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Poor Dvd Quality


Jprohaska

Question

Hey all,

 

I have seen this a couple of times on this board (as well as on the iDVD forum) but no clear answer.

I am trying to use video from my Sony SR7 to make a DVD. Sadly, both iDVD and Toast compress it down to about 1/10th of the quality.

Some quick notes are,

 

- I am trying to put two videos on, totally about 8 minutes in length

- together they equal about 6 gigs

- they end up getting compressed to about 500 megs

- I used Final Cup Express 4 to capture/edit

- the two movie files are movs exported using the Quicktime Movie option in FCE

- the dimensions are 1920 x 1080 NTSC

- when I go to burn in Toast, I have tried both "Automatic" (on 'Best' quality) and "Custom" (where I raised the bit rates to 9 Mbps)

- I have not tried 'Half-PEL' yet though but I have trouble thinking it will make a huge difference

- I am working on a iMac 2 Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo (2GB Ram)

 

Bottom line is, I am having trouble fingering out why I just bought Toast 9.

 

What is the use of having a AVCHD camera if it does not improve the quality of the video over regular DV?

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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You raise an interesting question. If one is going to watch their videos in standard definition why get a HD camera? Hopefully you are planning ahead for when you get the rest of your playback system to watch those videos in HD rather than having to reduce them to SD.

 

In the meanwhile you are having to resort to making SD video DVDs. Turning up the bit rate and turning on Half-Pel will get you the best result. Half-Pel does increase quality. The file size will continue to be small but that is what SD MPEG 2 format is supposed to do. At the highest bit rate you should be able to fit an hour of video to a DVD with PCM audio. iDVD uses only PCM audio but Toast's default is to use AC-3 Dolby Digital which is compressed. So Toast will create a smaller file size unless you choose PCM audio. This becomes very important when you create video DVDs longer than about 90 minutes. iDVD has to drop the video bit rate farther than Toast because in iDVD the audio takes up much more space.

 

I'm not sure why you are creating SD video DVDs from your video. If it is just for your viewing I'd get an AppleTV to watch those videos in higher quality and use Toast along with an ElGato Turbo.264 to convert the AVCHD to H.264.

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I'm not sure why you are creating SD video DVDs from your video. If it is just for your viewing I'd get an AppleTV to watch those videos in higher quality and use Toast along with an ElGato Turbo.264 to convert the AVCHD to H.264.

 

 

Thanks for your reply. I originally bought the HD camera because we just had a baby a few months ago and I was told that using an HD camera would produce better quality videos than regular DV cameras. I figured that the HD burner/player market would drop faster than it is (hopefully it will now moreso because Blu-ray won the war).

 

So, if I get AppleTV, I can put the mov videos on it and watch them in HD (or close to it)? I have a full HD tv.

 

And, my other question is, is there no reason for me to have Toast 9 if I don't have an HD burner (I also have Toast 8)?

 

Thanks again for your help.

 

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Thanks for your reply. I originally bought the HD camera because we just had a baby a few months ago and I was told that using an HD camera would produce better quality videos than regular DV cameras. I figured that the HD burner/player market would drop faster than it is (hopefully it will now moreso because Blu-ray won the war).

You made the right choice even if you aren't seeing the benefit at this minute.

 

So, if I get AppleTV, I can put the mov videos on it and watch them in HD (or close to it)? I have a full HD tv.

Yes. The ability to record and play your own HD videos is something that couldn't be done two years ago so a lot is new. Apple's recent update to AppleTV makes that a product I can recommend. There also is the LaCie LaCinema which takes a different approach but may provide for higher quality video and less time spent encoding. If you don't plan to watch movies downloaded from iTunes on your HDTV the LaCie approach may be better for you. I don't have it so you'll need to learn more from LaCie and others who have bought it. I have an earlier LaCie Silverscreen that is similar but doesn't have HD playback.

 

And, my other question is, is there no reason for me to have Toast 9 if I don't have an HD burner (I also have Toast 8).

You're asking the wrong person this question. I always like to have the best version of Toast and Toast 9 is more capable than 8. It also directly supports your camcorder via its Media Browser which Toast 8 does not do. In my opinion Toast 9 is more suited to your needs than is 8. Another factor is that Roxio will be continuing development work on Toast 9 for awhile but it is far less likely there will be further Toast 8 updates to keep up with Apple's frequent OS and QuickTime updates.

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