Authoring Hi-Def discs Without a BluRay Burner

This discussion came up at the January NJFCPUG meeting, as I was discussing a job I did for Panasonic at Macworld Expo. Panasonic produced some short form content for the Macworld digital signage with the HMC150 camera. After editing the pieces on my MacBook Pro, we decided to create a disc to play in the Panasonic booth on our Plasma.

There are two methods of creating HD content on a standard dvd burner. One way is to use Compressor and DVD Studio Pro to create what Apple calls HD DVD (not the expired format). This special disc will play from the Apple DVD player or some Toshiba HD DVD players. The second method uses Roxio’s Toast 10 and the Blu-Ray plugin to create a high bit rate disc on standard dvd media that will play on BluRay players in glorious HD. For the Macworld Expo project, I used Toast 10.

I first exported a QT reference movie from FCP. I then used Toast 10 with the Blu-Ray plugin to create a Blu-Ray Video disc. Basically a drag and drop operation.

With a DVD-5, you are limited to 20 minutes of video. I have been told that you can also use a DVD-9 for 40 minutes.

Encoding is not fast. A 23 minute test that I did for this article took 2 hours to encode and another 20 minutes to burn the disc, but the results are stunning.

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