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Easiest way to make a "play all" button?

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dax702
Easiest way to make a "play all" button?
on Nov 10, 2006 at 12:44:11 am

I plan to encode one, two hour avi in my NLE, and bring it into Encore on one timeline. I then will insert my chapter markers where they need to go.

Question:
What is the easiest way to make a Play All button that will play each chapter in order from beginning to end and only at the end will it go back to the main menu? (I'm migrating over from Ulead DVD Workshop and it had this issue about going back to the main menu if someone interrupted the play all function (i.e. pressed the next button on their remote). So I'm trying to avoid that now with Encore...


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Jeff Bellune
Re: Easiest way to make a "play all" button?
on Nov 10, 2006 at 2:56:14 am

Bring your .avi into Encore so that you can take advantage of Encore's automatic transcoding. Encore will maximize the bit rate (and therefore the quality) for the video based on the total disc content. You'd have to work hard in your NLE to get a better transcode.

Add chapter markers as you have planned. Don't give them individual end actions. Instead, give the whole timeline an end action by linking it to the menu you want the audience to see when the timeline is finished playing.

Add a button (or link an existing button) on a menu that links to the timeline. All chapters will play seamlessly in sequence and then the program will return to your chosen menu (the target of the timeline's end action link).

-Jeff

The Focal Easy Guide to Adobe Encore DVD 2.0


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dax702
Re: Easiest way to make a "play all" button?
on Nov 10, 2006 at 3:03:08 am

"You'd have to work hard in your NLE to get a better transcode"
That's not necessarily true. I can use a bitrate calculator to achieve the same thing. The nice thing about Encore is that it tells you how much space the menus and stuff take up so you can take that into account for the bitrate calculator.

Anyways, ok, so you're saying that in a timeline, the default end action for each chapter is to go to the next chapter? Hence, I just ignore all the chapters and set the end action for the timeline. Is that correct?


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Jeff Bellune
Re: Easiest way to make a "play all" button?
on Nov 10, 2006 at 3:34:14 am

[dax702] ""You'd have to work hard in your NLE to get a better transcode"
That's not necessarily true. I can use a bitrate calculator to achieve the same thing. The nice thing about Encore is that it tells you how much space the menus and stuff take up so you can take that into account for the bitrate calculator."


Compare these 2 workflows:

Workflow #1:
1. Export an .avi from your NLE.
2. Import it into Encore. Make a timeline and add chapters.
3. Plan and make your menus.
4. Change some menus by adding background video.
5. Add 2 more menus that you overlooked the first time.
6. Build the DVD.

Workflow #2:
1. Finish editing in your NLE, but don't export just yet.
2. Plan your menus and estimate how much space they'll take up: graphic file size, video content, audio content.
3. Armed with your estimate, obtain a bit rate calculator and calculate the bit rate for your video.
4. Export transcoded video from your NLE.
5. Import it into Encore. Make a timeline and add chapters. Oops - a lot of the chapters can't go exactly where you want them because they can only go on an existing I-frame. When Encore transcodes an .avi file, it creates a new I-frame at each chapter marker. Exactly where you want them, down to the frame.
6. Make your menus.
7. Change some menus by adding background video. Oops - gotta go back to the bit rate calculator and re-figure the menu space.
8. Return to your NLE and re-transcode the entire program all over again. The whole 2 hours.
9. Add 2 more menus that you overlooked the first time.
10. Repeat step 8 after re-figuring.
11. Finally - build the DVD.

I don't know about you, but workflow #2 is what I consider hard work, even if Encore's automatic transcoding didn't exist. :-) With automatic transcoding available, workflow #2 represents a ridiculous amount of work.

However, I will add one caveat about automatic transcoding. If you are working with 2 hours of program content on a DVD-5, then automatic transcoding might be able to be bested by manual transcoding. Here's how. You pick low-motion, low-detail scenes and give them a low bitrate. Pick higher-motion, higher-detail scenes and give them the higher bit rate they need. Export each type of scene out as separate transcoded files. Stitch them together in a single Encore timeline to get your finished program. Theoretically, the high-motion, high-detail scenes will come out looking better than if Encore had transcoded the whole program automatically.

[dax702] "so you're saying that in a timeline, the default end action for each chapter is to go to the next chapter? Hence, I just ignore all the chapters and set the end action for the timeline. Is that correct?"

Yes.

-Jeff

The Focal Easy Guide to Adobe Encore DVD 2.0


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dax702
Re: Easiest way to make a "play all" button?
on Nov 10, 2006 at 4:33:32 am

I see what you're saying. Well I just tested my first burned DVD with Encore. Perfect! No flaws, no issues whatsoever. I transcoded the AVI in Encore as opposed to Vegas and it worked just fine when I popped it into the DVD player. Quality is simply superb! I actually made a preset to match what the final length of the DVD will be (a little over 2 hours), transcoded it at 4790mbps, 2 pass I think it was and it looks just great, couldn't be happier.

I was a little worried before I did the disc build as I went into the folders to find the files it transcoded, specifically the ac3. I played that file, and it played back a total mess, skipping around, and it was only 2 mins, as opposed to 20 mins. So I'm not sure what that ac3 file was all about but the final product worked perfectly.

The folder is SourcesTranscodestest.avi where I found the supposed transcoded ac3 file. Has anyone else tried to play these?


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dax702
Re: Easiest way to make a "play all" button?
on Mar 2, 2007 at 3:45:48 am

Ok, I'm taking your advice. I encoded my movie, it's 2 hrs and 2 mins and encoded AVI came out to 27GB. I do have a question about the automatic transcode setting though. Will the automatic transcode setting produce Dolby Digital AC-3 audio? Also, does Encore let you change the settings for the AC-3 Encoder like I can in Vegas? Specifically turn off the preprocessing stuff that affects the volume...


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Joe Bowden
Re: Easiest way to make a "play all" button?
on Mar 2, 2007 at 9:54:23 pm

If your audio preferences are set to Dolby Digital, then yes, Automatic will transcode your audio to AC3.

Encore only offers bitrate control over AC3 files.


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dax702
Re: Easiest way to make a "play all" button?
on Mar 2, 2007 at 9:58:33 pm

Oh ok, good to know; I found that preference and it is set to Dolby Digital.
Ah, that's a shame they don't give you full AC-3 encoder controls like Vegas does. The problem with AC-3 files for people who aren't making epic movies where DRC is used, the resulting volume of the AC-3 is significantly lower unless you're able to turn off certain settings.. I'll just have to see how it comes out or import MPEG-2 files and AC-3 files into Encore like I used to do with Ulead DVD Workshop..


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