Author Topic: Converting Blu-rays to MKV  (Read 28576 times)

March 01, 2009, 11:03:02 PM
Read 28576 times

jayallan

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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! :)










WDTV LIVE with current official FW > HDMI > DVDO > Sony CRT Projector 150" 16/9 screen.  Toslink audio to Yamaha DTS receiver. No Network set up yet.

March 21, 2009, 04:15:28 AM
Reply #1

nograde1

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

March 21, 2009, 12:06:21 PM
Reply #2

jayallan

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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.   
WDTV LIVE with current official FW > HDMI > DVDO > Sony CRT Projector 150" 16/9 screen.  Toslink audio to Yamaha DTS receiver. No Network set up yet.

March 27, 2009, 09:46:31 AM
Reply #3

georgeorwell

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

March 27, 2009, 12:53:38 PM
Reply #4

jayallan

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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
« Last Edit: April 27, 2009, 06:16:05 PM by jayallan »
WDTV LIVE with current official FW > HDMI > DVDO > Sony CRT Projector 150" 16/9 screen.  Toslink audio to Yamaha DTS receiver. No Network set up yet.

April 01, 2009, 03:13:34 PM
Reply #5

SputnikNYC

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Thanks Jay ...... awesome tutorial!!! ;)

April 02, 2009, 08:41:07 AM
Reply #6

Miramax

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If it has to be plain and simple -> MakeMKV www.makemkv.com

Cya

April 08, 2009, 03:52:35 PM
Reply #7

nogames

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If it has to be plain and simple -> MakeMKV www.makemkv.com

Cya

This one is easy, however makemkv just "wraps" the video in a mkv container. It will often still have insane bitrates of 20-25 Mbps, which WDTV won't play. Even 15 Mbps often fails.

So no-go for most blu-ray movies

April 23, 2009, 11:36:53 AM
Reply #8

Oldman

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If it has to be plain and simple -> MakeMKV www.makemkv.com

Cya

This one is easy, however makemkv just "wraps" the video in a mkv container. It will often still have insane bitrates of 20-25 Mbps, which WDTV won't play. Even 15 Mbps often fails.

So no-go for most blu-ray movies

That's interesting since I just used MakeMKV to rip the Blu-Ray Baraka last night and played it just fine on the WDTV.  Media Info reports it as encoded in VC-1 at 29.7Mbps and the rear jacket of the movie says up to a maximum of 39Mbps.  File size was 22GB. 

Storage efficiency is the main concern here as the tradeoff is size versus speed.  If you have loads of storage space just use MakeMKV and AnyDVD HD and each movie will take 30-45mins to rip but will take up 12-25GB if not more. 

Three easy steps listed here:

http://www.makemkv.com/onlinehelp/

April 26, 2009, 06:27:48 PM
Reply #9

matt88

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how long would this take on a p4 3GHZ 2GB Ram or is it too slow?

April 26, 2009, 09:30:03 PM
Reply #10

jayallan

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how long would this take on a p4 3GHZ 2GB Ram or is it too slow?

You really need a dual or quad core to get up to speed.   You can always try a 15 minute clip and see how long it takes.

WDTV LIVE with current official FW > HDMI > DVDO > Sony CRT Projector 150" 16/9 screen.  Toslink audio to Yamaha DTS receiver. No Network set up yet.

April 26, 2009, 11:19:05 PM
Reply #11

matt88

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im tossing up weather to buy a blu ray for my current comp or not

April 27, 2009, 03:32:51 AM
Reply #12

MaxxPower

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If it has to be plain and simple -> MakeMKV www.makemkv.com

Cya

This one is easy, however makemkv just "wraps" the video in a mkv container. It will often still have insane bitrates of 20-25 Mbps, which WDTV won't play. Even 15 Mbps often fails.

So no-go for most blu-ray movies

That's interesting since I just used MakeMKV to rip the Blu-Ray Baraka last night and played it just fine on the WDTV.  Media Info reports it as encoded in VC-1 at 29.7Mbps and the rear jacket of the movie says up to a maximum of 39Mbps.  File size was 22GB. 

Storage efficiency is the main concern here as the tradeoff is size versus speed.  If you have loads of storage space just use MakeMKV and AnyDVD HD and each movie will take 30-45mins to rip but will take up 12-25GB if not more. 

Three easy steps listed here:

http://www.makemkv.com/onlinehelp/
I haven't had a problem with playing direct BD streams either, it plays them whether I use a .ts or .mkv container. Even with DTS audio they play flawlessly.

April 27, 2009, 01:00:02 PM
Reply #13

Monteplus3

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Can you tell me why when I select "stand alone blue ray" as an encoder setting as opposed to "x264: *scratchpad*" I get two work streams for the video and it takes about twice as long?  When I select X264 scratchpad it still takes about 18 hours to convert, but is still far quicker and simpler than the stand alone blue ray option.  I finally had to abort this encoder setting and started all over again with the x264 scratchpad option.  Am I sacrificing quality in any way by using the x264 scratchpad encoder setting....what's the difference?  I've set both to 4500 bitrate.  Thanks.

April 27, 2009, 02:47:53 PM
Reply #14

jayallan

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The scratchpad is used to on the fly modify existing profiles.   What you have is an existing mod in the program's memory.  It sounds like your scratchpad is doing only one pass which is not recommended.  Two pass will give you SIGNIFICANT increase in quality for the same size file.   It also takes 6-8 times as long.  If you are happy with the 1 pass quality then go for it.  We all have different tastes and different equipment.   I recommend you create a new single pass profile and save it if that is the case as your scratchpad with be lost the next time you make changes to any profile during a conversion.

WDTV LIVE with current official FW > HDMI > DVDO > Sony CRT Projector 150" 16/9 screen.  Toslink audio to Yamaha DTS receiver. No Network set up yet.