Handbrake - long encodes - Damage to MacBooks?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by iOrbit, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. iOrbit macrumors 6502a

    Mar 8, 2012
    i have a large film library i intend to put into my itunes, some 70+ HD films.

    it will take hours and hours and hours of encoding in handbrake. my question is- is doing this in a laptop (my macbook pro) going to break or damage it?

    im concerned that having the laptop run at high temps with fans full speed for hours and hours regularly will break it. or damage it.

    i got my 2011 mbp in march. i already notice that one of the fans has gotten nosier over time unlike when new. it seems to be normal when the laptop is flat down on a surface, but if i elevate it in different angles horizontally the noise comes in. sounds like a gentle grinding whine.

    anyone advise me on wether its safe or bad?
  2. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    1, fans die over the years, even the best ones. (In 4-8 years for high-end IBM Thinkpads. Dunno about MBP's in this respect.) Do you have AppleCare? You might want to get it swapped.

    2, I've done a lot of 100% CPU 10-12-hour-long reencodes on my late 2009 2.8 GHz C2D 17" MBP. No problems here.
  3. iOrbit thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 8, 2012
    i do have the standard warranty still (lasts till.. march next year, im not sure if intend to upgrade the warranty yet or buy another Macbook and sell this one to help fund the majority of the purchase)

    i'm very concerned about having apple work on my laptop, im cynical about receiving my Macbook back in the same cosmetic condition i gave it in. i dont know what guarantee there is in that area, and i take the condition of my macbook very seriously!

    how long does it take your macbook to encode a HD movie (20 - 30 gigs?)

    i think my macbook takes between 5-8 hours on average, unless its a long film (near or over 3 hours)
  4. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    Depends on the quality. I've benchmarked the main MKV (36 GBytes and, IIRC, 2.5 hours) of BD 1 of the international edition Red Cliff, which has a VC-1 stream, in both the official and the latest (some weeks ago) nightly of HB.

    Using Main profile, the conversion time under Lion and using a late 2009 3.06 GHz C2D iMac (which is some 10-20% faster, CPU-wise, than my 17" MBP), the conversion took exactly 3h:05min.

    With the High profile, the same took 9h:35m.

    That is, if you need absolutely the best quality and, therefore, use the High profile preset, you can think of about 4-5 hours on your 2011 MBP for a 2-2.5-hour-long movie, given that the CPU power of the 2011 models are about twice of the 2009 C2D ones. With the Main profile, waaaaay less - slightly more than an hour.
  5. iOrbit thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 8, 2012
    well what i do in handbrake is click Apple TV3 profile, change the FPS to same as source, make the aspect ratio strict, and set the quality bitrate to 18.5. i always use this settings, and the times i mentioned earlier are how long it takes for my macbook
  6. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    The ATV3 preset is between the Main and High presets, quality- and complexity-wise (Main is worse / less; High is better / more than the ATV3 preset); therefore, its time needs are also between these presets.
  7. slothrob, Oct 28, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2012

    slothrob macrumors 6502

    Jun 12, 2007
    I wouldn't worry about it. You are just using your computer for what it was designed to do, which it should be able to do for a long time. A notebook computer probably suffers a lot more wear and tear from being moved around than it does from running for long periods of time.

    Also, Macs are generally, with some exceptions, built well and with high quality components and tend to last a long time. A CPU will last longer than your tolerance for it's speed and a good hard drive can run all day for 5-10 years or more.

    The iBook I'm using right now, for example, has essentially been on since 2004 and has been used for 6-10 hours every day for it's entire life. It hasn't done much video encoding, but it has done a lot of audio processing. Any problems I have with it, which are few, are just due to physical strain, not computing: a few of the keys lost their markings years ago and a USB port finally failed after breaking off a flash drive in the socket about a year ago.

    Have you tried higher settings than 18.5? That's a bit extreme for an HD source. I'd be surprised if you could tell the difference between that and 20 or higher.
  8. dynaflash macrumors 68020

    Mar 27, 2003
    I have used mac laptops for *years* running HB an awful lot. Starting with the 17" pb with the g4 and two mbp's. never had a fan fail. The one thing that does tend to happen from the fans running at full tilt so much hour after hour is they do get full of dust eventually, including the heat pipe . So if anything a good internal cleaning might be warranted after a couple years. iFixit has good articles on taking them apart if you are so inclined to do it yourself.
  9. Fed macrumors 6502

    Jul 7, 2012
    This. Computers crunch ones and zeros. OP is just crunching ones and zeros. Unless you're crunching them on top of a radiator or pouring coffee over it...
  10. iOrbit, Oct 28, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2012

    iOrbit thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 8, 2012
    thanks so much guys, all of you. your posts have been very encouraging. i will be regularly encoding for the next weeks.

    the whole fan thing is inconsistent, most the time its quiet as normal, but sometimes in the past inc. recently, it has developed a noise as mentioned earlier, if it comes back or gets worse, i will take it to apple - but im still concerned about them not caring for my mbp cosmetically. i put a lot of care into taking care of it. i originally used the hard shall casing for the mbp but i don't use it indoors, only if i intend to go mobile without out the house which isnt going to be regular. i also use key cover, so the keys will look brand new till the day i sell it or retire it.

    yes i have, i'v taken my encoding slowly, iv had a blu-ray drive and the software for a couple months now but i never dived in fast, i decided to read nad learn about some good settings to make the film as identical to the source as possible. (such as strict anamorphic, large file size setting, understanding how to only burn force english subtitles only, audio etc.. and last but not least - the bit rate quality.)

    initially, i thought 20/19 was good enough, i was certainly pleased and impressed. especially the file size. but then i decided - let me compare the actual original source to this compression and see how much the quality is in fact compromised. and i concluded that its not very noticeable, but it is there. there is quite a difference in dark scenes between the 20-18 mark. there is also quite a difference in file size between the 18.5 mark and the 18.0 mark., its steady between 20-18.5 but after that it really leaps.

    anyway... in dark scenes, i noticed that the shading of dark and light and the colour tones, is not smooth anymore, shading tones become separated by pixelated lines instead of a nice smooth transition. i doubt im explaining what i mean very well but thats the difference i found. i didnt really want to reencode the first few films that i did already under the earlier setting but i concluded that - over time, HD sizes, and things like usb 3 technology will always get faster, and capacity will always get bigger. so i may aswell take on the slightly larger file sizes now rather than re do them again a bit later for quality i would have appreciated a bit more of. so thats what im doing.

    i just bought a 2 tb drive, and im expecting my 70+ collection to take up between 700-1000 GBs.

    my ideal is to have the sweetspot between very high quality video - close to source quality, but not too large file sizes. on average my file sizes are 10gbs each, sometimes more but not more than 15gb.

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