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N0ddie
Nov 18, 2011, 04:12 AM
Just ordered an ATV2 this morning so should be here in the next week or so. I have just started ripping DVDs to my iMac then "Handbraking" them to Apple Universal format, importing them into iTunes and syncing them onto our iPhones and iPad. Movies work perfectly on these devices.

My question is, will having the movies in Apple Universal format look "pants" on my big LED TV ie. will I have to reformat the movies to ATV2 option to get the best picture and sound and will ATV2 format still work on my IOS devices?



tbayrgs
Nov 18, 2011, 07:09 AM
Just ordered an ATV2 this morning so should be here in the next week or so. I have just started ripping DVDs to my iMac then "Handbraking" them to Apple Universal format, importing them into iTunes and syncing them onto our iPhones and iPad. Movies work perfectly on these devices.

My question is, will having the movies in Apple Universal format look "pants" on my big LED TV ie. will I have to reformat the movies to ATV2 option to get the best picture and sound and will ATV2 format still work on my IOS devices?

Based on the devices in your signature (assuming the iPod is last generation), all of your devices are capable of playing video encoded using the :apple:TV 2 preset in Handbrake, which should yield betters results across the board vs. the Universal setting. Even if your iPod is an older generation, I'd still encode using the :apple:TV 2 preset with a second copy at the iPod/iPhone preset--the :apple:TV 2, iPad 2 and iPhone 4 are so much more capable and by using the Universal setting you are essentially limiting the quality of your encodes based upon the lowest common denominator.

N0ddie
Nov 18, 2011, 08:10 AM
Based on the devices in your signature (assuming the iPod is last generation), all of your devices are capable of playing video encoded using the :apple:TV 2 preset in Handbrake, which should yield betters results across the board vs. the Universal setting. Even if your iPod is an older generation, I'd still encode using the :apple:TV 2 preset with a second copy at the iPod/iPhone preset--the :apple:TV 2, iPad 2 and iPhone 4 are so much more capable and by using the Universal setting you are essentially limiting the quality of your encodes based upon the lowest common denominator.

Splendid. Cheers for that. ATV2 setting it is then. :cool:

Steppy
Nov 23, 2011, 04:55 AM
I'm getting an ATV2 as a Christmas present and also have a question about the Apple TV2 preset in Handbrake.

I have converted a couple of MKV files which I normally play in my Samsung Blu Ray Home Cinema via a USB Dongle, but I am confused that the handbrake converted m4v file shows up as only 2 channel stereo in the VideoSpec app and not the original 5.1 channels of the MKV

From reading through this forum I have found that two tracks are created - 1st track - AAC Stereo/Dolby PLII & 2nd track - AC3 Pass-thru, but I am a novice at audio file types, so I dont really understand whats going on.


Am I missing something?

Thanks :)

tbayrgs
Nov 23, 2011, 10:23 AM
I'm getting an ATV2 as a Christmas present and also have a question about the Apple TV2 preset in Handbrake.

I have converted a couple of MKV files which I normally play in my Samsung Blu Ray Home Cinema via a USB Dongle, but I am confused that the handbrake converted m4v file shows up as only 2 channel stereo in the VideoSpec app and not the original 5.1 channels of the MKV

From reading through this forum I have found that two tracks are created - 1st track - AAC Stereo/Dolby PLII & 2nd track - AC3 Pass-thru, but I am a novice at audio file types, so I dont really understand whats going on.


Am I missing something?

Thanks :)

If you used the Apple TV 2 setting without changing it, there should be 2 audio tracks. You are only seeing the 2 channel stereo track as it is the default audio--you need to manually change to the 5.1 track when playing your file. If you have no interest in using the stereo audio, you could deactivate it with Subler or even remove it with something like MP4Tools.

Steppy
Nov 24, 2011, 02:43 AM
If you used the Apple TV 2 setting without changing it, there should be 2 audio tracks. You are only seeing the 2 channel stereo track as it is the default audio--you need to manually change to the 5.1 track when playing your file. If you have no interest in using the stereo audio, you could deactivate it with Subler or even remove it with something like MP4Tools.

Thank you for the explanation, so VideoSpec can see one channel and that's what was confusing me.

I have read that its a good idea to change one of the settings in ATV from Auto to ON to force ATV to pick up the 5.1 track. Not all of the clips I will be streaming will be 5.1, so I may have to see if I need to fiddle once I get the unit.

Its good to know that I can carry on and convert my files ready for its arrival. I am surprised that when I convert the MKV's they are quite a bit bigger once they have been converted into m4v :confused:

NightStorm
Nov 24, 2011, 07:13 AM
If you used the Apple TV 2 setting without changing it, there should be 2 audio tracks. You are only seeing the 2 channel stereo track as it is the default audio--you need to manually change to the 5.1 track when playing your file. If you have no interest in using the stereo audio, you could deactivate it with Subler or even remove it with something like MP4Tools.

