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Encoder Settings

And finally we get to the video encoder settings. This is the most critical part. If you don't get these settings just right you could find yourself wasting many hours encoding a file you can't put on a disc.


To open the x264 settings, click the Config button.






The most important thing is to select AVCHD for Target Playback Device. You could select Blu-ray instead, but since we're dealing with standard definition video AVCHD is better.


Next you will need to decide between Constant Quality and Bitrate based encoding. By now you should already have decided which one to use. As a general rule, if I calculate the bitrate to be more than about 2500kbps I at least try Constant Quality encoding to see how big it turns out. For Quality based encoding, I normally use a setting between 16 and 20.


Next you should set the Preset. The default setting, Medium, balances quality and encoding speed. Move the slider to the right for higher quality and slower encoding. Move it right for lower quality and faster encoding.


If you have certain types of video, you may benefit from adjusting the Tuning setting. If your video is animated, select the Animation tuning. If it has a lot of film grain there's a setting for that as well.


Finally, check the Show Advanced Settings checkbox to access more settings.





On the Frame-Type tab there are a few more options to look at. CABAC is an extra lossless compression step which will improve quality at the cost of slightly slower encoding. I always leave it on, at least for SD sources.


Minimum GOP size should be set to twice your video's framerate. For example, if your video runs at 25fps, set Maximum GOP size to 50. If the framerate is fractional, like 29.97fps, round up to 30 and then double it for a Maximum GOP size of 60. Minimum GOP size may be set to any value that's half or less of the maximum. Technically it's half the maximum plus one. With a GOP size of 60, the maximum value for minimum GOP size would be 31.


Finally there are interlacing settings. If your video is from a film source and It's from a North American DVD, you generally need to select 32 for Pulldown. If it's actually interlaced, leave Pulldown off and select either TFF or BFF for Interlaced mode. TFF means Top Field First and BFF means Bottom Field First. The AviSynth Script Creator should have shown you the right settings for this if your video is interlaced.





On the Analysis tab, Enable Blu-ray Compatibility must be checked. If your video is progressive, Fake Interlaced must be.





On the final tab, Misc, check the box next to Use qp file to load the file you created from the DVD's chapters. Also select from the last next to Force SAR. For widescreen NTSC, the proper SAR is 40:33. For NTSC full frame it's 10:11. For PAL video, the SAR should be 16:11 for widescreen and 12:11 for full frame.




The last step, which is optional, is to save your settings as a preset. If nothing else, you can save a separate preset every time you encode something so you can double check your settings later if there are problems. Just click the New button at the bottom of the window and a window will popup asking for a profile name.





Name your profile and click Ok.





Close the encoder settings window and you will find yourself back at the main screen. One last detail before you start encoding. Set File Format to RAWAVC. This will create an elementary MPEG-4 file instead of a MKV or MP4 file. Now you can click the Enqueue button, go to the Queue tab, start the job and wait for your Blu-ray compliant file to finish encoding.




While you're waiting, you might want to check out our guide for authoring Blu-ray discs with EasyBD Lite.



table of contents

  1. 1. Introduction
  2. 2. Create AviSynth script
  3. 3. Chapters and Bitrate
  4. 4. Encoder Settings
Written by: Rich "vurbal" Fiscus
Last updated: 20 June 2011