16:9 Menu?

Avi to DVD and other video conversions, such as wmv to DVD, mts to DVD, mkv to DVD and more. 2 pass encoding, multi-core support, and always more files supported.

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JoeB
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Post by JoeB » Thu Oct 28, 2010 3:14 am

toaddub wrote: One easy way to overcome this dilemma is use the software of your choice to create the menus, whether it's 16:9 or 4:3, because you like its selections better. It does not matter whether the software will reencode the VSO converted files (the drawback for this is a waste of time), lose the subtitle colors and chapter points, you can always get this back using other tools. Simply replace the newly created VOB files with the VSO converted files with VobBlanker (freeware) or DvdReMake Pro (not free).
You say " simply replace..."? My experience since becoming involved in this discussion is that the word "simply" just does not apply to the subject. :-) "Simply", to me, would be a 2 or 3 step operation, and I can't imagine that being the case, although I do stand to be corrected.

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Post by ckhouston » Thu Oct 28, 2010 4:43 am

JoeB wrote:This time I did some research in advance and found out that Nero Vision doesn't support subtitles. Apparently Nero Recode does, but it comes with the Nero Multimedia Suite 10 package and, I suspect given that it's named "Recode," will re-encode your imported VOB files. And I imagine (but don't know for a fact) that you'd then have to open in Vision to get the full menu editing stuff, and even then I don't know if Vision would honor the subtitles.
Nero Recode is basically an expanded version of DVDShrink -- without copy protection removal -- , it will only recode if necessary to fit the disc for example, so not a problem for the purposes discussed here. But also serves no purpose for this task.
Give point (c), and given that ConvertX presently provides the best quality DVD output of any consumer level conversion program, I am now coming to the conclusion expressed by a few others that VSO could, in all probability, dramatically improve sales if they did one of the following:
Why not start a poll to see what users want and think about the subject, do they want a menu editor and what features would they like.

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Coral
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Post by Coral » Thu Oct 28, 2010 11:30 am

I'm all for a menu editor where you can edit backgrounds, motion and/or static. Move buttons to any place over the background. Link functions to objects (eg. drag movie thumbnail over icon to define a play button) Define a default button (eg. make the jump to the next menu page the default button.) This is what comes to mind at the moment. Perhaps I'm asking for too much !

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Post by ckhouston » Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:19 pm

Most of what you ask for should be fairly easy to implement with the present template setup. In other words, any behavior that can be changed by manual template editing could be done automatically on the fly with the custom values saved as a new template. Navigation order and the default button are determined by navh/v_index values so that should not be a problem for example.

But things like dynamic linking of objects to a selectable function would probably require restructuring of the menu setup both in templates and program code. The function of buttons is defined in code and the code seems to be married to the use of all 4 menu types with a few exceptions.

I wonder if VSO might be interested in a separate authoring program as hinted at by JoeB. It would satisfy techies and still keep CX2D as it is which appeals to many people. They have the background to get started, but probably not an easy task judging from the size of some discussed here and their shortcomings.

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Post by Coral » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:58 am

I have raised the questin about VSO provideing users with a separate menu editor ages ago. Where I have described how the menu editor for DVD Workshop 2 in PhotoImpact works. This has been in one of my very early posts, but unfortunatly there has been no response from VSO.

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Post by ckhouston » Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:01 pm

They may not think there is enough demand to be wortwhile. That is why I suggested starting a poll to find out how much demand there is.

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Post by JoeB » Fri Oct 29, 2010 5:56 pm

ckhouston wrote:They may not think there is enough demand to be wortwhile. That is why I suggested starting a poll to find out how much demand there is.
Really busy now, but will put together a poll on the weekend.

Regards,

JoeB

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Post by toaddub » Mon Nov 01, 2010 5:20 pm

ckhouston wrote:Most of what you ask for should be fairly easy to implement with the present template setup. In other words, any behavior that can be changed by manual template editing could be done automatically on the fly with the custom values saved as a new template. Navigation order and the default button are determined by navh/v_index values so that should not be a problem for example.
I'm curious as to how can you make it automatically jump to the next menu page with the defined default button selected, e.g. when you press the right directional button on the remote when you are currently on the rightmost button in the chapter menu. Right now, you have to press/activate a button in order to jump to the next menu page. Besides, creating new hidden buttons, the automatic jump is in the button command and I don't see it in the template. I suppose the Location entry is only part of the solution.

Edit: ok, I just realize you mentioned about the function of buttons being in the code. If this part is exposed in the template, then anything is possible.

This automatic jump can be done with PgcEdit without messing with the template.

The navh/v_index values have directional limitations. It would be nice if it can be broken down to navu/d/l/r_index so you can navigate in 4 directions independently.

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Post by ckhouston » Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:44 pm

Yes the 4 nav directions would be better. And it would be better if the default button is specified independently of the nav indexes, because button arrangement on the page and order of navigation now have to be coordinated which creates some awkward situations.
Edit: ok, I just realize you mentioned about the function of buttons being in the code. If this part is exposed in the template, then anything is possible.
Yes but I also said
But things like dynamic linking of objects to a selectable function would probably require restructuring of the menu setup both in templates and program code.
That might require a lot of work, only VSO knows if they are willing.

