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HC Encoder - Quality settings

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Carlos Angeli
HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Mar 30, 2012 at 10:35:41 am

Hi,

I was advised to try HC Encoder to transcode downscaled video (from HD to SD DVD). The quality improvement is great when compared to Encore's trancoding engine.

However, I would like to know if there's a chance to make the files out of HC take more advantage of the space left in the DVD. Right now
I've got 1.2/1.5GB files and after transcoding them, I'm left with 168MB videos. Since a DVD has 4.7 GB available, I was wondering if there's a chance to make better use of that space.

I tried to use a higher value in the file length field, but using the "Make DVD compliant" button, shrinks that value down.


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Jeff Pulera
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Mar 30, 2012 at 1:23:49 pm

Hi Carlos,

I'm also using HC Encoder as part of my workflow, very pleased with it.

Please note that the DVD specifications have a maximum data rate limit for audio and video combined, so regardless of how short the video is, you can only set the quality so high, therefore you can never fill the disc with much less than an hour of video.

8.0 (8000)is about the maximum you'd want to go on the video encoding, though some say to be safe with playback compatibility to maybe stick with 7 as a max limit.

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor Computers


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Carlos Angeli
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Mar 30, 2012 at 7:04:49 pm

Hi Jeff,

thanks for the explanation. I didn't know about the data rate maximum values. The quality of HC is in fact very pleasing.

However, I see that sometimes a bit of noise may appear, specially when having titles against black backgrounds.
Have you ever experienced that, and if so, did you use any filter to solve it?

Thanks


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Jeff Pulera
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Mar 30, 2012 at 7:18:46 pm

Hi Carlos,

I forget which tab it is under, but there is a window where you can select the "encoding matrix" I believe it is called. You can try different presets. I haven't tried them all, but FOX1 worked well on a project I did. I'm at work and can't look at the moment.

Thanks

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor Computers


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eric pautsch
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Mar 30, 2012 at 8:29:42 pm

Just to clarify the ceiling is 9.8 for video. There are some cheap decoders which don't like higher bitrates for burned media......which is why Jeff suggests 8.0

If you were going to replication, you'd be able to go as close to that 9.8mb/s you'd like



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Jeff Pulera
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Mar 30, 2012 at 9:13:10 pm

Hi Eric,

I just Googled and am getting conflicting results, but what I mostly see (and have seen over the years) is that 9.8 is the max for BOTH the video and audio combined, with 8 being the recommended max for the video stream itself.

Something people need to keep in mind is that really, who's going to know the difference if the DVD they are watching is encoded at 7, or 7.5, or 8...really. Most of my productions over the years are in the area of 2 hours, with some dance recitals and plays going 2.5 hours or a bit more even! And with some encoding tweaks, they still look good, never a complaint from the customers and I have burned THOUSANDS of DVDs over the years, most at 4.5 setting as an average.

I just don't want to propagate the misconception to newbies that they must aim for 8.0 or the DVD won't look good ;-)

Just completed a school play at 2 hrs. 9 minutes and it looks great on my 50" plasma (upconverting DVD player via HDMI).

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor


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eric pautsch
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Mar 30, 2012 at 9:41:51 pm

10.08 video and audio combined with a 9.8 mb/s ceiling for video only.

But, yeah....its not good practice to set a bitrate that high....I wish I would have stated that in my previous post.



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Carlos Angeli
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Mar 31, 2012 at 10:58:50 am

Thanks both. I used a 9.8 value at first, but I tried a lower value after your advice and there's not much difference.

I also didn't notice a big change between using different encoding matrix presets.


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Jeff Pulera
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Apr 2, 2012 at 7:05:44 pm

Hi Carlos,

Probably any encoding matrix will look fine at a high data rate. The advantage may be on low encode rates for long programs. I did a very long dance recital and had to encode at about 3.8 and result was good, but while testing I was able to see a definite difference between the standard encode matrix and the FOX1 option. Less noise around object edges.

Also note that I think on the first page in HC, there is a box with options of 8, 9, 10, 11, and if you hover the mouse over them it tells you for high data rate, low data rate, etc., so there are many variables to consider. But again, any tweaking will be more produce bigger results on lower data rates.

I am by no means an HC Encoder expert, but learning as I go.

Jeff Pulera
Safe Harbor


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Carlos Angeli
Re: HC Encoder - Quality settings
on Apr 3, 2012 at 7:55:13 pm

Thank you Jeff. Your advice helped me improve my workflow by far.


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