OK we missed the most recent episode of Desparate Housewives while we were in Hawaii. I hadn’t kept up to date on bittorrent in the last couple months so time to try again.
Then off to http://www.torrents.co.uk which is a great source of TV torrents. Found the Desparate Housewives episode which aired on 12/20, and started up the download. Very painless, full HDTV quality, no commercials.
And once done, it played perfectly in the Divx player that I already had installed, so I didn’t have to hunt around for one of these, tho there seem to be a number of alternatives out there.
OK so now I could play this great looking show in my office, but I really wanted it down in the family room, and i don’t have a media center pc yet. So I thought gee, I’ll just burn it onto a DVD and go!
This is where everything turned to crap. First off, i tried a bunch of different DVD burning tools that I had on my machines — most of them bundleware with DVD burners. Ulead, sonic mydvd were a couple of them. None of them could parse the downloaded show. So I googled around and downloaded a few more — HT Burn, DVD Lab Pro. Nope they couldn’t import the show either.
Figuring I had some strange codec problem i downloaded Videoinspector, this was pretty helpful. Analyzed the show, and claimed I didn’t have the necessary xvid codec (tho how did the divx player play the show then???) and took me right to a download site. Ok so i installed but I still had trouble getting any DVD authoring software to consume the file. tmpgenc seemed to be able to crack the file thought to what end I am not sure. DVD lab pro hung hard.
After the hard hang i updated my sony dvd burner firmware and checked my bios and scsi/sata firmware, all ok. Still I could never coerce anything into burning a dvd, ht burn got the furthest and actually burnt the video but no audio.
So I gave up. We all watched the show in my office.
What have I learned? The last time I tried to burn DVDs in earnest was about 6 months ago. The software sucked then. It still sucks now. And the other learning is — get a media center PC.