Quantcast Various Questions and Some Observations - digitalFAQ Forum
  #1  
02-04-2005, 05:14 AM
mitch mitch is offline
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I have read through all of your guides in order to glean as much info as
possible, but I am primarily interested in the "Capturing MPEG with an
ATI card" guide, as that is what I will be doing. My objective is to
convert 8mm home movies to DVD.

Applicable parts of my PC are as follows:

Hardware:
CPU: 3GHz P4 (with HT)
MB: Asus P4P800-E Deluxe
RAM: 1Gb Dual Channel DDR
Graphics: ATI AIW 9000 Pro
HD: WD1200JD using NTFS (plan to add a 2nd drive soon)
DVD ROM: Aopen DVD1648
DVD Burner: LG GSA-4082B
Sound: Currently onboard (plan to add a SoundBlaster soon).

Software:
OS: Windows XP Pro
Graphics: ATI Catalyst 4.12 driver group
Multimedia: ATI MMC 9.03

Questions
=========

In the ATI/MPEG guide, cropping recommendations are provided for VHS
and other non-live sources. Do you have any general cropping
recommendations for 8mm home movies, or should it be a case by case
basis where the user should test and see if there appears to be overscan
artifacts in captures?

Do you have any general recommendations for the ATI "Color" panel
settings (Gamma/Brightness/Contrast)?. When performing test captures
(mostly from TV) using default values, the captures appear to be
slightly darker than the source.

I have thoroughly read the ATI MMC 9.0 User's Guide (big document, over
200 pages) and while this document provides pretty good "how to"
information, there are places where some additional technical
information would be helpful. The application help screens provide a
bit more information, but not much more. For example, I first thought
that the audio was encoded as Dolby Digital (AC3) within the DVD MPEG2
presets, but after reading your "How to do video the digitalFAQ way"
guide, it appears it's encoded into MPEG2 audio (as both are valid audio
encodings for DVDs). Can you confirm this? I could not find this
anywhere in the ATI documentation (I may have missed it). I'm not
really complaining about the documentation. Overall I think the ATI
documentation is quite good.

Regarding audio encoding, when "48.000 KHz, 16 Bit, Stereo" is chosen
within the MPEG2 presets, does this mean that the waveform is sampled at
48KHz x 16 bits quantization = 768K bits/sec and this is then compressed
into the final 256K bits/sec (assuming 256Kbps is chosen) MPEG2?? audio
encoding? Does each stereo channel get an equivalent 128Kbps? (I'm
just trying to understand how this works. I notice 48Hz instead of
48KHz is referenced in the guides).

Sec. 2.4 on p. 6 of document
http://www.disctronics.co.uk/downloa...cs/dvdvideo.pd f references
a 1Gb size limit for VOB files. Does authoring software automatically
take care of this or is this something a user must know in advance and
take care of when authoring?

I have a couple of 8mm tapes that have some areas of distortion which I
believe a TBC might take care of, but I want to be sure before dropping
the cash to buy one. While on vacation a few years ago, my camcorder
(Sony CCD-TRV52) started "acting up". It started "cutting off"
intermittently and flashing a strange error symbol in the viewfinder and
LCD screen that was not documented in the user manual. At times
(usually after starting to record) there also would be a "tearing" of
the video that started at the top of the LCD screen (upon playback) and
slowly work its way down to the bottom of the screen. I managed to
still get some good video by doing lots of retakes, but wasn't able to
completely alleviate all bad spots in the tapes. After getting back
home, I sent the camcorder off to Sony for repair but after getting it
back, there was no real description as to what was fixed on the repair
invoice, just a flat fee for repairs. My hunch is this problem was
causing some kind of loss of video synchronization. Based on my
description, do you think a TBC would recover these issues?

I notice that along with the TBC-1000, Datavideo also makes a TBC-100
(card). It appears the main difference between these units is the
TBC-100 only has video ports (no audio ports). If I tried to save some
money by buying the TBC-100, would I be taking a chance that my audio
and video may not end up fully synchronized?

