Watching movies on TV (via computer) and working on computer at the same time?

Chase R

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May 8, 2008
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If I were to connect a Mac Pro to a TV via the DVI output and using a DVI to HDMI cable, could I still work on the computer at the same time while the movie is being played on the TV. I want to rip my whole DVD collection to the HDD.

I know that I could do this with AppleTV but I want to be able to go directly from the Mac to the TV and be able to play movies in 1080 vs. 720.

Also, am I right to assume that the video quality would be the same through the Mac as opposed to a DVD player?
 

Lord Zedd

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Oct 24, 2007
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Denver, Colorado
am I right to assume that the video quality would be the same through the Mac as opposed to a DVD player?
It depends on the compression you use. You can rip the DVD and play the VIDEO_TS files right off your hard drive though VLC or Apple's DVD player, or you can compress the VIDEO_TS files using Handbrake to whatever quality you want.

could I still work on the computer at the same time while the movie is being played on the TV.
If you have two displays there is nothing stopping you from watching a movie/tv show on one and working on the other. You can also work over the video playing in the background.
 

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Chase R

macrumors 65816
Original poster
May 8, 2008
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It depends on the compression you use. You can rip the DVD and play the VIDEO_TS files right off your hard drive though VLC or Apple's DVD player, or you can compress the VIDEO_TS files using Handbrake to whatever quality you want.
So if I didn't compress the VIDEO_TS file, just ripped the DVD to the HDD, that would be the best quality? Also, could I still add the uncompressed VIDEO_TS file to my iTunes library for easy organizing?

If you have two displays there is nothing stopping you from watching a movie/tv show on one and working on the other. You can also work over the video playing in the background.
Thank you.
 

ab2650

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Jun 21, 2007
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So if I didn't compress the VIDEO_TS file, just ripped the DVD to the HDD, that would be the best quality? Also, could I still add the uncompressed VIDEO_TS file to my iTunes library for easy organizing?
That would be the best quality, but it's still compressed (DVDs are compressed video to begin with). It would appear exactly as if you were playing a DVD.

But... as far as I know you cannot import a VIDEO_TS (.vob files) into your iTunes library without re-encoding it, to something like h264. If you require iTunes to be able to load them, for instance if you have an appleTV you're streaming to, then you'll need to fire up handbrake (or visualhub).

If you're using frontrow to play stuff, you can put files of many more types in /Users/yourusername/Movies/ and it'll find it. If you're using VLC, store it wherever you like.
 

FightTheFuture

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Oct 19, 2003
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i would stick with the handbrake method instead of playing off the TS files - even though the quality may be better, a dual layer dvd would take up to 8GB of data and a handbrake'd movie would be more like 1.5GB. depending on how large your dvd collection is - this might be ideal for you.

also, if you use VLC you'll have to designate which is your 'full screen' monitor and which is your untouched monitor so you can work and watch at the same time.
 

Chase R

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Thanks for the help guys.

The HDD that I will be using is a 1.5TB so I think I will just leave them alone and not worry about compressing them. I don't think I even have over 120 DVDs. So at an average of 7.5GB each I'll only be using a little more than half of the HDD.

Just wondering: How big do you think an average Blu-Ray VIDEO_TS folder, or whatever they're called for BR, is?
 

Chase R

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Another thing. How does the quality of Apple's "DVD Player" compare to that of regular DVD players? Would playing DVDs via a DVD player result in better quality than "DVD Player" playing the VIDEO_TS folders? Does Apple's "DVD Player" upconvert the picture quality like the new DVD players do?