Frequently asked questions:
Run-time problems:
  • No frames transcoded with libdv-0.9. What happened?
    I suspect you have hit the libdv-0.9 MMX run-time detection bug. Please install libdv-0.9.5 or newer or downgrade to libdv-0.8. If you have avifile + DV codecs installed, you can also use "-x af6".

  • CSS keys were printed but ripping stops immedatialy. Quoting Joern Reder:
    Some users had problems with ripping DVDs since they upgraded from transcode 0.5.3 to transcode 0.6.0. One symptom was that CSS keys were printed but ripping stops immedatialy after this. I couldn't help with this issue, because I couldn't reproduce it on my system, but now we know the solution (after a success report from Matt Hutchinson): mixing transcode versions in different installation directories (e.g. /usr and /usr/local) mostly doesn't work. transcode dynamically loads modules and this easily fails, if several versions are mixed on the system.
    So delete transcode 0.5.3 before upgrading or make sure that the old binaries are overwritten. Check for binaries named tc*, avi* and transcode in /usr/bin (or /usr/local/bin - attention: not all binaries called this way need to belong to transcode, so check twice) and also for a library directory called transcode in /usr/lib (or /usr/local/lib).
Transcoding artifacts:
  • I get only weired colors, faces are blue?
    Use the "-k" option to swap blue and red color components of the internal RGB representation.

  • Encoding to DivX/XviD picture color is somehow screwed by colored shadows. What's wrong?
    The video frame size (width and height) on export must be a multiple of 16 due to internal encoder restrictions. Also do not use cropping with odd parameters, like "-j 45" in conjunction with internal Y'CbCr (YV12/I420) color space representation

  • I have strange colors artifact using recent divx codec (divx4, ffmpeg) for playing my encoded movie. They are not present using older codecs (divx3, opendivx).
    Your movie dimensions are probably incorrect, try re-encoding it with 16 multiple height and width.

  • I try to encode a DVD PCM audio stream, but the resulting stream sounds like white noise?
    In most cases, DVD PCM audio tracks require swapping of audio bytes with option "-d".

Required packages:
  • Do I need the avifile library to read and write AVI-files?
    No. transcode comes with native AVI-file support. AVI-files with multiple audio tracks are also supported by transcode.

  • I have avifile v0.6 installed but transcode gives me errors compiling the related modules. What can I do?
    You can either disable avifile support by using the configure option "--with-avifile-mods=no" or use a newer working official 0.6 snapshot. transcode is known to compile and work with CVS snapshot of 2001-12-07.

  • Will transcode work with latest avifile v0.7?
    Maybe. Untested.

  • I have liba52 v0.7.2 installed but transcode gives me errors compiling the related modules. What can I do?
    Please upgrade to liba52 v0.7.3 and make sure all static and dynamic libs of the old package are removed. Older versions of transcode (<0.6.0pre3) however require liba52 v0.7.2 but do not work properly. Upgrading is recommended.

  • SuSE Linux 7.3 & 8.0 - mp2enc/mpeg2enc not found.
    Obwohl das mjpegtools-Paket installiert ist, findet transcode die Befehle mp2enc und mpeg2enc nicht. SuSE hat bei der Erstellung des RPM-Paketes diese beiden Programme "vergessen". Um diesen Fehler zu beheben, einfach das vorhandene Paket deinstallieren (rpm -e paket) und das Originalpaket ( installieren (rpm -i paket). Wichtig ist, dass das vorhandene Paket deinstalliert wird, da in diesem Fall das neuere Paket als aelter erkannt und nicht installiert wird, obwohl es eindeutig das neuere ist.

Audio and video synchronization issues:
  • My DivX/XviD movie encoded from a NTSC DVD is out of sync. What is wrong?
    This is a very complex issue. I will devote this a separate entry somewhere else.

  • Audio-Video out of sync after merging encoded DV or VOB clips?
    There is a fundamental problem when merging files with MP3 sound, that have been transcoded individually. As far as I know, it needs a certain amount of raw PCM data to make a MP3 encoded frame. At the end of the encoding process, this condition is almost never fullfilled. Therefore, some audio data are simply not encoded, or, using option -O, PCM data are padded to make a final full MP3 frame. In the former case, sound is too short in time, whereas in the latter, the audio played by a player exceeds the video playtime. This may be only a few milliseconds but add up when merging the clips.

  • What is the advantage using option "-t" in contrast to DVD chapter mode "-U"?
    With option "-t", the MP3 encoder is not switched off. Buffered audio data never get lost. After merging, audio and video are OK (in theory). This is also the reason, why the cluster mode must use this approach encoding the audio in a separate step, unless you want to use raw PCM audio data. The chapter mode, however, splits logical movie units, which may be useful for other reasons.
Transcode tools:
  • avisplit breaks AV synchronization. What happened?
    aviplit is only able to correctly split transcode generates AVI-files, i.e., interleaved files with video/audio frames paired.

  • Why is transcode so slow? It sucks.
    Most processor time is spent in the codec on the export side. Video frame processing sometimes is slow depending on the complexity of the operation. However, the most significant speedup is achieved by switching to internal Y'CbCr (YV12/I420) representation by using "-V". Most modules support this color space representation which speeds up everything from decoding to processing and re-encoding. On the down-side, color information gets lost but is barely notable. Decide for yourself if you need high-quality results or a quick backup copy.

  • I have a couple of DV AVI-file clips I want to transcode as a single movie without merging. How does it work?
    The "directory mode" with option "-i" also works for DV AVI-files (hopefully). Try to put all clips into a directory and use the directory name to let transcode extract and merge the raw DV stream for further processing.

Last modified: Thu May 23 11:17:14 CEST 2002