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Old Dec 7, 2012, 09:35 AM   #1
mazuma
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Blu-ray to appleTV 3 workflow

I know there a lot of threads on this subject, but the information seems to be fairly fragmented depending on the final output device the media will be play on. I am considering converting my disc blu-ray collection to a format that will play on my appleTV 3. Good idea or bad?

My current planned workflow is
Blu-ray disc -> MakeMKV -> Handbrake -> appleTV 3

From what I've been able to piece together is that.

1. appleTV 3 will only play m4v files and not mkv? mkv is for a HTPC or similar setup?
2. appleTV (or any mac) won't natively play DTS-HD passthru? So, I'll need to either not include this or include a second track? Which one? AC3 or AAC?

I wen through the process on one disc and ended up with a file that has no sound if I try to play it though quicktime on my mac. I only selected the DTS-HD passthru though. VLC will play the mkv file with no problem, but doesn't play the m4v file? Not sure why. Really doesn't matter though because that is not my end game.

Side note. At one point I tried mac mini HTPC with Plex, but it seemed like Plex never really would just work. Seemed like a lot of software restarts to get things running. Ultimately I tapped out and went the apple TV route with my dvd collection and has worked near flawless. Now I'd like to repeat that with my blu-ray discs.

Thanks for any help.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 09:51 AM   #2
morningsong
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Your MAC will not play any 6-channel format in Quicktime or iTunes.
I encode two sets of audio, one that will play on the MAC (and secondary devices) and another hi-quality stream that will play through my receiver on Apple TV.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 10:39 AM   #3
mic j
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If you use the HB aTV3 preset, it should automatically set up your audio formats for you (track 1 AAC stereo, track 2 AC3 passthrough or, if DTS, ffmepg discrete 6-channel). Personally, I do not include the DTS (or DTS-HD) in the mp4 package. It's such a long shot that mp4's and apples will ever be able to play this track that it is probably not worth the disk space to include it. I do however, keep the mkv's that contain the dts tracks. Just in case something changes and the dts tracks become useful, I do include them in the mkv archive.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 11:40 AM   #4
mazuma
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After I scan the disk in MakeMKV i check the audio tracks I want. Is the DD 3/2+1 a Dolby Digital 5.1? If so, would it make sense to include this in the mkv creation and let this passthru in handbrake? That way I'm not getting a resampled version of the audio. Or, would this be a waste?

Also, why do they use the terminology lossless on the DTS-HD track only? is the 3/2+1 and other tracks a form of lossy?
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 12:03 PM   #5
mic j
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mazuma View Post
After I scan the disk in MakeMKV i check the audio tracks I want. Is the DD 3/2+1 a Dolby Digital 5.1? If so, would it make sense to include this in the mkv creation and let this passthru in handbrake? That way I'm not getting a resampled version of the audio. Or, would this be a waste?

Also, why do they use the terminology lossless on the DTS-HD track only? is the 3/2+1 and other tracks a form of lossy?
Regular DD 5.1 is DD3/2+1. HD Dolby is Dolby True HD. DTS normal DTS and DTS Master Audio is high def DTS. After MakeMKV scans the disc you will be given a choice of audio tracks, I always choose the highest quality track. So if you see Dolby True HD and you select it, you will also get the SD audio track as part of it's core. HB has no HD audio capability (neither does the aTV), use passthrough with all Dolby audio tracks. DTS and DTS-MA which have to be converted, by HB, to Dolby. Rarely, but I have seen it, a movie will include a DD 5.1 track along with the DTS-HD track. If you see that, it's your option which to tell HB to use, passthrough DD or resampled DTS-HD.

Is that clear as mud?
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 06:09 PM   #6
mazuma
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mic j View Post
Regular DD 5.1 is DD3/2+1. HD Dolby is Dolby True HD. DTS normal DTS and DTS Master Audio is high def DTS. After MakeMKV scans the disc you will be given a choice of audio tracks, I always choose the highest quality track. So if you see Dolby True HD and you select it, you will also get the SD audio track as part of it's core. HB has no HD audio capability (neither does the aTV), use passthrough with all Dolby audio tracks. DTS and DTS-MA which have to be converted, by HB, to Dolby. Rarely, but I have seen it, a movie will include a DD 5.1 track along with the DTS-HD track. If you see that, it's your option which to tell HB to use, passthrough DD or resampled DTS-HD.

Is that clear as mud?
Sorta. I've tried one bluray so far and selected the DTS-HD lossless track. After that I imported into handbrake. I selected the DTS-HD passthru. When I tried to play it in QuickTime, no audio. Should there have been a SD track in there as well? Or, should I be selecting a second track and making it AC3? Sorry for all the confusion, but these transcodes don't go fast. So, I'm trying to get it right from the start.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 06:31 PM   #7
mic j
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mazuma View Post
Sorta. I've tried one bluray so far and selected the DTS-HD lossless track. After that I imported into handbrake. I selected the DTS-HD passthru. When I tried to play it in QuickTime, no audio. Should there have been a SD track in there as well? Or, should I be selecting a second track and making it AC3? Sorry for all the confusion, but these transcodes don't go fast. So, I'm trying to get it right from the start.
DTS pass-through won't work because nothing Mac will play them. You need to select:

Track: DTS-HD
Codec: ffmpeg
Mixdown: 6-channel discrete

You can put the DTS passthrough in the mp4 along with the other 2 tracks (AAC stereo and 6-channel discrete) but it is basically a useless track just taking up disc space

Edit: I would also make sure Web Optimize is checked and Picture size is set to Anamorphic Strict. Those setting will help insure easy streaming and high quality visual output.

Edit #2: One thing you can do to work your system out is just select 1 chapter to transcode. If it looks and sounds like you want it, then go do the full title.
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Last edited by mic j; Dec 7, 2012 at 07:07 PM. Reason: additional info
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 01:52 PM   #8
swfh
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Blu-ray to appleTV 3 workflow

I rip the BD to my HDD via DVDFab or AnyDVD, I then open that file in Handbrake choosing Title Specific Scan and selecting Folder (this keeps the chapters) not bothering with making an MKV file first. I always use the Normal profile and have two soundtracks, one AAC 2.0 (default) and the other DD 5.1 created from the DTS HD or DD track on the BD by selecting AC3 (ffmpeg) and 6-Channel Discrete.
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