Best way to Back up your original DVD


Well-Known Member
Dec 4, 2008
Chennai, India
Dear all,
We have had some good discussions on this topic but they are buried part of various threads. I think its an important thread as we all love our DVDs and would hate to see one degrade.

Can each of you tell whats the best method you think.

What software is needed?

Whats the process and settings used?

Codecs and container preferred:


1. Easy of use
2. PQ Quality
3. SQ Quality
4. Best Compression
You can use DVD Shrink. its a free software. Though they stopped developing it beyond ver 3.2 its still one of the best to fit a movie from a
dual layer disc to a single layer one. Choose "Main Movie" option to cut
out all the useless extras and the compression ratio remains at a decent

It can also remove region codes and prohibited user options.

Warm Regds
I use DABFAB for backing up original DVDs.'

1.It can coppy full(Exact) DVD,

2.Can copy only movie part(omitting Directors cut etc),

3.It can customise split into 2 Discs(DL dvds can be divided into 2 single l
ayered),even customise full disc(audio also can be selected)

4.It can shrink DL(9) DVDs to regular DVDs(5),

5.It can burn disc too.

6.It can recode DVDs to mobile,ipod,xbox,PS3,PDA etc format too.

7.It can merge too.

It can copy almost any DVD & later you can write as data DVD which works older DVDP too(Onida 7100)I wrote on DL blank DVD also(moserbare).

Other similar software is DVD shrink.
Thanks guys and what would be the best compression Divx,h.264, etc if we want to get the best quality.

Though I didnt try,moserw has suggested Handbrake?Dr Divx is good for Divx conversion.
For best free softwares are-

1.Autogk-can rip in Divx/Xvid 5.1 audio which is decoded by AVR as DD/AC3 surr like actual DVD,but sound Q is not as original.

2.Mediacoder- can do the same(Divx,h.264), ,
it can also extract audio from VCD/DVD to mp3,wma so many aud formats.
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A great thread, thank you very much.

With great information by members, you guys are jewels.


Amazing Fact: The system of democracy was introduced for the very first time about 2500 years ago in Athens, Greece.
I use the following 3 step process :-
1. DVD Fab - This defeats the DVD encryption codes and allows extraction of either the full DVD (exact replica; therefore same size as the original) OR movie only (i.e. no menus, extras, etc; therefore smaller size than the original) with the selected audio stream and subtitle stream for copying to hard disk. Please use the latest 2009 version of DVD Fab because 2008 version cannot defeat latest codes in some new DVDs like Wall-E / Dark Knight, etc.
2. DVD Shrink - Compress the result to fit into a DVD-R SL. Make sure to use the "Analyse DVD" and the "Adaptive Error Compensation" options. This makes the compression process slower than normal but gives significantly better results.
3. NERO - Write the compressed data to a blank disk.
I have used this system for about 50 DVDs with great results.
Found this article useful so posting it. pls comment:

Hack Attack : How to Create aXXo Quality DVD Rips

DVD movies are the best way to pass time while you are at home and have nothing else to do. There are times though when the DVD you rented at the local DVD store has to be returned within 24 hours and you want to watch the movie again and again. In such situations ripping the DVDs is the best way to go.

If you have been a P2P torrents user for any length of time, Im sure youve heard of aXXo. A lot of people are in love with him and his releases on the internet (including me as well). The quality of his rips are always spot on, and many people have asked me to how he creates such wonderful rips at 700mb which is insanely small.

Sometime in the past aXXo had stopped releasing new movies, and many users were angry. Well you cant blame him, because he had his own reasons. The purpose of this Hack Attack though is to reduce your dependency on guys like aXXo.

Its as simple as going to a DVD rental store or site, getting the DVD and creating a perfect 700mb DVD rip for the rest of us to enjoy. You dont need to depend on guys like aXXo anymore.

Without further delay, lets get started with the process, of creating your super small high quality DVD Rip. Here are the tools you will require to get started

* DVD Decrypter
* Auto GK
* K-lite Codec Pack (if you already have a codec pack installed you can leave this one out)

Install the above softwares, just like you would install any other software, and then grab yourself a cup of caffeine before you proceed. I am going to split this guide into two parts. Lets get started with the first part.
PART 1 : Ripping the DVD to your Hard Disk

Ripping DVD

Step 1

Fire up DVD Decrypter. It should like the screenshot above. Insert your DVD in your DVD drive and select the appropriate drive as Source, and a folder on your hard disk as the destination with atleast 3-4GB of free space.

