Why can't I fit 3GB of movies in one DVD?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by pepita, Sep 26, 2005.

  1. pepita macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2004
    Location:
    eu
    #1
    I'm using iDVD for the first time and there is something I just don't understand - and forgive me if the question is stupid or if there is an obvious explanation to this, but I'm not a pro, I'm new to this and only trying to burn a DVD for fun so, be kind :)

    Ok what I don't get is this. I have a collection of .mov files that totals 3.36 GB. I thought, since a DVD is 4.7, I could fit them all in one disk, right? I also imagined that when using iDVD and building menus and such, the software adds some extra files, but I'd have never thought it would need ten times the space the .mov files actually occupy... What's going on?

    I only managed to add 3 files that are about 170 MB each, for a total of about 510 MB, and the iDVD status shows the DVD capacity is already 3.6 GB full (and then why 3.6 of 4.0, not 4.7?).

    Does iDVD convert the .mov files to make them bigger? Or what kind of files does it add that are not movies and take up sooo much space? I'm confused.

    Is my only alternative to burn the files as such via the Finder onto a DVD, and then watch them only through my computer in QuickTime, or is there any way I can actually burn a DVD with menus (only for each movie file, no internal chapters for scenes) that I can watch on any DVD player?

    Many thanks in advance to everyone who will have the patience to help me understand how it all works :)
     
  2. neocell macrumors 65816

    neocell

    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    Location:
    Great White North
    #2
    I'm not sure about iDVD as I haven't used it to actually burn a disc, though I know iMovie greatly expands the file size of .mov or avi files. If you have toast you can make a VCD or DVD that will play in your home DVD player by simply clicking on the video tab and then dragging the files to the window. It lets you make a menu as well, though I've never tried this so I don't know how well it would work with multiple different movies on one disc, and whether or not the menu is interactive. If you want to watch the files in sequence you could add them together in quicktime, save them as a .mov file, then transfer to toast and burn as either a VCD or DVD. Hope this helps
     
  3. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #3
    1) remember the bit about drives not being as big as advertised? A single layer DVD holds 4.7Gb (4,700,000,000 bytes) which equals about 4.36GB, so keep that in mind, don't know why it should stop you at 3.6GB though.

    2) iDVD is going to convert all your movies to 'standard' MPEG-2 format (a conversion that MUST be done so the DVD will playback in a DVD-Video player), at a bit-rate of about 8 Mbps which means that a single layer DVD-R will hold about 60 minutes of video. The professionally distributed films use dual layer to hold two hour movies. So the movies you are bringing into iDVD should be measured by running-time, not by size (i.e. 10 minutes 23 seconds, not 170MB)

    Solution? Burn multiple DVD-Video discs, or burn a single DVD-Data disc that won't play on a DVD-Player, but will work in your computer just fine.
     
  4. asif786 macrumors 65816

    asif786

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2004
    Location:
    London, UK.
    #4
    i'm not sure if this is the problem because i skimread, but i'll say it anyway because it's a handy tip:

    go to idvd preferences, and it should have an option for 'encoder settings' - best quality will let you fit more on a disc, while best performance will let you fit less.

    beware though, if you use the best quality option the encoding does take rather long - but it's worth it for the extra space..
     
  5. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #5
    You have to think in terms of time not file size. IIRC the max you can fit on a DVD made in iDVD is 120 minutes of video (including menus).


    Lethal
     
  6. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus

    SilentPanda

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2002
    Location:
    The Bamboo Forest
    #6
    Think of it like MP3's and making an audio CD... a CD-R will hold 700 MB or so but if you want to make it into an audio CD it won't fit 700 MB of MP3's on there if you're playing it in standard audio format... it has to convert the MP3's and then burn the audio.

    Same thing with DVD's.
     
  7. numediaman macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago (by way of SF)
    #7
    The comment about time is not true. I have a DVD that has about 4 hours on it. I burned it -- but i didn't encode it. To say the least, the bit rate is very low. But amazingly enough, the quality is not bad. I received the file as a VIDEO_TS folder.

    There are a couple of things you could do to get that thing burned. One, use another program to create a VIDEO_TS folder -- I think ffmegx can do it. Secondly, reencode your movies using a program like MpegStreamclip (a free program). It gives you tons of options to play with.

    But before you do anything, check your preferences just as asif786 mentioned.
     
  8. combatcolin macrumors 68020

    combatcolin

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2004
    Location:
    Northants, UK
    #8
    Can't iDVD use varible bit rates?

    Much more usefull than 8 Mbps, which is almost max bit rate.

    1 -2 Mbps looks fine, but not fantastic.
     
  9. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #9
    The comment about time IS true especially in regards to iDVD (which the OP is using) sense iDVD is capped in how long of a movie it can burn.

    Depending on what you use to make the DVD you can get up to 6hrs on a single layer DVD, but the quality is worse than VHS. Personally I'm leery of anything over 2hrs on a single layer, but I'm probably more critical than most.


    Lethal
     
  10. pepita thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2004
    Location:
    eu
    #10
    Thanks to everyone for the replies, very helpful! Now I get it. So basically it's like the difference between burning mp3's as files for storage and burning an Audio CD. Now that you explained it to me it looks so obvious I should have figured that out myself :)

    The total time of all movies is definitely too long to fit on any DVD, it's several hours. Well I guess I'll just burn them as files for storage, I don't mind having to use the computer to watch them, at least it'll save space on my hard disk.

    Thanks for the ffmpeg suggestion too - I'll try that out and see if I can make a DVD using the VIDEO_TS folder option instead.
     
  11. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #11
    iDVD definately sucks in this regard... I'm hoping they change this in iDVD '06 and let you specify a bitrate (or more helpfully, this being Apple and all, just let you put up to say 4-5 hours of video on a disc and have it automatically choose the bitrate that will fill the disc). In fact, doing that is the only thing that will get me to pay for iLife '06. I can't think of anything else that I need upgraded in any of the iLife apps...

    For those that say 4+ hours of video on a DVD-R will look like crap, I have crammed over 8 hours on a single disc, and while it's worse than a good SDTV broadcast, it is pretty close to a video tape, which for the purpose I was using it for (backing up recorded TV shows) was perfectly acceptable, in fact preferable to having to have 4 times as many discs.
     
  12. Mechcozmo macrumors 603

    Mechcozmo

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2004
    #12

    Agreed. Need some 80-pass VBR here to get a dozen hours onto a DVD! ;)
    But still, when a movie is 2 hours and 1 minute long, iDVD should be able to drop the bitrate by .1 to make it fit... :mad:
     
  13. numediaman macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago (by way of SF)
    #13
    Yes, iDVD can only put two hours on a DVD -- but if iDVD isn't the answer he needs to look elsewhere to burn that DVD.

    As for quality issues over 2 hours -- it depends on the purpose of the DVD. In this case, it was a six hour concert. The sound was far more important than the video -- though, as I said, the quality was amazingly good. I didn't create the DVD so I have to compliment the producer who obviously started with good material and dialed down the bit rate to get it all onto one DVD.
     

Share This Page