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Compressing multiple movie files for one DVD

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Nick Cronk
Compressing multiple movie files for one DVD
on Mar 17, 2011 at 4:24:25 am

Hi all, I looked around the forums and elsewhere for an answer but didn't find anything addressing my problem.

So, I've taken on the job of transferring someone's old VHS tapes onto DVD. So I've captured all the footage onto my Mac through Fcp and I've broken the footage into five different sequences, each of which, I had planned, would fit onto its own DVD. So I ran the first of these batches through Compressor with the "150min DVD Fastest Encode" setting. The movie compressed fine and I was happy with the quality. The problem is that I wanted to split all this footage that I've compressed for this single DVD into separate movies to be accessed from the DVD menu. I thought I could do the compression first, then re-import the footage into Fcp in its compressed, m2v form, and then edit it into individual movies and export them as mov files or whatever that would still fit on the one DVD. Problem is, when I get them back into Fcp to cut them up, the compressed m2v files don't play properly on the timeline. Now, I've read elsewhere that Fcp is not designed to edit already compressed m2v and I understand that. Really I'm just looking for any workflow advice that might help me achieve my goal. If I edit each of my five chunks of footage into separate little movies in Fcp, is there then a way I can compress the multiple movies down to fit them all on one DVD? While still keeping them as separate movies? Maybe a Compressor setting I'm not seeing?

Any advice on how to work this would be greatly appreciated.

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Neil Sadwelkar
Re: Compressing multiple movie files for one DVD
on Mar 17, 2011 at 6:54:12 am

You can place the m2v files in a DVD Studio Pro timeline, put markers where you need to split the full program, then have buttons in a menu jump to the marker and play.
If you want to viewer to be returned to the menu after the chapter has played out you can set up an end jump.

You could also put markers on the FCP timeline and export with markers which are then visible in the m2v and DVDSP can use them.

FCP cannot edit an m2v. This facility has been disabled probably to prevent easy piracy of commercial titles.

Neil Sadwelkar
twitter: fcpguru
FCP Editor, Edit systems consultant
Mumbai India

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Jeff Greenberg
Re: Compressing multiple movie files for one DVD
on Mar 17, 2011 at 2:26:54 pm

Making sure I understand this: You have five individual pieces on a single timeline that you want to be able to play individually in DVDSP?

Take your m2v into DVDSP

Drop it into a track. Add Markers at the beginning of the track ...and then at the end of each movie.

Create a 'story'. A story plays whatever markers you list from a track. If there were 10 markers, and you said play "1,2,7" then it would play only the sections that start at that marker until it hits the next marker.

Then hook your buttons up to those stories.


Jeff G

Apple Master Trainer | Avid Cert. Instructor DS/MC
Come See me speak at NAB!
Compressor Essentials from
(older but still good) Marquee, Media Composer (3.5) and Basic/Advanced Color DVDs (1.0) from
Contact me through my Website

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Nick Cronk
Re: Compressing multiple movie files for one DVD
on Mar 17, 2011 at 4:17:08 pm

Nice. Thanks for responding so quickly. Okay, I see, it's more an issue to be approached in DVD Studio Pro, not in FCP or Compressor. I guess I need to get better acquainted with DVDSP and figure that out. Thanks again for the help guys.

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