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Rip DVDs into Mac? How? Why? Quality? Functionality?
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Scarpad
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I gave up on this plan because I simply cannot see having a High Quality Hi Def Television and Watch Low quality MP4 or Divx encodes on it. I tried and after watching upconverted DVD's in all their glory I could not do it. THe only way I would consider it is simply preserving the Mpeg 2, but then it will be a never ending Hard Drive upgrade path, it's simply not worth it.
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tiiger
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Again, the main thrust of the original post was for me to rip the kids' DVDs, simply to save the discs from scratches (and because I can never locate them!)... I don't plan to rip all our high-quality non-kid DVD movies.

I'm thrilled about the new Intel mini, with Front Row, double the RAM, digital audio, remote control, gigabit ethernet, and whathaveyou.

Don't care one whit that it's not a gaming machine, as I'm not a gamer, and my kids don't even know what video games are; and if I got into games, I'd get an XBOX or a PSwhatever.... (give my kids three or four years before they're into it, and the technology will have changed 15 times, anyway.)

The machine is to play music, organize/store photos, organize/play the kids' movies (that aren't on the TiVo), and occasionally surf the web using the TV... With enough RAM, I'd assume that the integrated graphics card won't be an issue.

We don't even have an HD TV at this point... (But I keep looking at those that have DVI!)

We'll have a wireless keyboard and mouse, and the one cool thing I'd love to figure out how to configure would be a "wireless" secondary monitor for the kitchen (10 feet away from where the mini will reside) if we wanted to check a recipe on the web, control the music, or google something up, etc... (We generally have our laptops out anyway, so it's not critical...)

Just ordered a mini about 10 minutes ago, by the way, spec'd to the max.
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SOCOMRAIDER
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tiiger wrote:
We don't even have an HD TV at this point... (But I keep looking at those that have DVI!)

You can get a cable that is DVI on one end (for the Mini) and HDMI on the other end (for the TV). Most HDTVs now have HDMI as their connector. Plus I like the HDTVs that have either two HDMI inputs or have one HDMI and a VGA input. The reason I like if it has 1 HDMI and 1 VGA, is because if you get satellite/cable HDTV box, you want to hook that up through the HDMI input. The VGA on the TV won't have that much of a difference compared to the HDMI.
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solomalee
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 02, 2006 7:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ecking wrote:
tiiger wrote:

Does the mini even have the capability to output 5.1 audio?


The new intel mini does.


Hi, this is what I want to find out...are you 100% sure?

What about the input, can you feed in a DD5.1 signal (eg: From a settop box) and pass it out through the Digital out?

Solo
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 02, 2006 9:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

solomalee wrote:
ecking wrote:
tiiger wrote:

Does the mini even have the capability to output 5.1 audio?


The new intel mini does.


Hi, this is what I want to find out...are you 100% sure?

What about the input, can you feed in a DD5.1 signal (eg: From a settop box) and pass it out through the Digital out?

Solo

I don't see why it wouldn't send DD or DTS through the mini optical (headphone) jack. All other Macs with built-in optical jacks do it.

Now for passing a optical signal through the in-jack to the out-jack from another source. I'm sure there is a way to do it. But that is something you can either wait for people to try from experience, or contact Apple about the feature on the machine. (I'm still not sure why you would want to pass the optical signal through the machine to have it come out.)
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 06, 2006 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The intel Mac mini does do 5.1 out easily and even 6.1 (DTS-ES) with no problems either. I haven't tested input, but I think it would depend more on the recording software rather than the hardware since the software is going to need to know what to do with that optical data coming in.

With respect to the original topic of the thread, I've been using Ronin no Sakura's Forty-Two DVDVX Plus. (www.kaisakura.com) to rip all of the kids DVD's to less than 700Mb files. Works great for anime and regular videos. It looks decent enough on my 50" plasma. When there's a ton of action, you can see some artifacting but hey, they're kids, they don't really care. As long as you set it up to do a two-pass encode, the resulting files end up looking just fine for kids. (and most spouses too Laughing )
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Scarpad
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

See I've abandoned doing this unless I can do full quality Encodes which means huge storage requirements , to me buying a good HDTV Plasma or LCD and then watching Reduced quality encodes is just dumb. I want to use my display at it's full potential and that ain't Divx or Xvid, maybe it's closer to H264 and High res files but then your talking big storage again.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 8:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right. I think this has been mentioned before but no matter what you do, DVDs are already compressed AND lower res that most HDTVs anyway so they're never going to be super crisp and you will almost always going to see artifacting.

My point is that your kids won't care. At least mine don't...and it doesn't require them or me fishing around (and eventually scratching) DVDs. Just go to the movies folder using FrontRow and voila!

