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Thread: Creating Slideshows with iDVD 4,5, iLife 6, iLife 8

  1. #1
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    Default Creating Slideshows with iDVD 4,5, iLife 6, iLife 8

    I am far from a Pro at this but my wife just returned from Peru visiting Lima, Cusco, and a doing a strenuous hike up the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu at 14,000 feet. She took along our Canon A40 digital camera which is getting long in the tooth now. I preset it for fully automatic and it's best settings which is 1600 wide x1200 high pixels at 180 pixels/inch, each a JPEG at about 1MB. She took 212 shots. I was amazed how well she did.

    Using 10.3.5, latest versions of iDVD, iPhoto, and iTunes on an MDD G4-1.25GHz DP dual boot FW400 ATI 9800 Pro ME with latest QuickTime Pro and the latest Apple MPEG2 plugin.

    Anyway, I imported the shots into iPhoto and it dumps them into the Photo Library. I then created a new album, called it Machu Picchu, and moved those shots to that album. Then went thru all of the shots and only found three to trash where I think she mistakenly hit the "shutter" button. As I was going thru, I rotated those shots that she had the camera in vertical orientation. Now have 209 shots. Quit iPhoto.

    Wanted some Peruvian and Machu Picchu specific music so a Google search found a lot of CD's to purchase but also some freebies so I downloaded all of the freebies and double clicked one. iTunes started up so I imported the rest of the files into iTunes, all into the Library. Created a new Playlist, called it Machu Picchu and dumped the files in there. Quit iTunes.

    Launched iDVD and in a New Project named it Machu Picchu. Went to Preferences first and set what I wanted, Best Quality, no Apple Logo, Always add original slideshow photos to DVD-ROM, YES, so individaul shots could be printed by anyone who I send the DVD to, and finally Always scale slides to TV Safe Area, NO.

    One of the beauties of creating slideshows in iDVD is that, when you click the Customize box, it looks for the photos in iPhoto, and the audio in iTunes when you select Media in the Customize pane. I won't go thru all of the nuts and bolts of setup except to mention that you are limited to 99 slides for each Slideshow. So each Slideshow, I created three, had 70, 70, and 69 for a total of 209 slides. I used the Cube transition for each Slideshow, one rotating left, one rotating down, and one rotating up.

    Finally, the total in Status of the Customize pane showed about 1GB. I closed the pane and did my final save of the project. Clicked Burn and the SuperDrive tray opened and I put a blank DVD-R in it and closed the tray with the keyboard eject key, top right key. And iDVD starts its steps of crunching. Took 68 minutes. Tray opens automatically and a window asks if I want to burn another.

    I took the burned DVD to my DVD player connected to a Sony XBR 36" flatscreen and ran the three Slideshows. Amazing video and audio quality and at full screen. When I returned to the MDD, the tray is still open and still asking. Put another blank in and used the keyboard key to close the door. Took 16 minutes because it starts at Step 4 instead of Step 1. It is a good idea to have an idea of how many copies you want to make, in my case 9 copies for several of the hiking participants as well as the owner of the hiking company, Call of the Wild in Berkeley. Saves lots of time. k

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    Some nuts and bolts observations. First, word got out amongst the hikers and the leaders so I had to burn 5 more copies. As I mentioned in my previous post, starting another burn from Step 1 again took 68 minutes. The rest of the copies I made were 16 minutes again.

    Some other things I do before burning in iDVD:
    1. In Energy Saver, I do not let the hard drives sleep.

    2. Quit Hardware Monitor, Granite SMARTVue Pro, QuicKeys, and any other visible apps. In addition, the first two poll the hard drives at set intervals for SMART data.

    3. No FW drives running, unless I need them. The polling interrupts burning, slows the crunching.

    4. Even with the power of my MDD DP, there were many times when both the burn pinwheel and the candy striped thermometer bar will come to a complete stop. You will think the app has frozen. Not so, just heavy crunching going on. Once Step 4 gets going (Multiplexing and burning), I did not see the pinwheel nor the striped bar stop. Until you get into Step 4, your blank DVD-R is untouched, no data written to it at all, still a blank.

    5. In Preferences, as I mentioned before, the pref Always scale slides to TV Safe Area, NO. The reason you might want YES is that due to overscan of a TV, If you absolutely must show the entire slide, then YES, but it reduces the size of the slide and you see any edge distortion of the TV. Much better to choose NO and allow the TV that slight overscan plus you are looking at the slides full screen.

