Seeking friendly advice on encoding DVDs & BluRays for Kodi playback via HDMI & HD
#1
Good day!
Seems to be a fantastic collection of folks here, so I am sure there must be a couple who know these answers (or have an opinion) in their sleep... ;-)

Have lots of DVDs & BluRays. Have the players to play them back, when I really REALLY want the high quality ... but also am building out more and more Kodi boxes (via FireTVs) and media servers in the home, and replicating to Dad's place, etc.

Seems that MakeMKV is the Solid tool to rip, and then Handbrake to compress.
I followed some common advice to use 1080p30 Matroska preset in Handbrake, but in my test case it only took the 1:48m movie (Deadpool) from the ripped MKV of 24.6Gb, down to 8.2Gb.

Does that sound about right?
Or have I missed a setting somewhere... based on other posts, I had sort of expected about 4Gb.

The original movie is 24fps, as is the output, so have I actually reduced the framerate at all? (as the 1080p30 implies in my mind)

If my target is 2-4Gb for most movies, should I be selecting 720p perhaps? Or something else?

Thanks for anyone willing to share their experience with this... I am sure I can't be alone, and there must be many who have ripped big chunks of their physical collections. :-)
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#2
(2019-01-05, 03:22)Andrew Bienhaus Wrote: I followed some common advice to use 1080p30 Matroska preset in Handbrake, but in my test case it only took the 1:48m movie (Deadpool) from the ripped MKV of 24.6Gb, down to 8.2Gb.
You can further adjust the preset by going to the Video tab and adjusting the Quality slider. Lower numbers = better quality.

For a DVD, 18 seems to be the sweet spot for me. I don't do it for Blurays as I want the original quality and not inclined to dust off the bluray player "when I really REALLY want the high quality" when I can get that from Kodi all the time.
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#3
So my reasoning for asking about the BluRay's... is that in many cases I have the "dual pack", so why use the DVD to rip, when I have the BluRay sitting there, I figure. ;-)

With my server replication, in some cases I am now putting them out at Dad's cottage, for enjoyment there down the road... 52" screen is the biggest, and usually 35" or less, I can handle something less than BluRay, sitting around on a rainy cottage night, but I know the sweet spot I am seeking is 2-4Gb... like many of the downloaded ones, that still claim to be 1080p.
So either those guys are really cutting the quality to claim 1080p, or I am missing something else... ;-)

or, should I seek a 720p solution, from people's experience, when my source is true 1080p?
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#4
... to further clarify, and perhaps catch someone's attention. ;-)

I see a similar length movie stored as an MKV, that is a BR 1080p rip, 2.1Gb.

has that person likely dragged the quality bar somewhere way to the left to accomplish that?
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#5
(2019-01-07, 18:12)Andrew Bienhaus Wrote: I see a similar length movie stored as an MKV, that is a BR 1080p rip, 2.1Gb.
has that person likely dragged the quality bar somewhere way to the left to accomplish that?
The size of a video file is not fixed. Depending on the video resolution, bit rate, length as well as compression, the file size can vary a lot.

Some of the more popular video rips have 720p and even 1080p have been recoded into 700MB sized MKVs. At the time, writable CDs could hold upto 700MB.
A higher quality video version would end up as 6-8 GB in file size.

And yes, you can compress a video fully to pieces, the same as you can totally 'destroy' a JPG picture. The trick is to find the best balance between them.
The higher the video bitrate, the more audio tracks, subtitles and other streams contains, the bigger the video file gets.

There is also h.265, the successor of h.264, AKA hevc. You can roughly decrease the size of a typical h.264 video by 70-75% without much quality loss. Some DVD videos have been known to be compressed upto 92%. In general, the better quality of the video source, the better chance of a good quality outcome when doing a h.264 to h.264 conversion. Animated movies are a good candidate for those.
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#6
ok, thanks... I'll just keep trying then, and will also experiment with .265 and see the result.

I know it can vary all over the place... I'm just trying to come up with a formula that I can sort of "stick to"... as I next rip 30-40 movies for family consumption.

Is there any good tool, or place inside something like handbrake, to see just how much space each Audio track is occupying as I make these tests? MakeMKV very nicely shows you all the associated tracks/subs, but doesn't include how much space it's occupying...
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#7
Try ripping small files first. You'll see what outcome you have quickly when playing with the various settings.

Audio just like video has a bitrate, but most of the time people don't bother fiddling with those. I also remove any audio tracks that I won't need and keep what I do need. For example, a video file with 7+ European audio language tracks will be stripped pretty quickly of the access baggage. Normally the video files are the bigger tracks anyway. So seeing how much space a certain track take up is kinda useless.

I use ffmpeg myself from the (Linux) command line. Once a certain set of settings apply to several videos, I do a batch run to remove anything unnecessary, and add whatever is useful.
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#8
The audio tracks question, is more about whether an additional audio track is costing me 200meg, or 1Gb... I know it should be the former, but...
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#9
If it matters (for discs without copy protection of course): 
- Using makemkv to get the mkv, I never watch the extras anyways, so I only get the biggest file with the subtitles / audiotracks I want. Result: whatever_001.mkv
- No I use ffmpeg with vaapi encoding to encode the files. For 8 bit YUV420 blurays, I encode HEVC 8 bit, via: 
Code:
ffmpeg -hwaccel vaapi -hwaccel_device /dev/dri/renderD128 -hwaccel_output_format vaapi -i whatever_001.mkv -max_muxing_queue_size 1024 -map 0 -c copy -c:v hevc_vaapi -qp 21 whatever_output.mkv

This encodes the video with a quite good HEVC quality, when I read 2 GB File, You should perhaps use 24 instead ;-) and copies the bitstream audio tracks, including all subtitel tracks.

Done. Speed for encoding is around 4x - means 4 hour movie is encoded in 1 hour.
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#10
For what it's worth... here's what I learned. Smile

At the end of the Handbrake logs, is the best place to see how much space is being taken up... I haven't found any better way. (would love to be able to analyze an MKV)
MKVTool GUI does have some inspection options, but it isn't showing me the split that I can see, yet.

The last entry in the Handbrake logs, shows the mux for each part, which includes the video separate from the audio, and the size.

In the end... FWIW, I have settled on this:
- rip to mkv with MakeMKV
- select h.265 1080p30 preset (which takes a LOT longer than 264, but if you have time...)
- ac3 5.1 for things with multi-track set to 640 bitrate. (it's default for 5.1)
- ac3 stereo for any other tracks you want to keep
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Seeking friendly advice on encoding DVDs & BluRays for Kodi playback via HDMI & HD00