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  1. kahmeal's Avatar
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    Attention: Query string updated 9/26 with better aspect ratio control and file size

    Took me a while to find a good method for easily converting any file to a TouchPad compatible format with minimal user input, good file size, acceptable quality and most importantly, working in the stock media player. Figured I'd post my findings here in case anyone else is interested in a similar setup.

    What This Does:
    Right click any file, Send To > Convert for TouchPad and your file gets copied to the watch folder with your suffix (e.g.- .touchpad) and WatchFolder automatically begins converting it and then drops it in your destination folder. You will be able to see the encoding progress in a small transparent window on the bottom right of your screen. If your TouchPad is plugged in you can have WatchFolder automatically copy files to it after encoding is complete.

    Programs Required:
    1. WatchFolder for Handbrake - download here
    2. My batch file - code here or below

    WatchFolder.exe monitors a given directory (or two) for new files and then converts them using the Handbrake CLI with the specified profile (or custom query).

    The batch file simply takes any file, appends your specified suffix and then throws it in the watched folder for conversion.

    Step by step:
    1. Download Watchfolder
    2. Install it, run it, open the settings dialog (right click in system tray > settings).
    3. Choose your source directory. This is the folder where you drop files to be converted.
    4. Choose your target directory. This is the folder where files will be placed after conversion. This folder can be the same as source, just make sure you have "ignore m4v and mp4 files" checked so it doesn't keep trying to convert your files over and over.
    5. File extension: mp4
    6. The other settings are just preference, here are mine:

    7. Under Choose Preset, paste the following into the text area:
    -f mp4 -w 1024 --loose-anamorphic  -e x264 -q 22 -a 1 -E faac -6 dpl2 -R Auto -B 160 -D 2 -x bframes=0 --verbose=1
    Note: If you want a slightly better quality, change "-q 22" to 20 or 18. I found 22-24 is great for most tv shows but some movies weren't quite up to par unless I went with 20 or less. Personal preference. The lower you go, the bigger the file.

    8. Click "Save As Custom Query"
    9. Click "Update settings..."
    10. Right click the tray icon > settings and this time under Choose Preset: pick "Custom Query". You should see the text you pasted earlier.

    Optional: If you want to automatically transfer files you convert to your TouchPad, make sure your TouchPad is plugged in (USB Drive Mode), click the "After Encode" tab at the top of the WatchFolder program and browse to the directory you want your file to be copied to on the TouchPad. Make sure to check "Enable this feature?".

    11. Update settings one more time.
    12. Create a new file in notepad with the following code:
    :: this should be the same as "Source - Directory to Watch" from Watchfolder.exe (local or network path)
    SET WATCHDIR=\\server\videos\touchpad\incoming
    :: change this to whatever you want to append to the output file or leave blank to keep filename the same
    SET SUFFIX=.TouchPad
    :: create a variable with the new filename
    SET NEWNAME=%~n1%SUFFIX%%~x1
    :: copy file to watched directory using new filename as destination change this command to "move" if you would rather move the file.
    copy %1 "%WATCHDIR%\%NEWNAME%"
    :: uncomment the line below if you want the window to stay up after copying until you press a key
    :: PAUSE
    13. Edit the WATCHDIR and SUFFIX variables to match your setup.
    14. Save it as something like "convertfortouchpad.bat", doesn't matter where.
    15. Go to start > run, paste "%APPDATA%\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS\SENDTO" and press enter.
    16. Create a shortcut here to the .bat file you saved in step 14 and name it something like "Convert for Touchpad"
    17. Done! Right click any file, Send To > Convert for TouchPad.

    The resulting files are a reasonable size (~1gb for full movies), maintain a pretty good image quality and play 100% in the stock media player. This method also embeds metadata so you actually see a thumbnail in the media player and not just a generic media file icon.

    Next thing I'd like to do is create an automated task for moving converted files to the media folder on the TouchPad that gets triggered when it's plugged in as opposed to relying on having the TouchPad plugged in while the files are being encoded. Anyone have some leads on the easiest way to do this?
    Last edited by kahmeal; 09/26/2011 at 07:27 AM. Reason: updated query string
    keplenk and rayraypre like this.
  2. #2  
    This is a great resource, THANK YOU! I tried for months to get Handbrake to encode a file that I could stream to my Xbox, and I failed time after time, so something like this is immensely helpful.

