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Old June 28th, 2008, 12:26 AM   #1
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Best Format for Web Video

Hello All,

I'm curious as to what your opinions are on what the best format to use for publishing video on a website. Taking into consideration the social networks like YouTube and Facebook, but also, what might be the best format and configuration for putting client's video up on their websites.

Thanks, your opinions mean a lot to me :-)
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Old July 2nd, 2008, 09:47 AM   #2
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I'll second that! I post online for my newspaper's website but I'm looking to get higher quality video online.

I'm shooting with a PAN DVX-100BP, editing on FCP and/or AVID. What would be the optimal export settings to publish a video online and maintain a clean image that can be viewed in real time with a typical broadband connection?

I found this article on the B&H newsletter that was some help:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/find/new...to-the-Web.jsp

Thanks,

-C
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Old July 2nd, 2008, 10:06 AM   #3
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Yes, this is an increasingly important subject.

I know that our brothers and sisters here must be involved in it to varying degrees, I'd like to hear what their experiences are.
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Old July 2nd, 2008, 10:56 AM   #4
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I went through this same predicament a couple months ago for a client of mine. If you want it to be seen by most computers, Flash Video is definitely the way to go as it is can be played on over 90% of computers. With some experimentation, you can get it to look good with a decent file size as well.

H264 also creates a great image at a relatively small file size as well. It just isn't as universal as Flash Video right now.

If nobody else responds, search the previous posts and I think you should be able to find some more information. Good luck.
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Old July 2nd, 2008, 12:12 PM   #5
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My opinion would be this:

MP4 followed by FLV.

The new flash can play .h264 video and it looks great. The downside is you need a newer flash player which is slowly being adopted. At this point you have two options. If you have a decent flash player such as the JW FLV player you can set a fall back to an FLV Version or a message telling people to upgrade. If they have the right version they see a great video if not, they see the FLV version or they see the message.

Here is an example .h264 file in an MP4 container played by a flash player:
!!!This is not my video and I did not encode it!!!
http://www.simplethoughtproductions....ash_streaming/

While I did not encode it it still shows what is possible. In sort. Use flash and pick one of its two great video formats.
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Old July 2nd, 2008, 03:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Sonnenburg View Post
H264 also creates a great image at a relatively small file size as well. It just isn't as universal as Flash Video right now.
As Josh points out, ....errr....Flash currently plays H.264 - we use it on our website all the time - in fact, the Flash Player has played H.264 for several versions now.
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Old July 2nd, 2008, 08:45 PM   #7
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I'd agree with the previous posts. Flash has the widest acceptance and most of the world already has the player installed. If they don't, it's a painless download and a couple of clicks away. Not terribly familiar with the latest goodies in the current Flash player, but H.264 is the coming thing.

Can't really say which codec will give the best quality. If you're interested, you might try encoding with both to see which you and the poobahs like better. Encoding quality can depend upon the video content. Some video may look better with one codec over another. Trial and error might get you there if you have the time. Otherwise, the regular Flash is the path of least resistance.
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Old July 2nd, 2008, 10:50 PM   #8
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Flash Video is the way to go. Small, fast and there 95% chance your client already have everything they need to watch the video on their pc. My second choice would be WMV. It can also produce hi quality files while keeping output very small in size.

As for an encoding tool, take a look at Sorenson Squeeze. They have a lot of presets and it's really easy to use. Not cheap but really powerful. Lastest version support both FLV and WMV with all the latest codec.
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Old July 3rd, 2008, 11:06 AM   #9
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Thanks all,

I've been using Sorenson Squeeze and it works great. The bosses want us to use a small fast file so it doesn't take any time to load, which is nice, but this is what we get:

http://www.thespectrum.com/apps/pbcs...9/-1/FRONTPAGE

It's just a lot more pixellated that I like.

-C
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Old July 4th, 2008, 07:59 AM   #10
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Is that just the spark encoder or ON2VP6? If it is not ON2VP6 it might be worth a try. It is a compression closer to h264 so it can look better than spark even at the same bitrate.
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Old July 24th, 2008, 12:21 PM   #11
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Flash is the way to go. It will play back both flv and H.264 files.

We encode H.264 with sorenson squeeze or compressor. One thing to be aware of is that compressor will give a softer looking result, and you will need to tweek the contrast settings and gamma for best results.


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Old September 5th, 2008, 07:28 PM   #12
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To revive this topic, FlowPlayer just updated their player so that you can encode a high quality H.264 movie for people with a recent Flash plugin (upgraded since December 2007), but yet falls back to an old-school FLV for people who have not upgraded their plugin.

To me, this is the best of both worlds- a great quality H.264 movie for the hip and savvy, but still a FLV fallback so that Grandma can still view the video on her 5 year old PC (on which she has never upgraded anything).

FlowPlayer offers a free GPL player with a watermark, or various licenses.

Here is the relevant page:

Flowplayer

Our new encoding program, DV Kitchen, will encode FLV and H.264 movies and upload them, and we will support this smart dual movie scheme with FlowPlayer soon, but for now you have to copy and paste a few URLs from the Media Publishing tab.

I am going to do a tutorial movie on this next week.
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Old September 5th, 2008, 08:56 PM   #13
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Why is it that flash has the greatest market share yet it seems like not many NLE's can render to flash? You have to buy a separate software to encode it right? I know Vegas doesn't encode it.
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Old September 5th, 2008, 09:22 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Mellicker View Post
To revive this topic, FlowPlayer just updated their player so that you can encode a high quality H.264 movie for people with a recent Flash plugin (upgraded since December 2007), but yet falls back to an old-school FLV for people who have not upgraded their plugin.

To me, this is the best of both worlds- a great quality H.264 movie for the hip and savvy, but still a FLV fallback so that Grandma can still view the video on her 5 year old PC (on which she has never upgraded anything).

FlowPlayer offers a free GPL player with a watermark, or various licenses.

Here is the relevant page:

Flowplayer

Our new encoding program, DV Kitchen, will encode FLV and H.264 movies and upload them, and we will support this smart dual movie scheme with FlowPlayer soon, but for now you have to copy and paste a few URLs from the Media Publishing tab.

I am going to do a tutorial movie on this next week.

Glad to see they started supporting fall back finally :) It has been very useful but After seeing the majority of my viewers reporting 9.0.115 or greater I just switched all to Mp4. I display a nice link for them to upgrade if neeeded.
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Old September 5th, 2008, 10:07 PM   #15
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Flash is H.264 is the best choice although I find its cpu intensive and older machines tend to drop frames. It also takes a long time to encode.
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