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post #1 of 344 Old 01-10-2002, 07:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi all,

I thought I'd start a new thread here for those of us who are using "extracted" ReplayTV mpegs outside of the ReplayTV environment.

For some time now, I had been using the Extract_RTV program with my 3000 series Replay. (removing the drive to stick into a Win2K system for extraction) About 95 percent of the time I was able to make quite nice "mini-dvds". Mostly used the ReplayTV low quality mpeg, which happen to be frame compatible with the DVD specs for 1/2 D1. Only had to re-encode the audio from 32 kHz to 48 to make it fully compatible. Very seldom did I have any problems and when I did, it was usually at a "cut" portion of the Mpeg where I removed a commercial. I attributed that to possibly a bad job done by my Mgeg editor, and it only happened maybe 1 out 10 times.

Now fast forward to today with our new ReplayTV 4000 series. I have a 4080. I'd like to hear comments from anyone who is using those mpegs (from the 4000 series) and how they are working. I've been having a lot of trouble with my "extracted" mpegs from the new 4080. I'm using the ReplayPC.exe program to do this. When I first tried this (with one of the very early versions of the software) everything worked just fine. I could play the Mpegs in my Windows environment and even made a few test Mini-DVD discs. Once (after editing) I just burned the mpeg in it's raw state across three discs only wanting to store it for later use. On a whim I stuck the disc into my Sampo DVD player and the thing came up with a directory of the disc (which had the "saved name" of the mpeg on it in a menu like thing. Clicking on the mpeg listed, started the player and to my amazement it played the whole disc perfectly. So I was pretty happy having found a way to simply "store" my movies temporarily until a later time when I had more time to author a "proper" Mini-DVD.

Over the last couple days .. however .. I'm now finding that my replaytv Mpegs are really pretty messed up. I'm getting large "marcro-blocks" when viewing in various editors, and problems with playback in the PC environment. Haven't tried authoring any as I can't get the mpeg cleaned up enough for my DVD authoring software to accept it.

FWIW, I have had some kind of major problem with my computer recently and there's a good possibility that or some change caused by that may be the problem.

Meanwhile, I like to hear comments from anyone else, as to whether or not you are having trouble or what-ever.

Thanks ...

Rich
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post #2 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 11:33 AM
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as per the info in other threads, the replay is storing information in DVD format (720x480) and does not need to be "fixed up"... however, even without the fix up bit i have been running into problems. A large chunk of my problems is that I am a moron, the next largest chunk is that i have read a whole bunch of info off of www.vcdhelp.com and it is all just a blur in my mind. I dl-ed all the apps, and I am never sure what i did last time, so I am having a hard time making progress on anything. Also, without a clear cut idea of what i am trying to accomplish, I probably won't get good results.

but, from what i remember, this seems to be my problem.

working with a MPEG file which has not been fixed up. when i run it throught TMPG, it only sees about half of it... now it might be stopping at the first commercial break, but i don't know.

when i try to de-multiplex and re-multiplex, the resulting file won't work.

I know that the mpg file is a DVD format, but how close is it to "True" dvd.

next questions, is the Medium a SVCD format? and if so can i just cut and burn it?

any info is good, and thanks to those who have made this possible.

nate gall
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post #3 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 12:10 PM
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This will be a very helpfull thread, it'd be nice to keep the MPEG manipulation focused. I've had zero time to do much. I did pull a file from my 4040 with Replayer.jar and could not import it into Adobe Premiere (but I too am a moron and haven't worked with Primiere enough to get a good template set up, it may work). I was able to view the clip in Media Player on XPpro. I was able to import it into DVDit PE and create a DVD image. It was easy, however DVDit transcoded it to create the image and even with a 2Ghz P4 it takes about 6 hours to do the job. I did read that someone burned SVCD's easily and hopefully more directly. For TV archiving I'd probably settle for less quality.

If people would post the steps they used (what programs)

The time it took per step

The hardware (if speed is influenced by CPU)

Again, for TV I'd like to grab a file, snip out the fluff, and burn it in as short a time as possible...

