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DVD to iPod | How To Convert A DVD to iPod


Posted by Patrick, 41 Comments

Good News! This DVD to iPod tutorial is now outdated, but the newer DVD to iPod tutorial using easier software is here: “How To Do An Unbelievably Easy DVD to iPod Conversion Tutorial”.

For this DVD to iPod tutorial, all you need to do is download DVD43, which runs in the background, and Nero Recode, which is a very easy to use and professional program. We’ve made a step-by-step tutorial to show you how to rip all of your protected and unprotected DVDs to your iPod. To convert your DVDs to iPod, read on.

DVD to iPod Programs:

  • DVD43 version 4.3.1 (Download for free here).
  • Nero Recode version (Download trial here).

Premium DVD to iPod Program:

  • If you want a simpler way to convert your DVD to iPod (MP4), we highly recommend using a pay program. One of our favorites is the Cucusoft DVD to iPod converter (trial available for free here). It’s cheap, but saves you loads of time and is extremely effective.

DVD to iPod Instructions:

1) After installing both DVD to iPod programs, be sure to reboot your computer to ensure they run properly. Once you have rebooted, launch DVD43 so that it runs down in the taskbar. It will look like a yellow or green face. You don’t have to configure anything for DVD43, it works automatically.

2) Insert your DVD into your computer’s DVD-ROM drive. If DVD43 is able to decrypt your DVD (DVD43 should be able to do about 99% of encrypted DVDs), you will see a green face in your taskbar like the one shown below.

DVD to iPod Tutorial

Green smiley face means we’re all set. On with the rest of the tutorial.

3) Go ahead and open up Nero Recode. Select “Recode DVDs and Videos to Nero Digital” as shown below. This is the program that will convert our DVDs to iPod format.

DVD to iPod Tutorial

4) Click the “Import Files” button (arrow #1). From the drop-down menu (arrow #2), choose the DVD you would like to convert to iPod format (arrow #3).

DVD to iPod Tutorial

5) Double-click “Title 1″ (your title may be different) under the “Main Movie” header. If yours is not called “Title 1,” there should only be one file under “Main Movie.” Just double click it, as this is the main movie minus the bonus footage and random empty video cells. This is the video that will end up playing on your iPod once it is converted.

DVD to iPod Tutorial

After double clicking, a box will popup that analyzes your DVD. It took our DVD about 2 minutes to analyze, but this speed will vary widely depending on your computer’s capabilities. The program is just figuring out the technical details about the DVD before it converts it to iPod format.  When it is done analyzing, click “Close” on the bottom of the foreground window.

6) On the main screen, select the “Subtitle” tab (arrow #1) and choose what you want from the drop-down menu (arrow #2), if any. We chose not to have any visible subtitles, as most users will not want them on their iPod. Next, uncheck the “Fit to target” checkbox (arrow #3). After that, adjust the “Video Quality” slider (arrow #4) to change the size of the output file. The lower the quality the smaller the file. I chose a quality that gave me an output file that was approximately 650mb, as I feel this is an efficient size for my iPod while retaining some pretty high quality. If you want the highest quality, it will take up a significant amount of space, but it will look slightly better on your iPod.

DVD to iPod Tutorial

7) This next step deals with the quality of the output file. Click on the “More” button (arrow #1) at the bottom of the screen to bring up extra options. Click the “Configure” button (arrow #2). Click the “Nero Digital” tab (arrow #3). By choosing to do a 2nd pass, this means that the video file will essentially be encoded twice, which increases the quality and removes any small errors from the first encoding. While a 2nd pass is not entirely necessary, I do recommend it because it increases quality significantly if the 1st pass has errors in it for some reason. The only downside is that it takes twice as long to encode the DVD to the movie file since you’re encoding it twice. It’s up to you, but we recommend a 2nd pass as shown below (arrow #4). If you want to convert DVD to iPod faster and in fewer steps, check out our newer tutorial at http://ipodlegends.com/unbelievably-easy-dvd-to-ipod-tutorial/.

DVD to iPod Tutorial

8) This next step changes the resolution of the DVD video so that it can play on your iPod’s screen. Click the “Video” button (arrow #1) on the right-hand side of the screen to bring up the “Nero Digital Video Settings” window. Select the “Resize” tab (arrow #2) and select the “Custom Resize” button (arrow #3). For width (arrow #4) enter 320, and for height (arrow #5) enter 240. Your iPod’s screen supports 320×240, so this just makes sure that your DVD will play properly on your iPod.

Click “OK,” and click “Next” in the bottom right to proceed.

DVD to iPod Tutorial

9) The last thing to do before your DVD converts to iPod format! On the next screen, you can choose the destination folder for your output video file. By default it is the “Nero Recode” folder under “My Documents.” You may change it if you like.

Select the “Nero Digital Settings” panel (arrow #1) and select the “Advanced” header (arrow #2). Check the “Simple Profile (Quicktime (TM) Compatability)” box (arrow #3). After this is done, click “Burn” at the bottom right.

