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Old 21st April 2002, 19:35   #1  |  Link
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DVD2SVCD Quick Guide and FAQ

DVD2SVCD Quick Guide and FAQ

This is a quick guide, reference and FAQ. Most of this information can be found in the living Q + A.

DVD2SVCD is a front end for many great programs put together with the correct options already selected for you or easily changeable that in the end all you do is hit GO. A few hours later (anywhere from 3 to 40, movie length, options and computer dependant) you have images ready to burn to make your SVCD.

What other pages should I read?

Always be sure you have the latest version of DVD2SVCD.
You can find it at the DVD2SVCD homepage.

The best pages for either a more complete guide or more advanced info are here:

DVD2SVCD guide at Doom9.org

Also be sure you have read this. It is a great thread about the information the forum needs to help anyone with a problem.

Mandatory Read! Welcome / How to make a good post

How do I tell if my DVD player can play SVCD's?

Check the DVD player list at www.vcdhelp.com
and see the list we have compiled here at the end of the Guide.

What software other then the DVD2SVCD bundle do I need?

You have three choices of encoders, two of which are commercial and the last is shareware. CCE 2.50 and CCE 2.62 are the only two versions of CCE that are officially supported. You may also use TMPgenc 2.50 or above.

If you use CCE 2.62 you must check off safe mode on the encoder tab.
With CCE 2.5 you may use either method, but safe mode is much slower.

What hardware do I need?

You will need a computer with a DVD drive, a CDRW drive, 256mbís or more of RAM, a large hard drive (10+ GB's free is suggested) and a CPU that is at least a P3 or later for CCE. See the CCE page for more specific info.

Although DVD2SVCD will work with 128mbís, 256mbís or more is highly recommended and if you wish to use your computer at all while encoding at least 384mbís is recommended.

How do I get started?

After you have installed DVD2SVCD make sure the correct path is stated for CCE or TMPG on the encoder tab.

On the Misc tab this is where you will set the default directory or the directory structure to be used. It a good idea to get into the habbit of doing this first. Very Important: There is a bug in one of the programs used in DVD2SVCD that limits what you can have as a directory name. Do not use anything, but letters. No numbers or special characters. This will cause one of the programs to fail and you will need to start over again from the beginning.

You can also set the process priority for all the programs DVD2SVCD uses. This is more effective in the Winnt based OS's such as 2000 or XP. Setting the priority to idle usually will not effect the encode and tends to help when you use your computer for other light duty tasks such as surfing the net. Games and other CPU intensive programs are not recomended while you are encoding.

Here is also where you get to set the level of the way DVD2SVCD interfaces with you. Until you have a reasonable understanding of what is going on leave this at normal. The settings that are hidden are done so for your protection.

This is also where you set up what you will be using this program for. If you are using it to convert DVD's set it to DVD2SVCD. If you are using it to convert AVI's then set it to AVI2SVCD and if you are going to be converting PVA streams then select PVA2SVCD.
This FAQ deals mostly with DVD2SVCD.

On the ripping tab you have the ability to choose either not to enable ripping or you have two methods to rip. There is either the Internal method of ripping which will give you the ability to rip chapters or as an alternate choice Vstrip can be used, but you cannot rip chapters with this.
External rippers are not recomended and are known to ocassionally cause issues. If you have problems with a video you ripped with something other then the two supplied rippers always redo the video with the supplied rippers before asking for help in the forums.

If you have ripped the files to you hard drive using the rip only option in DVD2SVCD make sure to uncheck ripping before you start again from the hard drive.

On the conversion tab you will select the IFO off the DVD (Usually in Video_TS directory). Many times there is more then one. In this case the largest IFO is usually the correct one.

On DVDís with multiple aspect ratios there will be two very close in size. One will be for the 4:3 encode and the other for the 16:9 encode. The only sure way is to pick one, rip the DVD to the Hard Drive with the rip only option, test it with a Software DVD player like WinDVD or PowerDVD 4.0, if you got the correct one load that IFO off the Hard Drive into CCE and continue and if you got the wrong one erase those files and pick the other IFO.
Once the correct IFO is loaded you can now make your selections as to what you want to do with the DVD.

