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Poll: What format do you have your DVD backups in?

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  1. Member
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    Iíve finally decided to rip my entire DVD collection to my Windows Home Server and then purchase a Popcorn Hour A-110 for each TV in the house that I would like to have access to the collection. I have been reading up on everything lately and I just canít come to a decision on whether or not to rip the DVD to an ISO or compress them into h.264 and put them in a mkv container. I originally planned to rip to a movie only ISO but the size just doesnít seem to make this practical with a large library of DVDs. I have approximately 400 DVDs right now. So at around 5gb for a movie only ISO files I need about 2tb of space to start with, then double that because of Windows Home Servers folder duplication (which I would like to keep turned on because I donít want to do all this work and then have a hard drive fail in the future and have to do all the ripping again). I would need 4tb just for the collection of DVDs that I have now. Not to mention I plan to rip my HD DVD and Blu-ray collection eventually also.

    So I started down the road of ripping the DVDs and then converting them with Ripbot264 while selecting to keep the AC3 audio and use CQ 18 to get the best quality backups. I then ran into issues with subtitles. I only need the forced subtitles but finding those exact subtitles in a movie without a lot of work seems to be a huge pain.

    Iím just curious to see what process/programs others are using to make the whole conversion process easiest. Here is what I currently do.
    1. Use DVDfab to copy the main movie to my hard drive.
    2. Use Ripbot264 to compress the movie with a CQ of 18 and keep the AC3 audio.
    3. Use VobSub to extract only the Forced Subtitles.
    4. Use mkvmerge GUI to add the subtitle tracks into the mkv.

    I know it is all personal preference but Iím just looking to see what a majority of others are doing with their DVD collections. Any suggestions or tips would be helpful. Also maybe someone can convince me to just rip to the DVDs into ISO files and not go through all this trouble.

    *I added a poll because I am curious what most people do.
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  2. Member craigarta's Avatar
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    No but if you want to save some space you could always use Aud-X to make 5.1 MP3's
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  3. Member yoda313's Avatar
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    @craigarta - I'd check the stats for that popcorn unit to see if it supports 5.1 mp3 before going through the effort.

    Originally Posted by zsad
    Also maybe someone can convince me to just rip to the DVDs into ISO files and not go through all this trouble.
    Well the only thing I would mention is you obviously lose the menus if you convert the movie only to a compressed format. And do you want access to trailers and multi-audio tracks? And what about bonus discs?

    Other than that it is probably more economical to rip to a compressed format to save a bit on storage space.
    Donatello - The Shredder? Michelangelo - Maybe all that hardware is for making coleslaw?
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    I'm sure that this is answered somewhere else but I have been searching and searching and can't find anything. And if I do find something just about everyone says something different about the topic.

    I am ripping my collection of DVDs and doing some testing on converting them to h.264/MKV. All I want to do is remove the black bars and have an "almost" identical copy of the original. I am only considering compressing them to save disk space since I have over 400 DVDs that I would like to put on my WHS.

    I'm using Ripbot264 to do the conversion. I select Crop > Automatically. What do I choose for the Size? Or do I choose "Do Not Resize"?

    When I choose Do Not Resize then the video always looks stretched after removing the black bars so I am assuming that I will have to do some sort of resizing on it. But what should the size be? I notice that most mkv files I have looked at for comparison use 640xSomething. After reading dozens of posts I understand how this can't easily be answered but what is everyone else typically doing? I tried a 640x272 resize and this gives the correct aspect ratio but no matter what setting I use on the TV it just doesnít seem to display the same as the original DVD.

    I am testing with the Wedding Crashers DVD (it was just the first one I grabbed). I rip the DVD and then open the vob files in Ripbot264. I then choose Automatic under Crop to remove the black bars. The aspect ratio on the DVD case says 2.35:1. I assume that the original size of the video is 720x480 (from what I have read this could be an incorrect assumption). Automatic cropping in Ripbot264 is removing top (56), bottom (62), left (2), right (2). So Iím taking the original width of 720 and subtracting 4 (for the left and right cropping). This is giving me 716 for a new cropped width. I take 716 and divide it by 2.35 (the aspect ratio) and get 304 (approximately). So I should resize to 716x304? Is this correct or am I completely off? Or possibly doing no resizing is the correct way to go?

