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I'm getting poor quality DVDs from i

1937 Views 7 Replies Latest reply: Nov 16, 2012 9:35 AM by qfieldboden RSS
tombarklr Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Jul 30, 2012 8:31 PM

I too am getting poor quality DVDs from iDVD.  What's the fix?

MacBook, Mac OS X (10.6.4), poor quality DVDs, video noise
  • Bengt Wärleby Level 6 Level 6 (18,920 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 30, 2012 9:39 PM (in response to tombarklr)

    Hi

     

    There are several layer to this question.

     

    A. Most important and basic one is that

     

    DVD - is as standard only - interlaced SD-Video (as on old CRT-TVs) and can not be any better whatever program used. iDVD, DVD Studio Pro or Roxio Toast™ (etc)

     

    And - Your Mac screen about 5 - 20 times higher quality.

     

    So quality on DVD must be judged by playing it on a standard DVD-Player and TV.

     

    B. The Video-editing program used are IMPORTANT - as iMovie'08 or 09 or 11 are NOT tools of choice if a DVD is to be the result as non of them can deliver interlaced SD-Video over to iDVD but discard every second line in the picture ( no way around this known to me ! ).

     

    So by using iMovie HD6 or FinalCut any version one get a significant quality improvement as they can deliver.

     

    C. Then the material used also matters e.g.

    • Analog video from VHS tapes recorded in Standard Mode gives about 50% resolution of original interlaced SD-Video. LP or EP mode even worse to much worse.

    • Using Video codecs that iMovie/iDVD can not use directly but need of transcoding - will also give a dramatic quality loss

    • non matching frame rates e.g. 24p or 25i(PAL) to 29.97i (NTSC) or other way around will give a very bad and jumpy result.

     

    Or You can dive into my long list on this if You like.

     

    DVD quality

     

    1. iDVD 08, 09 & 11 has three levels of qualities. (version 7.0.1, 7,0.4 & 7.1.1) and iDVD 6 has the two last ones

     

    • Professional Quality

    (movies + menus up to 120 min.) - BEST (but not always for short movies e.g. up to 45 minutes in total)

     

    • Best Performances

    (movies + menus  less than 60 min.) - High quality on final DVD (Can be best for short movies)

     

    • High Quality (in iDVD08 or 09) / Best Quality (in iDVD6)

    (movies + menus up to 120 min.) - slightly lower quality than above

     

    Menu can take 15 minutes or even more - I use a very simple one with no audio or animation like ”Brushed Metal” in old Themes.

     

    About double on DL DVDs.

     

    2. Video from

    • FCE/P - Export out as full quality QuickTime.mov (not self-containing, no conversion)

    • iMovie x-6 - Don't use ”Share/Export to iDVD” = destructive even to movie project and especially so

    when the movie includes photos and the Ken Burns effect NOT is used. Instead just drop or import the iMovie movie project icon (with a Star on it) into iDVD theme window.

    • iMovie’08 or 09 or 11 are not meant to go to iDVD. Go via Media Browser or rather use iMovie HD 6 from start.

     

    3. I use Roxio Toast™ to make an as slow burn as possibly e.g. x4 or x1 (in iDVD’08 or 09  this can also be set)

    This can also be done with Apple’s Disk Utilities application when burning from a DiskImage.

     

    4. There has to be about or more than 25Gb free space on internal (start-up) hard disk. iDVD can't

    use an external one as scratch disk (if it is not start-up disc). For SD-Video - if HD-material is used I guess that 4 to 5 times more would do.

     

    5. I use Verbatim ( also recommended by many - Taiyo Yuden DVDs - I can’t get hold of it to test )

     

    6. I use DVD-R (no +R or +/-RW) - DVD-R play’s on more and older DVD-Players

     

    7. Keep NTSC to NTSC - or - PAL to PAL when going from iMovie to iDVD

    (I use JES_Deinterlacer to keep frame per sec. same from editing to the Video-DVD result.)

     

    8. Don’t burn more than three DVDs at a time - but let the laser cool off for a while before next batch.

     

    iDVD quality also depends on.

