What to use to view VOBs on TV?

Have backed up my DVDs to external USB drives as VOBs (using DVD Decrypter). Is there a device that can hook to my stereo/TV to play those from my PC?

I had tried the PrismIQ device in the past, but it never worked very good for video. So far, it’s the only thing I’ve seen that would play VOBs.

Any other ideas?


Even some newer standalone dvd players will dothat.

some DVRs have usb ports for external HDDs too, not sure if they would handle VOBs though.

you could also build a cheap media center pc and either stream the video over the network, or run strait from the drives if they are quiet enough

welcome to the forum btw :slight_smile:


when you say media center PC, you mean MS Media Center? I thought it only plays ‘real’ or downloaded content. They don’t mention VOBs.

Maybe a better way to phrase my request is I want to play ripped DVD content directly form the ext. HDs. Maybe VOBs aren’t the way to go. Would be a pain to convert them (if there is such a thing).

do you know of any brands/models or what features I should look for?


Any reason not to just burn them to a DVD and watch that? DVD+/-RW works good for this.

Have tried that, but they sometimes come out choppy, etc. Seems easier to just play VOBs. I do this with my portable/ext. HDs.

Now… it’s been a while since I’ve really got into burning the DVDs and I’m sure a lot has changed. I used to use DVD Xcopy and also tried one from Pinnacle (which worked somewhat better).

Can you recommend a few that are easy to use? Cost not a huge deal.


Reasons for video being choppy are bad (cheap) media, bad input to start with, or improper encoding. What brand of media are you using?


Suggestions are welcome ; )

Give Verbatim a try, good media and good drive compatibility. Most Memorex media is actually decent, however they use a lot of different sources for their media (many different media codes), so burner/firmware support with all of the various media codes is not as good as something such as Verbatim, as well as Verbatim just being better media. Part of it could also depend on the device that you’re playing the discs on, some prefer +R or -R, and some are just very picky with dye-based media in general. For example, I have an older player that skips and stutters with -R media quite a bit, yet it has no problems with +R media. The opposite can also be true with other players though, some older players prefer -R or +R bitset to -ROM.

Sounds good.

I’m going to pick up a copy of DVD neXTcopy and have at it. With my player(s), it looks like I’ll need to do some testing and see what media type works best.

Thanks all for the help. Sorry to go so completely OT by end of thread :bigsmile:

you could use dvd shrink to re-encode to fit on 4.7gb dvds, its free and works well too.


or if you already have nero, you could use recode

Don’t waste your money, use DVD Shrink (or Nero Recode if you have Nero) as jwill mentions.

so to be clear - I use DVD Shrink to tweek the files I need down to 4.7. Then use whatever burn s/w to get it on DVD? (like just burning a data disk?)

Can I use Sonic RecordNow Plus? Any special settings?

thanks again for all the help/suggestions.

I’m not that familiar with RecordNow, but ImgBurn (or DVD Decrypter) is usually the program of choice for burning the output from DVD Shrink. Just select to output as an ISO Image when you click the backup button in DVD Shrink, then you can burn with ImgBurn or DVD Decrypter. ImgBurn is basically just an updated version of DVD Decrypter, except that it cannot decrypt copyright-protected discs.

perfect - I use DVD Decrypt all the time. Had no idea it wrote stuff too.

thanks again


Used DVD Shrink and DVD Decrypter to write and created the best DVD yet. I love free… and lamp. I love lamp.

all hail freaks :bow:

Glad to hear, it’s a popular combination and for good reason. The only thing I’ll add is if you need to backup some of the latest DVDs with newer copyright protection that neither DVD Shrink or DVD Decrypter can handle, try RipIt4Me. It works with DVD Decrypter and FixVTS to automate the fixing of bogus VTS/titles and remove the latest protections, and it does a great job. And to further improve the quality of DVD Shrink-ed discs, enable ‘Deep Analysis’ and turn on the various AEC settings (a brief suggestion is to use ‘sharp’ for lighter compression, use ‘smooth’ for heavier compression). Both Deep Analysis and AEC will mean longer transcoding times and for lighter compression amounts you might not see much improvement, but for heavier compression they will definitely help.

good tips

I did use ‘smooth’ based on a FAQ re: DVD Shrink.

I think it looks/sounds great. I’m not that anal about video quality as some are, so this should be exactly what I need.

thanks again for the help/tips