[mythtv-users] OT: Editing a MythTV File and Creating a DVD

Brad DerManouelian myth at dermanouelian.com
Fri Sep 15 23:17:59 UTC 2006

On Sep 15, 2006, at 4:00 PM, Douglas Wagner wrote:

> Ok, I must display my complete NOOBness on this topic.
> I'm a tech head and a computer geek.  Ask me to setup a new system  
> and i'm good to go, ask me to install, maintain and configure  
> MythTV, connect the wireing and all the rest, and I can do it  
> blindfolded.
> Get me inside a video file with the various codecs, programs,  
> transcoding and all this jazz and I am HOPELESSLY and I mean wow  
> hopelessly lost.
> So I have 250g of recorded video on my PVR at this point, mostly  
> kids shows.  I'd LOVE to take some of the older episodes off the  
> PVR and get them on DVD that would be playable on any standard/ 
> general DVD player...an added bonus would be getting rid of the  
> commercials, entry music, exit credits, etc.  So in general, the  
> kids shows come in at about 600 meg / 30 minute show (Digital,  
> don't know if this is HD, i'm guessing it's still SD programming  
> due to it's size) So I can fit about 6 - 8 of these (at the  
> standard size without any codec conversions) on one DVD.
> I'd like to be able to take the files, do whatever it is I need to  
> do to them, cut off some of the fronts and backs of the shows,  
> string them together and print the whole thing out to DVD for play  
> on a standard DVD player.
> I don't know how much i'm asking here, but I can tell you that  
> everything I run into makes this simple task seem impossible.   
> Before I start asking questions, I guess I should ask: Is there an  
> idiots howto out there walking simpletons like myself through this  
> stuff?  I'm at the point where I simply don't know what I don't know.
> Ok, questions i've come up with that might or might not apply...
> First, I'm looking for some SIMPLE software to edit video files.   
> I'm not looking for anything spectacular, I don't really need to  
> author my own movies from clips or whatnot, I simply need to take  
> the .mpg files that my MythTV installation is producing, string  
> them together, cut off the extra opening and closing segments from  
> a few of the files and get them "together" in some way.  The  
> problem I find is that pretty much everything I have tried to use  
> (and again, I don't even know where to start looking) is so  
> impossible to figure out or so impossible to use that it makes this  
> entire thing impossible or painful at least.  The second  
> requirement however has got to be cheap.  I'd really prefer not to  
> spend 400$ on a software package that would allow me to re-produce  
> Star Wars in full HD video/audio from pictures of comic books, when  
> all I need to do is 2 minute edits to a few files and get them out  
> to DVD.  Translating between codecs would be nice but again, if it  
> "simply works" that's ok for me too.  I have run across Virtual  
> Dub, but it won't seem to open/manage any of the .mpg files from  
> MythTV that I throw at it.
> Secondly, codecs.  Here again i'm lost.  I'm somewhat sure that the  
> MythTV files are in some sort of Mpeg format as they are recorded  
> for me (i.e. the output is in, I believe, Mpeg 2 format).  What I  
> don't understand is what the native "dvd" format is...is it mpeg?   
> Does it matter?  Is codec only about size?  Again, i'm somewhat  
> lost here.
> Next: I've run across a post talking about getting MythTV to  
> automatically transcode, strip commersials, etc and can follow that  
> fairly well to get some transcoding setup, but is it necessary?  If  
> I do end up transcoding to MPEG-4 (40% decrease in file size from  
> what I understand) would that still be playable on a reguilar DVD  
> player?  Or through MythTV's "Watch Recordings" menu? (I assume I  
> could transcode and move to my stored videos directory to play  
> through the watch video section, but then i'd loose things like  
> playlists and such)  I assume something like DIVX would require a  
> DIVX capable player and it would play the files as DIVX files (akin  
> to playing various video clips on a computer) and not one cohesive  
> movie/show?  Also, if I did do some transcoding on the files, and  
> change the whole set to say Mpeg-4, could I do that "in place" in  
> such a way that I would still have access to all the files through  
> MythTV?
> I'm going to quit here, as you all can probably tell, i'm simply  
> lost..and at this point probably babbling.  Any assistance anyone  
> can provide me would be most appreciated (particularly in the what  
> software package department).  BTW, Linux, Windows, etc. doesn't  
> bother me...i'm happy to work with apps in any of the environments  
> (my burn application - Nero - Is Windows and would be my  
> prefference for how to get the final mastered "video" onto the DVD  
> but if needed I can be flexable on that too.)
> --Douglas Wagner

You'll want to use the new plugin MythArchive for MythTV .20. MythTV  
has allowed simple editing of video files for a long time now. Choose  
Edit Recording then mark your cut points (load your commercial marks  
as cutpoints to help as a starting guide). Then choose MythArchive.  
The wizard walks you through burning a nice DVD (complete with menus,  
chapter marks, etc) of the programs you choose. It will transcode  
your files into a suitable format for a NTSC or PAL DVD. You even get  
to choose the compression profile depending on how much you need to  
fit on the DVD. I was able to do all of this without reading the  
manual once. :) Of course I did look through the wiki after I burned  
my first DVD to see if I was missing something, but nope. I had it  
all down.

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