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Tech Culture: Convert DVD to Web video

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Tech Culture: Convert DVD to Web video

3:39 /

Got some home-recorded video on DVD you want to put on your Web site? Tom Merritt shows you how.

[ music ] ^M00:00:12 >> Want to share a home movie you recorded on DVD, and I'll put it up on You Tube? I'm Tom Merritt, editor from CNET.com. On this edition of Insider Secrets I'll show you how to convert your DVD into a web video. ^M00:00:22 [ background music ] In this litigious world in which we live a lot of people told me I can't do this video, it's illegal. Let's be clear. It's not. I'm not talking about circumventing copyright protection to copy Hollywood movies, I'm talking about your own home movies, stuff you've recorded on a camcorder, maybe a DVD recorder. So here's how to take those home movies, and put them up on the internet, and embarrass your Uncle Bob. Now I've got here a DVD a friend of mine back in Greenville, Illinois gave me of baseball coaches talking at a clinic that he puts on. Now he wants to take these DVD videos and put them up on his website. The first thing we'll need is a program to convert the DVD video into a smaller, more web-friendly format. There's hundreds of programs that do this, some you pay for, others are my favorite price, free. I'm gonna use the free Auto Gordian Knot [assumed spelling] two point two seven because I know it works. However, the person who wrote it, Lenox, has stopped developing it. If you use Mac or Linux, try Hand Brake, and maybe by the time you watch this video there'll be a stable version of Hand Brake for windows. There's an unstable version right now you can give a shot. The idea in all of these programs is the same. Tell the program where to find the file. Files on DVDs are called .vob, that's what you point to. Then tell it where to put the converted file when you're done. Remember, video files are big, so make sure you have enough space on your hard drive. Select the audio track you want in the final file. There's often only one. Then select the output size. Now remember, the smaller the file size, the worse the video might look, so you have to balance it. If you don't know, use the target quality as a guide. Web video can be much smaller than DVD video because it's meant to play in a small box on the web, rather than up on the big screen. Now let's look at the advanced settings. The output resolution settings are important. You Tube asks for three twenty by two forty. Choose your preferred audio type, I'd suggest MP3. The codec is how the video is encoded. It's different from the file type. xVid or Divx are quite common codecs for avi, the output format here. Other programs like Hand Brake might use the H.264 or mpg codecs, and output QuickTime movies. Now, if you want to make sure your movie will look right, you can do a preview. My preview for the large DVD chunk I have here will take about twenty minutes, that's still less time than the full encoding. Now hold on while I speed up time. Magic of video, and I'm back twenty minutes later. Preview looks good, all right. Let's start the full encoding. Time to use my time machine again. Whew, an hour later and the video is fully encoded. Yeah, this stuff takes time. Let's take a look. Check it out, a lovely small web-ready piece of video, just waiting to be embedded on my friend's web page. You got a second, let's fast forward to a couple days from now when I finally get around to putting this on You Tube. Ah fantastic, you're still here. And I finally put that video up on the web. Look at that. One thing to note, your video may be longer than you want, you know, to put on the web, so see our Insider Secret on video editing if you want to chop it down. That's it for this edition of Insider Secrets, I'm Tom Merritt for CNET.com. Use your newfound conversion powers for good. ^M00:03:35 [ music ]

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