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Ripping the content of a DVD

How to rip the video and audio streams

This recipe uses the lsdvd and vobcopy programs, which are found in the Debian packages of the same names (verified on Debian 10 Buster).

First you need to list the content (chapters) of the video DVD:

Disc Title: MY_DVD_1_DISC1
Title: 01, Length: 00:00:00.580 Chapters: 01, Cells: 01, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 00
Title: 02, Length: 00:00:14.000 Chapters: 01, Cells: 01, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 00
Title: 03, Length: 00:43:32.330 Chapters: 05, Cells: 05, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 01
Title: 04, Length: 00:42:12.320 Chapters: 05, Cells: 06, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 01
Title: 05, Length: 00:44:45.840 Chapters: 05, Cells: 06, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 01
Title: 06, Length: 00:41:55.370 Chapters: 05, Cells: 05, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 01
Longest track: 03

You can also list the content of an ISO image mounted elewhere:

lsdvd /mnt/

Then you can rip the required track (e.g. #3) as a single (large) file. The -i parameter will accept the DVD device name or the directory containing the DVD structure:

vobcopy -n 3 -i /dev/dvd --large-file -o ./dstdir

The resulting VOB file will contains also the subtitles, if any.

How to rip subtitles from the DVD

This recipe uses the mplayer, mencoder, vobsub2srt and tesseract-ocr programs, from the Debian packages of the same names (tested with Debian 10 Buster, vobsub2srt comes from the deb-multimedia repository). To improve OCR performance on subtitle images you may install the local language package for tesseract, eg. tesseract-ocr-ita for Italian.

Suppose that we have the DVD structure mounted under /mnt. If you have instead the physical disk, substitute /mnt with the DVD device in the commands.

We can use mplayer to identify the subtitles available into the track #1 (we identify subtitle SID #0):

mplayer -dvd-device /mnt dvd://1 -identify
number of subtitles on disk: 1

Suppose that the DVD track is #1 (specified via the dvd:// option) and the subtitle index is #0 (specified via the -sid option), use mencoder to extract the subtitle index file and the subtitle bitmaps file, in the following example the files will be vobsubs-it.idx and vobsubs-it.sub respectively:

mencoder -dvd-device /mnt dvd://1  \
    -nosound \
    -ovc 'copy' -o /dev/null \
    -ifo /mnt/VIDEO_TS/VTS_01_0.IFO \
    -sid 0 -vobsubout vobsubs-it

The .IFO file is required to know the palette to apply to the bitmaps.

The following command, working on the two files vobsubs-it.idx and vobsubs-it.sub, will do the OCR on each subtitle image using tesseract (it requires several minutes to run):

vobsub2srt \
    --ifo /mnt/VIDEO_TS/VIDEO_TS.IFO \
    --dump-images \
    --tesseract-lang ita \

The result will be a text file, containing the subtitles text and timing information. If you want to keep one pgm image file for each subtitle, add the --dump-images option.

Converting a DVD with subtitles to MKV using ffmpeg

I got a rather complicate DVD to rip from, basically the problems are:

  • Subtitles are in dvdsub format (which is normal for DVD), which need palette info to be displayed correctly.
  • Different subtitles streams start at different times, some do start after several minutes. The automatic detection performed by ffmpeg does not detect some of them and gets the sorting wrong.
  • Languages of subtitles are not automatically detected.

Inspect the disk

Using lsdvd directly on the DVD disk, you can see the video tracks, audio streams and subtitles availables:

lsdvd -s /dev/dvd
Title: 01, Length: 02:01:38.600 Chapters: 30, Cells: 30, Audio streams: 04, Subpictures: 24
        Subtitle: 01, Language: da - Dansk, Content: Undefined, Stream id: 0x20, 
        Subtitle: 02, Language: de - Deutsch, Content: Undefined, Stream id: 0x21, 
Title: 02, Length: 01:18:01.000 Chapters: 06, Cells: 06, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 00
Title: 03, Length: 00:00:24.066 Chapters: 01, Cells: 01, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 00
Title: 04, Length: 00:00:09.800 Chapters: 01, Cells: 01, Audio streams: 01, Subpictures: 00

Rip the track

First of all I ripped the first track (the only one I'm really interested in) from the DVD into a directory:

vobcopy -n 1 -i /dev/dvd --large-file -o ./track1/

Using the mediainfo tool you can inspect the resulting vob file to verify that video, audio and text (subtitles) streams are the ones we expect.

Get subtitles palette info

Then I extracted the first (#0) dvdsub stream (there are 22!) from the DVD:

mencoder -dvd-device /dev/dvd dvd://1  \
    -nosound \
    -ovc 'copy' -o /dev/null \
    -ifo /mnt/VIDEO_TS/VTS_01_0.IFO \
    -sid 0 -vobsubout vobsubs-sid0

This command will produce two files: vobsubs-sid0.idx and vobsubs-sid0.sub. Actually we are just interested in the palette which is written into the idx file, it is something like this:

palette: d7410d, 101010, 0e00d7, d5ccc9, d4b1cb, aac5d0, abd3af, d5ff0c,
         d717cc, d6a80b, 8b02d6, 1dca41, 0d007f, 95679f, 8caa67, 783d3f

As an alternative you can get the the .IFO of the track (for the first track it is VIDEO_TS/VTS_01_0.IFO), that file contains the palette info and can be used instead of the palette numbers.

