Worth converting .ts to .mkv?

Infidelus

New member
After seeing @Dan203 post the poll about whether to remove the MPEG4 profile from VideoReDo and the various replies I wondered if it was worth converting all my TV recordings, which are in .ts format, to .mkv. Is there any benefit to be had from doing this. I probably have a good few hundred TV show episodes and a similar amount of movies. The only thing I've read through my brief search is that there may be a small saving of disk space.

For info I have a couple of Raspberry Pi's that I use with OSMC / Kodi to play pretty much everything. Kodi has no issues with the .ts format and neither does my Linux Mint PC using any of the many media players available.
 

Infidelus

New member
Thanks @Danr.

Just as a basic test I did actually convert an episode of something I recorded the other night. My first attempt errorred out with an ffmpeg error to start with, but after I looked on the forums I saw a thread someone else had posted and tried the updated (unpublished so far) update, that fixed it. From a .ts that was 560 MB there was about a 60 MB saving by converting to .mkv so I would imagine there would potentially be some quite significant disk space savings if I opted to convert all my recordings, though I'm not short on disk space at the moment and don't expect I'll bother if there's no other benefit.
 

Danr

Administrator
Staff member
Want to correct my previous claim. One advantage of MKV vs .ts is that unlike .ts files, mkv files can have chapter markers. There are also some audio and video codec combinations that mkv supports that .ts doesn't and vice versa.
 

Infidelus

New member
Thanks again @Danr. I'd forgotten about chapters. Not something I use particularly often, but can be a timesaver getting to where you left off.
 

cp2

Member
I got tired of the incompatabilty issues - file type, and audio codec - with various devices that I had had access to and decided to pick one file type, have any new files in that format and progressively move my library in that direction particularly as I shift to H265.
I picked mkv, so any new equipment I consider I check whether it will play it, and H265 as well. My existing equipment was already OK with my choice.
I don't think I have a player that recognises the chapters held in an mkv file.
I do find that the mkv filetype works better with my PC - unlike ts there is no lag when a click on the progress bar to move through a file.
The problem is that some manufacturers are a bit coy about file compatabilty in their manuals. I looked at a Sony 4K blu-ray player and their manual was gratifying comprehensive of the file standards they support, so much so that i didn't buy it. MKV yes, but not MKV with DTS. No NTFS or FAT32 USB drives either.
My LG TV will not play V6 files from VideoRedo. My fix is to output a ts file and then re-mux it to mkv. I've now got too many files in mkv format to change course.
 

jmc

Active member
Just did a few container conversions from TS using the VRD Default x264 Profiles.
TS ----501MB
MP4--465MB
MKV--462MB

The tricky bit is the audio/video codec combinations that they all support.
All I know is that x264.MP4 will Keep "Closed Captions" inside.
EDIT...(also MKV,TS)
And that MKV will hold the dvd subtitles files inside it while with MP4 they are separate files.

With x264 VRD lists "EIA 608" Captioning.
With HEVC VRD lists nothing but the CC is there. VLC plays them(HEVC-poorly), MPClassic - no.

My tv is 2007 so nothing to test with here except my PC.
My general experience is that MP4 is the way to go in my world.
MKV is very popular but it really depends on the devices you are using and the container/codecs they support.

Oh, noticed the default x264 and HEVC profiles produce the same size file from a dvd.MPG file.

I'll consider using HEVC when I can just stick a HEVC.mp4 on a flashstick into a tv and it just plays.
I don't think we are anywhere near there yet.

More thoughts from people with newer equipment welcome! (thanks "cp2")
 
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jmc

Active member
but not MKV with DTS. No NTFS or FAT32 USB drives either.
Hmm, what do they support in a flashstick? (no FAT32 is a real suprise)
Windows seems to offer only "exFAT" for a flashstick format then.
 

cp2

Member
Hmm, what do they support in a flashstick? (no FAT32 is a real suprise)
Windows seems to offer only "exFAT" for a flashstick format then.
I've just rechecked the Sony manual on-line and I must admit that I couldn't find the FAT32 limitation in that particular document. I might be wrong on that. Checking by another route suggests that Sony support FAT16, FAT32 and exFAT on at leaast some TVs. However, NTFS doesn't get a mention. Having said that I once did a comparison between a Sony blu-ray and a Sony Playstation. They were not consistent.
 
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