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DVD Catalyst Newsletter 122 – 09-20-13





Thank you for reading DVD Catalyst Newsletter 122.

Today is iPhone day. By the time that you are reading this, the newly released Apple iPhone 5c and Apple iPhone 5s are available both online and in cellphone store locations all over the US. In addition to Apple, this week also had the latest iteration of the notorious Grand Theft Auto video game, GTA V as a release.

Lets get started :)


Tech News:


iPhone Week:

Earlier this week, Apple publicly released the next OS version for its mobile devices, iOS7.

iOS 7, thoroughly reviewed | Ars Technica

The update's biggest change is the actual look. The icons Apple used for its apps since original release started to look a little outdated, and with iOS7, it now features a clean look. I don't know how to describe it, but it looks more "natural" for some reason.

As mentioned above, today marks the availability of the iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s.

The iPhone 5c is not that interesting to me, since it is basically the internals of last years iPhone 5, put into a cheaper casing. The colors are a nice option, but aside from maybe a signal boost due to the lack of an aluminum back, I don't see a reason to pick one up. In fact, it might be more interesting to wait a few weeks for people to upgrade their iPhone 5 to an iPhone 5s, and then pick up an iPhone 5 for cheap from eBay or Craigslist.

AnandTech | The iPhone 5s Review

iPhone 5c review


Grand Theft Auto 5 was released earlier this week.

While some people are experiencing some complications with the game, reviewers all over the web were very positive about the game, and many consider it somewhat of a swansong of the current-generation game consoles.

Grand Theft Auto V for Xbox 360 Reviews - Metacritic

Grand Theft Auto V for PlayStation 3 Reviews - Metacritic

Grand Theft Auto 5 takes more than $800m in day one sales - SlashGear


Tools4Movies News

Galaxy Nexus Upgrade:

As mentioned in the previous newsletter, my Galaxy Nexus is up for renewal, and I am considering upgrading to a current generation smartphone.

Earlier this week I posted up the first of a series of articles about my "quest":


It contains a list of different phones I am considering as a worthy upgrade, along with some of my needs and how I use my current phone. Later this week, I'll be going into the actual device specifications, and how they would affect my choice on the ultimate smartphone for the next 2 years for me.

Below some links to reviews of the different smartphones I am considering. Of course there are multiple websites that have reviews for these models, but these should give you a general idea.

LG G2: Review: LG?s G2 smartphone gets caught living in the shadows of giants | Ars Technica

iPhone 5s: AnandTech | The iPhone 5s Review

Galaxy S4: Samsung Galaxy S4 review | Phone Reviews | TechRadar

HTC One: HTC One review (2013)

Blackberry Z10 (might end up a Z30 instead though): BlackBerry Z10 Review | CrackBerry.com

Xperia Z1: Sony Xperia Z1 review - Pocket-lint

Nokia Lumia 1020: Nokia Lumia 1020 review

The Nexus 5 and the Galaxy Note 3 are not available yet, so no actual reviews for those yet.

I am leaning towards something the size of a Galaxy Note 3 / LG G2, even though I would like to have something other than what I am used to.

As for a provider, I might even switch companies. Right now, I have no reception unless I use a signal booster that is connected to my internet connection, and if I walk outside I can not receive calls, which is a bit annoying, especially considering my wifi signal is still going strong.

1 movie, multiple devices:

On a daily basis I get questions from people who would like to use 1 setting for videos while being able to play the same video on more than one device. Digital Copies and iTunes/Google Play purchases and the likes work fine on a certain type/brand/category of devices, however, if you have a mixture devices from different brands, these types of videos are not an option.

If you use physical content carriers like DVD and Bluray, you can create your own "digital copies" that will work on a variety of different devices. Of course it depends on which devices are being used for video playback, so I posted up an article where I go into some generics of how you can accomplish this:



Tips & Tricks:

How to make movies smaller:

Earlier this week, someone on the forums asked me if it was possible to use DVD Catalyst to make videos smaller so they could be emailed.

Many people don't realize that DVD Catalyst almost always makes the videos smaller.

If you convert a DVD, depending on the profile you use of course, movies generally end up around the 1-2GB in file-size (less for lower resolution devices) without much visual loss in quality. This by itself doesn't sound too impressive, unless you take into account that a DVD movie is between 4GB and 8GB in size on the actual disc.

