PROS / This application's functionality goes beyond creating CDs. It's a full-fledged creative suite that lets you create, edit, and embellish audio, video, and images.
CONS / There is no version of this software available for Macintosh computers.
VERDICT / Roxio Creator NXT 5 is a great digital suite that can handle all your digital media.
Roxio Creator NXT 5 is a full-bodied, multimedia creative suite that includes excellent CD burning abilities. You can perform many tasks related to optical media, such as creating audio and data CDs, but this application also opens the door to several other possibilities. It provides many powerful audio-editing tools, and it even allows you to convert legacy media such as vinyl records and cassette tapes into a digital format that you can play in your CD player.
Audio and data CD burning is only a small part of Roxio Creator's uses. This application has an attractive video and photo editor as well as various archiving and sharing features. You can share your video creations on sites like YouTube, Facebook and Google Plus directly from the interface. Additionally, this program gives you the ability to download files from the internet, rip content from CDs and DVDs, capture streaming video from the web, and more. For these reasons and more, Roxio Creator NXT 5 earns the Top Ten Reviews Gold Award for best CD burning software.
While it is by no means the primary function of Roxio Creator NXT 5, the CD burning module stands head and shoulders above the other applications on our comparison chart. When we rated and ranked all 10 applications, we subjected each product to a battery of tests. Of all the products in our lineup, Roxio Creator NXT 5 scored the highest. You should have no problems learning or using this software – regardless of your computer skill level.
Besides burning audio and data CDs, you can copy DVDs. This is a great tool if you have a library of DVDs you want to back up or digitize. However, it can't copy, rip or back up copy-protected discs, so you'll need to first download a plugin to circumvent anti-piracy encryptions if you need to copy a commercial DVD you own.
One of the more useful backup tools with this CD burner is its ability to extract a CD or DVD's disc image (ISO file), which it then saves to your computer. This file is essentially the blueprint of a disc that you can use as a digital backup or to burn to a new disc without needing the original disc. Once the ISO file is on your computer, you can access it long after CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray discs have gone the way of cassettes, eight-tracks and vinyl records.
In our tests, we timed how long it took each CD burning application to create both audio and data discs. The Roxio Creator NXT 5 burned a full music album in two minutes – which is seconds behind DVD MovieFactory Pro 7 and Nero Burning ROM. We also found this program burned a data CD to capacity in 3.5 minutes – again, not the fastest time in our review but impressive nonetheless.
This program is excellent and will run on any Windows machine you’ve bought in recent years. However, if you run a Mac, you won’t find a version of Roxio Creator NXT 5 for your machine. We would like to see Roxio come out with a Mac-compatible version of the software like it has for other applications it offers, such as Roxio Toast.
Roxio Creator NXT 5 does much more than simply copy music tracks to a CD. The application contains a fully functional audio mixer that lets you edit, enhance and organize your audio files so they're exactly the way you want them before you burn them to a CD.
One of this application's more innovative audio tools is the LP and Tape Assistant. Using this feature, you can digitize your collection of old vinyl records and cassette tapes. You will, of course, need a record or cassette player to use this function. Roxio provides a handy tutorial that shows you how to connect these analog devices to your computer, then capture the audio in Creator. Once you've done that, the music on your legacy media is available for use in all of Roxio Creator's features, not just CD burning.
Another handy tool is this program's ability to extract audio from video files. For example, if you're a techno DJ and you want to insert a specific clip of dialogue from a movie into a track, you can use the audio extractor tool to separate the audio from the video after you've saved the movie file on your hard drive. Then you can use the audio editor to extract the clip you want and drop it into your song. This is just one of many uses for the audio extractor tool.
In case you don't have the audio you need for your project on your hard drive, Roxio Creator has a convenient tool called Easy Audio Capture. All you have to do is play the audio online and click the option to capture audio from the sound card. It records any audio you're playing online, no matter the source. If you listen to more than one track in a row, the tool uses the silence in between songs or other audio files to separate them into tracks.
Capturing songs from the internet or an analog source is one thing, but filling in all the metadata, such as the artist name, album and year recorded, can be time-consuming, and you may not have all the information available. Roxio has an answer for this too. This CD burner software application can automatically detect what song is playing and fill in the metadata for you.
All of the audio features in this program are quite convenient and easy to use. But they're just a portion of this software package. This CD burner also contains video tools equivalent to Roxio's audio features. The video editor is basic but helpful. Its DVD-authoring features allow you to make customized discs with ease.
Help & Support
Roxio has a robust technical support section on its website. If you have a simple problem, you can consult the knowledgebase or join a discussion group. It also has a nice FAQs section. In case you have an issue that requires more attention, Roxio provides a customer support line, but it isn't toll-free, and it deals primarily with sales requests.
Roxio Creator NXT 5 is far more than just CD burning software. It’s a full creative suite capable of making any type of media you want – images, audio and video. It also allows you not only to publish your creations on physical media such as CDs and DVDs, but to extract and edit audio and to convert your old media like vinyl records. This versatility makes it one of the best CD burners you can find.