Technical query to experts as I'm curious here  

  1. Posts : 11,247
    Windows / Linux : Arch Linux

    Technical query to experts as I'm curious here

    Hi folks
    Messing around with DVD's (standard - not Blu Rays) and trying various ripping programs why is a "Bog standard" DVD file so large -- often around 8GB for an approx 2 Hour movie.

    Using various "rippers" I can get quality both audio and video where you'd almost need a lupe to see the difference between the original DVD and the ripped version. I love good photography and still use professional grade DSLR's so I know about Image quality and file sizes too.

    Typically using say Handbrake as the standard for ripping a basic commercial PAL DVD (720 X 576) with HQ audio passthru and subtitles for a 2 hour video the file compresses to around 1.4GB instead of nearly 8GB.

    My ripped version is in mkv format H-264 -- the extra processing time to get a slightly smaller file with H-265 isn't worth it in the case of "bog standard" DVD's -- Blu Ray's though might be another issue.

    Here's my Handbrake settings which give excellent results and don't take too long even on an old laptop. Size of file for 46 min episode - approx 650 MB so 4 episodes on the disk - 2.6 GB instead of 8 GB. I could probably compress further but 2.6GB for pretty well identical quality as the original seems an excellent saving !!!. I'm using large TV's so getting the maximum quality on DVD's which are low res by todays standards is more important than if watching on a small TV / laptop screen or mobile phone.

    Technical query to experts as I'm curious here-screenshot_20210316_100010.png

    OK I'm missing menus but that can't consume that much extra space and I've no problems with chapters etc. (Handbrake can convert commercial DVD's - you need the "decrypter dll" on windows though unless you copy DVD to its iso format on HDD with something like makemkv and then rip the iso with Handbrake).

    So why are DVD's so wasteful of potential space.

    I'd imagine a similar scenario with Blu Rays but I don't have any of those to test though.

    So all you Engineers out there -- any reasons for this.

    Last edited by jimbo45; 16 Mar 2021 at 05:15. Reason: Added Handbrake parameters and screen shot
      My Computer

  2. Posts : 7,128
    Windows 10 Pro Insider

    It all has to do with the file being compressed or not. When you used Handbrake the file was compressed in the mkv H-264 format. The original DVD is not compressed.
      My Computers

  3. Posts : 30,337
    10 Home x64 (22H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)

    jimbo45 said:
    So why are DVD's so wasteful of potential space....

    Short answer: because they still use an older encoding standard, MPEG-2

    MPEG-2 is not as efficient as newer standards such as H.264/AVC and H.265/HEVC, backwards compatibility with existing hardware and software means it is still widely used, for example in over-the-air digital television broadcasting and in the DVD-Video standard.
    MPEG-2 - Wikipedia
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  4. Posts : 1,202
    Windows 10

    jimbo45 said:
    Hi folks
    So why are DVD's so wasteful of potential space.
    H.262 codec was 1995 technology. H.265 is 2013 technology.

    That's like asking why don't all the countries kill off all the FM radio stations right now because FM radio is analog and it is wasteful to use the spectrum frequency that way when they can squeeze 10 digital radio stations using the same amount of spectrum space as a single FM radio station occupied.

    They don't kill FM radio stations because the general public still have billions of analog radios (in their cars, in their radio alarms, in their HiFi stereos...) --- and all those legacy analog radio devices would be unusable if they killed off FM radio.

    There are millions of DVD players around from 1996 and they would be unusable if they change the codec.
      My Computer


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