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720p HD Settings - Animation Tune

This guide is written for Handbrake 1.0.7. on Windows 10.

These settings are for traditional hand drawn animation. Do not use these settings with 3D animation, instead use either standard or film settings.

When you open Handbrake, you will see the Source Selection menu. You can choose Folder (batch scan) to load multiple movies or File to load a single movie. Choose your option and navigate to the folder/file, select and click the open button to load the movie. Alternately, you can click on the cancel button in the source selction menu and then drag and drop a single movie file or a whole folder onto Handbrake to load them.

On the right side of the screen you will see the presets column. Locate the devices section and select the Roku 720p30 Surround preset. You can use this preset as is to encode video files that can be watched on the Roku. This guide will show you how to customize the preset to allow for improved picture quality, foreign subtitle support, Android/Apple device compatibility and optimization for playback over local network and internet on a media server like PLEX.

Here you can select your titles if you have loaded a folder of movies. You don't need to worry about angle or chapters, leave them be.

Click the browse button and navigate to the folder where you want to save your soon to be compressed movie. Type in a name for your movie and click the save button. I recommend you save in a different folder to avoid saving over your source file. To save yourself time, click on Tools>Prefrences>Output Files. Here you can set and save your default path for completed movies.

Output Settings
Select MP4 and put a check mark in the web optimized box. If you're new to this, I recommend using the MP4 container as you start to learn how this all works. MP4 is commonly supported and you will produce a video file that is compatible with Roku, Android/Apple devices and more (results may vary by device.) MKV is a very flexible container that supports 7.1 Dolby TrueHD audio, PGS subtitles, internal SRT subtitles and more. The Roku can play MKV/x264 video files, but it does not support 7.1 audio or PGS subtitles. Overall, your video files will be less compatible as many devices do not support the MKV container. A media server like PLEX can transcode incompatible video files to play on other devices, but that involves more hardware to make that happen and is something for you to decide on later. If you decide later that you want to switch to MKV, just pull your disc out of storage and use these guides to transcode to your needs.

Now you are ready to configure your Handbrake tabs with the settings below. You can check your settings against the screenshot for each tab. The screenshots are configured with the MP4 container, but work the same if you use the MKV container. Please note the screenshots will open in a new tab in your web browser.

Picture Tab | screenshot
Size/Source Leave this alone, the anamorphic setting below will take care of this for you.
Anamorphic Automatic.
Modulus Leave this at 2.
Cropping Automatic.


Filters Tab | screenshot
Detelecine Off.
Deinterlace This is set to the Decomb option with both Presets and Interlace Detection set to default. This will add a little bit of time to your encoding process, but it will keep your video looking normal. If you know your video is progressive and not interlaced, you can set Deinterlace to Off.
Denoise Off.
Deblock Off.
Grayscale Encoding I leave it unchecked, but it could be useful if you are encoding black and white source material.
Rotate Leave it set to 0 and leave Flip unchecked.


Video Tab | screenshot
Video Codec H.264 (x264)
Framerate (FPS)

Leave this set to 30 with peak framerate. This will encode your movie with it's native framerate. Movies with a framerate of 23.976, 25 and 29.97 will be encoded with the same framerate. Movies with a framerate higher than 30fps will be converted to a constant framerate of 30fps. Most blu-ray and DVD movies do not surpass 30fps.

Quality Use Constant Quality. I use RF:21 as a starting point for my 720p HD encoding. I find RF setting between 20 and 22 work well for 720p encoding and generally keep the video in the 2 to 4 gig range. Your video size will vary depending on the movie you are encoding. You can play with the RF slider to find your own preference. Moving the slider to the left will give you a smaller file size, but it will degrade video quality. Moving to the right will increase file size but also retain more video quality.
Encoder Preset Medium.
Encoder Tune Animation.
Fast Decode Leave unchecked.
Encoder Profile High.
Encoder Level 3.1
Extra Options Leave this text field empty.


Audio Tab | screenshot

I encode my movies with two audio tracks to allow compatibility with Android/Apple devices and more. The first track is two channel stereo (converted from Dolby/DTS 5.1/2.0) as it is commonly supported by a wide range of devices. The second track is the original (core) 5.1 Dolby/DTS surround sound soundtrack. Roku does not currently support passthru of Dolby/DTS 7.1 sourround sound on personal media, it's up to you if you want to include it. To hear 5.1 surround sound, your Roku must be connected to your TV/receiver with an HDMI cable (see this guide.) Your Roku should auto detect the HDMI cable and default to the 5.1 surround track. If you want your Roku to default to the stereo track, you will need to manually set that in the Roku's audio settings. If you are connected via composite or component cables (I don't know about optical,) your Roku will default to the stereo audio track. If you want to include more than two audio tracks in your video, you will need to use a media server like PLEX to switch between audio tracks. The Roku Media Player only lets you select different soundtracks if you use the MKV container.