Step 2

As you can see in my screenshot, my DVD doesnt have any region protection, copy protection and RCE protection. It might not be the same with your DVD, and you need to get rid of the protection schemes.

To get rid of the protection schemes, click tools from the menu bar and select settings. The settings dialog should now appear. Now tick the Remove Macrovision Protection check box, this will remove the Macrovision flag of the VOB files on the disc. RCE
Protection Region should be set to the region your drive (or standalone DVD player) has.

You can find the regions below :

* Region 1 - 1: U.S., Canada, U.S. Territories
* Region 2 - Japan, Europe, South Africa, and Middle East (including Egypt)
* Region 3 - Southeast Asia and East Asia (including Hong Kong)
* Region 4 - Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands, Central America, Mexico, South America, and the Caribbean
* Region 5 - Eastern Europe (Former Soviet Union), Indian subcontinent, Africa, North Korea, and Mongolia
* Region 6 - Peoples Republic of China
* Region 7 Reserved
* Region 8 - Special international venues (airplanes, cruise ships, etc.)

See the following screenshot for a clearer picture of what you are supposed to do.

Removing DVD Protection

Step 3

Now that you are done with everything, you are ready to rip the DVD to your disk. Make sure the drive containing your destination folder has enough free space on it. Select all the files on the right column if they arent already selected and hit the Start button as highlighted in the screenshot below.

Ripping DVD

It should complete ripping after a while and you should see something like this

Ripping DVD

Yup that is it, you are done with the first part. Now that you have the ripped files on your disk, you can test them on your media player and when you are satisfied you can eject the DVD. Now lets proceed with part 2 of this guide
Part 2 : Compressing the DVD to AVI format

Compresing DVD

Open up Auto GK. It should like the one shown above. Basically this is where all the action happens. Ill guide you through the process of choosing the best settings through to the last step where you can watch your 700MB rip.

Lets continue then

Step 4

Compresing DVD Compresing DVD

(Click on the screenshots to enlarge)

Locate the input file from the folder you used to store the rips in DVD Decrypter Heres how you select the file. In the Open dialog box, select the details view. The input file that we are going to select is an *.IFO file.

As you can see from my screenshot VTS_00_0.IFO has three .VOB files under it with the maximum size, which means this is the movie were looking for. Select the IFO to proceed.

Now give the output file, whatever name you need to give by clicking the Output file field.

Step 5

Compresing DVD

As you can see from the screenshot above, the program lists the available subtitles and Audio tracks. On my DVD there are no subtitles, and there is only one Audio track, so I will select that.

On most DVDs you have 2 Channel Sound (2ch), Surround Sound (6ch). Id prefer Surround sound over normal 2 channel if available simply because they sound much better.

Now select the Target (Output) Size. I have selected 700MB here. Generally speaking, higher the size you select, the more clearer the picture is on the DVD will be.

Now click Advanced Settings button to show the Advanced Options window as shown.

Compresing DVD

Configure the settings as shown in the Screenshot. Choose XviD over DivX because it gives you higher compression for same quality compared to DivX.

Step 6

Compresing DVD

Now that you have finished configuring everything, just click the Add Job button and the Start button to start the conversion/compression process.

Just grab yourself some coffee, if you have finished the one you took before getting started. The compression process will take quite a while, so you could even have a nice nap meanwhile.

Note : You wont much activity in Auto GK itself. A lot of programs will load including a couple of command prompt windows, do their jobs and exit. This is completely normal so dont bother messing around with anything.
Thats it guys! You have made your first aXXo like DVD Rip!
I salute you, great information.


Amazing Fact: The system of democracy was introduced for the very first time about 2500 years ago in Athens, Greece.
Just wanted to share a couple of things. Some of the s/w mentioned here (I think DVD Shrink for one) basically deals with compressing say a DVD-9 which holds 7.95 GB of data into a DVD-5 which holds 4.34 GB of data. I may be mistaken (will check and get back), but I've used DVD Shrink in the past and that's what it did. The best it can do is compress to 1/3rd the size of a DVD of 4.34 GB which means a DVD of 4.34 GB can hold 3 movies. Now the thing to note here is that compression is done in MPEG-2 i.e. in DVD format and not in MPEG-4 which is Divx format. This means the PQ will be bad or not as good when compared to the same file compressed in MPEG-4. MPEG-4 compression is superior to MPEG-2 so if you're compressing a file to say 700 MB then go with MPEG-4 i.e. Divx and not MPEG-2 i.e. DVD.

