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Making Divx From Popcorn3


torgotom

Question

The presets in Popcorn 3 produce goofy results that don't seem to bear any relation to what the codec setting claims.

 

Home Theater creates a playable DivX but with miserable pixelation; no home theater owner would ever watch such crud.

 

High Definition creates a superb image but any file longer than an hour ends abruptly sometime between 70 and 80 minutes, with audio dropouts throughout.

 

So I went into advanced settings, to try to find a tweak. What the menu says and the file it creates are often polar opposites. For instance, the setting that is supposed to create the largest file with highest quality but minimal compression, and process the fastest, actually produces a highly compressed file (.5 gig from 2.4 gigs) and takes all day.

 

I'm looking for fellow users suggestions on what setting to try in advanced that will deliver a great image and sound. File size doesn't matter - big is a-ok. Processing time isn't too important.

 

Running tests daily; currently trying Home Theater with the cryptic setting "produce high quality file". Shouldn't that be a default setting??

 

PS: yes, I've tested 3 macs and 1 tv - identical viewing results on all. It isn'tt a problem with my Phillips player.

 

INFO: Mac Mini core 2 duo 1.83 - 3 gigs ram - capturing through capty USBInstantDVD to MPEG-2 files

 

Process: USB Instant DVD hooked up to dvr or camcorder or vcr; captured as high quality MPEG-2 file. At this point file is complete and excellent looking but seems proprietary and doesn't play well with other editing and burning apps, and the Capty app supplied with device is an atrocity. If MPEG-2 files burned straight to disc, it hangs up after 1 hour. Burn to disc, files are incomplete. So, using Popcorn 3, export as DivX. See above for oddball results.

 

UPDATED: Maybe DivX just sucks. Popcorn 3 won't get past 1% completed if I try to "make high quality file". QT Pro does better, but the resulting file STILL is flawed, no sound and frozen solid at the 60 minute mark, Geez, are DivX files limited to 60 minutes??!!

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It's been awhile since I used Popcorn to convert an MPEG 2 video to DivX and so my recollection may be with Popcorn 2 rather than Popcorn 3. As I recall the presets in the custom encoder were odd with reference to speed, quality and file size. I also needed to change the resolution to 640x480 for my 720x480 MPEG 2 videos or else I get a picture where everyone looked too fat. The source for my MPEG 2 videos is a standalone Pioneer DVD recorder.

 

I don't recall any pixelation problem with the standard setting.

 

I also have a USBInstantDVD for Mac but haven't used it for a few years. What settings are you using for the MPEG encoding? I oftentimes experienced dropped frames or other problems. I finally figured out that my capture box was getting too hot and so I increased the space for air to circulate beneath it. That seemed to improve the reliability somewhat as long as I stayed under 5.5 mbps, chose VBR encoding and kept the audio at 224.

 

I suggest doing your experiments using a five-minute clip that includes a fair amount of action.

 

You also might go to the user forums at Divx.com. There may be some good advice there. I have the licensed Divx converter application that uses a newer version of the Divx codec than does Popcorn, but I haven't used it to make any comparison. There is a 15-day free trial for their Divx Converter at the Divx site.

 

 

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It's been awhile since I used Popcorn to convert an MPEG 2 video to DivX and so my recollection may be with Popcorn 2 rather than Popcorn 3. As I recall the presets in the custom encoder were odd with reference to speed, quality and file size. I also needed to change the resolution to 640x480 for my 720x480 MPEG 2 videos or else I get a picture where everyone looked too fat. The source for my MPEG 2 videos is a standalone Pioneer DVD recorder.

 

I don't recall any pixelation problem with the standard setting.

 

I also have a USBInstantDVD for Mac but haven't used it for a few years. What settings are you using for the MPEG encoding?

 

I'm kind of an mpeg newbie, so leave it at the default, highest quality. Suggestions??

 

 

I oftentimes experienced dropped frames or other problems. I finally figured out that my capture box was getting too hot and so I increased the space for air to circulate beneath it. That seemed to improve the reliability somewhat as long as I stayed under 5.5 mbps, chose VBR encoding and kept the audio at 224.

 

I will try those settings; I definitely noticed the heat issue. I had dropped frames before i got my new core 2 duo. now it seems to capture astonishingly well.

 

I suggest doing your experiments using a five-minute clip that includes a fair amount of action.

 

Yes, excellent suggestion, but one of my issues is the tendency for the first hour to be perfect, then an abrupt end or skipping; can't tell you how many I checked the first 40 minutes of, threw away the original capture, and only then found problems at the 60 minute plus mark...

 

You also might go to the user forums at Divx.com. There may be some good advice there. I have the licensed Divx converter application that uses a newer version of the Divx codec than does Popcorn, but I haven't used it to make any comparison. There is a 15-day free trial for their Divx Converter at the Divx site.

Oh yeah, i will look into that!! MANY thnaks!

 

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You also might go to the user forums at Divx.com. There may be some good advice there. I have the licensed Divx converter application that uses a newer version of the Divx codec than does Popcorn, but I haven't used it to make any comparison. There is a 15-day free trial for their Divx Converter at the Divx site.

 

The current version of the DivX codecs work tremendously better. They are faster and render the files with a significantly improved quality.

I tried to mess aroud with Popcorn to make it accept the new codecs instead of the built-in ones but so far I haven't figured out how to do it.

I really wish the built-in one could be updated (or even better: have PopCorn use the codecs in /Library/QuickTime if they are installed and newer).

 

 

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