You could remove it with Subler as well. That said, I'd leave it alone... the stereo track consumes little space and helps ensure compatibility (both with devices and across ATV software updates).

slothrob
Nov 24, 2011, 10:17 AM
I am surprised that when I convert the MKV's they are quite a bit bigger once they have been converted into m4v :confused:
Are you using the aTV2 setting untouched, or are you adjusting the Constant Quality setting? I'm surprised that they are noticeably larger.

Steppy
Nov 24, 2011, 10:28 AM
Are you using the aTV2 setting untouched, or are you adjusting the Constant Quality setting? I'm surprised that they are noticeably larger.

The settings are untouched as I wouldnt know what they did :o

Will check again tonight with some more MKV's. I know some AVI's were bigger e.g 140MB went to 189MB

Now I understand about the stereo I can get on and convert my collection in readyness for the arrival of ATV :D

hafr
Nov 24, 2011, 12:04 PM
The settings are untouched as I wouldnt know what they did :o

Will check again tonight with some more MKV's. I know some AVI's were bigger e.g 140MB went to 189MB

Now I understand about the stereo I can get on and convert my collection in readyness for the arrival of ATV :D

This is why I don't use Handbrake to convert files (only to make a single file from a ripped DVD). For instance, an XviD film that weighs in at 700 MB with (for the size) good picture quality and so on can be as little as 600 MB after being converted - with no noticeable deterioration of the picture. But if the video quality is bad, with visible blocks and what have you, the converted file could be over a gig.

It seems like the settings need to be very specifically set depending on the source.

Personally, I use iVI (get it in mac app store for less than five bucks). In my opinion it's easier to use, the end result is more even across the board and it even looks up and adds the meta data in the process...

slothrob
Nov 24, 2011, 01:02 PM
T
Will check again tonight with some more MKV's. I know some AVI's were bigger e.g 140MB went to 189MB
Yeah, it might be because this is a bit highly compressed to start with. I'm no expert on compression algorithms, but the aTV2 setting is trying to start from a full quality file and compress it at good quality. Now you are throwing a low quality file at it and it is trying to preserve all the compression artifacts, thinking that they are actually desired details. I have had success using Handbrake to re-encode files I had previously made as high quallity .mkv or .avi, and not paid attention to a few percent change in size, but I have no experience with low quality files. I have seen the occasional large .m4v created from grainy original source material.

Steppy
Nov 25, 2011, 02:39 AM
Yeah, it might be because this is a bit highly compressed to start with. I'm no expert on compression algorithms, but the aTV2 setting is trying to start from a full quality file and compress it at good quality. Now you are throwing a low quality file at it and it is trying to preserve all the compression artifacts, thinking that they are actually desired details. I have had success using Handbrake to re-encode files I had previously made as high quallity .mkv or .avi, and not paid attention to a few percent change in size, but I have no experience with low quality files. I have seen the occasional large .m4v created from grainy original source material.

Thank you, that makes sense.

What I may do then is just convert them do a more standard mp4 format and try that. As long as ATV still recognises a normal mp4 then I dont really need to make the old avi clips into high quality clips....

Steppy
Nov 30, 2011, 12:15 PM
I have been converting some of my MKV files using the AppleTV2 preset in handbrake and haven't been convinced the audio was correct.

When I open up the file in 'MediaInfo' I can see there are 2 audio tracks as discussed earlier, one stereo and one 6 channel surround.

I haven't got my ATV yet, but I downloaded Subler today and it just shows the video and stereo track ticked, but the surround channel doesn't have a tick???

The settings that handbrake enter after I import my MKV file are:

Track. Codec. Mix down. Sample rate. Bit rate
Unknown DTS 5.1. AAC (core audio). Dolby pro logic II. Auto. 160

Unknown DTS 5.1. AC3. 6 channel discrete Auto. 640

Is the above correct.....? I haven't made any changes to the preset.

Currently, if the original MKV file didn't play in my Samsung home theatre I would recode the file but would use the Normal preset and select codec and mix down of DTS Passthru and it would then create another MKV file, but one which would be recognised.

Bottom line, are the m4v files that handbrake give me under the AppleTV2 going to give me proper 5.1 surround sound when I finally get my ATV?

Thanks :)

AdrianK
Nov 30, 2011, 12:22 PM
I have been converting some of my MKV files using the AppleTV2 preset in handbrake and haven't been convinced the audio was correct.

When I open up the file in 'MediaInfo' I can see there are 2 audio tracks as discussed earlier, one stereo and one 6 channel surround.

I haven't got my ATV yet, but I downloaded Subler today and it just shows the video and stereo track ticked, but the surround channel doesn't have a tick???

The settings that handbrake enter after I import my MKV file are:

Track. Codec. Mix down. Sample rate. Bit rate
Unknown DTS 5.1. AAC (core audio). Dolby pro logic II. Auto. 160

Unknown DTS 5.1. AC3. 6 channel discrete Auto. 640

Is the above correct.....? I haven't made any changes to the preset.

Currently, if the original MKV file didn't play in my Samsung home theatre I would recode the file but would use the Normal preset and select codec and mix down of DTS Passthru and it would then create another MKV file, but one which would be recognised.

