Using Your Mac Wisely: Video Content

When it comes to harnessing your Mac’s power for video encoding, you’re left with two choices: digital or physical.

Digital

Handbrake is the go to source for creating digital copies of your video. With Handbrake you can pop in a DVD and select the appropriate preset. You can encode straight to iPod, iPhone or Apple TV. Handbrake is open source, and completely free.

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iSquint is great for converting DivX/XviD to Mp4. It’s freeware for basic use, or you can purchase Visual Hub which offers a variety of services. For basic use, iSquint works well and converts fairly quickly. For the best iPod TV out settings, select:

  • Check Optimize for TV
  • Check H.264
  • Scale the slider to the quality setting of your choice

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Quick tip for your iPods. If you want to import a video without transferring it to iTunes. Be sure your iPod is set to “Manually Manage” and you can now drag and drop files right onto the iPod icon in iTunes and transfer straight to it.

Physical

MacTheRipper allows you to import DVD Vob files right to your Hard Drive. Couple it with Dvd2OneX and you can shrink the file down to 4.4 gigs so it will fit right on a single layer DVD-R. Personally, if you can find it, I prefer the original version of Dvd2OneX, not the new Dvd2OneX2. Also Dvd2One isn’t freeware and requires purchasing.

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Toast 8 will take your Dvd2One or MacTheRipper file and burn it for playback on DVD players. Toast 8 is not freeware and will require purchasing to unlock all its features. Be sure to select UDF in Toast 8 to ensure proper playback.

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iTunes
When dealing with importing videos into iTunes, it’s a simple drag and drop. If the video you copy doesn’t go into the proper category (Movie, TV Show, etc) be sure to edit the Metadata as follows:

  • Right click and select ‘Get Info’
  • Click the ‘Video’ tab
  • From the drop down select: TV Show, Movie, or Music Video

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Comment any questions, I’ll see if I can answer them. Also if you use any other resources or methods for converting your videos, I’d love to hear about them.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended for any illegal activity. What you do with it is your problem.

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