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  1. Member
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    Hi -

    I am looking to surprise my parents for xmas by taking all their dvds , ripping them and putting them on a large exhd so they can hook that up to their xbox and watch all their movies. now my only issue/question is what quality should I do that at seeing as how they have a 52" plasma tv and I don't want the image to look degraded/pixely. I find that xvid/divx looks ok whne ripped at around 700mb but that is only small size, if I try an play that full screen on my 22" LCD monitor it looks kind of crappy. So should I go for more abour 2-3gb to get a really , like I am watching the DVD file?

    Also I would do mkv/h.264 but xbox doesn't support it at this time, sadly. (or at least I can't get it to work)
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  2. Always Watching guns1inger's Avatar
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    I encode Divx avis at 720 x nnn at a quality value of around 75 (AutoGK) or 2.2 (Xvid4PSP) and get reasonable quality (certainly far better than the crappy 700 MB movies you see lying around the place). I don't believe Divx or Xvid are capable of producing truly high quality output because of inherent flaws in the encoding method. Even at very high bitrates they are prone to blockiness during high motion scenes or dark murky scenes. H264 is far superior in that respect.

    If you can get an average encoding in the high teens (1800 - 2000 kbps) then you are probably getting about as good as you will. If the Xbox can play high resolutions or higher bitrates then give them a try. Most standalones however start to choke if the bitrates go over 2k for extended periods.
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  3. Member edDV's Avatar
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    Describe all this from the parents prespective.

    How do they benefit ?

    What is the display?

    How do they get thier TV? OnAir? Cable? Satt? Other?
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  4. Member
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    Originally Posted by edDV
    Describe all this from the parents prespective.

    How do they benefit ?
    they benefit from the fact that they don't have to stream from my computer anymore which they do a lot. they love watching movies and its inconvenient to have 100+ dvd lying around which are ugly and take up space.

    What is the display?
    52" Akai Plasma TV, but I believe I said that already.
    How do they get thier TV? OnAir? Cable? Satt? Other?
    They had to cut back and sell a lot of stuff to pay their mortgage, first thing to go was satellite tv, followed by other tvs and xbox ( which I re-bought for my dad recently) they only have one of those digital boxes and an antenna, thus why they stream all my stuff.
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  5. Member rickydavao's Avatar
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    If your parents' XBox is modded and has XBMC (XBox Media Center) installed, then you can use h.264 in an mp4 container, but you have to be careful how you encode it. I use XviD4PSP (available free through this site), import my DVD, and use the MP4 Apple TV profile. For Denoise/Sharpen I generally use DVD Excellent, then MPEG2Fix for Brightness/Contrast. Use any of the X264 profiles for encoding (they all provide about the same quality of output, but going from Turbo to Extreme - fastest to slowest encoding - gives a progressively smaller output file). AAC-LC ABR 128K for the audio is fine, and it will retain the 6-channel audio if it is present (however, you would need to convert 5-channel to stereo if playing on an XBox 360). The Apple TV preset for h.264 encoding is certainly not the best for AVC encoding, but the original XBox will play it without stuttering, and compared to DivX/XviD, the quality is much better (especially on noisy sources) and the file sizes will also be smaller. Give it a try ... just my 2 cents
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  6. Member edDV's Avatar
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    worth much more than 2 cents rickydavao.

    The XBox360 has connection options that may improve the picture quality on a 52" plasma. Avoid using composite/S-Video unless there is no other option. Be careful of image burn from static menus. Early plasmas can suffer permanent image burn.

    YPbPr analog component should look better. HDMI if available better still.

    Another option is VGA if the TV has a PC port. The VGA option can go up to 1360x768 and is progressive RGB. It may look better than 1080i/720p/480i on an older HDTV.
    http://hardware.teamxbox.com/reviews/xbox-360/40/Xbox-360-VGA-HD-AV-Cable/p1/
    http://www.amazon.com/Xbox-360-VGA-HD-AV-Cable/dp/B000B6MLTG
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  7. Member
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    Originally Posted by rickydavao
    If your parents' XBox is modded and has XBMC (XBox Media Center) installed, then you can use h.264 in an mp4 container, but you have to be careful how you encode it. I use XviD4PSP (available free through this site), import my DVD, and use the MP4 Apple TV profile. For Denoise/Sharpen I generally use DVD Excellent, then MPEG2Fix for Brightness/Contrast. Use any of the X264 profiles for encoding (they all provide about the same quality of output, but going from Turbo to Extreme - fastest to slowest encoding - gives a progressively smaller output file). AAC-LC ABR 128K for the audio is fine, and it will retain the 6-channel audio if it is present (however, you would need to convert 5-channel to stereo if playing on an XBox 360). The Apple TV preset for h.264 encoding is certainly not the best for AVC encoding, but the original XBox will play it without stuttering, and compared to DivX/XviD, the quality is much better (especially on noisy sources) and the file sizes will also be smaller. Give it a try ... just my 2 cents
    thanks for all that info. not I haven't modded their box, they are picky about that stuff and I don't think XBMC is for the 360, is it? though I haven't tried h264 after the update last week so I might give it a go again.
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  8. Member rickydavao's Avatar
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    Yep, a 360 can easily play h.264, as long as you've updated all of its software (if you haven't, it'll prompt you to do so anyway). Use the same software, XviD4PSP, and just change the Format to "MP4 PS3 or XBx 360", change the Encoding to any of the x264 options (the Q21 options will give you the smallest file sizes at decent quality), and leave the audio at default, but be sure to edit the audio options and set to re-encode to 2-channel audio (I prefer Dolby Digital Pro II) because the 360 won't handle 6-channel aac audio streams. Save your project and encode away! I didn't necessarily assume a 360 because I still use a regular XBox to stream video (we have a 360 also) in our home - streams XviD/DivX flawlessly, as well as Apple TV encoded h.264 streams and a lot more ... just won't handle the more advanced levels of h.264 due to it's slow processor. But you can pick up an old XBox for $15-$20, get it modded for another $10-$20, and makes a great, cheap media server ... plus plays all the old XBox games!
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  9. Member
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    Originally Posted by rickydavao
    Yep, a 360 can easily play h.264, as long as you've updated all of its software (if you haven't, it'll prompt you to do so anyway). Use the same software, XviD4PSP, and just change the Format to "MP4 PS3 or XBx 360", change the Encoding to any of the x264 options (the Q21 options will give you the smallest file sizes at decent quality), and leave the audio at default, but be sure to edit the audio options and set to re-encode to 2-channel audio (I prefer Dolby Digital Pro II) because the 360 won't handle 6-channel aac audio streams. Save your project and encode away! I didn't necessarily assume a 360 because I still use a regular XBox to stream video (we have a 360 also) in our home - streams XviD/DivX flawlessly, as well as Apple TV encoded h.264 streams and a lot more ... just won't handle the more advanced levels of h.264 due to it's slow processor. But you can pick up an old XBox for $15-$20, get it modded for another $10-$20, and makes a great, cheap media server ... plus plays all the old XBox games!
    I never thought to do that it sounds like a great idea. I was getting to the point where I was going either build them or buy them a small media center pc and put all their movie on that.

    I don't think size will be an issue as I am going to get them a LeCie 1TB drive so I have room for better quality files and later to add. I think maybe the problem I was having with h264 was the audio was not right and that is why it would not play.

    I am going to try and do it the way you posted. Thanks very much for the information and help. I really appreciate it.
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