Now you need to decide how you want the video to be encoded. There are three choices. DVD2SVCD reads the IFO and tries to make a choice, but sometimes this choice is not correct or what you want.

If you use the setting anamorphic(No borders, encode as 16:9) your DVD player must support this tag for SVCD's. Signs your DVD player does not support them include having the video stretched into 4:3 mode or having violent shaking in the video even on a 16:9 TV. If this happens you should not use this setting. It seems that more players do not support the tag then do. Even the old standby Apex units do not appear to support this tag.

If this happens and you have a widescreen TV you should continue to use 4:3(No borders, encode as 4:3) for you encodes that are to be dedicated. Otherwise only choose this if the video is fullscreen 4:3. You should also use this setting if the video is "letterbox". Generally these are onlder pre-anamorphic videos where the black bars are actually part of the video.

If you use a more standard 4:3 TV use 16:9 (borders added, encode as 4:3) for your 16:9 anamorphic videos. This is the most commonly used setting today.

Alternately you can read the excellent explanation by Nick:

It all depends on what sort of TV you are going to be watching on.

Let us first take the example of a 4:3 TV with an anamorphic 16:9 DVD.

The DVD picture is 720 pixels wide and 576(PAL)(480 NTSC) deep. Something on the DVD tells your player it is in 16:9 format and when you set up your DVD player you will have told it in the setup menu that you have a 4:3 TV. Hence what your DVD player does is create a 4:3 output to send to the TV by squashing the image into the middle 432 lines and adds 72 lines of black top and bottom. These lines are not on the disc, they are added by your DVD player to create an output suitable for a 4:3 TV.

However, if you set up your DVD player telling it you have a widescreen TV it outputs the picture 16:9 exactly as it is on the disc.

Now let's move onto the conversion.

When we convert DVD to SVCD we have three options with the new build (Ignore the "Resize to " option in the Frameserver tab, we're talking conversion tab here).

Option 1: 16:9, borders added, encode as 4:3. This is exactly like the 16:9 tab in previous builds. What this does is make a disc which gives a 4:3 output by squashing the picture into the middle third and actually putting black bars on the disc, so the actual movie is contained in the middle 432 lines of the 576 available, the rest is black. When played on a 4:3 TV the result looks the same as when your DVD player added the bars when you played the original DVD. However, on a 16:9 widescreen TV the picture has to be stretched both horizontally and vertically to fill the screen. Pretty much every widescreen TV has picture zoom modes to do this but lots of stretching = poor picture quality.

Option 2: 4:3, no borders added, encode as 4:3. This is exactly like 4:3 in previous builds. This encodes a 4:3 disc with the full 576 line vertical resolution. Because the output from this disc in 4:3 the DVD player does not know to add black lines top and bottom to output to your 4:3 TV so the egghead effect ensues. Some TV's have picture modes to add black bars but the vast majority don't. However, played on a widescreen TV, you only have to stretch horizontally to fill the screen as it is already at full vertical resolution. Less stretching = better picture quality so if you will be watching on a widescreen TV this option is a winner.

Option 3: Anamorphic, no borders added, encoded as 16:9. This is the new option on 1.0.8b1. What this does is encode at full vertical resolution but put a marker on the disc just like the original DVD to tell your player that it is 16:9. Therefore if you set up your DVD player saying you have a widescreen TV, the DVD player outputs at full vertical resolution but if you set it for a 4:3 TV the player does the squashing up and adding of black bars. So you get the best of both worlds - perfect playback on either TV type.

The only problem is that it appears most standalone DVD players are incompatible with this new option and picture distortion results. Either which way, there is no need to resort to uninstalling this build and reinstalling an earlier version. If the 16:9 anamorphic option doesn't work for you simply don't use it! The other two options are exactly as per previous builds.
Ripping your choice of chapter(s).
On the conversion tab the length of the video will show. Click on this and as long as you have Internal Routines selected as your ripping choice on the ripping tab and have Activate DVD ripping checked off a window will popup allowing you to select and deselect individual chapters for ripping. This is a great way to do a test encode or if the last chapter is just the credits get rid of them.

