I've been using PhotoVidShow for quite a while now mostly for producing dvds. I've seen posts that suggest creating a video file instead of a disc can produce better results. I mostly want this to be watched on TV. I can not quite understand what I need to do. Can anyone explain more.
While DVD is still popular for many people, as you correctly pointed out, you can achieve better results by choosing other output types in PhotoVidShow.
Basically the reason for this is DVD (or DVD-VIDEO to be accurate) is a VERY old format that was originally designed for CRT (bulky) TVs with normal resolution screens.
All TVs sold today are flat screen and can show a progressive HD quality picture (e.g. 1080p).
However, for more modern DVD/Blu-ray players (I.e. ones that connect to your TV via HDMI leads) the player will understand that it is outputting your DVD video to a higher resolution TV, so it does something called ‘up-scaling This can produce good-ish results.
But to produce the best results, you need to create your slideshow at 1080p resolution in the first place (DVD-VIDEO is 720 × 576 pixel resolution whist a normal HD TV will except 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution)
Btw, Photos and video taken from a smart phone will easily be HD quality resolution or higher, so you want a HD output option for best results.
To get a true HD (1080p) slideshow, you need to create a slideshow in PhotoVidShow using the ‘Video file for computer or web’ output option. This can be found at the top of the PhotoVidShow main editor screen. (I.e. change from DVD-Video to ‘Video file for computer or web’)
When you come to create your slideshow, instead of burning to a DVD, PhotoVidShow will make/generate a .mp4 video file of your slideshow on your PC.
If you want to watch your video file (.mp4) slideshow on your TV, there are several options:-
Option1) The easiest option, is to copy the .mp4 video file to a USB stick from your PC and then insert this stick into the media slot on your TV or DVD/Blu-ray player. Most TVs and players will have a media slot on them, and they will recognise media files on them. PhotoVidShow .mp4 video files are very compatible. You may need to refer to the user manual for your TV, on how to play media files from USB.
Option2) Burn the .mp4 video file to DVD as a normal DATA-DISC. Burn to DVD!? I here you ask. Burning to DVD as a data disc is not the same as DVD-VIDEO. Basically modern DVD/Blu-Ray players will often except a data disc, the same as they except a USB stick and will simply play media files they find on it. Older DVD players will only play the usual DVD-VIDEO discs (hence this is why PhotoVidShow burns as DVD-VIDEO). Please note, using data disc method means there is no DVD menu system or similar. The standard burning software that comes with your PC should be able to burn DVD-data discs (simply drag your .mp4 video files into the burning software). The web has many free alternatives. Also your slideshow file size will need to be less than 4.7gig (size of a normal DVD discs)
Option3) Upload your .mp4 video file to somewhere like youtube. Then on your TV, assuming it is connected to the internet and supports youtube playback, simply playback your HD slideshow via youtube. See youtube help on how to upload your video files to their site. Youtube allows private (non public) uploads of video, so no one else can see it, if this is a problem.
Other alternatives include burning to a Blu-ray disc instead of DVD (Blu-ray output option in PhotoVidShow), but you will need a blu-ray burner on your PC to achieve this. This will also produce 1080p HD results.
There is one big drawback to this though in that you can only have one slideshow in the MP4 that is created. Is there any way to create an output that can be put on a memory stick that works like a DVD in that there is a front end menu and multiple slideshows
Short answer is no. This is because video files (like mp4) do not contain any menu (choices) type of data. Basically you have to rely on the specific player on what that can do. (e.g. youtube/ your tv / pc / smart phone etc),