DVD to iPod Tutorial

10) Your DVD is now encoding into an iPod-playable video file. It took the test machine about 26 minutes to encode our test DVD, and it will take longer if you choose to do the 2nd pass like we did to ensure quality.

When the file is done, simply import it into iTunes, transfer it to your iPod, and enjoy!

Here’s a picture of the working DVD on my iPod:

DVD to iPod Tutorial

I hope this guide helps you convert DVD to iPod for good. I’ve encountered absolutely no errors with this method after numerous tests and conversions. However, if you run into issues or have any general feedback, please post a comment below. We love hearing feedback! Let us know if it worked for you. If it took too long, check out our newer DVD to iPod tutorial at http://ipodlegends.com/unbelievably-easy-dvd-to-ipod-tutorial/.

Remember, iPod Legends doesn’t condone illegal pirating or conversion of DVDs. Only do this with your own purchased movies that you have the rights to use in the above manner. Make sure you always conform to your applicable laws.

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Tags: Tutorials

41 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Edna // Jun 27, 2008 at 10:05 am


  • 2 Mrs. Ballsack // Jul 1, 2008 at 2:15 am

    That is a bad ass tutorial

  • 3 TC // Jul 8, 2008 at 9:51 pm

    Thanks! This ROCKS!!!

  • 4 Washan // Jul 14, 2008 at 8:30 pm

    It chingón are well vergas the movies
    but I have a problem …
    are not subtitles, if I can haver made a hand
    I do not know if I have to see that windows vista

  • 5 AppleDaddy // Jul 16, 2008 at 8:58 pm

    The first DVD I tried did NOT have a Title 1 under the Main Movie header (see step 5). It listed Titles 2-8 which were part of the extras only. Undaunted by that, I tried a second DVD which did show a Title 1, at the proper movie length, and it is currently encoding that movie. Is there a “double lock” to some movies that DVD43 cannot handle?

    So this process seems to do some but not all DVDs.


  • 6 Verinox // Jul 19, 2008 at 10:29 am

    I’ve never seen it just not show a Title 1. That could be some new kind of protection that DVD43 doesn’t handle on the fly, but that seems kind of strange that it just wouldn’t allow Title 1 to show up on your computer. I mean, the thing has to play, after all, and I’m assuming that it also wouldn’t show in a DVD player program because I doubt it can differentiate between the different programs that are accessing it. Give me a little more info about what the DVD is and I’ll see if I can replicate your error.

  • 7 Tom // Jul 27, 2008 at 7:40 am

    I get really bad pixelation on my ipod, but it is fine on my computer…… HELP!
    Other than that great!!!!

  • 8 Verinox // Jul 28, 2008 at 8:38 pm

    can you give us some more information? maybe your iPod is damaged in some way, or you don’t have the same settings in Nero as outlined in this guide.

  • 9 Lemontree // Jul 28, 2008 at 11:33 pm

    Firstly, thank you for a comprehensive tutorial! So far, so good on my first try. The only thing I did differently was to leave the screen ration at the default setting. It looked about right for my iPhone! I’ll let you all know how it turns out! Thanks again for an easy conversion how-to!

  • 10 jez // Jul 29, 2008 at 2:53 pm

    does this work on a sony mp3, screen size is the same.
    the model is nwz a828 ,thanks…….

  • 11 Jith // Jul 31, 2008 at 12:58 am

    This is a great tutorial. Thank you for writing this up for all of us. It works just fine. Now I can watch some of my favorite DVDs on the go.

    Thank you so much.

  • 12 Trevir Murray // Aug 2, 2008 at 12:24 am

    Hi thanks for the tutorial. Everything works great till I press burn at the end it goes to the burn screen and it shows the video but it stops after a couple seconds. What is wrong. Help. My email is trevir132@hotmail.com

  • 13 Gnoop // Aug 3, 2008 at 5:37 pm

    I’ve got some DVDs of music clips I’d like to seperate into individuals mp4 clips to put on to PS3. Can I use this procedure or is there a more simple process? Cheers

  • 14 Greg // Aug 5, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    Well it’s working in the background but I find it strange that the dvd can be seen on this tutorial site(you’re nero tutorial images) whilst it’s working in the background. hmmm..

  • 15 isg // Aug 7, 2008 at 11:11 pm

    Excellent. Thanks for taking the time to share such great info.

    I look forward to reading more great tips!

  • 16 i'll try this // Aug 17, 2008 at 12:49 pm


  • 17 Cakes // Aug 25, 2008 at 2:15 am

    The first DVD I inserted (Casino Royale) did not work at all, Nero said it was write-protected. The second DVD (Juno) seemed to work perfectly, but when I play the file in iTunes, it has no sound. Anyone else have this problem or know why it would happen?

  • 18 Verinox // Aug 25, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    are you sure you had DVD43 installed and working properly?

  • 19 Joe // Sep 6, 2008 at 11:58 am

    It says my Nero Recode trial has ran out?!?!?!?