Some might want MPEG-2 compression, one of advantages is having a menu system which we have in a DVD, it basically is making your existing DVD smaller in size but using same MPEG-2 which means depending on the level of compression PQ will take a hit. If a 4 GB file is compressed to 2 GB in the same format then its understood the PQ will be 50% less. A Divx/AVI file popped into a DVDP will not show up a menu like a DVD will, it just shows up as the filename and we've to click on the filename to play the movie. For some having a menu system like in a DVD is important and for some (like me) its not important.

If you do not have a Divx player i.e. are still stuck with an old DVDP that only plays DVDs and not Divx then using s/w that compress in MPEG-2 makes sense to backup your DVDs. If you do have a DVDP that plays Divx then go with MPEG-4 compression. Guys with WDTV go with H.264. Standalone DVDP don't handle H.264 just yet, but will very soon so even then backing up in H.264 makes more sense if you're looking to upgrade your DVDP to a Divx 7 certified one.

Hopefully, I did not add to the confusion. Like I said I've used some of these s/w a long time ago. Been using HandBrake for a while now and it does a great job with everything I need so I've not used anything else. Please do correct me if DVD Shrink and the others have been updated.
What are the best setting for h.264 and audio Moser ji. Handbrake took 4 hrs to compress a movie. Is that a typical time?

@MBR - Please no "ji" to me. AFAIK/IMHO only Venkatji qualifies for that title.

I've never had it take that long. In fact a movie is done in 20-25 min max for me. But I use .avi as output. Never tried .mkv as output format.

Coming to settings -
1. Picture settings - Leave as is. Crop is automatic.
2. Video - I use FFmpeg (actually everyone uses either Divx or the open source Xvid codecs which is Divx in reverse), but FFmpeg does a faster job than even Xvid so I use that. You having WDTV should go with H.264. I've not seen any H.264 content or ripped myself to check it out, but by all counts/online reviews its the best as of now. I use FPS same as source. Grayscale encoding is off, 2-pass encoding and turbo first pass are on. Target size I go with 1400 MB (since I do rip in 5.1) and also I get about 3 movies on a single DVD (you should check for your optimum size). 1 GB is fine for most and if ripped in stereo then 700 MB is just perfect as evidenced by aXXo's work.
3. Audio & subtitles - I use AC3 since I rip in 5.1. Subtitles usually none, but always check "Forced Subtitles" so I can understand via subtitles when someone speaks in German or French.

Don't bother with Chaper, Advanced and Query Editor sections.

One thing to note, MPEG-4 compression is superior to MPEG-2 so with lesser file size same PQ can be achieved as in a DVD and that's why Divx became so popular, but to state the obvious the larger the file size the better the quality. I've ripped Transformers in a 1.5 GB file and then in a 2.5 GB file. You can really see the difference between both of them with the 2.5 GB being so much better.
Moser sir :yahoo: ( see I avoided ji)

Thanks for the info. What is the difference bteween AC3 and AAC 6 channel discrete @ 384? My thought is AC3 is direct rip without any encoding so it should be better than AAC 6 channel at 384 correct?

After doing a lot of reading, I found the following setting has been accepted by many as Good for quality rips in H.264. Pls comment

HandBrake • View topic - Post Your "Best Settings" here and Why.

Well, here my hi-setting for films from cable, but also dvd.
This is an updated version of my setting from january 2008.
Most switches are pretty close to the default crf-preset.

Settings for
Mac GUI (Handbrake 0.9.3 rev. 2111)
Source material: (progressive) mpg, DVDs.
Priorities: Good quality and compact file size. Not for iPod and similar divices

Format: mkv
Codecs: AVC/H.264 Video / AAC Audio
HTTP Optimized MP4: off
Framerate: Same as source
Encoder: x264 (h.264 Main)
Constant quality: CRF 5359%, mostly 5456%
Grayscale: off; on for most b/w movies

Picture Settings
Size: anamorphic loose
Crop: Automatic (or Custom, if Automatic fails)
Detelecine: on
Decomb: on
Deinterlace: off
Denoise: depending on the content (mostly Weak or None (DVD), rarely Medium)
Deblock: off Deblocking seems to have positive effect on heavily compressed mpeg, but its painfully slow. Considering the given low quality of heavy compressed source material, its rarely worth the time.

