Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc ...

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Tue Feb 19, 2013 2:43 am

BuZz wrote:
thepitt wrote:
BuZz wrote:this doesn't sound accurate - no changes at all were made to mplayer. no changes have been made to mplayer cache. the default video engine changed to dvdplayer though, so maybe you are confusing that ? and this is unlikely related to a cache issue also.
Really? No changes have been made since the transition from XBMC to XBMC4XBOX to mplayer or the system cache settings? I can clearly see you can not longer select > 4MB compared to 16MB. I don't have much time on my hands, but I will try to use XBOX4XBMC again and switch the video player to mplayer (and also compare binaries & settings). I hope it's as simple as switching the "default video engine". Thanks for the reply.
which cache settings are you looking at - the mplayer cache settings are unchanged. the dvvdplayer cache settings have no affect on mplayer (they are also in addition to another cache level that is only configurable from the advanced config).

dvdplayer is slightly slower than mplayer - probably due to quality over speed choices in the newer ffmpeg codebase. using ffmpeg's own mpeg4 codec should do better than xvid though.
The "cache" settings under System -> Cache.

Specifically Video/Audio/DVD cache - Harddisk

4MB is now the max, it could have been set of 16MB before. When set at 8MB (no lower no higher) the encodes in this guide playback without any type of slowdown.

Under Video -> Player

I see no option to change or display what version the build I have currently is using or any way to change. All I see is an option to select an external player. So what is the default player?

I've yet to try XBMC4XBOX yet to see if that option is available. So I do not know what it's using to playback video.

All I know is using XBMC4XBOX makes the videos encoding using this guide unplayable.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by BuZz » Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:56 am

thepitt wrote: The "cache" settings under System -> Cache.

Specifically Video/Audio/DVD cache - Harddisk

4MB is now the max, it could have been set of 16MB before. When set at 8MB (no lower no higher) the encodes in this guide playback without any type of slowdown.

Under Video -> Player

I see no option to change or display what version the build I have currently is using or any way to change. All I see is an option to select an external player. So what is the default player?

I've yet to try XBMC4XBOX yet to see if that option is available. So I do not know what it's using to playback video.

All I know is using XBMC4XBOX makes the videos encoding using this guide unplayable.
I'm a little confused, primarily because you are not giving any specific information regarding versions of software here. you refer to the settings, and then say you've yet to try xbmc4xbox yet ?

the hard disk cache was changed from 16384Kb max to 4096Kb max back in 2005 (- 07-07-2005 changed: Dropped max audio caches and max local disk cache to 4Mb.). 4096Kb was the maximum setting for the HD cache in the 8.10 (atlantis) and 9.04 (babylon) release.

There is no reason you would need a larger cache here either (the hd will easily keep up), I suspect you are getting some details confused. Under Video -> Player on xbmc4xbox the option to change the default player has been there since xbmc4xbox 3.0.1 (was added to source in auguest 2010). you can also choose on a per file basis from the context menu.

if you are using an ancient version of xbmc for the xbox, I cannot give any support for that.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:31 am

BuZz wrote: I'm a little confused, primarily because you are not giving any specific information regarding versions of software here. you refer to the settings, and then say you've yet to try xbmc4xbox yet ?

the hard disk cache was changed from 16384Kb max to 4096Kb max back in 2005 (- 07-07-2005 changed: Dropped max audio caches and max local disk cache to 4Mb.). 4096Kb was the maximum setting for the HD cache in the 8.10 (atlantis) and 9.04 (babylon) release.

There is no reason you would need a larger cache here either (the hd will easily keep up), I suspect you are getting some details confused. Under Video -> Player on xbmc4xbox the option to change the default player has been there since xbmc4xbox 3.0.1 (was added to source in auguest 2010). you can also choose on a per file basis from the context menu.

if you are using an ancient version of xbmc for the xbox, I cannot give any support for that.
I'm using;

XBMC-8.10-FINAL-T3CH-PROPER
XBMC-9.04-BABYLON-FINAL-T3CH
XBMC4XBOX-3.0.1-STABLE
XBMC4XBOX-3.1-STABLE

The reason I posted this warning is because XBMC4XBOX lags so badly with videos converted with this guide during high motion sequences using the suggested bitrate. I decided to finally "try" XBMC4XBOX a couple of days before I wrote the warning, but could not find a solution. Both T3CH releases including the one you say should not include > 4MB video caching includes allowing 16MB to be selected and like I said before 8MB is required to playback these videos. If you run the stock T3CH builds in the list without changing it to 8MB then you get around the same results as XBOX4XBMC gives when trying to playback these MPEG4 (yes they are MPEG4) video files.

