Best combination for blu ray ripping/viewing - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 06:58 AM - Thread Starter
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I have been using mymovies for years, and have had a trouble free experience ripping my dvd collection to video_ts folders with dvdfab, and viewing them (thru mymovies) in windows media center. I have about 120 blu rays that I want to do the same with. I would like to do a 1:1 conversion, and be able to view them in wmc as well. I know that powerdvd and total media theater are the popular recommendations so, 3 questions:

1) How does the process between dvd playback and blu-ray playback differ (blu ray needs to be "mounted" in a virtual drive)?

3) Which is the easier software to use:powerdvd or total media theater?

4)do either powerdvd or tmt integrate with wmc?

Thanks so much in advance. Any help is greatly appreciated...
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post #2 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 07:11 AM
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I recommand using JRiver Media Center 17 to view both DVD & Blu-ray. Works great for me! I also use DVDfab for ripping DVD and Blu-rays.
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post #3 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 07:34 AM
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Windows has dvd playback ability built into it. You can use WMP/WMC to do that. You can play discs or folder structures. Additionally you can create iso files and mount them for playback.

Bluray is not a native Windows capability. To play a bluray disc as you would in a stand alone player, you need software. Power DVD, Total Media Theater, and Win DVD are the only three available.

You can use other software to play the files that are on the bluray disc, but you will not be getting the menus that way. Its sort of a hacked together solution - using one piece of software to break the encryption and another to pick which video file on the disc and then play it.

If you want the full use of your discs buying one of the three options I listed is the only way. They can all play the folder structures (I think - I know TMT does) and can play mounted isos.

TMT5 has by far the best WMC integration. It launches a plugin that very closely mirrors the look and navigation of WMC's default player. I am not totally sure how My Movies launches external players, but I was able to set Media Browser to launch that plugin to play my bluray disc folders.

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post #4 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 08:55 AM
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I use AnyDVD HD to create an ISO of the bluray. I have WMC with Mymovies and TMT 5 for playback. Also have Virtual CloneDrive installed for mounting the ISOs. It is a seamless experience since TMT5 has a WMC interface.
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post #5 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 09:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEARCH1990 View Post

I have been using mymovies for years, and have had a trouble free experience ripping my dvd collection to video_ts folders with dvdfab, and viewing them (thru mymovies) in windows media center. I have about 120 blu rays that I want to do the same with. I would like to do a 1:1 conversion, and be able to view them in wmc as well. I know that powerdvd and total media theater are the popular recommendations so, 3 questions:
1) How does the process between dvd playback and blu-ray playback differ (blu ray needs to be "mounted" in a virtual drive)?
3) Which is the easier software to use:powerdvd or total media theater?
4)do either powerdvd or tmt integrate with wmc?
Thanks so much in advance. Any help is greatly appreciated...

All optical media, whether CDs, DVDs, BDs or HD-DVDs, have their own file/folder structure for the files on the disc.
For DVDs it is VIDEO_TS & AUDIO_TS.
For BDs it is BDMV & CERTIFICATE.
This is known as the native folder format for that media type.
When these are transferred to a hard drive, you have the option to keep the folder structure intact.
For DVDs, mostly all software media players available today can play the native folder format from the hard drive (called as playing from folders).
Windows Media Center has had built-in support for DVD playback since XP MCE and has gotten progressively better.
For BDs and the now-defunct HD-DVD format, the commercial software players disabled folder playback from the hard drive.
So as a workaround, the folders on the hard drive can be wrapped in an ISO container. This ISO container can then be mounted in a virtual optical drive (free program) so the OS is tricked into recognizing the mounted ISO file as an actual optical disc (when it isn't). Once the OS sees this ISO as a disc, the software players would play the file.
The ISO format is used as a workaround for players that won't play BDs from the hard drive.
There are three major commercial programs to play BDs, PowerDVD (PDVD), Total Media Theater (TMT), & WinDVD (WDVD).
PDVD and TMT are the most advanced (& popular) ones since they had a head start on others.
In addition, Nero used to have a BD/HD-DVD plugin for their Nero 8 software player but they dropped support in later versions.
TMT is the only commercial player which supports playback of folders from the hard drive. If you wish to use PDVD or WinDVD you will need to go the ISO route.
There is a free player called MPC-HC (Media Player Classic - Home Cinema) based on the classic media player (in older Win OSs).
The free player plays only the main movie title, whether its a disc or ripped folders on the hard drive. It doesn't support menus so you can't play any extras or access special features with MPC-HC.
To get full menu support, a commercial player is necessary.

