For sometime now I have been ‘getting around’ to converting my physical DVD library to a complete media centre solution. However, this has always suffered from a lack of resources and disk space. Now I have a 2TB drive arriving on Friday with the ability to daisy chain with my 1TB drive, I am confident it should be able to cope.
So I thought I would put some time and effort into finding a media centre solution for my mac. Now I know there are many out there including the ones which I love, such as XBMC. However, until I get a dedicated media machine, I am opting to use a part time solution.
What better solution then one that’s built in? Yes…That’s right, I am talking about iTunes. Some of you may think I am mad, as I know iTunes is like marmite. But hey, I love it so you chose as you wish.
Now, as you may well know, iTunes prefers MP4’s for it’s ‘Movies’ which means converting all physical media to MP4 files and for this my weapon of choice has to be Handbrake.
Handbrake has a wide range of features, allthough most of which won’t be covered in the post as I would like to just focus on just how easy it is to convert your media.
- Maybe an obvious one, put your media in your PC/Mac’s drive
- Launch Handbrake
- Click on the Source button, and locate your Media
- Don’t select any of the files or TS folders, simply click open
- Now using the selector, chose a destination folder and name for your film
It’s worth noting, although I will be showing you how to import to iTunes you can store this file anywhere
- All the rest of the default settings will be fine for iTunes, so you can click the Start button
- Now, go make yourself a drink or 4 – depending on how long the feature/film is this could take some time.
- Once the conversion has completed, align your folder alongside your iTunes movies folder
- Now highlight the film in Finder, and drag and drop it into your ‘Movies’ window in iTunes.
- iTunes will automatically import all the information it needs, and you should see a small preview of the first clip of the film
- Now press cmd and I to show the info pane, and goto the artwork tab
So far, i’ve not been able to get it to automatically download the artwork, so I tend to download it from Google Images and import it myself.
- You may want to fill in the rest of the meta information and change the title, etc.
Once you are happy, click ok and that’s it, now all you have to do is repeat for all the other DVD’s you own.