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Old July 19th, 2005, 05:39 PM   #31
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Patrick: I too have ignored movies posted here because of the wmv suffix.

the thing i really dislike about wmv is that it doesn't stream, it downloads to my already packed G4 hard drive, and since i took up video, i need all the space i can get. i much prefer to stream video whenever possible.

my brother, who designs TV systems for a living, thinks H.264 is definitely the future standard and that i should just keep compressing in that format and get my audience up to the standard, which he perceives as inevitable..."a year out" is how he casually described it. seems as if it is already decided off in the future.

i don't know if i agree philosophically with foisting the format on the audience--i just want people to be able to watch my video with relative ease, dammit--, but he is usually fairly prescient about the future these sorts of things.
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Old July 19th, 2005, 06:09 PM   #32
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Meryem,

I like the idea of not having to download videos to watch them, but I HATE the fact that I never make it through a whole streaming video without it stopping to buffer more content. And I have pretty dang good cable modem throughput:

Communications 2.4 megabits per second
Storage: 288.2 kilobytes per second
1MB file download: 3.6 seconds
Subjective rating: Great

So in practice, I've put a shortcut to the Recycle Bin in the My Documents folder. I download videos to that folder and then just empty the Recycle Bin once a day. After I start a download, I just go back to other business until complete and then when the download is complete, I watch it uninterrupted.
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Old July 19th, 2005, 07:45 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meryem Ersoz
And don't get me started with the Compressor options!

If I am just trying to compress a standard MiniDV - NTSC - 4:1:1 image for basic (streaming) web delivery, which is the best option?

What I am trying to get at, is, which choice, straight from Final Cut Pro's array of choices will maximize my exposure, since H.264, the default setting, is obviously not there yet?

I may have a very weak and imperfect understanding of what Apple is up to here, but it seems to me that FCP is (perhaps prematurely) anticipating HD settings by setting the default to H.264. But that doesn't serve me right now, in terms of reaching maximum audience. ... I am less engaged by the academic debates and more interested in being able to send a link to a friend and have him or her be able to view it without a big hairball ensuing on the other end.

Am I making sense?
Maryem,
You are making this far more complicated than it need be. When you Export using QuickTime Conversion, you are invoking the standard QuickTime Pro compression utility. Don't read anything into the default setting. Apple is doing what it can to promote the use of H.264 and so set the default when QT7 is installed. You'd probably do the same.

If you had instead Exported using Compressor, you would have found a list of presets with all those parameters you listed taken care of for you. You will also get better results using Compressor as it has access to and uses the advanced compression features of the underlying QT subsystem. The QT utility does not use the advanced features. But if you insist, on using the QT utility, select QuickTime Movie and DSL/Cable - Medium. That will give you a 320x240 MPEG-4.

To get improved results, going straight from FCP to a format that anyone can play, do as I recommended earlier:
Select your sequence in the bin window
Select File->Export using Compressor
Under the MPEG-4 NTSC Source Material twistie, select
MPEG-4 Improved NTSC for Fast Cable Streaming
Change the ISMA Profile to "Improved" and the Bit Rate to HIGH VBR.

The only hairball that will result is the one that occurs here because you chose a format counter to the agenda of certain members.

Last edited by Les Wilson; July 20th, 2005 at 06:31 PM. Reason: improved wording
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Old July 19th, 2005, 09:27 PM   #34
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You may be missing half the equation on your ideas about streaming. Streaming media requires a streaming capable server. Most web sites that folks use are not streaming servers. When a person parks a video clip, no matter what the format, on a web site, it will probably not stream. You will experience spots where it will come to a halt and then take off again. You will have to wait until the entire clip is downloaded to your system and cached.

A streaming server leaves no files behind. A streaming server sends chunks that are cached and played out but not the entire clip.

I have several clips parked on a server right now as QT files. They are however in a format called Progressive Download that allows the QT player to stack up chunks and begin playing them before the entire file is downloaded to cache.

I used to run my own true streaming server based on Linux from my home. I had a static IP so it was easy. I streamed MP3s, had a streaming radio station and hosted lots of QT and WMV files as well as a real server.

Just be aware that if you don't have a streaming server, it isn't really streaming.

