Los Angeles Recording Studio serving San Fernando Valley, Orange County, Riverside areas of Southern California and artists online and worldwide

CD Replication

CD Replication

In Fidelity Recordings does not provide CD replication service. However, many of our clients have asked about the process over the years so we decided to provide some basic background to assist people when they go looking for a place to get CD copies made.

What follows is a list of some of the choices available to you, a clarification of the difference between “duplication” and “replication,” and a “translation” of the printing and artwork terms you’ll see used. If you don’t already know this stuff, we guarantee it’ll make shopping around much easier and quicker. Best of luck and let us know if you have other questions.

DUPLICATION: How are CD copies made?

There are two distinct process for making copies of your CD. The first method, usually referred to as CD-R duplication is essentially the same as what is commonly called burning a cd. The difference here is that companies that duplicate CDs professionally can do large quantities in a short time frame, and they can supply artwork or
printing on the surface of the CD.

REPLICATION: The second process for making CD copies is usually referred to as replication or stamping. This is the method used on all CDs available for retail purchase. CD replication is a manufacturing process wherein the digital data (music) is “stamped” onto a raw CD. The CD is then treated and coated for protection. Artwork can later be silk-screened onto the surface of the disc. Click here for more detailed information on the differences between the CD duplication and CD replication process.

And Click here for a video on the CD replication process.


So, what exactly does all this coded printing jargon mean?

Standard CD artwork consists of 3 separate entities: booklet, tray card, and the on-disc artwork (CD imprint).

The booklet contains the front cover and any additional pages. These “pages” are counted by number of printed sides (1 page, printed front and back = 2 pages, etc.)

The tray card includes the back cover and the folds that appear up both thin spines of the CD.

On disc artwork is printed on the CD surface itself.

The printed colors are often listed as “4/0”, “4/1”, “4/4”, etc. These numbers refer to the number of colors used in printing. 4-color (CMYK) printing basically means standard full color. The 4 ink colors are blended together in different combinations to make up the rest of the colors. 1-color generally means black ink, and 0-color refers to a blank page.

Finally, a couple of examples to try and clarify…

A 4/0 tray card would be the back cover and spines in full color with a blank inside back cover. A 2-page 4/1 booklet would consist of a one page full color front cover with black and white on the other side (inside front). Hope that helps, and that your head’s not spinning too much…