Also lsdvd should be able to print the palette, using the option -P. But in my tests it produced a palette with different color values, which displayed incorrectly in the final result.

Transcode with ffmpeg

Finally I launched the ffmpeg incantation:

ffmpeg -probesize 500M -analyzeduration 500M \
    -palette 'd7410d,101010,0e00d7,d5ccc9,d4b1cb,aac5d0,abd3af,d5ff0c,d717cc,d6a80b,8b02d6,1dca41,0d007f,95679f,8caa67,783d3f' \
    -i 'FREEDOMDOWNTIME1.vob' \
    -map '0:v:0' -map '0:a:0' -map '0:a:1' \
    -map '0:s:20' \
    -map '0:s:0'  -map '0:s:1'  -map  '0:s:2' -map  '0:s:3' \
    -map '0:s:4'  -map '0:s:5'  -map  '0:s:6' -map  '0:s:7' \
    -map '0:s:8'  -map '0:s:9'  -map '0:s:10' -map '0:s:11' \
    -map '0:s:12' -map '0:s:13' -map '0:s:14' -map '0:s:15' \
    -map '0:s:16' -map '0:s:17' -map '0:s:18' -map '0:s:19' \
    -map '0:s:21' -map '0:s:22' -map '0:s:23' \
    -metadata:s:a:0 title='English' -metadata:s:a:0 language=eng \
    -metadata:s:a:1 title='English Commented' -metadata:s:a:1 language=eng \
    -metadata title='Freedom Downtime' -metadata:s:v:0 title='Freedom Downtime' \
    -metadata:s:s:0  language=eng -metadata:s:s:0  title='English' \
    -metadata:s:s:1  language=eng -metadata:s:s:1  title='English FCC-Approved' \
    -metadata:s:s:2  language=dan -metadata:s:s:2  title='Dansk' \
    -metadata:s:s:3  language=deu -metadata:s:s:3  title='Deutsch' \
    -metadata:s:s:4  language=spa -metadata:s:s:4  title='Espanol' \
    -metadata:s:s:5  language=est -metadata:s:s:5  title='Estonian' \
    -metadata:s:s:6  language=per -metadata:s:s:6  title='Persian' \
    -metadata:s:s:7  language=fin -metadata:s:s:7  title='Suomi' \
    -metadata:s:s:8  language=fra -metadata:s:s:8  title='Francais' \
    -metadata:s:s:9  language=heb -metadata:s:s:9  title='Hebrew' \
    -metadata:s:s:10 language=hrv -metadata:s:s:10 title='Hrvatski' \
    -metadata:s:s:11 language=ita -metadata:s:s:11 title='Italiano' \
    -metadata:s:s:12 language=jpn -metadata:s:s:12 title='Japanese' \
    -metadata:s:s:13 language=nld -metadata:s:s:13 title='Nederlands' \
    -metadata:s:s:14 language=nor -metadata:s:s:14 title='Norsk' \
    -metadata:s:s:15 language=pol -metadata:s:s:15 title='Polish' \
    -metadata:s:s:16 language=por -metadata:s:s:16 title='Portugues' \
    -metadata:s:s:17 language=rus -metadata:s:s:17 title='Russian' \
    -metadata:s:s:18 language=swe -metadata:s:s:18 title='Svenska' \
    -metadata:s:s:19 language=tur -metadata:s:s:19 title='Turkish' \
    -metadata:s:s:20 language=zho -metadata:s:s:20 title='Chinese' \
    -metadata:s:s:21 language=xxx -metadata:s:s:21 title='Babel nonsense' \
    -metadata:s:s:22 language=xxx -metadata:s:s:22 title='Game' \
    -metadata:s:s:23 language=xxx -metadata:s:s:23 title='Words' \
    -codec:s 'dvdsub' \
    -vf yadif \
    -codec:v 'libx264' -pix_fmt 'yuvj420p' -preset 'veryslow' -tune 'film' -profile:v 'high' -level:v 5 \
    -b:v '2048k' \
    -ac 2 -codec:a 'libvorbis' -b:a '192k' \

Without the -probesize and -analyzeduration options (both are required), ffmpeg does not see the subtitles streams that starts some time after the begin of the video. If you explicitly map the unseen stream it will produce an error like this:

Stream map '0:s:20' matches no streams.

If you don't explicitly map the streams, you will get only a warning message during the transcode:

New subtitle stream 0:27 at pos:8284174 and DTS:20.0200s

I mapped (i.e. selected to be inserted into the output) the video track, then two adio tracks (there were four), and finally 24 text subtitles tracks (they are actually bitmaps in dvdsub format). The order of the -map options is used to re-arrange the position of the subtitles, overriding the autodetect performed by ffmpeg. All the -metadata are used to properly tag the subtitles once they are sorted as I want.

It is mandatory to use the -codec:s 'dvdsub' for subtitles, if you use the copy option (which does not re-encode the stream) the palette is not applied and you will get subtitles with wrong colors.

Yes, the source video has annoying interlacing artifacts, so I used the yadif video filter to apply a deinterlace effect.

doc/appunti/linux/video/vobcopy.txt · Last modified: 2021/02/19 17:13 by niccolo