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Modern DVD-A authoring programs

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schultz1010

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Joined
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Messages
78
Wow - cool that you know the fellow who did the Carly Simon disc. Bummer that he used tools that are no longer available (although I did see on eBay a G3 MAC with OS 9 and Sonic DVD Creator and breakout box for the monitor - that's getting far too extreme for me.

So those 10 cells in the Carly Simon's disc PGC 5 are a slide show with "Playlist" "<" Track ">" buttons on each slide? Is that a correct interpretation of what you wrote?

Pity that's not doable in 2015.

Yes, it appears that the Simon (and Ronstadt) DVD-A discs use a slide show setup. BUT - a still image with buttons/navigation is to paraphrase a line from Shakespeare "a menu by any other name".

An audio track in DLP has the same limitation as a slide how - 1 second resolution, there is no NDF 29.97 frame accurate addressing. Right click on an audio only track and you'll see the "Chapter -> Add Manually" only offers hh:mm:ss. NO ':ff'

If I read and understand your second paragraph - the DVDA spec says that all content shall be pointed form the AUDIO_TS ... - that means that any VTS(s) have to be linked into the Audio side AND you have to have 1 VTS (according to the DVD-V specs). Fair enough. Create a VTS 1 as a dummy splash screen, import/link that into the Audio Manager and then put the AC3 mix into the VMG. That's what the Carly Simon disc does. The VMG's only seen by the DVD-Video player, the VTS that's present goes into the AMG and everyone's happy.

Summary, to see if I've understood things correctly so far: only the VTSs that are linked in of which there has to be at least 1(and all of them apparently from what you say have to be "imported" to/by the AMG. A DVD-A can still be in spec even if the VIDEO_TS has a VMG present ( which has audio and video).

On the What's New DVD-A the Oppo103 shows 4 "titles" and one of those is the VTS 2 from the DVD-V side - it's the DTS title. That title (group?) is NOT mentioned anywhere in the DVD-A menus but is selectable using the Oppo remote control. Plays fine.

The 1GB limit is not a problem - did you see post #39? The entire Video_TS including a music video is less than 900MB. And on the Simon disc the entire VIDEO_TS.VOB is only 130MB!

The goal isn't to fill up the VIDEO_TS like for a motion picture release - most of the space goes into (as in #39) the Audio_TS. Couple hundred meg's all that is needed in the Video_TS side.

No, the What's New disc has an AC3 audio present in the VTS 2 but it looks like it's set to be the 2nd stream.

Got a new DVD-A today that does the VIDEO_TS in an interesting way - Diana Krall's "Love Scenes" puts up a still image with 13 buttons and then moves the highlighted button as the songs change. Haven't picked it apart yet though.

Ah, but that's a 2003 release - built back "the good ol' days" :)

On to your reply to my issue (and are we having fun yet? :))...

Going to have to forget about Audio cells - they would work and do what I want (most of the time) but it appears DLP uses one time scale for the generated still and another for the audio length resulting in a gap. Sigh.

1GB is *more* than enough and if I read the DVD-V specs right that's a per VTS limit, each VTS could have 1GB worth of "menus". But since the goal was to leave 2 or 3GB for Audio_TS having a limit of 1GB or so for Video_TS is fine/OK.

The AMG has never been able to address the VMG so that's not as a problem - witness the Simon DVD-A - it plays fine in a Video player and also in a DVD-A player.

1. Fake it - well, audio only title only has the 1 second resolution - that'd work most of the time, just occasionally there are continuous movements or songs run together that 1s isn't fine enough.

and Bummer from the looks of it - you can't add BOV to an audio only track. why not? seems DLP is a half done program at times.

2. low rate M2V file is probably going to have to be the method used. I can whip up a video track out of still in Final Cut Pro - each still can be specified to the frame level timing wise. Encode to a low rate (not sure if I want I frame only which raises the bitrate a *LOT* or a very small GOP size for more accurate chapter placement - can try both, the mpeg encoder I have is very good/flexible).

Will use up a lot of space even at 1500 or so MB. Hmmm, can use half D1 frame size to save space.

Problem as I understand it is that chapters/markers can only be placed at I frames and too many of those raises the bit rate.

BOV seemed to be a bit more work to set up - subtitle streams, etc - but if that's what will work I'll give it a try.

3. I agree 100% that simple is the say to go - and the Carly Simon and Ronstadt discs appeared to be a Simple (with a cap S) as onecould get - that's why I thought it would be a good example to follow for the VIDEO_TS part (eventually the AUDIO_TS will be addressed but I shudder at that - the video part was supposed to be the easiest).

since what was thought to be simple is not simple and no longer possible maybe #4 should be added to the list.

4. the other choice would be to just create a top level menu, select a chapter and let it play - just like the movies - and skip updating the screen.

