LightScribe Basics – How to LightScribe

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Or read the text…


How to LightScribe a CD or DVD

In order to use LightScribe to burn a label you must have three things, these are the essentials you need:


1:  A LightScribe Enabled DVD Drive

2:  LightScribe Discs (DVD or CD)

3:  LightScribe Software (Both System and Labeling)



A LightScribe Drive

I’m sorry to say but to burn LightScribe labels an ordinary DVD writer will NOT 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.

NB: You can buy Blu-Ray LightScribe drives but the LightScribe Media for these are VERY difficult to obtain so I will not mention them further… I just wanted you to be aware they are available…

LightScribe Drive Logo Locations


Laptop or Notebook

Slimline drives often do 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.

The LightScribe Laptop DriveSensor

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 Media

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?

Unsurprising the answer to this question is the same – Yes you do…

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

.LightScribe Media

LightScribe Colour Discs

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

.LightScribe Colour


Coloured LightScribe Labels

That’s the same thing, isn’t it? – Not quite, if only…

LightScribe colour discs were invented to satisfy the desire from LightScribe users for LightScribe labels to be in FULL colour – 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 coloured backgrounds onto which your label image is burned resulting in your LightScribe labeled disc. Apart from the fact you can’t have full colour printing with LightScribe labeling, you do have a choice of coloured backgrounds and are able to use any of you favourite 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.

Verbatim Update:

Since it has become more difficult to get Verbatim discs, If you can’t get them, try Philips or Memorex – Both brands I use now…


LightScribe Software:

Free LightScribe Labeling Software

LightScribe 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 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 – Dream on…


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 cannot use the drive to burn LightScribe labels..

That’s where the System software comes in… You must have this installed before you can do any labeling.


It does not matter if you use Premium LightScribe Software or Free LightScribe Software you must install the LightScribe System Software before any labeling software will work.

So before we go through the various options you have with the labeling software let’s make sure you have the essential System Software – Click here to get it >> LightScribe System Software


FREE LightScribe Software

LightScribe (HP) have created two labeling programs that you can download and use for free. They are:

1: LightScribe Simple Labeler (Windows and Mac)

2: LightScribe Template Labeler (Windows only)

Go to these pages below to download them for either Windows or Mac.


Free LightScribe Software for Mac

LightScribe Simple Labeler


Free LightScribe Software for Windows

For LightScribe Simple Labeler

and LightScribe Template Labeler


Premium LightScribe Software

For most people the free LightScribe Software is just not good enough to give you the creative control we all want over the design and production of our LightScribe labels.

So to that end I have put together my solution to this problem: The LightScribe Toolbox Premium.

This is the only complete LightScribe Software solution available anywhere.

For a closer look click here

The LightScribe Toolbox Software Contents.

The LightScribe Toolbox Premium

It contains Easy to Use 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 your perfect LightScribe project.

>>  LightScribe Toolbox Premium  <<<

No more LightScribe 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
Further Information

LightScribe Software

LightScribe Hardware

LightScribe Media