    If I think of more, I will post. k

  3. #3
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    kaye, I found an interesting thread in the Macworld forums recently using iMovie to make a slideshow.

    http://www.macworld.com/forums/ubbth...rue#Post241115

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    robertE,

    That is very interesting. I copied that whole thread if I ever do go thru iMovie to iDVD for slides or to export to Quicktime for the web. Thanks for the info.

    BTW, this morning I discovered iDVD > MenuBar > File > Archive project... to move the complete project to another computer. That way I can move it from my MDD to my QuickSilver. k

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    Yesterday I tried the Archive project on my MDD. It asks what portion of the project you want to archive. I selected everything and archived to a FW400 drive. On my QS/PF I double clicked the archive on the FW400 drive and iDVD opened up and everything was there for the project.

    I was curious now about my new FW400 drive so I previewed the whole project and the FW400 drive was constantly working with its drive activity LEDs going but its LCD SMART readout showed constant small file size activity.

    I quit iDVD without saving and copied the project to one of my QS/PF data drives. Double clicked the archive on my data drive and ran thru the whole project. Everything there and this time I saved to the data drive. Now I can burn DVDs for the project on my QS/PF and see how the time for crunching and burning compares to the MDD. That will be for later. But archiving works very well. k

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    Last bit about this project, this time burning it on my QS/PF in comparison to my MDD. Project exactly the same, no changes.

    Both SuperDrives burn DVD-R at 2x, the QS/PF a Pioneer DVR-103, the MDD a Pioneer DVR-104. Some other functions of the MDD SuperDrive are faster tho. I used the same 2x media for both. The QS/PF has a slightly slower DP but twice the L2 per CPU and the same L3. Also slower Front Side Bus and RAM on the QS/PF. Same amount of RAM on both G4's. Both running 10.3.5.

    MDD took 68 minutes, then 16 minutes to burn another.
    QS/PF took 83 minutes, then 16 minutes to burn another. In fact, just to get to Stage 4, the actual Multiplexing and burning, the QS/PF took 67 minutes for the crunching, or almost the same time it took the MDD to do the entire project, crunching and burning.

    Obviously, a faster G4 DP MDD or a G5 DP would be mo betta for the crunching time, as well as a faster burner and media for Stage 4. k
    Last edited by kaye; 10-16-2004 at 08:07 AM.

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    I redid the Machu Picchu, Peru DVD project, now on my GigaMDD, still with iLife 4 apps. The main part of the project was importing more Machu Picchu specific music into iTunes and I have learned more with iPhoto and its capabilities to enhance each digital pic for better brightness, contrast, and color. I also added more pics, up from 209 to 390. The Enhance function in iPhoto warks marvelously well. Out of the 390, I only undid about 5 of the enhancements. Working with those two apps took me a full day but the results were stunning to me, not only the brightness, color, contrast but also the 3D effect.

    Then yesterday morning I made all of the changes/additions in iDVD and started burning in the afternoon. This time I did not quit background apps.

    From start to finish of the first burning, when the SuperDrive door opened with the completed DVD-R, was 117 minutes of which 91 minutes was for crunching thru completion of Stage 3, and 26 minutes for Stage 4, mutiplexing and burning. I had to make 11 copies of the project for the wife to take to Monterey this weekend for a get together of the Machu Picchu hike participants so each subsequent burn was that same 26 minutes to get thru Stage 4. I even let the screensaver take over after 30 minutes, and the GigaMDD never hiccupped nor did it increase Stage 4 time.

    Of course, faster processors, faster SuperDrive (mine is a PIONEER DVD-RW DVR-104), faster media would help, but mainly faster processors to complete the crunch time, and faster SuperDrive and media if doing a lot of copies as I was. k

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    The opening Theme screen now looks like this

    Still limited in iDVD 4 to 99 pics per Slideshow so I have it broken up into 5 Slideshows now (SS=Slideshow). BTW, as you can see on the pic, the Peruvians call it as one word Machupicchu.

    The DVD is only about 25% full. k

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    Completed a project of Da Boss's trip to Norway with Slideshows in iDVD 5 on my G5. Comparing with a previous project on my GigaMDD:

    SuperDrive DVR-109 / DVR-104
    iDVD 5 / iDVD 4
    2x DVD-R media
    Writes up to 16x / up to 2x (I need faster DVD-R media for the G5 as well as some DL)
    Norway / Machu Picchu
    491 slides, 486 transitions / 390 slides, 385 transitions
    Time to crunch encoding, processing, rendering menus, slides, transitions, and audio:
    37 minutes / 91 minutes
    even tho the G5 had about 100 more slides and transitions
    Multiplex and Burn:
    29 minutes / 26 minutes
    tho the G5 completed Multiplex much faster even with more slides and transitions, actual Burning is still 2x because of the 2x media