OR - just thought of an alternate method using a menu per song - wouldn't be gapless but here's what one fellow wrote up for an AUDIO ONLY DVD in DLP: http://forum.videohelp.com/threads/228982-How-to-create-an-Audio-Only-DVD-in-DVDLab-Pro-(IMPROVED)

ICK.

I don't think space is a problem - haven't gotten far enough along what with all the bumps in the road to get this far. Not planning on DTS at the moment since the folks I'd be sharing the efforts with wouldn't know what to do with it or if I'm playing the AC3 version it's because I'm away from the DVD-A player.

It seems what appears simple was perhaps so at the time, 13 or 14 years ago, but is not possible today :(

A template would be graciously accepted. If there's a way to post it to the forum that'd be great.

It's not how I envisioned things working - thought DLP could fashion stills into cells" and away things would go and we wouldn't be having such a scintillating conversation.

oh yeah, first play / do once stuff once logic was already in place ;)

thanks for all the time / effort (and patience)!


That "Menu" is a thing called "Buttons Over Video", and it is only possible in 2 programs - Sonic DVD Creator (Mac only, OS-9, required hardware box to preview output) and Scenarist.
DLP can do this but not over an audio only title.
However, you can fake it.........
BTW - if the Video_TS content is accessible in the Audio Manager, and the DVDA spec says that all content in the Video_TS shall be pointed from the Audio_TS (although it does not say it must be user selectable) and the problem right there is that unless you have a VTS title, there is no VTS.XML or VTS_PTT.XML file generated for DAC to get hold of, and this will trigger a spec fail. Therefore the Carly Simon must be a slideshow based title, plus I know the guy who authored it, and he used Creator for Video_TS and MEI DAC (not the Sonic version but the MEI one) for Audio_TS.

Re the example disc in question.
If that has DTS bare ass naked in it's own VTS then the disc is out of spec, as the specs clearly state that DTS shall not be the sole stream or the primary stream in any title as it is an optionally supported codec, not a mandatory one - and I would be surprised if the AC3 were not actually in the same VTS as stream 0, with the DTS as stream 1. I do know of OOS Video_TS (The Bjork Surrounded box set of DualDiscs are all DTS alone) but none in a DVD-Audio disc as it would fail the spec check on import.

Anyway, to your issue.
For proper functionality as well as player compatibility please forget all about using audio in menu cells to do this. It ain't gonna work.
First up, you have an absolute limitation of 1Gb.
Secondly, you cannot address such a disc in AMG and it will be out of spec.
Thirdly, even if you could pull it off in spec (and you cannot) you will have serious playability problems. That's the hardest thing to get right, and simple discs are the only way to go.
Honestly.

The best approach is to do it one of 2 ways (and if space is an issue here, then one way is out from the start).
1 - Fake it.
Create an Audio Only title and for each still image in the timeline, use a song tracklist screen with the currently playing track highlighted in a different colour, or with a marker of some sort.
The remote control numbered buttons will access tracks directly, FF/RW will work on most players (but you will have to enable it in UserOps), Next/Previous will work.
2 - use a low bitrate M2V file and use "buttons over video".

You have no choice unless you are prepared to risk spec issues, playability issues & all manner of import issues and furthermore can obtain a mac and a copy of DVD Creator to run on it complete with the decoder video breakout box. No other application can do this (active navigation over slideshows) as Scenarist does it at the wrong level with Slideshows so even though you can have multiple images you cannot set a chapter marker at these images - it's one or all the same - and DVD-Lab Pro cannot create BOV over an Audio-Only title, only a movie title so that brings us back to low bitrate M2V files, and I need to know if space is an issue here for you, or just the way you had envisaged this all working.

Suggest the following layout (assuming you have just AC3/DTS surround and a stereo programme)
If you want to lose the AC3, you get a much simpler disc to create (single VTS) but at the cost of widespread compatibility.
Anyway, I would start it off something like this:

VMGM Menus:

Splash Screen (label logo, whatever)
Main Menu
Empty "Dummy" Menu for VTS 2 access

VTS1 - Surround Mixes
One Audio-Only title
One Root Menu
One Audio Menu (set this menu type in UserOps)

VTS2 - Stereo
One Audio-Only title
One Root Menu

Create your artwork, prepare single contiguous streams for each audio option and note the timecode for song breaks in 29.97 Non Drop timecode as HH:MM:SS:FF
Encode your AC3 and DTS streams, make sure you use DTS Padded with DLP or you may get issues as it will accept .cpt but is not happy about it.
Would a template help?
I could create the basic layout and structure, name everything & create button hotspots that you could later modify as needed and add the core code needed to make the disc work without triggering spec violations on import to DAC. BTW, if you ever get a spec import error of "VTSM Not permitted" you can ignore this & continue import safely as this restriction was lifted but I do not know what book revision your DAC is running.........