"Beneath the surface of the mud...... there's more mud still.......Surprise" -- CSN
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post #4 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 05:21 PM
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This is slightly off the subject, but since you guys are familiar with extracting MPEG files, I was wondering if you have ever experienced the following problem. On two different Replay 3060's, I have had consistent problems with the duration of the video stream being truncated when playing the extracted files using the Womble MPEG2VCR editor. The problem mostly occurs when I have recorded shows in high-quality mode. The Womble editor will report, for example, that the duration of a show is 25 minutes, when in reality, the running time is 60 minutes when the show is played from ReplayTV (I have also verified that a number of other editing products--such as Adobe Premiere-- believe the clip is 25 minutes long). I have read numerous explanations on this bulletin board about ReplayTV momentarily pausing its recording because of a fluctuation in the tv signal strength, yet in many cases, the video I am seeing appears reasonably normal when viewed directly from ReplayTV. The extract_rtv MPEG's with abnormal durations are almost unusable because 1) I cannot access certain parts of the video since the editor is convinced that the stream is shorter than it is, and 2) the audio is way out of sync with the video. Any comments or suggestions (I've tried Zones-777, cooling the unit with a fan, etc.) would be appreciated.
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post #5 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 05:29 PM - Thread Starter
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What is the date of your Womble Mpeg editor? On the title bar at the top you should see it. If it's not November 2001, then you need to update.

Also, I've not been able to get Womble's MPEG2VCR editor to properly edit ReplayTV mpegs in the Windows XP environment. Win 2K, or ME are fine.

I believe there might be some issues with the 2/4 GB limitations using a FAT 32 file system. None of my extracts have been that large as I use mainly the low and medium. But I believe you probably want to be using NTFS for the least amount of trouble.

Rich
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post #6 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 07:00 PM
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yep, even though I started this whole ReplayPC thing, my 4080 is my first PVR, so I'm a total newbie when it comes to editing and manipuling mpeg streams.

Those of you in the know, please enlighten us!

What are the sugested ways of archiving large mpegs for thoes of us without a DVD burner.

DivX is probably a good option if your targeting playpack on the PC, but what is the best destination format for real DVD players?

Who thinks that DVD-R will begin to showup in power machines for Christmas 2002? I do!

mlinehan out

mlinehan
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post #7 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by mlinehan
Who thinks that DVD-R will begin to showup in power machines for Christmas 2002? I do!
Well, they are already in iMacs, so in the PC world in force in 12 months.... sure!

hehe :)
-q3ded

Share your DVDs, now testing at:
DVD Jones
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post #8 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 08:44 PM
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OK, so I downloaded my MPEGS, medium quality (replaypc .3) now
what? I tried DVDIT PE that came with my DVD Burner (pioneer A03) but it says there is no decoder for the file. ROXIO Video Pack is a very cool program, for VCD and SVD it turns out, even though they have a DVD option. I'm new at the Video Disk burning game, but everything I've seen so far is a pain.
What would be your sequence of events if you were going to burn a DVD either with menus or that starts automatically when inserted. Can anyone enlighten me...

Thanks

-= NFW =-
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post #9 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 09:47 PM
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FYI,
I have had success with the following:
1) Download from the 4k using REPLAYPC (with the fix-up option).
2) Edit commercials out using Womble 3.0 and then record with the PS option. (Takes about 8 mins. for 1/2 hour show on a P3-933.)
3) Master to DVD (Pioneer A03) using Ulead DVD Movie Factory.
4) Play on my stand alone DVD player.

-- Mike --
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post #10 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 10:44 PM
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mkruss, Great info! Could you detail a little more?

What quality level was the Replay clip?

Womble 3.0, just download it and import away? What is the "PS" option? Then Womble took 8 minutes to process an output file or burn? Is Womble 3 around $300?

That output file was then loaded into Ulead DVD Movie Studio for mastering (like adding menu buttons etc) or burning?

I've got an A03 and Ulead Movie Studio 5 with DVD plugin but it wouldn't let me import my medium quality Replayer.jar extracted clip. Would you be up to trying the Replayer Java app for extract just to see if it works the same?

So a 30 minute clip from Replay to DVD is _______ Minutes

This is so close to my best hopes for extracting!

"Beneath the surface of the mud...... there's more mud still.......Surprise" -- CSN
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post #11 of 344 Old 01-12-2002, 11:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Nice to see some interest. First, I have to say we are not far behind the Macs. Pioneer's DVD recorder for the PC market can be found for under 500 $ now. HP has one in that price range as do a couple other manufacturers.

But the media. (IMO) opinion is the deal killer. Even if you buy in bulk it's going to cost about 8 bucks a disc. I'm sure they will fall in price as the sales increase. I've been burning all kinds of "digital" media for some time now. VCD, SVCD, DVD content on CDR discs and even some tape.

