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FAQ - Manufacturing

 
IMPORTANT QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR ORDER


What’s the Deal with Overages?

To charge or not to charge for overages? That is the question that every replicator must address. Here is the reality. Whether your replicator “charges” you or not, you are paying for overages… either outright and upfront, or hidden in the price.

So why do there have to be overages anyway? Contrary to what some may say, it is not a ”scam-the-customer” tactic, but a common-sense and money-saving practice. Any given job requires numerous processes — the disc printing, the replication, the printing of the associated packaging materials (inserts, traycards, etc.), and then the assembly aspects. In an industry where every job is custom and unique, “setup” is a substantial portion of production downtime. Even with the most stringent quality standards and the best maintained equipment, there will still be that occasional problem — a silkscreening misprint, for instance — when the disc ends up in the trash. Running a few extra actually saves money, because it alleviates additional downtime for reruns and minimizes production schedule interruptions. Overruns are necessary to the efficient flow of any manufacturing plant.

But should you have to pay for overages, if they are merely a replicator’s “mistake insurance”? The reality is that they are a cost of production, and so whether you pay for and receive your overages, or you pay for the exact amount ordered, this cost is in there somewhere. Be assured though, that as explained above — it is an efficiency practice that ultimately saves money by saving downtime.

How do we at Atlanta Manufacturing Group handle overages? We do charge our customers for overages; however, we strive to keep overruns to a maximum of 5 to 10%. (Industry standard is 10%).

If you have any questions about our overage policies, please feel free to talk to a sales representative.

Do I need to have a UPC code to sell my products? How do I get a UPC code?

Barcodes, also called UPCs, are useful if you plan to do any type of distribution including online sales. If you have a barcode, you will be able to report your direct sales to SoundScan. We own a registered master barcode and are more than happy to generate a unique number for your release. We are also happy to generate the graphic files for you if you own your own UPC. Last we checked, to register your own code is about $700 at www.uc-council.org. You really don't need to get your own company barcode unless you plan to release lots of records from your own label (lots meaning hundreds). Leave a space (1.5 x .5 in. minimum) for the barcode on your traycard and we'll drop it into your design or we can e-mail the code to your designer for placement.

Need more information about obtaining your UPC or registering the number...
Click here to see more: Barcode and ISRC Code information

What do those numbers mean?

UPC-A barcodes consist of 12 numbers. The first six are assigned to the company that owns the code. The next four digits are assigned by the company to identify a single release. The 11th digit identifies what type of product you are coding for this release. The final digit is a check digit that is generated by a formula to let the barcode scanner know it read the code correctly. For example, AMG owns the company ID of 677516. We gave your release the next six digits of 123456, that would be your release ID. Once provided to you, that number will never be used again.

How do I get my album counted on soundscan?

In order to have your CD or DVD sales counted by SoundScan you will need to register your title with SoundScan. Thereafter, your sales from SoundScan-reporting stores (e.g., cdfreedom.com) are reported every week. You can register your barcode directly with SoundScan by going to their website: http://www.soundscan.com.

What is an ISRC?

The ISRC (International Standard Recording Code) is the international identification system for sound recordings and music video recordings. Each ISRC is a unique and permanent identifier for a specific recording, independent of the format on which it appears (CD, audio file, etc) or the rights holders involved. Only one ISRC should be issued to a track, and an ISRC can never represent more than one unique recording.

ISRCs are widely used in digital commerce by download sites and collecting societies. An ISRC can also be permanently encoded into a product as its digital fingerprint. Encoded ISRC provide the means to automatically identify recordings for royalty payments.

You can apply for ISRC codes or learn more about them through this website:
US ISRC Agency

What kind of master should I send?

We accept many formats for masters when replicating CDs and DVDs. We recommend that you send us a CD-R Master for your CD job. This gives you the best option to review your final master before you send it in for replication. We also accept DAT, U-Matic and PCM cartridges. Historically, these other formats were much more stable than CD-R masters. Today, a great master can be created with good quality CD-R media in a quality CD-R burner, recorded to the disc at 1x or 2x speed. The best part about using a CD-R master is that you can compare your final product with the original master with the same player. We replicate your master exactly as you provide it. If you have not had your audio professionally mastered, we recommend that you consider doing so. Professional mastering can make the difference between airplay and no airplay as well as enhance the listener’s experience.

Will my song titles appear when I input my CD to my computer or CD player?

If your master is an audio PMCD and was created with CD Text software, your song information should have been included on your master disc. We can add CD Text to your master for $75.00. Please e-mail us the exact text you would like for each track. Please remember that the text will only show on certain types of CD players and computer software.

How should I prepare my master?

Please supply us with a PMCD master containing P and Q codes properly formatted with frame-accurate SMPTE time log. When prepared properly our replication process will produce an exact copy. Always listen to your master at least once in a good quality player. Do not use a car stereo as you may scratch the surface. Do extended listening on your reference copies.

Why should I use FedEx or UPS to send my master?

Use FedEx or UPS or another reliable TRACKABLE delivery service so you can be sure we received your materials. Please keep back up files and a back up master just in case anything happens to the originals.

How long does it take for AMG to manufacture my discs?

It typically takes 15 business days to manufacture the average CD or DVD project. Certain packaging such as Digipaks or CD wallets will add approx 5 business days. A straight reorder with no changes will typically be done in 12-15 business days. Larger quantities may also add a few days onto the process. Typically, CD-R and DVD-R jobs are produced in 10-12 business days. Day "0" is the day you approve your final graphics proof. The fastest way to get a job started is to use PDF proofs and approve them as soon as you get the final PDF proofs from us.

Policy Regarding Jobs with “Adult Content”

We plain and simply DO NOT duplicate or replicate discs with adult content. And it is important that you choose a replication company that does not touch the stuff. As many as 50% of the replicators out there do indeed accept jobs that would be categorized as porn, and horror stories abound of products getting “co-mingled” at such plants. To ensure the integrity of your job, when choosing a replication company, it is critical to know their acceptance policies in regards to such materials.

How are CDs and DVDs replicated and how is that different than duplication?

Ever wondered how your discs are made... Replication is the best way to assure no loss of quality from your master, basically what you put in is exactly what you get out. Duplication on the other hand relies on a computer and tower of CD/DVD trays to burn copies of your discs, similar to how you do it on your home machine. For our duplication, we do however use extremely high quality blank discs and very high end equipment, so any loss of quality is greatly reduced and seldom even noticed in the final product. We use replication for any order of 1000 or more units and even for some smaller quantities if it is a straight reorder. Duplication is more cost effective for smaller quantities. Below is a video that shows the basic process of replication, it is very fascinating and most people have no idea that the discs are created on the fly buy melting the plastic and stamping the data into it from a glass master. As always, feel free to ask us anytime if you have questions regarding the production of your product, we are always glad to help out.

 


 



4458 Peachtree Lake Drive, Suite A, Duluth, GA 30096 • Phone: 404.230.9559 • Fax: 770-417-1016