Lightscribe FAQs

Frequently asked questions

Lightscribe FAQs


Read below for answer to your frequently asked questions regarding LightScribe.

What is LightScribe?

LightScribe is a direct disc labeling technology that burns text and graphics onto the surface of a CD or DVD using the disc drive's laser and a specially coated LightScribe disc. (It's a safe, nontoxic chemical reaction of the LightScribe disc being "etched" by the laser.) A LightScribe disc drive burns data and creates labels using the same device.

How does LightScribe work?

Using laser technology, LightScribe's specially coated discs chemically change when a laser strikes the label side, producing titles and graphics created using LightScribe software.

What is the history of LightScribe?

LightScribe is a registered trademark of the Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. LightScribe was conceived by an HP engineer in Corvallis, Oregon, and brought to market through the joint design efforts of HP's imaging and optical storage divisions.

What pieces do I need to make LightScribe work?

To take advantage of LightScribe technology, you'll need a LightScribe-enabled disc drive, LightScribe-enabled discs, and supporting software.

What types of labels can I burn onto a LightScribe-enabled disc?

You can import your own digital photos or images or use LightScribe-enabled software, which comes with a variety of backgrounds. Available background types are Title, Content, and Full, which refer to how much radial space the label will cover. You can also choose circular or straight text.

What if I need to make a label but don't have much time?

Scribe time can be reduced by switching to a faster scribe mode. Instead of Best (which takes the longest), use Normal or Draft (which are quickest, but produce lighter visuals). You can also etch less content on your label by using either the Title Only or Title & Contents label option. And because LightScribe burns in concentric rings, using circular text instead of straight text will also speed up your scribe time.

Can I use other computer applications while LightScribe is working?

Yes. As with most software, you can work on other tasks while LightScribe is in action.

Can I rewrite a LightScribe label the way some CDs and DVDs can be rewritten?

No. Once burned, a LightScribe label is final. The software's preview screen lets you see what your label will look like before it is burned. While you can't erase text or graphics from your label, you can easily add more content to a label that is already burned.

Can I add to a LightScribe label I've already burned?

Yes. If you decide to add more content, you can correctly align it with already existing titles and images.

What happens if I forget to flip the disc before burning the label side?

LightScribe recognizes whether the appropriate disc side—label or data—is presented for burning. The disc will be ejected and an error message will appear.

What will happen if I try to burn a label onto a non-LightScribe disc?

No image/label will be burned if it is not a LightScribe disc.

How do LightScribe discs differ from traditional CDs and DVDs?

LightScribe media is specially coated to chemically react when a laser beam is applied to it, thus creating labels. The chemical reaction is nontoxic and does not produce a chemical smell.

What colors does LightScribe print in?

Currently, you can print LightScribe labels in black with grayscale.

Does LightScribe work on both PCs and Macs?

LightScribe is compatible with PCs using Windows 2000 and XP. To use LightScribe with a Mac, you'll need Mac OS X 10.3, a LaCie DVD-RW external double layer drive and a DVD-RW internal drive.