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I want to start digitizing my DVD collection, and I have used AnyDVD and CloneDVD to rip my DVD's contents to my disk. At the moment all the films look like this on my hard drive:

enter image description here

All I know at this stage is the .vob files hold the actual movie, and I can use the VIDEO_TS.IFO file to play the movie as a whole. But I want to convert these files down to a single, smaller filesize file.

What codec and container would people reccomend for this? I want it to be able to play on my PC without installing anything other than the K-Lite Codec Pack, but still have a decent filesize. Also the frame should be 720 in width, and 576 in height (same as the .VOB files).

I have ffmpeg installed, too.

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

Toolwise - Handbrake is the least painful way to go from .vob to a usable format. I'd suggest going with MP4 for formats - runs on most things these days.

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Handbreake is exactly what I wanted, thank you! I'll convert them to mkv though, as it works on all the devices in my home and I think it has better quality than mp4... i'll see after I play around anyways :) Thanks again. – Joshua Jerome Apr 14 '11 at 1:48
Just for clarification, both mp4 and mkv are just container formats. Handbrake encodes the video using the x264 codec regardless of whether you choose mp4 or mkv. As such, the quality between the two would be identical. – Ryan Bolger Apr 14 '11 at 5:00
HandBrake is a wonderful tool, especially if you want to re-encode the video files (for mobile devices, for example). – basic6 Jul 7 '15 at 10:04

K9Copy is another tool that you can use to read those VIDEO_TS directories and create (re-encode) MPEG-4 video files, which will be smaller in size (but the quality will suffer), or extract MPEG-2 video files (lossless). This may be a better alternative to HandBrake (which is a great tool), especially for lossless backups.

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Is this your software? This reads a bit excessively on the self-promotion side/spam, which is not acceptable. – studiohack Jul 6 '15 at 0:42
@studiohack: No, it is not. What exactly makes you say that and why the downvote? I thought it might be helpful for future readers, as this software is an alternative to HandBrake as it should do what the op is asking for. – basic6 Jul 6 '15 at 7:38
When you post the same answer multiple times in such sales copy written way, that smells like spam – random Jul 7 '15 at 2:27
Well, I'm sorry it looks like spam to you. I just think this is a useful program, so I have posted this recommendation where I think it's appropriate. The op wants to convert DVD video files into (possibly smaller) video files and is asking for recommendations. HandBrake has been mentioned, which is great. K9Copy can do the job as well, so I've mentioned it. I've also reworded my answer. If you still think my recommendation is spam, feel free to delete it. – basic6 Jul 7 '15 at 9:57
@basic6 lots better! +1 and thanks! – studiohack Jul 9 '15 at 20:59

I use handbrake and it does the job very well. Converts straight from DVD to any desired format (by using the video_TS file) and has presets for ipods/iphones etc. Worth a look in!

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