capsule review

Dragon Burn 3.1

At a Glance
  • NewTech Infosystems Dragon Burn 3.1

    Macworld Rating

Dragon Burn 3.1.17, an inexpensive disc-burning application from NewTech Infosystems, promises some intriguing features that Mac OS and Roxio's Toast 6 Titanium (   ; December 2003) do not offer. Among these features are simultaneous burning on multiple recorders, multisession DVD-R burning, and conversion of an iTunes playlist's AAC files to AIFF files for an audio CD. Regrettably, too many of its features work poorly (or not at all).

Before citing Dragon Burn's failings, let's talk about what it does well. Unlike OS X or Toast, Dragon Burn lets you load a disc image file into the program and burn it to multiple CD and DVD burners at the same time. This can be a time-saver if you have a couple of CD burners and need to make several copies of a disc. Dragon Burn also makes the creation of multisession CD-R discs -- discs you've recorded data to multiple times -- very easy. It gives you two recording options when you're ready to record a disc -- Disc and Session. Theoretically, all you need to do to create a multisession disc is click on the Session button.

I say "theoretically" because multisession burning is not an option for DVD-R discs and doesn't work properly with DVD-RW media. The program writes the first session to a DVD-RW disc, but when you later insert that disc into your Mac's DVD drive, the drive doesn't recognize it. Worse, I couldn't eject these discs without rebooting my Mac while holding down the mouse button.

Although Dragon Burn 3 lets you import iTunes playlists that include AAC-encoded files and then burn those files as an audio disc, the resulting files sound noisy and distorted. When you rip an audio disc and convert the resulting files to another format, title information changes to a meaningless mix of letters and numbers -- Peter Gabriel's "Red Rain," for example, changed to dbxt16531729.mp3.

Macworld's Buying Advice

A disc-burning program -- even one priced at around $40 -- that fails to deliver on its promises is no bargain. If the disc-burning features built into OS X aren't extensive enough for you, spend the money to get a disc-burning application that works -- Roxio's Toast 6 Titanium.

At a Glance
  • Macworld Rating

    Pros

    • Simultaneously records to multiple burners
    • Clear multisession interface

    Cons

    • Multisession DVD burning doesn't work properly
    • Strips titles from converted audio files
    • Poor AAC conversion
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