I found that when writing my guide using the XVID MPEG4 codec along with AC-3 Audio would allow for the maximum bitrate and audio quality the XBOX could push out at 720p as it cannot handle any other h263 codec with an equal or better audio/video quality nor does x264 work even with very poor quality encodes. I tested video encoding for months and found that using the MP4-XVID Codec @ 3666kbps + AC-3 @ 448kbps in the AVI container worked the best and would also playback on set top DVD players, set top BD-ROM players and video gaming consoles (Wii, PS3, etc ...) without having to re-encode anything.

Now I suddenly go to "test" XBMC4XBOX for the first time to watch a movie and it's not playable in any fashion; so I reverted back to 9.04, played it with 4MB cache and it acted the same as XBOX4XBMC. I then upped the cache to 8MB and it played perfectly fine. I shall try to change the default player the next time I have to mess around with XBOX4XBMC and hope that fixes the issue. Otherwise something has changed for the worse and I will continue to suggest people who want to encode the best quality HD content for XBMC to use an older version.

I shall let you know what happens and thank you for your feedback.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by BuZz » Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:55 am

nothing has changed for the worse really - as I said, ffmpeg library changes are likely to have moved towards quality over speed in some cases (when comparing the ancient mplayer ffmpeg libs against the new dvdplayer ones). the xbox will also work better with encodes done using ffmpeg's mpeg4 codec (in mkv container for best flexibility when transcoding). if you need more than 4mb cache to play back something, it sounds like you are hitting the limits in some scenes. afaik most encoders using xvid are not able to set a ceiling bitrate over a set period as can be done with ffmpeg's mpeg4 codec, which is helpful for scenes that might peak higher on xvid.

Suggesting people run unsupported/old versions of xbmc4xbox here is not going to be very welcome. Instead it would be better to work towards a solution for the current version.

and as I said before, mplayer has not been changed.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:49 am

BuZz wrote:nothing has changed for the worse really - as I said, ffmpeg library changes are likely to have moved towards quality over speed in some cases (when comparing the ancient mplayer ffmpeg libs against the new dvdplayer ones). the xbox will also work better with encodes done using ffmpeg's mpeg4 codec (in mkv container for best flexibility when transcoding). if you need more than 4mb cache to play back something, it sounds like you are hitting the limits in some scenes. afaik most encoders using xvid are not able to set a ceiling bitrate over a set period as can be done with ffmpeg's mpeg4 codec, which is helpful for scenes that might peak higher on xvid.

Suggesting people run unsupported/old versions of xbmc4xbox here is not going to be very welcome. Instead it would be better to work towards a solution for the current version.

and as I said before, mplayer has not been changed.
I agree that having to use an older version to play videos using this process is not going to go over well. I did have time to try XBMC4XBOX again and used mplayer instead of dvdplayer (it's useless for these encodes) and there was a major increase in playback quality. I was wondering where the mplayer settings are stored so I might try to optimize it for playback of these videos.

Also, you mention ffmpeg's mpeg4 codec; yet there are many different types of mpeg4 video (avc, xvid, divx, etc ...). Which do you specifically mean? As for mkv video it's custom to use x.264 which doesn't playback at 480p let alone 720p even when lowering the bitrate from 40->8Mb p/s to 1Mb p/s (which of course is out of the question - you lose quality). I could see sticking a non-x264 video like the mpeg4 h.263 inside the container as you can really put mostly whatever you want into a mkv, but the AVI contained work(ed) just fine in previous builds. I shall update my warning with something more subtle until I have a chance to tweak mplayer.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Thu Feb 21, 2013 1:23 am

BuZz wrote:the xbox will also work better with encodes done using ffmpeg's mpeg4 codec (in mkv container for best flexibility when transcoding). if you need more than 4mb cache to play back something, it sounds like you are hitting the limits in some scenes.
So I found that ffmpeg's mpeg4 codec is the simple level 1 which plays horridly under dvdplayer using the same quality of settings used with these xvid rips. Infact I had to cut it by almost half to make it play correctly and it looked like horse doo doo. I had some spare processor time and encoded videos using each mpeg4 variation supported by XBMC using the 3,666Kb p/s bitrate I use for the videos in my guide and then at 2,000Kb p/s. All were put inside the mkv container and the 3,666 didn't play at all in dvdplayer due to massive lag and played with horrid visual quality using 2,000Kb p/s.

