General WDTV Groups > Audio and Video Conversion

Converting Blu-rays to MKV

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jayallan:
I mostly use my WDTV to watch my Bluray disks that I have converted to MKVs for playback on my WDTV.
MKV is the current best format for storing HD video.  It offers the best ratio for highest quality at the best (smallest) file size.
With a 2 hour movie at 1080p an MKV can be about 8GB and still look exceptional.   At 720p the MKV can be around 4 GB!
This is the preferred way to store your Bluray's on a media server. 
MKV is a container format, which means it can contain many different file types including DTS, Dolby Digital, and subtitles tracks.



THIS IS A BASIC GUIDE TO CONVERTING BLURAY TO MKV.  (For more comprehensive guides search the internet for specific uses of each program.)

I use two programs to create my MKVs.   AnyDVD by SlySoft http://www.slysoft.com/en/anydvdhd.html and MeGUI from here http://sourceforge.net/projects/megui

AnyDVD costs around $120 but is the only program that can decode studio BluRay disks.   They have amazing customer support, and update the program almost weekly. 
MeGUI is a free program and comes with a host of sub tools.  Be sure to read their install instructions and set it up completely.

Once you have the programs installed, you will need to RIP your BluRay to a hard drive.   This can take upwards of 15-25 Gigabytes !!!
Open AnyDVD and rip the BluRay to a folder on your PC.   

Once you have the files on your hard drive you will need to create an AVISynth script in MeGUI.  Go to tools and select AVISynth script creator. This will tell the program what video file to work with. 

Go to your BD RIP and in the STREAM folder you should find that largest file.  This will be the main movie.  Select that as your source. 

Once you have selected your source file a video window will pop up and you will have some resizing options.  Use clever anamorphic encoding to maintain the correct aspect ratio and trim the excess black boarders. 

Once you have set any resizing save your AVIsynth script.

Now you need to set the video encoding profile.  In the Encoder Settings pull down box find an x264 setting that suits your needs.  I recommend x264 Standalone BluRay.    You can configure your own based on what you want for quality vs file size.

General guidelines for encoding bitrates:
For typical XviD/DivX AVI's I would suggest you start with 600-700 kbps for bitrate
For DVD Rips I would suggest you start with 800-1000 kbps for bitrate
For Blue-Ray/HD-DVD/HD @ 720p I would suggest you start with 2000 - 3000 kbps
For Blue-Ray/HD-DVD/HD @ 1080i I would suggest you start with 3000 - 4000 kbps
For Blue-Ray/HD-DVD/HD @ 1080p I would suggest you start with 4000 - 5000 kbps


Once you have selected an encoder setting hit the enqueue button.

Now select the same video file as your Audio input.  Select Aften AC-3 as your encoder setting.  I do not have a DTS encoder. 

set the extension as AC3 and select an output file name.  Hit Enqueue.

Now click the queue tab.   Hit Start.

This will take 8 to 10 hours for a quad core machine.   

Once you have the two files (one audio and one video) in the folder you selected you will need to combine the AV files into one MKV.

Under tools select Muxer > MKV Muxer.

The video input should be the new file you spent 8 hours making, and the video will be the AC3 file you created.  Select a destination file name and hit queue.   Now click the queue tab again.   Hit Start.

That should get you there.  Again this is a basic guide, and for specific settings and such go to the individual programs sites for guidance. 

Have fun! :)










nograde1:
Do you recommend an external or internal BR drive?  How much are they now?

jayallan:
I have an internal LG.  I bought the combo drive that also does HD DVD because those disks are only about $4-5 on eBay now.   And they are the same quality as the BluRays.  Paid $120 for it.   

georgeorwell:
Great job on the step by step process.  Exactly what a lot of us are looking for!   

jayallan:
Thank you GeorgeOrwell!

Now I need to do I guide for HD-DVD rips to MKV.  I have been buying them up as they are so cheap now.   
I will have to figure that out.

DONE!  Have a look here: http://wdtvforum.com/main/index.php?topic=384.0

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