Somewhat incomplete DeUHD review (+ tech info for people playing rips)

Hello. I’m currently working on ripping my copy of “T2 Trainspotting” and wanted to make a post. This is a work-in-progress, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to complete it without getting one of the free review licenses. (Let’s not kid ourselves. 199 € is a lot of money. Until some more titles get added, I’m not sure I can justify shelling out the money. Fingers crossed that my private request is fulfilled!)

First off, my system is a circa-2010, hand-built HTPC. I can look up all the exact specs later but it was a middle-of-the-road PC when I built it. In other words, other than the drive, this system is, in no way, ready to play UHD discs using PowerDVD/SGX. In even more words, yes, it looks like this software works as long as your system’s on Win10 and you have an appropriate drive. I can’t comment on whether or not this will work on Win7/Win8/Win8.1 but I’m sure others will.

Now then, I have a WH16NS60 in a NexStar DX USB 3.0 enclosure. (I didn’t want to rip the current drive out of my HTPC.) I installed DeUHD and, after wrestling with the password (I don’t think the account allows passwords with special characters, just numbers and letters), I got it set up. I fired up the enclosure and put in the disc. After ~30 s spent reading the disc, DeUHD reported that it could decrypt the disc. I immediately started to rip to a drive. The rip is in-progress. It’s been ~2.5 hrs, with another 2.5 to go. The drive is slow but I don’t know if it’s the software, the usage of USB 3.0 (it’s plugged into a full 3.0 port), or something else.

I’ll report back when the rip is done and let everyone know if the rip (partially) works. My plan is to play the M2TS file in VLC 3.0 (latest nightly build) and see what happens. If it fails, I’ll fall back to VLC 2.2.6 and try on that one. I’ll also give MPC/madVR a try once I have the time to sift through all that and figure out how to set it all up.

As others have said, I’m pretty sure a decrypted version isn’t being downloaded. I’ve been tinkering with my network connection here and there, and checking things on my router. The drive just keeps on chugging. A network connection is definitely required for account registration, and probably to download keys from the server and check the DeUHD license. Otherwise, users should be in the clear.

Is DeUHD perfect? Of course not. But, if others recall, CSS took ~3 years to defeat, and AACS (HD-DVDs and Blu-Rays) about a year, with a few extra months for BD+ once it was out in the wild. Even the first Wii backup tools, as I recall, spent hours hammering away at the disc in order to make a backup, with much saner tools coming along later. I have full confidence that DeUHD will improve and that AACS 2.0 will be fully cracked eventually. Until then, people wishing to make backups will have to have patience.


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Hello. As expected, it took ~5 hours for the disc to rip. Not ideal but I’m sure it’ll improve one way or another in the future.

Does the rip work? Apparently so. I’ve been having some issues but they may be related to the fact that this is a trial rip. Here’s what I saw.

MakeMKV - It kept insisting that I had third-party software active, and that it needed to be stopped. That makes me wonder if DeUHD has some background process running even when DeUHD is stopped. Anyway, MakeMKV failed.
VLC 3.0 (Oct. 4 build) - Had some issues playing the 00001.m2ts file (the main movie) on Windows. It’s a nightly build so there’s no reason to panic. The file played on my Mac, although it was having trouble keeping up.
PowerDVD 14 (non-UHD version) - Played the M2TS file here. PowerDVD played the file for a little while and understood that the video was HEVC/H.265. Because my graphics card doesn’t do H.265 decoding, the dual-core CPU got crushed whenever there was significant movement. (Again, this CPU is seven years old and was middle-of-the-line at the time.) I’m guessing the files will play fine on older equipment if you upgrade your graphics card to one with built-in H.265 decoding, or a reasonably beefy quad-core CPU.

Until I get a license, this is about as far as I can go with the review. I really want DeUHD to succeed! I just can’t give a full review until I can do a complete rip. The results so far are tantalizing.

Good luck!

EDIT: I went ahead and ordered a GT 1030 graphics card. ($75 for one last HTPC upgrade isn’t bad.) I fully anticipate the card allowing older HTPCs to play UHD rips and MKV files. I’ll confirm when I can, if I can.

