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Please note that some, if not many of the links on this page may be broken. This is just an archived copy of the news for this month. We cannot guarantee that the links will work because we remove old versions as we update. For the newest software releases please always refer to the main news and software pages. If you really need a file then please contact us and we'll do our best to help.

Date News

First of all, unfortunately the forum is still down at the time I'm typing this. The admin is currently offline and the server is completely unreachable so there's nothing I can do but wait at this time. One of the site mirrors that runs on the same location is still up so I don't think there's reason for major concern.. it's probably just a crashed box and somebody needs to physically be there to restart. Sorry for the inconvenience.

From the "this wouldn't happen without DRM department" we have the PC game Gear of War which suddenly stopped working last Thursday. Not because you were running a pirated version mind you, but because the game run out of time, literally (DRM used a certificate that ran out).

If you still think the RIAA's three strikes approach makes sense - just wait until you get cut off because your ISP messed up and identified you when somebody else was the culprit. You better study up on networking basics and have a lawyer on retainer to be reconnected.


Two countries, two different stories: While the UK appears to be turning away from cutting off alleged filesharers from the Internet (it could still happen on an EU level though), the US seems one step closer to doing just that. The details are still sketchy, but it all boils down to the possibility of being cut off without due process and without the RIAA ever having to prove you did anything wrong.

MakeMKV is a (HD)DVD and Blu-ray back up tool that converts your shiny new discs to an MKV file while preserving video and audio (only the core audio tracks though.. no lossless or the high def extensions). And, what makes it most interesting is that while not handling BD+, it doesn't require any help to decrypt the latest discs - so somebody other than SlySoft has managed their way around AACS.

1/28 Keep trying until you catch them off guard (or perhaps buy them off in the meantime?) seems to be the motto of the music industry when it comes to getting legislation that would lead to you being disconnected from the Internet upon being accused of infringing copyright three times, and thus, the same issue is back on the agenda of the European Parliament. As annoying as it might be, it's time to talk to your representatives again and let them know what you think about bypassing due process.

eac3to 3.05 show a warning and automatically removes the full range flag from an h.264 video stream (it can be disabled though), can read external (HD)DVD and Blu-ray SUP files including adding a delay to those, shows the number of subtitles in an (HD)DVD SUP track as well as the number of forced and non forced subtitle tracks on a Blu-ray SUP file, allows the use of the check option for demuxed tracks, has improved automatic skipping over damaged (M2)TS files and there are a couple of bugfixes as well.

Almost, that's all that can be said about Virgin's attempt on a legal P2P scheme that mimics the original plans the music industry had for Napster - unlimited P2P downloads for a flat fee. I guess it's hard to change after screaming bloody murder about P2P for so long..


DGAVCDecNV 1.0.10 has a close item in the filemenu, fixes a bug in the frame rate detection and contains a revised machine ID generator. DGVC1DecNV 1.0.3 has the same changes.

aacskeys 0.4.0 can retrieve just the volume ID, accepts paths with dots (you know.. go back one directory, or two directory, or use the current directory, etc.) and symlinks and it also runs on Mac OS X.

ProgDVB 6.03.04 has a new remote control module, comes with a new release of the Prog Media Server and allows you to configure zoom and ratio parameters independently for each channel.

Unfortunately, DRM for music is not dead yet. Beside the subscription sites, Microsoft is behind the latest DRM laden music store for mobiles. MSN Mobile Music brings $2.07 per song music to your mobile phone in the UK - compare that with the $0.99 per song on iTunes (works with cellphones and over the GSM/UMTS network too, but you need an iPhone) and no DRM, it doesn't look like a particularly good deal (and don't forget that you have to pay for the traffic you generate, too).

And here's a hint for the MPAA: Perhaps the decline in DVD sales has something to do with the fact that people are buying more video games? 2008 is the first year where video game sales surpassed digital video. And to top that off, despite the economy tanking, sales of home entertainment products went up 6% in 2008 - so much for piracy, eh?


No, I wasn't taking a break.. there simply wasn't much news recently. I suppose everybody was busy watching Obama.

Anyway, we at least have some P2P related stuff: the Dutch government commissioned a report on P2P and it's a matter of time until the music industry is going to throw a tantrum about the results - the study concludes that the net effect of downloading music off P2P networks rather than buying it is positive for the economy as a whole. Whoops..

