Converting mass *.avi files to AppleTV

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by kmaute, Oct 15, 2008.

  1. kmaute macrumors 6502

    kmaute

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #1
    Hey all,

    I have roughly 250 gigs of various avis, primarily television shows that I'd like to convert to an AppleTV watchable format. The quality is less than stellar already but would prefer not to lose anymore. First off, is this even possible? I have a 2.2 SR MBP with 4g of RAM to do this project. However, I'll be buying a Nehalem iMac as soon as they are released. I guess if it takes that long, it'll be a big help. Any advice as to the program of choice (I have VisualHub) would be great. Thank you.
     
  2. theLimit macrumors 6502a

    theLimit

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2007
    Location:
    up tha holler, acrost tha crick
    #2
    VisualHub would be the way to go. It excels at batch encodes.

    You may want to break up the workload though. Unless you don't mind pointing a fan at your computer and leaving it alone for a week. :)
     
  3. kmaute thread starter macrumors 6502

    kmaute

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #3
    Any recommendations as to settings? Is it worth the time to go h.264? Thanks...
     
  4. Karpfish macrumors 6502a

    Karpfish

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    #4
    Visualhub will pwn this project. I converted a few seasons of TV shows for a friend over the past few days and everything worked perfectly. I use H.264 encoding and the highest quality setting.
     
  5. dwright1974 macrumors 6502

    dwright1974

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    I have the same "problem" but VisualHub isn't available any more. Any thoughts on an alternative?

    Cheers

    - D
     
  6. FJ218700 macrumors 68000

    FJ218700

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2007
    Location:
    Blue Dot, Red State
    #6
    iSquint will work fine
     
  7. kmaute thread starter macrumors 6502

    kmaute

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    USA
    #7
    I just downloaded VisualHub yesterday so it's around if you know where to look. I suggest googling to see if you can't find it. I'm so tempted to use this as motivation to buy a new MP. I think 8 cores would handle this nicely. Thanks...
     
  8. eddyg macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2003
    Location:
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    #8
    Something like this?

    1) Download HandBrakeCLI Snapshot 3
    2) Open Terminal
    3) "cd" to directory containing AVIs
    4)
    for file in *.avi
    do
    echo "Converting $file..."
    /Applications/HandBrakeCLI --decomb --preset "iPod High-Rez" -i "$file" -o "$file.m4v" 2> $file.log
    done

    Or you could use the HandBrake GUI I guess.
     
  9. aristobrat macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    #9
    Would using the AppleTV preset end up looking better if that's what he's encoding for?
     
  10. eddyg macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2003
    Location:
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    #10
    I doubt that the avi's are of a high enough quality to benefit from the ATV preset. The iPhone high should be plenty for a TV Show.

    With the next snapshot I'd possibly recommend the Apple Universal preset.

    Cheers, Ed.
     
  11. janph76 macrumors member

    janph76

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2007
    #11
    If you have that many AVIs I suggest you look into elgato Turbo264, if you don't mind paying a little more for it, since it will help free up your Mac for other important tasks and takes the load off the CPU.

    Right now I'm in the process of converting AVIs roughly around your size and turbo.264 has been doing that job for the past 2 days. No worries about the heat issue!!!

    so if you have that many files to convert I suggest you look into it.

    Happy watching :D
     
  12. eddyg macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2003
    Location:
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    #12
    If you do decide to use the HandBrakeCLI then I'd suggest you limit it to just using one CPU ( --cpu 1) to avoid heating up your MBP too much - it will take longer, but your Mac will be happier for it.

    Cheers, Ed.
     
  13. LinMac macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2007
    #13
    -1 on this.

    The Turbo.264 hardware is pretty good, but the software associated with it is not quite as good. I have never had any problems with Handbrake or Visualhub compared to the video corruption and slow speeds I experienced when using the Turbo.264. You might have better luck, but I returned my Turbo.264 after being very disappointed with it.
     
  14. jmir macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2008
    #14
    good to know all this as i am getting to like my apple tv:)
     
  15. The Viking macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2007
    #15
    While VisualHub is my favorite (and has an Apple TV preset), a nice free alternative is MPEG Streamclip. It has support for a seemingly infinite list of formats and full batch capability.
     
  16. janph76 macrumors member

    janph76

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2007
    #16
    Hmm...more knowledge for me, thanks for the tip "edd" :)
     
  17. eddyg macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2003
    Location:
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    #17
    This depends on which Mac you have - I have a Mac Pro - and I use all the cores when encoding. However I use smcFanControl to increase the fan speed to avoid overheating, when I didn't do this the memory would get too hot and start getting errors.

    In fact now that I use HB for EyeTV encoding I just leave the fans at 950rpm all the time (normally they run at 400rpm). I'm looking forward to the day where smcFanControl can use Activity based settings for the fans, so that it automatically ramps up the base fan speed based on what is running.

    Ideally Apple would fix their fan speed vs temperature curves to ramp the fans up earlier - I find that its no where near aggressive enough to keep the Mac Pro cool.

    Cheers, Ed.
     
  18. stab macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2007
    #18
    are the h.264?

    If your .avis are recent - they may already be encoded with h.264 but just be using the .avi container.

    In that case all you need is MPEG Streamclip to change the container to .mp4 which will take seconds not hours.

    To check what the actual encoding is, just use quicktime's movie inspector
     

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