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How to Rip DVD to MP4 with Handbrake on Windows and Mac

  1. "How to use Handbrake to rip DVD to MP4 with normal high quality? I've used it to convert several DVDs, all the output MP4 videos are blurry or blocked, and can't be watched at all."
  2. "How to convert DVD to MP4 using Handbrake? I'm a novice user and have no idea of the setting stuff. Any suggestions?"
  3. "Handbrake can't rip copy-protected DVD. Is there an easy-to-use free Handbrake alternative to perfectly convert any copy-protected DVD to MP4 with best quality at fast speed?"

All answers are here. This post includes everything about using Handbrake to rip DVD to MP4.

Rip DVD to MP4 Easier and Faster with Best Free Handbrake Alternative

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Part 1. How to Rip DVD to MP4 with Handbrake in Best Video Quality?

Step 1. Free download and install HandBrake on your computer. This tool is compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Step 2. Download and install libdvdcss for HandBrake.

Handbrake itself can handle non-protected discs only. If you want to use HandBrake to convert a commercial DVD which is always copy-protected, you need to free download and install libdvdcss to help HandBrake decrypt DVD.

If you don't know how to do this, check our guide on how to install libdvdcss for HandBrake >>

  1. Free download libdvdcsss from VLC.
  2. Rename the downloaded file "libdvdcss-2.dll" to "libdvdcss.dll"
  3. Save the file to Handbrake program folder.

Step 3. Import your DVD to HandBrake.

Open HandBrake, insert your DVD disc to the DVD-ROM, and select your DVD under "Source Selection". Then HandBrake will start scanning you DVD movie titles.

Handbrake is scanning DVD titles
Handbrake scanning DVD titles

Step 4. Choose the DVD title you want to rip to MP4.

Handbrake will scan DVD titles one by one and usually select the longest title. However, Handbrake may select the wrong title when there is multiple titles of the smiliar length. It always happen when you insert a 99-title DVD. In this case, you need to manually set the title. If you are not sure which is the correct one to choose, you can play your DVD and check the title number when the movie part begins.

Choose a title to rip with HandBrake
Handbrake selects titles

Step 5. Choose a desired preset.

Handbrake offers a slew of presets classified into General, Web, Devices, Matroska, and Production. You're not suggested to choose a resolution higher than your DVD resolution. It won't improve your DVD quality but increases your file size.

Choose a preset
Choose a preset

Step 6. Choose MP4 as the output format.

To make HandBrake convert DVD to MP4, click Summary tab, click the dropdown menu of Format, and select MP4 as the output video format.

Rip DVD to MP4 with Handbrake
Handbrake DVD to MP4

Step 7. Adjust the settings of video, audio, subtitle, etc.

Under Summary, you can see the parameters of your output file. If you think it is necessary to make a change, just do it. For example, you can click Video tab and change the video codec. Available video codecs include H.264, H.265, MPEG4, MPEG2, VP9/8 and Theora. H.264 has the best compatibility while H.265 can well balance the quality and file size. If your processor supports hardware acceleration, Handbrake will atuomatically display the GPU-accelerated options (like H.264 Intel QSV). Don't forget to select one of them. It's faster.

Our recommended settings for Quality, bitrate, and framerate are as follow.

  • Quality: As the source is DVD discs, set the RF 18-22 for 480p/576p SD videos.
  • Bit rate: If you want faster speed, select 1-PASS; 2-pass is slower but will generate better quality.
  • Framerate: Leave the Framerate Per Second (FPS) as defualt.

This is a little complicated for novice users. Different settings will output different video quality and size. You may want to check the best HandBrake settings for DVD to MP4.

Handbrake DVD to MP4 settings
Handbrake DVD to MP4 settings

Step 8. Specify where to save the MP4 file.

Click "Browse" button to set a target folder to store the ripped DVD movie video. Make sure the destination folder have enough free space.

Step 9. Start ripping DVD to MP4 with HandBrake.

When everything is settled, you can click "Preview" button to select a part of the DVD movie to preview the output effect. Then hit the "Start Encode" button on the top to begin converting DVD to MP4 video file with Handbrake. You can view the status of the DVD to MP4 conversion process in the bottom of the program including Avg. FPS, time remaining, etc.

Part 2. Handbrake DVD to MP4 Ripping Performance & Test

To better illustrate the performance using Handbrake to rip DVD to MP4, below we have tested the loading time, ripping time, speed, output quality and size, etc.

Test Computer: Windows 10 Pro; Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-3470 CPU; 8GB RAM; 64-bit OS. No other program is running on computer when testing Handbrake ripping DVD to MP4.

Test 1- Rip DVD ISO to MP4 with Handbrake

Original DVD ISO File Time: 1:42:12, Size: 7.27GB. DVD ISO Loading Time: Fast

1-pass/2-pass/CRF

1-pass/ABR

2-pass/high profile

CRF/high profile

Handware Acceleration

Intel QSV (Avg bitrate 22)

No. x264 encoding

No. x264 encoding

Avg. FPS

410

110

121

CPU Usage

99%

99%

99%

Ripping Time

6min

22min

22min

Output Video Quality

Complete, but the video is blocked. Can't bear to watch

Complete, clear but not HQ

Complete, clear but not HQ

Output Video Size

486 MB

1.10 GB

0.99 GB

Audio Bit Rate

543Kbps

543Kbps

543Kbps

Output Resolution

720x384

720x384

720x384

Output Audio Channels

Show AC3 5.1, but the actural output channel is 2

2 (stereo)

2 (stereo)

Verdict:

  1. If you select Intel QSV, you need to set Avg bitrate by yourself.
  2. The interface of Handbrake is complex and is not suitable for beginners.
  3. The output video quality is not good, especially when you choose Intel QSV encoding, the output video may be distorted.

