images. I didn't see that option in DVD Factory Pro.
That's correct, DVD Factory 2010 does not have that option.
In summary, DVD Factory 2010, Video Express 2010, the Instant Project in VS X3 Full Editor, are Template driven
. Each has it's limitations, and VS X3 does too, when compared to more expensive NLEs. I've tried several other NLEs and in fact own one other. Most others I find more difficult to figure out how to do things that I've grown used to in VS. The other NLE I do have, I've found to have more than it's share of problems too. The DVD authoring aspect of that program, I think is worse than DVD Factory 2010..