    I did not quit any background apps for either of these tests. The G5, tho I have set Energy Saver to sleep the Cinema Display in 20 minutes, it did not sleep during any phase of this operation. The GigaMDD with iDVD 4 I allowed the CRT monitor to sleep and it did.

    iDVD 5 has a revised window during this process with much more info about what is going on including small pics of all of the slides and transitions as it crunches thru them for each slideshow. Also like its new Themes (opening Menu screen) many with motion and lots of places to drop selected slides and with audio and transitions both new and old. k

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    A bit off topic but I wanted to try burning two different sets of CD-Rs on my G5 from within iPhoto without exporting to Toast Titanium. Never having tried that and wanting to be sure that the CD-Rs would work on a PeeCee (it is an option in Toast), there is no option in iPhoto. Burned them and waited for my son to get home from work. Worked just fine on his PeeCee.

    The G5 SuperDrive DVR-109 is rated for writing CD-Rs at up to 24x and reading CDs at up to 32x. Well the burn function in iPhoto chose to write at 32x in its menu, my CD-Rs are TDK data 700MB at up to 48x. I have never updated the firmware, if it works don't fix it. Firmware Revision: A912 according to System Profiler. k

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    Back to burning the Norway project in iDVD 5. This page http://dvd.kentidwell.com/?page_id=23 has a wealth of info comparing Best Quality with Best Performance. Can be a confusing issue. So once you have your project completed you can change from one to the other if you like. I especially like this chart


    However when I tried changing from Best Quality to Best Performance in Preferences and burning a DVD, I saw no difference. Huh? This is an under 60 minute project. So I went to the Apple iDVD info and found this page http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=164975 and buried in that page is a reference to choosing from the MenuBar Advanced > Delete Encoded Assets before burning the project again, otherwise it still burns with the previous encoded assets. You don't need to change the content and you can change from Best Quality to Best Performance or vice versa in Preferences but you must Delete Encoded Assets. Having done those steps and burning another DVD as a test, I could definitely see the difference between Best Quality and Best Performance. k

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    I purchased some faster DVD-R media, two 25 pack cakeboxes, and a small amount of DL DVD+R, a 3 pack. The DVD-R is BeAll (Samsung) 1-16x and that is clearly imprinted on the top face of the media which is helpful for me since my slower 2x media looks the same both front and back. The DL is Verbatim with which I have no experience and it does 2.4x, 4x, 5x, and up to 6x. My Pioneer DVR-109 SuperDrive says it will do up to 4x in DL. I will have to compose a long project in iMovie before trying the DL.

    Back to the Norway project with the new 16x DVD-R media. The SuperDrive is supposed to be able to write DVD-R at up to 16x. Remember that the old 2x media did the Multiplex (which takes less than a minute on the G5) and Burn in 29 minutes. This time Multiplex and Burn took 5.5 minutes at Best Quality. The DVD played perfectly in my DVD player.

    Mucho better but the burn rate comparison made me wonder. Also apparently you cannnot compare the burn rate for CDs (1x=150KB/sec) with the burn rate for DVDs. Also in iDVD, you cannot tell what speed the burn is at. So I put a blank 16x DVD-R in Toast Titanium and it said 12x max. Tried Popcorn and it also said 12x max. I then put one of the old 2x DVD-R in Toast and it said 1x only. Popcorn the same. Don't know what to think. Lots of complaints on the web about SuperDrives not burning up to their claimed Max DVD speed. More stuff indicating that 8x burning is best for compatibility with DVD players. Anyway, tho confusing, it all works and still no DVD coaster and compatibility with my DVD player. k

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    Lightbulb MPEG Streamclip

    MPEG Streamclip 1.3.1

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    MPEG Streamclip is an application that converts MPEG files (including transport streams) into muxed, demuxed, QuickTime, AVI and DV files with more than professional quality, so you can easily import them in Final Cut Pro, DVD Studio Pro and Toast 6.

    http://www.alfanet.it/squared5/mpegstreamclip.html

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    I wanted to try out the DL media (on my G5) that I had purchased so decided the quickest way would be to use MacTheRipper v2.6.6 on one of my purchased commercial DVDs and then burn in Roxio Popcorn v1.0.3. I chose AVIATOR. Here is where I purchased the media http://www.meritline.com/dl-dvd-r-du...-verbatim.html and I got the 3 pack. Stuff is not cheap but will write up to 6x. My SuperDrive writes up to 4x DL.

    The docs for MTR are so detailed that I printed them up and followed the instructions for both the Preferences, the Mode window, and the Disc window. I chose Full Disk Extraction, meaning everything on the disk, 7.63GB. Rip time was 26 minutes, 51 seconds. MTR creates a folder, AVIATOR, with everything inside, I chose on the desktop so I wouldn't have to look for the folder.

