PS vs ES, DVDs: VOBs and IFOs

What’s the difference between PS and ES? Both are referenced in VideoLAN and the assumption is the reader knows what they are.

Well, here’s a simple description (since I’m just learning it myself): PS stands for Program Stream and contains both video and audio. ES is Elementary Stream wherein the video stream is separate from the audio stream. The video stream is normally an M2V or an MPV file and the audio is stored in MPA, M2A or AC3. Generally, neither PS nor ES files are readable by DVD players.

DVD players typically read VOBs which are very closely related to files in the PS format. The VIDEO_TS folder on a DVD will contain both VOBs and IFOs. No VOB can be larger than 1GB so the IFO tells the player how to combine the VOBs into the original program. If you want to join together all VOBs into a single file, you can somply concatenate them (Linux: cat *.VOB > one-big-vob.mpg, Windows: copy /b vob1.vob + vob2.vob + vob3.vob one-big-vob.mpg — thanks to Video Redo for a lot of this information, including the Windows copy command).

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