Bottom line, are the m4v files that handbrake give me under the AppleTV2 going to give me proper 5.1 surround sound when I finally get my ATV?

Thanks :)
If mediacoder says the track exists, I'd be more inclined to believe that than what Subler says. Of course, you could always open the file with VLC and check the second channel for yourself.

Steppy
Nov 30, 2011, 12:33 PM
Thanks for the speedy reply.

I opened the file In VLC and I can see it has 2 audio tracks,

There are 2 audio tracks, but when I look at the channels for each it says stereo for both.... Is that because currently I can only play through my iMac?

NightStorm
Nov 30, 2011, 01:34 PM
I haven't got my ATV yet, but I downloaded Subler today and it just shows the video and stereo track ticked, but the surround channel doesn't have a tick???


This is correct. Don't mess with it; this matches what Apple provides in videos purchased via iTunes with 5.1 audio.

Steppy
Nov 30, 2011, 01:38 PM
This is correct. Don't mess with it; this matches what Apple provides in videos purchased via iTunes with 5.1 audio.

Thank you :)

Steppy
Dec 30, 2011, 05:07 AM
I have got my ATV2 now and I'm loving it so far.

Some of the films that I want to covert are in Mp4 format already and seem to play fine, but I have converted them using the ATV2 preset in handbrake just to see what the difference is. I have attached screen shots of both files so someone can explain if one is better than the other. I notice that the file appended with 'orig' says 6 channels and is a smaller file size than the converted one which only says 2 channels.

All other file I convert are fine, but the ones which are already mp4 confuse me.

Original file
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y192/renpriv/Odds/ScreenShot2011-12-30at104002.png

Converted file
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y192/renpriv/Odds/ScreenShot2011-12-30at104041.png

Another oddity I get with these files is that my home cinema never recognised them as 6 channel files and I have to use the pseudo surround mode.

rayward
Dec 30, 2011, 10:01 AM
I have got my ATV2 now and I'm loving it so far.

Some of the films that I want to covert are in Mp4 format already and seem to play fine, but I have converted them using the ATV2 preset in handbrake just to see what the difference is. I have attached screen shots of both files so someone can explain if one is better than the other. I notice that the file appended with 'orig' says 6 channels and is a smaller file size than the converted one which only says 2 channels.

All other file I convert are fine, but the ones which are already mp4 confuse me.

Original file
Image (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y192/renpriv/Odds/ScreenShot2011-12-30at104002.png)

Converted file
Image (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y192/renpriv/Odds/ScreenShot2011-12-30at104041.png)

Another oddity I get with these files is that my home cinema never recognised them as 6 channel files and I have to use the pseudo surround mode.


I noticed that your picture height is only 544 pixels. This is not a problem - it's a product of a "cinema-wide" aspect - but you can trick your ATV2 into showing a higher resolution picture. ATV2 is limited to a 720 pixel height, but not to a 1280 pixel width. So here's the trick:

When you're setting up your encode in HandBrake, after selecting the ATV2 preset, open the Picture Settings window and look for the height/width boxes (lower left of the window). They will say 1280 for the width and a maximum of 720 for the height. If the height is 720, leave it alone. If not, click the drop down box that says "Loose" and change it to "Custom" (to window will expand a little). Then, increase the height to 720, leaving the width at 1280. Then encode away.

If you check the info on your resulting encode (using MediaInfo, for example), you will see the height is 720 but the width has been increased, on very wide frames it can be over 1600. What this means is that you have the maximum frame height that an ATV will play happily, but a far greater sideways resolution. In a nutshell, 16xx by 720 is a better quality picture than 1280 by 544.

I have only 1st gen ATVs, and they play these files with no argument. You do end up with a proportionately larger file, but that's only a minor consideration IMHO.

Steppy
Dec 31, 2011, 05:02 AM
I noticed that your picture height is only 544 pixels. This is not a problem - it's a product of a "cinema-wide" aspect - but you can trick your ATV2 into showing a higher resolution picture. ATV2 is limited to a 720 pixel height, but not to a 1280 pixel width. So here's the trick:

When you're setting up your encode in HandBrake, after selecting the ATV2 preset, open the Picture Settings window and look for the height/width boxes (lower left of the window). They will say 1280 for the width and a maximum of 720 for the height. If the height is 720, leave it alone. If not, click the drop down box that says "Loose" and change it to "Custom" (to window will expand a little). Then, increase the height to 720, leaving the width at 1280. Then encode away.

If you check the info on your resulting encode (using MediaInfo, for example), you will see the height is 720 but the width has been increased, on very wide frames it can be over 1600. What this means is that you have the maximum frame height that an ATV will play happily, but a far greater sideways resolution. In a nutshell, 16xx by 720 is a better quality picture than 1280 by 544.

I have only 1st gen ATVs, and they play these files with no argument. You do end up with a proportionately larger file, but that's only a minor consideration IMHO.

Thank you for the info, thats good to know for future encodes, but do you know which of the two files is the better one to keep?