How To LightScribe

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 How To Use LightScribe

In order to use LightScribe to burn a label you must have three things:


  1. A LightScribe Enabled DVD drive
  2. LightScribe Discs
  3. LightScribe Software (System and Labeling)


1: A LightScribe DVD/Blu-ray Drive

To create LightScribe labels no ordinary DVD writer will do…

You must have a LightScribe Enabled DVD Writer. HP and Compaq install these as standard( well they used to but no longer…) as for other systems you will need to add one to your existing PC/Notebook using an after market Internal drive or External USB drive.  If you are unsure if you have an existing LightScribe Drive look for the LightScribe Logo on the front of the drive.


How to Identify a LightScribe DVD Drive

Laptop or Notebook

Slimline drives may not have enough space for a LightScribe logo on the drive tray cover, but a LightScribe logo sticker should be affixed to all LightScribe enabled notebooks.

To make sure, the presence of the disc encoder sensor can verify that a drive is LightScribe enabled. Looking straight down on the spindle after the drive tray is opened, then look for presence of a LightScribe disc encoder sensor as an indicator of LightScribe capability.

.LightScribe Laptop Drive Sensor



Buying a LightScribe DVD Drive

If you find you need a LightScribe Drive, here are my thoughts on what to buy and where…
Buy a LightScribe DVD Drive


2: LightScribe Discs (CDs & DVDs)

So once again we are faced with a similar question to the one we had when looking at LightScribe Drives, namely: Do you need special LightScribe media for LightScribe labeling?

You won’t be surprised to learn the answer is the same – Yes you do 🙂

The great news is that LightScribe media comes in all the same ‘flavors’ as conventional DVDs and CDs.


Verbatim Lightscribe Discs


LightScribe Color Discs

LightScribe discs come in the original GOLD and also five additional colors


Lightscribe Color Discs


Colored LightScribe Labels

That’s the same thing, isn’t it? – Not quite Mr President… 🙂

LightScribe color discs were invented to satisfy the desire from LightScribe users for LightScribe labels to be in FULL color – So were these discs the answer – NO…

You still get an image that is ‘greyscale‘ or should I say:

  • Bluescale
  • Orangescale
  • Redscale
  • Greenscale
  • Yellowscale

What you have is a choice of 6 colored backgrounds onto which your label image is burned resulting in your LightScribe labeled disc. Apart from the fact you can’t have full color printing with LightScribe labeling, you do have a choice of colored backgrounds and are able to use any of you favorite disc types.


Verbatim LightScribe Discs

The use of Verbatim LightScribe Media images has not been coincidental. I have used LightScribe DVD+R and DVD-R as well as LightScribe CD-R from most of the LightScribe Media manufacturers and time and again I come back to Verbatim LightScribe discs. It is for this reason I always recommend Verbatim LightScribe cd-r, dvd-r and dvd+r when asked.

Buying LightScribe Discs

Since it has become more difficult to get Verbatim discs, try Philips or Memorex – Both brands I use now.

So if you need some more LightScribe discs? Here’s what I do now:
Buy LightScribe CDs and DVDs


3: LightScribe Software

A: System Software and B: Labeling Software

System Software

This comes as a big surprise to most people when they first decide to use LightScribe as a labeling solution. The need for LightScribe system software that specifically allows their new LightScribe drive to communicate with their operating system.

Since way back Windows and Mac OS have let us just replace our DVD drives and there you have it, the computer recognizes the drive and lets us use it ‘out of the box’ – True Plug n’ Play technology…

So it is understandable that nobody these days expects otherwise. You fit your new LightScribe drive and you expect it to work – Right… If only… 🙂

Well in all fairness it does, at least all the ‘normal’ DVD writer functions work. You can play CD/DVD’s you can record audio, data, video etc (burning software permitting) but you can not use the drive to burn LightScribe labels..

that is where the System software comes in… You need this installed before you can do any labeling.

Fortunately you can download it free right here


Labeling Software

With the System Software there were no decisions to make, no choice between free or paid for.

That however is not the case with the LightScribe Labeling Software. There are two options:

Do you want to stick with the free LightScribe label software or do you want the flexibility and advanced features that come with the LightScribe Software you can buy?

Let us take a look at the two free LightScribe labeling software options…


Free LightScribe Software

The LightScribe Simple Labeler allows you to add text to very simple backgrounds, it is easy to use but very limited in its use.

The LightScribe Template Labeler (Windows Only) is a little more sophisticated. The process is the same, but with the addition of the ability to add images in predefined places within templates.


Premium LightScribe Software

There are a number of LightScribe labeling software producers and they each do a good job in giving you more creative control over the design and labeling process.

So with the few to choose from – is there one I would recommend?

Well unsurprisingly I recommend the LightScribe software package I have created, which is available here on this website, The LightScribe Toolbox Premium. The reason (apart from it’s my software package…) is that it is the only complete LightScribe Software solution available anywhere.


LightScribe Toolbox Premium Contents.


It contains great LightScribe labeling software, software that will allow you any degree of flexibility in design you could wish for, but also ALL the associated software you could ever need to create the perfect LightScribe project…

No more software to buy ever.


In Conclusion

I hope this brief run through of all you need to create your own fantastic LightScribe labels has been helpful. Remember if you have problems my other support sections will guide you through the common problems (and their solutions…) encountered when setting up a LightScribe system

With this in mind I wish you great success with your LightScribe labeling. Enjoy creating stunning labels, amaze your friends and family who have yet to be introduced to the advantages of LightScribe labeling and most of all…

Have fun…

Steve Nelson


Additional Support Sections

LightScribe Support Home Page

Media Support

Software Support

Hardware Support

LightScribe Video Tutorials