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GNU/Linux Desktop Survival Guide
by Graham Williams

AcidRip: Simple GUI for DVD to AVI

AcidRip presents a clean Gnome GUI for converting a DVD directly to an avi file (without temporary copies of the DVD). Generally, creating a 1GB file for every hour of video produces a good quality backup. If you specify more than a single file then Acidrip will split at chapter breaks (but you can also, later on, use avisplit to split a video into smaller chunks, and avimerge to combine video clips--see Section 98.3). Have a look at the Queue tab of acidrip for the mencode command line that is generated and run.

Figure 28.1: The AcidRip interface for converting a DVD to AVI, showing a sample DVD with the longest title selected and File size reset to 1700.
Image acidrip-general

In short:

  1. Startup acidrip and it will read the DVD and select the longest title--be patient and pay attention to the status bar at the bottom since it may take a few seconds while it determines information about the DVD;
  2. Change the Track title if you like (this is used as the filename stem - the %T);
  3. Choose the File size and # Files. Perhaps 1000 for each hour of video to get a reasonable Bits/Px (about 0.2) on the Video tab;
  4. Set Info to name the movie;
  5. Select a Subtitle if desired;
  6. On the Video tab, click the Detect button for cropping to the correct size;
  7. On the Video tab, check that the Scale option is off so that you get the original size;
  8. On the Preview tab you can choose to watch a bit of a preview of the resulting movie;
  9. When you are ready, click the Start button and over the next few hours the work will be done. Note that the main window collapses to a progress window while the work is being done.

There is a bit of a strange interaction between setting the number of files and the file size, and the Bits/Px value. Bits/Px changes if you change the 700 to 1400 with 1 file. But change 1 file to 2 files at 700 and the Bits/Px do not seem to change? Should be the same as 1400 by 1 file, and it is if you change the 1400 back to 700 and 2 files!

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