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February 28, 2008

How to: Rip DVD movies for use in iPod Touch/iPhone

Maybe you've seen other related article with this one, but I have tried this method myself.

I am able to rip a 1.5 hours of DVD movie and cramp it into a high quality video, with only 600+ MB. I tried other softwares, but I can't get 600 MB to get the same quality, so I'm going to share with you how you could do that.

First, you're going to download the DVD ripping software. It's called Handbrake. Follow the link here to get to the download page. The software supports Windows and Mac operating systems, making it great for any user.

Next, you're gonna need to download AnyDVD. AnyDVD removes all the encryption of the DVD, if there is any. However, AnyDVD is not free, hence it can only be used for 21 days. Follow the link here to download AnyDVD.

After you have installed both softwares, make sure you restarted your computer so that AnyDVD can work when you inserted a DVD in.

If you want to convert into compatible iPhone/iPod Touch setting, click on "Show Presets" on the top right corner of the Handbrake GUI. There will be a selection of settings you can use. For me, I have personally tried 3 settings that is:
  • iPhone / iPod Touch
  • iPod High-Rez
  • iPod Low-Rez
The output file (for the same movie) size for the 3 settings are as follows:
  • iPhone / iPod Touch -> 600 MB
  • iPod High-Rez -> 1.2 GB
  • iPod Low-Rez -> 500 MB
Quality is not compromised for any setting, even for the Low-Rez setting. I'm using it now, and the quality is quite good. I can say, it will play nicely when TV-Out using the iPod Touch.

Now you want to change the settings so that you don't have to wait needlessly for the encoding to end. I am assuming you've chosen "iPhone / iPod Touch" as your preset setting.

In Picture Settings tab, set your Deinterlace to Original (Fast). Deinterlace will remove those stupid lines of your output video to make it more smooth and nice. Next, uncheck Chapter Markers, because you don't need them. Leave the rest of the settings in Picture Settings as it is.

Next, go to Video Settings tab, and make sure All checkboxes are unchecked. Especially the 2-Pass Encoding. You don't want to add an additional hour worth of encoding for nothing though. If you're comfortable with such jargons, then you can do whatever you want here.

Next, go to Audio & Subtitles tab. Change the Audio bitrate to 128 kbps. Anything higher is not recommended and it will just contribute to your output file size. 128 kbps is fairly quite good quality, but if you're willing to compromise filesize, then change it to192 kbps. You can get superb quality at that. Change the Sample rate to 44100 kHz. You can leave the rest to Automatic. If you want Subtitles, just select the required subtitle in the drop down box.

Now you're ready to encode the video. Hit the Encode Video and wait for the whole process to finish. In my humble computer specs, it takes me up to 1.5 hours to encode a 1.5 hour movie, but it still depends on your system. Maybe you computer specs are better than mine you can encode it a little bit faster?

After all is done, you can now Sync your video using iTunes into your iPhone/iPod Touch. Now you can enjoy DVD quality videos in your iPhone/iPod Touch.
Good luck!

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Yusry is a technology freak, he plays a lot with his iPod Touch since day 1. He is also into programming and gets excited trying out new softwares. He is also a member of a local Singaporean band named Dermapthera. You can read his other blog at