Way back I started doing VCD. Did every episode of the original Star Trek, with menus, and interviews with actors, writers and directors. Was able to fit it all on one 650 MB CDR. The quality was good enough to be able to sit back and enjoy the shows on my TV.

Then came SVCD and now I'm playing with "mini-dvds" More on that later.

On to the nitty - gritty. The 2000 and 3000 ReplayTV Mpeg had three frame sizes of Mpeg-2 variable video bit rate and all had 32 kHz of audio. The three frames were (low) 352x480 (1/2 D1) at 1.8 M/bs nominal video bit rate. (Medium) 720x480 at 4 Mb/s and High which was 720x480 at 8 Mb/s

The new 4000 series have the same frame sizes and bit rates, BUT they now have 48 kHz audio which is what you need if you want to author DVD of any type.

I've found the lowest quality to be a good trade off when balancing quality vs size if you are limited to CDR discs. After editing out commercials, you'll end up with 43 minutes mpeg. The RPTV at it's low setting will end up around 600 Mb total. And the quality when viewed on a TV (played back via a stand alone DVD player) is surprizingly good. At least as good as a decent SVCD.

I have several hundred archived shows, mostly Sci-Fi series and some movies. I've been at this for a while. For me this whole process has to be quick, inexpensive and of a quality that I can enjoy on a 32 in TV. I've got the full deal down to under 20 minutes per episode. That's from the minute I sit down at the computer to when I get up, with a "mini-dvd", burned and labeled, and ready to stick in the DVD player.

A word of warning .. Not many stand alone DVD players will play DVD Title Sets burned to CDR media. But the list of ones that can is growing daily. I have a Sampo 620 that does a decent job playing back any kind of mpeg burned to CDR. I've tested it with 8 Mb/s DVD D1 frames. No problem. Except that at those parameters I have to stick a new disc in every 12 minutes. <grin> That's why I'm doing the low quality. One episode per disc.

So ... here's what I do. For the old 2/3000 series, I have it's hard drive mounted in a removable drive rack that matches a similer setup in my computer. I pull the mpegs off using the Extract_RTV program. I've never needed to do anything other than re-encode the Audio. I do have the latest Womble editor (version 3.11 ... the November 2001 version). That one will re-encode the audio to 48 khz while it's assemblying the editied mpeg without have to de-multiplex the two into elementary streams so you can re-encode the audio. It's all one step now. Pulling the mpeg off the drive takes a couple minutes. Editing and saving with Womble takes about 10 to 12 minutes. I use SpruceUp DVD authoring with custom templates all set for each series I'm doing. So it only takes a few minutes to have it compile the mpeg and save to a title set. Then Nero burns the Title Set to a CDR in about 5 minutes. Having the Womble editor re-encode the audio adds a few minutes to the time. I'm working with some pretty quick equipment. 2 gHz computer, 4 disc RAID array, 16 and 20 x CDR burners. I use Nero as it has the ability to burn to multiple CDR burners at the same time. I usually burn all these in multiple sets for a couple friends who can't get the cable TV coverage I have.

Now with the 4000 series, it's even easier. No need to putz with the audio. The 4K units are already 48 kHz. There's also no need for any patching or fixing of the mpeg out of the ReplayTV. Not with the 4K units. I've burned the raw mpeg straight to the CDR without editng and it worked just fine. There's a couple things I've found however. One drove me crazy the last couple days, which is what prompted me to start this thread. Every mpeg I pulled off the 4K unit was being rejected at one point or another from my authoring software. I have since found out two interesting things. First my video card was actually causing a problem. I was getting macro-blocks showing up at random and some artifacts. I also was having trouble with my computer often not recognising the AGP video card and trying to install "new hardware" in the form of a standard PCI video card. That prompted me to swap out the video card. Guess what ? The raw ReplayTV mpge was once again perfect.

That brought up problem number two. The mpeg as checked out of the replay was fine. But I do a lot of testing and other work with my computer so I often use different operating systems from time to time. To make a long story short, I found that Windows XP was creating several problems with my ReplayTV mpeg. All my system and data discs in the NLE machine are NTFS. Normally I use Windows 2000 for video editing. I became suspicious when I switched to XP and started having trouble again with my SpruceUp not accepting the mpeg. I found two problems .. one was that the mpeg was getting glitched during the download. I noticed while watching the KB counter going as it downloaded, that every once in a while the counter would stop. In Win2K it was just a steady flow, from start to finish. Something was interupting the flow. It was not the replay. Oh by the way, you don't want to be extracting a high quality Replay Mpeg if the Replay is in the middle of (or about to) do a recording. That also caused me problems.