I know you use a TBC-1000. The AVT-8710 appears to be a bit less
expensive than the TBC-1000. In your opinion, is the TBC-1000 worth the
extra $$ ? (Per looking at the specs, it also appears the AVT-8710 does
not have audio ports).

Observations
============

My AIW 9000 Pro fails the MMC Configuration PC Check "Graphics Chip"
diagnostic test with a reason of "Not ATI RADEON or more recent" (passes
all other tests). I collected data, Emailed and opened a trouble ticket
with ATI Customer Service about this, but haven't gotten a reply back
yet. My guess is the test is misreading the chip.

I noticed your note, "After upgrading the system to Windows XP Pro, VBR
began to work with no dropped frames!" in the "Capturing MPEG with an
ATI card" guide. While I was going through this guide making sure I
knew how to set things up, I wanted to stress my system to make sure the
"frames dropped" counter was working. While performing a TV to MPEG2
test recording with nearly maxed out MPEG parameters (high bit rates,
VideoSoap filters set to 100%, etc.), I also did a disk search and was
opening and closing CPU intensive applications at the same time. When
the CPU Usage (per Windows Task Manager) got to 100%, I fully expected
to drop frames. I was surprised when no frames were dropping and became
concerned the counter was not working. I did this for a few minutes
driving the CPU Usage to 100% for 5 to 10 second intervals. I performed
this test 2 more times and finally got 1 frame to drop (the counter
worked!, note I was also doing this with 1 hard drive). I'm curious as
to if Microsoft maybe reworked the OS's scheduler for XP (Pro at least)
increasing the priority of video based applications/processes or if XP
is just that much more efficient than previous OSs. Anyway, XP (Pro at
least) seems to be very video capture friendly.

Thanks again for your help!

- mitch
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  #2  
02-04-2005, 10:07 PM
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Thoughts on setup:

CPU, motherboard, RAM, graphics/video, HDD, DVD ROM, burner, OS ... all look good.

Future planned updates of 2nd hard drive, SB audio card, look good

Catalyst probably fine.

ATI MMC 9.03 gets odd bug reports, but for now, let's assume you'll be fine. I still use ATI MMC 8.7 and ATI MMC 9.02 on my two ATI systems


Answers to questions:

8mm tape will likely be the same as VHS. Run tests to compare, but likely need to crop. That's fine. Never see it on tv anyway.

I raise gamma up 25-50% most of the time, it starts on what I refer to as a 0% settings. Kind of stupid for ATI to do, but so are many of their other defaults settings in MMC. All the others should be fine. ALWAYS REMEMBER to test settings, as the monitor and tv do not look the same. A "perfect" tv image will likely lack contrast and look a bit dark on the pc monitor (but not TOO dark).

You actually read the ATI documentation? Wow, I'm sorry. Keep in mind some of that stuff they write is mindless fluff. Most of it is correct, but the errors really are glaring errors that can make or break the output quality. It's also been a while since I read it (8 series) so maybe they fixed some of it (doubtful).

ATI MMC only does MP2 (MPEG Layer II) or WAV (PCM) audio. The new 500/550 series hardware MPEG encoders from ATI (the HD stuff) may add AC3, but it'll still be software, and therefore a CPU drain.

I have actually never really sat down to think through the theory of audio, but yes, it should be the total bitrate split by the number of speakers. Stereo would be 128 per speaker, which is excellent. As far as the math, I hate math. If you really want to know, I know who to ask. I've never given it much thought. Just know that 256k AC3 or MP2 is pretty much transparent to the source.

ATI MMC makes MPEG files, not VOB files. VOB is a DVD-Video storage format. If wraps audio, video, subtitles and navigation info into a single file, 1GB each to conform to ISO specs (or maybe it was UDF specs... forget). Anyway, you get the VOB from authoring. Authoring is when you make menus, etc. It does it for you.

Your hunch is probably spot-on. Sounds like a timebase errors that a standalone TBC would correct. At worst, maybe a tape error (does the tape look physically damaged?) or tracking problem (doubtful).

