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The UWOL Challenge
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Old April 11th, 2007, 04:29 AM   #1
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Everything set for uwol3?

Hi all,
it's only about 2 weeks before sign up for uwol3 starts. There was some huge problems for someone to get their films converted in a proper quality and the upload site did not function properly last challenge. Is everything set for the next challenge?
It was said that the upload could be done to this site instead, which I think is good. And I think if bandwith and space allow, the file size should be extended to at least 70MB? The reason for this is that at least in the PC camp, some of the free convertions software out there can't compress (in a decent quality) a 3 min film under 50MB!?
I think this would be fair to contributers who don't afford to buy expensive software to do the compression job only.
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Old April 11th, 2007, 05:02 AM   #2
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Hey Per,

Meryem's away so I'm not sure what all is going on with being able to upload here.
Mat has got the uploader working great on his site.

I need to try a couple other hosting services and see if we can move the uploader there and get it working 100%.

I've been swamped with a few projects, the main one which was completed yesterday so I can get back to focusing on this.

Mat and I are just helping out so anything about file size etc, is all up to Meryem.

I'm looking forward to gettting started on UWOL3 myself!
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Old April 11th, 2007, 05:28 AM   #3
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hey Per
We seem to be fine and dandy on the uploader front as long as we get a host with no time out issues. Quite a few Uwolers have tested the system already with great success :)

One thing to think about though. File size = bandwidth = Cost
As the library of entries grows its going to also be a substantial server space needed.
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Old April 11th, 2007, 09:34 AM   #4
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One of the principal problems for PC'ers was getting a viewable 3-minute file to .mov without using Sorenson Squeeze. Which is a great program, but costs $499.

I now have a flash encoder (FlixPro8), as well as Vegas output options, but I still will have issues getting my file size to under 50mb in .mov.

Is it conceivable to submit Flash files or wmv? or are we stuck with .mov?
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Old April 11th, 2007, 03:00 PM   #5
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That's something Meryem will have to decide when she gets back.
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Old April 11th, 2007, 11:25 PM   #6
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Just a thought,

premiere elements 1 and 2 alows export in sorenson 3 in mov or wmv and you can find that program pretty darn cheap.

To save Server space removing the prior uwol challenges could help keep down the amount of hard drive usage. Perhaps just keep a record of the winners circle.
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Old April 12th, 2007, 10:27 AM   #7
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Maybe I see this a little differently than most but I am fine with the file upload limit and resulting video. I think this contest is about motivating people to create unique video projects. It certainly also involves the many technical aspects of that process but the focus seems to be more "What does the picture say...", not just "How pretty is the picture?". Someone said before somewhere that they could sell footage of the Titanic sinking, shot with a cellphone because the footage is immediately captivating.

Vegas does (to my humble eyes) a pretty good job of compressing things in quicktime format. I find that quicktime seems to dull the video image a little, pulling the colour out of it just a tad. My preffered filetype would be WMV, but I have no direct preference.

So the bottom line is...sure there are better possibilities but to work with what we have brings out the tech/artist in everyone involved and offers a level playing field.

Just my 2 cents.
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Old April 12th, 2007, 08:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James Hooey View Post
Maybe I see this a little differently than most but I am fine with the file upload limit and resulting video. I think this contest is about motivating people to create unique video projects. It certainly also involves the many technical aspects of that process but the focus seems to be more "What does the picture say...", not just "How pretty is the picture?". Someone said before somewhere that they could sell footage of the Titanic sinking, shot with a cellphone because the footage is immediately captivating.

Vegas does (to my humble eyes) a pretty good job of compressing things in quicktime format. I find that quicktime seems to dull the video image a little, pulling the colour out of it just a tad. My preffered filetype would be WMV, but I have no direct preference.

So the bottom line is...sure there are better possibilities but to work with what we have brings out the tech/artist in everyone involved and offers a level playing field.

Just my 2 cents.
James,

Try d/loading the trial version of Sorenson Squeeze and you'll see the difference. Not that I care about the competitive aspect of the Challenge, but if you have Squeeze, your resulting compressed video is much, much better. That's why it's worth $499.

Take a close look at Per Johan's work, the detail in the compressed files is amazing. Personally, I now encode for the web with FlixPro8 VP6. It is marginally better than the standard Sorenson Squeeze, but only encodes in flash. And it is infinitely better than than Vegas-QTPro-Sorenson.
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Old April 13th, 2007, 10:04 AM   #9
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Hi all:

I used Media Cleaner to compress my file, and to get it to the 50 mb requirement it took so much out of it! I respect James' comment about it is content over quality that matters but I have to admit, I was so disappointed throwing something so degraded out there for the challenge.

I have not heard of Sorenson 3 Squeeze and am thrilled to get the good report about it. Ken, with all the money I am saving not investing in a HD(V) camera just yet, perhaps this is a better investment! (wink, wink).

