Who stores their MKVs?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by bluewooster, Nov 14, 2012.

  1. macrumors member

    Jul 18, 2007
    Just curious what others think/have done.
    I converted all my DVDs (and now Blurays) to MKV with MakeMKV over the years and have amassed several terabytes of data. I was originally using a net top with XBMC and using these files for "lossless" playback. However, now that I've gone the ATV route, and converted everything with handbrake, all my MP4s fit on one 2 TB drive. Should I delete the (rather large!) MKVs?

    On one hand, it's not like I currently need the space and maybe some better format comes along (or native MKV support on ATV) in the future so it makes sense to hang onto the files. But, as I need more space, it's tempting to simply delete the MKVs (the handbrake conversions really look quite good to my eyes) rather than buy even more hard drives!

    Anyone else have a similar debate or other thoughts? I guess to delete and re-rip with makeMkv if needed wouldn't be the end of the world but I'm a bit paranoid (what if I lose the disc, gets scratched, etc) - plus, it took a long time to rip!
  2. macrumors 68020

    Mar 15, 2012
    I keep my mkv's but I am selective as I run out of space. I have set a limit on drive space and now that I am nearing it, I am starting to delete mkv's of the stuff I know I don't really care about, like my daughters old tween movies. I will always keep mkv's of the stuff that is dear to my heart, LOTR, Harry Potter, Avatar, etc.

    aTV is good, but you never know, the next thing out might be able to play mkv's and then you can go back to original video and audio quality with no effort.
  3. macrumors member

    Apr 5, 2004
    You seem to be inferring that MKVs are larger by nature, the real conversation is whether you should keep what sound like high quality (use the term quality to refer to the size vs. SSIM like quality definition) encodes vs. more compressed version. As a container MKVs can store virtually anything at any bit rate so the container itself is not high vs. low quality.

    In my case I use MakeMKV then handbrake to encode but I keep everything as MKV because I use a capable player. In the end the question is more personal, do you want to keep higher quality versions of your content or not.
  4. macrumors 601


    Feb 8, 2004
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    H.265 is around the corner. It's probably the next big thing for :apple:TV 4 or 5 standards. People claim that it maintains the quality of H.264 at about half the file sizes. If true, it's easy to picture a fairly rapid adoption run so that more content can be fit into ever smaller/thinner iDevices (maybe they'll never grow above 64GB MAX).

    Keep the MKVs as masters and you are ready to adopt H.265 (or something similar) too. Delete them and when you want to adopt the new standard, you'll be back to needing to 2-step it again (new MKVs, then H.265). I'm confident H.264 files would still play on future :apple:TVs that might adopt H.265 but the page will turn... and the desire for the benefits of H.265 will be increasingly alluring as time continues to flow by.
  5. macrumors 68020

    Mar 15, 2012
  6. macrumors 68000


    Mar 5, 2011
    I keep mine, just in case a new standard comes out that's better :)

    I only have ~200GB of movies and ~250GB of shows though, so only now am I starting to push my iMac's storage limit. Definitely picking up a 2-3TB external on Black Friday or Christmas!
  7. macrumors regular

    Apr 12, 2012
    I look at this way. If it's a movie that I really care about, I will buy the bluray for the best possible audio/video. If some other format comes out in the future, I will always have the bluray for my backup. ( At least until 4k comes along);)
  8. macrumors 604


    Mar 26, 2008
    i just keep buying external 2.5 1 TB drives ^^ i have like 6 by now

    they cost like nothing anymore
  9. macrumors regular

    Jan 4, 2011
    I just keep all my media on a western digital network drive and if i need more storage then i just chain them together which you can do now with the latest ones now
  10. macrumors 65816

    Jun 10, 2005
    I keep anything that's higher quality than the transcode for posterity. What happens when Apple releases an Apple TV that supports DTS True HD? I can add the audio track to my MP4.

    So that means I keep MP2 folders and MKVs. Given how cheap hard drives are these days why would you not?

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