To backup BDs to the hard drive while keeping the folders intact you have to use AnyDVD or DVDFab. AnyDVD runs in the background and neutralizes the protection on the discs. In addition it also incorporates a ripper to back up the disc to the hard drive in folder format or in ISO format.
DVDFab is a full featured program that is an active ripping program with many features. It can rip both DVDs and BDs in BDMV folder format, ISO as well as MKV. In addition, it allows you to choose a single/or more movie title/s with just one (or more) audio track/s & subtitle/s. It also allows you to compress the disc to a single layer DVD/BD as well as convert the disc to other file formats including portable media formats.

You can rip the main movie from a disc without the menus & special features in any of the three formats.
In addition you can apply compression and reduce the size of the file, no matter which format you choose.
It is possible to have a Compressed or Uncompressed Main Movie video track in BDMV or ISO or MKV format.

One reason to keep the folder format or ISO is to keep multiple audio tracks, subtitles etc. It works flawlessly since you are not changing any information from the original file. MKV can do multiple audio tracks and subtitles too but sometimes users have encountered problems with subtitles.

It is also possible to have a Compressed or Uncompressed version of the entire disc, as is, in BDMV or ISO format. However, if you do decide to rip any disc intact in its entirety, your only choice is BDMV or ISO.

The easiest route to take is ripping with DVDFab in folder format and playing with TMT in Windows 7. TMT has a built-in plugin for Media Center so using Media Browser/My Movies (free media organizing plugins for MC) you can organize your movie collection as well as launch TMT using your remote control for a seamless experience.

However, both programs are commercial, not free and have to be purchased.

For a free route, MKV file format is very popular and supposedly very easy. I have never gone that route so have no idea, however there is an excellent guide and many threads about MKV ripping and playback from BDs.
There are some limitations with MKV namely menus, extras and subtitle support but you will have to read up about those.
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post #6 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 10:11 AM
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hirent, how come you don't mention JRMC 17 as a Blu-ray player? I use it to play my ISO files.
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post #7 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 11:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audioseduction View Post

hirent, how come you don't mention JRMC 17 as a Blu-ray player? I use it to play my ISO files.

Can it actually play bluray discs with menus? Or does it play them the way MPC-HC does? If it is licensed bluray software thats news to me and pretty cool.

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post #8 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 12:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Hirent,

Great info, thanks so much! one question:
If I understand correctly, I can use dvdfab to make an iso that is a 1:1 duplicate of the blu ray (menu's and all), mount the disk in a virtual drive, use mymovies to launch tmt, and this should be seamless. is this correct?
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post #9 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 12:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEARCH1990 View Post

Hirent,
Great info, thanks so much! one question:
If I understand correctly, I can use dvdfab to make an iso that is a 1:1 duplicate of the blu ray (menu's and all), mount the disk in a virtual drive, use mymovies to launch tmt, and this should be seamless. is this correct?

Yes, it is seamless.
However, TMT can play folders, no need of ISO.
Every movie will reside in its own folder so whether you have BDMV folders or ISO inside the movie folder is immaterial.
ISO just adds another step which is not required.
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post #10 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 12:16 PM
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Are you using My Movies with Windows Home Server? If so, My Movies will rip the blu-ray disks, tag them, and add them to your library just by inserting the disk into the server (requires AnyDVD HD).