I will build this in version 2.31-2.5 PS Merge (I'll check for the build you mention but am not sure I am on this one, although the template should function well enough on a later version of the program) and it would also be a good idea to start a little notebook for various bits of code. You will need to know this, but a lot of it can be discovered by using the abstraction layer, seeing what code it write & then reusing this in the custom VM Command script editor. Things may get geeky, and a notebook will help you out - I know it works for me. Useful stuff like a pre/post trap to make sure a splash screen only plays once - pressing title or top menu on a remote effectively invokes the "First Play" option, and that is our splash screen or label logo or piracy warning or whatnot so we do this:
Right-Click the object in the Connections window (I have this one floating on it's own monitor) and open the "Edit VM Commands" area & add this:
If (GPRM0=1), LinkPGCN 2
GPRM0 = 1

Then in the Post Commands add this
LinkPGCN 2
We have tried this using "LinkTailPGC" in place of specifically naming the screen but a lot of soft players do not understand this - WinDVD for one so it's pointless even though spec legal.
In the VMGM and VTSM sections, the menu PGC numbers are matched to their order in the list so the first VMGM menu number is pgc 1, then pgc 2 etc. Same applies in VTSM.
(PGC 1 = first menu, but in code it is pgcn 1 etc)

Anyway - if a template like this will help....let me know?
 
Last edited:

neil wilkes

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Messages
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We are indeed having fun.

Video_TS and it's size:
If all you really need is an AC3 copy of the Audio_TS, then discWelder Chrome's AutoMirror will get the job done methinks.
My problem with that is that the approach kinda says we don't care much about anyone without an audio capable DVD player. This is the fundamental reason we do Video_TS the way we do.
Plus it's a good way to add PCM extras and only have them on the disc once, addressing the content via AMGM or VMGM SS.

Getting back to specifics though.
Audio Only titles indeed have hh:mm:ss resolution this is about as good as you will get simply because of the way DVD works.
Here are the things fighting against you:
1 - Player lock-down time - needed to latch on to a VOB, start decoding both audio & video and actually outputting content - generally at least a half a second, often more. This is with M2V and simple stuff such as single stream audio. Some Denon players shop 17 frames before starting to lock down, so again +/- a second there.
2 - Audio Packets. Track Markers in an Audio-Only title are created from the available points in the audio stream in the VOB, and with 24/96 PCM these are large chunks, and with codec based audio like AC3 & DTS these are again fixed in size (albeit smaller) - remember the image is added afterwards here as this is a bit of a fudge the developers put in mainly for me (along with being able to turn off the Abstraction Layers) and you are sadly correct in thinking it is half-finished as to me there are a lot of annoying quirks in the programme. That said, 3/4 of the discs I do would not be possible without it.
3 - Even if using an MPEG-2 stream (which theoretically gets you frame accurate placement) once you match it to audio your chapter points can only go on an I-Frame, no matter what timecode you enter (depending on the authoring program used it will either go to the nearest one in either direction or the nearest one in a specific direction - forwards or backwards) unless you have arranged things in advance so you have an actual I-Frame at this exact timecode point then your chapter marker will not get created where you placed it. The ONLY exception is in DVD-A, where the track placement is frame accurate but again player lock-down & audio output might not be (and probably isn't)

Anyway - enough of this, as you most likely already worked most of this out already (it sounds as if you are doing the research, even if it is confusing at times because we are not only mixing 2 formats on one disc, but one of these is a subset of a more complex variant & authoring applications generally do not know the variant we need). Let's get back to the fun.
Attached here is a (hopefully) self explanatory starting point.

View attachment DLP2_NTSC_Template.zip

Now, it was done in an earlier build (2.31-2.5 PS Merge) but should be good. If it is awry please let me know and I will redo it on the latest build instead (which runs nicely on Windows 7 64-bit too).
I've given you 3 VMGM "menus", and these are helpfully numbered in the Connections window (the AL adds one to everything but you should ignore this when writing custom VM Commands and use their actual numbers). They are the Splash, the Main Menu & a dummy screen for accessing VTS2 from the Audio Setup menu in VTS1. Audio Setup has to go in the VTSM as a SetSTN command in a VMGM is not understood by some old players (as we learned the hard way) in the same way a LinkTailPGC pre-command is not understood by some software players, so we put the audio setup in a VTSM, make it a special menu type (the first created in a VTS is the ROOT menu (although any menu can be made the root), and you can also specify CHAPTER, AUDIO & ANGLE as well for direct access via a button) so we can address it directly from a VMGM.
The "Dummy" VMGM is addressed from the "Stereo Mix" option in "Audio Setup", and the switch is done by the pre-command in the dummy VMGM telling the player to go directly to VTS2 (you can point this to the title or to the menu)
I've added buttons to the main menu, set a trap in the splash so it only plays once by setting a GPRM and added a couple of tracks & a main menu call to surround playlist.
Audio buttons are coded, and the end actions are programmed for each audio title.
The rest you should be able to infer but please ask if something is not obvious.

I can do some animated GIF showing how to deal with menus (I build all mine in PhotoShop externally and never use the built-in menu editor because of potential Abstraction Layer issues) and how to load these & their subpicture images as well as creating button hotspots & setting visibility states (DLP has a great menu simulator) if needs be.

