Converting DTS audio to AC3 (.mkv file container) on OS X

I have a lot of .mkv files that contain the audio as a DTS stream, which usually means that it can’t be read by my particular brand of media player (Netgear EVA8000). The DTS audio stream requires a paid for license to decode and/or special equipment  to deal with the codec. However the AC3 codec which is another Dolby Digital codec has a free library implementation meaning that there are no licensing issues with using this codec, hence it being used with my media player. This obviously resulted in trawling the internet to find some solution to carrying out this conversion, which led me to this windows only solution:

— VID2EVA http://www.vid2eva.com/

This can be used on a mac by downloading virtualbox / vmware fusion / parallels and creating an XP machine and installing it in there and it will work fine.

However the issue that I personally have is that, the amount of extra CPU cycles needed for a virtualization layer sitting between the heavy amount of re-encoding of a data stream just bugs me. After a bit more research I found a script called mkvdts2ac3 that replaces the GUI of VID2EVA and with the right third party binaries will allow you to complete the re-encoding. A look into what would be required to build these third party binaries led me to a few other guides telling you to install xcode, download various tools, compile this, install that…  It took quite a bit of messing around however I’ve gotten all of the Intel binaries sorted and the script and packaged them for convenience

— Please find the archive (tar.gz) here

–Installation instructions

Once extracted their will be a bin and a lib directory. As root move everything from the bin to /usr/local/bin directory, and move everything from the lib directory to /usr/local/lib directory.

–Usage

Open Terminal.app and execute mkvdts2ac3 as normal.

iPhone 3G unlock for a UK iPhone

UPDATE: Version 0.9.6 has been released, and …. I can confirm that T-mobile works on an iPhone in the UK 🙂

I think it’s prudent to inform anyone reading this article, that it didn’t work. However I have read on a couple of forums that this is due to changes made in version 0.9.5, which should be repaired when 0.9.6 comes out any day now. I would like to also point out that as good as the iPhone-dev team are, the naming of their software (yellowsn0w) conjures up images of spotty 15 year old kids saying things such as “hax0r” and “zOMG”.

So, i’ve written a quick how-to for installing the unlock on the iPhone which when a new version comes out may be relevant. So read on for more details …