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What Happens in Vegas...
...stays in Vegas! This PC-based editing app is a safe bet with these tips.


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Old February 1st, 2008, 02:34 PM   #1
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Render to H.264 with Vegas 7?

How to render a final product from timeline to H.264?
Vegas 7.0e only offers H.263.

Thank you

Ron
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Old February 1st, 2008, 02:56 PM   #2
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Use the MainConcept AVC/AAC or Sony AVC encoder. This thread on Vegas and Vimeo might be useful.
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Old February 2nd, 2008, 08:14 AM   #3
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Thank you Michael.
So MainConcept AVC/AAC or Sony AVC encoder represent H.264 for Vegas, right?
Best regards

Ron
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Old February 2nd, 2008, 10:56 AM   #4
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That is correct, in Vegas 7/8, H.264 is created using the MainConcept AVC/AAC or Sony AVC encoder.

Here are some settings to create a 720p file (recommended for Vimeo). You have to set a higher bit rate to "see" better results, preferably with two-pass VBR. The main benefit of H.264 is a smaller file size at the same bit rate - with theoretically similar video quality.

1. H.264 - use the MainConcept AVC/AAC or Sony AVC encoder in Vegas 7/8 (.wmv if using an older version of Vegas)
2. 1280x720 - set as a Custom Frame Size (this is 720, 16x9)
3. 3000-5000 kbits/sec - bit rate in Vegas will show as 3,000,000-5,000,000 bps
4. AAC 128kpbs stereo - 48,000 Hz, 128,000 bps

Here are some 720p videos I put up on Vimeo. Shot with the XH A1 at 1080i, 24p & 30p.

Eugenia Loli-Queru also created a very nice write up on using Vegas to create an H.264 file for Vimeo.

Hope that helps.
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Old February 2nd, 2008, 07:05 PM   #5
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Thank you again Michael. Your tips were very apreciated.
Ron
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Old February 15th, 2008, 03:12 PM   #6
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Has anyone else had the problem of files encoded to H.264 mp4 crashing Windows Media Player 10 or Windows Media Player 11?

I am able to open the mp4 file in WMP just fine, and can seek around in it. It plays flawlessly and the audio stays in sync.

But when I hit the stop button or try to close the media player, the media player hangs. Only way to get rid of it is by ending the process in the Task Manager.

This happened to me in WMP 10. I figured it might be fixed in 11. Tried to install 11, couldn't, because I only have Windows Media Center Edition 2002. Found workaround instructions here and got WMP 11 installed successfully. Same crash behavior.
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Old February 15th, 2008, 04:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Wisniewski View Post
The main benefit of H.264 is a smaller file size at the same bit rate - with theoretically similar video quality.
The final file size is determined ONLY by bit rate, therefore, you can't have a smaller file size at the same bitrate. The benefit of h.264 is maintaining the same picture quality at a lower bit rate as compared to MPEG2 encoded at a higher bit rate. An h.264 encode at 5 megabits/sec, for example, should look better that an MPEG2 encode at the same 5 Mbits/sec. The file size would be the same. An h.264 encode at, let's say, 4 Mbits/sec could look as good as the 5 Mbit MPEG2, but would be smaller in size.

The downside to h.264 is that it requires a lot more horsepower to decode and isn't as universally supported as MPEG2 or even WMV.

John
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Old February 25th, 2008, 02:48 AM   #8
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Removing WMP11

A brief follow-up to the above. I learned quickly that WMP11 has had some of the features found in WMP10 stripped, like the Ctrl+I still image capture functionality which I relied upon daily. I wasn't able to rollback WMP11 using the Add/Remove Programs pane (it said it was rolled back, but actually wasn't); finally I accomplished the removal by running the following on the command line:

C:\\WINDOWS\\$NtUninstallwmp11$\\spuninst\\spuninst.exe

I didn't also run the following, but I've heard it's recommended:

C:\\WINDOWS\\$NtUninstallWMFDist11$\\spuninst\\spuninst.exe

I really like H.264-encoded files, I just wish WMP didn't crash after finishing playing them. Nobody else has encountered this issue?
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Old March 31st, 2008, 11:15 PM   #9
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Audio delay

I've got some SD footage I captured into Vegas and wanted to post on Vimeo. I set my render settings to Main Concept AVC at 2mbps (30fps, 680x480, progressive) with AAC audio settings at 128kbps, 48,000. It renders fine, but then when I open the rendered file in Quicktime the audio lags behind by a half second or so.

