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  • DVD to DivX (XviD) Conversion Guide
    Version 2.5 (24 April 2004)

    View the Printer Friendly Version View the Printer Friendly Version
    Read the French Version Read the French Version

    Introduction DVD DIGEST

    Welcome to the DVD to DivX (and now XviD, which I may generalise it to DivX, since they both share many common features and both came from the same open-source code) conversion guide. The aim of this guide is to give you step-by-step and precise instructions on how to convert your DVD to DivX or XviD.

    This is a newly re-written guide based on the old DVD to DivX using FlasK MPEG guide, found on DivX Digest.

    There are many methods you can use to convert DVDs to DivX/XviD, each with it's own merits and problems, some for beginners, and some for more advanced users. This guide aims to give you instructions for most of the more common methods (currently, only instructions for FlasK MPEG and Xmpeg are available - more guides coming soon).

    This guide divides and generalises some of the fundamental steps in DVD to DivX/XviD conversion, and links to much more detailed guides that will give you step-by-step instructions.

    We hope you enjoy this guide.

    P.S: Translated versions of our old guide is still available :



    Index DVD DIGEST
    • Index <= This page
    • Conversion Tool Instructions :



    What's New DVD DIGEST
    • Version 2.5 - 24 April 2004 - Updated guide to reflect newest version of DivX and XviD


    • Version 2.4 - 17 February 2003 - Updated guide to reflect newest version of the DivX Pro codec (5.0.3)


    • Version 2.3 - 20 September 2002 - Instructions for encoding using Gordian Knot added for DivX 3.x and 5.x


    • Version 2.2 - 8 April 2002 - Instructions for encoding to XviD added.


    • Version 2.1 - 1 April 2002 - Instructions for Xmpeg has been added.


    • Version 2.0 - 30 March 2002 - First public version of this completely re-written guide. Contains only instructions for FlasK MPEG, more coming soon. Also contains DivX 3.11 Alpha, DivX 4.x and DivX Pro 5.x instructions. French version also available, special thanks for Laurent Godet for the speedy translation!!


    • Pre Version 2.0 - Previously known as the DVD to DivX using FlasK MPEG guide.



    What are the common steps involved ? DVD DIGEST
      Before you start, you should have at least the following software titles installed :
      • Microsoft Media Player - 6.4 is preferred over version 7.0 - needed for playing back DivX/XviD movies
      • MP3 Codec - for audio compression
      • Download and install one of the following codecs, depending on which one you want :

        Codec : Pros : Cons :
        DivX 3.11 Alpha + Scene Detect Patch
      • Good quality/file size
      • Can exist along with DivX 4.x/5.x
      • Not open-source
      • Not 100% legal
      • No 2-pass encoding
      • DivX 4.x
      • Completely legal
      • Good quality
      • Not open-source
      • File size may be issue
      • No longer supported by DivX.com
      • Can't exist along with DivX 5.x
      • DivX Pro 5.x
      • Completely legal
      • Good quality/file size
      • Supports advanced MPEG-4 features such as B-Frames, Qpel, GMC
      • Not open-source
      • Can't exist along with DivX 4.x
      • DivX Pro 6.x
      • Completely legal
      • Good quality/file size
      • Supports advanced MPEG-4 features such as B-Frames, Qpel, GMC
      • Advanced interactive features such as multiple audio, subtitles
      • Same principles and technology as DivX 5, so a smooth upgrade path
      • Not open-source
      • Advanced interactive features requires special player
      • XviD
      • Completely legal and open-source
      • Supports advanced MPEG-4 features such as B-Frames, Qpel, GMC
      • Good quality/file size
      • Allows you to set the final file size of the movie, as opposed to just a bitrate
      • Still under development
      • Not as well known as DivX


      1. Ripping - DVDs are encrypted and cannot be read/copied/converted without first decrypting this. While some DVD to DivX/XviD conversion tools have built in decrypters, it is always recommended to first decrypt and copy the files to your hard-drive (this step is called Ripping), and then convert it from there. This is because the time it takes to convert a DVD may range from 3-5 hours to over 10 hours, and trust me, you do not want to have your DVD-ROM drive constantly accessed for 10 hours :)

      2. Parsing - The next step involves reading the DVD files, or otherwise known as parsing. Basically, the conversion tool has to know how to "playback" the DVD file, before it can convert it. The information required to parse a DVD is stored in the .ifo files on the DVD. Things such as multiple subtitles, languages and angles, are all stored in these .ifo files, so it is important that you have ripped them in the previous step.