So I've gone back to Windows 2K for all the work .. downloading and editing. And never had a problem again. Last tip .. Womble doesn't work well in XP. Put a perfectly good Replay Mpeg in, do some edits, and the final file is quite a mess. Of course all this could be "system specific" to my weird computer setup. But if you are having trouble, and are using software or equipment like mine .. this may help.

Because of the time savings I'm seeing with the new ReplayTV 4000 series, I've started archiving some of my more favorite shows in medium quality. Using 830 Mb discs (with Nero's and my burner's over-burning capabilites) I can generally fit the 43 minutes onto two discs. And the playback is pretty impressive.

So now my quest is to find a "multiple disc" player that CAN decode DVD title sets burned to CDR. That'll keep me happy until the DVD-R media comes down to a couple bucks a disc.

FWIW I've found what works best for me is SpruceUp DVD authoring. Very fast .. decent features, but unfortunately was bought out by Apple and is no longer being sold in the PC market. If you look around you might find it somewhere yet. Womble is my editor of choice for all my mpeg work. And their web site is incorrect. The August date release they note on their web site is most likely for the Mpeg-1 only editor and not the Mpeg2vcr. The big editor has an updated version dated November 2001. (look in the top title bar in the GUI and you'll see the date) There's been some enhancements and bug fixes between August and November. One was that they fixed a "post edit sync problem" they were having with the ATI capture card generated Mpeg-2. The other was to enable the "saving" of the edited mpeg where you could change the audio and not have to re-encode or touch the video OR de-multicplex the streams to do the audio edit separate.

Oh .. one last bit of information. If you are going to go the "mini-dvd" route and split up the movie into two parts .. have fun. You'll find it's not easy to make the "split" where it won't destroy the "flow" of the show. It just seems that the darn commercial breaks (an obvious good spot to cut) are never at JUST the right place. So you end up with something like 480 MB on one side and 780 on the other. If you try to move the spit to the next commercial break so as to balance the amount on each CD .. you sometimes can't. It's feast or famine for one of the discs. Of course it gets a lot worse if you are only working with 650 meg discs. There's not enough "extra" space to move that break point around. If you have a good burner and good burning software that'll over burn .. then the 700 and 800 and even 830 Mb discs make things a little easier. But make sure you test them first on your DVD player. Not only can many burners NOT over-burn, but many players also can't handle the over-burn during playback. I have a couple decent Plextor SCSI CDRW's and they are one of the best, BUT not that great for serious over-burning. I picked up an "LG" 16x10x IDE with burn proof technology (I did a lot of research and this one was highly touted for it's over-burning abilty) It has no trouble hitting 800 Mb (on 830 mb discs). By the way .. you can get those 830 Mb 99 minute discs at "CompuUSA". Unfortunately they come in 10 packs with jewel cases, for around 15 bucks or even less on sale. I have no need for the cases and would rather buy in bulk a save a few pennies. So far I've gone as far as 800 mb without a problem. Haven't had the need to go further yet.

Rich
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post #12 of 344 Old 01-13-2002, 05:59 AM
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Rich -

It's Aaron - been quiet for a while, but been having a lot of fun making DVDs!

The Pioneer A03 can now be had for UNDER $400 and discs are now down to the $2.95 mark -- so no better time to make the switch! DOUBLE-SIDED DVD-R media is only $5.95 I've read reports that people are pretty happy with the company:

http://www.cd-recordable.com/

Check Pricewatch for the latest prices on the DVR-A03 - my check yielded $379!!

I have added to my arsenal of DVD equipment. I now also have an HP DVD+RW drive and also the stand-alone Philips DVDR1000 DVD Recorder in my home theater for "casual" dvd recording - I'm quite happy!

I've graduated to higher-end DVD authoring and am now using Pinnacle Impression DVD Pro to make really nice advanced menus. I've made a number of vacation dvd's as well as ReplayTV and other DVDs.

Aaron

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post #13 of 344 Old 01-13-2002, 06:37 AM
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Anyone know of a mpeg viewer that will work with mpegs from the 4K and runs under Linux?

I tried vlc, but I don't get any audio.

