Author Topic: Media advice/help sought  (Read 3448 times)

Bill Binkelman

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Media advice/help sought
« on: July 24, 2008, 12:19:27 PM »
I know lots of you here are very media and software savvy so I hope some of you will be able to help me.

I know how to do elaborate PowerPoint presentations, but what I now want to do is to take all our digital photos and surprise Kathryn at Christmas with some DVD "movies" (slide shows) of our photos set to music. I can do this easily in PowerPoint but it's no fun watching it on a computer, versus a TV (a TV also allows others to watch it too). Now, I recently attended a memorial service here at Hamline for a co-worker who died unexpectedly of cancer (she was a wonderful person and her husband put together fhe show for our benefit). The show "looked" like a PowerPoint slideshow with text added to slides, various wipe and fade effects, and embedded music. But it was DVD (saw the DVD logo at the end but no software/application name).

So, here's what I want to know:

A) is there software that allows you to convert a PowerPoint slideshow to DVD format and burn it?
B) if not, is there software that I can buy that will allow me to do what I can do in PowerPoint, i.e. insert and sequence jpeg photos as "slides", insert text or graphics on some "slides," use various transition effects like wipe, fade, etc. between slides and finally, and most importantly, embed music clips to use as a soundtrack (the software should be Windows-based unless impossible...I'd have to buy a Mac to do this if it's only available Mac-based, but I'd be open to doing that).

I was just at Office Max and saw a program that might work, Corel's MediaOne Plus. For example, the description states "...Choose from hundreds of templates to quickly create great photo projects, such as slide shows and digital scrapbooks. Email, print or make DVDs of your memories to share with family and friends."

Anyway, if any of you can offer advice or help me out, I'd appreciate it. I'd love to surprise Kathryn with basically our entire 12+ years together (as a couple) with this special gift. I have lots of regular photos that I still have to scan into jpegs as well (that's gonna take forever!). But I have 4 months to get it done.

Thanks for indulging me.

mgriffin

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2008, 12:37:03 PM »
iMovie/iDVD would do this very easily on the Mac but I know you prefer a Windows solution.  If you have a DVD-burner application like Nero or something, it wouldn't surprise me if there was something similar for Windows.  I have Nero on my Windows PC but I don't mess around with the DVD video features so I can't be sure.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2008, 12:42:37 PM by mgriffin »
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mgriffin

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2008, 12:43:36 PM »
Read this topic for discussion of Picasa's "photo to DVD" option as well as some other ideas.

http://ask.metafilter.com/26955/DVD-photo-slideshow-software
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Bill Binkelman

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2008, 12:47:34 PM »
iMovie/iDVD would do this very easily on the Mac but I know you prefer a Windows solution.  If you have a DVD-burner application like Nero or something, it wouldn't surprise me if there was something similar for Windows.  I have Nero on my Windows PC but I don't mess around with the DVD video features so I can't be sure.

Can I buy an older Mac (say 2 or 3 years old) and will this appl. run on it? Used iMacs are pretty cheap around here. Or even a cheap older Powerbook. Nero won't work. I've tried it (we have it on our computers here at work). How expensive is iMovie/iDVD to buy?

Thanks, BTW.

ffcal

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2008, 12:47:59 PM »
Have you tried Windows Movie Maker?

http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/downloads/updates/moviemaker2.mspx

It came with my computer (running XP), but I think you can get it for free at the above link.  I'm not sure if the above version can do slide shows, but the version on my computer seems to have an option for importing pictures.

Forrest

mgriffin

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2008, 12:51:43 PM »
iMovie/iDVD would do this very easily on the Mac but I know you prefer a Windows solution.  If you have a DVD-burner application like Nero or something, it wouldn't surprise me if there was something similar for Windows.  I have Nero on my Windows PC but I don't mess around with the DVD video features so I can't be sure.

Can I buy an older Mac (say 2 or 3 years old) and will this appl. run on it? Used iMacs are pretty cheap around here. Or even a cheap older Powerbook. Nero won't work. I've tried it (we have it on our computers here at work). How expensive is iMovie/iDVD to buy?

Thanks, BTW.

iMovie and iDVD come pre-installed on all Macs in the last 5 years or more.  You could get a new MacMini as cheap as $599 (it would need a USB mouse and keyboard, and monitor) and you'd be all set, and of course there are the used options you mentioned.

iDVD makes it very easy to do a photo slideshow.  You just import a bunch of pictures and choose settings for how long to display each image, transitions (crossfade, wipe, etc.), and whether you want any music on it.
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MarkM

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2008, 12:57:31 PM »
Without question Adobe PhotoShop Elements will do the slide show set to music with a variety of transitions.  In addition it has quite a few of regular PhotoShop's functions.  I believe my wife bought it for $60-90 via Amazon. It allows you to take the slide show and convert it to a variety of digital formats.  You can make them small enough to email. However, to get it on a DVD at full size and resolution, I think you need one of their expansion packs or versions which isn't too much extra money.  We didn't need it because I have Adobe Premier and it easily converted the Elements slide show for a DVD.  I'm in the video business and have created many video slide shows, and I have never seen one as easy to work with than PhotoShop Elements. The next time I need to do a pro-level slide show I will consider Elements.  Currently I use AfterEffects which is incredibly powerful, but much slower to work with.  Elements can do everything Powerpoint can do (slide show-wise) and much more.

Bill Binkelman

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2008, 01:54:35 PM »
Thanks to all who have replied so far. Great info. I have found a few Windows-based free downloads and will try them out. I stillneed to buy a standalone external DVD burner since my work computer only burns CDs. Or I may do as Mike suggested and buy a cheap Mac with the superdrive (I think that's the one that burns CDs and DVDs).

Again, I appreciate the suggestions and advice.  I will explore all options, I assure you!  :)

mgriffin

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2008, 02:00:19 PM »
I just realized, Bill, I think the lowest-end MacMini just has a combo drive (DVD player, CDR burner) and not a DVD burner.  You'd have to go another $200 to get a built-in DVDR (Apple calls it a Superdrive) but that $200 would also get you a bigger hard drive and faster processor. 

You might be able to get a recent used iMac with Superdrive and iMovie/iDVD for less than that.

If you find a Windows solution you can easily get an external DVDR for under $100.
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Bill Binkelman

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Re: Media advice/help sought
« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2008, 02:25:02 PM »
Thanks, Mike. Great info.