    Before burning the DVD, launch DVD Player and navigate to the folder and choose whats inside and DVD Player will play it as if it were a DVD if the rip and all your MTR prefs were correctly chosen. Only takes a few minutes to watch a bit of the DVD as well as navigate thru the other selections besides Play and saves possibly burning a coaster. These DL disks are not cheap, almost $5 each.

    Then you can go to burning. Toast 6 or Tiger Disk Utility will do it but there are hoops you have to jump thru whereas Popcorn will do it directly.

    Keep in mind that Popcorn will burn to a SL DVD or to a DL DVD. I launched Popcorn and dragged the AVIATOR folder into the Popcorn window and Popcorn automaticaly change to a Copy Format of VIDEO_TS Folder. Inserted the DL media and changed the mini-window selection just above the Burn button to DL. A SL media, Popcorn said it would compress 43% with a quality it calls Good.

    Burn time for DL at 4x 7.63GB is 25 minutes 19 seconds. If you choose Verify, that took 18 minutes 27 seconds because the SuperDrive reads this media faster than it writes. The burned DVD played fine in my SuperDrive. And it played just fine in my DVD player attached to my TV and it played just as well as the original in all respects.

    Popcorn window

    k

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    I wanted to try my new SL DVD-R media on the same AVIATOR file. BTW, I have both that and an Apollo 13 file I ripped from my purchased DVD. The size of both is nearly 16GB on my boot drive. Plus Popcorn Prefs creates a temporary storage, used to temporarily store files while compressing and copying. Up to 15GB of free disk space may be required. The Prefs do allow using another drive for this. Good reason to have a large boot drive if you don't have another.

    The cost difference between the faster writing SL media and the slower DL media is about $.55 vs $5. Plus writing at 12x vs 4x. But how about quality?

    The sequencing of Popcorn changes dramatically with the DVD-R media and a 7.63GB file to squeeze onto it. Compressing with what Popcorn calls Good at 43% compression took 16 minutes 15 seconds. There was no compressing with the DL media. Writing took 7 minutes 17 seconds for a total of 23 minutes 32 seconds whereas the total for the DL media was 27 minutes with no compression. Not much difference there.

    Put the SL copy in my JVC DVD player connected to a 36" Sony XBR and compared to the original and the DL copy. The original and the DL copy are virtually identical. The SL copy not quite so good but amazingly good considering the compression. The SL copy had a softness to it or slight degradation of clarity or focus (best I can describe this). Not always the case, sometimes the same but on screens with a lot of detail, like a room full of hundreds of people in widescreen, the detail was not as good. Hair also a bit muddied, not as detailed where you can see every strand on DL. Text, like the FBI warning, also consistently showed slight ghosting. Audio was also compressed but I am near deaf according to others in the house and my son was not available to listen. So I cannot say about audio.

    I am not into archiving my originals. If I were I would use DL. If you don't have a DL burner, then the SL is amazingly good, considering the compression necessary. So far all of my iMovie to iDVD work is less than 1 hour so I can get the best of Best Quality with the SL media. And the slideshow work I have done can easily fit on SL media. Even with almost 500 slides and near 500 transitions plus audio and opening screen, that was only 1.1GB as I recall. k

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    Default iLife '06

    Broke down and purchased iLife '06 and now glad I did. Just the integration between iPhoto v6.0.2 and iDVD v6.0.1 with iTunes v6.0.4 in that mix is very nice. Yet to try iWeb v1.0.1, GarageBand 3.0.1, and iMovie HD v6.0.1, OS 10.4.5 on my G5.

    Da Boss and her friend Birgit flew to Albuquerque, NM to meet up with mutual friends Paul and Eva driving from Florida, 3 Germans and my Austrian Boss. Very little English spoken when they are all together. And Paul likes having three women around. So two car caravan (I rented a car with ski rack) driving to Telluride, CO which is about 7 hours with skis, poles, boots, and large bags for clothes. Wife took her Canon A75 digital.

    Uploaded 100 digital photos into iPhoto which has a bunch of new features. Created a Slideshow within iPhoto with Ken Burns effect and random picked transitions as well as music selected from iTunes but still within iPhoto and saved it as Telluride Slideshow. Can be run on my G5 within iPhoto and I transferred it to the wife's iBook for her to view. She loved it.

