Nero Burning Rom 5.5

Well it's that time of the month again, time for something from the ol Johny5 to you my dear readers. Well enough of that this month we are gonna take a look at Nero Burning Rom 5.5. I have to admit I got it myself I just love it and all the things it can do.

        It is very simple to use: as soon as you open up NERO you are greeted by a cheerful wizard; which will very easily guide you through step by step, you chose the format you wish by selecting Audio, Data or Mixed Mode CD. So for illustrative purposes lets say you only like 3 tracks of the recent  album by U2,"All that you cant Leave behind’”,  you would pop that CD into your PC’s CD drive. The wizard will prompt you asking whether you wish to copy the entire CD or compile a new CD. You will now find a compilation window appears which will show all the drives and folders in your Pc. So you can choose which songs you want by either copying tracks from your Hard disk (i.e. your mp3 files or wave files etc) or copy selected tracks straight from an audio CD. You simply “drag and drop” the selected files across. Then when you’ve got your audio files in the order you want – you’re ready to burn!! Nero will do all the rest, testing, simulating etc, you will be greeted with a message saying that burning is complete. Or You simply insert the CD you wish to copy in your PC’s CD drive. Click on CD-Copy , it’s as simple as that!

         There are extensive editing features in this Nero package that I discovered recently, for example if one of your tracks has a lot of hiss, crackle you can select ‘hiss reduction’ which is a special filter which will reduce the hiss level of a particular sound and ‘declicking’ will remove any crackle. Again you will have to personally adjust and tweak these to your requirements, and the best thing is each time you make an adjustment you can listen to it first to check it is what you want, if not tweak it further. There’s no end to the amount of things you can do with this comprehensive all-in-one CD writing package, you can add echo, increase stereo-widening, fade-in, fade out. I have used ‘fade out’ when I was missing about 5 seconds off the ending of only one track so I faded the last 5 seconds and now its sounds perfect and does not end abruptly!!

         

     The Nero 5.5 suite consists of:

Nero Burning ROM - the main pre-mastering software for virtually all your CD burning needs.

      Nero Cover Designer - for creating artwork for your CD's (probably best recommended for use with special kit paper).

NeroMediaPlayer - to play multimedia files (though in honesty this optional player is a bit lame).

       Nero Image Drive Installer - I haven't used this, but I assume this is for making local hard disk versions of CD's.

Nero Wave Editor - for simply editing wave files, though most people will have a better one on their machine.

       And a Nero ToolKit folder for testing CD and drive speeds. Also you can install InCD which allows you to format CD-RW discs for use as large floppy disks, i.e. you don't need to add files via pre-mastering from Nero Burning ROM, but there are certain instances when only Nero will do. Other 'packet writing' drivers and programs can read InCD CD's too.

       InCD resides in your system tray to format CD-RW discs for it's own usage and setting properties. Once a CD-RW has been formatted in this way you can use it in pretty much the same way as a floppy disk, even 'Save As...' menu items will let you save to CD.

       There is an option also to make a floppy disk copy of DOS drivers (you never know if you may need it in a crisis) and a 13 page .pdf manual, and Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

13 pages sounds paltry, but really you don't need that much help in using Nero, and most help topics can be accessible from Nero's help menu (which has a slightly marred system that I've gotten to grips with).

 

        Nero Burning ROM is a very simple application to use. If you know how to use Windows Explorer, you know how to use this. And add to the fact that despite being simplistic anyway (all button clicks and dialogue boxes), Nero is wizard driven, so any idiot can create CD's of any supported audio, video, data, combi format (Nero supports them all, but your CD writer may not), and you can record in increments or in full - whatever your CD rewriter is capable of doing, Nero will fulfill that task on it's end (CD type dependent).

 

        

        Nero fully supports both remote and local CDDBs, as well as cdplayer.ini information, and this can be written to audio CDs using the optional CD Text ability. This is ideal for providing track listing information and again, it works very well. An excellent addition is a full copy (around 200Mb unzipped and installed) of the internet CDDB on the installation CD - although you will have to root through the CD to find it as there is no mention of it in any manuals or help texts, you can install it to your system to save costly calls to the server to find track information. Nero will then offer you the option of which track listing to use - from your cdplayer.ini file or local CDDB, for example.

         Nero Drive Speed -  This is a utility to change the read speed of CD-ROM drives and recorders. High speed drives can be very noisy when running at full speed. This can be irritating when playing multimedia files such as MP3 or video files. Reducing the speed not only reduces the noise but also decreases the spinup and spindown times.

This can greatly improve playability of games who need to access the CD-ROM drive.

         Nero Wave Editor - Say goodbye to complex external editing applications-the new built-in ultrafast Wave Editor makes Nero your all-in-one editing/burning solution! Look at these features:

1.  Non-destructive editing lets you try many options and undo all changes. 

2.  A range of audio-processing options gives you complete control over your audio files before you record them to disc. 

3.  Real-time "audition" lets you select and hear effects in real time, as your soundfile plays. 

4. Preset Manager  lets you save your frequently-used settings. 

5. Sample format conversion, anti-aliasing filters, dithering, noise shaping... and much more!

          Compared to the competition (Adaptec Easy CD, for example), Nero does in my opinion stand head and shoulders above the rest. Its greatest achievement is in combining both basic and advanced interfaces into one product, catering for the entire market. If you just want to run off a few copies of a music CD, Nero can take care of it in a flash. Yet even should you want to overburn a mixed-mode UDF/ISO CD, you won't encounter too many problems. Nero is the ideal software for CD burning and I would recommend it to anyone.

 

          Well until next month stay alive with Johnny5, and good luck with your music ventures.

 

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