Playback of ffmpeg's mpeg4 encodes using XBMC4XBOX w/dvdplayer SUCKS!

It plays back much worse then MPEG4-XVID/AC3>AVI. Of course, I had determined this before I originally wrote the guide some years ago, but figured I'd let my CPU burn through some encodes to check the see how mpeg4 video worked under XBMC4XBOX.

So that option is out of the window, which brings me back to my original issue - for some reason XBMC before it became XBMC4XBOX using mplayer plays back the XVID-HD encodes perfectly fine and using the same videos XBMC4XBOX using mplayer lags badly during high motion sequences without a bitrate decrease (dvdplayer can't handle XVID-HD in any build of XBMC/XBMC4XBOX).

@buzz - where are the mplayer settings in XBMC4XBOX stored ?

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by BuZz » Thu Feb 21, 2013 1:42 am

Well I don't agree. Perhaps you encoded them differently from me. There are other threads about this you can check for my settings. Mplayer settings are in the same place, just called mplayer cache instead of cache.

btw one advantage to mkv container is it doesn't have the limits of xvid, and you can also transcoder keeping the subtitles etc.

I encode with something like

Code: Select all

ffmpeg -i some_1080p_h264_video.mkv -scodec copy -acodec copy -vcodec mpeg4 -b:v 3000k -maxrate 5000k -bufsize 4096k -s 1280x720 -f matroska -y outfile.mkv
although done automatically via mediatomb, so I can just "play" h264 720p/1280p and transcode in realtime.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:33 pm

BuZz wrote:Well I don't agree. Perhaps you encoded them differently from me. There are other threads about this you can check for my settings. Mplayer settings are in the same place, just called mplayer cache instead of cache.

btw one advantage to mkv container is it doesn't have the limits of xvid, and you can also transcoder keeping the subtitles etc.

I encode with something like

Code: Select all

ffmpeg -i some_1080p_h264_video.mkv -scodec copy -acodec copy -vcodec mpeg4 -b:v 3000k -maxrate 5000k -bufsize 4096k -s 1280x720 -f matroska -y outfile.mkv
although done automatically via mediatomb, so I can just "play" h264 720p/1280p and transcode in realtime.
I agree the MKV is far superior to the AVI container as you can basically attached any type of file you want even if it has nothing to do with the video in question. Having internal non-static sub-titles is like you said a great advantage. However, I do not generally stream anything to the XBOX as I upgraded the HDD to 2TB for a reason. I shall try your encoding settings and get back with you.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Thu Feb 21, 2013 1:41 pm

BuZz wrote:

Code: Select all

ffmpeg -i some_1080p_h264_video.mkv -scodec copy -acodec copy -vcodec mpeg4 -b:v 3000k -maxrate 5000k -bufsize 4096k -s 1280x720 -f matroska -y outfile.mkv
Wow it encoded so fast I failed to realize how much data it was dropping until I watched Grace Park's face from Battlestar Galactica turn from a nice smooth texture to a bunch of frakking blocks! No wonder it plays as it has nothing to render! The output file was so generic and unoptimized it wasn't funny. My guide was made after months of hard work and tweaking various settings of the mpeg4/xvid codec to playback smoothly with the best possible quality on XBMC. I've wasted enough time with this. I shall revert to 9.04 and stay there.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by BuZz » Thu Feb 21, 2013 3:48 pm

thepitt wrote:
BuZz wrote:

Code: Select all

ffmpeg -i some_1080p_h264_video.mkv -scodec copy -acodec copy -vcodec mpeg4 -b:v 3000k -maxrate 5000k -bufsize 4096k -s 1280x720 -f matroska -y outfile.mkv
Wow it encoded so fast I failed to realize how much data it was dropping until I watched Grace Park's face from Battlestar Galactica turn from a nice smooth texture to a bunch of frakking blocks! No wonder it plays as it has nothing to render! The output file was so generic and unoptimized it wasn't funny. My guide was made after months of hard work and tweaking various settings of the mpeg4/xvid codec to playback smoothly with the best possible quality on XBMC. I've wasted enough time with this. I shall revert to 9.04 and stay there.
sounds like you used the wrong version of ffmpeg (ie outdated) and the parameters were not understood correctly (I don't think the encodes are as bad as you are making out - im not saying they look better than XVID, but it works well for me and others who have tried and you can guarantee frames are not dropped by limiting the max bitrate for a period, and it's a quick single pass encode which is great for transcoding).

This is without any tweaking of settings of course - just bitrate limits.

