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Old October 6th, 2004, 04:44 PM   #1
Inner Circle
 
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Windows Media encoding times?

Question for David Newman and others: what are typical encoding times from a finished HDV editing timeline to the Windows Media format at 720p and 1080i resolutions? I saw one article by Steve Mullen in which it took forty (40) minutes per minute of 1080i HDV to encode to Windows Media using Sony Vegas on a fast single-processor computer. That's way too long, so hopefully other software is more efficient for this step?
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Old October 6th, 2004, 09:02 PM   #2
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I'd be bothered too if an WMV9 HD encode of either 1080i or 720p took 40mins per 1min of video encoded!!

My experience has been that on my 3.4Ghz HT PIV WMV9 encode times are no where near as tardy as 40:1......regardless of encoding in Vegas or TMPGEnc 3XPress.

BTW TMPGEnc 3XPress has some really excellent capabilities for handling HDV (HD) content, and it's implementation of the WMV9 encoder is the most 'elegant' and efficient of those I've tried so far.......
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Old October 7th, 2004, 09:43 AM   #3
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Steve: what are your typical encoding times then for converting HDV to Windows Media HD format? I assume that's from 720p?
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Old October 8th, 2004, 04:15 AM   #4
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<<<-- Originally posted by Kevin Shaw : Steve: what are your typical encoding times then for converting HDV to Windows Media HD format? I assume that's from 720p? -->>>

Yes....from 720p.

Depending on the bit-rate the time varies from around the 5min encode time per min of video, to around 2min per 60sec.

This also is with the WMV9 encoder set to progressive and CBR Single Pass, so the encoder isn't being loaded up with extra high memory bandwidth functions.

The higher in bit-rate towards that of the original you go, the faster the encoder works, which is logical, as the compression algorithm doesn't have so much data to re-generate. (Some of the fastest WMV9 encodes I've done were at the 19,300Mbit rate of the HD10's ts stream)

Of course if you were outputting using VBR, multiple pass, interlaced with motion compensation......then that would slow things up!

Always double check the Custom options available in the encoder.....you'll be able to find a setting that'll work with a good balance of speed Vs quality.
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Old October 9th, 2004, 10:42 PM   #5
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Steve: if we use your figures and say a typical 720p --> WMV encode takes about 3-4 minutes using constant bit rate, then assume roughly twice that amount for variable bit rate, and multiply by 1.7 for the increased data requirements of 1080i versus 720p, we get roughly 10-14 minutes per minute of 1080i timeline to encode WMV using VBR. This means a 90 minute DVD project could easily take 15-20 hours to encode to WMV HD, and heaven help you if your computer locks up or you decide you need to redo the encode for some reason. Even with CBR we're looking at a minimum of eight hours to encode a 90 minute DVD. Ugh.
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Old October 10th, 2004, 09:24 AM   #6
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<<<-- Originally posted by Kevin Shaw : Steve: if we use your figures and say a typical 720p --> WMV encode takes about 3-4 minutes using constant bit rate, then assume roughly twice that amount for variable bit rate, and multiply by 1.7 for the increased data requirements of 1080i versus 720p, we get roughly 10-14 minutes per minute of 1080i timeline to encode WMV using VBR. This means a 90 minute DVD project could easily take 15-20 hours to encode to WMV HD, and heaven help you if your computer locks up or you decide you need to redo the encode for some reason. Even with CBR we're looking at a minimum of eight hours to encode a 90 minute DVD. Ugh. -->>>

That seems about right & puts it on a par with the encodes/conversions that I've done of 1080i HD FTA for DVD.
Anyone who's done this sort of thing to DVD level knows it ain't 'real-time'!!! The consolation is....you only have to do it once (unless you spot a cock-up!!!) per each finished production.

I'd only be using WMV9 HD for small web distribution stuff at the moment.... When DVD players capable of playing it are released, you'll be able to tackle longer projects and reap the benefits of HD resolution.
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Old October 11th, 2004, 10:50 AM   #7
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For what it's worth, Sonic recently announced the pending introduction of a real-time, hardware based Windows Media encoder. Based on their pricing for previous similar DV products I'd expect this to be ridiculously expensive, but hopefully someone will eventually come up with an affordable real-time WM HD solution.
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Old October 11th, 2004, 07:01 PM   #8
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FWIW a quick test encode on a 2.8GHz P4 took 20 minutes for a 1 minute clip.

This was with the default 720p30 WM9 preset that comes with PPro 1.5 but with the audio set back to stereo instead of Dolby 5.1. Everything else was left at default.

Haven't tried any encodings of the Sony content yet.
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