It won't be until you see hi-def DVD that you'll get a really clean picture. It will still be compressed, but you should see far less artifacting and the imagery should be stunning. If you think archiving standard-def DVDs requires huge amounts of HD space, wait until the high-def stuff comes out. Ouch!
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Scarpad
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jeremyh wrote:
Right. I think this has been mentioned before but no matter what you do, DVDs are already compressed AND lower res that most HDTVs anyway so they're never going to be super crisp and you will almost always going to see artifacting.

My point is that your kids won't care. At least mine don't...and it doesn't require them or me fishing around (and eventually scratching) DVDs. Just go to the movies folder using FrontRow and voila!

It won't be until you see hi-def DVD that you'll get a really clean picture. It will still be compressed, but you should see far less artifacting and the imagery should be stunning. If you think archiving standard-def DVDs requires huge amounts of HD space, wait until the high-def stuff comes out. Ouch!


I know 15-25 GB for a movie Ouch !

Even though DVD's are reduced, the image I get from my Decent Upconverting DVD player makes it hard to accept MP4 video.
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tiiger
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Got the mini yesterday... tried to rip a couple of movies...

Tried the Forty-Two DVDVX Plus that jeremyh mentioned, and couldn't make heads or tails of the interface. Couldn't tell which files I was supposed to import. (I'm fairly technically savvy. Go figure.) So I gave Handbrake a try, and presto. Danged easy.

It's a little choppy, so I still have to experiment with different export settings... changed the aspect ratio to conform with the originals, and that helped... need to see what the difference is between MPEG4 and h.264... If anyone has any thoughts on best quality techniques, I'd love to hear them. (After I submit this reply I'll bop around and see what I can find, too, obviously...)

I'm viewing it for now on an older 17" monitor, so we'll see what happens when we hook it up to the 27" (non-HD) TV using a DVI-to-S-Video adapter. (I'm not expecting greatness, but we'll play with it a bit and see what the best settings are.)

Also planning on using the optical audio out for video/movies, sending the signal to our Home Theater receiver (an all-in-one 5.1 sony thing that works fine for movies), and I'll use Airport/Airtunes to stream iTunes music to our Hi Fi. (Used Senuti to reverse-import all of my iPod's music.)

My wife has always had a Mac, but this is MINE. All mine. I love it.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 07, 2006 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tiiger wrote:
If anyone has any thoughts on best quality techniques, I'd love to hear them.

I usually have my target file size of at least 900MB or the average bit rate of 800-1000 kbps. (on handbrake)
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2006 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

solomalee wrote:
ecking wrote:
tiiger wrote:

Does the mini even have the capability to output 5.1 audio?


The new intel mini does.


Hi, this is what I want to find out...are you 100% sure?

What about the input, can you feed in a DD5.1 signal (eg: From a settop box) and pass it out through the Digital out?

Solo


this is true and not true.

i am still trying to figure this out myself.

I have an optical cable going from my intel mini to my 6.1 denon and if i put in a DVD and use DVD player it plays 5.1, 6.1, etc with no problem.

however, every other program only sends 2.0 sound and then the receiver turns it into 5.1 dolby PLII. alot of receivers do not show the actual signal it is receiving so people see 5 speakers light up or some other image on their receiver and they think it is 5.1 digital when really it is 2.0. for example, ESPNHD and other HD programming isnt always 5.1, alot of times it is 2.0 or in ESPNHD case 3.0 (circle surround). the receiver then does the work. digital, yes....5.1 digital not always

so, besides DVD player the mac mini only does 2.0 from what i can see. I have gone into all the sound settings i can find and any option to turn it to 5.1 and so on is greyed out.
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lvthunder
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 5:43 pm    Post subject: 5.1 sound Reply with quote

Do any of these MPEG4 formats support keeping the DD5.1 sound?
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microview
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 18, 2006 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recent purchased the intel MacMini w/frontrow. I had every intention of using it as my multimedia PC. I have alot of backed up (ripped) movies spanning several 400GB external USB drives. Yet, I have not found a way to playback movies that are raw ripped to a hard drive. And it seems frontrow is really just iTunes / iPhoto front end.

While I can play ripped movies from the DVD player by pointing the file open to the VIDEO_TS folder or creating an alias and attaching an action script to launch the movie with DVD player, I can not get frontrow to do the same. I sees the folder but simply opens it.

The only way around this is to
1. use handbrake to re-encode the entire movie into a mp4 saving some space but reducing the overal quality and taking hours per movie.
2. somehow trick frontrow into using another DVD player that can play raw ripped movies.
3. get frontrow to use action scripts when opening a folder.

If anyone has suggestions I would like to try them. I really want to keep my mac mini and use frontrow but I would hate to go back using MCE or some other Media software.
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lvthunder
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2006 12:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

microview,

As far as I know to get what you want to work you somehow have to get the video to work in Quicktime. Instead of converting the vobs to MP4 you might be able to convert it to mpg to get it to work instead.

If that doesn't work you might want to try equinux.
It's a Front Row replacement though but it has more features.
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