      3. Conversion tool setup - This is where you setup things like cropping (removing the black bars in a widescreen DVD movie, so that they are not converted along with the picture - these black bars will be put back automatically when you playback a widescreen AVI/DivX/XviD file), audio normalization (eg. to increase volume) and output file location.

      4. Codec setup (first pass) - This is where you setup the actual settings for the codec (and any audio codec settings that may be needed), which determines the final quality of the movie. Note that some conversion tools integrate this step with the previous one (Conversion tool setup). If you want to use 2-pass encoding, here is where you setup the first pass settings.

      5. Waiting - This is the most boring part of the whole process - you'll now have to wait for DVD to be converted. This could be 2-3 hours, or 10-20 hours, depending on your system specs. If you chose 2-pass encoding, the first pass will be encoded right here.

      6. Optional - Codec setup (second pass) - If you want to use 2-pass encoding, here is where you setup the second pass settings.

      7. Optional - Waiting - If you chose 2-pass encoding, the second pass will be encoded right here.

      8. Post Processing - Depending on which conversion tool you use, there may be some things that you will need to do before that AVI file is perfect. Things like increasing audio volume, adding AVI tags, fixing audio synch problems are done here, although most are purely optional.

      Summary :
      One pass encoding :
      1. Rip the DVD
      2. Open the DVD in your conversion tool
      3. Setup the conversion tool
      4. Setup the video and any other codecs
      5. Wait for encoding
      6. Post processing on the AVI file


      Two pass encoding :
      1. Rip the DVD
      2. Open the DVD in your conversion tool
      3. Setup the conversion tool
      4. Setup the video codec for first pass
      5. Wait for first pass encoding
      6. Setup the video codec for second pass and any audio codecs
      7. Wait for second pass encoding
      8. Post processing on the AVI file



    Which conversion tool do I use ? DVD DIGEST
      Choosing the right conversion tool/method is probably the most important step in DVD to DivX/XviD conversion. Below is a table of the conversion tools, and their pros and cons (note : only instructions for FlasK MPEG and Xmpeg are available at this time - more will be coming soon). Click on the name of the conversion tool for instructions on how to use it to convert DVDs to DivX/XviD :

      Conversion Tool : Pros : Cons :
      AutoGK
    • Extremely easy to use - designed for beginners
    • All in one conversion tool
    • Relatively fast
    • Can handle XviD and DivX encoding
    • Supports CBR/VBR MP3, AC3
    • Limited configurability
    • Will run into trouble for difficult to convert DVDs
    • Currently Beta, so bugs may be present with DivX encoding
    • DVDtoOgm
    • Easy to use - similar to Gordian Knot
    • All in one conversion tool
    • Relatively fast
    • Can handle XviD and DivX encoding
    • Supports CBR/VBR MP3, AC3
    • Supports advanced Ogm features, such as multiple audio tracks, subtitle support, chapters support ...
    • Converts to the less used Ogm format instead of AVI
    • Current Alpha, so bugs may be present
    • FlasK MPEG
    • Easy to use
    • Contains bugs - doesn't work with all DVD titles
    • Slow
    • Can't decode PCM DVD titles
    • Gordian Knot
    • Easy to use
    • All in one conversion tool
    • Relatively fast
    • Can handle multi-pass automatically
    • Supports CBR/VBR MP3, AC3
    • Can be hard to get the grips of initially
    • Xmpeg
    • Easy to use
    • Relatively fast (compared to FlasK MPEG)
    • Can automatically decrypt and convert directly from DVD (when using Xmpeg DVD MISM)
    • Can handle 2-pass automatically (no need to stop and change codec setting for 2nd pass)
    • Contains bugs - doesn't work with all DVD titles and can crash








    "The DVD to DivX (XviD) Conversion Guide", the name and content is owned by Digital Digest. Duplication of links or content is strictly prohibited. (C) DIGITAL DIGEST - 2000-2004