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Old September 16th, 2003, 02:46 AM   #1
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dvd (or vob) to .avi

hi, i've been lurking around here for a while but haven't had much to contribute. anyway, i've got a somewhat serious problem and i was hoping you guys could help.

recently i had a hard drive disaster that resulted in me basically losing everything i've produced in the last 6 months (i still have the raw footage on master tapes, but that's not a huge consolation).

luckily, i do have tons of finished stuff burned onto dvd-r (in vob format for viewing on consumer dvd players).

so here's what i'm trying to figure out: what's the best way of converting these vob files to .avi? or even mpeg-2, i guess (though .avi would give me greater editing flexibility). admittedly i'm not an expert on dvd technology, so (hopefully) there's probably an easy way to do this that i just don't know about. any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old September 16th, 2003, 06:20 AM   #2
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Two suggestions: DVD2AVI will convert the VOBs to AVI but you may have to further process the resulting files - I had to deinterlace to get decent results where any unusual amount of motion was involved. The other route I've used involves having a DVD deck in to my VCR and out to my Sony VX2000. It will convert the analogue signal to digital on the fly, allowing me to capture via Premiere. I could probably go direct from the deck to the camera, but I'm set up this way for other reasons and it works. This approach won't work with copy protected material but that's not what you're working with. Incidentally, I've found that changing the vob extension to mpg allows WMP to play the file, if you have the proper codec, which you will if you have something like PowerDVD on the computer.

David Hurdon
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Old September 16th, 2003, 08:41 AM   #3
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Hi Joey,

Go to doom9.net and get the Gordian Knot system package. This will give you all the tools you need to process your video however you see fit. The best part is, it'f free! It's made up of several freeware programs that will allow you to turn your .VOB in avi. Since you already have the video on DVD, i'm guessing it's not encrypted, which saves you a step. Copy your DVD contents to your harddrive, then use DVD2AVI on the VOB files. This will demux the audio and video, and leave you with a wav or ac3 files (whichever the sound was encoded as) and a .d2v file. To process the d2v file, you can use VFAPIConv.exe (downloaded separately) to convert the file to a "pseudo" avi that Virtualdub can open, or you can use Gordian knot to open the dv2 file, save the file as an AVI Synth file (.avs) and open the .avs directly with Virtualdub. Then you process the file with Virtualdub and turn it into anything you want--DivX, DV, Indeo, whatever. This sounds like a lot of work, but Doom9.net has guides on how to use everything in the package, and you actually spend alot more time waiting for your computer to process the video than you actually spend doing anything. If you have questions, e-mail me at mark@jeffersons.org. I have lots of experience doing this, so let me know. Hope this helps.

Cheers,
Mark
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Old September 16th, 2003, 09:47 AM   #4
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the fastest and easiest solution IMO would be to copy the vobs to your NEW ( ;) ) HDD

now open Vegas and import the VOB to your timeline. Vegas will read it as a MPG2 compliant file with NO AUDIO

Download a program called BeSweet (google it, you cant miss it)
and a GUI to run it

also you will need these associated plugins (available on the besweet site)

Using VOBInput.dll v1.3 by DVD2SVCD (http://www.dvd2svcd.org)
Using azid.dll v1.8 (b825) by Midas (midas@egon.gyaloglo.hu).
Using hip.dll v1.13 by Myers Carpenter <myers@users.sf.net>
Using Shibatch.dll v0.2 by Naoki Shibata & DSPguru (shibatch.sourceforge.net).

strip the audio from the video. using besweet.
You will be left with a raw VOB/s which includes the audio and video as one (duh) but by using besweet you are only extracting the AUDIO (whether it be 5.1 or whatever)
output is assignable to stereo, mono multi mono etc etc even ac3)

these files have the SAME duration as your video, so once ripped off the VOB, import them to vegas and drag them to up as a new Audio track... you can sync the files by zooming in (frame accurate)

Voila instant DVD on your timeline

You can render to AVI (which will take ages) or you can render as a new mpg2. I would suggest a higher bitrate than the original so as not ot incur much reprocessing artifacts.
Video is whats gonna juice out your system.... so it depends if you want an AVI (as mark mentioned) or an mpg output

Im sure VCD help might actually have a downloadable app which allows you to recombine the 2 files, but i havent been tehre for a while.. theyve got SO MUCH there it isnt funny

now render and pray you dont get another HDD failure...

I had a WD 120gb drive die on me JUST before i was gonna render a huge wedding project... needless o say i lost everything and had to recapture and re-edit the whole thing. Not ot mention 30 gb worth of audio as well as Business logos etc etc...

its not good when Hardware dies...

good luck with the salvage job..
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Old September 16th, 2003, 03:03 PM   #5
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Hey does Vegas let you re-capture footage from your tapes? Final Cut Pro does this so you should be able to lose a drive but recover (as long as your project file was not on that drive).
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Old September 17th, 2003, 12:15 PM   #6
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what do u mean recapture tape?
are you referring to file names being associated within the project??
if so yes...

and if the file isnt there when it tries to lauch the project, you can find a replacement and it too will be seen on the timeline with the same characteristics of the original...
Characteristics i mean EDIT PROPERTIES, such as effects filters etc etc

hypothetically, if you had a HDD failure and lost a file called
"CamA clip001" which is used on the timeline, you could recapture that tape, call it the same thing, and open the original project and your edit WITH would be there.
If the original file isnt available, Vegas will offer a repacement or a search facility... you can either lead it to the replacement file, or jsut save your new cpature in the same directory

backing up work with vegas is incredible IMO...
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 12:12 PM   #7
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I've been trying to use Gordian Knot to convert VOBs to a DIVx 3.11 AVI file. I've had great success with a small 6mb file but not with a larger 6gb file.

