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Re: Compression Question

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Re: Compression Question
on Mar 28, 2005 at 5:40:36 pm

"-ssion" doesn't really rhyme with "-stion". ;-)

As for the compression: For a single layer DVD, 3 hours is really pushing it. Not the compatibility, but the quality of the video. Given the price of a good quality DVD-R blank, cost can hardly be an argument against dividing the content over two discs.

Important factors for compatibility are:
  • The maximum bit rate. For improved playback compatibility it is generally recommended to use a maximum bit rate of no more than 7Mb/s, together with Dolby Digital (AC3) audio.
  • Up to date burner firmware. Newer firmware will contain improved "burning strategies" for specific media.
  • Good quality DVD-R media. Maxell and Verbatim are usually safe choices. A "brand name" isn't a guarantee for quality: E.g. Memorex DVD-Rs can be pretty bad.
  • Low burn speed. At lower speeds, the burner will write a more clearly defined pattern of marks and spaces. There are not many burner and media combinations that produce better than mediocre results at speeds faster than 4x.
  • Adhesive labels. Sticking a label on a DVD will cause the error rate to shoot up. Normally those errors are still correctable, but it makes the player's job harder and the chance of playback issues higher.

A special problem can be the "slimline" type DVD-ROM drives used in laptop computers. Some of them don't play writable DVDs (DVD±R) at all, others can persuaded to play them if the maximum bit rate is kept below 5Mb/s (which is rather low as maximum).

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