Menu button addition or modification - quickest method

Sometimes I’d like to add a button or two to an existing menu or create a new menu where the button design and appearance is compatible with the existing menu. At the moment I can do this but it is extremely time consuming. What I do is export the frame of an existing menu, work on it in Photoshop, import the result into DVD Architect, work on it further, create a dummy (small) DVD, then merge the result back into my original DVD.

The greatest problem is that I find it hard to match the colour and highlighting of the new button with that of the original button/s. DVD Architect doesn’t allow one to import custom made buttons so one is forced to use only the ones they provide. I also find it almost impossible to match the highlighting using DVD Architect.

The ideal would be to have a one-stop shop program where one can ‘capture’ all the characteristic of a button on the original DVD, then just tweak this button in one program by manipulating the subtitle image and (any) text at one time. I realise a key problem is that buttons consist of several elements of different types but many programs are able to handle a number of different elements without difficulty.

The button’s colour for highlight and activate are set by the CLUT and the selected colour scheme (of which there are 4). Here, you can define the background, pattern, emphasis 1 and emphasis 2 colours. Think of the B, P,E1 and E2 as simply 4 colours for pixels.

Now, things should be consistent if your final DVD emulates the CLUT and colour scheme exactly as the original one.

You can examine the pixels of the subpic bitmap (these actually make up the highlights) in DVDSubEdit and actually export the subpic BMPs to an editor, add your highlights for new buttons and reimport them.

As for the foreground, you have got that down pretty well. You need to add them in your favourite editing app. I use GIMP but Photoshop is also very good.

DVDRMP doesn’t allow for importing the still as a BMP - you need to make a little DVD as per the guides on the site and then use the Replace with still function. There are other programs which allow importing a BMP directly (eg VobBlanker). But in any event, you will need to do also your subpics (for all displays eg widescreen and letterbox).


I can now see that I can change the highlight colour for buttons using CLUT options. Do all buttons on a given menu have to use the same colour? It appears they do.

Strangely (to me) I can create (add) a button in DVDReMaker to a menu but the highlight colour which applies to all the other buttons on the menu does not apply to the newly created one. It remains invisible (although if I can find it, I can use it ok - the navigation I have created works).

Given your very useful tips I am getting closer to an efficient solution. Can I do the following:

  1. Export a menu frame as a bmp, then add say a couple of words to this bmp (in say Photoshop)- this in effect becomes part of the background in a particular postion on the menu.

  2. Export this modified bmp and import it into a suitable DVD creating program (say, DVD Architect).

  3. Create a dummy menu with whatever defaults come up without trying to change anything in this program then export it as a dummy DVD.

  4. Merge the resulting menu with my original DVD in DVDReMake

  5. Change the size, colour, highlighting as I wish for all the buttons in the newly added menu.

In any given PGC, each button can use one of the (user defined) colour schemes. But the CLUT is the same for each button in a given PGC. However, each colour scheme can be made up of different CLUT references and contrasts. It’s up to you!

Adding a button in the navpacks does not make the button visible. For that, it needs the subpic pack to have, at that button location as defined in the navpacks (i.e. when you defined a new button), some sort of shape that is referenced to the 4 bits (B/P/E1/E2). Then you pick out, via the colour scheme, what colours and contrasts those bits correspond to (note the contrast for the background pixel (B) is almost always 0 = totally transparent).

The easiest way to examine this is to load a menu in DVD Sub Edit and have a look at the underlying bitmaps.

So, here’s what I would do, assuming I’m using DVDRMP:

  1. Prepare your menu foreground using whatever graphics prog you like (same as your #1).

  2. In DVDRMP, right click in the menu PGC and select Add button. Define the button area and commands for each mode (noting that the position for WS and LB and PS will be different) and select a colour scheme (have regard to the colour scheme of the existing buttons - it will usually be 1 but DVDRMP defaults to 0) - this makes a new button in the navpacks. Save the DVD (modified files is good enough and copy them into the project folder) and exit.

  3. Open the menu VOB in DVDSubEdit. Use the File → Edit subpic bitmap with external tool function to edit the subpic and add your new button shape in the correct area in terms of the 4 pixels (I simply use MS Paint unless the shape is highly complex). Save your modified BMP - remember to do this for all tracks (0x20, 0x21 etc) - and back in DVDSubEdit, save again.

Presto! You’re done - no need for new authoring at all.


What I do in for buttons, I export CLUT in Remake from original menu and import to new menu, than it is all the same.

I’m not sure what you mean. Please elaborate.

[QUOTE=toaddub;2057697]I’m not sure what you mean. Please elaborate.[/QUOTE]

Not sure if you are talking to me or OP.
What I was talking about, is his concern to get same button colour highlights as original.

I was talking to you. I thought you needed help. But I guess you’re talking to the OP. :doh: