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DVD Backup/Ripping Tutorial
Tutorial by James of
Copyright James Nisbet 2004 ~ 2007

First you must install the ASPI layer, this can be found here.

Included is a small program that will tell you if you have the current version, so even if you have ASPI, please download and check anyway.

Second you must install the new XviD codec, this can be found here. Once it is installed you may want to reboot your computer to let everything take effect.

Third you must install DVDx, this can be found here.

Lastly you must 'unlock' the DVD drive, do this by playing the DVD in your drive with any DVD software you have. Personally I use PowerDVD.

Now starts the fun. Open DVDx, select 'File > Open DVD Root'. It will ask you to browse for your DVD root (the .ifo folder on your DVD-ROM drive), which in this case is 'E:\VIDEO_TS'. This may differ from DVD to DVD, so use your common sense. A small window should pop up as shown below – you want to select the longest .ifo file in the list. Select it and click select.

Next is the first configuration window, this is quite detailed, so bear with me. The program chain should be the .ifo you selected in the last screen, and the angle should be left at 1. The audio quality can be lowered to ‘Normal Quality' if you want your movie to rip faster. Other settings should be as shown below except the ‘iDCT' under Misc – this should be a setting that meets your processor's abilities, in my case SSE/3DNow+ as I have an Athlon XP 2500. Once all settings are met, click OK.
Note: If you have limited RAM you should change the ‘Save your DVD drive' size of caching. The more you cache the more you will save your DVD drive from wearing out due to constant use – but too much totally kills your system and background processes.

Next you will get a message saying that you can turn off virtual memory to get more speed. After this message I get an error message saying that DVDx can't authenticate my DVD drive, if you get this just ignore it, as long as you followed all steps above it should work fine.

Next is the output configuration, this is just as detailed as the last, so get ready. Click the Output Settings button on the toolbar as shown below.

Here you should have the Output window like below.

Start by selecting ‘Use Lame' from the dropdown menu under ‘AVI specific' and then clicking the ‘Audio Lame' button next to the menu. You should get a small audio configuration window as shown below.

Bitrate and Quality are really personal preference, if you are looking for a lower file size, then set them to a lower value, personally I am an audiophile, so I set mine extremely high – probably excessively :) - 192kbits should be more than enough. Channel should be stereo. Click OK on this window once you are done. Next is the video codec settings. This is where most people screw everything up, so listen carefully. I'm assuming you installed XviD like I suggested – if so select it from the menu. Next click ‘Pass 1 Settings' and set your settings to mine as shown below excepting the bitrate.

The bitrate is the reason people new to ripping don't get perfect 700mb file sizes like good rippers. Included with XviD is a small calculator, open this (it can be accessed via your start menu). In the ‘Film Length' box type in the length of your movie – this can be found by looking at the DVDx window, in the top little box as shown below.

If for some reason you cannot find this calculator, you may download it here.

Type in the value in the following format: hours.minutes. Next select the audio bitrate you chose earlier from the dropdown menu. From the ‘Final Size' menu select the size you would like your DVD to be outputted to. In my case I have chosen 1400mb, split into two files. I liked this movie, so I wanted a high quality rip – simple as that. If you rip it to 700mb it will still be high quality – just not as high obviously. Don't select anything below 700mb – it will suck. Next select AC3 in the ‘Overhead' section. Note the ‘Avg Bitrate', or copy it to clipboard, 1206 in this case. Click Done when you are finished.

Now, back to the codec configuration with our bitrate. Put the bitrate you just got in the bitrate box. Click OK.

Now we are back at the Output settings window. Leave the ‘Expert Settings', ‘Misc' and ‘Premiere' sections as they are. Under the top right section – ‘Export Settings' change the Resolution to the same as your Input DVD's resolution – this can be found by looking at the top little video box as shown.

Select Medium 4/3 under zoom for a nice screen fit. Select the ‘BiLinear' setting that matches your iDCT settings from earlier. Click the ‘Whole' button next to max frame – this will make sure you rip the entire movie. Click Apply when you are done.

Next you need to select your output directory for the movie to be placed, select a place with more than enough space for your movie and click OK.

You are now ready to rip your first DVD. Click the red ‘Encode' button when you are ready. I suggest you only start ripping when you don't plan on using your computer – as it eats ALL of your resources and does so for more than a few hours. The time it takes to rip depends on your system and the quality you are ripping to.

Have fun.

Please note: This is by no means a guide to illegally rip DVDs to your computer. I do not support illegal ripping of DVDs – all the movies I rip are from DVDs I have purchased, for personal backup purposes only.

If you liked this tutorial please tell a friend.

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