I'm a movie buff and want to move in the 21st century - HELP

vbimport

#1

Hi

I have an extensive collection (over 1000) dvd’s (as well as the usual stack of cds and digital photos) that I want to be able to store on an external hard drive that links to my laptop and tv. To do this I need to a) by a new laptop, b) buy a new wireless router, c) buy some sort of media streamer, d) learn what software is best and e) understand what level of storage/ compression (?) etc i need. Ultimately I’d lke to be able to sit in my living room with access to all my music, photos and movies.

My only experience is burning the odd cd through windows media.

Please help!!

Brgds

Steven


#2

I’ll let those that are already streaming give you specific hardware advice. I still store and playback everything on optical discs. I would only suggest that you adopt a system that will meet your needs (1080p, etc.) going forward. Last time I looked, the stuff to wirelessly stream true HD content was pricey. There are some new media boxes that are basically 1TB hard drives with hardware H264/AVC encoder/decoders and HDMI outputs. You will still need something like DVDFab to decrypt content prior to storage.


#3

thanks. Does this mean that it will compress the file so I can store more? If so will the wireless media streamer sat next to my tv need to be able to read it or does that happen automatically?


#4

Yes, DVDFab will decrypt and convert the movie using any of several MPEG-4 coding schemes. A typical movie converted with settings suitable for a bigscreen TV usually runs around 1.5GB depending on run time. This saves lots of space but removes menus/extras etc. DVDFab will also decrypt the movie to a DVD-compliant HDD folder that will be larger but will preserve all the features and video quality of the original disc. I’ll let the others make suggestions on hardware.


#5

Some questions you should answer to get meaningful suggestions:

[ol]
[li]What kind of TV do/will you have to play these on? An older tube TV? A large projection screen? A brand new 40" or higher 1080p?[/li][li]What kind of sound system do/will you be using? The TV speaker? Dolby 7.1 surround sound throughout the room?[/li][li]Are you interested in or do you already have a Blu-Ray player?[/li][li]Can you or a friend run a network work to the TV area (much more flexible and reliable than wireless)?[/li][li]What is your budget for the streaming project?[/li][li]Do you want to be able to view the DVD menus or just play the movies using your remote?[/li][li]Are you looking to stream movies to more than one room in the house or even more than one at a time?[/li][/ol]


#6

if you are a movie buff, can you live with ANY compression or will you always prefer the original 100% quality

do you want the entire 1000 dvd collection all on line at once. that would requre about 5Tb storage ! and the rips would take 200 hours at 15 mins per DVD

to compress into a highh quality streaming format could take another 1-2 hours per movie so you are looking at up to 2000 hours to build the library. don’t know what that is in days & weeks but it’s a lot of geek time to invest before you are good to go!


#7

[QUOTE=signals;2149537]I still store and playback everything on optical discs…[/QUOTE]

interesting -

I rip & store anything expensive/out of print/ hard to replace to at least one hard drive ( more if I’m feeling especially paranoid)

I figure that the rip stage should give a 100% perfect digiatal image , minus the unwanted crap & protections, & that it is during burns that glitches & gremlins can creep in.

also, I do not know the longevity of DVD+R - how old are your oldest backups now & do you ever check that they still work OK ?


#8

Other questions…and things i do…

You WILL want a secure backup of your stuff somewhere unless you own the original DVD’s…How long ‘original’ DVD’s will last - see here http://www.computervideo.net/sep03-1.html - otherwise you will need to double your capacity for backup purposes.

Wireless streaming is also not something I would advocate…but it is do-able…but not for HD yet IMHO. So stick to wired…

For streaming I have a 4gb RAM / P4 Pc running Windows Xp and Tversity which streams to my Xbox / My PS3 / MY Philips Streaming device.

I make copies of the Main Movies ONLY of the DVD’s I own by use DVD Mobile / VOB Passthu which retains the sound and vision quality.

I also haven’t done my entire DVD collection…just the one’s I want to view now and again…so I would seriously question how many of your 1000 you need to do/store.

I also check every time I copy a DVD to ensure it’s copied properly so add another 5/10 minutes per DVD to the time calculation above…

But hey go for it mate…best way to view your movies…!


#9

i would expect a factory pressed DVD to last “forever” while stored inside its case, but a DVD that you burn yourself iuses different technology - written layer could deteriorate over time ( dunno how fast though).

as for scratches & fingermarks, that depends how careful you are - if you grew up with vinyl LPS you quickly learnt how important it was to be careful!

the 2 elements I consider when planning backups are:

1 how much would it cost to replace the original source DVD , and

  1. how long did I spend customising it. If e.g. you spent 2 hours per movie converting to IPOD format you really don’t want to have to go through all of that twice!

I now think of a 3rd point: how long would it take to replace the original e.g. If I can only buy it as an obscure import that’s gonna take 3 weeks to arrive, then I might invest in an extra backup.


#10

[quote=cybmole;2151463]interesting -

I rip & store anything expensive/out of print/ hard to replace to at least one hard drive ( more if I’m feeling especially paranoid)

I figure that the rip stage should give a 100% perfect digiatal image , minus the unwanted crap & protections, & that it is during burns that glitches & gremlins can creep in.

also, I do not know the longevity of DVD+R - how old are your oldest backups now & do you ever check that they still work OK ?[/quote]My oldest backups were done in 2004 on various crap SL blanks and still play fine. The HDD I had at the time is toast. I store the backups away from light in a controlled (70F) environment.
//EDIT// I agree 100% that some backups are more important than others due to cost/availability/PITA to duplicate issues.


#11

[QUOTE=cybmole;2152036]i would expect a factory pressed DVD to last “forever” while stored inside its case, but a DVD that you burn yourself iuses different technology - written layer could deteriorate over time ( dunno how fast though).

as for scratches & fingermarks, that depends how careful you are - if you grew up with vinyl LPS you quickly learnt how important it was to be careful!

the 2 elements I consider when planning backups are:

1 how much would it cost to replace the original source DVD , and

  1. how long did I spend customising it. If e.g. you spent 2 hours per movie converting to IPOD format you really don’t want to have to go through all of that twice!

I now think of a 3rd point: how long would it take to replace the original e.g. If I can only buy it as an obscure import that’s gonna take 3 weeks to arrive, then I might invest in an extra backup.[/QUOTE]

Agreed.

I have a backup dvd via dvdfab in sleeves for use and origional dvd’s stored away.I usually use single layer and compress when needed but, If theres a dual layer I got to have all the stuff, I do copy to dual layer.