DVD Ranger

Since I got sucked into the DVD Ranger Cinavia discussion, I decided to take a look at the current trial version of this program, and do a test encode.

At first glance, it looks similar to quite a few of the multi-conversion programs that are available on the net, with many different presets for specific hardware. Many of the presets are for mobile devices, like smartphones and tablets, but there are a few in there that surprised me. They still have a preset for HD-DVD for example.

To find the more generic outputs, you need to look at the TV tab. Apple TV is the first choice, but there are also settings for converting to HD-DVD, Blu ray, Xvid and dvd-video.

Quality controls are not particularly fine grained. If you want control over the encoding parameters, you won’t find it in this program. But it really isn’t intended for those who would do this…it is targeted towards the general public. The controls you do get in this gui are High Speed, Speed, Balanced, Quality, and High Quality.

The Custom output tab doesn’t seem to work at all. But this may simply be my inexperience in using the program, and if I were really interested, I’d do some research on how to use this tab. Don’t think so during the short trial I have.

For my test encode I used a blu ray ripped to the hard drive as input. It is encoded with VC-1 and uses TrueHD Dolby audio. My output target was a 720p encode in blu ray format, using H264 at 6000kb and 192kb AC3 audio. There didn’t seem to be any other choices for audio output other than just passing the original through. I used the High Quality setting.

The first attempt seemed to be working fine. 2hrs and 21 minutes later it gave me the little audio jingle that said the encode had finished successfully. But when I opened the output folder, it was empty. ???
So, I thought, again, this is just my inexperience using the program. I went through the steps once more, but this time put the temporary folder in the same folder as the output. After the second encode the output folder was empty again, but the temp folder had the entire blu ray video intact.

Examining the output m2ts file brought some surprises. They are using X264 as the encoder, and the quality of this video was really pretty good.

Here is the MediaInfo text:

ID                                       : 1 (0x1)
Complete name                            : F:\AVS Output\BDTemp\BDMV\STREAM\00001.m2ts
Format                                   : BDAV
Format/Info                              : Blu-ray Video
File size                                : 5.63 GiB
Duration                                 : 1h 56mn
Overall bit rate                         : 6 911 Kbps

ID                                       : 4113 (0x1011)
Menu ID                                  : 1 (0x1)
Format                                   : AVC
Format/Info                              : Advanced Video Codec
Format profile                           : High@L4.1
Format settings, CABAC                   : Yes
Format settings, ReFrames                : 4 frames
Codec ID                                 : 27
Duration                                 : 1h 56mn
Bit rate                                 : 6 436 Kbps
Nominal bit rate                         : 6 000 Kbps
Width                                    : 1 280 pixels
Height                                   : 720 pixels
Display aspect ratio                     : 16:9
Frame rate mode                          : Variable
Color space                              : YUV
Chroma subsampling                       : 4:2:0
Bit depth                                : 8 bits
Scan type                                : Progressive
Stream size                              : 5.24 GiB (93%)
Writing library                          : x264 core 123
Encoding settings                        : cabac=1 / ref=1 / deblock=1:0:0 / analyse=0x3:0x113 / me=hex / subme=6 / psy=1 / psy_rd=1.00:0.00 / mixed_ref=0 / me_range=4 / chroma_me=0 / trellis=0 / 8x8dct=1 / cqm=0 / deadzone=21,11 / fast_pskip=1 / chroma_qp_offset=-2 / threads=6 / sliced_threads=0 / nr=0 / decimate=1 / interlaced=0 / bluray_compat=0 / constrained_intra=0 / bframes=6 / b_pyramid=2 / b_adapt=1 / b_bias=0 / direct=1 / weightb=1 / open_gop=0 / weightp=2 / keyint=250 / keyint_min=25 / scenecut=40 / intra_refresh=0 / rc_lookahead=40 / rc=abr / mbtree=1 / bitrate=6000 / ratetol=1.0 / qcomp=0.60 / qpmin=4 / qpmax=51 / qpstep=3 / vbv_maxrate=30000 / vbv_bufsize=2000 / nal_hrd=none / ip_ratio=1.40 / aq=1:1.00

ID                                       : 4352 (0x1100)
Menu ID                                  : 1 (0x1)
Format                                   : AC-3
Format/Info                              : Audio Coding 3
Mode extension                           : CM (complete main)
Format settings, Endianness              : Big
Codec ID                                 : 129
Duration                                 : 1h 56mn
Bit rate mode                            : Constant
Bit rate                                 : 192 Kbps
Channel(s)                               : 2 channels
Channel positions                        : Front: L R
Sampling rate                            : 48.0 KHz
Bit depth                                : 16 bits
Compression mode                         : Lossy
Delay relative to video                  : -125ms
Stream size                              : 160 MiB (3%)

ID                                       : 4096 (0x1000)
Menu ID                                  : 1 (0x1)
Duration                                 : 1h 56mn
List                                     : 4113 (0x1011) (AVC) / 4352 (0x1100) (AC-3)
Service name                             : Service01
Service provider                         : FFmpeg
Service type                             : digital television

The build of X264 they are using seems to be very old. If my calculations are correct, there have been 32 updates to the encoder since this one.

So, overall, rather good output from the program. It wasn’t very fast, but again, I was using their best quality setting.

I don’t think the program will appeal to video enthusiasts who like total control over their encoding settings, but I’ve seen much worse for those who want a simple control system, and good quality output. I don’t think it compares favorably to many of the free programs that can use X264. Some of them are able to combine simplicity of choice in preset targets with finer controls that are available if you need them. VidCoder and Handbrake are two such free programs.

Nice job Kerry. Excellent explaination of the program.:wink:

Yeah, I don’t see the point with this program since there are several up to date freeware x264 front-end programs that are outstanding.
One would think if there were true program writers with this company, they would be using more recent version of the encoder…yet most of these cheap payware encoders are front-ends for freeware encoders…most of them use a form of ffmpeg…and don’t mention they are using it…they prey on the ignorant and uninformed.
So much for innovation…
Only saving grace will be if their cinavia breaker works…

Thats a great tool!


Was this expected for delivery Oct 31, 2012? (I don’t remember where the exploding-fireworks thread was, nor do I really care to find it again!)

Very fair summary for the program Kerry.

Should be a decent software for those who are looking for a quick fix; simple enough and does a good job for the most part. However, those in the know will find it lacking.

Pretty much the same in my world, you have "motorcycle enthusiasts and then there are “bikers”.

Kipper, what brand of bike do you own as a “Biker”?

[QUOTE=Blue-J;2669906]Kipper, what brand of bike do you own as a “Biker”?[/QUOTE]

2010 Ultra Limited. My type of SUV, but then again at my age the comfort is sweet.