[MacDV] Video project - VHS to DVD to DV to DVD

Robert L. Vaessen rvaessen at mac.com
Wed Sep 15 17:45:06 PDT 2004

Hello -

I'm new to the list and new to video editing on the Mac. I tried 
searching TheMacintoshGuy.com archives for information pertinent to my 
rather daunting task, but the archive was a single gzip'd file that 
contained two messages? Previous searches on the internet failed to 
locate a comprehensive tutorial that worked through the steps listed 
below. All I could find was a little nugget at a time.

Anyway. Hopefully, someone will take up my rather daunting challenge 
and lend a hand. Even a small snippet would help.

Heres a little bit of background
A long time ago (August 1984) my friends and I made a home video (No 
it's not a porno). This movie was made with a rented VHS camera, and 
edited by one of the cast members using some video editing equipment 
(yes equipment, video has changed a lot since then), and an edited 
version of the movie has existed on VHS all these years.

The quest is born
Recently, we (Myself and some of the other cast members) decided that 
we had enough computing hardware, expertise, software to move the movie 
to DVD in an effort to re-master and preserve our favorite movie.

Thus began a great quest; an epic restoration project unlike anything 
we had ever experienced before.

The challenge defined
Here are the steps that define our project. Steps have changed/evolved 
as the project moved forward. I've spent well over three weeks just 
getting to step 2, and I've got two coasters already.

+ Step 1: Obtain original footage on VHS.
Completed: Two VHS tapes were located. One raw footage, one edited 
production copy. Quality was poor but legible.
+ Step 2: Convert analog VHS to DVD. We probably should have gone 
straight to DV, but we didn't...
Completed: Two DVDs produced using a hardware analog to DVD converter. 
The conversion process stabilized the tracking, eliminated some video 
artifacts, and improved the overall quality of the movie. The DVDs 
contain a VIDEO_TS folder with the following contents (from now on I 
will only refer to one of the DVDs).
+ Step 3: Take the DVD and read the data back into the computer. Need 
to do this in order to perform video and audio editing of the movie 
using iMovie.
+ Step 4: Take the DVD data, now that it's back on the computer and 
convert it into a format that iMovie can read.
+ Step 5: Edit the movie using iMovie.
+ Step 6: Save the iMovie output in a format that can be read by iDVD.
+ Step 7: Use iDVD in order to add menus, and burn the re-mastered data 
back onto a DVD.

The players
Now that I have defined the steps, I will provide a list of video 
software that I currently possess:

1: QuickTime Pro 6.5.1.
2: QuickTimeMPEG2.component 6.4 (found in the /Macintosh 
HD/System/Library/ directory). Where can I verify the use/existence of 
MPEG2 in QuickTime?
3: MacTheRipper 2.0.1
4: DVD Player 4.0
5: DVD Imager 1.2
6: iDVD 4.0.1
7: iMovie 4.0
8: MacTheRipper 2.0.1
9: mpgtx-14-beta-4 (Is this version 1.1 or 1.4b4?)
10: Sizzle 0.5
11: VLC media player 0.7.2
12: yade X 0.95b
13: Dragon Burn 4.0.22

The current state of affairs
Given all the components listed, here is what I've used them for so far 
(Steps 1 & 2 have already been satisfied):

A: Used MacTheRipper in order to create a disc image of the DVD data. 
When mounted, the disc image duplicates the contents/directory 
structure of the DVD containing the movie. This satisfies step 3. The 
data is back on the computer at this point. Data is now contained 
within a mountable disc image. The data in the disc image resides 
inside a VIDEO_TS folder.

B: Used QuickTime Pro to play one of the .VOB files from the mounted 
disc image (.VOB files are inside the VIDEO_TS folder). Created DV 
output using QuickTime Pro's export function.

How to complete the quest
This is where things fall apart...

I now find myself stuck at step 3. Every time I try to move forward, I 
find myself stymied by the myriad depth and complexity of this quest. 
Given the tools listed above. How do I get from step 3 to step 7? Here 
are some specific questions regarding each of the remaining steps...

- Step 4: What format should I convert the DVD data into?. Do I need to 
convert the audio and video separately? What format does the audio need 
to be in? What format does the video need to be in? Do I need to 
somehow separate/demultiplex the audio and video streams? Is QuickTime 
Pro (With MPEG2 plug-in) capable of generating an output that can be 
imported by iMovie?
- Step 5: Do I need to make sure that the files going into iMovie are 
no larger than a certain size? What do I use to segment the DVD data 
prior to iMovie import? Do I need to segment the audio and the video?
- Step 6: What format does iMovie output? What format do I need to 
output if I want to add menus/prepare the data for DVD burn?
- Step 7: Can iDVD burn data to a DVD so that the DVD will play in a 
commercial hardware DVD player? (Not a data disc) Should I use Dragon 
Burn to produce the DVD video disc? Is there any benefit to using 
Dragon Burn over iDVD?

In closing
Wow! That's a lot to digest.

Perhaps you could help me in some small way. Perhaps you know the 
answer to one or two questions. I'm not expecting anyone to hold my 
hand the entire way, I'm just trying to find my way through the rather 
daunting gauntlet of DV editing and production.

- Robert

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