Toast now includes audio tools previously found in the separate app Jam, and DJs will like the improved functionality, including the ability to create audio discs with custom crossfades and transitions. Adding effects can be a pain, though, since you can't add an effect to all of your tracks in one step, and there's no way to preview effects from the Sound Effects window. You're also limited to three effects per track. But we like the assistant interface that's been added to the CD Spin Doctor application, which makes it easier to convert LPs and tapes to digital.
If you've ever suffered a damaged disc, the new disc-recovery tool might be worth the price all by itself. Toast can now search a damaged disc and recover all undamaged sectors, helping you copy as much information off a scratched CD or DVD as possible. Choose the Disc Copy selection and check the option to use disc recovery.
Toast's help and support options are decent, but could use some work. Finding help on specific topics can be tricky. For example, the printed manual doesn't include LightScribe information, and the online resources and Toast's electronic help barely mentions it. You'll find full details by opening Disc Cover RE's help file, but not everyone will realize where to look. The support site offers online documents and forums, as well as a link to contact the support staff (registration required).
Considering its fair price and varied functionality, Toast's flaws are minor and it's still an excellent suite. Version 8 keeps the product up to date and delivers important new tools to the advanced Mac user.