playback issues of DVDs made in iDVD (08) & how is iDVD vs. Toast?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by marekk, Jan 17, 2009.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2009
    Hi - is there anybody who used iDVD and Toast and can say what results have/had using iDVD and Toast?
    I never used Toast but always iDVD, and pretty much every time I run into trouble playing burnt DVD - they skip, or freeze, stutter, etc. I tried all kinds of blank media, thinking that that could be a problem; I started to buy Verbatim with an extra protective layer; I burnt (in iDVD) the discs at 1x speed.... and - still no much of the difference - even if they play once or twice without interruption - the discs will pause, skip, or freeze, or stutter eventually... (on many different DVD-players, using different media)
    WHAT TO DO, so the burnt DVDs will play smoothly? :confused:
    Is the TOAST 9 or 10 any better at this point (than iDVD)??? Is there anybody who would have the experiences with both: iDVD and Toast, and can say which one is better? (or, perhaps, both are not too good..? and only $1000+ Final Cut Studio is the answer..? but - is it? Maybe the non-freezing, skipping, etc. DVDs are possible only when done for Hollywood?).
    This is very annoying - not being able to play back whatever consumes so much time, and constructive/creative energy; seems to be boxed in inside the computer... not good.:(
    Thanks if anybody can point me to some solution.:cool:

  2. macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2009

    I've never used Toast to burn DVDs, but what worked for me well in iDVD is creating an image first and then burning it with Disk Utility. This way you are separating two processes and can preview the result before wasting a blank disk. By separating two processes you can also find out if the culprit is iDVD or your DVD drive.
    I use TDK blank DVDs without any issues.
  3. macrumors 68040


    Feb 26, 2003
    around the world
    In iDVD you can directly burn a disc image. Review the result and then burn it e.g. with toast or directly from the finder.

    Regarding the encoding engine. Pretty difficult to tell for me. Maybe someone has more details on that.

    The Toast DVD aren't very pretty.
  4. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2009
    thank you both - this is some help already - I'll try your suggestions (never tried to burn the disc image, but hopefully it will work better - thanks again, and if someone with some more Toast vs. iDvd experiences would see this post - please share yours - thanks in advance
  5. macrumors 65816

    Jun 6, 2006
    What version of iDVD are you using and what "quality" setting are you burning it at? What is your source video?
  6. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2009
    I'm using iDVD from iLife08; the quality settings (for 1hr video) I used were: Best Performance & Professional Quality; the source is full quality (non-compressed) Quick Time movie (.mov file).
    Do you have any ideas as how to improve the outcome? Are all home made DVDs are doomed to skip, freeze, etc.?
  7. macrumors 65816


    Feb 25, 2003
    Cold beer land
    Here's some info. You mileage may vary etc ....
    And I don't know why ...
    I haven't done this for a while, but ...

    Comparing a DVD burned with iDVD vs Toast, there was a visual difference. Looking at the "pit pattern" on the DVD, the Toast burned disks looked more distinct.
    I think (mileage may vary here) that the toast burned disk were slightly more reliable.

    Big question still in my mind is why with the same drive would I get a different looking disk.
  8. macrumors 65816

    Jun 6, 2006
    Well, temporarily, I would switch to burning this at a lower quality to see if there is a bitrate problem somehow. You can always burn to a DVD-RW so you aren't creating more coasters.

    Let me know if that changes anything.

    When you say "non-compressed", where is it coming from? iMovie? Final Cut Express?
  9. macrumors 68020


    Jan 3, 2006
    In iDVD'06 there was a "Best Quality" option. Best Performance has more compression, but it takes less time, so it refers to the performance of iDVD, not the DVD that you end up burning in the end. I presume iDVD '08 has a similar "Best Quality" option.