On the bitrate tab you can adjust the size of CDR you plan to burn the images to. The default Values are 740 or 800. Use 740 for 74 minute CDR discs and 800 for 80 Minute CDR discs.
Why so large a size? I thought I could only burn 650 or 700mbís respectively.
Video does not have the overhead of file data and because of this you are able to burn much more on a CDR disc.

Also on the bitrate tab you can adjust the MIN, MAX AVG and AVG bitrates for the SVCD. Until you get the hang of creating SVCDís leave these values at default. You will have time enough to experiment later.
If you get an error that the bitrate is above 2756 this means that the set MAX of the video plus the set audio bitrate combined is beyond the SVCD spec of 2756 and may not play correctly in your player. If you know your player can handle this continue and in the future you can uncheck the warn when bitrate is above 2756 on the bottom of the bitrate tab. If you are unsure you should say no and reduce the MAX bitrate until the error goes away or you can reduce your audio bitrate. It is wise if your audio bitrate is 224 or below that you reduce the MAX bitrate for the video and not the audio as some players have problems when the video bitrate alone is too high.

On the DVD2AVI tab you have different options for how DVD2AVI will handle NTSC videos (does not apply to PAL). You have the options of letting DVD2AVI decide to use Forced Film or IVTC on itís own, Forcing DVD2AVI to use Forced Film, Forcing DVD2AVI to request IVTC or use none of these and leave the video rate as it is during the encode.
For most operations leaving this at the default of Automatic is the wisest choice.

What DVD2AVI does is to look at the video and decide whether this is film based or video based. If this is film based then DVD2AVI adjusts the video to 23.976 fps (Frames Per Second) by eliminating special tags in the Mpeg video. If DVD2AVI decides that this is a video based source then it passes the information to use IVTC onto DVD2SVCD and then a much more complicated and time consuming conversion takes place. It is usually best to convert the video to the lower frame rate, because then there are fewer frames using up precious bits and space. After the video in encoded a program called Pulldown adds those special flags back into the video stream recreating the illusion that the video is 29.976fps or NTSC TV standard. The nice thing is that these flags take up almost no space.

If you happen to notice that your encode speed is going slower then normal check the DVD2SVCD log and look for one of these two lines.
Forced Film Activated!
Force Film Not Activated IVTC will be performed instead!

If you see the second line then IVTC is being performed and this can slow you down by as much as 40% in CCE or TMPG.
Oh no Mr. Bill!

Last edited by markrb; 7th May 2002 at 03:29.
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Old 21st April 2002, 19:36   #2  |  Link
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On the Audio tab there are a couple of adjustments that can be made.
The default audio bitrate is 128. Most people prefer a Minimum setting of 192.
Also for most people there is no reason to Downsample the Audio. Unless you are using a stand alone SVCD player or one of the very few DVD players that cannot handle 48 audio you are just as well unchecking it.

On the "Subtitles" tab you can select up to 4 different subtitle streams to be encoded with your SVCD. Just set up the languages you want in the pulldowns and choose the type of subtitles then. You have to know that using subtitles will not work on every standalone player and up to now there's no software player available that will play SVCD/CVD subtitles either.

If you want to have selectable subtitles like those on a DVD you can choose between SVCD and CVD (Chinese Video Disk) style subtitles - you have to find out on your own which format your standalone supports.

But you can always use permanent subtitles with your conversions because they are encoded into the movie and so there's no problem with a standalone or a software player.

You can use the "Preview" feature in the "Conversion" tab to find a good vertical position for your subtitles. Horizontally they will be centered automatically.

When using subtitles there will be a window for the subtitle selection showing up after you have started the conversion with the "Go!" button. Use the "Next" button to skip through the available subtitles until you see a preview of all your selected subtitles - then confirm your selection and the appropriate subtitles will be ripped to your harddisk as single BMP files to be muxed into the MPG file later.

If you will not get any subtitles but you have chosen to have some then perhaps your player does not support it or it supports the other selectable format. Further on it can happen that the extracted subtitle BMP files are all black - this happens if you couldn't see a preview of the selected subtitle during the subtitle verification process.