--joubert
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post #14 of 344 Old 01-13-2002, 09:12 AM
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Ed Rempalski,
To answer your questions,
1) The extracted video was medium quality.
2) Yes Womble MPG-VCR is a $300 program. The demo on their site is limited to mpeg-1, but if your search the net you will find an older version of the demo that supports mpeg-2. In Womble, you load the Replay mpeg file, then you edit out the commercials and finally use the "record" function to reprocess the video. The "PS" option is the setting in their software record video options that will output a DVD compatible "Program Stream".
3) The new output file loads fine in the Ulead Movie Studio 6.5 with DVD plug-in and also the Ulead DVD MovieFactory. The DVD plug-in and MovieFactory are virtually the same software with MovieFactory having a few more options. Here you create menus and then follow the prompts to record the DVD.
4) I have stayed away from the java video extractor since I really didn't want to load the Sun java engine. I was waiting for the pure Windows GUI software to be released.
5) The time it takes for all this to transpire:
- Run Replaypc to retrieve the guide.dat then Guideparser to
the show data. Review the show file names and write down
the file name (2 minutes)
- Run replaypc to retrieve the 30 min. file (10 minutes)
- Run Womble to edit out the commercials (5 minutes)
- Save (record) the show in Womble (8 minutes)
- Run Ulead DVD MovieFactory & setup a simple menu (2 minutes)
- Record the DVD in MovieFactory using a 1x DVD-RW
(15 minutes)
Total = 42 minutes

I hope this helps,

-- Mike --
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post #15 of 344 Old 01-13-2002, 02:21 PM
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This weekend I've been <ack> USING <ack> (as apposed to developing) ReplayPC, and I don't mind saying "Damn, this is COOL!" even if it is a bit of patting oneself on the back.

You guys probably won't believe this but, <hangs head in shame> I don't even own a DVD player yet!

Most people here have been processing the 4K mpg files to VCD, SVCD, or mini-DVD format, but I targeted a DivX AVI instead.

I pulled a 2.8GB mpg (Saturday Nigh Live, 90 min, med qual) from the 4080.

The used Fask XMpeg 4.2a with the DivX 4.12 codecs to transcode the mpg from 4Mbps 720x480 to 780Kbps 352x240 using the 2 pass variable bit rate method.

I'm not sure how long this took since I did it overnight, but Flask was achieving 20fps on the first pass anyways. If the 2nd pass was also at 20fps, the total time to transcode should have been about 90min * (30/20) *2 = about 4.5hours

The resuting file was 596MB, and the degredation from the orignial was barely noticable. DivX 4.12 is a trully amazing codec.

I then pulled the 596MB Divx into Virtual Dub and deleted the comercials droping the file to 65minutes 434MB.

Damn VirtualDub can do this fast when you set it to directly connect the input and output codecs.

I have seen the future, and it is home video editing!

mlinehan
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post #16 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 01:13 AM
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mlinehan - You ought to be patting yourself on the back, This is just UberCool!

mkruss - Thanks for the details!

I have ulead video studio 5 with DVD Plugin which is their current version. I went ahead and got their DVD MovieFactory cause it's UI is much simpler to use. I will get Womble after I make sure that it's OK in XPpro (with NTFS). For now I used a simple editor that I downloaded for free from Haupague's WinTV-PVR site. It's called NanoPEG and it does simple cuts.

I took a 30 minute show (6 min download Med Quality).

Cut the commercials (5 Min) now it's 20 minutes and change.

Created the output file (25min on P4 2Ghz XPpro) Womble sounds better here.

Pulled it into DVD MovieFactory and burned a DVD (10 minutes, Pioneer A03).

It plays on my PC! Well... Not so clean... after playing the whole clip I found a problem. The show plays 10:20 till the first commercial cut and dies. (both PowerDVD and Windows Media Player Die). If I fast forward I can FF thru the whole clip and it plays the whole way. If I stop just after the commercial, I can watch the next segment. Sooo my NanoPEG simple cut editor breaks the stream at the cuts without error in it's output run or DVD MovieFactory's burn.

Looks like I can easily take straight shows with my current scheme, but will Womble solve my editing problem (or is it XP's fault?), and if not, would I be able to return Womble.

My old Pioneer DVL-700 DVD-LD Combo Unit choked on it (showered with huge pixel blocks), but I was expecting that. So it's off to the store with a test disk to find a new player for the HT...

You might consider the Java App, loading the Sun Plug-in is a snap, and the Replayer app is very slick (Thanks Honus!!). It displays all shows in all Replays in the house in a blink. Highlight the show you want and get it.