Hope this helps.
 

schultz1010

Active Member
Joined
Jul 14, 2015
Messages
78
I thought, briefly, about using Chrome's auto-mirror feature but I thought you'dmake mention, in another QQ thread, that wasn't a good idea (out of spec disc
being a likely or almost certain result).

Also Chrome's documentation says:

Note: Do not use Track Points (PCM or MLP) if you use Auto-Mirror- ing. The track points will not result in individual tracks in the VIDEO_TS.

That reduces the appeal / usefulness of auto-mirroring.

My hunch is that audio only tracks (and slideshows) ended up being hh:mm:ss rather than hh:mm:ss:ff (or ss.sss)
out of hasty (quick and dirty) additions rather than any technical reason.
There is the concept of a still image with a display duration (vobu still
mode, set the duration, assemble into cells, set gapless play, rinse lather repeat).

For grins and giggles I created a slide show in DVDSP - slide shows in DVDSP
can have audio two ways, one audio title spanning all the slides (and you get
to adjust the timing to the frame level for duration of each slide) or each
slide having its own audio. The KEY thing is what happens next - you
'convert slideshow to track' and now you have a VTS_xx_y with cells (chapters)
at each slide *AND* the Seamless flag is set (don't need to use PGCEdit or
myDVDEdit as with DLP). And you can use BOV once the slideshow's converted
to a track. Pretty cool!

I did try importing a DVDSP created VTS into DLP - was accepted but I wasn't sure how much
deeper I wanted to dig the hole before crawling out ;)

Too bad DVDSP and DLP didn't make a little whoopee - the progeny would have been
quite the spiffy program methinks.

Oh well - things are what they are.

1. Yes, there's the spin-up, etc time of players - grant you part of that
one. However players might wait to start output until they have the
data - thus there is a lag in plahing starting but the resolution is still
to less than 1 second. Then too skipping forward using the <next> button
within a track that's already playing is quick and most players manage it
to a lot less than one second accuracy.

2. AC3 is good to 32ms, DTS to 10.7ms and PCM to 1.7ms (http://stnsoft.com/DVD/ass-hdr.html)
and audio can span VOBUs and duration times are good to much less than 1s
So a DVD authoring package really doesn't have a technical reason
reason to not have cells with audio like you see on discs made around 2002.

3. low bitrate video is a non-starter. Default GOP size I've seen is 15 frames
which gets you .5s. BUT unless only simple mono color background with just
a couple lines of simple text is used the video space is huge/wasteful. It
only gets worse if the GOP size is dropped to increase the time resolution


But enough of all that - it's time to say thank you for the template you
posted. Thank you!

The template you provided loaded up fine into the latest 2.52 build of DLP.

WOW - I hope you didn't burn up too much of your time doing that. IF I can't
get that going (and it looks straight forward) i'll turn in my programming
badge ;)

How did you become aware of a player that couldn't do a SetSTN in a VMGM? Eek.
A long time ago? I'd have thought all the kinks were ironed out a long time
ago in DVD players. Hate to think about all the java bugs being tickled with
Blu Ray players today.

Guess I'll go buy the DLP key - been running on the 30day trial version.

Yes, there are numerous quirks and limitations in DLP but it's the "last man
standing" in the world of DVD authoring. Most of what's being sold today
is in the realm of iDVD - good for little more than putting the vacation
photos/videos onto a disc.

It would appear that DLP isn't supported any more though - most I've gotten
from the contact/support page is infrequent mail from someone's personal email

Oh, if it's not too much of an imposition could you point to a couple DVD-As
that you have done with DLP (for the video side)? Looking at a working example
is a good way to learn another (programming) language.

And yes, we're having a ton of fun :)
 
Last edited:

schultz1010

Active Member
Joined
Jul 14, 2015
Messages
78
Quick followup to the lengthy thread & journey to this point. It's been a long and strange journey but I did create a hybrid DVD-Audio disc at last. A learning curve was expected of course but what wasn't anticipated at the outset was also having to deal with so many limitations, quirks/foibles and outright bugs in the tools. The VM programming in DLP was falling off a log easy - it was getting to that point that took all the time and effort. Went with Chrome this time - for the next effort i'll give DAC a go and see how many weeks it takes to get that sorted out.

Oh, it's not "fatal" but in addition to DLP's bug of not setting the seamless flag in audio-only tracks the "callss VMGM ..." instruction gets generated incorrectly and PGCEdit complains it's "illegal" (wrong menu type - should be hex 42 instead of hex 40 in the one opcode word). Doesn't seem to hurt playback but PGCEdit (or myDVDEdit) will fix it.

