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Old 31st August 2005, 06:15   #1  |  Link
writersblock29
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Impressions of Shrinkto5

I downloaded and tested this new software, (availible at: http://www.shrinkto5.com/) not expecting much since 1-click DVD backup software is becoming more and more mainstream. Here's what I wound up with.

Movie tested: Star Wars Episode 1, Region 1, Disk 1, Full disk copy.

Decrypted with DVDFab Decrypter.

Installation was fast and easy, since the download is a self-contained installer. Uninstalling left no harsh effects on my test system. The test system is a self-built unit meant for video processing, including the following:

AMD Anthlon 64 on an MSI Socket 939 motherboard which is running 2GB of Micron memory (PC3200) in a dual-channel mode. All programs are in a 32-bit environment (due to lack of support for drivers and programs with Windows 64).

The CPU ran at 94-100% all through the 25 minute, 59 second event. The output size was left at default in the program (4.37GB), but the resulting files clocked in at 4.21GB -- bringing back memories of InstantCopy 7. The average encoding speed was 144 FPS, and completed without any input on my part. The interface itself is clean and easy to understand, requiring only four clicks to complete a full-disk project.

The quality is mixed, however. Granted, there's a lot of reduction necessary to whittle the original 7.78GB file to 4.37 -- and any transcoder currently availible is going to show the strain from that. So to that end, I can forgive the degree of pixelation I saw in the final product since even very good software like DVD Shrink or Nero Recode would show roughly the same thing (to be fair about it, I ran a full-disk comparison with Nero Recode). The issue I ran into that made me frown the most was the handling of Multi-angle material -- which this disk has. There was a high degree of stuttering within these scenes, with flickering images of alternate languages here and there. Since this was absent in both the original rip and the Recode project, I can only conclude that Shrinkto5 has issues with this sort of material.

While quality is certainly subjective, I found the Recode files much more pleasing to the eye, while not necessarilly being as sharp. Much, MUCH, less pixelation with Recode.

Not that I mean to discourage the developers, should they read this post. On the contrary: I'd like to see how this software ends up with a little more development and testing. I love it when a free software rivals high-priced "professional" tools! Reversely, however, I conclude that Shrinkto5 is not yet a threat to other transcoders like DVD Shrink or Nero Recode. It certainly won't be embraced by users of high-end encoders like CCE (nor does it have the many functions availible in DVD Rebuilder... which, incidentally, appears to handle Multi-angle sources just fine).

This is just me testing one (count 'em: ONE) movie. The price is right, so feel free to test it yourself. Curriousity's good for you.
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Old 31st August 2005, 09:55   #2  |  Link
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I found also exactly the same obversations as you did writersblock29. I tried it on an old favorite, The American President. PAL R4 6.72gb, with all bar English removed in Audio & Subs. Took 9min 13sec on my AMD X2 4400 to reduce it down to 4.19gb.

End result showed some major blocking in the Universal intro with random flickering of coloured blocks. The actual movie would be okay to watch on a small screen TV but not on anything larger than a 26" set. On the PC screen the pic was very fuzzy and lots of added noise. Back to ReBuilder, that took me 51min and excellent results
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Old 31st August 2005, 19:01   #3  |  Link
mrbass
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thanks for the reports. I'll wait a till the engine improves before trying it myself. If it does get decent it'll be a boon for linux/mac users.
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Old 1st September 2005, 01:31   #4  |  Link
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I was just about to install Shrinkto5 but thought, eh, I better take a look on Doom9 to see if anyone else has tried it. I'm glad I did, because I have enough "junk" installed on this system of mine (certainly not that St5 is junk, but I just don't need it).

I only use DVD Shrink to check the options of the movie I want and then export it uncompressed. From there I use DVD-RB Pro. I still find DVD Shrink to be easier in customizing a movie to my own liking. I don't use it at all for transcoding, even for small percentages (under 10%). I use CCE for my encoding needs, using custom matrices and sometimes undot() and deen() when applicable.

I hope St5 improves at least to the point of DVD Shrink since the latter is no longer hosted (though it's easily obtainable via p2p). St5 has a great interface and much potential. It's especially good for those (like many of my friends) who need something very easy to use with relatively good quality output.

Last edited by Aquilonious; 1st September 2005 at 01:33.
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Old 1st September 2005, 11:34   #5  |  Link
Cyberace
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What happened to ReJig (C++ open source DVD9 to DVD5 transcoder) by the way? ...anyway maybe ShrinkTo5's developers can integrate ReJig's source code into its own (if there is any features/functions or other stuff in there that they can use )?, it's great that there now is at least one active GPL'ed project/program that does DVD9 to DVD5 ripping simple and quick, (to bad DVDShrink isn't open sourced too )
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Old 4th September 2005, 09:50   #6  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyberace
to bad DVDShrink isn't open sourced too
I just read the news that DVDShrink is no more, ...rumour is that the author got employed by Nero to work on Recode and he took his code with him so DVDShrink will probebely never be open sourced
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Old 4th September 2005, 12:09   #7  |  Link
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What happened to ReJig (C++ open source DVD9 to DVD5 transcoder) by the way?
life, the universe, everything ?
it will be updated eventually.

