Adding artwork on frontrow/itunes movies WITHOUT buying quicktime pro - please help

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by pubjoe, Mar 1, 2009.

  1. pubjoe macrumors 6502

    Aug 14, 2007
    Argh! I'm pulling my hair out!!

    I have ripped a chunk of my DVD library and stored it on an external drive. (avi files). I would like them to play from front row on my mac and if it's all good, I plan to use a permanent front row based media centre.

    Obviously, it would be nice to see the dvd cover artwork and movie information - it would also be nice to be able to keep the films on the external drive (and use pointer files stored on the mac if necessary).

    I understand I need to get my movies into itunes to do this properly. But I don't want to re-encode films that have already been encoded once before for obvious reasons - therefore, I need to make some itunes friendly tag file thingies. This is the only other option to re-encoding, yes?

    Yes I know there are already plenty of guides around to do this, believe me I have tried about 20 of them, but I still can't do it.

    I have tried...

    Save as reference movie ...Needs Quicktime pro though :mad:

    Movie2iTunes 1.2
    Great! Simple drag&drop app to make an itunes friendly file tagging my movies ...I start it up, select media folder then it crashes ...Restart, do it again, it just crashes (I'm using the latest imac with up to date software - is it crashing because it relies on QT pro to already be installed???) :mad:

    VideoDrive 1.8
    Looks great, but again you need to pay for it and I only want the ability to add cover artwork not all the other stuff. :mad:

    Any help would be GREATLY appreciated. :)
  2. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007

    That'll do the job perfectly for tagging your files.
  3. pubjoe thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 14, 2007
    Thanks a lot, but I just tried it and it seems that metax is for mp4 files only, my videos are avi (divx or xvid - one or the other).

    Again, metax faq says that for avi files, you need Quicktime pro to make a container first, there lies my problem.
  4. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    To add to iTunes and play on the likes of an Apple TV, iPod, you need to convert them from .avi to .mp4 anyway.
  5. pubjoe thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 14, 2007
    That is not what I have been reading on the 20 or so guides I mentioned.

    You need to first create a reference-file/container/tag thing which can point to and play the avi video in it's original state.

    I do not wish to re-encode the video as I will be losing quality and gaining file size by an additional layer of compression, not to mention the time it would take.
  6. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    They will play in Front Row... But I mentioned the Apple TV, iPods because they won't play the .avi files.
  7. pubjoe thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 14, 2007
    Ah, yes I see what you mean. Especially if I were to use an apple tv as a media box (I don't tend to watch video on my iPhone).

    I actually had a mini in mind over the appletv though (well either that or just route the extra long vga and audio leads I currently plug into my imac under the floorboards), as I could do more things with it, such as occasional internet & messaging with the nice apple wireless keyboard... But most importantly, I could actually insert a DVD in it too. But I don't know much about the appletv ...Maybe I'm overlooking it as an option.

    Maybe I should explain why I'm being so particular about how I want my video stored (though I'm open to suggestions if I'm wrong about anything)...

    I have a sort of dream right now to ditch all the "old school" space consuming DVDs and jump in to the future of digital storage. would be so nice to flick through a virtual catalogue of my video collection complete with covers and sypnosis with a lushious, simple menu system such as front row.

    Please tell me if I'm wrong but I automatically thought that mp4 was not the most ideal format for this purpose of a permanent archive. I don't really know why I'm presuming so, I just always thought that divx/xvid was the best way to keep near perfect quality at a filesize that won't get out of hand when I've got hundreds of DVDs stored on a harddisk. Also, I thought that avi files were more versatile, more portable and generally more accepted as a video format - for some reason, I don't really want my video collection to become a slave to iTunes in the same way as my music is, and because of the large amount of drive space it will take up, I want it stored on a dedicated drive which may not always live on a mac for whatever reason.

    Personally, my movie collection is a lot more precious to me than music and I want to be careful that I don't make a decision now that will cause limitations in the future.

    If you (or anyone?) think I have come to any bad decisions above, I would value any advice.

    P.S. I got movie2itunes to work, your supposed to drag the video file on to the program icon! ...'Doh! ...Anyway, now that they are listed in iTunes, I can use the metax program you suggested, which is great, thank you.

    Still, now I'm wondering if mp4 is a better option after all.
  8. reinisb macrumors newbie

    Mar 10, 2009

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