Yet another country where you should check the financial records of your elected officials for "contributions" by the music industry: Italy is poised to adopt the RIAA backed "three times accused of filesharing and you're off the net" policy (yeah that's right.. there's no due process there).

Finally, The Register reports that the music flatrate on the Isle of Man should only cost one Euro a year and you'd have an opt out option. Hmm.. of course we all like cheap, but I think the original Napster fee (which was a high single digit dollar value a month) sound more reasonable.


BDInfo 0.5.2 has an option to preserve original stream ordering, can output a quick playlist summary to the text report, refreshes the disc content when the rescan function is used, remembers the last folder scanned between sessions, proposes a default filename to the chart image save screen and fixes two bugs.

What caused this change in tune? The music industry has long been dead set against blanket licensing for music downloads. Pay 10 bucks a month to your ISP for unlimited download? Heck no. Back in the days of Napster, they wouldn't even had to have involved the ISPs - but they blew it when they got greedy and abandoned the plans for a single digit dollar amount per month fee for access to the original Napster network. But now, the Isle of Man is the first place to get a blanket license for music downloads.

But not all is well in music industry land - the IFPI is crying their eyes out and claims that 95% of all music downloaded is illegal, despite only 18% of Internet users participating in the fray. On the flip side, revenue from digital downloads have increased by 25% in a recession. Obviously, those numbers are just as overblown as ever, but that's not to say there's not quite a bit of piracy going around. However, the problem is largely home made. I already mentioned Napster - but there's more: While iTunes doing DRM free (not a 100% though so here's where the problem starts), and Amazon's DRM free service (only in the US.. where's that worldwide expansion that was promised) is certainly a good start, a lot of music that was available in 2008 is DRM encumbered and thus less valuable. Yet, the industry tries to charge just as much as for a CD. So let's sum that up: subtract all the cost from physical distribution and cutting out the middle man, use lossy compression, add DRM and still charge just as much? And then you wonder why people don't buy it? And while everybody can buy a CD from Amazon regardless of where they live, if you shop online, you can only buy songs if you live in the US? Until the industry sells the product for a price that is in line with the cost of traditional distribution, and until they stop carving up markets along state borders, they have no right to complain when consumers don't bite.

And still sticking with music, you have to hand it to Judge James P. Jones, he sees behind the RIAA's posturing: An illegal download doesn't necessarily mean a lost sale.

And as a sidenote, Blu-ray's market slice is sliding down again. No wonder when I look at all the discs I bought during December versus none in January ;)


eac3to 3.04 contains a bunch of improvements when dealing with framerates, shows non fixed audio delays in the log, restores command prompt colors after the program has run and fixes a crash during 2 pass processing and no longer shows CA audio tracks as unknown audio tracks.

ProgDVB 6.03.03 contains an update of the Prog Media Server and the Analog Tuner modules and contains important fixes in the ProgDVB engine.

TSSplitter 1.2 reduces file fragmentation, removes the 128GB limit and fixes an issue on 64bit Operating Systems.

Good-bye Circuit City. The consumer electronics retail chain probably only know for DIVX (that's the DRM'ed Pay Per Play DVD derivative for those that only know DivX - the codec) outside of the US and Canada, is closing down for good.

Despite the results of the UK's public consultation on P2P showing that everybody but right holders is against government regulation, it seems the government is bending over the wishes of the few and is preparing regulation that would turn your ISP into copyright cops.

And sticking with that tune, at least one of the industry's enforcement arms seems willing to cut in ISPs into settlement offers - whether that is really enough to compensate them for lost revenue due to disconnecting users, let alone the PR damage, remains to be seen.


eac3to 3.03 fixes MPEG-2 1088 cropping. The 3.02 release that was released only 2 hours earlier also contains a bunch of fixes.

And to go along with eac3to we have the HD-DVD/Blu-ray Stream Extractor which has just been updated.

amex latest Blu-ray player has no model number yet and no BD profile set, although with an Ethernet port and an USB port it is at least BD-Live ready. The $239 player also comes with decoders for all audio formats, and an optional 7.1 analog audio output.


SupRip 1.14 fixes a few bugs when dealing with italic letters.