If your equipment does not support DTS audio, Handbrake can convert DTS to Dolby Digital (AC3) audio. Follow the DTS to AC3 settings coded in blue (screenshot.)

Configure Defaults (button) Press the Configure Defaults button to open the audio defaults panel. This is where you will set and save your audio options for this preset. This is new for Handbrake 1.0, previous versions set audio options directly on the audio tab. You can still do that, but the adjustments are only tempoary and do not save.
Choose Behaviors

This feature is useful if you plan to create a preset that pulls in multiple audio tracks with specific rules as to how they are ordered and converted/formatted. I do not use this feature since I only rip and use the main/core audio track (Dolby/DTS 5.1/2.0) from my movies. If you rip more than one audio track, you may need to preview your ripped movie in VLC media player to ensure you are using the main movie track and not a commentary track.

Codec 1st track: AAC (avcodec).
2nd trackAuto Passthru.
For DTS to AC3 conversion, select AC3.
Bitrate 1st track128 or 160. 128 ensures better compatibility with other devices.
2nd track: N/A with Auto Passthru.
For DTS to AC3 conversion, select 640.
Mixdown 1st track: Stereo. Dolby Pro Logic II surround sound will work too, but the mixdown is not perfect. I've had a few encodes where the voice for the front channel ends up on the rear channels.
2nd track: N/A with Auto Passthru.
For DTS to AC3 conversion, select None.
Samplerate 1st track: Auto
2nd track: N/A with Auto Passthru.
For DTS to AC3 conversion, select Auto.
DRC 1st track1 to 1.5 for a AC3 audio track, 2 to 2.5 for a DTS audio track.
2nd track: N/A with Auto Passthru.
For DTS to AC3 conversion, set it to 0.
DRC stands for Dynamic Range Compression. This setting will do it's best to increase the volume of softer (quieter) sound in movie sound tracks. This is handy for movies where the volume fluctuates from scene to scene. The Handbrake documentation states this only works on Dolby Digital (AC3,) but I also hear a difference when converting DTS to stereo.
Gain (dB) 1st track: Set to 2 for AC3 and 3 for DTS. You may need to adjust this to your preference.
2nd track: N/A with Auto Passthru.
For DTS to AC3 conversion, set it to 0.

Now click the save button to close this panel and go back the the audio tab. You will notice that the settings have not changed (sceenshot.). You will not see your newly saved default settings appear on this tab untill you save the preset at the end of this guide.


Subtitles Tab | screenshot

Many movies have subtitles appear on screen when a character speaks a foreign language. These foreign subtitles may be hardcoded (embedded) into the movie or they may be in a soft subtitle (non-embedded) track on the DVD/blu-ray disc. Soft foreign language subtitles must be burned in during the encoding process so they appear on screen when watching your movie. The default method in Handbrake uses Foreign Audio Scan to find and burn in any foreign subtitles. You should already see Foreign Audio Scan setup on your screen (screenshot.) The Foreign Audio Scan method works for most movies, but fails with disc's that use a separate soft subtitle track for foreign language. The Marvel movies use a separate track for foreign language. The tricky part is figuring out which subtitle track contains the foreign language. This Google spreadsheet lists the foreign language subtitle track for over 1000 movies and TV shows. If your movie is listed on the spreadsheet, it will tell you which subtitle track contains the foreign language. I recommend using VLC media player to verify the information from the spreadsheet. If your movie is not listed in the spreadsheet, use VLC to cycle through your subtitles and determine which track and method you need to use.

Click here to read more about Roku and subtitles.

I recommend leaving Foreign Audio Scan as the default in your preset since it will cover about 90% of you movies. If you find that your movie has a separate foreign language track, you will need to follow the setting below (screenshot.)

Source Select the separate subtitle track that contains only the foreign subtitles.
Forced Only Leave this unchecked.
Burn In Put a check in this box to burn in the foreign language subtitles.
Default Leave this unchecked.


Chapters Tab | screenshot

I include chapters on every movie that I encode.

The Roku does not support chapter markers in movies, but PLEX media server does. With the help of PLEX, you can use chapter markers on your Roku to jump from scene to scene. Apple and Android devices also support chapter markers, so why not include them.

Chapter Markers Put a checkmark in this box.


Now that you have your tabs configured, save them as a preset. Click on the add button, located in the lower right hand corner of Handbrake under the preset column. Enter a name for your preset, something that makes sense to you (description is optional.) Next, set Picture Size to Custom and type in 1280 for width and 720 for height. There is no need to edit defaults for Audio and Subtitles, you already have them set (screenshot.) Click the add button to save your preset and close out the panel. The next time you need this preset, you simply click on it, name your video and press the start button.


Need guides for prior versions of Handbrake? Check the Archive.

About Rokoding

Rokoding is a site devoted to video encoding for the Roku Streaming Player, with compatibility for Android and Apple devices as well. This site is designed to help you spend less time learning how to encode video and more time enjoying your movies.


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