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DVD/Blu Ray to Mass Storage Device for TV playback (1 Viewer)

socker_dad

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Roy Ware
I've been trying to rip my 1,000+ dvd/blu ray collection to a mass storage device for quite a while (I keep stopping & restarting because of ripping quality, audio/picture track mismatch, etc.). I've been trying to use a 15 TB thumb drive as the destination and VideoByte BD-DVD Ripper as the conversion software. However, I am not having much success with either.

Here is what I would like to achieve:
  • I want a mass storage device that will hold the dvd/blu ray collection and connect to the television for playback.
  • A user-friendly interface (on the television screen? Is that possible?) so my wife can easily find and play movies.
  • The copied/ripped movies to be in high quality sound & picture - hopefully, I won't be able to tell the difference between the original disc and the stored version.
  • The root menu options of the original discs are not that important. They are a nice-to-have, but not a deal breaker.
What do you folks recommend?
 

HarleyDog

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You will want the Plex app to display and access your collection on your television. If you have a smart tv you can download the app. There is a free version and also a pay version that has more bells and whistles. I have the paid version but can't really recall what sets it apart from the free one. Others on this site can probably give you more information. I love the app and it is super easy to use. It connects to my media server and when I open up the app I have a visual view of my library that I can browse through. I should add that when I uploaded my ripped discs to the server I also went out and found images of the original posters that I also uploaded. Having control over what image to display eliminates the angst over poorly designed covers and artwork that I see on many disc cases, as well. To date, I have uploaded over 1,300 discs to my server and still have a large number to go. It can be very time-consuming to go through the whole process but it's just one more part of my video obsession hobby. One bonus is that I find I have rediscovered movies in my collection that have been sitting unnoticed in cabinets for years. It's so much easier to browse through the app then search through cabinet drawers trying to find something to watch.

I use MakeMKV to rip my discs but there are a multitude of free and paid programs out there that others may have a better recommendation for. I always rip to the MKV format which takes more space but produces an identical copy of the original file.

Good luck!

One last thing. I'm not sure if discussing the ripping of discs is a violation of any rules on the forum. If so, my apologies and please feel free to delete/edit my post.
 
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Will Krupp

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  • I want a mass storage device that will hold the dvd/blu ray collection and connect to the television for playback.
  • A user-friendly interface (on the television screen? Is that possible?) so my wife can easily find and play movies.

Welcome to the Forum, Roy!

I use external hard drives and can connect them to the USB ports on either my OLED TV or my Sony 4k player. You then just have to choose the USB as an input on your preferred device and voila, you get a user friendly interface on either. I personally prefer using the blu-ray player as a source because, doing so, I have more control over the playback features with that remote. In that case, the hard drive acts like a blu-ray/DVD.

The Plex server, as Dennis mentioned, is also a good option. A local storage device, however, does have the advantage of not being tied to your internet connection, so you can still have something to watch should it ever go down.

One potential disadvantage of an external hard drive is that there is a risk of failure over time. If you're planning that route, I would personally recommend you go smaller than 15TB and use multiple 3TB or 4TB drives, maybe sorted by genre or date so that your wife can easily locate the one she wants. That way, if one fails after some years, you won't lose everything in one swoop and will just have to recreate the one that is damaged.

I hope that helps and I hope that you find something here that works for you!
 

smithbrad

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I use Plex as well. I bought a Synology box to be my Plex server and then use the Plex app on smart TV's to create the link for playback. I also use an Apple 4K TV device to link Plex to playback on my projector. There is extra work to setup a Plex server. Besides a standalone box like Synology you can also use an old computer. The Plex interface is much like using a streaming site except it is just your media. It is very easy to navigate. As Will stated a drawback is needing an internet connection for it to work, but a benefit is that once setup you are good to go on all Smart TV's connected.

TB drives keep getting cheaper. I store a lot of TV, as well as movies. I have several 5TB drives, then added several 8TB drives, now I just purchased a 15TB drive from Costco for $150 during a sale. Once extracting all the movies/TV shows, I would recommend buying another 15TB drive to use as a backup. You won't want to go through that exercise a second time.

Ripping to MKV is the best option for quality since as stated above, it is an exact copy. It should also typically rip quicker since it doesn't need to re-encode, but it will be a bigger size. MakeMKV is probably the most popular option in that regard.
 

HarleyDog

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Once extracting all the movies/TV shows, I would recommend buying another 15TB drive to use as a backup. You won't want to go through that exercise a second time.
This. I make sure to backup all my files in case of drive failure. Also, I have gotten rid of a number of discs (that don't have any special features I want to keep) that I have ripped in order to clear up space. Keeping a backup file helps insure I don't lose those films.
 

Josh Steinberg

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As Will stated a drawback is needing an internet connection for it to work

If you’re only streaming within your house, you don’t even need the internet connection once it’s set up, you only need your local home access (whether wired or WiFi) to work. On the rare occasions I’ve lost internet but not electricity (frankly I’ve lost electricity more often than internet), my Plex server has had no problem streaming within devices in my home connected to the WiFi network.
 

smithbrad

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If you’re only streaming within your house, you don’t even need the internet connection once it’s set up, you only need your local home access (whether wired or WiFi) to work. On the rare occasions I’ve lost internet but not electricity (frankly I’ve lost electricity more often than internet), my Plex server has had no problem streaming within devices in my home connected to the WiFi network.
Good to know. I've not had an opportunity to try this, so I assumed I'd be out of luck.
 

