iDVD help

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by axeldtf, Dec 18, 2010.

  1. axeldtf macrumors 6502

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    #1
    I have been recently messing with iDVD. I burned 4 movies at 1280 x 720 resolution. When i watch the dvd project on my dvd player the edges are cut off. Is this normal? Is there something i'm doing wrong?
     
  2. -DH macrumors 65816

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    #2
    Since the DVD format supports standard definition only, it's likely that your HD video is being cropped to fit the normal SD 4:3 aspect ratio. I don't use iMovie, but there should be a setting to create a wide screen DVD - however, it will still be SD.

    -DH
     
  3. axeldtf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #3
    Right, when i opened idvd to create the project i selected the wide screen option. Still it crops of my edges. Not sure what to do, I'm looking to make some professional dvds for gifts.
     
  4. -DH macrumors 65816

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    #4
    Are you watching this on a TV? If it's only cropping the very edges of the image, it may just be that it's cutting off the area outside of the Safe Action area, which is normal for TV viewing. That's the way it works ... and precisely why there's a Safe Action area to begin with.

    -DH
     
  5. Dave Braine macrumors 68040

    Dave Braine

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    #5
    What's the screen resolution of your TV? Could the problem be because of this:
    From a Wikipedia article.
     
  6. axeldtf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #6
    Ok, that is definitely a possibility, my lcd tv is 720p, so should i change the resolution to 720 and then burn it?
     
  7. -DH macrumors 65816

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    #7
    If you're viewing on a TV, the edges will still be cut off. Read about Safe Areas here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safe_area#Action_safe_area

    -DH
     
  8. xStep macrumors 68000

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    #8
    The problem may be dependent on the version of iDVD you are using. So, what version of iDVD are you using.

    To be clear, your exported video files are 1280x720? You double checked the iDVD project properties to confirm you have wide screen choosen?

    Does it play back properly in Apple's DVD Player application on your Mac?

    What kind of TV are you playing back on?
     
  9. axeldtf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #9
    No, when i play it on my dvd application the outsides aren't cut off, however the quality is grainy. i am using idvd 7, and i should mention that i'm using the magic dvd option. I am gonna upgrade to ilife 11 soon so maybe that version of idvd will be better
     
  10. xStep macrumors 68000

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    #10
    Buying iLife 11 gets you nothing new for iDVD or iWeb. Zero.

    When you play back on your Mac using DVD Player, are you playing back in full screen or actual size. For previewing you should play back in actual size.

    I haven't used the magic dvd option so don't know what it does. I create my projects and then drag in my video after picking a theme. Did it today with a 1280x720p source file and it played back clear with DVD Player app. I don't have a DVD player that can play home made disc.

    To save on discs, I use "Save as Disc Image..." or "Save as VIDEO_TS Folder...". Then you can use Apples Disk Utility to burn to a real disc.
     
  11. iFergal, Dec 20, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2010

    iFergal macrumors newbie

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    #11
    iDVD encodes @ 960 x 540 max!

    iDVD is a standard definition DVD encoder with a maximum resolution of 720x576 for PAL or 720x480 for NTSC. Your 1280x720 video is classed as High Definition resolution and will be re-sampled, re-sized, re-coded and therefore quality-compromised by iDVD. To get the best results from iDVD you need to render your movies out to a resolution that iDVD will comfortably encode without too much re-processing. Thru trial & error using iMovie and iDVD for several years, i've found that it's best to import at standard definition in the first place if your ultimate display format is to be standard definition DVD (if you import at HD then export to iDVD, the results are awful despite what iDVD help menu says!). So, if you are making a PAL DVD with video edited in iMovie then you should export at 960x540 (the 540 refers to the number of horizontal lines closest to 576 & is the significant number as far as iDVD is concerned). If you are making an NTSC DVD then you should export to the resolution closest to 720x480 (i dont know what software you are using or which country you are in). Note that your videos will always be cropped slightly when viewed on a TV thru a dedicated DVD player, wether they've been encoded properly or not, that's just how it is. Your computers DVD player does not crop the video because it works differently. The only way to get HD onto a video disc is to use BLU-RAY which i havent bothered with since standard DVD is good enough for me & most of the people I deal with.
     
  12. axeldtf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #12
    Thank you iFergal,
    That was very helpful as were all the responses, i will definitely mess around with my vids a little more until i figure out the right process. Thanks again!
     
  13. axeldtf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #13
    ... Also, what would be the best way to get the best quality of these videos on a standard blank dvd-r? Should i just burn them to a disc using toast or something like that?
     
  14. xStep, Dec 22, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2010

    xStep macrumors 68000

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    #14
    Well, you can use Toast to put Blu-Ray HD content onto a DVD. The Blu-Ray spec allows for this, so up to date Blu-Ray players should understand the discs. Naturally your playback time will be very limited due to the small size of DVDs.

