Another NTSC DVD to PAL DVD question



I know this sort of question comes up frequently so please forgive me. I’ve just spent two hours researching this and found nothing satisfactory.

I’ve just been sent a stack of burnt DVDs. Nero InfoTool tells me this about them:
Type: DVD Video (DVD-R)
Capacity: 3.36 GB
Layers: 1
Version: 5
Disc size: 12 cm
Video format: NTSC 4:3 (Mpeg 2, 720x480)
Region(s): All
Play Time: 55 minutes (00:55:52)

Obviously capacity and playtime vary a bit from disc to disc. The actual content is rips of some factory-recorded mid-1980s NTSC VHS tapes.

I’m in Australia (PAL) and my DVD players are a bit variable when playing these discs. The problems I get tend to be obviously related to the DVD playback, it’s definitely not the content. So I want to convert the discs (menus and all) to PAL and see what that achieves.

I’ve seen three methods that seem to be mostly reliable but I’m looking for a recommendation and a clearer explanation for the best of:

Nero Recode
DVD Santa

I have Nero Recode 3 Essentials (Nero 8 OEM), but I’m prepared to upgrade that or get either of the other two if necessary.

Thanks in advance!


Don’t bother with DVD Santa, and Nero Recode would not be my first choice either.

ConvertXtoDVD certainly claims this capability, but I have never used it for this process. If you must purchase a tool for these conversions, this is the one I would get. The trial will leave a watermark (not removable), but you should be able to test the program and see if it will convert the dvds to your satisfaction.

The best single step converter for this is ProCoder, but it is extremely expensive in comparison, and won’t keep menus.

You can also try a free conversion tool called AVStoDVD. It can use complete dvd video as input and output in either PAL or NTSC formats. There is a setting within AVStoDVD in Preferences–>Encoding, where you can select PAL speedup with NTSC film. This is a new addition to the program and I have not used it, but it replaces DGPulldown for conversion of the frame rate.

Since AVStoDVD is completely free, I would experiment with it at least once and see if it will perform this converstion well. Use the HC encoder within AVStoDVD for best quality output. Unfortunately you will lose menus using AVStoDVD, but the program will let you build a new one.


AVStoDVD is really good, I’m keeping that.

But I want to try and keep the DVD as I got it, just converted to PAL. I’ve got the apparently full-featured trial version of ConvertXtoDVD but I can’t see any options that seem to allow a direct transfer, it keeps trying to impose new menus and a new menu structure. So any clues as to what I’m missing?

I forgot to mention DVD2SVCD. I know that rips DVD to DVD but needs a separate codec. Is it capable of the kind of conversion I want? And if so which codec should I look for for the best results?


Sorry, as I said, I’m not familiar with ConvertXtoDVD. Maybe someone else will pitch in who has more experience using it. It does have a good reputation around here as a conversion program, especially for its speed, but it can’t compete in price or (in my opinion) the quality that AVStoDVD can produce using HC.

I wouldn’t use DVD2SVCD…I seriously doubt it can do this and retain menus.

I’m a little surprised you’re having to convert. Usually these queries are about PAL->NTSC rather than the other way round. PAL players and tv equipment can normally handle NTSC.



Might be easier to just get a new player which will play both formats IMHO


I have several very good players that play anything I give them. These discs are the only ones I’m having trouble with. My PC drives play them smoothly, even the drive I’m thinking of throwing out, but the actual players are jumpy.

Perhaps I would be better off ripping the menus and videos separately and rebuilding with separately converted elements?

Unless an expert on ConvertXtoDVD comes along to help me.