DVDRanger CinEx HD

Over the last couple of days, I’ve been working with the newest version of DVDRanger and their CinEx HD module for removal of Cinavia DRM. Earlier editions of the software did actually remove Cinavia detection, but at great cost to the sound quality of the audio stream. That is no longer a problem with CinEx HD.

For those of you who might not know, Cinavia is a watermark placed in the audio stream of Blu-ray movies (and a tiny number of commercially made DVDs). It is designed to be detected by newer Blu-ray stand-alone players, and by any software player that is certified by the AACS consortium, which oversees encryption for Blu-ray. Detection happens almost immediately, but playback on commercially made discs continues for about 20 minutes, at which point a warning appears on the screen and the audio is muted. Cinavia is officially part of the AACS encryption, but is not mandatory. Many studios do not use it as of yet because of licensing costs.

For movies that do have Cinavia, it is most definitely an issue for making fair use backups and playing discs from Blu-ray players or the certified software players. DVDRanger has come up with a means to prevent detection of this form of DRM.

If you wish to go through the step-by-step examination of the program by members here and replies from the developers, take a look at this long thread: http://club.myce.com/f62/dvd-ranger-releases-cinex-hd-promises-unsurpassed-sound-quality-335484/

I will do a quick outline of my experiences with the program here. An early version of DVDRanger CinEx HD had some problems, especially in using their database information and with truncating video. This was quickly corrected in the newer version

In order to break Cinavia, you must download a database executable file and run it. This places the necessary information for your particular disc in a folder that the DVDRanger program can access. After that, you select the type of output you want…I was making HD MP4 files with the highest stock resolution and bitrate available.

The movie I was working with was This is the End, which surprisingly, was not a Sony release, but rather from Columbia Pictures. The MP4 file I made using AAC audio had very good sound quality, and no distortion that I can detect, though my ears are not good enough to judge these things well. Playing from the file on the hard drive, Arcsoft TMT 6 could not detect Cinavia in this file. I had already made certain that TMT 6 would detect it in the original ripped Blu-ray, so this was and is a great success for DVDRanger.

The MP4 file I made using AC3 audio was not a complete victory however. TMT 6 would not play the audio at all, nor would PotPlayer. Three other players, including PowerDVD 13, VLC and MPC-HC had no problems playing the audio. I tried changing formats with tsMuxeR, but this file crashed that program. So I eventually had to demux the audio and video streams using My MP4Box GUI, then introduce those into tsMuxeR to make a Blu-ray video. This Blu-ray played with no problems from the hard drive using TMT 6, and playing from a burned BD-RE disc, PowerDVD 13 played it just fine. No Cinavia messages appeared in either program.

My conclusion for the file using AC3 is that their program has some small bug/glitch in muxing AC3 audio in an MP4 container. Not a big deal, and probably something they can easily fix if they ever get a free moment to do so.

So what’s the catch with this program? Well, there is a big one. The CinEx HD section of the program relies on databases derived from individual copies of Blu-ray discs. Each database has to be developed by the DVDRanger programmers, and then posted on their site for download. At the time of this article, only 10 movies have databases available. And the database for your movie may not work. There are variations in the movies that are distributed. DVDRanger has set up a way of checking and possibly cross-mapping your version so that it will work with the database. The instructions for this are set out clearly on their site, though it is not a dead simple process: http://www.dvd2hd.com/database-and-cross-mapping/

So, my conclusion is that the program is working in its intended manner, but only for a few movies at this point in time. As they write more database files, this program will become a valuable asset for anyone concerned with the removal of Cinavia.

I’ll be posting some sample clips in a following post for those who wish to hear the sound quality produced by DVDRanger CinEx HD.

Edit: Many thanks to Adbear for continued testing of this program, revealing what it actually does. Also thanks to Pelvis Popcan for letting me know of the latest developments.

One other thing that I should point out. DVDRanger does not include decryption of the regular AACS encryption, so you should run AnyDVD HD or DVDFab Passkey in the background and work from the disc in the optical drive.

They have adjusted the program slightly, so that it is possible to work with ripped files on the hard drive instead of directly from the disc, but you must have the Any! folder made by AnyDVD HD included in these files, or the DvdFab! folder, or the original AACS folder from the original disc.

It should be noted that at this point although he’s said he’s implementing the ability to decode from a folder that version hasn’t been released yet.
And to be honest having just read through the instructions on how to find out if your disc is in the database or not I can’t see most people wanting to do this as it’s quite time consuming and complicated for the normal user

First attempt at linking the clips went awry. Trying again.

http://upload.cdfreaks.com/Kerry56/This is the End AC3 audio.mkv

This one works, but is slow and cranky. I’ll probably have to upload to Videohelp.com. I’ll leave a link.

Here is the link to the thread at Videohelp that has both clips:


Both clips have pretty decent sound…:iagree::iagree:

I am not a videophile or an audiophile so I cannot make an assessment, I count on Kerry to make these judgments because he is our resident expert and if he says its acceptable I believe it. That said, I have listened to both and as RW has said they both sound very acceptable to my old ears. :wink:

There has been a new development in testing with this program. Take a look at post number 198 of the long thread on DVDRanger CinEx HD. http://club.myce.com/f62/dvd-ranger-releases-cinex-hd-promises-unsurpassed-sound-quality-335484/index8.html#post2721119

Inserting a sound track, intact, from another movie into a different one would not occur if the original sound was being used at all. You would get a jumbled mess. So it seems that the DVDRanger program does nothing more than replace the audio, and does not deal with Cinavia at all.

Now, replacing audio streams was an early solution for Cinavia, but it isn’t always easy to do…to get the timing correct, because the Blu-ray and DVD audio tracks don’t always align exactly. If DVDRanger has gone to the trouble to do this, their program would be a convenient way of switching audio.

But to fit onto a 96mb file, DVDRanger must have encoded it at a very low bitrate, then used a compression program to zip it down in size. (though audio files don’t seem to be very compressible with something like 7zip). When the program unzips it, the audio is re-encoded at a much higher bitrate, making it look like a good quality audio stream, when in fact the lost bitrate on their first encode is never regained. The sound will not be nearly the same quality as the original.

Edit: This will teach me to jump the gun. More evidence from Adbear shows that the original audio does still exist in some tiny amounts, so this [B]can’t[/B] be a simple swap of audio streams. I’m going to have to run some tests myself, before I can come up with any solid conclusions.