Mat has brought up the subject of cost of the expanded bandwidth to handle larger files, would it be a bad idea if all contestants chip in some for that additional cost? Or does this open a can of worms.

Looking forward to UWOL 3, 50 mb or not.

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Old April 13th, 2007, 10:53 AM   #10
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Cat, the product is Sorenson Squeeze Suite 4.5. You should take it for a test-drive first. Your video will be heavily watermarked with their logo during the trial period, but you can see how well and easily it works. It will compress .avi to .wmv and .mov, which is great for the UWOL Challenge. I just encode to Flash only on my website. Flash is the most widely universal player at around 98% of machines. Then it's .wmv and .mov.

It's a super product, and the next time I have a spare $499... Here's the link

http://www.sorensonmedia.com/pages/?pageID=2
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Old April 13th, 2007, 03:40 PM   #11
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Downloaded the trial....gonna do some tests over the next couple days.
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Old May 4th, 2007, 12:04 AM   #12
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Hey guys

I'm using Sony Vegas 7.0e (new update) and having no problem with using it to get great images at the required size. Remember not to view your video at a larger size than you encoded it at or it will start to fall apart. I really hope the judges keep this in mind (I'm sure they know.)

I have great color, no artifacts and small text is crisp and clear.

This being the case I would hate for others to spend $499 on Sorenson Squeeze when Vegas seems more than adequate and will take care of editing as well.

Here are my settings in Vegas:
Save as type: Quicktime 7 (*.mov)
Click the Custom Button and under the Video tab:
Frame Size: Custom (428x240)
Video Format: Sorenson Video 3
Compressed depth: 24bpp color
Quality: 100%
Data rate: Basic
Target rate, KBps: 325

The results of this is 18MB per minute of video which brings you in under 60MB for a 3 minute clip. You could raise the Target rate setting until you max at 60MB for your total clip.

Hope it helps. Looks flawless for what I see here.

-Jonathan
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Old May 4th, 2007, 12:12 AM   #13
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Thanks Johathan,
This is very helpful information.

Do any others have any tricks to share with their NLE's?

Meryem just send an email stating that the file size limit for UWOL-3 will be 60MB. I think this is good news to us in the PC-camp, which have struggled previously with the 50MB limit :-)
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Last edited by Per Johan Naesje; May 4th, 2007 at 01:30 AM.
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Old May 4th, 2007, 12:43 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonathan Gentry View Post
Hey guys

I'm using Sony Vegas 7.0e (new update) and having no problem with using it to get great images at the required size. Remember not to view your video at a larger size than you encoded it at or it will start to fall apart. I really hope the judges keep this in mind (I'm sure they know.)

I have great color, no artifacts and small text is crisp and clear.

This being the case I would hate for others to spend $499 on Sorenson Squeeze when Vegas seems more than adequate and will take care of editing as well.

Here are my settings in Vegas:
Save as type: Quicktime 7 (*.mov)
Click the Custom Button and under the Video tab:
Frame Size: Custom (428x240)
Video Format: Sorenson Video 3
Compressed depth: 24bpp color
Quality: 100%
Data rate: Basic
Target rate, KBps: 325

The results of this is 18MB per minute of video which brings you in under 60MB for a 3 minute clip. You could raise the Target rate setting until you max at 60MB for your total clip.

Hope it helps. Looks flawless for what I see here.

-Jonathan
Jonathan,

I'm just running a test render using your settings (I'm using Vegas 6d though - so QT6 instead of 7).

If this works then 'you are the man'. Previously I was rendering an AVI from Vegas - then converting to Sorenson 3 using QTpro. This would not only save a step, but also render a better product.

Result.

Shoot! While my 2:35 file looks real good. It comes in at 74.5 MB. Must be the diff between QT6 and 7... But thanks for posting. I'll try tweaking the settings.
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Old May 4th, 2007, 01:15 AM   #15
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Just bring it down to 280-300 for the bitrate. Tweak to the proper level. More importantly what do you think of the image quality compared to Sorenson Squeeze or the workflow you were using before? I would think you may get a better result with version 7 but do let us know if the image is acceptable with version 6...

Per Johan - With the above setting except a lower bitrate (200-250) I was able to output from Vegas at even 40MB for 3 minutes with very acceptable results. With this workflow I think everyone should be happy regardless of the MB limitation.

-Jonathan

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Diewert View Post
Jonathan,

I'm just running a test render using your settings (I'm using Vegas 6d though - so QT6 instead of 7).

If this works then 'you are the man'. Previously I was rendering an AVI from Vegas - then converting to Sorenson 3 using QTpro. This would not only save a step, but also render a better product.

Result.

Shoot! While my 2:35 file looks real good. It comes in at 74.5 MB. Must be the diff between QT6 and 7... But thanks for posting. I'll try tweaking the settings.
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