    By the way, I agree with burning to a Disk Image. It saves a lot of time in case DVD burning causes iDVD to crash. You can just use Disk Utility to burn the image to another DVD.
  10. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2009
    I read on Apple's iDVD forum that the "Best Performance" is really the beset quality because of its high CBR (a constant bit rate encoding), while "Professional Quality" and the other one ...("Best Quality" is it?) use VBR (a variable bit rate encoding), so your overall sampling ratio of the encoded (for burning, regardless - an image or DVD) is LOWER on average (than the "Best Performance"). It also behaves better, allowing you to start the process of encoding, while still finishing working on the menus, etc. This was my understanding of the iDVD thing....which I perhaps misunderstood before, since - up to now - I was always burning DVDs in iDVD using the "Professional Quality" (even less than an hour of material) - somehow I was under impression that it was added for iLife08 for a reason (the two looking-for-the-best-compression passes sound impressive; vs. just one pass in the other options), and the very name "Proffesional" sounded impressive, but (if I understood correctly the Apple forum) - this is only good or make sense on the longer than hour or two pieces, but material shorter than an hour should be managed using the "Best Performance"...
    And - how to compare Toast's burning/performance quality to all this of the iDVD world..?:confused:
  11. macrumors 68020


    Jan 3, 2006
    "Best Performance" starts encoding as soon as you add files to your iDVD project. At that point it does not know how long the project will be, so it just compresses them as hard as it can. It may also be using CBR to avoid a second pass as well. Neither of these will improve the image quality. As I said before, "Performance" refers to iDVD's speed for completing its task, not the image quality of the end product.

    "Professional" quality was explained during release as better encoding for long projects, but it should take longer to complete.

    "Best quality" should be, well, best quality.

    I have no idea how these settings would compare to Toast.
  12. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2009
    OK - thank you - Best Quality it is the (for iDVD in a case of less than an hour, I suppose)
  13. macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2009
    Same issues....

    I too experienced the skipping and stuttering playback issues. I did resolve them. I bought Verbatim Digital Movie DVD-R disks, and changed the burn speed to 4X. I have burnt numerous disks now, and not one of the has showed any stuttering or skipping. Also.... I have Toast 9, the quality of the disk is nowhere near the quality of the copies from IDVD......probably the way that I have it setup knowing me. Hope you can figure out your issue!

  14. macrumors 6502a


    Mar 7, 2005
    I ran into this when I was burning a movie using the reference file and not a self contained movie.

    When you output the file to be burned in iMovie, make sure you click the little box that says make self contained movie. It takes longer to make that file, but it makes a difference.
  15. macrumors newbie

    Feb 7, 2010
    I DVD burn speed

    I am pretty frustrated with a machine which touts itself one of the best in the business and I get skipping DVDs :(

    When you are talking about changing the burn speed to 4x are you referring to in preferences OR in each DVD being burned?

    I am using Verbatim Printable DVD-R discs. I am creating in iMovie HD (not the current version) and then "sharing" with iDVD.

    Is there anything else I need to do other than dropping the burn speed?
    Thanks to ANYONE who can help me with this problem. :confused:
  16. macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2009
    Zagreb, Croatia or Epping UK
    I don't like iDVD

    Hi, i have a Macbook Pro unibody 2.53GHz, and am trying to work out a good way to burn video DVDs to play in any DVD player.

    I had success with iDVD but it is too slow to use. I have to wait 10 seconds for clicks and options to show, it acts like it is running on a my old G4 but surely this new software on a brand new macbook pro shouldn't behave like this.

    However it did burn me a DVD that played well, better than my experiences with Popcorn and Burn.

    I am using 700mb avi files by the way, and would love to get 2 movies per DVD but haven't had luck so far. I did manage to get two mpeg-2 files of about 2.1 GB each by converting the avi to mp4 in Handbrake with a target file size of 650MB, then converted that to mpeg-2 with Burn and tried burning it to dvd with Popcorn. it didn't work, the second movie stopped after 5 minutes, same point each time, and the menu and options weren't working so well but that could be me not knowing how to configure things properly.

    I'm currently experimenting with Handbrake, Popcorn, Burn (freeware) and iDVD to see which is most reliable and functional.

    Although I am looking forward to getting a copy of Toast from a friend quite soon.
  17. macrumors newbie


    May 1, 2005
    Durham, NC
    Earlier this year I spent many frustrating hours 'troubleshooting' iDVD. In the end the thing that worked for me was to clear the harddrive (250gb) to about 40gb free space. Only that solved my 'stuttering dvd' problem. I read on the Apple forum that iDVD needs lots of HD space to work well and in my case HD free space solved my problem. I considered toast but think it's too expensive for my requirement of burning 1-2 dvds per year.

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