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Using iMovie, MediaPipe and Sizzle to create a DVD Apps
I am one of the unfortunate PowerBook users that does not have an internal DVD burner, so I can not use iDVD. I have not seen any reference to Sizzle for authoring DVD's so I thought I'd share my experience. I used a combination of iMovie, MediaPipe, and Sizzle to burn home movies from my DVD camcorder to a DVD that plays in a standard DVD player.

The process of creating a DVD movie is all very new to me, so I do not claim to be an expert at all. Although the following steps work, they are somewhat tedious and time-consuming so I am sure there is a better and/or easier way to achieve the same results. All feedback is welcome!

[robg adds: This may be the most complex formatting job I've ever done for a hint published here; any errors in the structure that may follow are my fault. I compared the original to my formatted version many times, but it's still possible I messed something up...]

The Process:
  1. Download and install the following required software:

    1. MediaPipe. To install, use the "MediaPipe System Intsall.mpkg" and not "MediaPipe Local Install.mpkg."

    2. Sizzle. To install, just drag it to your Applications folder.

  2. Use iMovie to create each DVD chapter:

    1. Using iMovie, import all the video clips from your camcorder into a single directory. For the purpose of these directions, I will use ~/Movies/Clips.

    2. Create a directory and iMovie project for each future "chapter" on the DVD. For example, you may have ~/Movies/Birthday, ~/Movies/Easter and ~/Movies/Christmas.

    3. For each of these iMovie projects, use File -> Import to copy the desired clips from the ~/Movies/Clips/Media directory. Edit the iMovie as desired. Since each movie will be eventually played right after one another, I added a "Fade in" transition and title before the first clip and a "Fade out" transition after the last clip.

    4. For each movie, export the audio to a Wave file. To do this, select File -> Export, and under Export, select "To QuickTime". Under Formats, select "Expert Settings..." then click Export.

      At the next screen, select "Sound to Wave" for the Export option at the bottom of the window. Save the Wave file in the project directory using the same name as the directory and iMovie project file. It is important they all have the same name for some future steps. For example, inside each project directory, you should have the following files:

      • ~/Movies/Birthday/Birthday
      • ~/Movies/Birthday/
      • ~/Movies/Birthday/Birthday.wav

      The first file is the actual iMovie project file. The .mov file is automatically created by iMovie. The .wav file is the audio export you just created.

    Repeat the last two steps for each of the iMovie projects.

  3. Use MediaPipe to process the audio and video from iMovie:

    1. Create a ~/Movies/DVD directory, and use this for MediaPipe's "Output Path..." setting.

    2. Open MediaPipe and add the following components:

      • File Browser - select the "~/Movies/" file
      • QuickTime Decoder
      • MPEG Encoder - click "Generate arguments" and configure as follows:
        • Stream Type: DVD
        • Frame Rate: NTSC Video
        • Aspect Ration: 4:3
        • BitRate: 3800
        • Interlace Mode: Interlaced & Top
        • H/Quality Filter: OFF
        • Leave everything else as default

    3. Once you click "OK" and "OK," click the arrow next to "MPEG Encoder." You should see the following pipes and values:

      • [mpeg2enc] -v 0 -f 8 -F 4 -n n -a 2 -b 3800 -I 1 -r 16 -q 3 -Q 2
      • [ppmtoy4m] -v 0 -S 420_mpeg2 -L -I t -F 2997:100 -A 8:9

    4. Click "Launch CLI." A terminal window should open and process the video using the command line programs included as part of MediaPipe. Once the process has completed, it should have created a ~/Movies/DVD/Birthday.mpv file.

    5. Start a new MediaPipe project to process the audio extracted in the earlier step using the following components:

      • File Browser - select the "~/Movies/Birthday/Birthday.wav" file
      • QuickTime Audio Decoder
      • MP2 Encoder - click the arrow and confirm the following pipe and default settings: [mp2enc] -b 256 -r 48000 -s.

    6. Click "Launch CLI." A terminal window should open and process the audio using the command line programs included as part of MediaPipe. Once the process has completed, it should have created a ~/Movies/DVD/Birthday.mp2 file.

  4. Use "Sizzle" to create a DVD image:

    1. Select "~/Movies/DVD" for the "Output Path..."

    2. Under the "Disc" tab, use the following defaults:

      • Aspect Ration: 4:3
      • Video System: NTSC
      • Video Format: 720x480 (NTSC D1)

    3. Under the "Chapters" tab, select the audio file and video from the ~/Movies/DVD directory:

      • The "Input Format" should be "M2V: MPEG-2 Elementary Streams".
      • Select "Video Track" next to "View/edit files for track:"
      • Select "~/Movies/DVD/Birthday.mpv"
      • Select "Audio Track 1 (MP2)" next to "View/edit files for track:"
      • Select "~/Movies/DVD/Birthday.mpv"
      • Click "Add Chapter".

      Repeat this last step for each set of video / audio files created in previous steps.

    4. Under the "Disc" tab, enter "DVD" for "Disc Label, then click "Create Disc Image." The output file should be "~/Movies/DVD/DVD.img"

  5. Use DVD Player to view the DVD movie:

    1. Double click on the ~/Movies/DVD/DVD.img" file to mount the disc image.

    2. Open DVD Player, select, File -> Open VIDEO_TS Folder then navigate to the VIDEO_TS folder on the image mounted in the previous step.