The audio is passed through. There is supposedly a 1-frame difference after processing, but even a super-genius with eagle eyes would never be able to see a delay of 1/30th a second. In fact, most audio/video is off by some degree (millisecond), something not commonly known. I've spent much time looking for such errors, and I can never see any. This is how TBC works.

The TBC-100 is $200, the TBC-1000 is $300. The beauty of the TBC-1000 is four outputs, useful when using several computers/recorders. If you want to save money, the AVT-8710 is fine too. It even has proc amp ability (very minor.. VERY VERY minor, as compared to full proc amp).


Observation responses:

Like I said earlier, odd bugs in 9.03. May be yet another one. Usually, this error means the drivers did not take, or that the drivers to not like that version of MMC (rare, but happens).

My system was slow, a Celeron 1.7, that dropped frames. I now have an AMD 2.8 in that system. Although the AMD has IDE errors galore, no problems with frames. The Celeron did work much better after ditching Windows 2000. I have never been convinced that OS was video-friendly. XP Home is a, excuse the language, but term is correct, "bastard" OS, being a sloppy mix of NT and 32 code (illegitimate offspring of two OS's that should have never been put together). So you see more problems than not on it, as compared to XP Pro (all NT code).

There are times when frames can be lost at 100% CPU usage and not reported. So you want to be careful of that scenario. The reasoning is the software does not run for a split second (freezes), so report does not happen. Only high powered video transcoding servers can achieve high MPEG use, but they're made specifically for that (not really a "computer" by consumer definition).



Hope all this helps..


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  #3  
02-05-2005, 05:23 AM
mitch mitch is offline
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Thanks! Being a newbie, I'm trying to read all I can get my hands on (within reason) regarding video. Thanks for letting me know about the bugs in MMC 9.03. At the time I pulled down the software a few weeks ago, I saw on ATI's web site (Customer Service area) where they implied a person is wasting their time opening a service request if they aren't using the latest software across the board. Even still, I had to go through multiple layers of "Did you read this?" and "Did you try this?" and I also had to collect and include specific data before their automated system would accept my report, which is OK I guess. I'm sure it cuts down on false problems and user issues for them. From now on, I may just go ahead and ask you and not bother with all the stuff they want. I'll try not to bug you too much!

I may have a few questions on some of the software packages (authoring, etc.) later. I will probably be using some of the less expensive software as I am trying to do this project on a budget.

Thanks again!
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02-05-2005, 09:11 AM
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Let me know your budget. I can usually find good software and good hardware for a good price.

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  #5  
02-08-2005, 01:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitch

I may have a few questions on some of the software packages (authoring, etc.) later. I will probably be using some of the less expensive software as I am trying to do this project on a budget.
I don't know what your budget is but if it's in the $400 range I'd suggest the Ulead Quartet package (keep in mind I'm a little biased towards Ulead )

Type in Quartet in the search box

Note that this version only comes with DVD Workshop 1.3 1.3-2 comparison which is more than sufficent for the average user. Also note that all this software is at least two years old which is why it can be had for $400.

It comes with 4 programs all integrate nicely:

1. Media Studio Pro 7- A powerful editing app. Actually contains 6 seperate components including video paint which is simialr to image editing app for video and CG Infinity for object manipulation.
2. DVD Workshop 1.3(w/ AC3 Plugin) - For authoring
3, Cool 3-D Production - A 3-D Text and object animation program, exports to images, AVI, or even sequential TGA files with aplpha channel for perfect overlays.
4. Photoimpact - Image editing program.

You also get the LE editions of Movie Factory and Video Studio which are stripped down but versions of the full program.



- thecoalman
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  #6  
02-10-2005, 08:24 AM
mitch mitch is offline
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Sorry for the few days delay. I've had some modem problems. I've now
tried 4 different V.92 modems that supposedly support V.92 features such
as Modem On Hold (MOH) and MOH hasn't worked on any of them. This last
modem was locking up my PC (even with the latest driver that was
supposed to fix this problem) so I had to return it to the shop that
built my PC and take back the previous one. Oh well...

