Mac DVD Ripping How To: Handbrake, MediaFork & Anamorphic Widescreen

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Filed under Apple Mac, Film, Internet, TV

31 responses to “Mac DVD Ripping How To: Handbrake, MediaFork & Anamorphic Widescreen

  1. I’m glad you enjoy it 🙂 Great review, most in-depth one I’ve seen yet.

    Here are a few very minor nitpicks:

    1) Preview images aren’t new, they’ve always been there.

    2) You don’t need QuickTime Pro; HandBrake does not use QuickTime at all.

    3) As explained in our documentation, you do *not* want to turn deinterlacing on all the time. It drastically reduces picture quality on most DVDs, especially of films, because those usually aren’t interlaced.

    4) HB isn’t donationware, it’s open source. In fact, we have a standing policy of refusing *all* donations.

    5) The presets also include some extra h.264 settings, that improve quality. When you check on 2-pass, you’re losing them. See this forum thread for a temporary solution until we get this fixed:

  2. Thanks for the positive review!

    I would like to offer one correction, though: HandBrake is not donationware. In fact, we don’t accept donations from users, period.

  3. Oh, and, actually… you do not need QuickTime Pro to get H.264 encoding. We use the x264 library to provide H.264 encoding.

  4. metroxing

    Thanks for the corrections – I’ll update – thanks!

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  7. Brilliant!! Thanks for such an in-depth review — I am going to try it out over the weekend. 🙂

  8. Very good in-depth article. I’ve found handbrake to be simple to use as well. I love open source!

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  13. zahadum

    the downside of handbrake is that you will lose vital content from the source dvd when converting.

    handbrake doesbt support closed captioning – which is MUCH more legible than subtitles.

    subtitles are burned-in to the video track, not sync’d up separately, so you have no choice about displaying them.

    no more than 1 aux audio track can be captured – so you are forced to chose whether you want to throw out the director’s commentary or the the dub in your own language or the soundtrack etc etc!

    no more than 1 subtitle language can be selected – this is a KILLER for second language learners who want to mix & match the original/adapted written & spoken languages.

    You wont get much joy from the devs at handbrake about this issue – they have just as much contempt as the folks at mactheripper (‘MTR’) regarding data integrity (they call it a “fringe” issue).

    It would be nice if handbrake at least offered a work-around where they output all the auxiliary
    content as separate files, if they cant figure out how to add (more) multiple tracks to an mp4 or a MOV container (obviously control/selection during playback is an issue: only mpeg2 players like dvdplayer or VLC have explicit concepts of aux tracks … even though mpeg4 is based on the quicktime MOV file format! and even though mpeg4 has much more sophisticated facilities for rich data types!)

    Basically, your only choice is to duplicate your work at the begining with MTR: one simple pass to decrypt the vobs; and another pass to demux the vobs so that you have discrete files for the audio subtracks & the subtitles …. you will have to skip handbrake, and manually add them into the resulting mpeg4 file with quicktimepro or whatever (assuming that you can figure out a way to rasterize the subtitles…. or OCR them so that they can be used as CC).

    NOTE: mtr will _NOT_ work on TS files once they are on your drive; mtr will work only on physical dvd itself. So once the first rip is done you can not go back & re-reip again in order to extract (demux) all these extra goodies. In other words, you still need to keep your original dvd collection FOEVER until this problem is solved (you cant go & sell your dvd collection, thinking that you still have all the ‘raw’ data backed up).


    what a mess.

    (METROXING: The point of Handbrake is to convert from VOB to MP4 – if you want the entire disc, use MAC THE RIPPER. Our comprehensive answer guide is here).

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  15. Thank you! nice in-depth review!

  16. […]Thanks for this tutorial.[…]

  17. Interesting article. Thanks for the information.

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  19. Nice post. Helped a lot.


  20. sammster21

    its a shame that you forgot to mention that when you use Handbrake and use the mp4 codec, the 5.1 surround sound on the disc is downmixed to 2-channel stereo.

    dont know about you but sound is as important as the image to me.

    for the ps3, at least, there is another way of transcoding dvd’s into a format that contains full dolby digitial and a great image quality.

  21. thanks, very interesting

  22. Thats real working, thanks!

  23. It drastically reduces picture quality on most DVDs, especially of films, because those usually aren’t interlaced.

  24. Oooo yeaaah:)very clever of you to write such post!brilliant!!thanks alot:))and its true indeed taht the 5.1 surround sound on the disc is downmixed to 2-channel stereo. Other information is important too:))thanks!

  25. Hi.
    Interesting article.
    Thank you
    And how to subscribe to RSS?

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