- The MPEG-2 compression format used in DVDs, though high-quality, yields rather large files—about 4GB for a couple hours of video.
- Current writable DVD media averages about $40 a pop—more expensive than most retail DVD movies.
- The MPEG-4 compression format, though visually inferior to MPEG-2, compresses at a far greater rate—generally, a full-length movie can fit on a single CD, with acceptable to good visual quality.
- Some French guy named Jerome Rota hacked Microsoft’s MPEG-4 codecs so that anyone with the right tools can use them to encode video files. For some reason, he named his hacked MPEG-4 codecs DivX ;-) (No relation to that crappy DivX DVD rental stuff Circuit City was trying to pull last year)
- CDRs are cheapy cheap.
- The DivX ;-) codecs
- A DVD decoder/ripper, such as DVD Decrypter
- A good encoding utility, such as Flask MPEG (watch out for the popup ad)
- A utility for mucking with the sound compression, like Virtual Dub
- Install everything, and clear out some disk space.
- Use DVD Decrypter to rip the movie from your DVD.
- Convert the ripped video to DivX :-) format using FlaskMPEG. Getting the settings right is a matter of trial and error, but try this for starters:
Use Decode Audio Mode and choose 44,100 KHz
Select PCM compression for audio
Select DivX ;-) low motion for video
Set keyframe to 1
Set destination size to something smaller than the default, say, 640 x 400
- Wait. Wait a long time. On my 600 MHz Celeron overclocked to 900, converting a 30 minute episode of Cowboy Bebop took about an hour and a half.
- The resulting file should be pretty small, but you will need to further compress the audio to get it smaller. Use VirtualDub with the following settings:
Set video to direct stream copy. With this setting, the video stream will basically be ignored by the program, since we’re only processing the audio at this step.
Set audio interleaving to 500 ms before video start and interleave audio every 500 ms
Set audio compression to DivX ;-) Audio at 64 kpbs, 44 KHz
If the video was originally using 48,000 KHz audio, set audio conversion to convert to 44,100 KHz
Set audio to full processing mode
- Save the AVI and wait again. This part shouldn’t take as long—on my PC, this step takes about seven minutes for a feature length movie.
- Try to play the video, and if it works, burn it.
What is the best Bitrate for a movie?Hazel will follow with the moral arguments for and against ripping digital media.
Are you looking for an easy way to piss me off big time? I can’t stand questions of this kind.