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Post by Coral » Tue Nov 02, 2010 6:18 am

toaddub
This is how I would link a default button on the authoring software I use.
I can link which ever button I choose, even for each individual page.
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Post by toaddub » Tue Nov 02, 2010 5:17 pm

Thanks for showing, Coral. DVDWS looks real nice. It would be helpful for someone using this product. I already know how to do that in a DVD Editor.

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Post by Coral » Wed Nov 03, 2010 4:55 am

DVD Workshop is (has been) a great authoring tool for menus. Pity it has not been further developed.
However as a converter it is as slow as a lame ant. Yet the quality is quite good.

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Post by Tattoo » Sun Nov 14, 2010 6:38 am

I finally bought a widescreen. I bought the Panasonic VIERA TC-P42G25 42-Inch 1080p Plasma HDTV. It's a great tv and I love it. Now I can see first hand what ckhouston was saying about the menu being stretched. I took a picture of one and I have to say that it doesn't look bad. I think it looks pretty good actually. I can certainly deal with them looking like this. I just thought I'd share this with you all. Thanks again for all your help when I needed it and thank you very much for the link to the High-Def Forums. I think it was geronimo that posted it. I would not have a great tv if he didn't. I'd buy ya a case of beer if you lived near me. :D The picture is a little dark because I just got this camera not long ago and am not used to it yet. But it still shows the screen well.
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Post by JJ » Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:24 am

Good to hear that you got it solved.
New technology is certainly huge step to better... :)

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Post by ckhouston » Sun Nov 14, 2010 1:11 pm

The workaround does a decent job as Tattoo shows, and the same amount of background preparation would be required even if CX2D offered proper 16:9 menus.

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Post by Tattoo » Sun Nov 14, 2010 5:13 pm

ckhouston wrote:The workaround does a decent job as Tattoo shows, and the same amount of background preparation would be required even if CX2D offered proper 16:9 menus.
If I understand you correctly, you think I did something different to the menu shown but I didn't. The menu is just one I edited to add the image of the DVD box cover or other image. Tattoo (DVD Image). The buttons are the standard VSO buttons. I only change the background color to blue for variation and used a wider image to fill the screen more instead of a thin image. Also, I didn't change the aspect ratio or anything.

I should add this too. This tv has a few different viewing modes; FULL, H-FILL, JUST, 4:3 & ZOOM. The picture above was taken while on FULL which is default.

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Post by ckhouston » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:15 pm

I don't know what you did, but, if the blue background you pasted that picture on was not 16:9, you did change the aspect of the picture, distorted it in other words.

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Post by Tattoo » Mon Nov 15, 2010 7:00 pm

ckhouston wrote:I don't know what you did, but, if the blue background you pasted that picture on was not 16:9, you did change the aspect of the picture, distorted it in other words.
OK, I think I know what you mean, now, but it is the TV that changed the aspect because the menu is basically the Black Mirror with an image added. The background.jpg is 720x576. The picture mode on the TV is FULL, which is the default mode, and it stretches the menus to fit the screen.

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Post by ckhouston » Mon Nov 15, 2010 8:17 pm

Re-read the guide.

CX2D will stretch a 16:9 background to a 4:3 aspect -- stretching produces distortion. Then your TV streches the converted 4:3 menu back to 16:9 so there is no net distortion of the background. So you should prepare your background as if the CX2D menus were really 16:9 since that is what you are shooting for.

Other menu items (buttons, text snd thumbnails) will be distorted though unless you change them in the template.

Aspect ratio is the physical width divided by the height. Its general definition is

DAR = PAR x RR

where DAR is the displayed aspect, PAR is the aspect of the pixels, and RR is the ratio of horizontal to vertical pixels. Graphics always use a PAR of 1 (square pixel) so DAR = RR, but video uses rectangular pixels. You can see these parameters in your log and in the tree view.

So, if you want a 4:3 menu with a still image background, use 720x540 = 1.333 or any resolution with the same ratio like 1280x960, and use 720x405 = 1.778, or another one like 640x360, for 16:9 menus.

CX2D will resize a still like 640x360 to 720x405 before streching it, so I recommend you do the resizing yourself if you have a good graphics editor, VSO Image Resizer is good if you don't. Make sure aspect is maintained during resizing.

Video backgrounds should be prepared at either 4:3 or 16:9 as described in the guide depending on which aspect you want the menu to display at on your TV.

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Post by Tattoo » Mon Nov 15, 2010 9:03 pm

Thank you for the explanation ckhouston, but I'm happy with how it looks now. I did try that once but didn't like how it looked after it was stretched. I might mess with it again now that I have a widescreen but for now, the default size is just fine to me. I am making new menus for the 3 Underworld movies that I want 16:9 and will see how they turn out but other than them, I'll just stick with the default size as it doesn't look bad. I did change the Chapters thumbs to 16:9 to match the movie.

Regards

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