Editing VOBs: Convert to MP4 or DV?

Hi Everyone,

A friend of mine recently gave me some home movies he recorded with his Hi8 and miniDV cameras, which were recorded to DVD. What he wants to do is be able to make a highlight reel from all the discs. I’m wondering what is the best format to convert the VOBs to for editing? Also, would it be better to keep the footage interlaced until the final output, or de-interlace each file as i convert? I usually use AviDemux Yadif x2 for deinterlacing.

I’ve used handbrake to make an MP4 and mpeg streamclip to make a NTSC DV file. Each DVD has 2 hours of footage. The MP4 version i’ve managed to make about 6GB, while the NTSC DV file is 26GB. Obviously there would be no increased video quality with the DV file, but would it be easier on the system and more accurate to edit with? I’ve noticed that shotcut plays the MP4 perfectly, while the DV file stutters and drops audio. Does shotcut not support DV formats well, or maybe just need a more powerful system.

I have plenty of storage space so file size is not really an issue, however since I can encode with Intel
QuickSync it would save a lot of encoding time if using mp4.

Any suggestion would be great.

If this is an option for you, then I strongly recommend converting to progressive before editing. Shotcut does not support frame doubled deinterlacing. So half of the temporal information is lost when you let Shotcut deinterlace your video.

For myself, when I am converting/editing old NTSC footage, I always convert to 1280x720P@59.94fps using yadifx2. I have the converter add black bars on the side to convert the aspect ratio. The reason that I increase the resolution is because in NTSC, the pixels are not square. But modern HD/4K display devices use square pixels. So this allows me to preserve as much quality as possible. Mp4 would work fine for this, but DV would not work because it does not support HD resolutions. Also, I convert to a high-quality intermediate format (ProRes, DNxHD, or high-bitrate H.264) so that I maintain high quality through the edit process. Then, when I export from Shotcut I smash the bitrate down as far as I am willing to go.

Hi Brian,

Thanks very much for the suggestions. Just wondering what you use to convert the files?


I personally use FFmpeg. I have a python script that I use to automate the conversion of multiple files on Windows: