Blu-ray burner, AVCHD, High Definition 1080i (HD)

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by DoctorMacbook, May 4, 2009.

  1. DoctorMacbook macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2009
    OK... Here's the BIG problem I have...
    We had a new addition to the family (baby) so I decided to get a videocamera. Wanted something future proof, so got a high definition memory card based camera: Sony CX11

    Needed a new computer, had an old PC, but for some reason went to the other side and purchased a Macbook- I heard they were very good at editing video (and it is).

    Within 2 weeks I had completely filled my 250GB hard drive with all this movie footage! I need to get it off my Macbook and free up my hard drive!

    Editing in iMovie... no probs. Burning in i DVD... few glitches, but got there in the end. Cool, no probs you think right... NO

    I have a 1080p TV screen, and a PS3. So i'm recording in 1080i HD footage, but I'm losing all the HD quality!!! The DVD image quality is so poor in comparison with the quality I get when I plug my camcorder into my TV.
    Its frustrating.

    I cant delete the footage off my macbook without preserving the HD. Its really important footage of the first few days of my baby's life.

    And the memory is a killer! 25min of footage (4GB of AVCHD on my camcorder) is converted into about 20GB of Quicktime footage in iMovie.

    So I'm running out of space on my hard drive, and Macbook apparently isn't compatible with Blu-ray (so I hear!).

    OK so I need some urgent help.

    What do I do?

    I have sourced a possible drive:
    the LG-BE06LU10-External-LightScribe-Blu-Ray
    Does anyone have any recommendations for a drive? Or have any experience of using this drive?

    It wasnt designed for Mac but a couple of reviews say its compatible.

    Is there any recommended software out there that will edit AVCHD and burn Blu-ray Discs reliably?

    I have read multiple reviews that say Toast 10 is not very good. Any alternatives out there?

    Any Advice???

  2. NewMacbookPlz macrumors 68040


    Sep 28, 2008
    The macs can burn/read BluRay discs as data, but cannot currently play back video from a DRM'd BluRay like you'd buy at the store as a movie.
  3. gan6660 macrumors 65816


    Aug 18, 2008
    If your looking for a laptop blu ray burner I have one that Ill sell you for $280 shipped.
  4. reallynotnick macrumors 6502a

    Oct 21, 2005
    Hopefully someone will come up with a better solution for you as I haven't really looked into the HD movie burner side of things, but you could always burn your videos directly off your camera (before iMovie makes them bigger) onto a DVD and then your videos would be preserved. Of course they are not playable on anything but you would have all those backed up. Otherwise you could also look at a cheap external HDD.
    And being that they are so important you would want to burn at least 2 copies and keep them in separate locations so if something tragic were to happen in one location you would still have safe copies elsewhere.
  5. joysmahal macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2009
    Seattle, WA
    Have you tried Toast 10 Titanium or Toast Pro?

    I just got my new Macbook 2.4 unibody last week and I also have an HD Camcorder (Canon HF10). I haven't made any video discs yet, but the Apple Guy at the Apple store told me that Toast Titanium will allow you to burn your HD movies onto a regular DVD (or Dual Layer DVD) and you will be able to watch your videos in High Def on a Blu-Ray Player or PS3.
  6. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    If you DVD player supports it, it can up-scale to HD, but doesn't mean it will actually be HD.
  7. joysmahal macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2009
    Seattle, WA
    I don't think you understand what the Toast program is capable of doing. You basically can make a high def Blu-Ray compatible disk with regular DVD's. You can fit about 25 minutes of High Def video (depending on the bitrate of the video) onto a regular single layer DVD. The DVDs made with High Def video will only play on a Blu-Ray Player.

    Read this post from a Camcorder forum for more detail:

    Toast 10 Blu-Ray plugin info:
  8. DoctorMacbook thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2009
    on the toast plug in website you attached, it says that you can put upto an hour of HD footage on a DVD.
    4GB should hold no more than 25mins AVCHD
    so does this mean there is a loss in quality?

    Also, what do I do with the footage I have converted to Quicktime... can I change it back to AVCHD once I have edited the footage. I no longer have the original as my camera is memory card based, so I had to wipe the memory card!
  9. DoctorMacbook thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2009
    can anyone suggest a way to convert my Quicktime and iMovie projects back into a compressed HD format such as AVCHD.
    I'm really keen not to loose my HD footage
  10. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    The problem with editing AVCHD on Macs is that Macs cannot edited it natively. In iMovie it transcodes to AIC and in FCP it converts to Apple ProRes. This is why your files are so big, well bigger than they would be if Macs could edit AVCHD natively. But HD, even compressed, takes up a lot of space. That is the major drawbacks of editing HD.

    First recommendation is to buy a 1TB external FW drive. They are pretty inexpensive now. It's insane to edit w/ your internal laptop drive. You are probably getting tons of dropouts.

    Second, Toast 10 and Adobe Premier are the only ways to burn BD-R. Maybe that will change next month @ WWDC, maybe not. Toast 10 isn't terribly expensive. Another alternative: save your movie to a SD card or Memory Stick and play it on your PS3 that way. 16GB cards are affordable if you buy online rather than B&M stores like Best Buy or Staples.
  11. DoctorMacbook thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2009
    cool. thx so much for the advice. im kind of going off the idea of burning BD as its an expensive route to take.

    Which external 1TB or even 3TB external drive would you recommend? Ive read that some of the cheap ones are unreliable and crash easily... I really dont want to lose all my data!

    Plus is it possible to edit directly from the external drive? Im assuming it'll be a lot slower via the USB connection?

    which of the file formats take up less space? AIC or ApplePro Res? I have no probs with iMovie, so is there any need to upgrade to Final Cut Express?

    Advice is much appreciated
  12. Kylemurph macrumors newbie

    Oct 15, 2010

    You've probably fixed this issue by now-- People are making this far too difficult (no offense everyone). There are a lot of options you have but to contain a high quality for your burn:


    Choose the HD option.... THE HD OPTION... THERE IT IS!
    Save it to desktop to find easier


    Import video
    Grab that new export from desktop


    It will look great. Only Final Cut Pro will allow the true HD 1080 import from your awesome camera. Imovie only allows import of 720. gay i know

    Now if you'll excuse me, I have to get back to tying snakes together to form one super long snake.

    youtube: kylejustinm
  13. DoctorMacbook thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2009
    Thanks for the post.

    I actually ended up buying a wireless external hard drive (Western Digital MyBookWorld, 3TB). I transfer my movies there via the macbook, and then watch them via playstation 3.

    Its convenient as my PS3 is always connected to the TV and plays AVCHD, and I don't loose any quality.

    Unfortunately the clips are all unedited. I'll either have to get Final Cut Pro, or wait for something better. Even if I edit with Final Cut Pro it would eat up my hard drive as Macs don't edit AVCHD (they have to convert it into a larger format- see Chupa Chupa's post). Of course I could always buy a PC, as they seem to have the capability to edit AVCHD...

    hmmm.... kinda regret getting a macbook. :(

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