     

    • DVD is a standard in it self. It is Standard Definition Quality = Same as on old CRT-TV sets and can not

    deliver anything better that this.

     

    HD-DVD was a short-lived standard and it was only a few Toshiba DVD-players that could playback.

    These DVDs could be made in DVD-Studio Pro. But they don’t playback on any other standard DVD-Player.

     

    Blu-Ray / BD can be coded onto DVDs but limited in time to - about 20-30 minutes and then need

    _ Roxio Toast™ 10 Pro incl. BD-component

    _ BD disks and burner if full length movies are to be stored

    _ BD-Player or PlayStation3 - to be able to playback

    The BD-encoded DVDs can be play-backed IF Mac also have Roxio DVD-player tool. Not on any standard Mac or DVD-player

    Full BD-disks needs a BD-player (in Mac) as they need blue-laser to be read. No red-laser can do this.

     

    • HOW much free space is there on Your internal (start-up) hard disk. Go for approx. 25Gb.

    less than 5Gb and Your result will most probably not play.

     

    • How it was recorded - Tripod vs Handheld Camera. A stable picture will give a much higher quality

     

    • Audio is most often more critical than picture. Bad audio and with dropouts usually results in a non-viewed movie.

     

    • Use of Video-editor. iMovie’08 or 09 or 11 are not the tools for DVD-production. They discard every second line resulting in a close to VHS-tape quality.

    iMovie 1 to HD6 and FinalCut any version delivers same quality as Camera record in = 100% to iDVD

     

    • What kind of movie project You drop into it. MPEG4 seems to be a bad choice.

    other strange formats are .avi, .wmv, .flash etc. Convert to streamingDV first

    Also audio formats matters. I use only .aiff or from miniDV tape Camera 16-bit

    strange formats often problematic are .avi, .wmv, audio from iTunes, .mp3 etc

    Convert to .aiff first and use this in movie project

     

    • What kind of standard - NTSC movie and NTSC DVD or PAL to PAL - no mix.

    (If You need to change to do a NTSC DVD from PAL material let JES_Deinterlacer_3.2.2 do the conversion)

    (Dropping a PAL movie into a NTSC iDVD project

    (US) NTSC DVDs most often are playable in EU

    (EU) PAL DVDs most often needs to be converted to play in US

    UNLESS. They are play-backed by a Mac - then You need not to care

     

    • What kind of DVDs You are using. I use Verbatim DVD-R (this brand AND no +R or +/-RW)

     

    • How You encode and burn it. Two settings prior iDVD’08 or 09

    Pro Quality (only in iDVD 08 & 09)

    Best / High Quality (not always - most often not)

    Best / High Performances (most often my choice before Pro Quality)

     

    1. go to iDVD pref. menu and select tab far right and set burn speed to x1 (less errors = plays better) - only in iDVD 08 & 09

    (x4 by some and may be even better)

    2. Project info. Select Professional Encoding - only in iDVD 08 & 09.

     

    Region codes.

    iDVD - only burn Region = 0 - meaning - DVDs are playable everywhere

     

    DVD Studio pro can set Region codes.

    1 = US

    2 = EU

     

    unclemano wrote

    What it turned out to be was the "quality" settings in iDVD. The total clip time was NOT over 2 hours or 4.7GB, yet iDVD created massive visual artifacts on the "professional quality" setting.

     

    I switched the settings to "high quality" which solved the problem. According iDVD help, "high quality" determines the best bit rate for the clips you have.

     

    I have NEVER seen iDVD do this before, especially when I was under the 2 hour and 4.7GB limits.

