When you rip a DVD that you own, do you encode into separate files for multiple target devices, due to storage space and resolution differences? You can fit more movies on an iPad if they're encoded via Handbrake with the iPad or iPhone profiles rather than the AppleTV profiles, but to get them onto the iPad you have to add them to the iTunes library, which gets bogged down with multiple files for the same movie...makes scrolling through the list of movies on the AppleTV a pain. I'm thinking of encoding to the AppleTV profile and just going with that, and fit less movies on the iPad.
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I just convert to one file.
You could make smaller "appletv"-presets outputs also. Lower the bitrate/increase constant quality value a bit under the video tab. (Lower quality, more compression artifacts)
What's the difference between the various Handbrake Apple presets I'm missing? I tested withj an NTSC 16:9 DVD and they all do the same thing in the resizing department (ipod preset excluded). They all use mod2 anamorphic encoding. Same resolution. No resizing by default.
They all have the various filters disabled by default, except for the AppleTV3 preset that has the Decomb filter enabled.
They all use variable frame rate encoding (set to a peak frame rate of 30fps).
The iphone and ipad presets downmix the audio to stereo AAC at 160kbps.
The Apple TV presets all re-encode the audio as stereo AAC and include the original AC3 5.1ch audio, so you end up with the audio (kind of) duplicated.
iphone = High Profile 3.1, CRF22
ipad = High Profile 3.1, CRF20
AppleTV = Profile/Level Auto, some restrictive advanced x264 settings, CRF20
AppleTV2 = High Profile 3.1, CRF20
AppleTV3 = High Profile 4.0, CRF20
The main differences in respect to file size seems to mainly due to the iphone preset using a lower quality setting than the rest (CRF22..... lower values = higher quality = larger file sizes) and the fact the ipad and iphone presets don't include the original audio..... but a downmixed to stereo version.
Aside from the original AppleTV preset, for which more restrictive encoder settings are used, the lowest common denominator is High Profile 3.1 (I doubt it'd make a difference to quality compared to High Profile Level 4.0). You could increase/decrease the CRF value as you wish. If you don't care about also having any original 5.1ch audio, use the iphone or ipad preset. If you want the original 5.1ch audio as well as a stereo AAC version, use the AppleTV2 preset. You can of course change the types of audio manually under the audio tab, although I assume the ipad/iphone only supports stereo AAC.
Considering there's no much difference bewteen the Apple presets I'd be going for a single encode which plays on all devices. You could encode a second time at a lower quality to output a smaller file size for the portable devices, but I wouldn't bother. I'm not using the latest version of Handbrake (I'm using 0.9.9.530) but I'd assume the presets haven't changed.
The only thing I don't understand (I don't use Handbrake much myself) is why the AppleTV3 preset is the only one with the Decomb filter enabled by default. Anyone know what the logic would be there?
I had a play with Handbrake, and when using the AppleTV2 preset to encode interlaced video the output wasn't de-interlaced and no de-interlacing flags were set. Why, I don't know, but the output wasn't very nice. I don't understand why some presets don't have the decomb filter enabled.