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Customize your Disc Menu with Pinnacle Studio

Customize your Disc Menu with Pinnacle Studio By Le Papy - Last updated on Monday, January 13, 2014
66310 Views :: 2 Comments :: Article Rating (Total Votes: 1)
Category: Pinnacle Studio 21 & S16-S20 Tutorials / Menus  -  Previous tutorials
Published on Thursday, January 23, 2014
Created on Saturday, November 30, 2013 7:17 AM

In early 2011, I showed you The Tale of Changing a Menu. This tutorial was created with Studio 14 and explain how to customize a menu. I wondered if we could do the same thing with Studio 16 or Studio 17. I want to reassure you immediately, the answer is YES. But the user interface is so different that I felt only a new tutorial could explain the required sequence of operations without creating confusion for the reader. We started with a simple observation, using an existing disc menu. It was sometimes difficult to change the background of a menu without messing up the good chapter texts. While showing the general construction of a disc menu, the tutorial showed a method to do so.

Step 1: A Little Reminder of How to Create a Disc Menu

Avid Studio, Studio 16 and Studio 17 have totally revamped our way of building the disc menus. These screenshots were made with Studio 16.

  1. After you create your movie project in the "Movie" tab.
  2. You need to create a disc project in the "Disc" tab.

Once you select the "Disc" tab to convert your movie project to a disc project, a window will open.

  1. Answer "YES" to proceed.
Opening the "Disc" tab

In your media options, select the disc menus.

For the purposes of this tutorial, I used "Sports Soccer sub 16x9" from the Standard menu.

  1. This disc menu consists of:
    • A background with a football* theme (*soccer in the USA).
    • 3 buttons with thumbnails.
    • 3 text boxes to assign names to the chapters.
    • A "Next" button.
    • A "Previous" button.
    • A "Main" button.
  2. Drag the desired menu to the menu drop zone area. Studio assigns a color (blue, yellow, green ...) and assign the same color to chapter markers assigned to this menu.

This menu allows you to create three chapters. If you do not have more than three chapters, the "Next", "Previous" and "Main" navigation buttons will not appear in the disc simulator.

If you have more than three chapters, you can create an additional menu page by right clicking on the first menu item and selecting "Add menu page". An additional page will be automatically connected to the first page and to the navigation buttons between the two menu pages.

Slipped / Submitted the selected menu
  1. Once your disc menu has been placed in the menu drop zone area, Studio names it "Menu 1" and gives it a sky blue color.
  2. In the player window, the first button was linked automatically at the beginning of your movie.
  3. Chapter Marker C1, also sky blue, was created automatically at the beginning of your movie.
The player window and the drop zone menus library

Studio did all the work needed for the first button but there are two buttons still not assigned. The red question marks are there to remind you to link them.

  1. Click on a red question mark...
  2. And drag it from the player to the track at the desired location of your second chapter. That's all you have to do, Studio will take it from there.
  3. A button allows you to access the chapter wizard  if you prefer to let Studio take over the entire process.


Connect other buttons to the corresponding chapters
  1. Click and drag the C2 chapter marker to change the beginning of the second chapter and C2.
  2.  Studio will display the image in the preview window corresponding to your new position.

I'll let you link the third button in the same way you have linked the second. Studio will automatically create a sky blue M1 return to menu marker at the end of the timeline.

Studio helps you position your chapter
Step 2 : The Menu Editor and Editing an Existing Menu

After this little tidbit, intended to briefly review the basics of creating a disc menu, we now get into the heart of the matter which is to edit an existing menu. To change the existing menu, you'll have to edit it to apply a number of changes.

  1. Now that your three buttons with thumbnails are each linked to a chapter, we can begin to think about editing the disc menu.
  2. As usual, Studio offers several options to edit the menu: The "Edit" button is available but double-clicking the Menu 1 icon in the menu drop zone will also work. In both cases, you will be taken to the menu editor.


Disc menu edition from the player

The Menu Editor consists of five main areas:

  1. The preview window that shows the changes in real time.
  2. The thumbnail from the library.
  3. Area selection settings.
  4. The layer list.
  5. The Toolbar.
Different areas of the editor window menu
I want to remind you that the issue with seeing the text came about because we wanted to change the menu background to better customize it for our needs. The operation is simple, just drag your personal photo over the soccer theme in the Background Drop Zone. Changing the background of the menu
Step 3 : Solving Our Problem

After you have changed the background, you may see that some chapter titles are barely visible, depending on your new background. You can change the text color but you need to find a color appropriate to the context and which is visible for all three titles. For aesthetic reasons, I dismissed the idea of using a different color for each chapter title.

  1. In this case, the text of Chapter 1 is no longer clearly visible.
  2. Perhaps with your background, it will be the text for Chapter 2 or Chapter 3 that will no longer be visible.