With Bluray, the difference is even more, with DVD Catalyst (read this bluray guide first on how to use DVD Catalyst with Bluray) often reducing the size of a Bluray movie (30-40GB) by a factor of 10 (3-4GB) while still keeping an excellent quality, so of course DVD Catalyst is capable of making video files smaller as well.

Contradictory to what many people believe, the resolution of a video is NOT what affects the filesize of a video file. It is the bitrate, Kbps, of the video and audio portion of a video that determines the actual filesize. The Kbps (Kb PER SECOND) determines how much data (=filesize) the video uses per second.


Going from an average 1500Kbps to 500Kbps for the video quality setting results in the video file sizes to be reduced in a similar way, even if the resolution stays the same.

But, the resolution is tied directly to the visual quality.

By reducing the Kbps for video to 1/3rd, only 1/3rd of the data is available for each pixel, so unless you reduce the amount of pixels in a similar amount, the visual quality will be considerably less.



For more information and tips on how you can make your video files smaller, have a look here:




Upgrade your device to the latest software version or not?

Ars Technica had an interesting little article this week on updating an iPad 2 with iOS7,

Don?t let me down, Apple: iOS 7 on the iPad 2 | Ars Technica

It is always interesting to be able to install a major update on an older device, but as the article describes, it isn't all roses when you do.

My own preference with big updates such the iOS7 one, is more the "if it isn't broke, don't fix it" way, using what you have unless you really need to upgrade.

New functionality is nice, but if you are using an older device, being able to install the latest version on it doesn't always result in a great experience.

Old TV Shows.

For the last week, I've been watching a few episodes of the classic MacGuyver TV show. Of course years ago, I watched it on TV, but one of the things with the DVD releases of these older shows is that you can watch all episodes. The old classics TV shows were "stand alone" episodes, with here and there a 2 or 3 part, and it really didn't matter that much (except for the multi-part ones) if you missed an episode here and there.

Now, with DVRs and On Demand being available to (almost) everyone, TV shows are following a season- or even series-length story line, with an additional story line for individual episodes.

While the complexity of the current top TV shows is very good, I miss the simpler content of shows like MacGuyver, Hogans Heroes etc.

You hear all these things about budget issues with shows like Arrow, Games of Thrones etc, but while it looks amazing, does it really need to have the latest and greatest (and most expensive) special effects. They did great with pyrotechnics in the 80's and 90's, so maybe they should look back at that to shave off a few bucks.



Anyway, that was it for this week,

Thanks again for reading the DVD Catalyst Newsletter, and have a great weekend.



About DVD Catalyst:

DVD Catalyst 4 is the fastest, easiest and most affordable software available for converting and optimizing your movies and TV shows from DVD and for converting popular (AVI, DIVX, XVID, MKV, ISO etc) video files so you can play them on just about anything capable of playing videos, including all the popular Android/Apple tablets and Smartphones.

For only $9.95, you can watch your own DVD collection on your tablet or smartphone, without having to purchase or rent movies you already paid for from an online movie store such as iTunes or Google Play.
In addition of converting your DVDs, DVD Catalyst also optimizes videos that do not play properly on your device so that you can watch them without stutter or freezing.

Here is how it works:

Step 1: Download and install DVD Catalyst 4 on your computer.

If you have not done so already, download the free trial version (link) or purchase the retail version for a limited time for only $9.95 (link).
Note: DVD Catalyst works on Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8.
Apple MAC/OSX or Linux are NOT supported at this time.


Step 2: Start DVD Catalyst 4 and select your device profile.
DVD Catalyst 4 includes profiles for all the latest tablets and smart phones, including the Apple iPad Mini and iPhone 5, Amazon Kindle Fire HD, Barnes & Noble NOOK HD, Samsung Galaxy S3, Galaxy Note 2 and much more.


Step 3: Insert your DVD or drag your video files over onto DVD Catalyst 4, and tap Go to start the conversion process.


After the conversion is complete, connect your device to your computer and copy the created movie file over.


Quick, easy, and the best quality,


Regular price $19.95
, for a limited time only $9.95

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