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Toast 11 Dvd Quality Question


Manfred2k
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I'm new to Toast, iMovie, and Mac, and am having trouble burning high-quality DVD's from Toast 11.

 

Use Case: Create DVD's from HD sports video (HDV on a Canon HV20), roughly 50 minutes in length. I've been capturing video in iMovie and sharing via Media Browser. Once complete, I open in Toast 11. Previewing in Toast (or iDVD) looks fine, but after burning, the end result is poor.

 

 

The problem: Final SD DVD resolution quality is poor when played on PC's, Macs, HD TV's with BD and standard DVD players

 

Hardware and tools: MacBook Pro, 4GB Memory, 2.2 GHz Intel i7 processor, Mac OS X Lion 10.7.2, Toast 11, Toast 11 HD plugin, iMovie '11, iDVD 7.1.2

 

If I do this in a Windows 7 environment, using Adobe Premier Elements, the end result is great. This environment is not very stable, however, and frequently locks up. That is why I am pursuing the Mac/iMovie/Toast option.

 

Any thoughts and guidance regarding optimally burning HDV HD video to standard DVD's will be appreciated!

 

Thanks!

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Toast has a pretty good quality MPEG 2 encoder so I don't know why it looked bad compared to Premiere Elements. Is the Media Browser you're referring to the one in Toast? Did you add the iMovie project file from the Toast Media Browser? How did Toast describe the specs of the movie after you added it to the main Toast window? Did you have Best quality selected in Toast?

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Toast has a pretty good quality MPEG 2 encoder so I don't know why it looked bad compared to Premiere Elements. Is the Media Browser you're referring to the one in Toast? Did you add the iMovie project file from the Toast Media Browser? How did Toast describe the specs of the movie after you added it to the main Toast window? Did you have Best quality selected in Toast?

 

tsantee, thanks for responding! When I referred to Media Browser, it was the iMovie Media Browser. I clicked on iMovie >> Share >> Media Browser. I then added the iMovie project file from the Toast Media Browser. Previewing from there looks great. TOAST describes the video specs as H.264, 1920x1080, 29.97 fps, and have burned with "Best" quality and Reencoding set to both "Never" and "Automatic". Still, DVD quality is poor. It is good to know that the MPEG 2 encoder isn't the issue.

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tsantee, thanks for responding! When I referred to Media Browser, it was the iMovie Media Browser. I clicked on iMovie >> Share >> Media Browser. I then added the iMovie project file from the Toast Media Browser. Previewing from there looks great. TOAST describes the video specs as H.264, 1920x1080, 29.97 fps, and have burned with "Best" quality and Reencoding set to both "Never" and "Automatic". Still, DVD quality is poor. It is good to know that the MPEG 2 encoder isn't the issue.

It looks to me that you did everything right and that video should look really good.

 

When viewing the video on the Mac be sure to evaluate its quality at actual (or normal) size. On a HDTV it should look reasonably comparable to any most standard-definition video DVDs. Since it is only an hour in length you can go to the custom encoder settings window and set the average and maximum bit rates to higher settings. I'd choose 7 mbps as the average and 8.5 mbps as the maximum. Also turn on Half-Pel (which improves quality with action scenes). But this means you need to go through the entire re-encoding again which is really slow from a HD source. You might want to do some testing with a 5-minute (or shorter) clip of the video. You can edit a segment to include using Toast's editor. Then choose Save as Disc Image. Mount the saved disc image file (an easy way to do this is control-click on it in the Finder and choose Mount It from the Contextual Menu) and view it with DVD Player.

 

Something else to try is to Share the movie in iMovie using the AppleTV setting of 960 x whatever. This greatly reduces the degree that Toast must rescale the movie to arrive at an anamorphic 720x480 MPEG2 file.

 

Let me know if any of these alternatives make the final disc (or mounted disc image) look good. As I mentioned, do this first with a short clip so you don't have to wait forever to see how it looks.

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It looks to me that you did everything right and that video should look really good.

 

When viewing the video on the Mac be sure to evaluate its quality at actual (or normal) size. On a HDTV it should look reasonably comparable to any most standard-definition video DVDs. Since it is only an hour in length you can go to the custom encoder settings window and set the average and maximum bit rates to higher settings. I'd choose 7 mbps as the average and 8.5 mbps as the maximum. Also turn on Half-Pel (which improves quality with action scenes). But this means you need to go through the entire re-encoding again which is really slow from a HD source. You might want to do some testing with a 5-minute (or shorter) clip of the video. You can edit a segment to include using Toast's editor. Then choose Save as Disc Image. Mount the saved disc image file (an easy way to do this is control-click on it in the Finder and choose Mount It from the Contextual Menu) and view it with DVD Player.

 

Something else to try is to Share the movie in iMovie using the AppleTV setting of 960 x whatever. This greatly reduces the degree that Toast must rescale the movie to arrive at an anamorphic 720x480 MPEG2 file.

 

Let me know if any of these alternatives make the final disc (or mounted disc image) look good. As I mentioned, do this first with a short clip so you don't have to wait forever to see how it looks.

 

Bumping up the bit rates seemed to help. Not great, but a lot better!!

Thank you!

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