    Also, you said the iDVD encodes at 960x540 max. That doesn't make sense to me. The NTSC and PAL standards are different than that so I'd expect iDVD to encode at one of those. Also, just in case, iDVD can use 1280x720 as a source just fine. Lastly, iDVD always re-encodes what you give it. So, I'm confused by some of you are saying.

    I agree that it may be a good idea to create a render closest to what iDVD will produce. Perhaps iDVD will not muck with the sizing and therefore give a better result. I must admit I haven't experimented along those lines.
     
  15. iFergal macrumors newbie

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    #15
    axeldtf: I personally think iDVD gives much better results than Toast but you may want to try selecting "Professional Quality" in the Encoding options of the Project Info window of iDVD. How did you shoot your original footage & what with? Was it HD 1080, 720 or SD? Are you using iMovie to edit? Are you making a PAL or NTSC DVD?

    xStep: The title of my post was incorrect & I was unable to edit it - Apologies for the confusion.

    When exporting a widescreen movie from iMovie for use in iDVD, the best "size" would be "Large" = 960x540. Now, when you play this file on your computer, it will display the full 960x540 pixels but once its transcoded by iDVD and you play the two versions side by side on your computer, you'll notice a difference in quality because iDVD has taken out "columns" to reduce the 960 to 720 and added "rows" to turn the 540 into 576 but then displays it on your computer at an apparent 1024x576... Cofusing?... I know!... but its because iDVD has actually stretched the widescreen movie vertically to cram as much data as possible into the 4:3 space which is actually the ratio all standard definition DVD encoders encode to. Standard DVD players then turn this 4:3 elongated "widescreen" movie into a 16:9 movie on your TV or computer. The same re-scaling would happen to your 1280x720 file when processed thru iDVD.

    This article may help clarify: http://www.michaeldvd.com.au/Articles/PALvsNTSC/PALvsNTSC.asp

    iDVD will accept lots of different sizes & formats and its a matter of trial & error as to what works best for you and your set up & how you want to view & distribute your media but as a general rule, when it comes to transcoding: less is more... if you know what i mean.

    I dont much about Blu-Ray or how it manages compression/de-compression. I just havent bothered to get into it as I believe it will be redundant soon enough & everything will be distributed on solid state media or thru the internet.
     
  16. axeldtf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #16
    It's a mixed bag of footage, some was recorded from my sony hd camera at 1920 x 1980.. Some were movie clips i downloaded which were also at 1920 x 1080.. those i opened in quicktime and adjusted the resolution to 1280 x 720. Should i adjust them to 720 x 408? I'd like to get the highest quality out of my videos. even if they have to span many discs
     
  17. xStep, Dec 23, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2010

    xStep macrumors 68000

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    #17
    If you want to safe your final edits, then export them at a high bit rate in a codec of your choice, say H.264. Then use Toast to safe them to one more discs. Toast can automatically span several discs. What I can't remember is if they also put a recovery software on the discs. I thought in later versions than perhaps I have that they did have an automatic recovery software on the discs and it worked with Windows too. Do some checking.
     
  18. iFergal macrumors newbie

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    #18
    The answer to your question depends on your answer to the question: Are you making a PAL or NTSC DVD and what, if any editing software are you using?
     
  19. iFergal macrumors newbie

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    #19
    if the movies are to be watched on a standard DVD player and not just saved as DVD-ROM files, then exporting at a bitrate higher than 4 Mbps will make no difference. Encoding files for watching thru a DVD player and archiving the original files to disc are two entirely different things. I may be misunderstanding the original question but I got the impression that "axeldtf" wants to make DVDs that are playable on a domestic DVD player.

    Ps: Did you read my last post on Dec 22? Did it make sense to you? It was addressed to both you and axeldtf but i dont know if you realised that because you didnt comment on it.
     
  20. xStep macrumors 68000

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    #20
    Or perhaps I read too much into it when he/she mentioned spanning discs.


    I didn't feel a need to respond.
     
  21. xStep macrumors 68000

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    #21
    This is a very good point.
     
  22. iFergal macrumors newbie

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    #22
    Well, perhaps i shouldnt have bothered wasting my time then.
     
  23. axeldtf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #23
    They are NTSC discs, I guess trial and error is the definitely the key. Thanks guys for all your responses, I am trying to just get the best quality to play universally. And my vids from the HD camera to still look HD in some way.
     
  24. xStep macrumors 68000

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    #24
    Why? You explained it better. I got it. What exactly was there to respond to?
     
  25. iFergal macrumors newbie

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    #25
    When someone has taken the time out of thier day to educate, enlighten or help you, it is civilised & polite to give some feedback on the information or at least say thanks, i get it now. Thats how civilised conversations work. It is rude & ignorant to say nothing.

    Perhaps I am dealing with someone who has not been taught any manners, in which case, I apologise, it is not your fault, but perhaps you will learn from your experience here.
     

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