Also you can find some links to some image files with different subtitles that are known to work properly in the Q&A - so you might want to try them too. In addition you can also try a different imager (vcdxbuild, vcdimager or I-Author) software as it seems that some standalones also depend on that to properly display the selectable subtitles.

On the BBmpeg tab you can choose if you want discs after the first one to have a few seconds of video from the previous one. This helps to avoid CDís ending in the middle of sentences. You can choose 0 to 8 seconds of overlap.

For the most part you do not want to change any of the other settings on this tab. Leave Movie offset at the default of 2 seconds.

On the Frame Server tab this is where you choose your resize method. There are three to choose from and each has itís own strengths and weaknesses.
Simple Resize- Fast
Bicubic Resize-Slowest, but generally the most used in this group
Bilinear Resize-Many people say you should use this if making an SVCD

You can also choose if and when to edit the AVS (Avisynth) file. Leave this until much later. It is fairly advanced.
If you really want to learn about how to write an AVS file read the sources.
Avisynth Forum at Doom9.org
Avisynth homepage.

On the Cdimage tab this is where you decide if you want images to be made, if you want SVCD chapters, what type of chapters, if you want a title picture, if you want a change cd picture.

If you choose VCDXBuild to create the images you will be given the option to have chapters. You can choose DVD chapters which will try and keep the same chapters the DVD had or you can choose to have a chapter every XX minutes.

For DVD chapters there are 3 options: PBC Use Selections which creates a playlist using selections (don't worry about the term.. you don't really need to know what it means), PBC Use Playlist and no PBC. Use selections is the default as this not only enables you to go forward and backward using your remote, but also select a chapter via a numerical button (pressing 5 would start playing chapter 5 for instance). Some players don't like Selections and will do strange things (sometimes you can no longer using chapter forward/backward if you press another key, or chapter selection will interfere with audio / subtitle stream selection) so you can try PBC use Playlist instead. If your player does not support PBC at all select no PBC. This will also disable the Title picture and ChangeCD picture.

If you click on the More Info (IMDB) you are able to enter the movie name and DVD2SVCD will search the IMDB database for info on that movie and give you the opportunity to use the movies cover photo as a title picture.

If you choose donít make images the process will stop after the mpg files have been created. You may use something like Neroís SVCD template to burn these to CDR discs, but if you do you will not have chapters.

Burning your images after DVD2SVCD has finished.
When DVD2SVCD has finished and you selected to make images you will have several Cue/Bin files. You will have one Bin and one Cue for each CDR to be burned. The Cue file will contain the chapter points and some other info while the bin contains the video itself.
There are several methods and pieces of software to use.
There is the FoolProof method used by the famous DDogg.
You can use CDRWIN (commercial), Nero (commercial) or later with burn images or VCDEasy using CDRAO (free).
Some people use Fireburner, but it is not officially recommended. Data corruption is common.

By far the most recommended ways to burn are Foolproof, VCDEasy and CDRWIN in that order.

Here is the guide for CDRWIN from Doom9.org.

To view your created SVCD disks you will need a Software DVD player such as WinDVD or PowerDVD 4.0 and note there is no known Software SVCD player that will use selectable subtitles.

To test your completed cue/bin files before burning them onto a CDR disc you can use DAEMON Tools to mount the files much like you do in DDogg's Foolproof way to burn a SVCD, but instead of burning them you open your Software DVD player and point it to the new virtual drive. Chapters will work, but selectable subtitles will not. You also may not be able to see a title picture if you used one.

To view the created Mpg files on your hard drive it is best to stick with the Software DVD player again. Windows Media Player is not recommended. Sync and other issues are commomplace. It is good for a quick check to make sure the video and audio are there, but not for extended viewing.

Recover: This option on the misc tab is mostly meant for recovering from crashes. It does have other good uses as well.
If you had to stop the proccess for any reason you should simply be able to select the d2s file and continue.
If you need to make any changes realise that some changes are not passed on and others may confuse DVD2SVCD making the results unpredictable. If you change encoders, change target directories or modify the number of cd's you must start over. There can be other settings that cause problems as well.
Also make sure you do any changes after the d2s file is loaded. If not everything will be reset to what it was like before.