  • 20 Lol // Sep 7, 2008 at 11:30 pm

    Lol @ Joe

  • 21 Dan // Sep 8, 2008 at 4:32 pm

    This worked awesome until Nero Recode trial has run out like other user above mentioned. What can I do to continue this great conversion???

  • 22 Verinox // Sep 8, 2008 at 10:13 pm

    Like economists say, “there is no free lunch.” If you still want an easy way to do it, check out our other guide for Cucusoft’s DVD to iPod Converter – it’s insanely easy and it’s cheap. You can see it at http://ipodlegends.com/unbelievably-easy-dvd-to-ipod-tutorial/

  • 23 Toshy // Sep 15, 2008 at 6:45 am

    Very Very good information, in the process of ripping first DVD. Doing Lord Of The Rings for my ipod so its basically 2 titles per disk, 2 disks per film, 3 films , 12 in total. That’s not including the added features on the disks but im sure 12 hours of films will do. Thanks alot.

  • 24 DVD to MP4 | How To Convert A DVD to iPod (MP4) For Free // Oct 2, 2008 at 9:07 am

    [...] Check our DVD to iPod tutorial for an updated version of this [...]

  • 25 Bee // Oct 14, 2008 at 6:53 pm

    Hey, thanks for this great tutorial! It seems I’ve been having a bit of a problem with Nero, though. It gets to 1% in Analyzing, then stops and says “Data Error: cyclic redundancy check.” Does anyone know what this could mean, and how to get past it? Thanks!

  • 26 Costa // Nov 28, 2008 at 11:04 pm

    Bought ipod touch 2nd gen for daughter and am looking forward to converting a few movies for her before I wrap it up for X’Mas. What resolution should I be using for this, width and height??? Thanks for a great tutorial.

  • 27 Matthew // Nov 29, 2008 at 3:24 pm

    What are the dimensions for iPod Touch Videos?

  • 28 Verinox // Nov 29, 2008 at 10:39 pm

    The iPod touch’s resolution is 480 pixels wide by 320 pixels high, aka 480×320

  • 29 Costa // Dec 3, 2008 at 10:39 pm

    Followed directions. Movie would play on itunes program on computer. Movie transferred to itouch and is on the itouch under videos but when I try to play it, all I get is a blue screen. It appears to be running on the itouch because the counter is moving but no picture or sound. Any help would be much appreciated.

  • 30 james // Dec 6, 2008 at 6:32 am

    hi there. using a newer version of recode. get a message ‘an error occurred in direct show. failed to run graph’. does anyone have a theory as to why this happens? any comments appreciated.

  • 31 Verinox // Dec 6, 2008 at 12:53 pm

    it probably has something to do with a codec pack you installed before. i know the “k-lite codec pack” that’s really popular uses directshow to decode some media formats, and it sounds like that’s what might be happening to you. not sure about the exact source of the error, though… it could be any number of things.

  • 32 JT // Dec 25, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    I was wondering if movies I’ve already ripped to blank DVDs will transfer to my new IPOD. I’m new to this so I’m not sure how it works. I think I used AnyDVD to rip the movies. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!

  • 33 Verinox // Dec 25, 2008 at 12:37 pm

    JT – as a general rule of thumb, if it plays in a regular old DVD player, then it should work using the above tutorial. As long as it’s in DVD format on the disc, it should work. If you ripped the DVD into a video file (like a .mpeg or .avi or something) check out one of our tutorials on converting videos to play on your iPod.

  • 34 Andy // Dec 25, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Works but volume levels are really low…any way to get more volume? Or is it a setting on our new iTouch ?

  • 35 Jenna // Jan 4, 2009 at 2:23 am

    I’m awful with computers, how do I import it to iTunes? Thanks bunches!

  • 36 Verinox // Jan 4, 2009 at 11:45 pm

    Just drag the converted video file into the iTunes window, and it should automatically add it. Alternatively, you can load iTunes, go to File, then Add File to Library, and select the video. It will then import into iTunes, and you can add it to your iPod just like you would a regular song.

  • 37 Steve // Jan 16, 2009 at 10:48 am

    Many thanks for the info, works a treat with my Archos 5

  • 38 ikathryn // Jun 24, 2009 at 8:13 am

    I managed to convert my DVDs a while back using this method but today I was told my Nero Recode free trial had ended and I had to purchase it. I wasn’t aware that I was using a trial version. I thought the software was free.

  • 39 ikathryn // Jun 24, 2009 at 8:17 am

    Never mind. I re-downloaded it and it installed an updated version which works fine. This tutorial is great, thanks a lot.

  • 40 ikathryn // Jun 24, 2009 at 8:20 am

    Oh no it doesn’t. Sorry for the three comments. It says that MPEG-4 decoding and encoding is no longer available and I have to buy an upgrade. I’m wondering if others are having this problem.

  • 41 Bob // Feb 2, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    does it rip the dvd so u cant whatch it as normal dvd???????

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