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Old 23 Jan 2003, 03:39 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Texas
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Question Making anamorphic MPEG/DVD - how?

I am attempting to make an MPEG that I can use to make a DVD. I have captured a 4:3 laserdisc that is letterboxed. It seems like a huge waste of space to include the black bars from the letterboxed source in my MPEG. So, ultimately what I'd like to do is remove the black bars and make an "anamorphic" DVD with the remaining picture area that will play on either a 4:3 or 16:9 TV.

What I have done so far:

1. Captured the LD as an AVI (using DivX at 6mbps as a halfway point) at 720x480.
2. Cropped the letterbox bars out of the AVI with VirtualDub. (OK so far...)
3. Attempted to convert the AVI to MPEG with TMPGEnc (with a variety of settings - I half-way know what I am doing!)

Step 3 is where the problem starts. Some of the settings I have been goofing with are:

-Video -> Aspect ratio (set to 16:9)
-Advanced -> Source aspect ratio (tried 4:3 mostly, now trying 16:9)
-Advanced -> Video arrange Method (tried Center keep aspect ratio, full screen keep aspect ratio, no margin keep aspect ratio)

So, how do I set TMPGEnc to make a DVD-compliant MPEG from that that will be anamorphic?


Other questions/thoughts:

-I am starting with 720x480 lines or resolution. If I crop out the letterbox bars, I am left with an AVI that is 720x276.

-The MPEG has to be 720x480 for DVD, so what I am trying to do is resize it in TMPGEnc to 720x480, using 16x9 format.

-Once I get this to 720x480, how crappy is it going to look?

-What should/can I do about the missing 204 lines of resolution I cropped out (besides grumble)?

-DVD supports 720x480. What is a 4:3 TV? 640x480? What about a 16x9 TV?

-What DVD authoring tool do I need? I have been using Ulead DVD MovieFactory with decent results. I tried DVDit PE and it seemed buggy (saying there wasn't enough room for the project on media, failing to refresh size when I changed settings, etc) - I never got a DVD made with DVDit. Uhh, do both make you specify the aspect ration before you start a project (damn, I may be screwed right there)?



Should I just blow all this off and leave the damn bars in? That's space I could use for a higher bitrate

or something...

Thanks for your suggestions.
keng50@excite.com
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