Too Much Fun, Too Little Time.. Burned Out.. Good Night.

What I need right now is a good hot "Cup'o'Chinos".

"Beneath the surface of the mud...... there's more mud still.......Surprise" -- CSN
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post #17 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 05:33 PM
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Thanks Ed! :D

I noticed that your using the Pioneer DVR-A03 DVD-R/RW drive.

I discovered the A03 last night while looking into DVD-R drives, it shure looks like a bute to me, but what do I know! **NEWBIE**

This drive hit the market at $1K about 6 months ago and is allready down to $400-$450 if you don't mind ordering online.

Can those with DVD-R experience enlighten us with the fruits (or lemons) of you experience?

Ed: are you happy with your A03? If you went out to get a DVD-R drive now, what would you buy today?

Seems to me investing in a DVD-R drive would be a slick way to avoid the whole transcoding problem completly.

mlinehan

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post #18 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 06:01 PM
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mkruss - can you post the link to the older Womble demo that supports mpeg-2 . I can't find it :(

(should not be a problem since it's a demo ;))

mlinehan - The new G4 Mac's ship with the Pioneer DVR-A03 DVD-R/RW drive installed (Apple calls it the 'SuperDrive). Not only does the thing records and plays DVD R/RW, but also regular CD R/RW (up to 8x speed). I use it on the Mac with Toast software but I am thinking of taking it out of the Mac and mount it in a Firewire case, so I can use it on the PC too.

Simply said - it's very reliable and I would not buy anything else if I needed to make that decission. Best description: Swiss Army Knife for burning :D
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post #19 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 06:06 PM
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mlinehan,
I love my A03. The reason that the prices have gone down is that HP (and others) have released their competing DVD+RW drives. The Pioneer A03 is a DVD-RW drive. The difference is on the RW side. The -RW disk will play in most existing stand alone decks. The +RW is a new format that won't play in stand alone players until manufacturers start supporting it. They both record to DVD-R (write once) disks. If your player will play VCD's recorded on CD-RW, it will probably play DVD-RW disks.

I use -RW disks to test my editing on my stand alone player before I commit it to a DVD-R disk. I can then erase the -RW disk and reuse it.

You might check out www.goroyalpc.com. They have the Pioneer A03 boxed at $382 and a Utobia (Pioneer A03 clone) bare drive for $349.

I was at a computer swap in LA this weekend and the media has really gone down in price. Several vendors had DVD-R disks for under $4 and DVD-RW disks for around $6. There is an online vendor www.cd-recordable.com that sells DVD-R disks for $2.99. I have purchased from them, but with shipping, it is just as cheap to buy them at the swap.

-- Mike --
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post #20 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 06:13 PM
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videogeek,
I have my A03 mounted in an external firewire box on my PC and it works great. The only problem is that Nero my favorite PC burning software doesn't do firewire under Windows XP. It worked fine under ME. Go figure. All the DVD mastering software that I use see it just fine.

As for finding the old version of Womble, sorry dude, I don't have a link.

-- Mike --
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post #21 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 06:17 PM
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Sorta related to this topic, do any of you know of a freeware utility that will examine an mpeg file and report the picture size and sampling rate of the file?
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post #22 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 06:46 PM
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Thanks, Rich, for the suggestions regarding my problem with the duration on extracted Replay MPEG-2 files. Unfortunately, even after trying them all, when I use the high-quality setting on my 3060, the duration of the extracted clip still gets messed up. I recorded a half-hour show last night that reported a duration of about 2 minutes in Adobe Premiere as well as with the Womble editor. Since I generally don't have these problems with the medium-quality setting, I'll just use that since it's reliable. I did dowload the 11/2001 version of the Womble editor, and also tried extracting the files under Windows 2000 (I have a triple boot setup--Win XP, 2000, and 98SE). I use an NTFS partition when extracting because 2-hour shows recorded at high quality require over 5G of disk space. I haven't noticed any differences between Win XP and Win 2000 when using the Womble editor, but what I typically do is extract portions of a show in MPEG2VCR to separate files, and convert the MPEG-2 files to AVI files in Premiere 6 so that I have more flexibility with editing. I store the edited program either on mini-DV tape or convert it back to MPEG-2 to store on DVD.
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post #23 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 10:35 PM
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Mlinehan, I got the Pioneer because it was the only game in town. As stated before me, the DVD-RW vs DVD+RW is the issue. The newer drives by HP, Philips, and Sony are DVD+RW. . Their +RW media is less than -RW media. The claims are that DVD+RW is MORE compatible with more standalone DVD Players. They claim that the Pioneer DVD-RW's had to have new firmware in able to burn in "compatibility mode" to make DVD playable disks.