I tried the Sony mp4 codec with the same settings and had the same result. Then I rendered to Windows Media Video using the 3mbps template with 128kbps, 48,000 audio and the rendered file works perfectly.

So what am I doing wrong with the mp4 renders? (I know this is going to be a slap-your-head-"Duh" issue so please forgive my ignorance in advance)

Thanks,

-Brendan
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Old April 1st, 2008, 12:05 AM   #10
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Brendan,

I don't know the answer to your question, but why are you encoding SD video at 680x480 instead of 720x480 which is the native size?

Something to consider...It may be that your render is fine, but your machine is struggling to play back the file and keep things in sync. Tell you what, do another render in Mainconcept. But on the video settings window it gives you the option of CABAC (the default) or CAVLC. Choose CAVLC and see if your machine plays it back ok. CAVLC is a little easier to decode and is often the best choice if your mpeg4 is going to be played by machines with less horsepower.

Good luck.
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Old April 1st, 2008, 12:15 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perrone Ford View Post
Something to consider...It may be that your render is fine, but your machine is struggling to play back the file and keep things in sync.
I guess I shouldn't assume Quicktime will always playback correctly. I took one of my rendered files and dropped it back into the Vegas timeline and it plays back perfectly. It appears Quicktime is the one having the problem, not the file itself. It's still a bit odd though as my machine shouldn't be slowing it down any - it's an Intel Core 2 Quad running Vista with 3.5 gigs of RAM.

I guess it's time to install VLC Media Player!

Thanks for the help!

-Brendan
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Old June 15th, 2008, 07:02 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Knecht Schmidt View Post
Has anyone else had the problem of files encoded to H.264 mp4 crashing Windows Media Player 10 or Windows Media Player 11?

I am able to open the mp4 file in WMP just fine, and can seek around in it. It plays flawlessly and the audio stays in sync.

But when I hit the stop button or try to close the media player, the media player hangs. Only way to get rid of it is by ending the process in the Task Manager.

This happened to me in WMP 10. I figured it might be fixed in 11. Tried to install 11, couldn't, because I only have Windows Media Center Edition 2002. Found workaround instructions here and got WMP 11 installed successfully. Same crash behavior.
To follow up, installing K-Lite codec pack corrected this problem. (After installing K-Lite, I also had to disable "MPEG" and "MPEG as AVI" playback in ffdshow to restore proper playback of DVR_MS files.)
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Old June 16th, 2008, 04:09 AM   #13
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Michael,

Thanks for this. I am one of the newbies getting by head around this alphabet soup of formats.

The quality of the clip I saw on Vimeo was astonishing..

Ben
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Old June 16th, 2008, 05:25 AM   #14
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Free H264 codec

If You want to encode to H264 You can also install the free vfw x264 Codec. Works in Vegas to, but has in Vegas some format limitations (no full HD). To work around these I use the Debugmode Frameserver (also freeware) to VDub. In VDub the limitations do not apply and You can render almost every progressive format and framerate (havenīt tried interlaced so far).

Greeting Richard
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Old June 16th, 2008, 08:04 AM   #15
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One of my clients wants me to send them news vision encoded to H264 at 1mbps.
The only trouble is the result is woeful, with any moving object looking like its been shot with a hand cranked cine..

I know this is the equivalent of encoding to MPEG2 at 2mbps... but seriously any advice welcome!

Ben
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