If you're not using WHS, My Movies will prompt you to play or rip disk to your library when you insert the disk with WMC running.

It will rip to Blu-ray folder format (no ISO mounting required).

I used this setup with Total Media Theater through WMC. Works pretty flawlessly.
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post #11 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 12:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Hirent,

So when ripping in dvdfab, I should use bdmv?

Jcruse,

No I dont use a whs. Just seperate external/internal hard drives (about 8 tb) connected to a pc.
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post #12 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 12:31 PM - Thread Starter
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jcruse,

Sorry, just reread your post. I don't have enough points to use mymovies as the ripper. Maybe I should pay for them...
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post #13 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 12:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Jcruse,

Actually, I posted a similiar question on mymovies forum, and Carl suggested iso...
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post #14 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pittsoccer33 View Post

Can it actually play bluray discs with menus? Or does it play them the
way MPC-HC does? If it is licensed bluray software thats news to me and pretty cool.

I use it to play from BDMV folders. I play the movie without goimg to a menu. Have you ever tried JRMC?
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post #15 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 12:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEARCH1990 View Post

Hirent,
So when ripping in dvdfab, I should use bdmv?

Yes, native folder format (BDMV) is the best format.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SEARCH1990 View Post

jcruse,
Sorry, just reread your post. I don't have enough points to use mymovies as the ripper. Maybe I should pay for them...

MyMovies doesn't actually perform the ripping. It simply automates the ripping process.
Personally, I don't see the need to pay for something like this.
I like to have control over my PC.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SEARCH1990 View Post

Jcruse,
Actually, I posted a similiar question on mymovies forum, and Carl suggested iso...

There is no reason whatsoever to choose ISO over BDMV.
It only makes sense when the players don't play BDMV.
TMT does play BDMV.
Why introduce an unnecessary step in the playback chain when it is not required?
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post #16 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 02:15 PM
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WinDVD is a PITA, it does not catalog or provide thumbnails to view your movies by. You have to browse to the file to play it. TotalMedia Theatre dose not auto import your movies and I tried it today and it seems to be a bit unstable, sometime it locks up when I try to play a m2ts file.
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post #17 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 04:24 PM - Thread Starter
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hirent,

Thanks again for the advice!
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post #18 of 22 Old 06-07-2012, 04:28 PM
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I rip to ISO because XBMC can play ISO's and I am not sure about folder format on Blurays...
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post #19 of 22 Old 10-06-2012, 07:40 AM
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Guys I have a Mac and agree that DVD Fab is a great program; what I have been doing is ripping my Bluray with DVDFab to H.264 and then streaming it from mac via - external HD to my PS3 via PS3 media server. Anyone else doing this?

The only downfall - if it is a downfall - is that I have to scroll via PS3 in folder/file format to locate my movies. I wish there was a way to get thumbnails (like itunes) instead of the file format so I can browse thumbnails.

My last question to all of you what is your best format for ripping for quality/file size - I am not talking about ISO as I know that is exact copy - I wanted to know if you all prefer - mkv, m2ts, mp4, H.264????????
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post #20 of 22 Old 10-07-2012, 09:18 PM
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The current PowerDVD 11 build works fine with folders. I think itwas fixed prior build. It always worked if you drag and dropped onto PowerDVD window, but now you can select the drive/path.

I've not used 12 - no desire for the cinevirus.

I just copy the folder structure using AnyDVDHD.
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post #21 of 22 Old 10-07-2012, 10:31 PM
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ISO is useful for 3D as ripping to folders increases the storage space required by up to 2x compared to the original disc (or ISO).
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post #22 of 22 Old 10-08-2012, 07:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IanD View Post

ISO is useful for 3D as ripping to folders increases the storage space required by up to 2x compared to the original disc (or ISO).

Why does 3D make a difference on that? I haven't ripped any 3D movies, but I never saw a difference between BR ISOs and folders.
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