When I encode the 6mb file I slide the resolution slider all the way to the right. The resulting file is about twice as big as the original and slightly better looking than when the slider is left in a more normal range.

However, when I do this with my 6GB file the resulting file is smaller than the original: about 1.6GB and the quality is very poor.

I've also tried using VirtualDubMod, but Adobe Premiere Pro 1.5 won't import any of the files output by VirtualDubMod.

What can I do to get a larger/higher quality AVI file?
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 02:13 PM   #8
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I've had success with this simple method (which I've mentioned elsewhere on dvinfo to no response):

1) Copy the main VOB files (non-menu, just features) to your hard drive.

2) Rename the VOB files to MPG

3) Open Windows Movie Maker 2 (finally found a use for this application!)

4) Import your MPG files into WMM and place them in the timeline, in order.

5) Export as a DV avi file

In all instances I have used this method, I have had no problem getting a usuable DV file with audio, which I can then edit in Premiere, etc.

Another method I have used (although a little more labor intensive) is a combonation of DGMPGDec (which is an "upgrade" of sorts from DVD2AVI) with AVISynth and VirtualDub. I have only used this method once -- to convert a PAL DVD to NTSC -- but it definitely worked. The Windows Movie Maker method, though, is pretty straighforward and easy, and definitely worth a try.
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 02:42 PM   #9
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Thank you for responding. I've never tried renaming the extention before importing into WMM. I'll try it.

Since I sent my previous thread I have found something that has been successful though with one problem. Rather than encoding from Gordian Knot, I save an .AVS file. Then I open the .AVS file using VirtualDubMod (before, I would open the VOB file.) Then I save an .AVI file from there.

Premiere is able to open .AVI files from VirtualDubMod that were first opened as .AVS files. Make sense?

The .AVI files I save from VirtualDubMod I save as Direct Stream files, and therein lies the last problem. The .AVI files end up being huge. I'm talking about a 15 minute video being 15GB large. That would mean a two hour movie would end up being 120GB. So, I'm working on getting the file size lower. I don't know why they're so big.

Nevertheless, I'll give your method a try too. Thank you.
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 03:12 PM   #10
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VirtualDub 1.6.1 (or whatever number) has quite a few options for compression -- the default being "uncompressed." Under the Video tab, you can choose "Compression" and pick from a variety of options. (EDIT: I believe you have to download a DV codec, like the free panasonic one, in order to export as DV avi)

In the case of my PAL-to-NTSC conversion, I used VirtualDub to open an avs file, which I deinterlaced and converted to 29.97 fps, and then exported as an AVI using the HuffYUV codec. That avi was then brought into Premiere for further tweaking, then exported as a DV avi file.
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 03:49 PM   #11
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I'm still trying to figure out how to output a smaller file from VirtualDubMod. Do I have to select a compression? Direct Stream with no compression produces a very large file and Full Processing without compression an even larger file.

For example, a two hour video recorded to .AVI from an external source will be about 25GB large. But a two-hour video converted to .AVI by Vdub using Direct Stream selected will be 120GB! Why? The recorded video isn't compressed, why should Direct Stream without compression be so much larger? I don't even know what Direct Stream means, so I probably sound like an idiot.
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 04:09 PM   #12
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<<<-- Originally posted by Will Turner :

For example, a two hour video recorded to .AVI from an external source will be about 25GB large. But a two-hour video converted to .AVI by Vdub using Direct Stream selected will be 120GB! Why? The recorded video isn't compressed, why should Direct Stream without compression be so much larger? I -->>>

Well, with a two-hour avi coming in at around 25 GB, I would say that it *was* compressed, using the DV codec (which is the standard codec that miniDV uses, for example). DV compresses to about 13 GB per hour.

I am not so familiar with VirtualDubMod, and I have only just recently begun tooling around with VirtualDub 1.6, so I do not know if the options are exactly the same. But as I mentioned above, in VirtualDub 1.6, under the Video tab, you can choose "Compression" and pick from your choice of compression formats. You do this before you try to "Save as an AVI." See if the MOD version has the same option.
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 04:20 PM   #13
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All this time I thought my recorded .AVIs were not compressed. So, what Vdub is giving me is truly uncompressed video. That seems to come in around 60GB per hours. Wow.

So, now I have to decide which codec to use from those offered. Can someone recommend one?
Huffyuv
Cenepak
DivX 5.2.1
Microsoft Video 1
Microsoft MPEG-4 Video Codecs V1 and V2

There are others, but these seem like the ones I've read most about. Geesh, I sound like an idiot.

Thank you for your kindness and patience.
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 04:35 PM   #14
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I don't have the link right now, but there is a free Panasonic DV codec that, when installed on your computer, will also give you DV avi as a compression option. You should be able to find it via the Tools section of videohelp.com: http://www.videohelp.com/tools

That may be your best option if you are going to edit the video further. If you have the space, huffyuv will probably work as well (I'm not sure, but it might be more like 20 GB per hour for huffyuv, vs 13 GB per hour for DV avi, but don't quote me on that)
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Old March 2nd, 2005, 04:46 PM   #15
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Here, found it:

http://www.videohelp.com/tools?tool=Panasonic_DV_Codec

as it says, "The Panasonic VFW DV codec works perfect with Virtualdub."
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