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Convert Video for Your iPad

With its ever expanding catalog of movies and TV shows, the iTunes Store is a great place to stock up on video content for an iPad. But why spend your hard-earned money there when you already have a vast collection of DVDs, iMovies, and other video files at your fingertips? With the help of best DVD to iPad converter and iPad video converter software, you can convert these videos into iPad-compatible files.

Rip movie DVDs

Let’s say that you purchased a movie on DVD, and that you want to convert it to watch on your iPad. PC users, download Aiseesoft DVD to iPad Converter, Mac users, download iSkysoft DVD to iPad Converter for Mac. To rip a DVD, pop the disc into your drive and launch the DVD to iPad converter program. Click on the Open button, and the program will scan the disc for video data.

Once the program has scanned the disc (or the VIDEO_TS folder, it presents you with a list of items in the menu.  Pick the title you want to convert—the movie is the item with the longest duration. In the profile, select iPad MPEG4 video output and specify a location in which to save it. Click on the Convert button and go for a walk—the process can take a while, depending on the length of the video and the speed of your computer. The resulting file will be formatted perfectly for your iPad’s screen.

Rip TV-show DVDs

If you’re ripping a DVD that contains an entire season of TV shows, the good option is to use the free application HandBrake. Don’t let its generic icon fool you— HandBrake is the easiest way to convert multiple files from a DVD.

Insert a DVD, open it in HandBrake, and wait for the application to detect the various titles on the disc. To rip all the episodes, find all the titles that are similar in length (around 22 minutes for a half-hour show and 43 minutes for a one-hour show); then click on their check boxes.

Under the titles is a list of settings.  Stick with H.264, as choosing Apple TV MPEG-4 output(since Handbrake doesn’t feature iPad profile currently). From the Picture Format pop-up menu, choose Original to maintain the video’s aspect ratio. Finally, make sure to pick your language from the Preferred Audio pop-up menu (it may not always default to English, so pay close attention). Click on Convert, and then sit back and relax while  HandBrake does its thing.

Convert hard-drive videos

Of course, videos are not limited to DVDs. Your computer’s hard drive is probably brimming with video files you would like to have on your iPad. For quick and easy conversions, check out  iFunia iPad Video Converter for Mac (for Mac user) and Aiseesoft iPad Video Converter (for PC user). It’s fast, it handles most file types with ease, and the videos it produces don’t hog precious iPad space.  Just drag the video you want to convert, select iPad output profile and click on the Start button.

If you want video that will also look good on ipad’s higher-resolution screen, select the 720p MPG4 output option. This will create a higher-resolution files that you can enjoy on iPad’s large screen. If you’re not happy with the results, you can always increase the Quality setting, or click on the Settings button and tweak the frame size, bit rate, and so on.

Tag it

Once you’ve encoded your files, it’d be nice if they showed up on your iPad as nicely organized as if you’d purchased them from the iTunes Store. But they’re not going to unless you tag each file. You could use iTunes to add tag information like season, episode name, and number, but its interface for this job isn’t great.

A better solution is to use a program to tag files before you import them into iTunes. My favorite application for this purpose is Parsley is Atomically Delicious, James Huston’s free graphical interface for the command-line MP4 metadata editor AtomicParsley. Use Parsley to tag TV shows, movies, and music videos with all the necessary info so they show up in the right place on your iPad.