Your Movies Everywhere! (Part 2)

6/22/2013 9:13:33 AM

Rip a DVD for iTunes

Rip your DVDs and convert them into an iTunes- and iOS-compatible format

As Apple is phasing out optical drives on many new models of Mac, the DVD looks set to eventually go the way of the floppy disc. But in the meantime, many people have lots of DVDs that they want to view on their Macs and also on their iPads and iPhones. This can be done with the help of a DVD ripper like Handbrake.

But before you start, a word of warning. As it stands, you're not allowed to rip a movie from a DVD—even if you legally purchased it and the copy is for your own use. The reason for this is that doing so involves breaking the copy protection, which is prohibited by a law called the DMCA. "Fair use" offers no exemptions for this. This is why every DVD ripper makes a point that you're only allowed to use it for unprotected, noncommercial DVDs. In some cases, they've enforced that rule.

That said, to date, nobody has been dragged before a judge because they wanted to watch their own DVD on their own iPad, in much the same way that the recording industry has never prosecuted anyone solely for ripping their own CDs. Downloading movies illegally, on the other hand, is a big no-no. Torrent sites especially are a potentially dangerous way to pirate because you’re uploading bits of the movie at the same time as downloading others. Legally speaking, that means you’re distributing illegal, copyrighted files as well as acquiring them.

Ripping your DVDs using an app such as Handbrake will enable you to view them on your Apple devices.

How to rip your DVDS using handbrake

1.    Download Handbrake

Head to and grab the latest build of the Handbrake ripping app. It runs on OS X 10.6 or later. Open the downloaded disk image and copy the app either to your Applications folder if you intend to keep it, or to the Desktop for a single use. Double-click to open it.

2.    Open the Disc

Pop your home-burned DVD into the drive. You can also choose to open a disk image or a movie file from the Open browser. Once opened. Handbrake will analyze the disc and identify its contents. It should pick up chapters and display each section in the Title menu.

3.    Choose a Preset

The menu on the right contains a list of presets for all kinds of devices. If you click on the Devices tab you will see various ones listed; choose the one you need. Here, we've gone for an iPhone 4 preset. You can also make your own presets and save them using this menu.

4.    Tweak the Settings

Handbrake analyzes the source video and automatically sets things like frame rate, though you can change it if you like. You can also enter a Constant Quality setting or an average bitrate if you feel confident playing with these settings. If you’re unsure, stick with the defaults.

5.    Picture Settings

The other options windows are pretty advanced and needn't trouble most users. But you might want to click the Picture Settings button at the top so you can choose to crop the picture during conversion to make it a custom size. There are also helpful filters, such as Deblock, which you can use smooth video quality.

6.    Add to Queue

If you want to rip more than one video or chapter from the same disc, you can set up your first encode and hit Add To Queue, then configure more encodes by selecting a new title from the Title menu. Use different settings for subsequent encodes if you like.

7.    Start the Encode

Press the Start button and Handbrake will create a movie based on your settings. Depending on the length of the video and the quality settings, this can take a while, although on modern Macs you shouldn’t wait more than 10 minutes to encode a 10-minute video, for example.

8.    Drop into iTunes

When your encode is done, drag and drop your converted movie into iTunes. From there, you can watch it or sync it to any iOS device that supports the frame size. This is why it's important to choose an appropriate preset before encoding—some devices have frame-size limitations.

Streaming Your Media

Get video to almost any device in your home with these streaming solutions

The Apple TV started life as a rather clunky box with a built-in hard drive; to get content onto it you had to sync movies from iTunes. Despite still officially being described by Apple as a "hobby" project, the Apple TV is now a remarkable little box, and a tremendous value for the price of just $99.

The Apple TV acts as a conduit between your Mac, your HDTV, and the Internet. Inside your house it can stream movies, pictures, and music from iTunes to the TV. The system has a physical remote, and the Remote app for iOS provides excellent tactile control. And thanks to a recent update, it even supports Bluetooth keyboards. If you use iTunes Match, your entire music library is available to stream on the Apple TV. You can also buy and rent video content from the iTunes Store on it, as well as using Netflix. Then there's the other apps, such as Radio, Apple Events, YouTube, Vimeo, and Podcasts, amongst others, that let you stream content from the Internet straight to your TV without using a Mac.

The Apple TV has come a long way since its initial release

The third incredibly useful thing the Apple TV enables is AirPlay. With an Apple TV on your network, all your iOS devices gain the ability to send video and audio directly to it and hence to your TV— wirelessly. Some games even use AirPlay, so your iOS device becomes a controller. Another nice thing about AirPlay is that as long as you're on a network, you can stream stuff, so you could show photos or play music at a friend’s house wirelessly without having to copy any files manually.

The free PS3 streaming app is able to stream to a number of other devices across your wireless network.

Mirroring Screens

It's also possible to mirror your iPad or iPhone's display to your TV via the Apple TV by turning on mirroring on the portable device. This is also possible with very recent Macs, so you can use your TV as a monitor. Nonetheless, you can still mirror your display thanks to third-party apps like AirParrot (, If your Mac supports mirroring natively, you'll see an AirPlay icon at the top right of the menu bar. The most recent update to AirPlay is called AirPlay Direct, which enables you to stream audio to a compatible device without the need for a Wi-Fi network. AO Audio’s SmartSpeaker supports this.

Of course, you don’t have to use Apple-branded hardware to be able to stream content around your house. There are a number of free or inexpensive media-streaming apps available for the Mac. One of the best is PS3 Media Server, free from www. This software is powered by a number of open-source engines and can be used to transcode music and movies on the fly and beam them directly to a range of devices including PS3, Xbox 360, Sony Bravia TVs, Android devices, and many others. PS3 Media Server might not have the elegance of iTunes but it handles many more formats, and despite having lots of options, it can be used in simple mode to keep things fairly uncomplicated.

Elsewhere. Air Video (www.inmethod. com/air-video) is a Mac client/iOS app combo that also transcodes video on the fly as it streams to your iOS devices, and allows you to access your Mac’s movie libraries on your iPad or iPhone without going near iTunes.

Top 10
New App for Women ‘Remix’ Offers Fashion Advice & Style Tips
SG50 Ferrari F12berlinetta : Prancing Horse for Lion City's 50th
The latest Audi TT : New angles for TT
Era of million-dollar luxury cars
Game Review : Hearthstone - Blackrock Mountain
Game Review : Battlefield Hardline
Google Chromecast
Keyboards for Apple iPad Air 2 (part 3) - Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover for iPad Air 2
Keyboards for Apple iPad Air 2 (part 2) - Zagg Slim Book for iPad Air 2
Keyboards for Apple iPad Air 2 (part 1) - Belkin Qode Ultimate Pro Keyboard Case for iPad Air 2
- First look: Apple Watch

- 3 Tips for Maintaining Your Cell Phone Battery (part 1)

- 3 Tips for Maintaining Your Cell Phone Battery (part 2)
Popular Tags
Video Tutorail Microsoft Access Microsoft Excel Microsoft OneNote Microsoft PowerPoint Microsoft Project Microsoft Visio Microsoft Word Active Directory Exchange Server Sharepoint Sql Server Windows Server 2008 Windows Server 2012 Windows 7 Windows 8 Adobe Flash Professional Dreamweaver Adobe Illustrator Adobe Photoshop CorelDRAW X5 CorelDraw 10 windows Phone 7 windows Phone 8 Iphone