  6. Use Disk Copy to burn the DVD image:

    1. Open Disk Copy, select File -> Burn Image then select ~/Movies/DVD/DVD.img.
That's it! The end result should be a DVD that can be played in a regular DVD player. For testing purposes, I used a DVD-RW. Depending on your DVD player, the DVD-RW may or may not work.

  1. By selecting the default iMovie .mov file, you avoid the time consuming process of having to use iMovie to export to a QuickTime movie.

  2. The default .mov file dimensions created by iMovie is 761x570. The default video size for Sizzle is 720x480. I believe MediaPipe is adjusting the movie size when it creates the .mpv file, but I'm not sure. Either way, it has not been a problem and the end result looks just fine.
The most tedious and time-consuming part for me was using MediaPipe to compress the video and audio files. Since MediaPipe is just a GUI front end for a series of command line programs, I wrote a simple script (see below) using the commands generated when you press the "Launch CLI" button. The following script depends on the iMovie directory, project fie, and .mov file all having the same name. All you have to do is add the directory names in the 'for MOVIE' loop, and each iMovie will be processed using the options described above.

proc_movie () {

# Process video - this is one continuous line - replace each line break with a "space"
/usr/local/bin/mediapipe -pipeline -d "~/Movies/DVD"  "File Browser"
"Path"="~/Movies/$MOVIE/$" ! "QuickTime Decoder" ! "MPEG Encoder"
"mpeg2enc"="-v 0 -f 8 -F 4 -n n -a 2 -b 3800 -I 1 -r 16 -q 3 -Q 2" "ppmtoy4m"="-v 0 -S
420_mpeg2 -L -I t -F 2997:100 -A 8:9"

# Process audio - this is one continuous line - replace each line break with a "space"
/usr/local/bin/mediapipe -pipeline -d "~/Movies/DVD"  "File Browser"
"Path"="~/Movies/$MOVIE/$MOVIE.wav" ! "QuickTime Audio Decoder" !
"MP2 Encoder" "mp2enc"="-b 256 -r 48000 -s"


for MOVIE in Birthday Easter Christmas
As I said before, there is no doubt an easier and/or better way to achieve the same results (excluding iDVD) but this is what I have so far. I just got this to work yesterday so this is definitely "work in progress". If anyone knows a better way to accomplish the same thing, please let me know!
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Using iMovie, MediaPipe and Sizzle to create a DVD | 5 comments | Create New Account
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Using iMovie, MediaPipe and Sizzle to create a DVD
Authored by: nvdingo on Apr 28, '03 01:35:08PM

Possible typo?
Section 4.ii
Video Format: 72x480 (NTSC D1)

be 720 instead?

[ Reply to This | # ]
Authored by: robg on Apr 28, '03 02:22:02PM

I just fixed it; I can't imagine that 72 was right. I probably dropped the '0' while editing.


[ Reply to This | # ]
Using iMovie, MediaPipe and Sizzle to create a DVD
Authored by: CaptCosmic on Apr 28, '03 11:46:33PM

Another Typo, 4.iii. Importing the audio should probably by
Birthday.mp2, not Birthday.mpv.

Capt Cosmic

[ Reply to This | # ]
Using iMovie, MediaPipe and Sizzle to create a DVD
Authored by: bluehz on Apr 29, '03 02:13:23AM

Thx for this great tutorial. After struggling with VCD's, SVCD,
and the like for the last few year - it nice to see all these new
user friendly apps appearing. The whole process is still very
black magic - but its getting better.

BTW - I suspect you can also use the above process to create
what are called miniDVD's. These are DVD's created on standard
CD-R(W) media. They have some drawbacks - smaller size,
smaller data rates, etc - but in general they are a great way to
create littel DVD's complete with menus accesscible through
your remote just like commercial DVD's and iDVD.

Also there is a great little app for creating VCD/SVCD's that has
been flying under the radar for a while. It called "VCD Builder"
and you can get it here I
don't know what kind of magic it does - but I have been able to
create VCD slideshows using it and they play on a very old set
top DVD player that refuses to play any other VCD/SVCD/
miniDVD's I make. Grab a copy of it - its donation driven also.

[ Reply to This | # ]
Authored by: jecwobble on Apr 29, '03 01:47:34PM

Based on the instructions at the Sizzle site, I tried to make a miniDVD (although I had no idea that's what they were called until reading this post). I used CD-RW media, and it seemed to work on my MAC just fine. On an NT laptop I have from work, it ran, but at an accelerated rate. My cheapo DVD/VCR player wouldn't play it, nor would a friends 'name brand' DVD player.

Has anyone been successful in creating a miniDVD on a Mac (with or without Sizzle) that worked on some or most commercial DVD players (or even game consoles- Playstation, etc.)? I want to share short MPEGs and slide shows with my family and don't like wasting all the empty gigs on a DVD-R for less than 10 minutes of material.

P.S. - I had some trouble syncing the video and audio (I had MPEGs to begin with but demuxed them for Sizzle- do I have to do that, I wonder?....)

[ Reply to This | # ]