Downloaded AVI/MPG to DVD

It would be nice if everyone Posted in RAR'd DVD format - Ready to unRAR and Burn
BUT they don't !!!  So here's to all of you frustrated users  .  .  .
dealing with the plethora of AVI and MPG Movies  that are freely available on the Web .  .  .

Your best friends  are -  IMtoo and WinAVI !!
The fastest damn converter in Existence
(actually it is about equal in speed to WinAVI, but WinAVI is full of bugs)

*** also see Afterdawn Guides

Downloaded movies, events, etc  .  .  .  the new rage.  You can get these videos from Newsgroups and Torrents.  Unless there are a lot of seeds, the torrents are notoriously slow, taking up to a week of continuous downloading to get one movie.

The Legal DVD Formats

But here's the rub - these downloaded movies come in every conceivable format.  Occasionally you get lucky and can find a direct DVD rip with the VIDEO_TS folder intact and all the VOB's right there - ready to be burned.  If only everyone posted movies this way !!  But they don't.  90% of the stuff you will see is DivX AVI's, Xvid AVI's, and an assortment of low quality mpg files (most of them MPEG-1).  The worst part is that virtually none of these files meet the DVD standard !!!  So you must download, convert, demux, and finally - BURN !!

Here are some Methods:

*** first, read the "Elemental Streams" page to become familiar with these types of files.  A working knowledge is important.

Since most of the movies are already low quality - concentrate your efforts on creating a DVD from MPEG-1 VCD files (also see "Super-Compressed DVD's")

The Tools and the Steps


IMtoo to convert to MPEG-1,    Womble GOP Fixer to fix GOP and PTS errors,    DVD Lab Pro to Aithor and Burn DVD

IMtoo is one of the fastest MPEG-1 converters.  However it has two parameters which DVD Author will NOT accept - a VBV buffer that exceeds 40 kB, and it creates VBR MPEG-1 files.  Fortunately, the best authoring utility, DVD Lab, WILL ACCEPT these files !!! 

When creating a DVD from VCD MPEG-1 files, the standard sampling is 44.1 kHz.  However, DVD's require 48 kHz (and DVD-Lab insists on 48 kHz).  IMtoo can fix this for you.

You need to select their standard MPEG-1 template and then tweak it to the following, and save it as a new template - name it something like "DVD MPEG-1".  The desired settings are shown on the right, below:

Join the MPEGs (if there is more than one) - commonly the posted movies will be in 2 or more files.  Use IMtoo to get them into MPEG-1 DVD format, and then use Boilsoft joiner to concatenate them together.  OR use TMPGenc Plus - goto File/MPEG Tools, and select the "Merge and Cut" tab.

Fix the GOP and PTS errors  -  it seems like the vast majority of these MPEG's will have GOP/PTS errors.  DVD Lab is very intolerant of GOP and PTS errors.  It has its own fix tool but it does not work very well IMO.  So I use Womble's GOP fixer - but few people have that.  You will have to find your own utility for this step, or use DVD Lab's GOP fixer and hope that the GOP errors will not stop the video from being converted to DVD properly.  The most common problem you will see - it that when you import the DVD into DVD Lab, and it is demuxed  .  .  .  the length of the final video will be much shorter than the original MPG file !!  So always check the length of the MPG by starting it up (WMplayer will launch) and looking at the total time on the right.  Then check the assets window in DVD Lab and compare the times - they should be very close.

Now you should have one MPEG-1 file that is in the coirrect format for DVD LAB.  Open it in the assets window and it will denux the file into two files:  one "mpv" video file and one "mpa" audio file.

Double-click on the "Movie" in the main connections window, and drag both the mpv and the mpa file into the timeline

Click on the "Connection" tab at the bottom - then click on the Main Menu and hit "Delete" key, and then drag a connection from "First Play" to the "Movie"

select Project/Compile DVD"  .  .  .  select the folder, and click "Start"

when the compile had finished, select "Project/Burn DVD" to burn the video onto a blank DVD

DONE !!!



Here is the parameters of a typical AVI movie, posted as Xvid:

ConvertXtoDvd - a lot of people have been touting this as the best one-click AVI to DVD utility.  It is most popular for DivX and Xvid formats, which many people post up for movies because they compress so much.

HOWEVER - for me and for others - the utility takes up to 10 hours for a typical conversion !!!  Somehow others report a wait time of just 2 hours - go figger. 