Moreover, the photo substituted for the original background took on a greenish color ... Go to the bottom of the area selection settings and uncheck the stereoscopy parameter "stereoscopic" box, it should improve the look...

The new background was substituted for the old

The solution that I am offering is to add a solid color using a suitable shape under each of the chapter titles to ensure they are all visible.

  1. To do this, in the toolbar, you use the Shape Tool.
  2. And, in this case, create a rectangle.
Adding a rectangular shape under the chapter title
  1. A default sized white rectangle is immediately created in the center of the preview window.
  2. I suggest you color it immediately by editing the parameters for the appearance and Fill Color.
  3. By clicking on the "Fill" box you will get the classic Windows interface that allows you to choose your color (either by clicking on a color swatch, or by using the picker, or by changing the RGB color code sliders). And don't forget to click the "Apply" button at the bottom of the "Fill Box" window.
Fill the rectangle with a color matched to the background

Your rectangle now has a color. Now that it's easier to see, it will be easier to resize.

  1. At the four corners of the form, your mouse pointer turns into a double arrow that allows you to resize the shape while maintaining its aspect ratio.
  2. In the middle of each side, a handle allows you to resize the form without keeping its aspect ratio.
Resizing the rectangle shape
  1. When you have resized the colored rectangle, you can move it close to the final position to refine its size.
  2. You will see that your rectangle is above the chapter title and that it hides it.
  3. It hides the title because the last layer is created on top of the layer stack and masks the lower layers.
Temporary positioning of the rectangle shape

Now that you are sure of the size and color of your rectangle, you can duplicate it. Select the "Shape Layer" which is on top of the layer stack and press Ctrl + C once and Ctrl + V twice to create two new rectangle layers. They will stack on top of the first rectangle. From the upper layer position:

  1. Drag one of the layers to its new location over Chapter 2.
  2. Drag the second layer to its new location over Chapter 3.
  3. Leave the third layer at its original location on top of Chapter 1.
  4. Note that there are three "Shape Layer" layers on the layer stack.
Duplicate the layer created and its installation

To be sure about your alignment, use the Group Align tool in the Toolbar.

  1.  Select the three Shape Layers by holding the Ctrl or Shift key.
  2. In the toolbar, click the "Group Align" button.
  3. Choose the left alignment for this example.
  4. Your three rectangles are aligned on the leftmost rectangle.
  5. You can also click on "Space Even Down" to make it look even nicer ...
Alignment created layers

To permanently fix the position of your three rectangles with each other, you can group them in a single layer.

  1. Make sure all three "Shape Layers" are positioned where you want them.
  2. Right-click your selection and select the "Grouping" item.
  3. Click on "Group".

All three layers will be included in a layer grouping called "GroupLayer", see screenshot below.

Grouping of three layers forms

But your color layers will be above the chapter titles again, so...

  1. Select the "GroupLayer" layer.
  2. In the toolbar, click the "Order" button.
  3. Click the "Send to Back" item.

This action will send the "GroupLayer" layer grouping that include the three "Shape Layer" layers to the bottom of the layer stack. Your group of three rectangles will no longer hide the chapter titles.

Positioning of the group layers in the layer stack

While in the menu editor you can change chapter # to Period # for example. But don't touch the # sign since that automatically takes the chapter number.

  1. You have three group layers titled "chapter #". Right-click on each of the three group headings.
  2. Select the "Edit Layer Name" item. Don't try to select just a part of the layer name ... remove it completely and then enter the correct text.
Renaming chapters

If you look at your player window, you will see the result.

  1. By grasping the group rectangle, you can push it to its final location without the risk of disrupting the rest of the layout since they are independent of each other.
  2.  You have now completed your efforts and hopefully you are happy ...
Definitive establishment of the group of three rectangles

Since the screenshots were made with Studio 16, a short video made with Studio 17 might not be a bad idea ... wink

Thank you Jacky, your first idea has made its way ... enlightened

{Thanks to Loosecannon for the fine tuning}

{Screen Captures were made with the help of Snagit 10 by TechSmith and video grabs were done with Live Screen Capturing which comes with Studio 17.

Share/Save this article

mark By # mark @ Sunday, September 21, 2014 3:12 PM
Your example above has a thumbnail put into the chapters before youo edit text or the menue. My Pinnicle 17 I do not get this I just show where I can edit text I put 2 or 3 chapters on the timeline I click the thumbnail button on either title but no picture. I just want to have a picture I select from the timeline to be at the chapter title but unable to get it to work. Called pinnicle and they don't know either. are they not the producers of pinnicle and they have no clue?
Please help I have wasted too many hours trying this and I give up?

Déclic Vidéo FX By # Déclic Vidéo FX @ Sunday, September 21, 2014 3:38 PM
Sorry, we don't understand your problem. Please join Pinnacle Forum and explain with screen capture.

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