AVS Forum banner
1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Getting ready to take the HTPC plunge and am confused about a couple of common software packages. Initially I was under the impression that to rip my blu-rays to a HD I'd need AnyDVD-HD running in the background while using a program like ClownBD. To play them back as ISOs I'd need VirtualCD to mount the image (in W7MC) and then TMT3/5 or PDVD10 for playback.


Later on I came across some data saying that since AnyDVD-HD strips the AACS encryption from the image you don't need a licensed player (TMT/PDVD) for playback.


Then I read that regardless of AACS encryption you need a licensed player to access BR menus and whatnot, which is why XBMC won't natively play blu ray.


So, really, what is it? The more research I do the more confused I get. I haven't committed to any particular setup yet (W7MC v XBMC, TMT v PDVD, etc) but given the price of TMT, PDVD, AnyDVD-HD I'd like to make sure I know what my software package will be before I head down any particular road to avoid unwelcome surprises.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
339 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by joebloggs10 /forum/post/19571151


Getting ready to take the HTPC plunge and am confused about a couple of common software packages. Initially I was under the impression that to rip my blu-rays to a HD I'd need AnyDVD-HD running in the background while using a program like ClownBD. To play them back as ISOs I'd need VirtualCD to mount the image (in W7MC) and then TMT3/5 or PDVD10 for playback.


Later on I came across some data saying that since AnyDVD-HD strips the AACS encryption from the image you don't need a licensed player (TMT/PDVD) for playback.


Then I read that regardless of AACS encryption you need a licensed player to access BR menus and whatnot, which is why XBMC won't natively play blu ray.


So, really, what is it? The more research I do the more confused I get. I haven't committed to any particular setup yet (W7MC v XBMC, TMT v PDVD, etc) but given the price of TMT, PDVD, AnyDVD-HD I'd like to make sure I know what my software package will be before I head down any particular road to avoid unwelcome surprises.

You don't have to rip to ISO, you could use a program like handbrake or makeMKV to rip to MKV and still keep the video/audio HD. Most people use AnyDVD-HD because it is generally the program kept most up-to-date with encryptions for new bluray discs, but prgrams like makeMKV can also be used. When ripping with AnyDVD-HD you can remove the AACS encryption, but to play the menu system on the bluray you currently need a commercial player (TMT/PDVD). Otherwise if you're using XBMC native playback you will only get the main feature with none of the extras available.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,650 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by joebloggs10 /forum/post/19571151


To rip my blu-rays to a HD I'd need AnyDVD-HD running in the background while using a program like ClownBD. To play them back as ISOs I'd need VirtualCD to mount the image (in W7MC) and then TMT3/5 or PDVD10 for playback.


Later on I came across some data saying that since AnyDVD-HD strips the AACS encryption from the image you don't need a licensed player (TMT/PDVD) for playback.


Then I read that regardless of AACS encryption you need a licensed player to access BR menus and whatnot, which is why XBMC won't natively play blu ray.

Here's the low-down starting from the basics:


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 both folder format as well as ISO. 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.


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.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Awesome help, thank you everyone. I'd like to keep the rips as close to original as possible so I can not only stream the movies but also burn backup disks (since not all TVs will have streaming and kids can be rough on disks). With that in mind it looks like I'll have to suck it up and purchase two commercial programs, since mkvs aren't an option (and I can't spend the time fiddling with them to get them perfect).


It's good to know that folders can play menus and whatnot- I had thought that you had to use isos to get menu support.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
So, I just tried ripping Undercover Brother DVD as a trial run. I am currently using DVDDecrypter (though I do have a copy of the free DVDFab). When I ripped it to HD I went e:/Movies/Undercover Brother (2002). It ripped all sorts of video_ts files directly into this folder.


Am I missing audio_ts files?

Would it be more proper to rip to path e:/Movies/Undercover Brother (2002)/Video_TS?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,890 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by joebloggs10 /forum/post/19576657


So, I just tried ripping Undercover Brother DVD as a trial run. I am currently using DVDDecrypter (though I do have a copy of the free DVDFab). When I ripped it to HD I went e:/Movies/Undercover Brother (2002). It ripped all sorts of video_ts files directly into this folder.


Am I missing audio_ts files?

Would it be more proper to rip to path e:/Movies/Undercover Brother (2002)/Video_TS?

no, you just need the video_ts folders, which should contain a bunch of .vob files.


you should have a video_ts folder under every movie title you you rip, this will get complicated when you start on tv series dvds and individual episodes.


just so you know you 7MC will have a problem with the video_ts folder unless you hack the registry or use the personal preference of many here, media browser.


i have given up on video_ts and now use makemkv to rip all my disks, it handles dvd and bluray the same way, it will also eliminate problems you will run into when you go to rip a tv series dvd.


its just much easier having the movies files in one .mkv container instead of a bunch of video_ts folders and .vob files all over the place.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,650 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by mike_311 /forum/post/19576792


just so you know you 7MC will have a problem with the video_ts folder unless you hack the registry or use the personal preference of many here, media browser.

What hack?

I believe you are talking about XP MCE which reqd. the hack.

7 MC has out-of-the-box DVD library. All you have to do is point it at the folders containing your movie collection.

In any case, Media Browser or My Movies is highly recommended.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mike_311 /forum/post/19576792


its just much easier having the movies files in one .mkv container instead of a bunch of video_ts folders and .vob files all over the place.

I've been using VIDEO_TS for years with nary a problem.

Copying them, playing them, streaming over wireless; all of it simply works.

The movie collection has to be in its own (name) folder, whether its ISO or Folder format. So how does it matter whats inside the movie folder.


But to each his own I guess.


Though I do agree about the TV show format. If a nice layout is needed, then each episode needs to be an individual file.

I tried it and liked it very much. But I changed over to backing up entire discs as folders again. With individual files, support for chapters, subtitles & audio commentary tracks is lost. Not to mention the special features. I traded in the nice visual interface for the features.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top