Traditional Multi-Step Process - using the traditional tools mentioned above - starting with IMtoo to convert the AVI's to MPEG-1 files (or MPEG-2 if the AVI is 720x480, which is rare).  The typical size shown above is 512x384 - which is the most common.  If you stretch that out to 720x480 it will blur the video and take much more disc space (so that you may need a Dual Layer DVD-9 instead of a DVD-5 disc), and worst yet . . . it will take much longer to process.  Remember the rul of thumb - stretching is bad, while compressing the size is OK. 


- (also see the Afterdawn WinAVI Guide  and's Guide) this great utility is a true, 1-click AVI to DVD - this is a very fast converter and that is its claim to fame.  Quality is average.  As described in the "Tools Compared" page - it also is very buggy, but for this process it seems to work quite well for "some".  But for many it is BUGGY AS HELL !!  Just see the comments on the VideoHelp link.  So try it and see for yourself.   Some say that WinAVI 7 is full of issues and will give you very jerky playback once burnt - but if you downgrade to 6.3 it will run fine.

If you want a quick, no menu DVD . . . then this is probably the way to go.  This creates the VOB files, and then adds IFO files at the end . . . giving you a simple, "play the movie", disc.

Multiple AVI's to DVD - most of the posted movies have two AVI files, often referred to as "CD1" and "CD2".  You use WinAvi to put multiple AVI's onto a single DVD.  However, they will not be concatenated on the disc - they end up as separate Titles on the finished disk.  There isn't a menu, but most home DVD players allow you to choose which title you want to play.  The bright spot here, is that DVD players will play the files sequentially without forcing you to stop - and select the next one !!  By default, when you push play it plays the first title, then  when that one is done it automatically starts the 2nd one, 3rd, etc.  You also have some control - if you push the title select button and key in the number of the desired title, it jumps right to that one.  

NOTE:  once finished - use Nero or some other burner utility to burn the DVD

Multiple AVI/MPG files into one DVD with WinAVI

Make sure the files are in the same folder

Clcik the "DVD" button and then hold down the control key to select the file together and add them to the list of files

Now make your choice for the drop-down field, "For Source Files:" - there are three items available for you to choose:

  1. Create new DVD: one DVD will be created for each file.  WinAVI will create separate DVD folders for each file in the list. For example, if you convert 3 files to DVD format with this mode, winavi will then create separate DVD folders for each source file. There will be "DVD_01_1", "DVD_02_1", and "DVD_03_1" folders after the conversion.

  2. Merge into one DVD: each file will be on the same DVD but will be separate, distinct chapters and VOB series.  It will convert all files in the list into one DVD folder with different titles. That is, it will create separate .vob files for each relative source file into one DVD folder. For example, if you need to convert 3 different files to DVD format with this mode, then winavi will creat "Vts_01_1.VOB", "Vts_02_1.VOB" and "Vts_03_1.VOB" files in one DVD folder.

  3. Merge into one title: combines all files into one continuous movie.  It will convert all files in the list into one DVD folder with same title. For example, if you need to convert 3 different files to DVD folder with this mode, there will be VOB file with the name "Vts_01_1.VOB", "Vts_01_2.VOB"....

Common WinAVI Problems

when you try to burn the final compilation, Nero gives you the following error messages.  First the message "File size is not a multiple of a logical block size" shows up in the event list, then the error "DVD-Video files reallocation failed" pops up:

The DVD specs say that the VOB file must be 1GB less 2KB, or less - and must be divisible by 2 kB :

    1 GB = 1024 MB = 1024 x 1024 kB = 1,048,576 kB
    1 GB - 2 kb  =  1,048,574 kB

So the files created by WinAVI should not exceed 1,048,574 kB, and should be divisible by 2 kB.  In this case, the most likely culprit is that the last VOB file, which is the smallest, is an odd number of kB and is NOT divisible by 2 kB.  Here is the fix, and a couple of alternatives:

The Fix - delete the IFO and BUP files - then run Womble's GOP fixer on the last VOB - and then run IFOedit to rcreate the IFO and BUP files

Alternatives - in most cases you can go ahead and burn it - and it will play just fine.  The only problem is with that last, ending of the final VOB - so big deal.  There will be no errors midway through the video.  Or, of course, you can always rerun the compilation using different software - but why spend hours redoing it?