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    Convert DVDs with Flask Mpeg
  • Extracting the DVD
  • Using FlasK Mpeg
  • Resizing in Flask
  • Convert DVDs with Mpeg2avi
  • Extracting the DVD
  • Using Mpeg2avi
  • Resizing in Mpeg2avi
  • Advanced DVD Conversion
    Convert DVDs with DVD2AVI
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  • Using Nandub
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    Advanced VirtualDub
    Digital Video Capture
  • Video Capture: Part 1
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    VCD & SVCD Guides
  • DVD to VCD
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  • DivX with Subtitles
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  • Multimedia DivX Pt 1
  • Multimedia DivX Pt 2
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  • Resizing DVD's
  • DivX Quality Guide
  • Bicubic vs Bilinear Resizing
  • Deinterlace Method Test
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  • Converting VCD to DivX

    Converting a Video CD (VCD) to DivX is usually easier to do than converting a DVD CD. But why convert? Simple, VCD's take up two 650MB CD-R's whereas DivX can fit on one CD-R with similar quality.

    Before I start here are the things you will need:

    DivX ;-) Mpeg-4 Codec 3.1alpha (or greater)

    Fhg Radium MP3 codec
    VCDGear 2.0
    VirtualDub 1.4c (or greater)
    Advanced Bitrate Calculator 1.8






    Extracting the Dat File

    Open VCDGear 2.0 by double clicking on it. Up pops this:

    Put your first VCD into your CD-Rom drive and choose the 'dat -> mpeg' option from the drop down list (A); then press load (B). Make sure 'Fix MPEG Errors' is ticked but uncheck the 'Remove CD-i MPEG Bumper'. Leave the rest default. Bingo! You have and mpeg file!

    Note: Many people are of the opinion that because they can play VCD *.dat files in most Mpeg players the *.dat file is the same as an Mpeg. This is not the case! A VCD mpeg is basically an Mpeg-1 file but just like the DVD VOB files the *.dat file also contains other pieces of information needed to play the VCD in a commercial VCD player. These files need to be deleted otherwise you will not be able to do anything with the Mpeg movie. This is why we need VCD Gear.


    Converting the Video and Audio to DivX with VirtualDub

    It seems that the latest version of VirtualDub does a much faster conversion of Mpeg-1 to DivX so I suggest you try this first! Also there is less chance of the audio going wrong this way because VirtualDub usually sees to that.

    Wait while it checks the movie to make sure its in the correct format to convert.

    Choose: Video > Full Processing Mode (checked below with a black dot).


    Video Compression

    And then: 'Video > Compression...'

    Up pops the following box below. Choose Mpeg-4 Low-Motion and hit the configure button (highlighted in red).

    The Up pops the codec options. Use one of the bitrate calculators that can be downloaded from Digital Digest to make sure the movie will fit into the size you need. 650kbps will usually fit ANY movie on a single CD, but you can usually get away with between 900 and 1000kbps for a 352 x 240 VCD movie for better quality see my quality guide if you are unsure about correct bitrate settings.


    Audio Compression

    Now select the audio settings by going to: Audio > Full processing mode (so the black dot appears by it).

    Then Audio > Compression.

    Up pops this box below. Choose Mpeg Layer 3 or DivX ;-) Audio 64kbps, 441 kHz, stereo. And press OK.

    That's it! Save AVI...

    Here we go! The picture on the left represents the original VCD movie and the one on the right represents the DivX version. This is great because unlike Flask Mpeg you can see what the quality will be like and change it before the file is finished =^). For even faster encoding you can set the priority settings to 'Highest' and turn off the 'Show input' and 'Show output' video by unchecking the boxes. These can be turned on at any time to see your progress.



    Some VCD's are just badly encoded! I have even bought "proffesional" VCD's that would not play on my VCD player! The weird thing is they play back perfectly in Media Player but when we encode them they sometimes have sections with pink and green blocks in them.

    On such substandard, or perhaps just corrupted mpeg files, I have tried all the main utilities: Flask Mpeg, Mpeg2avi and VirtualDub with no luck. I have tried fixing them with IFilmEdit, VCDGear and a whole bunch of others. The only thing that did a good job was Graphedit so check out my guide for converting "Stubborn Mpeg's to DivX (AVI) with Graphedit".

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