So all's well that ends well for now :)
 

neil wilkes

Moderator
Joined
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Messages
4,301
Location
London, England
Quick followup to the lengthy thread & journey to this point. It's been a long and strange journey but I did create a hybrid DVD-Audio disc at last. A learning curve was expected of course but what wasn't anticipated at the outset was also having to deal with so many limitations, quirks/foibles and outright bugs in the tools. The VM programming in DLP was falling off a log easy - it was getting to that point that took all the time and effort. Went with Chrome this time - for the next effort i'll give DAC a go and see how many weeks it takes to get that sorted out.

Oh, it's not "fatal" but in addition to DLP's bug of not setting the seamless flag in audio-only tracks the "callss VMGM ..." instruction gets generated incorrectly and PGCEdit complains it's "illegal" (wrong menu type - should be hex 42 instead of hex 40 in the one opcode word). Doesn't seem to hurt playback but PGCEdit (or myDVDEdit) will fix it.

So all's well that ends well for now :)
Beware of that "seamless" flag setting as not all players support this. It's basically a software buffer to try & minimize the effects of the break.
If you can arrange things so it goes between playlists so much the better. "Seamless" does not matter unless the break is in an actual playlist & even then only on a segued track.

CallSS VMGM is a post command after a playlist is ended - if you name the menu correctly, no problem so:
CallSS VMGM (pgc 2 rsm_cell 1) will take you to the second "pink" menu in the VMGM area of the disc layout table.....the auto command sets to rsm_cell 0 which is wrong.
You also have to watch the title menu as well - if you have a trap set to fall past a splash, setting title menu pre command will cause the disc to fail in some soft players (it will loop endlessly, and never start playback)

PGCEdit is a "must have" tool if authoring DVD.
 

schultz1010

Active Member
Joined
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Messages
78
Beware of that "seamless" flag setting as not all players support this. It's basically a software buffer to try & minimize the effects of the break.
If you can arrange things so it goes between playlists so much the better. "Seamless" does not matter unless the break is in an actual playlist & even then only on a segued track.

CallSS VMGM is a post command after a playlist is ended - if you name the menu correctly, no problem so:
CallSS VMGM (pgc 2 rsm_cell 1) will take you to the second "pink" menu in the VMGM area of the disc layout table.....the auto command sets to rsm_cell 0 which is wrong.
You also have to watch the title menu as well - if you have a trap set to fall past a splash, setting title menu pre command will cause the disc to fail in some soft players (it will loop endlessly, and never start playback)

PGCEdit is a "must have" tool if authoring DVD.
If the Abstraction Layer is turned off it's 'pgc 1' rather than 'pgc 2' - at least that's what I saw being needed and what ended up working. w/o the AL the VMGM is pgc1, isn't it?

According to http://stnsoft.com/DVD/vmi30081.html the only valid type of menu in the VMGM is 2 thus the code should be 42 and not 40 for byte 5. DLP generated
30 08 00 00 01 40 00 00 when it should be generating 30 08 00 00 01 42 00 00 PGCEdit complained but (or myDVDEdit) would correct that to 42 in byte 5.

It's another one of those cases where the specs say one thing but the actual implementations don't seem to pay any attention.

So far every single disc I've looked at has the seamless flag set between cells. DVDSP set it in all the discs too. I've a hard time seeing something so basic not being nigh unto universal correct.implementation. I recall reading a couple other threads you've posted and gathered that NOT setting the seamless flag was usually considered a bug.

Yeah, a pre command on a Title menu feels a bit iffy to me.
 
Last edited:

neil wilkes

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So far every single disc I've looked at has the seamless flag set between cells.
And if you know this is okay on your player, that's great - but if you are replicating and/or are not sure then leave it alone.
warning08.png
Warning from IMGBurn dialogue attached above, and the reality of DVD is compromise - we have to be fully (or as far as possible) compliant with older players as this compliance is the only reason we bother with a Video_TS at all.
The "seamless" flag supposedly adds a small amount of data into the player buffer - it's basically a "look-ahead" switch to try & minimize the break effects and again in reality most modern players do not need this flag to be set and older ones would be much happier if it were not set. If your layer break is not on a cell - and this is by far the better option - then it is irrelevant anyway, and indeed cannot be seamless unless it is located in a playlist/VOB that contains the actual title multiplex.

Re VMGM PGC number - where did I make the error? I said that "CallSS VMGM (pgc 2 rsm_cell 1) would take you to the second "pink" menu in the VMGM area", and this is correct.
VMGM is not a menu in itself - in DLP with no AL, the VMGM PGC are indeed numbered from 1 onwards (how else could we do it?)
 

schultz1010

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Messages
78
Ah but that's the LAYER BREAK cell - s special case that yes is left alone unless you're creating a dual layer disc and know what you're doing.

I was talking about the normal Seamless Playback flag you see on every cell in a PGC except the first cell. Take a look at the cells on the Carly Simon disc, Linda Ronstadt disc, or the Beatles LOVE disc - every one of them has the Seamless Playback (NOT the layer break) cell flag set:

Untitled.jpg

PGCEDit will look similar of course. That's a completely different flag than the layer break one. Cells in a PGC are usually seamless based on looking at any number of them that are professionally created and replicated. Different beast than the layer switch seamless flag.

well, in the VMG I had there was only PGC 1 so it didn't seem right to use pgc2 in the CallSS - thus my confusion. DLP did generate a 40 instead of a 42 - which didn't seem to hurt playback but I fixed it anyways.