I like my Pioneer, it seems to work fine, but if I were buying again I would really study the following links and make an informed decision. By what I've read, maybe DVD+RW is going to be the one..

http://www.dvdplusrw.org/video/comparison.html

http://www.dvdplusrw.org/

http://www.vcdhelp.com/

Good Luck

"Beneath the surface of the mud...... there's more mud still.......Surprise" -- CSN
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post #24 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 11:09 PM
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I love haveing the extract. On a daily basis I copy shows from my replay to my laptop to watch them at work. I can usualy go thru about and hour and a half to two hours in a normal work day.
The Robin Williams Inside the Actors Studio had me laughing so loud my co-workers came into my office to watch it with me.
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post #25 of 344 Old 01-14-2002, 11:33 PM
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Way Cool, now how much can we crunch a file to download it into my iPAQ to take on the road? I've seen some full length films crunched to like 50meg or so from filmspeed.com but their site is down.

These guys have trailers and such;

http://www.pocketrocketfx.com/

But what would it take to convert a Replay Extract into a PocketPC 2002 compatible format, playable with the pocket Windows Media Player 8?

It'd be great to pop what ever would fit on a 128MB SD Card and go.

More tinkering ahead!

"Beneath the surface of the mud...... there's more mud still.......Surprise" -- CSN
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post #26 of 344 Old 01-15-2002, 01:56 AM
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I couldn't resist, The PocketPC Works Great!!! and the encoder's free

Went to Microsoft and got the Windows Media Encoder v7.1 here

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/win...m7/encoder.asp


Then got the iPAQ encoder profile here (HP's and Casio's are here too)

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/win...ket/create.asp

Installed the encoder to its default directory.

Installed the iPAQ profile (ipaq.prx) into the same directory as the default profiles (eg. C:\\Program Files\\Windows Media Components\\Encoder\\Profiles

Windows Media Encoder is a very nice GUI encoder. I used it's wizard, pointed it to a 30minute show with commercials (938MB).

Selected the iPAQ profile, it encoded while showing the video in a window (no audio). It indicated that it would take 21 min and it took 21 min.

The result was a 49meg .WMV file.

I coppied that into a compact flash card in about 2 min.

I popped the card into my iPAQ 3870 and opened Media Player and the show played just fine. It looks supriseingly good!!!

Edit the commercials and you could get 1.5 hours of shows on a 128MB Flash Card.

This stuff just gets better every day!


There is a command line encoder with the newest VBR technology plus batch file processing capabiliy for you bit weenies. It's available here. I haven't messed with it.

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/win...8/encoding.asp


Last but not least. If you do the math, you could pop a 1 gig IBM Micro Drive into the iPAQ and carry just over 10 hours of video in the palm of your hand!

"Beneath the surface of the mud...... there's more mud still.......Surprise" -- CSN
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post #27 of 344 Old 01-15-2002, 08:13 AM - Thread Starter
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I noticed the mentions of Womble and XP here.

First let me start off by saying that I "have" been using Win2K for all my NLE work. Recently got Win XP Pro. When using the ReplayPC to extract the mpegs with WinXP I'm havng a lot of problems. The time is much slower than in Win2K. Also instead of a steady count on the Kb's received counter, it pauses every few seconds for about 1/2 second. Then the mpeg is bad with many blocks and stutters.

Next, when using Womble in WinXP Pro, I find it screws up the final saved clips and makes them un-acceptable to my DVD authoring program.

Then for some strange reason my authoring program will no longer work in Windows 2K. Arrrghhh.

So I have to use the ReplayPC in Windows 2K. Use the Womble in Windows XP (where it works fine) then use the SpruceUp in WinXP . Very strange stuff.

Question: is anybody using Womble with success in Windows XP?

The Womble people themselves say it's not supported.

(yes .. I tried running Womble in XP under "Win2K compatibilty mode") That won't work either.

Rich
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post #28 of 344 Old 01-15-2002, 09:31 AM
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mkruss and all,

I bought the Pioneer DVR-A03 back in the spring (for $1000 no less) and have had a lot of fun creating DVD's of not only ReplayTV material, but home movies from DV tape as well. It's a great unit and makes DVD-R discs that play in many players and DVD-RW discs that suprisingly play in a decent amount of players as well.