    Continuing in iPhoto, there is a Menu Bar item Share > Send to iDVD. Did that. Created a Theme with 10 selected photos and more music from iTunes but within iDVD. The first burn completed but when the SuperDrive tray opened, iDVD quit and no window appeared. What's up with that? I had repaired permissions and run DU Verify Drive several times. So I spent most of the morning day before yesterday on the Apple Support Forums to see if anyone else had the Quit after completion of the burn. Lots of problems but none specific to mine after the burn. In the meantime I installed the latest Security Update yesterday afternoon. Then more permissions repair and verifying the drive.

    Last night I tried iDVD again and this time instead of quitting after burn and the SuperDrive tray opened, I got the window asking if I wanted to burn another DVD. Burned 4 more DVDs. Whatever the problem was, it is now solved or until the next project. BTW, Project Info is no longer a sliding pane off of the main iDVD window. Now you go to the Menu Bar > Project > Project Info or just do Command-I. Has more info too than the old sliding pane.

    My Slideshow consists of 100 slides with Ken Burns effect and random Transitions in iPhoto. iDVD still goes thru this process:
    1. Prepare.
    2. Process Menus, in my case the one Theme/Menu, and it processes both video and audio.
    3. Process Slideshows, it immediately proceeds to step 4, because with the Ken Burns and random Transitions, iPhoto created a QT movie.
    4. Process Movies, both video and audio, this takes the longest time.
    5. Burn, using write speed 1x-4x DVD-R media, tho this PIONEER DVD-RW DVR-109 SuperDrive is capable of up to 16x (as well as 4x) write speed with DVD-R media.

    iDVD Project Info:
    Video Mode: NTSC, Aspect Ratio: Standard (4:3), Encoding: Best Quality, DVD Type: DVD-R Single Layer (SL) 4.2GB, Project Duration: 30:06 Minutes, DVD Capacity: 1.3GB of 4.2GB, Motion Menus: 12:37 of 15:00, Tracks: 1 of 99, Menus: 1 of 99.

    In the Finder, the project file shows 1.6GB despite the 1.3GB it shows in iDVD. The burned DVD shows 1.62GB. During step 4, Process Movies, Encoding Video, saw a lot of 100-106% in Activity Monitor, with a range of 95-150%. Compressor has been imbedded in iDVD since version 4 so I don't know if iDVD v6 is actually DP aware where needed or if it is actually Compressor that is causing the DP activity. An operation like step 5 Burn only used 13%, perhaps more if I had used faster media. I still have a ton of the media, but it works on the G5, GigaMDD, and QS/PF. Have not tried the iBook G4 yet.

    For the 30 minute project, iDVD took 52 minutes for the 5 steps to complete (SuperDrive tray opening). Once I got the window working asking if I wanted to burn another copy, it took 24 minutes for the burn only which saved 28 minutes. k

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    Default iWeb v1.0.1

    I have now done two projects in iWeb v1.0.1. For me it was a steep learning curve but once figured out via both the iWeb Help and Apple's online iWeb help, it is very nice.

    I had finished the public Telluride web page project and wanted to add a private password protected web page of family photos. Published it and discovered that password protected both projects. Deleted the family project and, after reading up found that I have to create another Site. So everything on a Site is either public or private. If private, it now needs to have both a User Name and a Password. Republished the family project to a private Site. Anytime you want to change something within a project, no more doing it online, must delete and republish within iWeb as far as I can tell.

    All of the previous projects before iWeb are still on the web but with iWeb I cannot publish to them. I can only convert them all to iWeb. No way I'm going to do that. The link above to the iWeb Telluride project, you are limited to 99 photos, I really like the new Slideshow accessed from the icon. It is automatic, about 6 seconds between photos, and I like the presentaion much better. When it starts, just moving the cursor off to the side of the window causes the thumbnails at the top to disappear and the left, right, pause controls which overlay the photo to disappear. The thumbnails will reappear by moving the cursor to the top of the window. Same for the controls moving the cursor near the middle of the screen.

    It takes a while for the Telluride page to fully load. Best to get a cup of coffee while it is doing so. I just wish I could add music to the web page but cannot. k

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    It takes a while for the Telluride page to fully load. Best to get a cup of coffee while it is doing so. I just wish I could add music to the web page but cannot. k
    Kaye that first page loads in about 3 or 4 seconds here.
    Oh, I see now you mean the slideshow.

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    Randy,

    The response time of the dotMac servers, particularly on weekends, is sometimes slower than late night or weekdays. Much better than it used to be however. Another improvement, the older iPhoto publishing a page with 49 photos, I would sometimes get a fail to complete message. Yet I quickly discovered that it did complete. With the current iPhoto to iWeb publishing, I get no such message with 99 photos and it uploads faster. k

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    K, Music would be a sweet touch.

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