And yes, we're having fun :)

And if you know this is okay on your player, that's great - but if you are replicating and/or are not sure then leave it alone.
View attachment 21764
Warning from IMGBurn dialogue attached above, and the reality of DVD is compromise - we have to be fully (or as far as possible) compliant with older players as this compliance is the only reason we bother with a Video_TS at all.
The "seamless" flag supposedly adds a small amount of data into the player buffer - it's basically a "look-ahead" switch to try & minimize the break effects and again in reality most modern players do not need this flag to be set and older ones would be much happier if it were not set. If your layer break is not on a cell - and this is by far the better option - then it is irrelevant anyway, and indeed cannot be seamless unless it is located in a playlist/VOB that contains the actual title multiplex.

Re VMGM PGC number - where did I make the error? I said that "CallSS VMGM (pgc 2 rsm_cell 1) would take you to the second "pink" menu in the VMGM area", and this is correct.
VMGM is not a menu in itself - in DLP with no AL, the VMGM PGC are indeed numbered from 1 onwards (how else could we do it?)
 

schultz1010

Active Member
Joined
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Messages
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Ah but that's the LAYER BREAK cell - s special case that yes is left alone unless you're creating a dual layer disc and know what you're doing.

I was talking about the normal Seamless Playback flag you see on every cell in a PGC except the first cell. Take a look at the cells on the Carly Simon disc, Linda Ronstadt disc, or the Beatles LOVE disc - every one of them has the Seamless Playback (NOT the layer break) cell flag set:

View attachment 21767

PGCEDit will look similar of course. That's a completely different flag than the layer break one. Cells in a PGC are usually seamless based on looking at any number of them that are professionally created and replicated. Different beast than the layer switch seamless flag.

well, in the VMG I had there was only PGC 1 so it didn't seem right to use pgc2 in the CallSS - thus my confusion. DLP did generate a 40 instead of a 42 - which didn't seem to hurt playback but I fixed it anyways.

The mention of 2nd pink menu seemed strange so I went back and looked. I only see 1 pink box. I did get new spectacles just 4 months ago so I think I can count pink menus :) and I only see 1 (pgc1) in the project:

dlp.jpg

And yes, we're having fun :)

And if you know this is okay on your player, that's great - but if you are replicating and/or are not sure then leave it alone.
View attachment 21764
Warning from IMGBurn dialogue attached above, and the reality of DVD is compromise - we have to be fully (or as far as possible) compliant with older players as this compliance is the only reason we bother with a Video_TS at all.
The "seamless" flag supposedly adds a small amount of data into the player buffer - it's basically a "look-ahead" switch to try & minimize the break effects and again in reality most modern players do not need this flag to be set and older ones would be much happier if it were not set. If your layer break is not on a cell - and this is by far the better option - then it is irrelevant anyway, and indeed cannot be seamless unless it is located in a playlist/VOB that contains the actual title multiplex.

Re VMGM PGC number - where did I make the error? I said that "CallSS VMGM (pgc 2 rsm_cell 1) would take you to the second "pink" menu in the VMGM area", and this is correct.
VMGM is not a menu in itself - in DLP with no AL, the VMGM PGC are indeed numbered from 1 onwards (how else could we do it?)
 
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alk3997

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Looks like it's about 6 months after you both (Neil and Shultz1010) wrote all this explanation. This is really helpful! I've been using the shortcut method with DLP (having it create the AL) to create quick Video_TS files for DVD-Audio discs. That method produces warnings in Chrome II so I thought I'd take some time to try to eliminate those and try without an abstraction layer.

Just getting started but wanted to say thank you for taking the time to post all the hints, explanations and the template. We'll see how this attempt goes...

Andy
 

schultz1010

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Looks like it's about 6 months after you both (Neil and Shultz1010) wrote all this explanation. This is really helpful! I've been using the shortcut method with DLP (having it create the AL) to create quick Video_TS files for DVD-Audio discs. That method produces warnings in Chrome II so I thought I'd take some time to try to eliminate those and try without an abstraction layer.

Just getting started but wanted to say thank you for taking the time to post all the hints, explanations and the template. We'll see how this attempt goes...

Andy
You're welcome - thanks for the kind words.

The thread faded away only a little quicker than the dvd-a format itself ;)

In the time since the last postings I've created several "hybrid" discs using Chrome & DLP. It was not nearly as difficult as I thought it would be without the AL (but then I did spend a lot of time doing assembly language programming in the computer world years ago). It *is* difficult, verging on impossible to debug/simulate the video_ts because the debugger assumes you're using the AL (which affects the numbering of the PGCs).