To date, I have found that all players that are able to read DVD-RW discs have been able to read DVD+RW discs as well. The issue is one of "reflectivity" and "compatibility". DVD-RW and DVD+RW use phase change technology, resulting in a disc which is less reflective than a DVD-R disc and thus playable in less players.

I have since bought an HP DVD+RW drive as well. This is to compliment the Philips DVDR-1000 stand-alone DVD+R/RW recorder I have in my home theater. Now I can take discs from the stand-alone and edit them on the PC and rewrite them. I find now that I do my "tests" on DVD+RW because the write speed is much quicker (2.4x vs. 1x on the pioneer). When happy with the result, I burn the final copy onto DVD-R for the broadest compatability. I usually make copies of home movies and send them to family members.

Both DVD+RW PC drives as well as my DVDR-1000 stand-alone are firmware upgradable to the new DVD+R discs that will be available shortly. These discs should prove more compatible (along the lines of DVD-R) because of better reflectivity - and actually (might) give DVD-R a run for it's money, especially if DVD+R discs become as cheap as DVD-R discs.

DVD+RW has one GREAT advantage over DVD-RW, more importantly for stand-alone recorders... DVD+RW discs can have files (and individual video selections) erased from the disc WITHOUT erasing the entire disc. This is a GREAT advantage for stand-alone recorders - since you don't have to wipe all your shows off the disc. Because of this, and the fact that DVD+RW stand-alone recorders use variable bitrate recording for all recording modes (1-4 hours) discs recorded at all speeds are playable in most DVD players.

Pioneer's DVR-7000 stand-alone recorder can only create "compatible" discs in 1 and 2 hour "compatible" mode which uses constant bitrate encoding. Using DVD-RW discs, individual programs cannot be deleted from a disc and be compatible with stand-alone players. This alone I believe will make DVD+R/RW the format of choice for stand-alone recorders.

In the PC realm, it's a different story. You can create video content at whatever bitrate you want and burn a DVD-RW OR DVD+RW disc that is playable in any player that reads rewriteable discs.

I like both formats. Both make discs I (and my family members) can play in their machines. I bought the Philips DVDR-1000 stand-alone recorder for the many casual TV programs I like to archive. I am glad I made that choice and stuck with DVD+R/RW vs. buying the Pioneer (DVD-R/RW) or Panasonic (DVD-RAM/-R) stand-alone recorder (don't get me started on that one!).

Not that Philips has a sub $1000 DVD+R/RW home recoder coming out, I suspect the many more people will become interested in replacing their VCR with this wonderful technology.

Regards to all,
Aaron

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post #29 of 344 Old 01-15-2002, 09:43 AM
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I've chosen the VCD format for archiving my ReplayTV content. Most of what I record is hour or half hour shows, so it works well for me. Here's the process I used for archiving some episodes of "Enterprise":

My system is a PentiumIII 800MHz running WindowsME. All of my ReplayTV content is recorded at medium quality.

1. I extract the show in raw fromat using ReplayPC.

2. I compress the video to MPEG1 with TMPGenc 2.02. Using the included VCD template and the low quality setting. It takes around 3 Hours to compress 1 Hour of content. The one hour show which started out at 1800MBs is now a lean 600MBs.

3. Using Womble MPEG1VCR I edit out the commericial content and record the content to a VCD file. This takes about 5 minutes.

4. I burn the resulting MPEG to VCD using Nero. With all the standard settings. I takes about 5 minutes to validate the MPEG before you can burn the disc.

That's pretty much it, sometimes a file on the replay has corrupt audio and I have to do some dubbing magic to get everything to work, but usually I won't bother unless I really want to keep the show. I've tried using VCD Creator to burn the MPEGs, but I could never get the discs to play. Nero works all the time.
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post #30 of 344 Old 01-15-2002, 12:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by nkopas

2. I compress the video to MPEG1 with TMPGenc 2.02. Using the included VCD template and the low quality setting. It takes around 3 Hours to compress 1 Hour of content. The one hour show which started out at 1800MBs is now a lean 600MBs.

3. Using Womble MPEG1VCR I edit out the commericial content and record the content to a VCD file. This takes about 5 minutes.

Wouldn't it save you time if you cut the commercials with MPEG2VCR and then do the encoding? I realize that program is more expensive, but it should be worth while.
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