Notes on video encoding speed:
SmartDeinterlace (slows encoding speed by about 40%)
BlendFields slows (encoding speed by about 10%)
SeparateFields/SelectEvery (PAL) (slows encoding speed by about 15%)
VerticalReduceBy2 (PAL) (slows encoding speed by about 20%)
Telecide (PAL) (slows encoding speed by about 25%)
PAL 480x576 takes longer to encode than NTSC 480x480
Oh no Mr. Bill!

Last edited by markrb; 1st May 2002 at 22:00.
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Old 7th May 2002, 03:30   #3  |  Link
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DVD players that play SVCDs on CD-R Confirmed by DVD2SVCD forum members.
(S)=SVCD subtitles, (C)=CVD subtitles, (SC)=Both SVCD & CVD subtitles

Amoisonic 8506F
Asustek V-300(C)
Apex AD-500w(C), AD-600a(SC), AD-660(SC), AD-703(SC), AD-1500(C), AD-3201, AD-5131(S), 7701(SC)
Cat 921/922(C)
Cyberhome ADM-212(S), AD-M512, ADL-528
Daewoo S2122, DVG-3000N(S)
Dansai 852
Elta 8891(SC)
GE (Shinco clones) 1101P, 5803P(C)
Grundig a.k.a. Scan 2000 GDV-130
Lenco DVD-02(SC)
Mustek V300, V520
Monyka (aka Raite 713) 8200
Omni 3003, SL-P3200, SL-P4000
Panasonic RV31(S)
Philips DVD701, DVD725(S), DVD825AT
Philco DV-P2100
Pioneer DV-333, DV-341, DV-343, DV-344, DV-434, DV-444, DV-525, DV-C503, DV-535
Rowa 3610
Sampo DVE-611(SC)
Samsung M405
Scan 2000
Scott 838(C)
Skywoth 1050P(C)
SM Electronics 2100
Thomson DTH-5000
Tokai 715S(C)
Toshiba SD-210E


DVD players that play SVCDs on CD-R Unconfirmed from vcdhelp.com DVD players list

Afreey ADV-2360, LD-2060, PDV-2000 Portable
Aiwa XD-DW1, XD-DW5, XD-DW7
Apex AD-3201, AD-500a, AD-500b, AD-500DE, AD-700, AD-800a
Daewoo DHC-5800K, DHC-DHC2200K
Hitachi DV-P250, DV-P250U, DV-P415U, DV-P505E, DV-P505U, DV-P705U
Memorex MVD-2025, MVD-2026, MVD-2027
Omni 2002, SL-P2000KD, SLP3000, SLP3002, SLP3102, 2100KC
Onkyo DR-S 2.0, DV-S555
Panasonic CV51, P10,
Philips DVD703, DVD570M, DVD612, DVD622, DVD701, DVD702, DVD710, DVD711, DVD712, DVD718, DVD720, DVD722, DVD725
Pioneer DV-05, DV-3300, DV-340, DV-440, DV-515, DV-530, DV-545, DV-555, DV-646A, DV-C302D, DV-C36, DV-C603, NS-DV55, PDV-LC10
Raite AVPhile 713, 715, RDR-202H
RCA 5240P, RC5223P, RC5240P, RC5400P Portable
Sampo DVE 560+, DVE 620, DVE-320, DVE-360, DVE-660
Samsung DVD 611, DVD 615, DVD 711, DVD 809, DVD 811, DVD 812, DVD M204, DVD M205, DVD M205, DVD-M105, DVD-M301, DVD-P401, DWM-360, Max945D, SV-DVD1E
Sanyo 6040, DVD-6070, DWM-360, DWM-370, DWM-470
Shinco DVD 2100, DVD 380, DVD 858PS, DVD 860, DVD 868, DVD-180, DVD-960
Sony DVP-FX1, DVP-NS400D/S, DVP-NS900V
Teac DV-2150, DV-3000, DV-4000
Thomson DTH-4000, DTH-4200, DTH-4500
Toshiba SD-1300, SD1209, SD6200
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