photodvd.pngA few years ago when film cameras where used we organized our family, vacation, events etc. photos in albums. I still have many albums with photographs that remind me of the past. However nowadays almost everyone uses a digital camera or even a mobile phone with a camera and saves hundreds of pictures into his computer. So why not use a digital album, e.g. a DVD, as well?! Here comes VSO's PhotoDVD. PhotoDVD is a photo slideshow software that allows you to create a dvd photo slideshow of your favorite photographs and store it into a DVD. It has a lot of great features such as adding background music and comments to your slideshow pictures. Moreover you can use many animation effects on your photos. This way you can easily play the DVD in a standalone DVD player or share it with your friends! If you were looking for a software to burn your video files into a DVD you should take a look at my ConvertXtoDVD guide .

Download PhotoDVD install it and let's begin!

This is the main window of PhotoDVD. First you must load your photos into the program. Click the Add picture button (1) to add a single photo or the Add folder button (2) to add many photographs at once.


A list of the pictures will appear, along with their names and a duration meter. There are some buttons below the list. The red X (1) allows you to delete from the list any picture you don't like. The two blue arrows (2) allow to reorganize the order they will appear on your screen. The two rotation buttons (3) allow you to rotate your photos clockwise or counterclockwise. Next to them there is the additional editting (4) button to which I will refer to later. The slider (5) resizes the view size of the photos. The preview button (6) opens a player to preview your video slideshow along with all the effects, music and comments you have added. Finally the settings button (7) opens the Settings window.


The Settings window has five tabs. In the first one you can select the language of PhotoDVD. It supports many different languages. The second tab is Imaging. Here you set the Quality of the Pan and Zoom effects (1). Medium should be fine but it always depends on your needs. Next set the Background Color you prefer (2). You can also crop your images (I'd suggest to set cutting to 0), set the sweeping motion of each picture e.g. Amplitude (again try setting this to 0 at first) or the zoom factor (3). The default values should be ok. In Timing (4) you can set the time each image will be displayed and the transition e.g. the time in seconds between photos.


In the DVD Format tab choose PAL if you are in Europe and NTSC if you are in America or Asia. You can also choose Fullscreen (4:3) or WideScreen (16:9) modes.


The Subtitles tab allows you to select the language (1) and font (2) to be used in the comments. As you can see there are 3 different tracks of subtitles. This way you can not only use 3 different languages but you can also set different comments for let's say your family and different ones for your friends! Just use your DVD player's remote control to switch between them! Nice idea presenting comments as subtitles!


The Chapters tab splits the DVD into chapters for accessing them easier. 5 minutes is the default chapter time length.


When you have finished with the settings just click the Apply and OK buttons to save them.

Now let's have a look at the Additional Editing window. In Options (1) you can set the Animation type either to Auto or to a specific animation such as Zoom In/Out, Horizontal/Vertical Pan. Animation Factor is by default set to Medium which is ok. You can also adjust Transition and Duration time for each photo. Now let's put some effects in our picture (2). You can convert your photo to black and white or sepia. You can also set a zoom point. Next let's type some comments. Select the track you want to edit and type in your comments (3). When you are done with this photo use the left/right arrows to edit the previous/next one (4).


When you are done with all your photos click the next button. In the Audio window you can load either a single audio/mp3 file to be played in the background or a whole directory of audio files (1). Of course you can reorganize the order of the music tracks (2). Just like with the subtitles there are 3 audio tracks (3). Therefore you can have different music for your family and another one for your friends. Just use the remote control to switch between them. You can use the play/stop buttons (4) to listen to your tracks and of course there is the Preview (5) button to check the whole slideshow again. When you are done with the Audio Settings click the Next button.


The output window will appear. Here you can set the Output Format (1) if you haven't done already. Choose Store source files (2) to burn your original pictures and music files to the DVD as well. In Target Device (3) choose your DVD burner or a Hard Disk Folder if you don't want to preview the compiled slideshow before burning it to a DVD disk. In Volume Label (4) set a name for your DVD. If you choose DVD as your Target Device you can select between a DVD5 and DVD9 output. If you select your Hard Disk select the Target Folder. In any case make sure you have enough free space in your disk. When you are done click the Next button.


A summary of the project will appear. Just have a look to make sure that everything is ok and click the Next button.


The compiling, encoding and burning of you DVD video slideshow will begin. Just wait and your DVD will be ready.


At any time you can save your current project through File -> Project -> Save project so as to continue editing it later or burning it again if you wish. Enjoy!

You can free download PhotoDVD to test it. If you liked this program you to remove the Evaluation Version watermark you can get a serial number for PhotoDVD .

Comments (2)

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In trying to evaluate your program, I find that I can add a music file to the slide show, but the music file doesn't play when I preview the show. smilies/angry.gif
Eleanor , January 12, 2009
Hey Eleanor. Have you also posted this question in the guides forum? I have replied there if so.
axel , January 12, 2009

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