    Judging from all the posts on the issue and no clear answers Iím not sure if I am doing this correct. Mainly I would just like to know what everyone else does to get a good result in the end. The mkv files are going to be streamed to 3 different TVs via a Popcorn Hour media players.
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  5. Member craigarta's Avatar
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    Whoops didn't see that Popcorn thing. I just use a DVP620 player that does put the 192 Aud-X encoded MP3 through the old surround sound pretty good. I haven' tried the 128 version yet.
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  6. OK I voted AVI, but my encodes are most likely way different from others.
    Plus, I still have many backups still in ISOs

    I say my avis are different because I use Xvid at pretty high bitrates with AC3 audio. I like to keep the files around 2gb, but I have many that go to 3gb+. I like to shoot for at least 3000 to 4000kbs and in many case beyond. I have a player that has no problems playing very high bitrate encodes....Just got luky as it wasn't my intension when buying my system. Now I Know my encodes will play on the new WD player, so I might get it too
    tgpo famous MAC commercial, You be the judge?
    Originally Posted by jagabo
    I use the FixEverythingThat'sWrongWithThisVideo() filter. Works perfectly every time.
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    Originally Posted by zsad
    I added a poll because I am curious what most people do.
    where's the option for "put down the crack pipe"? you want to rip and convert 400 (!!!) DVD's to mkv?!? WOW!!!

    a little reality check: let's assume you have a fast system and can rip a dvd in 10 minutes flat (highly unlikely) it would take you 4000 minutes in ripping time alone, that's not including the time it takes to swap out one dvd, insert another and start the ripping program again. 4000 minutes is about 67 hours. each full length feature movie is about 90 minutes, at 400 dvd's that's 600 hours worth of video, assuming your pc is fast enough to encode h264 Full D1 content in real time that's roughly another 600 hours worth of encoding time, again not including actually setting up the encoder to transcode each dvd.

    then you "reason" that instead of keeping the dvd as you have ripped them, you will save space by converting them, but here's the problem, even with h264 the only way you are going to maintain maximum quality is if you use roughly half the bitrate that the original dvd used, so no matter which way you look at it you need at least 2 terabytes of hdd space just to store the converted dvd's, that's not counting room for swap, OS, any applications and a working folder so that you can rip and encode each dvd.

    i'm sorry but it's a ridiculous idea.

    however, if you are absolutely hell bent on doing this, i would recommend using mp4 and my personal preference for dvd to h264 encoding: mpegstreamclip with quicktime alternative 1.81, with all the filters installed and encoded using apple's h264 codec (i much prefer it to x264 and main concept's h264) if you are looking for a free solution or, better yet, if you're willing to spend a couple of bucks nero recode for ultra high quality avc encoding, not to mention fast.

    as i said personally i would recommend against your plan, but if you absolutely are determined to do it, that's what i would do.
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  8. Member yoda313's Avatar
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    I think another alternative altogether might be to get one of those dvd jukebox players.

    Don't they make ones that can store a 100 dvds?

    In your case you might want to buy 4 of them to cover your needs. Get an ir blaster and a video switcher and you are all set. In the end you preserve the original dvds exactly and you have them all neat and ready to go.

    Probably as expensive as the plan for setting up a network storage array. Plus you could count the time and frustration saved as a plus toward the cost of the dvd jukebox players.

    EDIT - Here's something:
    --------------
    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=4052713&type=product&id=1190678530457

    Pioneer - 301-Disc DVD Player
    Model: DV-F727 | SKU: 4052713



    Stumped over which features to choose? Our DVD Player Buying Guide can help.
    301-disc mega changer has an advanced graphical user interface to easily find the disc you're looking for
    Plays DVD, VCD, audio CD and CD-R discs

    600.00
    -----------------------

    make a note this only available online through bestbuy.com. Other high end electronic stores may carry these beasts in stock. This might make a lot more sense then converting hundreds of dvds.
    Donatello - The Shredder? Michelangelo - Maybe all that hardware is for making coleslaw?
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    Maybe youíre right. I just counted my DVD collection and it turns out I actually have about 530 (30 of which are HD DVDs). So the time it would take to rip and compress might not be worth it in the end. My main goal was to be able to play any DVD from 3 or 4 different TVs around the house. I know I could just get a DVD player for each TV but as I move more into HD I donít want to have to have to buy a Blu-ray player for each TV. Not to mention I want the flexibility to play my HD DVD collection also. Also when I add an Media Center PC somewhere down the line I can record shows and watch them from any TV. I think I will just start ripping to ISO format. 1TB drives are around $115 so about 4 of those would give me enough space for my current collection and room to expand a little. By the time I get the project completed 1.5TB drives will be cheaper and 2TB drives will be out so I shouldnít have any trouble expanding in the future. Plus ripping to ISO is very quick and can be done without any work from me other than switching out the DVDs from the drive. Using My Movies for Windows Home Server (http://www.mymovies.dk/my-movies-for-windows-home-server.aspx) all you have to do is switch the disk each after each one is done ripping and it does the rest.
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  10. Member
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    A dvd jukebox might be another idea but I loose the option to stream them to any TV in the house. I think ISO is the way to go at this point. That way I have the option to convert to something in the future if I need to.
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  11. Member yoda313's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by zsad
    A dvd jukebox might be another idea but I loose the option to stream them to any TV in the house. I think ISO is the way to go at this point. That way I have the option to convert to something in the future if I need to.
    Actually you could look into something like SLINGBOX devices that can stream to other tvs.

    ----

    But for convenience sake yes ISO ripping would be best as it involves no conversion and you preserve your menu structures if you so desire.
    Donatello - The Shredder? Michelangelo - Maybe all that hardware is for making coleslaw?
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