This isn’t about the DVDs I mentioned earlier, rather making my own DVDs of material that I recorded from the TV. I really wish there was some (free) way to say, “Ok I’ve recorded this material in mpeg2 format, let me just burn it right to a DVD+R and it’ll play on the DVD player.” In fact, I’m sure there is something that will allow this exact thing to happen; but I just haven’t found it yet even though I am a whiz usually at finding stuff out there.

Right now the process that I have to go through is this –

Step 1. Record TV show using USB Tuner card into MPEG2 format. (Time: Length of the program)
Step 2. Edit the file to cut commercials and overlap. (Time: about 5-15 minutes, depending upon how many breaks there are)
Step 3. Re-encode the MPEG2 video into XviD using either Auto GordianKnot or Staxrip. (Time: Anywhere from 1.5 to 2+ times the length of the original program; time could theoretically be saved by using a one-pass encode, but I usually encode to a specific file size)
Step 4. Convert XviD video file back to a DVD compatible format using avi2dvd. This includes going through the source file to find potential chapters and create a menu card. (Time: For the 90-ish minutes of video that I did today, it took 6:54:29, ending just as the final installment of the show I had been recording was starting. The vast majority of this time (6 hours 27 minutes 44 seconds) was taken up re-encoding the video)
Step 5. Burn the disc image to a blank DVD. (Time: About 7 minutes)
Step 6. Enjoy the fruits of the computer’s labour. 🙂

I’m sure there are other DVD programs that can do this in a quicker timeframe than 7 hours, and I could have sped the process up a little bit by not using the computer for other things whilst it was encoding the video, as the second pass was done a little bit quicker than the first pass.

Anyway, it’ll save $150 or so; that’s the pledge that the public TV station who produced the program are requesting for the DVD set, admittedly, it’ll be more flash than mine, but it’s nice to be able to something like this for yourself.