My feeling is, and it was mentioned by Neil in another thread, that unless you're sending the disc out for replication / verification then those warnings are harmless - the commands triggering the warnings won't be used by DVD-Audio players.

For me the key "ah ha" moment in the programming was: hitting the MENU button (on the remote) jumps to the Root menu of the current VTS and hitting the TITLE button goes to the VMG Title menu (PGC1). After that the rest of the button selection, menu hopping and so on was simple and straightforward. Oh, the other thing was that menu stills need to be left at 720x540 because DLP will scale them internally but external sub pictures (for highlights, etc) need to be 720x480 (squished).

Here's a screen shot of the DLP project I recently completed. There's a splash screen that shows for 5 seconds and then playback of the Dolby Digital track begins. There is a song/track select menu and an audio (dolby or dts) select menu. All in all it's not very complicated and works very nicely. I put the DTS stream in a second VTS (with a dummy AC3 stream for technical compliance) rather than as a 2nd stream in the 1st VTS. That's because from the AUDIO_TS side Chrome doesn't allow you to specify which audio stream to play from a VIDEO_TS title.


fillmore-dlp.jpg

If you think the actual DLP project would be helpful I can post that - it's about 4MB, all you should have to do is insert your own media assets and create/edit the sub pics
 
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alk3997

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You're welcome - thanks for the kind words.

The thread faded away only a little quicker than the dvd-a format itself ;)

In the time since the last postings I've created several "hybrid" discs using Chrome & DLP. It was not nearly as difficult as I thought it would be without the AL (but then I did spend a lot of time doing assembly language programming in the computer world years ago). It *is* difficult, verging on impossible to debug/simulate the video_ts because the debugger assumes you're using the AL (which affects the numbering of the PGCs).

My feeling is, and it was mentioned by Neil in another thread, that unless you're sending the disc out for replication / verification then those warnings are harmless - the commands triggering the warnings won't be used by DVD-Audio players.

For me the key "ah ha" moment in the programming was: hitting the MENU button (on the remote) jumps to the Root menu of the current VTS and hitting the TITLE button goes to the VMG Title menu (PGC1). After that the rest of the button selection, menu hopping and so on was simple and straightforward. Oh, the other thing was that menu stills need to be left at 720x540 because DLP will scale them internally but external sub pictures (for highlights, etc) need to be 720x480 (squished).

Here's a screen shot of the DLP project I recently completed. There's a splash screen that shows for 5 seconds and then playback of the Dolby Digital track begins. There is a song/track select menu and an audio (dolby or dts) select menu. All in all it's not very complicated and works very nicely. I put the DTS stream in a second VTS (with a dummy AC3 stream for technical compliance) rather than as a 2nd stream in the 1st VTS. That's because from the AUDIO_TS side Chrome doesn't allow you to specify which audio stream to play from a VIDEO_TS title.

...

If you think the actual DLP project would be helpful I can post that - it's about 4MB, all you should have to do is insert your own media assets and create/edit the sub pics
I think we're doing something very similar. I was going to use ASCII graphics but decided it might be easier to see with a JPG :)

This is my current structure, which I use DLP to generate the Video_TS file. It's basically designed to start the first track anytime the DVD-Video program is selected. There are two menus for the album and one for bonus tracks. The menus are duplicated for DTS audio. The difference between the Dolby Digital and DTS menus is an arrow pointing to the Dolby Digital or DTS indicator. This way when DTS is selected, the menu structure branches to the DTS menus.

Sample DLP Menu Structure.JPG

This works for all the players I've tried but, as we know, I get two warning messages (one album, one bonus) with Chrome II and it's not perfectly within spec because AL is still enabled. Obviously without AL enabled there is no menu structure, although the album will play the first time.

I'm going to take your very helpful structure JPG and try to apply it to my structure. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. And, thanks for the quick response earlier. I've been studying the graphic to see how to map it to what I have.

I suspect this is one of those things that makes a lot more sense after you do it once. I've done Blu-Ray disc programming in a similar manner but never dove into DVD programming.

BTW, I learned to program inputting operators and operands into a TI programmable calculator. In school our programming class was 360 assembler and I've programmed 80386 chips in assembler for graphics primitives and 68000 assembler in grad school. Unfortunately, in all of the resumes' I see at jobs fairs in the last year, I think I've seen one resume' with assembler as a skill. It's just not taught anymore, unfortunately. It's a skill that makes you a better programmer in higher order languages and OOP. Sorry, you got me off topic!

I'm going to try to get some time on Sunday to try to merge your instructions with my structure.


Andy
 

alk3997

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I figured I'd try to climb the learning hill by simplifying the structure. So I reduced it to one movie and one menu. This way I can learn on something easy and work up from there.

Simplified Structure 03202016.jpg

I used PGCEdit for some initial debug and then ran the Video_TS using PowerDVD, so I didn't need to burn a disc first. With PowerDVD, the album starts and plays correctly. I can choose, using the audio key, Dolby Digital or DTS. However, if I try either Title Menu or Root Menu keys, the programming must have errors since PowerDVD stops playing.

