Few questions about bluray

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by MacBH928, Dec 22, 2016.

  1. MacBH928 macrumors 68020

    MacBH928

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    #1
    I am thinking about connecting my mac to the tv and attaching a n external BD drive to it to watch bluray movies. I have a couple of questions.

    1-I heard Apple does not support BD, but what does that mean? If I open the disc in VLC it will not play? How can I get it to work?

    2-With VLC you can bypass region locks/restrictions on DVDs, Can you do the same with Bluray?

    3-Anyone know a good remote media control I can use with my Mac? Like a tv remote control?
     
  2. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

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    #2
    Are you sure you don't want to rip your BDs and then just drop the rendered file into iTunes for much easier playback options (via Mac or :apple:TV)?

    To #1, MacOS does not have any kind of BD player in the OS itself. There is at least one dedicated BD player app sold separately (by Macgo) and it plays them fine on a Mac.

    To #3, I point back to the first bit of my reply about ripping them into an iTunes file.

    I don't have much to offer for the other questions.

    Lastly, if you are going to buy a BD drive mostly to try to do what you are wanting to do here, consider a dedicated BD player instead... or even a 4K BD player. Trying to push video playback from BD through a Mac to your TV seems like some needless "middle man" obstacles. A dedicated BD player that bypasses your Mac is made to play BDs on your TV. There's many models priced < $100 on Amazon. Some 4K units are not that much more.
     
  3. mic j macrumors 68030

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    #3
    The one thing you lose by ripping to a iTunes compatible format is the BD menu. If that's an important part of the "experience", and I will say I have a handful of BD's which having the menus are important, an external BD player or the use of VLC are good options. I really wish that someone would develop an aTV player that would mount and play iso files, which play like a normal BD with all it's menu functionality.

    After say all that, I should mention that I have ripped all my movies to mkv or mp4 and using Infuse on the aTV to play them...without menus.
     
  4. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #4
    Have you looked into getting an AppleTV 4, installing plex? I have been ripping my DVD's and Blu-Rays (plex) so that I can have all my movies at the press of button, or two!

    Also, for remotes, I don't know how deep you want to go or if you are looking for something that you can customize, but I have been using the iRule remote kit for the past three years and absolutely love it.

    I have it setup to work with all my devices, including my AppleTV4 and light switches. I am going to be setting one up for my mom after christmas so that she can put all of her remotes away. I am using a first gen iPad Mini as my remote for this setup.
     
  5. MacBH928 thread starter macrumors 68020

    MacBH928

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    #5
    thanks for replying.

    1-Whats the point of buying Bluray if you will rip it and play it on iTunes, just buy stuff from iTunes then.

    2-Ripping BD/DVDs takes at least 2 hours per title and is extremely processor intensive task, and then you have the problem of storage space. Depending on how many titles you have, and the transferring between computers/HDDs will be inconvenient.

    4-When ripping BD/DVD you have the problem of the settings like bitrates and compression which gets confusing to which is best combination you should use to get the most out of your BD/DVD.

    3-Plex transfers video over Wifi, it will probably stutter and put a load on the Wifi network

    @HobeSoundDarryl

    I don't buy BD player because, using a mac like Mac Mini will let me have a BD player (no region code worries), Youtube,iTunes, Netflix, and Video files player all in one machine to replace stuff Chromecast, ps3(netflix, DVD, BD), WDTV, and Apple TV. Also I live outside US, so any region A BD/1 DVD will not work here unless I have a US BD player which does not work because of electric voltage incompatibility. US is 120V and here is 220V, it will blow up. I can buy a US PS4 but that will cost $300 at least with shipping.
     
  6. roidy macrumors 6502a

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    Nottingham, UK
    #6
    Why not consider a multi region Blu-Ray player, like this:- https://www.amazon.co.uk/BDP-S5500-Wi-Fi-Region-Player-MultiSystem-Electronics/dp/B00Z7HLO6K

    Or one from the US, depending where you live:- https://www.amazon.com/Sony-S1500RF-System-Region-Blu-Ray/dp/B00VPGS1J0

    Or one of the many others that are available. Don't worry about the input voltage, 99% of all consumer goods now work from a wide range of supply voltages, generally 100-240v 50 or 60Hz

    You say you want to replace a long list of devices (Chromecast, ps3, WDTV, and Apple TV) with one device that will do everything, well most modern Blu-Ray players will do everything you want (Youtube, Netflix, and general video playback), the only thing they wont do is iTunes playback, only Apple device will do that.
     
  7. HobeSoundDarryl, Dec 23, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2016

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

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    #7
    roidy covered my specific counterpoint well. Thanks roidy!

    To Post 5 #1: The points are:1) that it seems more compatible with what you want to do- making your Mac your player instead of a dedicated device. Otherwise, you have to jump through a few hoops 2) a rip gives you great control of resulting quality 3) not everything is available in iTunes and if you don't keep a local copy, an iTunes file can removed at the Studio's discretion 4) you own a BD while you only "lifetime lease" a iTunes movie (and "lifetime" is loosely defined there), 5) an assumption that you probably already have some discs and probably would not want to rebuy those, etc.

    To Post 5 #2 & #4: yes ripping is a process, but the end result is a play anywhere & anytime file. The alternative involves having to get the various "middle man" pieces (mac & software) playing the disc every time you want to play a movie. If you are single, living alone, perhaps that does not matter. However, all you need is one less tech savvy family member and these tech hurdles can become frustrating hassles.

    To Post 5 #3: yes, it may stutter based on the robustness of your wifi network. Upgrade to faster wifi (router)? Any way to connect via Ethernet wire? That's a different problem. If you don't have any good options there and insist on using that Mac, rip your discs and/or buy from iTunes and store your movies on a hard drive attached to that Mac (eliminating wifi from the equation altogether).

