Authoring BluRay For BD-R

I've compiled my notes on authoring BluRay content on BD (instead of DVDs) using Roxio Toast to give you a head start - by David R. Beebe
Toast Pro DVD Authoring

Written by Elgato and sold by Roxio, Toast 10 allows the creation of up to 30 minutes of Blu-Ray compatible video to be written to a standard DVD however, this will create a smaller file than the same source written to BD even when there is enough room on the DVD.

Important Note: Video from FCE only works with Toast 10.01 or 10.02. Versions 10.04 and 10.06 kick off a source material error, -18771 but the later versions support chapter marks. One suggestion is to use 10.02 to encode then stop the process saving the working files. Move them into a later version which will skip the encode and begin at the disk multiplexing step. I just accept the default chapter markers every 5 minutes. Toast 11 generates problems with rewind and fast forward operations and the video on DVD (and BD) terminates just seconds before the actual end so there is some kind of buffering issue. Every release introduces more problems with Toast. If only there was a better option.

I did discover that writing the project to a disc image rather than to an actual disc with Toast 10 added a brief audio drop at around 25 minutes that was not there if writing to a disc and then reading the disc and saving to a disc image.

Set-up Blu-Ray Video:

Add the not-self-contained QT video file exported from FCE to a BD Video project. Edit that entry and set the thumbnail and edit text properties of each clip and move up the duration (line 3) to overwrite burn date (line 2) for disc info. Also set the video thumbnail for the menu.

Menu Style: Passport 16x9 (change button highlight color from default Yellow to Gray), Aspect ratio Widescreen. I’ve had mixed results with Auto Play On Insert under disc tab, change the disc and menu default title “My Movie” to the appropriate title on the Menus tab.

Burn Blu-Ray On BD25-R:

I am using an external OWC Mercury Pro with an LG WH12LS39 BD reader/writer over Firewire 800 since my iMac i7 does not support an eSATA connection. The manual prefers BD-Rs from Sony or Panasonic but I have had great success with Verbatim (much better than with the Optical Quantum BD-Rs packaged with the burner).

What went wrong:

I first tried to burn a disc image first with Toast 10 however, the first attempt was supposed to require 16BG created a 25.53GB file which was too large to fit on BD-25. Switched to Toast 11 (each time I switch I have to reinstall the appropriate HD Plug-in for that version). The first attempt to write directly to BD25-R failed without ever writing to the disc so I switched the encoding settings to the default “Best”. This used all but 2GB of the 25GB. Despite taking a really long time to create with 2 hours of content (and sustaining the internal temp of the iMac to 158F), the next morning the disc was created. I typically do not clear Toast’s cache files until I am absolutely certain that I won’t need them.

I tried twice to copy the newly burned BD25-R to a Toast disc image and both failed indicating that a data recovery option could be set to help. Both times, the LG burner went offline and had to be power cycled.

For the third attempt, I went back to the saved project file (.disc) and tried to save a disc image directly from Toast 11 which did the muxing. It was able to reuse the previously generated cache files and parsed through the multiplexing stage in a few minutes. Unfortunately, Toast became unresponsive and required a force quit.

For BD, when I try to save a disc image from the encoded project, it fails with a message that I can find no details for from a google search:
Couldn't Complete The Last Command Because Of A Mac OS Error: Result Code=-50

One attempt contained 5 titles totaling 2:02:00. The resulting video was stunning except the next to the last title would only play black for a few seconds then return to the menu. It was not the longest video either. All other titles played as expected. The missing video rendered just fine to another BD so there was nothing wrong with the source. I eventually cleared Roxio’s cache and tried again overnight. This time it worked.

What finally worked:

The most successful workflow mirrors what I did all along for BluRay to DVD - Toast 10.02 muxing QT AIC source material from FCE with Best encoding setting directly to Verbatim BD25-R. The LG burner took full advantage of the 6x write capability of the BD-Rs (the drive is capable of up to 12x write). Once complete, mount the BD and copy it to a disc image for safe keeping and making additional copies later.

You can play a mounted BD disc image with either the embedded Roxio Video Player (found in the Toast application package) or VLC.