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Blu-ray Burner - High Quality Production of HD Discs with ed

by NoobCNet34 / May 4, 2013 9:04 PM PDT

Could do with the assistance of others out there.

I am looking to either hire someone to burn raw footage to blu-ray discs or alternatively obtaining a blu ray burner that will produce very high quality discs that are not region locked and can be played on a Mac laptop.

The footage is currently 4 hours long and is in .MOV format with the codec in Apple ProRes 422 (LT) Linear PCM Timecode

The File Size is over 128GB

Also what kind of software would I need to split a 4 hour movie into segmented parts to put on separate blu rays so that the quality of the film is not impacted due to high compression rates?

Any help with this would be fantastic

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All Answers

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We have a couple of conflicting items...
by boya84 / May 5, 2013 6:21 AM PDT

Burning the Blu Ray discs means using a Blue Ray burner - simple enough. I like LaCie. These computer-connected drives can play back the video, too... These should not be "region locked" as they are personally burned. It seems you want to make them playable in other Blu Ray players - but as MOV files, that is not possible because, as far as I know, Blue Ray players connected to a TV don't understand MOV file type. They generally understand MTS file type... By burning the MOV file type to the Blue Ray optical disc, the storage media is being used as a data disc - similar to if you were to burn a Microsoft Excel or Word file to the Blue Ray Disc - the Blue Ray player connected to the TV would not be able to deal with those files, but if used in a Blue Ray drive connected to a computer, the computer would be able to get to the file.

The reason the file is so large (at 128 gig for 4 hours) is it seems there is no or very little compression. We don't know why you need to keep it in this format - but it is what it is... When I import an hour of HDV or even high quality AVCHD-compressed high definition format video, it decompresses and consumes about 44 gig of computer hard drive space. 44 x 4 hours = 176 gig... so it seems there is *some* compression in your file.

Any video editor (like Final Cut) could segment the video. It is possible that iMovie can to - but we don't know which Mac, (more importantly, CPU, RAM, available hard drive space) or version OSX it is running and we don't know all the resources you have available.

An easier method would be to make multiple copies on to portable hard drives like
For $50 and a USB connection, you can copy the entire 128 gig and still have lots of space leftover.

Assuming you go the LaCie route, that means (there are less expensive solutions, I just like LaCie)
+ Final Cut ~$300 + learn how to use it (even for this single activity)
+ Blue Ray blank discs...
Round numbers without the learning curve, ~$600. For that you can get a BUNCH of 320 gig portable USB external hard drives, so you have redundancy and no segmentation of the video is required (so no Final Cut, no Blue Ray burner, no Blue Ray blank discs).

Whether the Mac laptop can play back this video is unknown. Unless somehow modified, Macintosh laptops with a SuperDrive cannot deal with Blue Ray discs (only regular single layer or double layer DVDs), so that statement in the second paragraph is a non-starter.

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Further details
by NoobCNet34 / May 7, 2013 12:23 AM PDT

I had thought about the HD option, but my wife insists that it needs to be playable on the TV and with some copies in blu ray players and others in DVD players.

Also we desire it to be at least equal to commercial DVD quality

We have a MacBook Pro 2012 Edition

2.5GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 with 3MB 1.3 cache
500GB 5400rpm HDD
Intel HD Graphics 4000

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Need to draw outside the lines...
by boya84 / May 11, 2013 5:26 AM PDT
In reply to: Further details

There is no "single file" or "best file type" that will meet *ALL* requirements.

When I render the final product I make

One high quality, low compression, high definition, media file from iMovie or Final Cut. With the project open in the video editor, under "File" or "Share" (it depends on the version of iMovie; Final Cut is under File), select Export Using QuickTime. In there you'll find all sorts of options - but it is best to save at low compression and high quality - I usually select h.264, high quality, multi-pass, 1920x1080, de-interlace - leave the audio and filters alone. Name the file and set the destination desired. In your case, you may be already at this point with the file you have - but since you want to break the video file up, using a video editor may be your best bet.

The resulting file is used by the

... DVD authoring application to render the DVD player playable DVD. I use iDVD (used to be bundled with iLife, along with iMovie, GarageBand, and a few other useful tools). I don't know if it is on your Mac. iDVD allows you to create a menu with background stills or video, audio, scene selection buttons... it is too bad Apple dropped it from iLife. It was pretty cool. I also use DVD Studio Pro (used to be bundled with Final Cut - seems gone, too). Apple's Compressor app should do - and it can also create the Blue Ray compatible files you need. PLEASE NOTE: Regular DVD playable files are Standard definition, VOB compressed. Regular blank single layer DVDs can hold up to 4.7 gig of data (MOV files) or 120 minutes of standard definition video. Regular blank double layer DVDs can hold up to 8.5 gig of data (MOV files) or 240 minutes of standard definition video. You say you have 4 hours of video: 4 hours x 60 minutes per hour = 240 minutes. If you need menus and scene selection and all that on the DVD playable discs, this will not fit on one double layer disc. I usually reserve about 10 minutes of space/time for background video/audio/stills and scene selection buttons.

... transcoder (like MPEG StreamClip or HandBrake) to create files for other devices. In this case, HandBrake is good because they include decent presets for other devices. For example, you do not need the highest quality, low compression video file for playback on an iPod or other media device. The small screen is perfectly happy with lots of compression. The HandBrake presets can take care of this.

... Blue Ray burner for the Blue Ray disc file rendering. We already talked about getting the LaCie burner so I won't cover that again.

... the file to be uploaded to YouTube or Vimeo can be high quality without taking up that much space. Some compression is "acceptable" and still remains visually clean.

... transcoder again - the video quality at 1280x720 is good for computer monitor playback or use in iTunes (with the computer connected to a HDTV using HDMI or VGA connection). It also looks great when used through an AppleTV or other video media server connected to a HDTV.

The 4 gig RAM is a little light, but can work. The internal 500 gig drive is small (we don't know how much available space there is) and too slow to deal with this... better to use an external USB or firewire drive (perhaps your MacBook has a Thunderbolt port - so either an external Thunderbolt connecting drive or use of the Firewire adapter cable is needed for the external drive) and spinning at 7200 rpm or even 10,000 rpm media drives will be a lot better.

If you decide not to make the investment and farm this out, who might do this? Off the top of my head, perhaps there is a "video conversion service" nearby, check with local wedding videographers... and if they are not willing to take on the project, try the local university and see if the "film department" is willing to take on a file conversion project (that would be similar to what would be done after vide is captured/edited). In both cases, expect to pay for the services.

To meet all your playback requirements, more than one render will be needed...

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