Recording Laserdisc to DVD-R

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ernest, Sep 8, 2002.

  1. Ernest

    Ernest Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 1998
    Messages:
    699
    Likes Received:
    78
    I have just completed recording all the laserdisc I OWN to DVD-R that are not on DVD or are "Flippers". Titles such as OUATI America, OUATI the West, Wyatt Earp, Fall of the Roman Empire and many other titles. I am using a Samsung DVD R3000 recorder.

    The Panasonic and Samsung recorders inlcude "Flexible Recording" that work in conjunction with the program timer. The player will record at the highest "Bit" rate for the programmed time period.

    There is more work involved in recording movies recorded on two laserdisc because like all timers editing is not allowed. The laserdisc movie is first recorded onto a DVD-RAM (re-writeable)at the 4 hour speed. After completion you are now ready to re-record onto DVD-R.

    To begin with the 4 hour recordings were not bad at all, on par with many "letterbox" DVD's. If you are recording titles less than three hours long you don't want to have all that wasted unrecorded space on the DVD. In order to max out the video quality you need to use as much of the DVD recordng surface as allowed.

    Unlike VHS or SHVS, re-recording on DVD-R at a higher bit rate improves upon the original. In each case I set the timer with a 2 - 3 minute buffer and re-recorded the DVD-RAM's to DVD-R.

    To do this requires a DVD player that can play RAM. I was only able to find two players that could read RAM, Panasonic RP82 and 91. I purchased the 82 and use it as my primary player.

    The FR recording function is a great feature and I strongly recommend it based on the excellent results I have expereinced. Overall I have converted over 100 VHS, SVHS and laserdisc titles to DVD-R. I only wish they would have let me convert Final Countdown. I have converted nothing that even resembles that horrible DVD.
     
  2. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2000
    Messages:
    3,210
    Likes Received:
    0
    Is that a Computer recorder or a home AV recoder?
    Sounds like a lot of work but at least it was a success!
    Congrats on your backups
    Grant
     
  3. Ernest

    Ernest Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 1998
    Messages:
    699
    Likes Received:
    78
    Grant I am using an A/V standalone DVD player / recorder. You are correct it was allot of work but worth it to end up with many titles not on DVD and I got rid of all my flippers.
     
  4. Adam Buchsbaum

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 1999
    Messages:
    41
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ernest,

    I'm interested in transferring a lot of my LD's to DVD as well. I have a Pioneer CLD-702 laserdisc player, the Panasonic RP91 DVD player and I'm thinking about getting the Panasonic DMRE30 DVD recorder.

    Could you explain why you first transfer the laserdiscs to DVD-RAM and then to DVD-R instead of straight to DVD-R?

    Also, I read somewhere on this forum that it is better to use the regular RCA video output from the laserdisc player instead of the S-Video. What has been your experience?

    And if you don't mind, could you describe exactly how you transfer your LD's to DVD-Rs (both 1 disc-2 sides & 2 discs-3 or more sides, etc.) Thanks.
     
  5. Ernest

    Ernest Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 1998
    Messages:
    699
    Likes Received:
    78
    Adam:

    It is good you already own the RP91 because that player can read RAM and you will need that feature for more than just recording laserdisc. The current recorders on the market, Philips, Panasonic and Samsung, not sure about Pioneer, record in 1, 2, 3 ,4 hour lengths for Philips and 1, 2, 4, 6 and FR for Panasonic / Samsung.

    It would be ideal if all recorders incorporated 1, 2,21/2, 3,4, 6 and FR recording speeds. They don't so you have to work witin the constraints of FR to achieve the highest recording bit rate. For DVD-R recording you want to fill the disc with the movie.

    There is far to much compression when recording "The Man Who Would Be King" at the three or four hour speeds. The movie length is 2:09. Because the movie is spread over two laserdiscs the only way to record at the lowest compression is to first record at the 4 hour speed and then re-record using FR for the 2:09 length.

    It really works well and you end up with an excellent DVD-R. The picture sharpness is real good, but you can't eliminate the shimmering 3 : 2 pulldown does away with. The DVD-R's recorded with FR will mirror commercial "letterbox" DVD's and in some cases exceed their quality.

    You are making a good choice because the Panasonic E30 is an excellent DVD player / Recorder. The Samsung uses the same chasis, minus the pro scan feature. Since I use the RP 82 as my main player I was not concenred over the lack of pro scanning. Hope I have been helpful and good luck.
     
  6. Mike Brantley

    Mike Brantley Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 1998
    Messages:
    199
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have a question. If your first pass at transfering the LD title is at the four-hour speed, wouldn't that cause an unacceptable compromise in quality because of all the compression? If you then dub that DVD-RAM copy to DVD-R in the FR mode, wouldn't the initial compression artifacts of using the four-hour speed still be present, even if the nest-generation dub used less compression?

    I ask because I have a Panasonic DMR-E20, and I find the four-hour mode to be not good enough for making discs from my LDs, DVDs and satellite TiVo recordings. To make my LD dubs of movies slightly longer than 2 hours, I use FR the whole way, stopping the recording prematurely for side breaks. Or, in the case of Star Wars which is like 121 minutes, I record the first two LDs sides at SP and then use FR to get the last side onto the disc.

    Not sure if I'm doing it the hard way, but I worry about making an initial dub at LP and then copying that to DVD-R in the FR mode.

    I use a large projection screen, so compression artifacts really show up.
     
