I started testing out the newest iteration of handbrake: 0.95. The new version comes with new presets for the ipad and the new Apple TV. I started with the iPad setting. As always I deselected the “Large File Size” box and selected the “iPod 5g Support” box. I also added a pass thru AC3 audio track in addition to the preset Dolby stereo track.
As you can see the resolution is quite a bit higher than my old iPod preset (870×368 for the new preset vs 720×304 for the old). But the file size is a lot smaller. The smaller resolution file (based off an iPod preset I used in 0.94) is 1.9 GB, but the new one is 1.5 GB, with no real difference in quality. I scanned through the movie and did not notice any differences in compression artifacts, etc… The higher resolution is nice for large screens. Obviously, it looks great on small screens as well.
I have so far tried this on my latest gen iPod Touch, iPhone 3GS and the iPad. It will not work on older iPod video devices, they are stll limited by a width of 720 pixels for video playback.
I played from the 3GS to the new Apple TV via Airplay, and it looked great. I could see some compression artifacts in the background of darker scenes, but generally it looked as good as my other ripped files.
Later I will test some video with the new Apple TV 2 preset.