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Video to iPod, two options

This article provides step-by-step instuctions on how to to use freely-available software tools to transfer video files to your iPod

* Please remember that making copies of copyrighted material is illegal.
* This is a translation of an old project, most likely there are new version of the software,
   but the basic steps will be the same as described.

Used in this article:
   Handbrake (Handbrake-win-2.41.exe)       Website:
   Free iPod Video Converter (version 1.32)  Website:
   ffdshow (2002-06-17)                                    Website:

All are Freeware.

From DVD to IPod

The direct method is using Handbrake, however commercial DVD’s may have antipiracy protections so these instructions won’t always work.

Using HandBrake
Install Handbrake
Open the application
Fig1After selecting [Browse] the following Windows will open
Fig2Select the DVD and then the VIDEO_TS folder, Click [Accept]
On this window click [OK] and the message will pop up.
Fig3When the process is completed and the Window has closed, from the menu select tools then options
Fig4Depending on your processor the number of processors will appear DO NOT change it
Fig5It is possible to change the priority level, I recommend Above Normal
Fig6Back to the main Window, select the longest title
Fig7In “Destination”, click on [Browse] and select the folder where you want to save the  transcoded file and type the new you want to use
Fig8Then we select the codec to be used, as this guide is for IPod we select H.264 (IPod)
Fig9You can change the image size, which depends on the source.  In this example the image is “wide screen” and its aspect ratio is 1.78.  When we change the size the application will show a green background if the width/height is correct, and a red background if incorrect.
Fig10In the “Picture Settings” tab we can select subtitles that will be merged to the picture
Fig11On “Video Settings” tab , leave everything to the default except for  2-Pass Encoding, this will make the process take longer, but will give us better definition.
Fig12Fig13Now just click [Encode Video] and the process will start showing the Window below
Fig14With a Pentium Core Duo de 3 GHz,  2 GB  RAM it takes around 1:45 hrs, without subtitles; with subtitles it’ll take longer

From MPG, AVI, etc. to IPod

Sometimes, we have videos in MPG, MPEG or AVI to convert them to the IPod format we’ll use Free IPod Video Converter from Jodix.

Install  free-ipod-video-converter.exe,  and start the application click on [Add Files], then we will navigate to the folder where we have the files to be converted.  You can use Windows default shortcuts like [Ctrl] for selecting spaced files or (Caps) to select a range.
Fig15Once we have done the selection the following Windows will appear
Fig16As we have already selected the files, we won’t play with the Input File box
Here we have the specs of the file to be converted
Click [Next]
Fig17Here we select the destination folder, by clicking […] the following Window opens
Fig18Select the desired folder and click [Save]
On the next screen we select the video size; I prefer to use the same as the source.
Fig19Observe the text on the “Output File Information” the “Video Bitrate” is direct to the smoothness of the playback the bigger it is the smother the image will appear, the limit on an IPod is 1500 kbps.
Click  [Next>]
Fig20In this Window, you fill the tag for the file, I don’t normally use it, and I like to fill it under ITunes.
Click [OK]

If we selected several files the application will ask us if we want to use the same settings,
Fig21...the tag, image size, output folder.   If we answer  [No] the previous process will repeat as many times as files we have chosen. For this example we’ll assume we click [Yes]
Fig22At the end we’ll have the list of files to be converted click [Convert!] and the process will start

Adding Subtitles

If you want to have subtitles hard-encoded in the result file you need to install ffdshow.
Once ffdshow is installed and configured to show subtitles, place the .srt file on the same folder as the video source with exactly the same name as the video file. During the encoding process, the subtitles will be merged to the resulting file

On Pentium Core Duo de 3 GHz, con 2 GB RAM it takes approximately 20 min for each 350 MB file, so if you are doing batch conversion I recommend to check "Shut down computer automatically after conversion” --- then turn off the monitor and go to bed.
Before synchronizing the IPod we need to update ITunes, so open ITunes  From the “Menu” select “File”, “Add File” or “Add Folder” and select the videos that you want to have in your IPod.  Once they are in your playlist, select one: right click the mouse and select “Obtain Information”

On the third Tab, select “Video” from the “Type of video” dropdown box select the type of video and fill the fields with the appropriate information

Comments (6)

Jenn PrenticeContent Manager

This is a great article! I never would  have been able to figure out how to do this on my own! Thanks for writing it!

Are you planning to buy an iPad? I'd love to hear your take on it.  Debating whether to buy one, but want to read a few more reviews.
b0lsc0ttIT Manager

Great article!  Thanks for the time making it and sharing it with us.  I especially appreciate the program recommendations and details on some of the steps to make the right selection.



jennhp, b0lsc0tt;

As I stated on my paper the software I recomended may have new version, I'm aware that Handbrake had a new versión. I may do an update of this guide.

Thanks for your comments.

Brilliant, was thinking about writing an article on that too but did not find the time :-))

I use CopytransSuite (free ipod video & music transfer) software with a combination of any video convertor (that too free)

They work well,
subtitles are an option but I haven't given them a shot.


Very heplpful article!

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