  7. Ernest

    Ernest Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 1998
    Messages:
    699
    Likes Received:
    78
    Initialy I thought like you that recording at the 4 hour speed and then re-recording at the actual length of the movie using the FR feature would result in sub-par video. Unlike re-recording VHS and SVHS, re-recording DVD at a higher bit rate improves the video quality.

    Why it works is because the video artifacts are not recorded in the DVD itself, but are a compression by-product. As you record at a faster speed you raise the bit rate, and at the same time reduce the compression. As the bit rate raises the picture quality improves by eliminating the artifacts caused by the compression.

    It worked for me I have excellent copies of Once Upon A Time In the West, 1492 Conquest Of Paradise, 55 Days At Peking and many flippers I converted to non-flippers, such as Goodfellas, The Man Who Would Be King, Wild Bunch and many more.

    It was a lot of work and I am glad I finally finished. It was the only way I could figure out how to record the LD's with seamless play, no stops,no flipping, straight playing from beginning to end.
     
  8. Mike Brantley

    Mike Brantley Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 1998
    Messages:
    199
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ernest, I guess I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around this concept. I keep thinking that the final DVD-R can only be encoding a copy of whatever video is fed into it -- in this case a DVD-RAM exhibiting visible compression artifacts -- through the analog inputs.

    But ... I haven't tried this and you have. So I will have to do some experimenting when I get the chance.

    Thanks for the conversation and food for thought.
     
  9. alan halvorson

    alan halvorson Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 1998
    Messages:
    2,009
    Likes Received:
    0
    Would the Pioneer DVR-7000 be a better choice of machine for copying LDs? It's my understanding that recording lengths between 1-6 hours can be selected and the bit rate will be adjusted accordingly.
     
  10. Mike Brantley

    Mike Brantley Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 1998
    Messages:
    199
    Likes Received:
    0
    Alan, I'm not familiar with anything but the Panasonic decks. On those, you can set for 1, 2, 4 and 6 hours, with bit rate adjusted, as well as do a "flex" recording that uses the best bitrate for whatever time interval is given. On my E20, the flex option is only available for timer recordings, but that has been changed (improved) with the E30.
     
  11. Eugene Hsieh

    Eugene Hsieh Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    550
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  12. Mike Brantley

    Mike Brantley Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 1998
    Messages:
    199
    Likes Received:
    0
    Eugene, that makes sense to me and is how I would expect it to work.

    I just haven't found that 4-hour mode to be useful for anything that I've been doing. Others have reported it's good enough for dubbing from VHS source tapes, but I can spot too many compression artifacts when doing this. Size, type and quality of display monitor might have something to do with everyone seeing that mode differently. I'm sticking to XP, SP and FR modes.
     
  13. Eugene Hsieh

    Eugene Hsieh Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    550
    Likes Received:
    0
    With Flexible Recording Mode on the E30 and a 2 hour 22 minute movie:
    1) Set the FR mode recording time on the E30 to 2 hour 23 minutes.
    2) Start recording on the E30 and playback on the LD player at the same time.
    3) When the LD hits the end of the side, hit pause on the E30.
    4) When you've got the next side loaded, unpause the E30.
    5) Repeat as necessary.
    6) Enjoy your new DVD. [​IMG]
    In other words, as some have already mentioned, this $500 recorder does not need the timer for FR mode.
     
  14. DeanR

    DeanR Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2002
    Messages:
    316
    Likes Received:
    2
    Real Name:
    Dean
    In my experiences the 4 hour record mode of the Panny is fine for VHS SP dubs. For all DVD's that don't have copy protection or LD's it is unacceptable to use anything else but the XP,SP or FR speeds.
     
  15. Adam Buchsbaum

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 1999
    Messages:
    41
    Likes Received:
    0
    When recording from LD to DVD-R or from any other video source (ReplayTV, VCR, etc.) to DVD-R, is it better to use the S-Video inputs or the regular RCA composite inputs?
     
  16. CraigL

    CraigL Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2000
    Messages:
    1,863
    Likes Received:
    0
    It has been established that composite is better for almost all laserdisc players as the comb filters in the recorder are most likely better than the one in the player.
     
  17. Lee Bombard

    Lee Bombard Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    167
    Likes Received:
    0
    Real Name:
    Lee
    Hi Adam,

    I've made a number of DVD-R recordings from LaserDiscs and since the LD player I'm using only has a composite out...that's what I've been using. If you stick with either the 1 hour, 2 hour or flexible recording options, you'll get a very nice recording.

    I have the E20 and since it also records on DVD-RAM and you can erase and record over and over with RAM I did an awful lot of experimenting before I got serious with the sometimes costly DVD-R's.

    I'd try some RAM recordings with s-Video and then the same material with composite and compare the two. Your combination of equipment might just slant the deck one way or the other.

    However it works out for you I think you'll be pleased with the results.

    Regards,
    Lee
     
  18. Allan Jayne

    Allan Jayne Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 1998
    Messages:
    2,404
    Likes Received:
    0
    Do you have dot crawl or a discoloration where color patches atop one another meet? If so there is an inferior comb filter in your LD to DVD recording path that will leave that dot crawl forever on your DVD.
    The DVD recorder (or the LD player) needs at least a three line digital comb filter to get crisp horizontal color boundaries and eliminate most if not all of the dot crawl. A 3D filter is even better.
    You may be able to find a high end composite to S-video converter with comb filter (Faroudja VP-100 or Camelot VPS-1) secondhand for under USD 200.
    Video hints:
    http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/video.htm
     

Share This Page