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Oct. 9 update: I installed my new GT 1030 graphics card today and wanted to report back, mainly as a way for people to get a feel for whether or not their systems can handle 4K rips. The good news is that those with older hardware do have a shot at full 4K goodness.

First, for reference, here’s my system. The only specs are the ones that, IMO, are directly related to the system’s ability to play rips.

Intel i5-661 3.33 GHz processor (Clarkdale, dual core)
8 GB DDR3-1333 RAM
MSI motherboard with Intel P55 chipset
LG WH16NS60 UHD drive in a NexStar DX USB 3.0 external enclosure, and connected via a USB 3.0 port
EVGA graphics card (low profile, heat sink only) with Nvidia GT 1030 design and 2 GB RAM
Samsung SSD drive
Gigabit Ethernet connection to a Synology NAS that holds the rips
Windows 10 (fully updated)
4K HDTV display w/ HDR10 & Dolby Vision support

Was I able to play the rips? Yes, but only after I upgraded my graphics card from the original card GTX 460. Before that, the CPU would be overwhelmed by the decoding and would cause heavy stuttering. With the GT 1030, the video is silky smooth for the most part. I loaded up “Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk” as a test since it’s 4K @ 60fps. GPU-Z shows that the GT 1030 works hard but still has some headspace (~70-75% GPU usage). VLC shows ~10% CPU usage and ~225 MB of RAM. The video for BLLHW seemed slightly jerky but I can’t tell if that’s an issue inherent in the source material or if it is an issue with my rig.

Regarding SSD/Ethernet/etc., it’s okay to serve files on a plain hard drive, although you may want to spring for one with a faster read speed to be safe. In addition, I wouldn’t recommend serving files wirelessly, at least not unless you have an 802.11ac setup that’s rock solid and consistently fast. On paper, the maximum bitrate for UHD-BD is 108 or 128 Mbps (dual or triple layer), or 13.5 or 16 MB/s, which isn’t much. In practice, at least with some computers, the drivers find ways to choke even when the router is next to the computer. Even BD rips can choke on my Mac’s wireless setup, although that might have to do with the laptop, which is first gen 802.11ac and has always been a bit touchy.

Regarding the rest of the specs, based off VLC 3.0 memory usage, I suspect that 4 GB RAM would be a minimum on a PC but I’d recommend 8 GB to be safe. The CPU depends on whether or not there’s a GPU with HEVC decoding. (I believe this is true for Kaby Lake processors and know it’s true for Coffee Lake.) No matter what, you must have either a beefy CPU or a reasonably beefy GPU card in order to play rips. If using a GPU for HW decoding of the HEVC Main 10 profile (i.e., UHD BDs), I believe you’ll need the following.

Intel: Kaby Lake refresh or Coffee Lake (Skylake can only handle the HEVC Main profile, and not Main 10)
Nvidia: GTX 750 SE (supposedly an OEM-only card), GTX 950, GTX 960, or any 1000-series or Titan card
AMD: Radeon R400 series or higher card (R400 series must have UVD 6.3 or higher)

I can’t comment on Linux. I assume that if the GPU drivers support HEVC decoding, you’re good to go, although you may have to play with settings to get the full 10-bit color. Somebody else will have to figure out the Linux setup. I also can’t speak fully to Macs. I assume any Mac with a Kaby Lake processor has full support for HEVC Main 10 decoding, but again, getting 10-bit color might be an issue.

In case anybody here is curious, do not install the UHD version of PowerDVD 14 on your computer unless you have a fully supported rig. The original version of PowerDVD 14 was happy to play HEVC video from MKVs, even 4K discs. The UHD version seems to shut down all HEVC video unless you have a completely controlled path (i.e., SGX and such). Even standard-def HEVC video I made from some old LaserDisc transfers won’t play on the new version. Very annoying, but thankfully, there are programs that happily play these files with the SGX nonsense.

Finally, there are other variables not discussed here, like the fact that my motherboard uses PCI Express 2.0 and not 3.0 (the latter can handle a bit more data). Things are going to be a bit bumpy for awhile. If you’re on the borderline with your gear, upgrade what you can and start saving your pennies for a better system if at all possible.

Good luck!

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