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I just read the news that DVDShrink is no more, ...rumour is that the author got employed by Nero to work on Recode
that news is so old its got cobwebs on it. if you you will find posts from a loooong time ago about development being stopped and recode etc.
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Old 12th September 2005, 14:34   #8  |  Link
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I would be more curious how a 10 or 15% reduction would look in Shrinkto5.
There is no transcoder that can make a 7.5gb to dvd5 reduction look acceptable.
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Old 12th September 2005, 15:04   #9  |  Link
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Originally Posted by Richk50
I would be more curious how a 10 or 15% reduction would look in Shrinkto5.
There is no transcoder that can make a 7.5gb to dvd5 reduction look acceptable.

Have you tried DVD Shrink? It might surprise you.
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Old 12th September 2005, 16:08   #10  |  Link
Cyberace
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latest CloneDVD (CloneDVD2) also give great results, though it's not free
It also helps if you strip out menus, special-features and foreign audio tracks
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Old 13th September 2005, 02:53   #11  |  Link
writersblock29
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@Richk50

At 10-15%, pretty much all transcoders will do a somewhat reasonable job on a good source -- it'd be easy to give Shrinkto5 a pat on the back it doesn't deserve. It's best, in my opinion, to push it well beyond where you'd normally put it in order to see if it offers any sort of improvement over what's currently availible. That's why I chose to test it against Nero Recode 2. I wasn't expecting crystal-clarity; in fact, I assumed either test would look like a mess. They did! But the Recode version of Star Wars Eposide 1 was far easier on the eye than Shrinkto5. Therefore, Shrinkto5 offers no improvement over what else is out there. At least, that's what I came up with.
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Old 13th September 2005, 08:01   #12  |  Link
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richk50
I would be more curious how a 10 or 15% reduction would look in Shrinkto5.
There is no transcoder that can make a 7.5gb to dvd5 reduction look acceptable.
Of course there is, it is dvdshrink. It's all about bitrate and not percentage. And YES, I've tested my rips on a friend's beamer, his screen is 2,40 meters wide and there were no artifacts.
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Old 13th September 2005, 12:29   #13  |  Link
nwg
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Originally Posted by Chetwood
Of course there is, it is dvdshrink. It's all about bitrate and not percentage. And YES, I've tested my rips on a friend's beamer, his screen is 2,40 meters wide and there were no artifacts.

I don't have quite 2.4m but I do have 2m wide. So far, all my Shrink backups look great and that includes my Return of the King backup (theatrical version). That looks better than my DVD Rebuilder version and that was at 55% compression in Shrink.
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Old 13th September 2005, 13:23   #14  |  Link
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That looks better than my DVD Rebuilder version and that was at 55% compression in Shrink.
Something must definately have gone wrong there
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Old 13th September 2005, 21:15   #15  |  Link
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Originally Posted by influenza
Something must definately have gone wrong there
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder or some ******. IMO, he must be blind

Last edited by mrbass; 13th September 2005 at 22:03.
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Old 13th September 2005, 21:19   #16  |  Link
nwg
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Originally Posted by OvERaCiD23
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder or some *******. IMO, he must be blind
Charming

The DVD Rebuilder version was a mess and had sharpness problems. It actually was hard to look at for long periods. The Shrink version had better colour and contrast.

Last edited by mrbass; 13th September 2005 at 22:02.
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Old 13th September 2005, 22:03   #17  |  Link
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With huge macroblocks? Thanks for bitching to the moderators too.
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Old 13th September 2005, 23:15   #18  |  Link
nwg
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Originally Posted by OvERaCiD23
With huge macroblocks? Thanks for bitching to the moderators too.
No macroblocks and I didn't btw. I would never do that. I would look at the swearing instead.

Last edited by nwg; 13th September 2005 at 23:21.
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Old 13th September 2005, 23:44   #19  |  Link
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It depends on the source material.

If the source is encoded really good, then there is enough "room" for a transcoder to reduce the file size without a visible quality degrading and even no macro-blocking. Then it looks better than a new encoding with CCE.

But for many movies this is'nt the case and DVDRebuilder wins.

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Old 13th September 2005, 23:51   #20  |  Link
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Originally Posted by goonix
It depends on the source material.

If the source is encoded really good, then there is enough "room" for a transcoder to reduce the file size without a visible quality degrading and even no macro-blocking. Then it looks better than a new encoding with CCE.

But for many movies this is'nt the case and DVDRebuilder wins.

goonix
Exactly. It is also helped by using deep analysis and AEC settings in Shrink.

Using DVD Rebuilder doesn't mean it is automatically better everytime. IT depends on the bitrate of the original. I also have plenty of Shrink and DVD-RB discs that look the same.
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