Josh Steinberg

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Good to know. I've not had an opportunity to try this, so I assumed I'd be out of luck.

Hopefully you won’t have to :) but if you do, you won’t be able to add new metadata downloaded from the internet if you add a new disc to your library while the internet is down but you can certainly play what you have on hand.

We recently moved and the internet was shut off at the old house a day before we left and the Plex server kept the kids entertained when they couldn’t stream their regular kids shows, it was super helpful.
 

dpippel

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If you’re only streaming within your house, you don’t even need the internet connection once it’s set up, you only need your local home access (whether wired or WiFi) to work. On the rare occasions I’ve lost internet but not electricity (frankly I’ve lost electricity more often than internet), my Plex server has had no problem streaming within devices in my home connected to the WiFi network
Well, that depends. If you want Plex (or whatever solution you're using) to download the metadata for all of your ripped media locally, you do need an internet connection.
 

Josh Steinberg

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Well, that depends. If you want Plex (or whatever solution you're using) to download the metadata for all of your ripped media locally, you do need an internet connection.

Yes of course but what I’m trying to say is that if you lose your internet connection for a couple hours, your existing library is still accessible on your local network during that time.
 

JohnRice

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I'll just toss in my two cents...

I use two different methods, depending on my priorities. I'm Apple/Mac based, and for TV shows on disc, where I'm not concerned about ultimate video quality, I rip them with MakeMKV, compress them with Handbrake, and then load them up on a computer connected 14TB drive through the AppleTV app. It used to be done with iTunes. Then I have AppleTV streamers on each TV and can play them back, and it remembers where I am in each series. I also do that with movies where I'm not concerned with ultimate video quality or HD audio.

Then I have an SSD connected to a UHD player in my HT, where I store uncompressed HD (they could also be UHD, but I don't have the hardware to rip those) movies that I want in full, uncompressed video and audio. I mostly use that for easy playback of BRs from other regions. It's a lot easier than messing with a region free player.

If I have something on disc, then I generally watch it on disc, or redeem the code (if it has one) and stream that way.

For me, the idea of ripping everything seems nice, but it's not practical and a lot more work and cost than it's worth.
 

Todd Erwin

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The copied/ripped movies to be in high quality sound & picture - hopefully, I won't be able to tell the difference between the original disc and the stored version
That is one of the drawbacks I encountered with PLEX, as most streaming devices do not support lossless audio such as Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA, meaning that if the disc had a Dolby Atmos or DTS:X track, then only the lossy core track (Dolby Digital or DTS) would be accessible. And if you use an Apple TV or Amazon FireTV device, neither of those support any form of DTS.
 

JohnRice

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That is one of the drawbacks I encountered with PLEX, as most streaming devices do not support lossless audio such as Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA, meaning that if the disc had a Dolby Atmos or DTS:X track, then only the lossy core track (Dolby Digital or DTS) would be accessible. And if you use an Apple TV or Amazon FireTV device, neither of those support any form of DTS.
Which is a benefit to storage connected directly to a disc player, or a dedicated media player. You can get playback that is identical to the disc. Of course, it requires a lot of storage. The down side is, you can't share it over a network, as far as I know.
 

Josh Steinberg

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That is one of the drawbacks I encountered with PLEX, as most streaming devices do not support lossless audio such as Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA, meaning that if the disc had a Dolby Atmos or DTS:X track, then only the lossy core track (Dolby Digital or DTS) would be accessible. And if you use an Apple TV or Amazon FireTV device, neither of those support any form of DTS.

Plex compatibly has been improved with AppleTV - it can now play DTS-HD MA and Dolby TrueHD.
 

smithbrad

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I primarily use plex for TV shows I own. I tend to binge a little here, bounce around different shows from time to time, and take little breaks from shows here and there. Remembering where I was across shows was becoming a pain. Plex remembers exactly where I was, and I never have to leave my chair when switching to another show on the same night.
 

socker_dad

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These are great suggestions! I currently have a Phillips flat screen and absolutely hate its interface. It has a USB port, but nothing you rip/copy (in any format) can be played through it. Very user-hostile.

Everything I have is PC/Android-based, so Apple is off the table, so MakeMKV sounds like a great copying tool. No, the ripping is strictly for my backup use - absolutely no intentions of sharing movies. If I had to buy them, you should too!

Based on the suggestions, I am leaning towards the Synology 2-bay DiskStation with 2 Toshiba 10 TB Hard Drives. The Plex app sounds great - I just need to get a flat screen TV that will be compatible to the whole setup!
 

smithbrad

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Based on the suggestions, I am leaning towards the Synology 2-bay DiskStation with 2 Toshiba 10 TB Hard Drives. The Plex app sounds great - I just need to get a flat screen TV that will be compatible to the whole setup!
Or, if you like your current TV, just get a device to handle the app part for you (Roku, Firestick, Apple 4k TV). I ended up with the Apple 4K TV for my projector because I started to run into content in integer-based frame rates (e.g., 24.0 vs 23.976) and the Apple 4K TV supports that. I'm running a Synology DS215j that I got back in 2015. Works great. The other flat screens in the house all support the Plex App directly.
 

Buckshot

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Hey HarleyDog I have a question. I am new to this home theater stuff but I have a good setup. We have about 1800 DVD's that I would love to do this with. I understand using the app on tv and using the MKV to download the dad's to. What I am not sure is how to get them ripped. Do you just use a computer or laptop with the MKVsoftware. What do you do with them next. How do you get them from the computer to the app on the tv. Thanks for the help.
 

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