     

    For anyone else, there seem to be 2 places in iDVD to set quality settings, the first is under "preferences" and the second under "project info." They do NOT seem to be linked (i.e. if you change one, the other is NOT changed). take care, Mario

     

    to get this to work I

    • Secure a minimum of 25Gb free space on Start-Up (Mac OS) hard disk

    • Use Verbatim DVD-R (absolutely no +/-RW)

    • Set down burn speed to x4 - less burn errors = plays on more devices

    • No other process running in background as - ScreenSaver, EnergySaver OR TIMEMACHINE etc

    • and I'm very careful on what kind of video-codecs, audio file format and photo file formats I use

    • and I concider the iDVD Bug - never go back to video-editor to change/up-date - if so Start  a brand new iDVD project

    • Chapters set as they should - NO one at very beginning and no one in any transition or within 2 sec from it

    • Lay-out - Turn on TV-Safe area and keep everything bittons, titles etc WELL INSIDE not even touching it !

    Try to break the process up into two stages

    • Save as a DiskImage (calculating part)

    • Burn from this .img file (burning stage)

    To isolate where the problem starts.

     

    Another thing is - Playing it onto a Blu-Ray Player. My PlayStation3 can play BD-disks but not all of my home made DVDs so to get this to work I

    • Secure a minimum of 25Gb free space on Start-Up (Mac OS) hard disk

    • Use Verbatim DVD-R (absolutely no +/-RW)

    • Set down burn speed to x4 - less burn errors = plays on more devices

    • No other process running in background as - ScreenSaver, EnergySaver OR TIMEMACHINE etc

    • and I'm very careful on what kind of video-codecs, audio file format and photo file formats I use

    • and I consider the iDVD Bug - never go back to video-editor to change/up-date - if so Start  a brand new iDVD project

    • Chapters set as they should - NO one at very beginning and no one in any transition or within 2 sec from it

    • Lay-out - Turn on TV-Safe area and keep everything buttons, titles etc WELL INSIDE not even touching it !

     

    TO GET IT TO WORK SLIGHTLY FASTER

    • Minimum of 25Gb free space on Start-Up hard disk

    • No other programs running in BackGround e.g. Energy-Saver

    • Don’t let HD spin down or be turned off (in Energy-Save)

    • Move hard disks that are not to be used to Trash - To be disconnected/turned off

    • Goto Spotlight and set the rest of them under Integrity (not to be scanned)

    • Set screen-saver to a folder without any photo - then make an active corner (up right for me) and set

    pointer to this - turns on screen saver - to show that it has nothing to show

    • No File Vault on - Important

    • NO - TimeMachine - during iMovie/iDVD work either ! IMPORTANT

    • Lot's of icons on DeaskTop/Finder also slows down the Mac noticeably

    • Start a new User-Account and log into this and iMovie get's faster too - if a project is in a hurry

    • And let Mac run on Mains - not just on battery

    Yours Bengt W

  • Bengt Wärleby Level 6 Level 6 (18,920 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 31, 2012 9:03 AM (in response to tombarklr)

    I read the information and understand about every other word even though it is written in my native language (English).

     

    Well it can depend on my POOOOR English as I'm not anything like Native.

     

    My English teacher pointed out one major problem - I can not differ British from American English at all (as You see) and ontop of this imbibed with Swedish grammar. It's not easy at all.

     

    but again first I must learn your language as I have never done any of this before.

     

    My serious doubt's that Swedish will help in any way - but welcome to try it out.

     

    Yours Bengt W

  • qfieldboden Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 16, 2012 5:30 AM (in response to Bengt Wärleby)

    Bengt

     

    This was probably the most helpful post I've seen on a support forum, the detail and clarity are excellent. Are you still around to answer a few follow-up questions I have as I'm trying to optimise my DVD burning setup.

     

    Thanks,

     

    Quentin.

  • Bengt Wärleby Level 6 Level 6 (18,920 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 16, 2012 6:11 AM (in response to qfieldboden)

    Thank You for Your nice words.


    Yes I'm here - now and then.


    BUT PLEASE - Start a new Topic of Your own as this

    • will be easier to answer

    • other will see it and help with the answer

    • other in same situation will benefit from reading

    • and most probably more


    Yours Bengt W - see You !

  • qfieldboden Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 16, 2012 9:35 AM (in response to Bengt Wärleby)

    Hi Bengt

     

    I have followed your advice and started a posting specific to my situation, hopefully I'll get some advice.

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4513089

     

    Best regards - Quentin.

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