    Again, a dedicated BD player for < $100 appears to solve all such obstacles and is much simpler for the less tech savvy to use too. You don't have to rip anything. You don't have to try to get Macs to work well in playing a BD disc. You don't have to try to get a chain of BD device to Mac through third party Mac software to TV to all work well when you want to watch a movie. Many BD players are "smart" with the most popular apps (Netflix, youtube, etc). A remote that comes with the player will easily control the player. Just put in the movie and push play.

    I may be too locked into a "simplicity" benefit. But your first post seemed to imply you were looking for that. If simplicity is important to you, either a dedicated BD player or the rip-into-iTunes options seem to be best options. If you don't mind jumping through some tech hoops, you can use middleman tech pieces to play BDs on your TV. But then you jump through hoops each time you want to play something.

    One more thought if maybe the aversion to buying a player is in the way: MacGo BD software for Mac is priced at $40. If you allow some kind of reasonably good remote purchase at maybe $40 (which seems low for a "good" remote to me), you invest $80 for just those 2 things. Do you already have the BD device hooked to your Mac? If that is also something that would need to be purchased, those 3 things will easily cost more-to-much-more than a good BD player.
     
  8. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #8
    Fair enough, I actually rip everything overnight, put it in a que and don't worry about it. I don't buy movies from the Apple iTunes store because that is the only place I can play them. If I don't have an apple device I can't watch them. I like being able to watch the items I want from any device. But I understand there is a lot of time to invest in ripping.
     
  9. mic j macrumors 68030

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    #9
    I have purchased movies from iTunes and can play them anywhere on any device, like any other ripped movie. Just download the purchase.
     
  10. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #10
    So you are telling me you can play an iTunes movie outside of the Apple eco-system? Or on any apple device? Apple DRM doesn't come into play if you want to play the movie outside of the apple/itunes system? If that is the case, this is new and a welcome addition to their movies. This wasn't the case before.
     
  11. mic j macrumors 68030

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    #11
    Well...you made me question that and you are right. It's an m4v which has DRM. I tried opening one in VLC and could not. I stand corrected. I was thinking it was an mp4. Sorry.
     
  12. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #12
    No worries, you actually had me excited that Apple had changed their DRM!!!! (I know it is not all Apple's fault with the DRM, movie companies want their product protected).
     
  13. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #13
    Of course the DRM comes into play. But the same applies to Blu-ray discs, where you also have to use tools that circumvent the DRM to be able to rip them ...
     
  14. mic j macrumors 68030

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    #14
    Unfortunately, there are a lot fewer tools for the m4v, they are basically screen recorders, and cost big bucks. But I may be behind on this subject as I mostly just stream stuff now.
     
  15. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #15
    If you look at what I responding to, you will see I was commenting on the fact you can't right now play an iTunes downloaded movie outside of the apple ecosystem. I realize there is DRM on blu-ray discs, but with software and ripping, you remove the DRM. So you can play them on any device, and for the most part pretty much any player. Of course it all depends on the format you rip to.
     
  16. MacBH928 thread starter macrumors 68020

    MacBH928

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    #16
    thanks I will take your input into consideration. As for that multi-region BD player its modded, which is not giving me a comfortable feeling that it works with no issues.
     
  17. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #17
    It is technically possible to remove the DRM from protected M4V files as well, which leaves you with standard MP4 files that you can play on pretty much any device too. There is at least one tool that does it losslessly (i.e. not by recording the stream). Of course, in some countries circumventing DRM isn't legal, but that's true for discs as well.
     
  18. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #18
    Do you happen to have the name of this tool? This might be something I could use to work into my workflow of ripping and streaming.
     
  19. From A Buick 8 macrumors 68040

    From A Buick 8

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    #19
    I use TunesKit, just used it over the christams break to make my iTunes movies (180 +) playable through Plex.

     
  20. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #20
    Outstanding! Thank you very much!
     
  21. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #21
    There is a tool called Requiem that is truly lossless. It still works, but hasn't been updated for a while and requires an installed iTunes version 10.7 or older. I can't comment on the commercial tools that are currently available, but I suspect at least some of them are not really lossless.
     
  22. From A Buick 8 macrumors 68040

    From A Buick 8

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    #22
    I do not pretend to be an expert on the subjest, but everything I have read about TunesKit says it is lossless. Not sure if it is a real test or not but the file size after using TunesKit it about the same size.
     
  23. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #23
    The safest way to tell is to take a lossless (!) screenshot (preferably at a hard to encode spot, e.g. with visible film grain or lots of fast motion), zoom into a section and compare. A lossless conversion will be pixel-for-pixel identical.

    An easier check is to download Mediainfo and load a file into it before and after conversion. Switch to "Text" view and scroll down to the Video section. The encoding parameters of the AVC stream, particularly the bit rate, stream size and also the "encoded date", should be identical (not just similar).
     
  24. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #24
    Thank you both for the info, this is pretty cool and thank you for the additional info.
     
  25. simon lefisch macrumors 6502a

    simon lefisch

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    #25
    Read a post about taking hours to rip a bluray. I use AnyDVD HD and ripping a bluray to my HDD only takes about an hour. Converting that rip to be playable on Apple TV/Android TV takes hours, depending on the setting you choose for quality. I always buy the BD and rip as it's good to have a hard copy in case you lose data. I'll never purchase movies from iTunes since I prefer to have the best audio possible and Apple TV does not pass thru DTS audio when streaming locally unless you use Infuse or put Kodi on the device.
     

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