Give some information like ffmpeg version and I'll help rather than the annoying "it sucks" "bunch of frakking blocks" type replies which are unconstructive when I am spending time trying to advise. believe it or not, I actually might know a thing or two about this also, and I'm spending my time here too.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Fri Feb 22, 2013 12:16 am

BuZz wrote:sounds like you used the wrong version of ffmpeg (ie outdated) and the parameters were not understood correctly (I don't think the encodes are as bad as you are making out - im not saying they look better than XVID, but it works well for me and others who have tried and you can guarantee frames are not dropped by limiting the max bitrate for a period, and it's a quick single pass encode which is great for transcoding).

This is without any tweaking of settings of course - just bitrate limits.

Give some information like ffmpeg version and I'll help rather than the annoying "it sucks" "bunch of frakking blocks" type replies which are unconstructive when I am spending time trying to advise. believe it or not, I actually might know a thing or two about this also, and I'm spending my time here too.
I used the latest build and the parameters were exactly as you specified, the per frame quality dropped so it's not a viable option. I personally have no reason to degrade the quality of these encodes further just to allow them to play on the latest builds nor do I want to spend another 2 months trying to come up with a new encoding method. Thanks for "your time", but I am going to have to stick with my last post and just revert back to an older version that is capable of handling the encodes I already have.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by whufclee » Fri Feb 22, 2013 10:12 am

Just out of curiosity, exactly what old build are you using? There used to be a a full T3CH build which I think included a whole load more codecs and stuff didn't there? There were always two choices - a big build and a smaller build, could it be that you're using the big bloated one?

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Sat Feb 23, 2013 6:34 am

whufclee wrote:Just out of curiosity, exactly what old build are you using? There used to be a a full T3CH build which I think included a whole load more codecs and stuff didn't there? There were always two choices - a big build and a smaller build, could it be that you're using the big bloated one?
XBMC-9.04-BABYLON-FINAL-T3CH - 63MB

I wouldn't call the builds that contain extra's "bloated" more like "complete", but I am not using a "bloated" build and the processing of the XVID codec via mplayer is handled the same as it is with XBMC4XBOX no matter how "bloated" the T3CH build is as it's based on mplayer's build not just a pack of codecs. I did notice that encodes that aren't exactly 1280x720 (the ones with the black borders) do seem to play without a fuss under XBMC4XBOX, but the full res ones that did play fine do not any longer.

Bloated or not I will stick with what works. No need to fix something that works just fine.

As for others maybe they can test encodes from this guide under XBMC4XBOX and see how they playback? It's always a possibility there are other contributing factors in play here.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by whufclee » Sat Feb 23, 2013 9:06 pm

Ok thanks for sharing the info on the build number, I was just throwing the idea out there as I have no idea what's wrong. I can't remember when the last change to mplayer was, I check the changelogs regularly and I don't think I can ever remember any changes to the mplayer (at least since I've been checking them and that's been quite a few years!). Very odd.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Fri Mar 01, 2013 6:48 am

BuZz wrote:--
It seems to be an isolated case as as long as you use "mplayer" to play your videos encoding using this guide they work fine. I had a few people test a video and a couple I saw in person. Played fine on their setup, but not mine. The only other variable I could think of was the 2TB HDD and adapter. So I removed them, put a stock 10GB in and got the same results. I'm not sure what is causing my system to act up, but it seems an isolated incident. I've tried swapping chips and using different BIOS to; not that should influence the behaviour of video playback so I assume.

It seems to be an isolated case as as long as you use "mplayer" to play your videos encoding using this guide they work fine.

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Sun May 26, 2013 9:21 pm

Who's guide has the most hits on the forum now!

/bootyshake

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by r3dsk1n » Tue Jun 04, 2013 6:46 am

Why don't you just use handbrake and change the settings?

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Tue Jun 04, 2013 7:02 am

r3dsk1n wrote:Why don't you just use handbrake and change the settings?
Good question! It is because there are issues with the encodes it produces and it lacks the ability to tailor the video to the exact specifications I've found to be the best for XViD-HD playback under XBMC4XBox using MPlayer. Just like XVID4PSP the output format, even though set correctly, doesn't match the exact settings that are required for Mplayer to actually play the video w/sound. Plus the extra encoding settings are for a maximum quality under the given bitrate that the XBOX can handle. I spent over a month working with different programs, containers and settings and StaxRip is by far the most flexible and reasonably user friendly solution to create great looking 720p videos with no slowdown with the best video/sound quality possible under XBMC4Xbox. I'm sure you could do it all by the cmd line using the various programs that StraxRip uses (as it is only a glorified front-end or sorts), but that would take way too long. You'll see when using Handbrake that comparing the pre-encoding settings and the output video file differs and good luck on getting it to produce the correct container headers to actually play the sound (though, I've not used Handbrake since the conception of this guide).

