One of the most commonly asked questions I see band members ask in online groups and forums is “Where is the best place to get CDs printed?”
'Best' depends on what you want, so I’ve scoured the internet for recommendations and done some research to give you a top 5 that covers a range of things we think mate them worth checking out! (Listed in no particular order)
VP Online - High quality, low prices!
We’ll start with VP Online because I’ve used them a few times now and have always had fantastic results.
Based in Scotland VP focus on delivering high quality CDs at decent prices. You can order as few as 25 duplications which makes them ideal for limited edition runs. Speaking from experience I can highly recommend their cardboard wallets which not only look cool, they’re better for the environment.
If you want samples fill your contact details on the homepage and they’ll send you some out. Sometimes they send you free Haribo too which is cool!
Cram duplication - By popular request!
Almost every time I see people asking about printing CDs online someone mentions Cram Duplication, usually multiple people.
Understandably people love the fact that Cram are a small team of people with a huge range of different CD and Packaging options. Add to that the fact that they offer small runs at reasonable prices - and don’t charge to correct small mistakes in your artwork - and it’s no wonder DIY bands like them.
Personally I really like the look of the Vinyl Effect CDs - very cool.
Cyclone music - The indie label special
So far I’ve talked a bit about low volumes and limited runs, but for some people it’s all about quantity. If you’re planning on printing 500 or more CDs it’s worth checking out Cyclone.
Working with a number of independent record labels and distributors, freelance producers, production houses and teaching organisations throughout the UK, Europe and the USA these guys have over 25 years experience in the industry. They also offer offer competitive package deals including mastering & authoring, artwork/ design and manufacturing.
Disc Factory - The Green option
There’s lots of good things to like Disc Factory, the main reason they made this list is their ‘Green’ and ‘Greener’ digipack options.
As someone who loves the planet (I mean, who doesn’t love being able to live and breathe right?) and excellent quality packaging, Digipacks really appeal to me.
Going 1 step further Disc Factory offer the ‘Greener’ digipack option which comes with a Paperfoam tray instead of the traditional plastic one. This 100% biodegradable alternative is made completely out of natural resources and uses potato starch as a raw material. With an 85% lower carbon footprint compared to traditional plastic CD packaging this seems like a brilliant option for bands who want something a little more robust than a cardboard sleeve but don’t want to send the planet to an early grave!
Promodiscs - Fast and informative
For quick turnaround short runs Promodiscs can get 100-400 CDs manufactured, packaged and shipped within 24-48 hours.
In addition to getting stuff to you quickly there are loads of good deals on their Special Offers page worth checking out.
One other thing I really liked about Promodiscs was their blog. Flicking through the site I came across some great articles to support independent musicians including ‘The difference between CD duplication and replication’ and ‘How to make a great demo CD’
NB If you want duplication services with Promodiscs you do have to order 500 or more units.
Do you use a different company? Let us know who they are and why you like them in the comments below…