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Converting DVD for AppleTV

Converting DVD for AppleTV

So you have invested your hard earned cash in an AppleTV, you have added all your home video, music, photos and podcasts and you want to add some of your full films to your home media centre. There are a number of key advantages of storing your films on the AppleTV. Firstly there is the sheer ease of use, click on My Movies and select the film from the menu and there it is in full screen glory.

dvds [Photo Credit : Flixelpix]

The second advantage is DVD protection, I have found myself having to replace ‘classic’ DVDs over the years due to mistreatment by the kids. Converting the DVDs for the Apple means your master stays safely on the shelf. I should state early in the post this tutorial is for the converting of DVDs you have paid for, we do not condone the copying of DVDs that you do not actually own.

It is actually amazing how simple it is to add your DVD content to the AppleTV via your Mac computer using a free application called “Handbrake”.

You can download Handbrake from the website. On first run Handbrake will prompt you to install the free and excellent VLC media player which it needs to cope with commercial DVD films.

Converting DVD films is as easy as 1,2,3. Insert the DVD and load the handbrake application.


1. Open Source

Click Source (see 1) and select the DVD in the finder window. Handbrake will now index the various chapters of the DVD, this make take a few minutes depending on the number of chapters on the disk.

2.  Select the Preset

Handbrake comes ready prepared to export film to AppleTV format. Click the presets button on the top right of the handbrake screen and select the AppleTV preset.

3. Start

Click the start button for Handbrake to get to work. Converting a DVD for viewing on the AppleTV can take a few hours but it is worth the wait. The average DVD exports to about 1.5 GB.

4. Import to iTunes

Open iTunes and import the converted film into your iTunes Library. You may have to rename the film to make it easier to recognise but once synced you can then watch the film on the AppleTV, better still without the trailers ! Easy !

alertPlease note we do not condone piracy of DVD movies. This guide is for the transfer of film you own to your AppleTV device!

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