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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by sixties keith » Thu Jun 13, 2013 10:45 am

got the same dropping of frame rate during the high motion scenes and duno why. i followed the guide to the letter and even found an mkv file as i wasent sure if a mp4 hd rip was suitable.

im currently running the 2nd beta version on my xbox but i tried the file on another xbox with the first beta with exactly same results.

My question is if this is really worth it? you spend time finding the sutable mkv rip (if there is one for what your looking for) wait for it to download and spend all day converting it on the computer. really? i just convert all my stuff to xvid (using Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate) maybe not hd but the pic quality is 100% dvdrip and absolutly no droped frames looks even sharper on my other xbox with hd component.
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Re: Convert MKV to XViD-HD (BRRIP) for XBMC, PS3OS, Wii, etc

Post by thepitt » Fri Jun 14, 2013 4:52 pm

sixties keith wrote:got the same dropping of frame rate during the high motion scenes and duno why. i followed the guide to the letter and even found an mkv file as i wasent sure if a mp4 hd rip was suitable.

im currently running the 2nd beta version on my xbox but i tried the file on another xbox with the first beta with exactly same results.

My question is if this is really worth it? you spend time finding the sutable mkv rip (if there is one for what your looking for) wait for it to download and spend all day converting it on the computer. really? i just convert all my stuff to xvid (using Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate) maybe not hd but the pic quality is 100% dvdrip and absolutly no droped frames looks even sharper on my other xbox with hd component.
Hi sixties keith,

I made this guide using XBMC some time back, not XBMC4XBOX. With that said I have been able to play videos using this guide under XBMC4XBOX using "Mplayer" (not the default player). I'm not sure why videos are experiencing frame dropping under your setup, but I do not experience them under; XBMC-8.10-FINAL-T3CH-PROPER & XBMC-9.04-BABYLON-FINAL-T3CH. As for XBMC4XBOX please see the discussion (above) regarding playback issues.

I also use a component cable for 720p video output which is why I wrote this guide as the standard "dvdrip" produced from a source DVD cannot compare with the quality produced using the method in this guide. I can visually see the difference.

You can use any MKV file with this method regardless if the total bitrate is 32,000Kb/ps, 12,000Kb/ps, 2,000Kb/ps or 500Kb/ps. The maximum bitrate (including the audio & video; which is what this guide takes into consideration) is 3,666Kb p/s. What really matters is the resolution of the source video. If you use a DVD Video disc the resolution will be less then 720p regardless of what program you use to convert it to XViD. If the source video is equal to or more then 720p then you will see a major visual difference (get closer to the TV if you need to). Some people swear that there is no difference between 1080p and 720p (regarding the resulution on its own; having nothing to do with the XBOX). :)

However, this doesn't matter if your output video drops frames during playback because the way XBMC address this is to "pause" and "skip" during playback of videos which it cannot handle (using Mplayer) and even "freeze" and/or "crash" the entire system.

As for the source video, I used the MKV container as an example as you can see StaxRip can easily handle a wide variety of video, audio and subtitle containers/formats. You can convert a Bluray disc dirtectly to XViD-HD. Your download time is based on your connection; so I cannot do anything about that nor can I do anything about how long it takes to encode due to that is based on your PC specifications. If your source video is less then 720p and/or has a total bitrate equal to or under 3,600Kb/ps then you need to adjust your video settings per the source video specifications. You don't want to increase anything if it is lower then these settings.

Once the initial template is created, using my setup, I can encode a 3 hour video file (source: 1920x1080, 7.1 DTS-Audio & Sub-Titles) to XViD-HD in under 2 hours or I can use StaxRip to create a DVD Rip in under 30 minutes which play fine under XBMC. Due to issues with XBMC4XBOX (read above) I've stuck to using XBMC-9.04-BABYLON-FINAL-T3CH as my main video player, but have both XBMC-9.04-BABYLON-FINAL-T3CH & XBMC4XBOX on the same XBOX.

Sorry you had problems using this guide. The only thing I can suggest is to make sure you use "Mplayer" for XViD-HD playback, try tweaking settings in XBMC4XBOX for video playback or install XBMC-9.04-BABYLON-FINAL-T3CH and see if that helps.

Is it worth it? For me and some thousand others, yes, totally!

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