    That being said, for those that want a ridiculously easy solution to the same problem, I highly suggest using Vuze. It checks to see what devices you have plugged into your computer (obv. drivers) and lists them out. Then you just drag files you want to put on that device into Vuze and it automatically converts them. It will even copy the files to your device automatically when you next connect it.

    I am pretty snobbish when it comes to the quality of things like this, so I'm going to try and get Handbrake to work, but I thought I'd just offer that suggestion for those that wanted something simpler.
  3. kahmeal's Avatar
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    Just an update, I have in fact managed to set up an automatic transfer to my touchpad of any videos that have been converted by using a program called SyncBack Pro. Unfortunately this program is not free so I am still searching for an alternative, but it works amazingly well. My workflow basically goes like this: Right click/send to watchfolder for conversion. Plug in touchpad, any files that exist in the watchfolder output directory get moved to /media/internal/incoming on the touchpad, once the move operation is done the touchpad is automatically "ejected" to exit usb drive mode and done. With the addition of splashtop remote I can even remote in and send files off for conversion while away from the computer, come back, plug in and have videos on my touchpad ready to be viewed within a few minutes. Absolutely brilliant
  4. #4  
    What encoding string would you use for optimal quality (similar to youtube 720P quality) from 1080P x264 source material? Does this do two-pass?
  5. #5  
    Kahmeal, thanks for the stuff above. I just got my TP after the firesale and have been wanting to play with this so jumped on your stuff (I already had handbrake installed). I can report your setup works great ! So thanks a bunch. Since I'm new at this I have some questions though.

    - I had some WMV clips that I wanted to transcode to view on the TP so I used your method and it got converted to mp4 and ran great. There was one issue though. The WMV files were encoded at 800x600 so when I do your method they were scaled up to 1024x768 which was fine; except that normally when you encode your files size does down. When it went up to 1024 the file size was considerably bigger. Bummer.
    - Does the TP do upscaling? So if the video was at 800x600 would it automatically upscale?
    - Is there a present for handbrake which changes the encoding (wmv->.mp4) with keeping the resolution intact?
    - Does the TP play WMV files? Or do I have re-encode to view them on the TP.
    - There is a paid for media player App that many people appear to use, does that play wmv files.
    - Is there any way to use handbrake to encode an entire dvd? If the DVD needs to be ripped/decssed do you have any recommendations?

    I'm just getting started on doing this stuff and your method gave me a big, big head start. Thanks again!
  6. #6  
    I've had pretty good luck encoding with Handbrake using the default iPad settings but I'm still tweaking the settings.

    DO NOT buy any movies or TV shows from iTunes as there is DRM in those files and they will not play. I have not tried video downloads from any other source yet except streaming from Amazon which works well.

    If anyone has purchased (not streamed) a movie from Amazon or another source and tried it I'd be interested in knowing if they work.
    - 32Gb HP Touchpad, Palm Tungsten E, 32Gb iPhone 4, 16Gb iPod touch (1st Gen)
    *...and I think webOS is awesome
    A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have. - Gerald R. Ford
  7. #7  
    anyone have a GUI preset for handbrake? I tried to edit the preset list and just replace what was there w/ this command line, but no luck. I have dvds I want to get on here, so not really sure i want to figure that out through command lines, heh
  8. #8  

    Will this presets works on Pre3 ? Can I simply try by changing the resolution in the command line (1024 -> 800) ?


    Palm TC, T3, T5, TX, Treo680, Centro and HP Pre3
  9. #9  
    I use the Apple TV preset with large files unchecked and changed the extension to mp4. After you modify it you can save it as a new preset.
  10. #10  
    I have had consistently good results just clicking the iPad preset in HandBrake. Anything ripped with that preset always plays and it always looks great. I assume the HandBrake iPad preset is optimized to the original iPad's screen resolution, and I think the TP and the original iPad have the same exact screen size and resolution.

    I think you could reduce the image quality, make the files a bit smaller and maybe get one more movie on the device that way. But for most people who aren't going to be away from their computer for long periods of time, that is probably not worth the candle. Unless you also store a lot of music and photos on the TP, you can easily get a half dozen movies or more on even the 16Gig TP.
  11. #11  
    Handbrake using the ipad setting works great for my pre2 and touchpad

    -- Sent from my Palm Pre using Forums
    32G Touchpad
    iphone 5 on sprint wouldn't leave a good relationship

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