SD DVD bad quality

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by WoOdPiPeS, Jan 14, 2010.

  1. WoOdPiPeS macrumors member

    Jan 12, 2008
    Hi all,
    I have a problem with the final quality of a film, on a sd dvd. This is a 80min project, recorded with Panasonic HPX-2100. Recording format is DVCPRO50.
    Quality on FC is very good, but when exporting to compressor and choosing the settings (DVD max. quality, 90min) in order to get the files for the dvd studio, and finally to burning the dv;..., the resoult is not good enough.

    Do you know other way to get more quality?

    Thanks in advance,

  2. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    What are the settings in DVD Studio Pro?

    Where does the DVD look bad? TV, computer monitor, somewhere else?

    Can you make comparative screen shots?
  3. WoOdPiPeS thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 12, 2008
    I didn't change any settings in DVD Studio Pro... and I don't think that this software matters on the dvd...
    I'm compressing the timeline, sending it to Compressor, and with the maximun quality for a 90minutes standard DVD settings.
    The resoult are two files: .m2v and .ac3 that I put on the DVD Studio Pro project. I don't know why DVDSP should change those files, due they are in a DVD native format... aren't they?
    The project will be shown on a local TV in Spain (pal), and the producer says is not enough quality... I think is because he's comparing too much with the canvas at FCP...
    I can't do a screenshot from the DVD on a tv...

    Any idea?

  4. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    You can do a screenshot from the DVD in your Mac though.

    But I really have to wonder what TV station* would accept a DVD as broadcast medium, as that footage is quite compressed.**

    How big are the resulting files after Compressor?

    And have you taken a look at DVD Studio Pro's settings?

    How long does it take for DVD Studio Pro to build/format the DVD?

    **When I have to deliver a show (20-45 minutes) I have to deliver in 1:1 quality for Digi Beta material, and in DV 25 4:2:0 for DV material. Nothing less.
    That's 40 to 80 GiB per show on an external HDD that is given to the colour corrector and then digitized onto a Digi Beta tape.

    * A local station, I haven't recognized it the first time I read your post. I knew some that would even use S-VHS tapes, but that was in the nineties.
  5. WoOdPiPeS thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 12, 2008
    It seems the DVD is going to be sold aswell,... not only for the local TV.
    The project (including the DVDSP menu), is 4,1Gb.
    I enclose a picture about the DVDSP settings... but I still don't know what is the relation between that settings and the final video quality, if the video is compressed with Compresor...
    How long it takes? no idea,... but I'll let you know in my next try.



    Attached Files:

  6. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    DVD Studio Pro settings look good. I wanted to know just to be sure, and maybe someone else could have had an idea.

    Can you post comparative screenshots of the DVD?
    One frame exported from the Final Cut timeline, and one from the DVD (can be done via CMD+SHIFT+4) would suffice.

    If the 80 minutes video is around 4GB (how big is the .m2v file exactly, not the project), then it is cutting it really close to borderline bad.

    Video DVDs use MPEG-2 as their compression codec, and normally video DVDs use 9GB media instead of 4.7GB media.
  7. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    The screenshot you gave is of the DVD Studio Pro settings which are only used if you don't use Compressor first. It sounds like you are using Compressor, so that doesn't matter.

    What we care about is in Compressor. Follow this checklist to make sure you're doing everything right. I'm worried that you missed something but we have no way of knowing what.

    Try this:

    1) In Final Cut, make sure the timeline window is selected (not the monitors, but the actual timeline) and go to FILE > EXPORT > USING COMPRESSOR

    2) In Compressor, find that 90 minute MPEG setting again but don't use it. Instead, select it and click the icon with the "+" in it. This will duplicate it.

    3) Now, click on the duplicate and look in the INSPECTOR window. Manually set VIDEO FORMAT, FRAME RATE, ASPECT RATIO, and FIELD DOMINANCE to match your video.

    4) Go to the Quality tab and set it to TWO PASS VBR BEST - Average 6.0 MAX 7.1

    5) Change the NAME of this preset so you know what it is.

    6) Drag that one onto your video and compress. You can use the same audio file as before.

    Let us know how that one looks!
  8. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California

    You are trying to fit a 90min show onto a single layer DVD????

    That is the problem. Of course it will look like crap. Nothing you can do about it.

    Standard commercial DVDs that are sold in stores are roughly twice the size of a single layer DVD. What you have done is compressed the video to more or less about 1/2 the size that people are used to seeing.

    What you need to do is buy some double layer media. Or better, a bluray burner.
  9. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    I'm sorry, but this is simply incorrect.

    90 minutes is not too long if VBR compression is used.

    You want proof? Look no further than most TV show DVDs. For example, I'm looking at my Deep Space Nine disks here. They put 4 episodes on 1 disk. That's roughly 180 minutes of video. Of course, they're using a dual-layer disk, so let's cut that in half: 180/2 = 90.

    So Paramount is getting 90 minutes per layer on their Star Trek DVDs, the same as this guy is trying to do. Do you think that they're putting out 'crap' Star Trek DVDs?

    Granted, that's 24p footage, which makes it easier, but if they're getting 'excellent' quality from that, surely he can get 'really good' quality even if he's using 60i or 50i or 30p.
  10. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Gotta disagree w/that. Anything up to 120min is very doable on a single layer DVD. 120min of wall-to-wall super fast action, explosions, etc., will probably not look great but that's a very realist scenario. Even for huge action movies there are plenty of 'calm' scenes to ramp down the bit rate to save space for the more visually complicated scenes.

    What really separates commercial DVD quality is the skill of the compressionist and the higher end gear (better quality encoders, etc.,) they work with. Also, if the source footage is 24fps and the DVD is 24fps you save space compared to working w/30fps video.

  11. WoOdPiPeS thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 12, 2008
    Thanks a lot, you all,... for your answers.

  12. treehorn macrumors 6502


    Aug 21, 2007
    We are gnashing our teeth over this at work...publicists are wanting B-roll on DVD to give out to news shows (local AND national - and this is the NYC Metro area!). We also have a weekly TV show we put together and get lots of reels on DVD...and even Youtube quality quicktimes on CD/DVD-Rs.


    And then they bitch that it doesn't look good on HDTV of course...

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