I placed an order for a TBC-1000 with B&H (recommended on the "Playback
Hardware Suggestions" page). B&H seems to have a pretty good return
policy, so if the TBC doesn't happen to clean up my video, I should be
able to return it. However from LS's recommendations and also
additional articles I have read, I believe it should help a lot!

I got a RF modulator (I have an older TV) and connected my TV to my AIW
9000 PRO along with my PC monitor and watched a couple test captures
side by side. The color is definitely truer on the TV than on the
monitor (good!). The test captures have a reddish tint on the monitor.

Looking forward to getting the TBC and running the distorted tape spots
through it and see what happens.

Thanks again!

- mitch
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02-10-2005, 11:59 PM
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I feel for you. In the past 2 months, I've had to replace my backup software, a DVD burner, and a DVD ROM. A couple months before that, an entire motherboard/CPU and a failed hard drive. Technology can be a pain. Getting it to work is not nearly half as hard as KEEPING IT WORKING. Phew. I ditched dial-up in 1999 and I hope to never go back. Broadband only for me.

That "reddish" color sounds like chroma flaws. A DNR-based TBC (like on found in JVC S-VHS machines, not a standalone) or certain hardware encoder chips (namely LSI chipsets found in certain DVD recorders and capture cards) can overcome chroma noise. Even simply using S-VIDEO cables instead of composite could potentially clean some of it up. VHS and broadcast are full of chroma issues. Desaturating the color can also hide them.

Be sure your tv is set up to correct colors. A tv can be "off" too. They make VCDs and DVDs (some of them as cheap as $5 on eBay) to calibrate for this. You can make your own with the correct test patterns (sadly, I do not have them anymore, lost them last year in a hard drive crash, one of the few things that bit the dust). I want to hunt them down again in the future.



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  #8  
02-17-2005, 03:05 AM
mitch mitch is offline
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Hi. I got the TBC-1000 and did some test captures using a particularly
bad area of distortion in one of my videos. To my disappointment, the
TBC did not help. It actually appeared to add a couple of rolling
frames to the distortion in the video. After wondering what to do next,
I decided to take a look at the tape at this area of distortion. After
finding the tiny lever on the side of the 8mm cartridge (I had never
tried to open an 8mm cartridge before) releasing the sleeve and exposing
the tape, I found what looked like a scratch in the tape running
parallel to the edges of the tape for a few inches (obviously the
problem). Before ordering the TBC, I didn't really think it was the
tape(s) because this "distortion" exists on more than one tape, and
what's the probability of several different tapes being bad?
Apparently when my camcorder was "acting up" a few years ago, it must
have been doing something to damage the tapes (perhaps something loose
in the mechanics?). As I have had no "distortions" in tapes since the
camcorder was fixed, I assume something like that happened.

Other than these few distortions (tape scratches), I could not really
tell any difference with vs. without the TBC. I used the preset
values recommended in the "Capturing MPEG with an ATI Card" guide
and my test captures look quite good when viewed on a TV. I am inclined
to keep the TBC (not return it) as I know it's a primary piece of
equipment for video capture and I suspect I will need to use it
eventually anyway.

...

I also have the following software related questions...

MPEG2 Cutting, Splicing, and Minor Editing
==========================================
With my current project, all I need to do is make a few cuts and splices
and perhaps do some very minor editing (maybe a few fade ins and fade
outs). In the "Removing Commercials" guide I noticed Womble MPEG2VCR
and TMPGEnc Plus are referenced, with better recommendations for the
Womble product.

It appears TMPGEnc Plus tools has now been "improved" and turned into an
editor. Please see http://www.pegasys-inc.com/en/product/tme.html.
With cost being a factor (although there doesn't appear to be a large
difference in the costs) and perhaps product support as well (I'm a
newbie, but I'm pretty thorough about reading directions, etc.), which
of the following MPEG editors would you recommend I get for my project?

