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Record any video stream to disk using VLC
Authored by: victory on Nov 06, '04 04:40:00AM
Hi, I'm not the original poster, but I thought I'd chime in with a few comments about playing RealMedia files. I should add that I'm about to give the worst kind of advice -- the kind that involves passing along info that I've read about but never actually tried (yet).

  • First off, looking through the docs of VLC 0.8.0, I don't see any indication that it is yet able to play RealVideo-encoded files (of course the videolan site states that the current documentation is out of date for the 0.8.0 release. However, I don't even find a reference to this capability in the CHANGES file included with VLC). I suspect VLC can't play RealVideo files for the usual reasons: The RealVideo codecs are proprietary and either legal and/or technical issues make reverse-engineering it difficult or impossible.
  • If VLC does play certain *.rm files, might this possibly be due to the fact that the file being viewed is 1) not actually a RealMedia-encoded file, despite being named with an .rm extension? or 2) it contains data encoded with some other codec (i.e. not actually encoded with the RealVideo codecs)? In otherwords, is the RealMedia format also a 'container format' that can use other (non-Real) codecs, much the way Quicktime and .AVI does? If so, then perhaps the *.rm file in question is playable under VLC because it isn't actually using RealVideo-encoded data but something such as MPEG-1 video, that VLC knows how to decode. (I realize usually isn't the case)
  • It happens that there is another app, MPlayer that will play RealVideo (v1/v2/v3/v4) files -- except that you have to borrow the decoder component from the actual RealOne Player app. See here for more info. NOTE: This is a similar techique to the hint posted by Durandal that allows Safari to play RealVideo streams.

    I don't know if MPlayer will allow transcoding to a different format the way VLC does.

Anyhow, I hope that these pointers at least give others a headstart in figuring things out. It would be great if there were an simple and solid method to transcode RealVideo files to something a bit more friendly. (I've seen such tools on the Windows-side but nothing under OSX as of yet)

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...a correction about Realvideo files
Authored by: victory on Nov 06, '04 05:13:27AM
...and I'm replying to my own comment. A correction:

The previously mentioned MPlayer app is a cmd-line utility. While this may be what some folks want, I imagine the rest will be interested in the GUI-based MPlayerOSX instead. You will still need to d/l and install the RealVideo codecs from the Real/Helix site separately. (Instructions are in the *.txt files that come with the MPlayerOSX app)

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...and yet ANOTHER followup. RealVideo conversion found!
Authored by: victory on Nov 06, '04 06:16:09AM
...*sigh*. Hopefully in the future there will be a way for guests to edit their own posted comments. Either that or I really need stop and think before I post comments.

Anyhow, it turns out that there *is* a simple way to convert *.rm files to AVI-DIVX/MPEG/etc. that I had completely forgotten about: ffmpegX. While it's a nice GUI-based app, the installation is a bit involved since there are 4 files (including the Realvideo libs) that the user must d/l and install themselves, due to license issues.

NOTE:There is an ongoing discussion as to whether or not the use of the Real/Helix libraries are allowed for transcoding purposes. Consult the Real's click-thru EULA prior to d/l-ing if this concerns you]

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Record any video stream to disk using VLC
Authored by: volltubel on Mar 02, '06 01:39:26PM

Thanks for the hint about MPlayer and rm-files. I did exactly what you suggested , only MPlayer doesn't play RealVideo streams - at least not with me.



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