· TUTUORIAL · CD AND DVD LABEL SILKSCREENING

 

  Template download
  Introduction
  The process
  The colors
  2 color examples
  2 color picture discs
  4 color picture discs
  Center hub area
  Spec diagrams
  Complete film specs
  Trapping
  Silkscreen compensation spec

Most CDs are printed using the silkscreen printing process. This is the same process as used in printing T-Shirts. Silkscreen uses thick almost-opaque ink. The ink has a consistency similar to oil-based paint. The benefit of this process are the rich and vivid colors it allows. There are some major drawbacks with this process... mainly that it is not well-suited for printing pictures, especially small pictures like on a CD label. That would be OK if we could just never print pictures and extremely fine details, but LOTS of people do!

So the CD label art probably gives us the most problems. Jobs are often delayed because there is something wrong with the label design or the films. When customers have another designer prepare films for us to use, we have had to reject them almost every time. We have made these pages to help explain the limitations of CD silkscreening, and how to get around those limitations as best we can.