TMPGEnc MPEG Editor
Womble MPEG2VCR
VideoReDo (manufacturer/distributor unknown)

Authoring (and Editing??)
=========================
Leaning toward TMPGEnc DVD Author mainly due to the price and per the
"TMPGEnc DVD Author" guide, it appears easy to use. Fancier menus would
be nice, but I don't really have the budget for anything more. Per
http://www.pegasys-inc.com/en/product/tda.html, it appears to be up to
version 1.6 now. I don't believe I will need any of the plugins. This
software apparently also does "cut edits". As this may be all of the
"editing" I will need to do, should I be able to use this software
and not have to buy a "real" editor? Does it make clean breaks/splices
and preserve A/V synchronization?

Stills (Pictures) for Menu Backgrounds, etc.
============================================
I don't currently have Adobe Photoshop, and prices appear to be
around the $600 range. I do however have a Microsoft application called
Picture It! Publishing that is part of the Works Suite (I have Works
version 6.0). This application appears to be able to manipulate BMPs,
JPEGs, etc. (although not as well as Photoshop I'm sure). Do you think
I would be able to use this application to work pictures into menu
backgrounds?

Burning
=======
The "How to burn DVD with Nero" guide recommends using versions between
5.5.10.20 and 5.5.10.42. I'm having a hard time trying to find a
version within this range. It appears Ahead Software would like people
to buy their fully loaded (and possibly bloated??) "Nero 6 Ultra Edition
All-in-One Digital Media Solution" that goes for nearly $100.
Amazon.com currently advertises "Nero 6 Ultra Edition, New and Used" for
$4.99 up, but many of Amazon's resellers state, "This is NOT the Ultra
Edition." Apparently there is a "Nero Express" version that includes
Nero Burning ROM, but I'm not clear on what else it has. If I get some
OEM version from an Amazon reseller, do you think there would be
appropriate documentation included on the CD(s)? Also, my DVD burner is
a fairly recent model (LG GSA-4082B), so I would want to make sure the
software supports it. I suspect the software that came with my burner
(see below) would be OK for certain types of burning (packet writing
maybe), but I've always heard that Nero is the best. Can you recommend
the right Nero "package" and where I can get it?

Copying
=======
What is your recommendation regarding using a "built in" copy function
(in a Nero package for ex.) vs. using a tool like DVD Decrypter?

...

LG GSA-4082B Packaged Software
==============================
As mentioned above, I received a package of software with this burner
and I would appreciate your comments on it, if you are familiar with it.
My "hunches" as to whether each application is any good or not are
also below. I haven't really used any of it yet, but have read through
some of the documentation:

B's Clip 5 (BHA Corporation)
----------------------------
Purpose: Packet writing software, for "drag and drop" CD/DVD writing.
It says it's similar to Roxio DirectCD and Nero InCD.
My hunch: Probably fine for everyday use as a direct storage tool.

DVD-RAM Driver (BHA Corporation)
--------------------------------
Purpose: Packet writing software for DVD-RAM.
My hunch: Probably fine.

B's Recorder Gold 7 Basic (BHA Corporation)
-------------------------------------------
Purpose: Primarily burning software. Also does copies, etc. Full
functionality requires an upgrade using an "Extension Kit" ($20). The
full version also does "MPEG2 Encoding & Decoding", "DVD Authoring", etc.
My hunch: May be OK for basic burning, but should probably stay away
from the encoding, authoring, etc. functions. Would you recommend Nero
over this application for burning?

PowerProducer 2 Gold (CyberLink)
--------------------------------
Purpose: Appears to try to be an "All-In-One" software suite.
My hunch: Probably should stay away from it.

PowerDVD 5 (CyberLink)
----------------------
Purpose: DVD playback (decoder).
My hunch: Probably OK? How would it compare with ATI's MMC (9.03) DVD
player/decoder?

Thanks again for all of your help and recommendations!

- mitch
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  #9  
02-17-2005, 06:24 AM
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TBC-

Yes, normally when I see weird errors, I check the tape first, the physical condition of it. Anything like scratches, wrinkles, curls, etc., will muck up the tape quality from this damage. However, you will surely need a TBC at some point in time. I use one on just about everything. While many people can last for a long time without one, it eventually becomes an inevitable addition, should you continue working with video.