This feels a bit like going back on time - recall those HD DVDs that had a regular DVD on the flip side. Now Disney is doing the same for Blu-ray - except that since there's no dual BD/DVD format (other than one BD one DVD layer thingie recently announced) they'll simply put a DVD into the BD package. I wonder if this has any effect on pricing.

Another DRM server bites the dust - leaving at least some of the paying customers in the dust.


Just days after a new HDMI version was announced, the makers of DisplayPort have announced their counteroffer: DisplayPort 1.2 will support resolutions of up to 3840x2160 at 30fps as well as 1080p 3D applications at 120 fps. In addition, the standard allows 2 2650x1600 or 4 1920x1200 displays to receive data individually over the same cable when connected over a hub or when the screens are connected in serial fashion. And just like the new HDMI, DisplayPort will feature a 100mbit/s backchannel, but will be based on the current backchannel architecture. In addition

Dolby also announced their Dolby Pro Logic IIz technology at CES: it requires two additional speakers that are placed on top of the regular front speakers close to the ceiling. The standard extracts the additional audio info from stereo or 5.1 material.

With CES closing, here's the final Blu-ray player tally: 19 new models, of which 13 are BD-Live capable. So here you have it dear BDA.. even in 2009 manufacturers are still leaving parts of the specs out. It's high time BD-Live became mandatory, along with audio decoders for every audio format (recall that while uncompressed audio can be handled by any player, both compressed lossless audio formats - Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD MA - are optional, but all major Hollywood studios use one of the these two codecs for high definition audio).

And speaking of Blu-ray, the last week of the year saw them reaching more people than ever before and capturing 16% of the prerecorded disc market.

Meanwhile, LG has announced a new Blu-ray burner: The BE08 writes single layer BD discs at 8x speed. LG also put a Blu-ray burner into a NAS device. According to LG, the N4B1 can stream content to Blu-ray players. I wonder if that means managed copy and thus if the box can actually rip your Blu-ray discs. I guess we'll know soon enough and you can be sure that the box won't rip discs in the way we consider a proper rip (AACS and BD+ removal).

Movies on flash cards are coming: Warner and Paramount have signed a deal with MOD Systems which will see them distributing standard definition content on SD cards.

Finally, eac3to 3.01 fixes LPCM demuxing from m2ts streams as well as TrueHD to TrueHD + AC3 extraction. And that was preceded by eac3to 3.0 which repairs broken audio streams, reports error in (M2)TS files, skips damaged parts of (M2)TS files, demuxes tracks that cannot be parsed in raw form, support line 21 closed captions, reads the movie / network name from line 21 information, inserts / loops audio for gaps/edits/repairs depending on the length of the gap/edit/repair, improves reading/(M2)TS demuxing/video parsing performance, patches/crops 1920x1088 MPEG-2 streams to 1920x1080, contains a workaround for movie playlists which would result in playing the same movie twice and there are some fixes as well.

Oh, and Haali's first 2009 release of his media splitter has a shortcut for gsdemux in the start menu and fixes some bugs.

1/10 neuron2 has updated his decoder tools for nVidia cards: DGAVCDecNV is up to version 1.09 and DGVC1DecNV up to version 1.02. Both support more audio types found on Blu-ray discs, have improved delay calculation, fix incorrect handling of field-interlaced streams and the licensing should be more flexible to hardware changes.

Here's the latest on Blu-ray players: Panasonic has announced their first portable player, and it does BD-Live, will be able in April and no price has been set yet. The latest batch of their standalone players also feature BD-Live, decode all audio formats, and all players support VIERA cast which means you get direct access to specific Internet sites like the ones from Amazon or YouTube.

Then we have Samsung with the world's slimmest Blu-ray player, and their latest standard model. Both units do BD-Live, decode all audio formats and the latter model also has a 7.1 analog audio output just in case. Price and availability is yet to be announced. Both units also do DivX, though there's no word on whether that includes the new DivX HD.

Sharp even went as far as to include a Blu-ray player into some of their latest TVs (the BD series also sports Internet connectivity and access to content from NBC Universal), and of course there's the standalone variety as well, and they do profile 2.0 as well. Sharp also announced pricing and availability - the cheaper model - BD-HP16U will retail for $229 in March.. so there goes the $200 price point for BD-Live.

