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  1. Member
    Join Date: Nov 2009
    Location: United States
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    Hello everyone,

    I have used MakeMKV to copy my (standard definition) DVD's to my computer, however I am running out of space on the computer. I would like to take advantage of some of the programs here to make the files smaller. I'm not totally sure which programs I should use, but have looked at several. I am happy with the MKV container, but could use another type of container if that would be easier. Some of my mkv files have subtitles and multiple audio tracks.

    I will want to display the movies on a large screen (~ 50" wide HD TV screen). I'm ok with a little quality loss for space savings.

    I'm not sure I understand the difference in XviD or .264 but am looking for easy of conversion over ability to tweak every little setting. I'm on a win 7 x64 machine and am not worried if it takes a long time to convert a file. These DVD's are mostly TV series broken up by episode. I would love to have the ability to do batches of files so I didn't have to feed each one in at a time.
    I have tried megui and while it looks like it is pretty powerful for a free program, I think that it is a little complicated. I just read about ripbot and have tried handbrake (but I have a PC), but still am not sure what is the best.

    Do I really need .264 for standard DVD conversion? Will XviD be a better choice? Am I trying to take a MPEG-2 video file and compress it with the .264 or XviD standard? Also I'm ok if the audio does not get compressed as this doesn't really make a huge difference, but if it is part of the package as long as it works that is great.

    Thanks for any pointers you can give me.

    Steve
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  2. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
    Join Date: Oct 2005
    Location: 666th portal
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    easier to add more hard drives either internally or externally. you won't save all that much space re-encoding to slightly smaller .264 if you don't want a lot of quality loss.
    --
    "a lot of people are better dead" - prisoner KSC2-303
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  3. Member
    Join Date: Nov 2009
    Location: United States
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    Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    easier to add more hard drives either internally or externally. you won't save all that much space re-encoding to slightly smaller .264 if you don't want a lot of quality loss.
    If I saved even 25% and had little to no quality loss that would be great.

    Steve
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  4. Member dragonkeeper's Avatar
    Join Date: Jul 2003
    Location: United States
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    I agree with Aedipuss easier is adding more hard drives, on a fast rig (quad core @ 3Ghz) conversion of typical 45 minute TV show takes about 30 min. On a the typical end users PC or laptop this can easily become 2 or more hours. Time to install hard drive < 15 minutes. I'm at 6 TB and will soon be adding another 2-4 TB.
    Murphy's law taught me everything I know.
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  5. Member
    Join Date: Jan 2011
    Location: Adelaide, Australia
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    In my opinion:

    - H.264 is better than XVID.
    - If you want to keep the ultimate quality, don't compress but add more hard drives as already suggested.
    - If you are prepared to sacrifice some quality, compress to .mkv. For me, I can tolerate converting DVD's to .mkv at 750kbps video bitrate, h.264 & 720x576 max. resolution, dual pass encoding, 128Kbps MP3 audio. This produces a quite watchable quality movie of around 700MB... much better than 4.5Gb. If you cant accept that output quality, increase the video bitrate and/or resolution until you get something you can tolerate.

    I use Freemake Video Converter to make my .mkv's & you can batch convert. Converting a DVD 'on the fly' takes about 30 minutes.
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  6. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
    Join Date: Oct 2005
    Location: 666th portal
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    Originally Posted by nzdreamer55 View Post
    Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    easier to add more hard drives either internally or externally. you won't save all that much space re-encoding to slightly smaller .264 if you don't want a lot of quality loss.
    If I saved even 25% and had little to no quality loss that would be great.

    Steve

    you can probably save that much going 264. i'd start with vidcoder on normal profile at a cq of 20 and see if the size and quality suit. don't forget to de-interlace or ivtc where required. interlaced 264 isn't well supported.
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    "a lot of people are better dead" - prisoner KSC2-303
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  7. Try an x264 GUI front end like Xvid4Psp. Start with a Q18 template. You'll see very little difference between a DVD MPEG 2 source and the resulting h.264 video. The file size will be reduced by more than half. If you set the x264 preset to "veryfast" you can encode very quickly without much visible degradation.
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