++++++++++++++

MPEG Editors-

Pegasys TMPGENC MPEG Editor is a wholly inferior tool. Like the TMPG tools, it is still only an I-frame cut (the last one I used, at least), and is subject to MPEG codec oddities like the encoders.

Note: An I-frame is the master frame of a GOP (group of pictures). MPEG is a compression format that compresses both "within the frame" and "between frames". GOP is how "between frames" works. GOP is made of I, P and B frames. Only one I frame person many P/B frames. If you don't care that your cuts can be 1-2 seconds wrong, then you'll be fine using an I-frame-only cutter.

When you use something like Womble or VideoRedo, there are no oddities, and the cuts are precise. New I-frames are created when needed. I highly suggest Womble MPEG-VCR. VideoRedo would be second choice. I suggest you download trials for VideoRedo or Womble, see which one works best, what you like. I have been using Womble since 2003, with ATI files and other files. It's excellent, and easy to use. See the "commercial removing" guide on this site.


+++++++++++++++++++++++++

Authoring software-

TDA (Tmpgenc DVD Author) does NOT do precise cuts, as an editor. It only cuts at an I-frame. If you don't care that your cuts can be 1-2 seconds wrong, then you'll be fine using it.

TDA is easy, and very cheap. You can also buy something like DVDit! PE (version 2.x, NOT version 5.x) for $149 (new from sonic.com, dvdit.com), which would be better, in terms of nav info (TDA has serious flaws here in terms of menus not always working correctly), and DVDit! has better menu design. But it all depends on budget. DVD-Lab is $99, but has a lot of bugs too, and is not at all easy to learn (I in fact, still have trouble with it, even though I can use a monster like DVD Studio Pro).


++++++++++++++++++++++++

Menu images-

Adobe Photoshop Elements is about $50-99 in stores.

You can also shop eBay for used versions of software (check feedback to make sure it is legit software). You could EASILY use something as old as Photoshop 4 and love it. I use version 6, and version 5 on my laptop. They are currently on 8 (called "CS"), but I don't need to upgrade for any reason whatsoever. A quick look at eBay just now (search "adobe photoshop" or even "adobe photoshop elements") showed buy it now prices (no bidding needed) of as little as $20 for a nice Photoshop (retail, legit editions). HIGHLY worth it. I saw some full version 4's and 5's for like $30-50. Amazing. Unlike most software, Photoshop has not changed much AT ALL since v5. All the v4 lacked was WEB GIF/JPEG EXPORT, not needed for DVD menus.

Will what you have now work? Maybe. But you'd probably love Photoshop, and if you can get one for well under $50, I'd say jump on it.


+++++++++++++++++++++++++

Burning-

You can download a trial of Nero Burning Rom 5.5.10.56 here (any 5.5.10.x version works well):
ftp://ftp4.nero.com/Nero551056.exe
It is the FULL VERSION, and I bet they'd still let you buy it.

Nero 6 has SERIOUS FLAWS when it comes to the DVD-Video templates, and just DVD burning in general. My new Pioneer 109 burner cannot use Nero 5.5, so I've been forced to switch to RecordNow Max 4.5, using a hacked driver from a famous drive/firmware hacker (flashman), which let's the software see the drive.

I've been talking with people for a month now on this problem, and conferred with several other pros that have just had to up and abandon Nero finally. It's just not very good anymore. They broke it. Version 5.5.9.x was bad too. 5.5.10 fixed it, but 6.0 broke it again. It's really random too.

I could go into other options, but see how Nero 5.5 works first. Install the demo and goto





++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Duplication (copying)-

Again, with Nero, we hit errors. I abandoned Nero's "copy disc" feature in early 2004 because it gave more coasters (bad burns) than not. Nero is slightly bloated, in terms of using system resources, so it would interfere with buffers and other odd things tended to happen. I've been burning CD media since the early/mid 90s, and DVD media since it came out in 2001. This software is just whacked (not user error). Even 5.5 was not good for duping. None of them are. Not even for CD (use CloneCD for duping CDs).

