iTunes and DRM

Sunday, June 4th, 2017 11:21 pm
darkoshi: (Default)
I finally managed to buy that song I wanted from iTunes.

I never want to go through that much trouble to buy a song again, even if, like this one, IAMX's I Come With Knives, I really want to support the artist for making such a wonderful song and video. Maybe, if an MP3 of the song had been available to purchase on the band's website, or on Amazon, it wouldn't have taken me over 4 years to buy it.

The band's website only has the full album available, and only as a CD, not MP3s. Some of the other albums are available as MP3s, but not that one. Likewise, Amazon only has the full album on CD. The MP3 version seems to be a single instead, as it only has 4 songs, of which 3 are different versions of "Unified Field". The only place I found the song I wanted was on iTunes.

The plus of it was that the iTunes price was in GBP, not dollars. So I got to use up some of that GBP balance I still had left over on my PayPal account.

The 2 TV show episodes that I wanted to buy are also priced in GBP, which would have been another plus. But after doing some research, it seems that if I bought them, they'd be in MV4 format, which I'd only be able to play on that desktop computer from inside iTunes. Because of the DRM, I wouldn't be able to play them on my normal laptop (without iTunes), nor even on the TV (no, that computer doesn't have an HDMI port). So I won't be buying them after all. There's only so much I'm willing to put up with. Sure, maybe I could use some software to strip out the DRM from the files in order to play them on my other devices without iTunes, but that would defeat the whole point of buying them legally.

Video/DVD notes

Saturday, January 2nd, 2010 12:33 am
darkoshi: (Default)
(Warning: The following is my current understanding on these topics based on what I read, but I don't claim nor guarantee that my understanding is correct.)

The DVD standard is 720x480 pixels for NTSC and 720x576 for PAL. Video is stored on DVDs in that resolution, regardless of whether the video is intended to be displayed on 4:3 screens (like old TVs) or 16:9 screens (widescreens). When the video is recorded in anamorphic widescreen mode, the camera spreads the 720 horizontal pixels out over a wider area, as opposed to when recording in non-widescreen mode. So with anamorphic widescreen mode, you gain a wider view, but it doesn't have more details compared to non-widescreen mode (it actually has fewer details per horizontal unit than non-widescreen).

The pixels displayed on the viewing screen are not square in size. The pixel aspect ratio defines the width versus height of a displayed pixel.

When widescreen video is recorded/stored on a DVD in non-anamorphic mode, that is letterbox mode, with black bars at the top and bottom. Letterbox mode video has less vertical detail compared to anamorphic widescreen mode.

In interlaced mode, one "frame" contains data for two "fields"... where the fields are more distinct points in time. There is an odd field and an even field - the data for both is interlaced together; one line of the frame is from one field, the next line from the other field, and so on. The camera would have captured 2 images (fields) of data and interlaced them into a single frame of stored data, with half the data from each point in time. The camera may record at 60 frames per second to produce the 2 fields for each frame, even though the TV displays at 30 frames per second.

Video should only be saved in interlaced mode when it is intended to be displayed on a television. For viewing on computers, it should be saved in progressive (=non-interlaced) mode. This may require de-interlacing of the source data.

In Sony Vegas Movie Studio, one blog says it's best to set the project properties with
Field Order = Upper Field First (This depends on how the recording device stored the data. For DV devices (digital video cameras?), it should be lower field first).
Full-Res Rendering quality = Best
Deinterlace method = Interpolate

(Don't save snapshots/still images from within Vegas; some lines get jagged edges apparently related to interlacing; I can't figure out how to prevent that. Instead play the video in WMP, pause it, and do a screen capture.)

Notes compiled from information on the following pages.

http://eugenia.gnomefiles.org/2007/10/30/understanding-pixel-aspect-ratios/
http://eugenia.gnomefiles.org/2007/09/10/de-interlacing-with-vegas/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anamorphic_widescreen
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pixel_aspect_ratio
http://www.michaeldvd.com.au/Articles/PALvsNTSC/PALvsNTSC.asp
http://library.creativecow.net/articles/onneweer_barend/deinterlacing.php

(no subject)

Sunday, December 7th, 2008 04:20 am
darkoshi: (Default)
every fucking time. stupid technology. stupid .mov files. and now its 4:20am and I still don't have my feckin vid file converted. audio keeps messing up in WMM. and hopefully I didn't put any viruses on q's computer, installing all those programs trying to get the file converted into a good format. feh! 4:23 fecking am. Will I fall asleep and stay asleep for 8 hrs now, eh? how feckin hard can it be to fecking download a vid from a camera and convert it into a format that WMM will accept, without making the audio all fecking tinny, eh? Fee fie foh FUM.

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