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Old July 19th, 2005, 10:36 PM   #35
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Ernest, thanks again for the tips. I'm merely trying to learn about and understand something brand new (to me), and the nuances of its mystifying, competing languages.

I'm not digging the characterization of "complaining" --it's a complete misinterpretation of my intent. The FCP manuals are pretty useless, so I resurrected this thread in search of help. I have no other agenda.
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Old July 20th, 2005, 12:37 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meryem Ersoz
the thing i really dislike about wmv is that it doesn't stream, it downloads to my already packed G4 hard drive, and since i took up video, i need all the space i can get. i much prefer to stream video whenever possible.
there was a similar sort of complaint in this forum before about that same issue of mac-based wmv players "not streaming"... it was suggested that the person take a look at the settings of their player, because the length of the cache can be set to whatever you want... including downloading most or all of the entire streaming clip before it plays.

if you are running on the ragged edge of storage space like that, you should get it fixed, because you are in danger of crashing the hard drive... drives need ~10% or so of free space to function properly.

qt 7 is the most dysfunctional qt release i have ever seen... you can play a non-streaming clip from anywhere(?), and it refuses to allow you to save it out to somewhere else from within the player... the nagware message comes up for everything.

there can't be a qt-based "itunes movie store" without qt drm, the movie studios will never agree to unsecure movie downloading.
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Old July 20th, 2005, 06:48 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meryem Ersoz
I'm not digging the characterization of "complaining" --it's a complete misinterpretation of my intent.
Sorry about that. Didn't mean it negatively. Can I get partial credit for saying "Kinda Complaining"? :-)

I edited my posting and reworded it to say "...you listed..." instead of "...you complained about...". Thanks for the polite response. Also, the agenda comment wasn't directed at you.

Please understand that you have chosen to learn about compression with a professional level product and it's going to be bewildering. I'm actually trying to help you find a simple approach from which you can experiment and learn on your own.

I learned FCP (back in the 2.0 days) using the tutorial that came in the package. It's only a 1/4 thick and goes quickly. You may find it beneficial now that you've got some "learn by experiment" experience. Also, don't forget the online help. You can often find a step by step on what you want to do and the fact that it's online means you can actually find it (versus thumbing the manuals).
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Old July 21st, 2005, 05:43 PM   #38
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ernest, no hard feelings. your advice was otherwise quite helpful. my own opinions on the subject are decidedly half-baked (maybe more like 1/16 baked, at this point), and i am completely not attached to any of them and solely here to learn...this particular thread, while loaded with the most useful information from a practical standpoint, also seems to be the site of a larger philosophical debate about the platform and its standards, which seems occasionally more of a hindrance to the practical advice portion than helpful, at times. still, useful to hear, if a bit heated periodically. i've learned quite a bit from eavesdropping on the conversation.
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Old August 8th, 2005, 03:17 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meryem Ersoz
If I am just trying to compress a standard MiniDV - NTSC - 4:1:1 image for basic (streaming) web delivery, which is the best option? I can rule out the obvious ones myself, frinstance, I'm obviously not shooting PAL or DVCPRO or HD or a pixlet video, but is there a best choice from among, say, H.261-3-4 or the MPEG-4 Video option. Or is there something lurking in the Sorenson option?

What I am trying to get at, is, which choice, straight from Final Cut Pro's array of choices will maximize my exposure, since H.264, the default setting, is obviously not there yet?

I may have a very weak and imperfect understanding of what Apple is up to here, but it seems to me that FCP is (perhaps prematurely) anticipating HD settings by setting the default to H.264. But that doesn't serve me right now, in terms of reaching maximum audience. So which of these available choices would? Maybe I am just trying to cut corners by requesting advice instead of running a bunch of compression experiments (which seems quite time-consuming), but my commitment is more focused on production than delivery. From the standpoint of delivery, I am less engaged by the academic debates and more interested in being able to send a link to a friend and have him or her be able to view it without a big hairball ensuing on the other end.

Am I making sense?
Meryem, use the Sorenson codec for widest possible use. I encode tons of videos for a university and was initially inclined to export to mp4 because it has a better quality/filesize ratio. However, I quickly learned that not everyone could open these files. While the adoption of mp4 has increased in the few months since I've been doing this, the sorenson codec will be playable on the widest range of quicktime versions and operating systems.
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