Memorex's latest - the MVBD-2520 also does profile 2.0 and has a suggested retail price of $199. It doesn't have a built-in audio decoder for the lossless formats though, and it will be available in early Summer.

Vizio's latest, the VBR100 also sports BD-Live, has a built-in decoder for all audio formats and can even output those decoded streams via analog. All that for $199 and available in April. Now we're getting there.. BD-Live, full audio features and below $200.

And there are some BD sales numbers - software shipment was up 250% in 2008, although that doesn't seem particularly impressive to me seeing as the main competition folded pretty early in 2007. Hardware wise, 10 million units were shipped in the US in 2008, the majority thereof consoles (I don't have the link ready but wasn't it something like 8 million PS3's?).

Last but not least, DRM-free is all the rage these days, so Germany's MusicLoad is gearing up to offering the majority of its catalog without DRM starting in April. I can pretty much guarantee you that the reintroduction of DRM will be a hot April's fool topic :)


With CES starting today, we'll have a steady stream of news for the next couple of days :)

Let's start with some hardware: As if HDMI 1.3 weren't enough, we'll get yet another revision in the future. The yet unversioned version will support an Ethernet data channel over the cable, have an audio back channel and support even more bandwidth.

Then we have JVC entering the Blu-ray market in the US. Their XV-BP1 is profile 2.0 and has analog audio outputs so I presume built-in audio decoder, and has a list price of $299.

LG also has some new Blu-ray hardware: The BD370 and BD390 are both profile 2.0 with the latter one having the required storage integrated plus analog 7.1 audio output. No price has been set yet and the players will arrive in Q2 and Q3 respectively.

Finally, ProgDVB 6.03.01 has a tuned PIP function and contains some important bugfixes.


Right on schedule DivX has released DivX7. The new release supports MPEG-4 AVC in the MKV container as well as AAC audio. The $19.99 DivX Pro adds encoding to that - though so far only the one click DivX Converter actually creates MKV files with AVC video and AAC audio, and it offers no configuration parameter access whatsoever.

DRM on music is dead! Even though Amazon didn't deliver their MP3 store to Europe in 2008 as promised, Apple has just dropped a major bomb: Starting in April, every song sold on iTunes will be DRM free, and effective now, some 8 million songs can be had as DRM free 256kbit download. April will also mark the end of the unified pricing scheme - titles can then cost anywhere between 69 to 129 cents. You can also upgrade your classic iTunes purchases to the DRM free variety for 30 cents. Did we really have to go through the better part of a decade to finally arrive at this? Since CES is about to start, and in Las Vegas of all places, let the betting begin: when will the last DRM encumbered song be sold online (I doubt we'll get rid of it for subscription services or ad supported stuff though) ? And how many years will the MPAA take to get it that DRM is bad for business?

And you might recall the part of my new year's message about the RIAA shifting tactics to get ISPs to cut off Internet access. Their efforts are about to come to fruit in New Zealand and the countdown to do something about it is running fast towards zero.


Welcome in 2009. Hope you were better received than I - I had to abort my New Year's celebration due to a rapid onset of the stomach flu :(

It seems others have been doing better as we already have a batch of news: There's a new version of TSPE which includes DirectShow filter control, shortcuts, persistent storage of GUI positions, more accurate video preview, IDR frame identification, jump to timecode function and the internal viewer now stays active even in fullscreen mode.

DGAVCDec 1.0.8 supports more audio types found on Blu-ray discs, improves the audio delay calculations and treating I frames as IDR is now always enabled.

ProgDVB 6.03 has a reworked IPTV module.

PgcEdit 9.1 contains a bunch of bugfixes.

Then there's a tool I forgot to mention in my new year's message: multiAVCHD Home allows you to turn a bunch of MKV or TS files and a bunch of AVCHD / BDMV folders into disc with a simple menu structure that should play on Blu-ray players.

And it seems BD Rebuilder will soon get some company as SlySoft has been looking for alpha testers for their own CloneBD / CloneHD DVD software.

I've also gone through the software archive with a cursory glance towards updating tools that had outdated versions. I've also added a new section with software that deal uniquely with high definition discs and added the venerable eac3to, MPC HC and aften ot my selection of tools. There's one section I've left out on purpose: encoder GUIs are pending and will come together with some new guides.


Older news can be found here.

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