I've been using RecordNow Max and Prassi PrimoDVD (older software) to duplicate with. They were safe. DVD Decrypter is also safe, though it requires an extra step (disc to hard drive, back to new disc). I have a DVD-ROM and DVD burner, set up on different IDE channels, so I can do "on-the-fly" copying (meaning no middleman). Most people don't have this kind of setup, so Decrypter ISO Read, ISO Write is perfect.

This also ONLY applies for discs you made, or ones that are not copy protected. Copying protected discs is covered in the guides on digitalFAQ.com, and is honestly not something I do much of (I mainly make new content and dupe it for clients or whomever needs it).


+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

OEM bundled software-
In general, freebie software is junk.

B's Clip 5 ... this is "packet writing" software. It let's you do multisession burns, but no softare is required. This integrates with your system, and let's you use a CD/DVD like a floppy or any other storage drive. I HATE THEM, AND NEVER USE THEM. Most people never need it. Search google for "packet writing" and "trouble" and you're likely to see some horror stories. I have lived some myself. Stuff like InCD, etc ... NEVER allowed on my computers. I don't need it, and I don't want to deal with it. I'll use software if I want to burn. Windows has enough problems as it is, without integrating burning software too.

DVD-RAM driver... it's a driver. Fine.

B's Recorder Gold 7 Basic ... most people use this for burning music CDs if they have it. It's sort of a crappy burning program. Nothing special.

PowerProducer 2 Gold ... stay away. This is an all-in-one tool, and I've seen it obliterate capture card drivers. It destroyed my primary ATI system setup once. Was version 1 I think. Not good for anything, not to me, not if you value stability (software) and quality (video).

PowerDVD 5 .... excellent. I use this for all my MPEG/DVD viewing. I like the tools, of which ATI's player has none. I have not used my ATI player since probably 2002.





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  #10  
02-21-2005, 05:20 AM
mitch mitch is offline
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Hi. While reviewing the "Media ID Quality Guide" and "Branding Guide"
in the "Blank Media & Quality FAQ" document, there appear to be a few
differences between the html page and the pdf. Is the html page the
most recent?

Thanks!
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  #11  
02-21-2005, 06:47 AM
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Well, technically, the "most recent" version is sitting on my hard drive, awaiting full updates. Because I restructured the site, all the way down to the base code (but same design), I have to wait until it's totally complete before I start to upload it. Otherwise, it'll just be one huge honkin' mess.

But yes, the PDF on the site right now is outdated as compared to the HTML.

I've been busy breaking down some pretty daunting information into clean little images so the masses can understand the information. It's ridiculous that information has to be so hard and so complex. Luckily, I'm almost done. The new site is going to be much better organized and more in depth, WITHOUT sacrificing simplicity.


Just for you ...
... here is the updated FEBRUARY 20th 2005 update:
DOWNLOAD IT HERE: dvdmedia.pdf

Let me know how you like it.




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  #12  
02-22-2005, 04:24 AM
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Thanks for the updated doc! This info will definitely help keep people
(especially newbies like myself) from scratching their heads wondering
why their disks didn't burn or won't play.

Regarding Nero, I downloaded the referenced version from the ftp
site, however wasn't able to test it as I got the error, "Your demo
version has expired." (already closed). I had also just previously
downloaded a 5.5.10.42 eval version from http://www.oldversion.com/ and
had the same problem. Do you think Ahead is trying to force people to
go with 6.0+ for new purchases?
- mitch
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  #13  
02-22-2005, 07:15 AM
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That sounds like you previously had a trial version of Nero 5.5.x on your system, and Nero sees this, and will not let you "re-trial" the software. You may need to scrub your system. Delete any "AHEAD" or "NERO" folder from you "program files" directory, and then scrub the registry for any "AHEAD" entries.

Even if the trial expires, you should still be allowed to purchase it.