Audio & Subtitles
Audio Tracks: depends
Audio Quality:
Bitrate: 96128, mostly 112
Sample rate: 48
Dynamic Range Compression: (mostly) 1.00-2.00
Subtitles: depends

Reference Frames: 5
Mixed References: on
B-Frames: 5
Direct Prediction: Spatial
Weighted B-Frames: on
Pyramidal B-Frames: on
Motion Estimation Method: Uneven Multi-Hexagon
Motion Estimation Range: 32 to 16
Subpixel Motion Estimation: 9
Analysis: All
8x8 DCT: on
Deblocking: -2, -1, up to 0,0 depending on the film
Trellis: 2 - I know, some people said, trellis 2 is no good for CRF at all, but I found no proofs for this so far; it seems to be required for psy-trellis (see below).
No Fast-P-Skip: off
No DCT-Decimate: off
CABAC Entropy Encoding: on

Additional switches I use:
b-adapt=2; I think this algorithm is better. To verify.
psy-rd=1,1 (experimenting with 1,0.2, 1,0.1); attention with this: according to some sources psy-trellis (the 2nd 1) requires trellis 2. So, if you are using trellis 1 it may be better to turn off psy-trellis (psy-rd=1,0). To verify.

To avoid unnecessary (small) speed losses you can add: no-ssim=1 and no-psnr=1

Some comments:

Encoding speed 813 fps on a MBP 2.4GHz (down to 3-4 fps on my old MacBook ...).

The quality factor I choose depends on the film, the noisiness, and other factors: 53-56% in general; 55-59% for higher quality films to archive. 55% is a good compromise when I'm undecided.
Also dont forget to denoise your TV-stuff (cable etc.). With "weak"often you wont loose much on quality but gain a lot on smaller file size.

Trellis: For higher encoding speed you may set Trellis to Trellis 1 (but see above psy-trellis).
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Thanks for the info. What is the difference bteween AC3 and AAC 6 channel discrete @ 384? My thought is AC3 is direct rip without any encoding so it should be better than AAC 6 channel at 384 correct?

AAC is a higher/more advanced version of MP3 and is better than MP3, but not as good as AC3 which is Dolby Digital. DTS is the best, but not many rip in DTS (and not many DVDs come with DTS). Dolby is the next best thing so go with AC3.

After doing a lot of reading, I found the following setting has been accepted by many as Good for quality rips in H.264. Pls comment

I generally avoid the presets or rather modify them to my preference. Previously we could not specify the file size to be output like we can do today and in those days I would use a Bitrate Calculator to arrive at the file size. Any bitrate from 1800 to 2048 kbps is good. These days I go with 1400 MB per movie as file size, not really sure what's the bitrate in them. I would recommend you too go by file size since that makes it easier when burning DVDs for backup. But like I said anything over 1 GB in MPEG-4 looks good (with 5.1 audio). For stereo aXXo is the best that I've come across and would love to know the s/w and settings used by him/her.

More than anything with time space becomes a constraint and deciding factor. Previously I used to copy the DVD i.e. one movie on one DVD. Then I found DVD Shrink and made 3 movies in one DVD but the PQ was not that good (actually sucked for me personally). Then I came across Divx and 700 MB was great so I could put 6 movies in one DVD. Then I graduated to Home Theater and 700 MB was good for PQ, but stereo sucked for SQ. Now I go with 1400 MB per movie which is good for SQ, PQ and gives me 3 movies per DVD. If I could find a way to fit 5 movies on a single DVD with same PQ and SQ I would go that way. Like I said storage space becomes the deciding factor as you pile up on the external HDDs and DVDs. Really waiting for Blu-Ray to become cheaper, will make life much easier with being able to backup 50 GB on a single DVD.
I've read good things about another s/w StaxRip available at StaxRip | planetdvb. I've not checked it out yet, but it does look promising. Maybe MBR or someone else can give it a try and give us feedback on it.
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