After reading a lot of posts on this site and various articles on the internet I am somewhat confused. Maybe someone can help me out and point me in the right direction.
I have a NAS that I liked to store a bunch of movies on and stream them to various devices. Right now I have a Samsung Blu Ray player as well as a couple of Playstation 3s. I can convert a standard definition movie to .mpeg format, put it on the server, and it streams fine to those devices.
However, is that the right file format for these devices and others I may buy in the future? I may purchase WD Live or Roku in the future. I played with .mkv format but the Playstation's can't handle that forma, but the Blu Ray player played them fine. If I use basic .mpeg files converted from the movies .vob files do I lose sub titles, 5.1 audio format, etc? From what I read those are all contained in the .mkv container?
So, I figured the most "common" format - both now and in the future - is .mp4. Will that contain sub titles and other audio streams? I am mostly concerend with keeping the best quality for the videos, so would I use Handbrake or Freemake Video Converter to convert the files from .vob to .mp4? I tried that once using Freemake, but the files went from 4 GB down to 1.8 GB, so there seems to be a lot of compression and possible quality loss.
So far I am only talking standard definition videos, not Blu Ray. I am not too concerned about file size or a long conversion process. If I use Handbrake, what would be the best settings to use.
My kids also have Mac Airs that they watch movies on. Streaming to those isn't quite as important but would nice.