Test 2 - Rip DVD Disc to MP4 with Handbrake

Original DVD Movie Time: 2:29:48, Size: 7.84GB. DVD Disc Loading Time: 8min

1-pass/2-pass/CRF

1-pass/ABR

2-pass/high profile

CRF/high profile

Handware Acceleration

Intel QSV (Avg bitrate 22)

No. x264 encoding

No. x264 encoding

Avg. FPS

244

244

95

CPU Usage

70%

50%-99%

About 40%

Ripping Time

20min

34min

23min

Output Video Quality

Complete, but the video is blocked. Can't bear to watch

Complete, clear but not HQ

Complete, clear but not HQ

Output Video Size

335 MB

1.22 GB

2.20 GB

Audio Bit Rate

160Kbps

160Kbps

160Kbps

Output Resolution

720x362

720x362

720x362

Output Audio Channels

2 (stereo)

2 (stereo)

2 (stereo)

Verdict:

  1. The DVD disc loading time is long.
  2. Scan titles one by one.
  3. The output file is .m4v.
  4. The output movie video is all pixelated.
  5. Handbrake can't deal with copy-protected DVD.

Part 3. Handbrake DVD to MP4 Ripping Errors

According to our tests and users' feedbacks on various forums, there are some common errors during the DVD to MP4 converting with Handbrake. Let's see how to fix.

1. Handbrake stuck scanning the titles.

Similar problems like wrong titles, output only KBs, etc. are mainly caused by the multiple-title protection. Handbrake doesn't support ripping DRM-protected DVD to MP4, for instance, DVD CSS, region code, RCE, Sony ArccOS, UOPs, Disney X-project DRM DVD. Even with the libdvdcss installed, it won't support advanced encryptions, like 99 titles. Therefore, problems occur at the first step. To fix, you can play the DVD with VLC first and find the correct title. Then manually set the correct title for it. Or you can rely on a DVD decrypter to remove the protection.

2. Speed, quality, or size? You need to choose carefully

"I can convert my packs of discs with almost no quality loss :-) But the process takes a long time - for example, one lasts about 30 minutes, and another about 100 minutes. Any better settings?" Basd on the test results, 1-pass encoding is fast, but the video quality is far from satisfactory. While 2-pass generate better quality, but it takes longer time and the final file size is much bigger. You have to select the settings carefully based on what you care most. In fact, there is Handbrake alternative that offers a sweet spot among the speed, quality, and file size.

Other disadvantages:

  • The interface and settings of Handbrake are complex and it is not suitable for beginners.
  • Handbrake sometimes crashes in the half way before finishing the ripping process.
  • The output profiles in Handbrake are limited to MP4 and MKV. Worse still, Handbrake always rips DVD to M4V not MP4.
  • Handbrake is not updated often and lacks technical support.

Part 4. Free Handbrake Alternative to Rip DVD to MP4 Fast in High Quality & Small Size

If Handbrake can't convert your DVD to MP4, works slow, exports poor quality, or delivers a big file, you can try a free HandBrake alternative - WinX DVD Ripper.

Why WinX DVD Ripper is the best alternative to HandBrake for DVD to MP4?

  1. It is a 100% clean and free DVD ripping tool, no malware, no virus.
  2. It bypasses region codes and DVD copy protections such as CSS, RCE, Sony ArccOS, UOPs protections, and more. It decrypts DVDs without a third-party tool like libdvdcss required;
  3. It can convert DVD to MP4 as well as many other formats such as AVI, MOV, MPEG, ISO image, and VIDEO_TS folder. Over 350 output presets are provided.
  4. It supports Intel® (QSV), NVIDIA® (CUDA/NVENC) & AMD GPU accelerated DVD ripping, ensuring superfast speed. You may cost 5 minutes only to rip a 90-minute DVD to MP4.
  5. It applies a unique video processing tech, which is able to maintain high output quality in small file size.

Free download and install WinX DVD Ripper on your Windows 10/8/7 or Mac computer, and follow our guide to convert DVD to MP4 with this HandBrake alternative.

Step 1: Launch WinX DVD Ripper and insert the DVD disc to the DVD-ROM. Click " DVD Disc" button to load the DVD movie. This smart free DVD to MP4 ripper can auto select the right DVD main title for you.

rip DVD to MP4 with Handbrake alternative
Rip DVD to MP4 with Best Free Handbrake Alternative

Step 2: Select " MP4 Video" as the output, and customize the video/audio parameters according to your own needs.

Step 3: Click "Browse" to set a output folder to store the video and hit "RUN" button to rip DVD to MP4 with this Handbrake alternative right now.

Watch video tutorial on how to rip DVD to MP4 with HandBrake alternative

Disclaimer: Digiarty Software does not advocate ripping copy-protected DVDs for any commercial purpose and suggests referring to the DVD copyright laws in your countries before doing so.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

author - Donna Peng

Donna Peng twitter icon

Donna Peng's fascination with multimedia began at an early age - shortly after she licked the physical disc and then she's been obsessed ever since. Her decade-long career at Digiarty after the graduation has seen her unmatched expertise in the field of DVD, digital video, software and anything related to home theatre. She is currently fascinated with photography.

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