Converting DVDs can be pretty easy nowadays given that we have the means and the "know how" to do it with. I remember when I put my hand on the first DVD. Converting it into the trivial AVI video format seemed like the logical solution as they were pretty expensive back then and ripping them into a more compressed format was the only way I could back them up.
Time went by and my HDDs got larger and larger and the DVDs became cheaper. So ripping them into some other format was not an option anymore. The quality provided by the DVD format is still popular and it will still be for a little longer until BluRay becomes accessible.
#1 DVD Ripper is a $34.95 way to back up your DVD videos to the more convenient and smaller sized AVI or WMV. The interface of the software is fresh and clean cut. Almost every option is in plain view (except for the codec configuration located in Options menu) and neophytes will find the conversion process very easy to complete.
The video formats you can convert the DVD video into are VCD, SVCD, AVI and WMV. The audio tracks available on the DVD are automatically detected, as well as the aspect ratio and the subtitles. The final result includes one audio track and one of the subtitles the user chooses. The resulting file will have the subtitle embedded, so you will have only one file that contains video, audio and subtitles.
Loading the DVD takes just a few seconds and you will be displayed all the titles and chapters available with their duration and aspect ratio. The first window allows the user to choose the desired final format by simply selecting it from the Video Format menu (lower left corner). After all the settings have been made in the first window, don't hurry into clicking the Start blue button in the right lower corner. Take a peek in the Settings menu in order to make your conversion better.
The four tabs awaiting contain options that will up the quality of the output result. The default volume can be set as well as the output framerate. If you do not want the entire movie into a single file (it'll probably be a very large one) you can set the split mode. The subtitles can be adjusted after the first test and if bolding them ensures a better view, then leave
the appropriate box in the General tab unchecked.
A very nice option that can be useful when the DVD you are trying to convert has synchronization issues is Force Synchronization (audio and sound will be synched). Deinterlacing option is also available to make the necessary correction. Usually, using the Interplate option works like a charm and will smoothen the image.
Output tab in the Settings menu is the interesting part of the application. It is here where you get to choose the compression codec (from what is available on your computer) and make the necessary settings like encoding type, encoder, decoder and optimizations. The recommended codecs to work with are DivX (highly recommended for working with AVI format) and its competitor XviD, the best on the market up to now. They are highly flexible and allow lots of settings for quality, size (lower quality will result in a smaller size), number of passes etc.
In order to achieve the best video quality for the output result, the Help file supplies you with some tips on how to increase the video quality: number of passes to use, DVD video standard aspect ratio and cropping, and some details on AVI video quality.The Good
The user has the possibility to experience a very comfortable interface that allows easy configuration of the application. The output result is good enough if you really want to sacrifice the DVD quality.
Highly flexible, the resulting video will have subtitles embedded and you get to choose the audio track (if more than one is available) you want to be included.
Making separate settings (different output formats) is supported and batch converting is no trouble for #1DVD Ripper.The Bad
The price is not one of the software's strong points. $34.95 seems a little too much for an application that can do something less and less people use.The Truth
DVD ripping is on the brink of extinction. HDDs are larger and I cannot imagine a movie addict that does not have a DVD writing unit installed. So ripping them would be a waste of time. On the other hand, if you want to extract only a certain part of the DVD video, #1 DVD Ripper comes in handy as it allows you to convert the video into AVI or WMV.Here are some snapshots of the application in action:Follow the editor on Twitter @ionut_ilascu