What's wrong with iDVD?
The original poster may suffer from “new version disease”. These are people that cannot deal with using software that is no longer in production. (Although, only a few weeks ago I received an update to iDVD from Apple.)
Like you, I am perfectly content to continue to use iDVD until the day it stops working. At that point I will look for an alternative, which will probably be more plentiful as third-party developers fill this large vacuum that is created by Apple losing interest in those who wish to make DVDs.
iDVD does not cost $80. The entire iLife 11 disk, which includes 4 other applicartions, only costs $49 from the online Apple Store and it's availalbe from Amazon.com for around $20 at times. So at best iDVD costs only $10 from the Apple store.
Whereever did you get that $80 number. And there are no free alternatives that work with Snow Leopard or later that I've found. If you can find one then come back.
The question is "What is a good free alternative to iDVD?"
There are none.
In fact, there is no alternative to iDVD for ANY amount of money (I've tried them all).
There certainly are other programs that will burn a DVD. However, none of them come anywhere near the power and easy use of iDVD.
I bought an IMac a few weeks ago, created a slideshow on IPhoto only to learn that there was no IDVD to burn it. It is available on ILife11 but if you have just spent a considerable ammount of money on your Mac, why then should you have to spend yet more of your hard earned cash on a DVD burning program, especially when you have 3 of the 5 apps that come with ILife11 already?
I called Apple Support, spoke to an advisor who was understanding but really just tells you that it isn't shipped with Lion OS anymore. You then have to insist, politely, of course, to speak to a senior advisor, (if the advisor himself isn't compassionate enough to suggest that himself).
If you can, request a 'callback' where they call you (they pay the call charges), air your grievances calmly & you should receive a free hard copy of ILife 11. The standard Apple support advisor won't have the authority to grant you anything more than a compassionate ear so you must speak to a senoir advisor. I received my free copy of ILife11 in the post a week later. It worked for me, it has worked for others so it should work for you.
Good luck, keep calm & maintain your creativity!
Burn seems to be a free "alternative"
Whatever quality - I don't know - extreamly Basic as I tested it - still did work for very plain Video-DVD burning.
Yours Bengt W