Do you see anything obvious I'm doing? I'm assuming TT must equal 1 since there is only one title. I think I understand what you are doing with the general registers but I'm not entirely sure I understand the pgc numbers.

I'm also assuming that any commands that are shaded mean they are in the abstraction layer and I don't need to worry about changing those.

Andy
 

schultz1010

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I figured I'd try to climb the learning hill by simplifying the structure. So I reduced it to one movie and one menu. This way I can learn on something easy and work up from there.
Good idea to simplify.

I used PGCEdit for some initial debug and then ran the Video_TS using PowerDVD, so I didn't need to burn a disc first. With PowerDVD, the album starts and plays correctly. I can choose, using the audio key, Dolby Digital or DTS. However, if I try either Title Menu or Root Menu keys, the programming must have errors since PowerDVD stops playing.

Do you see anything obvious I'm doing? I'm assuming TT must equal 1 since there is only one title. I think I understand what you are doing with the general registers but I'm not entirely sure I understand the pgc numbers.
PowerDVD will play the VIDEO_TS portion but AUDIO_TS capability was removed beginning with PowerDVD version 9.

Yes, I see what you have overlooked and didn't take into account. I alluded to it earlier when I complained about not being able to debug using DLP's builtin simulator.

DLP has a hidden PGC1. If you see 'red' numbers for the PGC numbers then you will notice they start with 2. BUT when you turn off the AL the numbers change - 2 becomes 1, 3 becomes 2 and so on.

Read this, especially the last couple paragraphs at the bottom:

http://mediachance.com/dvdlab/Helppro/abslayer.htm

this is a close up view of the example I posted earlier showing the menu bar - NOTE the "pgc" button is "in" (pressed) and the pgc numbers are red starting at 2. THese are the numbers that the AL uses!

hiddenpgc.jpg

now press/click that 'pgc' button and watch the numbers change to- both the starting point (1) and color (black). This is WITHOUT the AL - and THESE are the numbers you need to use when you are going to turn OFF the AL at compile time:

nohiddenpgc.jpg

If you are planning to turn off the AL then you need to take into account that PGCs start at 1 and NOT at 2 (there is no hidden PGC1 if the AL is turned off).

I made PGC1 be the 'splash screen' (VMGM PGC1) and the main menu is VMGM PGC2. When the TITLE button is hit transfer goes to PGC1, the flag is checked and the splash screen is skipped over and control goes to PGC2.

I'm also assuming that any commands that are shaded mean they are in the abstraction layer and I don't need to worry about changing those.

Andy
Correct - and if you select an object and then click the cyan VM button on the tool bar you will toggle the visibility of the VM commands - one of the states is to completely collapse the shaded area so the AL commands don't show up.

I was going to post the complete project from DLP but apparently it's too large at about 4MB (looks like DLP embedded all but the actual audio files). Sigh.
 

0tto

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may i ask you guys, why do you so much stuck to Hybrid DVD-A/V if seems nowaday more sense will be to go BD-A route?
 

sukothai

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When they have a reasonable BD-A surround capable player for the car, I will make the move.
 

alk3997

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When they have a reasonable BD-A surround capable player for the car, I will make the move.
Exactly. I can make one DVD-Audio hybrid disc and it works at home and in the car. Surround everywhere. If I wasn't trying to make the disc compliant, I could make the hybrid disc in less than 1/2 a day. I'm hoping once I understand all of the programming nuances that a compliant hybrid disc will take about the same time as I had spent on the non-compliant discs.

I use BDAuthor for BD and BD-3D authoring with DTS-HD MA. Takes about 1/2 a day to author the disc once all the elements are made. But, I can only play that at home. The really nice thing about the BD discs with DTS-HD MA is that it only needs one audio track for 2-channel and multichannel. It simplifies menu setup.

But, both BD and DVD-Audio produce the same sound quality so really it's a matter of convenience and compatibility and, right now, DVD-Audio hybrid discs have the greatest compatibility.

Andy
 

0tto

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actually i'd seen on amazon BD disk players for car although i'm not much know about practical side of playback surround by this units in the car.
seems mass market didn't catch much interest in such thus seems more chances for upcoming car gadgets with ability to play HiRez and surround
from micro storages such like memory cards and USB than decent optical drive units with BD playback.
 

0tto

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I use BDAuthor for BD and BD-3D authoring with DTS-HD MA. Takes about 1/2 a day to author the disc once all the elements are made. But, I can only play that at home. The really nice thing about the BD discs with DTS-HD MA is that it only needs one audio track for 2-channel and multichannel. It simplifies menu setup.

Andy
what can you tell about this app?
i had seen the site but all that information about BDAuthor so not impressive.
the free version, which i guess supposed to show what it is, absolutely crap and does nothing,
beside you install it, look at it and delete from your PC
 
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