Looking around online, it appears that the LG GSA-4082B not only works with Nero 5.5, but some of them may have even come with it (yours apparently did not, you simply got a different release, or OEM-retail/LG-retail differences). The LG GSA-4082B appears to be a nice old drive, easier to manage than these brand-new drives.



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  #14  
02-24-2005, 12:21 PM
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Hi. After taking a look at my registry (after uninstalling), I found
Nero items practically throughout, so after searching for another
possible way, I found that setting the date back by one year (2004) in
Windows fooled the eval version and I was able to access it! I went to
the "Choose Recorder" screen of Burning ROM and my burner was listed, so
I assume 5.5.10.56 supports it.

I went through the Ahead/Nero online order form (linked from the eval
version) all the way to the credit card input and nothing but version
6.0+ options were listed. I then found an E-mail address for U.S. sales
(us-sales@nero.com) and sent an E-mail requesting how I can purchase the
5.5 version. I'll continue to play with the eval version and get use to it.
- mitch
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  #15  
02-24-2005, 01:18 PM
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http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...GB2/102-441296 8-0615318

http://www.pricegrabber.com/search_g...?masterid=4177 76&search=nero+5.5

You can get it for as little as $5 from some of these PRICEGRABBER sites.


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  #16  
03-05-2005, 02:14 PM
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This post/update is primarily for people who need to buy Nero Burning
ROM (NBR) 5.5. This is what I did...

I noticed that many of the sellers off of the Amazon.com link appear to
be selling version 6.0 products (after clicking "used & new", please
reference the "Comments" sections). I purchased from the
PriceGrabber.com Storefronts merchant "globe2000" and paid through
PayPal. I included a note to the seller that I wanted the full NBR 5.5
version that would work with any recorder/burner (as opposed to an
"Express" version). I received the OEM version CD through US Mail
Parcel Post after about a week (sent from Sunnyvale, CA). There was no
tracking involved, I just waited for it. The NBR version on the CD was
5.5.9.14 (very old), however a Serial Number/key was also included. I
actually downloaded the 5.5.10.56 version NBR from
http://ww2.nero.com/us/Update_Nero_Burning_ROM.html and used the SN/key
to activate it. In fact, it appears to be basically the same file I
accessed for the evaluation version.

So don't get discouraged if you receive an old OEM version CD. Just use
the SN/key to activate the latest (last) NBR 5.5 version (5.5.10.56).

Hope this helps some folks!
- mitch
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  #17  
03-05-2005, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitch
In fact, it appears to be basically the same file I accessed for the evaluation version.
Actually, it is the very same file.

You could have simply entered the newly purchased 5.5 serial into the demo to unlock it.

Pretty much any 5.5 serial works on any 5.5 version.




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  #18  
03-13-2005, 09:04 AM
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Hi. I wanted to ensure I understand the requirements for a couple of
authoring tools before making a purchase (or before spending a lot of
time downloading and testing eval versions). I am capturing 8mm video
with an ATI card to MPEG2. It is my understanding that the ATI card's
MPEG2 DVD presets capture to MPEG2 video and MPEG2 audio (combined/muxed).

It is my understanding that Sonic DVDit! (all versions) does not support
MPEG2 audio and the MPEG2 audio will need to be demuxed, converted (to
WAV and then AC3 for example), and then recombined with the video in DVDit!.

It is my understanding that TMPGEnc DVD Author does support MPEG2 audio
(already muxed with MPEG2 video from ATI capture).

Your confirmation is appreciated.

I have also learned that apparently there is a new "bundle box" version
of TMPGEnc DVD Author 1.6 called Tsunami MPEG DVD Author.

Thanks!

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  #19  
03-16-2005, 12:15 PM
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TDA takes muxed MPEG-2 with MPEG Layer II audio, yes.
So does Ulead DVD Workshop.

Understand that MP2 is not 100% compliant with DVD-Video specs, which is why DVDit! PE does not ... it follows the specs to the letter.

Both Ulead DVDWS (www.ulead.com)and TDA (www.pegasys-inc.com) have trials on their software. I would at least try out some software before committing money.




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