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T02

Compression talk

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Hey fellas.

 

In a recent thread, something Sao Bento said reminded me of the hard times i'm having when, after finishing a project, i'm making quicktimes to throw online, or to preview to clients, or whatever.

 

I mean, what good is a huge deal of work and lots of time spent on polishing the looks and finishing the details, when in the end (1) your piece is waay to big for anyone to be pacient enought to watch it, or (2) you lose all the details anyway, because you gotta deliver a decent chunk online, ubercompressed and shitty looking (and sounding!).

 

So, i've seen lots of reels looking really really nice and not weighing half the internet.

How do you guys do it? I mean, i have qt pro, i'm on the h264 bandwagon for some time now, but i KNOW more can be done. And better.

 

Please, share your knowledge here.

 

(oh and, Sao, i was mentioning your name, i really hope you can drop couple lines here)

 

 

Thankyou!

Edited by T02

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Guest J.J. Johnstone

h.264 is a great multiple pass compressor, when used with quicktime pro you can do some really great compressions. You just need to take the time to experiment for the best settings for your project. Usually with any multiple pass compressor it kinda goes...

650 to 800 bit rate for 320x480

1200 to 1500 bit rate for 480 x 360 or similar

this is really loose and you need to try out different things to get the best. Of course make your bit rate higher for better compressions and vice versa.

Also music compression is important, 128 for stereo and 96 mono or close to that. You can go down to 64 for mono before you really start screwing up the sound. Oh and always make sure you check the fast sart/compressed header, nobody wants to wait for the entire download before it pops up.

 

If you don't want to spend time to experiment or want more control than quicktime pro allows, I suggest buying Cleaner. I use it alot, and it works great. With the combination of Cleaner and Sorenson's multi-pass codec you can make the best compressions that are pre quicktime 7 compatible. I think it is the best answer to your problem, but it costs alot more than just quicktime pro, so that of course makes it less desirable.

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If you tweak the data rate rather than going with the "Quality Slider" you can usually fine tune the size/quality, but it's a game of trial and error. You can start with something like 3000 and go down from there until you're no longer happy with the quality then go back up a little.

 

Other things I usually do are automatic keyframes, multi-pass encoding, frame re-ordering, and optimized for download. For the audio I usually go with AAC compression. You can go down to 64 or even 32 without much quality loss.

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Dudes, this is amazing, thanks :D

 

I mean.. was i living in a cave, or what?!

 

I just turned a 30 seconds 90 meg PAL movie into a 12 meg quicktime, same resolution, with no perceivable loss in quality :o

 

Thankyou!

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Dudes, this is amazing, thanks :D

 

I mean.. was i living in a cave, or what?!

 

I just turned a 30 seconds 90 meg PAL movie into a 12 meg quicktime, same resolution, with no perceivable loss in quality :o

 

Thankyou!

 

 

Yeah it's good to save a library of presets for different conditions as well. I'd love to always show pristine H.264 full res quicktimes, but every so often clients can't play them, or they're on a slow connection, or their PC doesn't have Quicktime, or whatever. What I've ended up with is about 3 different settings/ sizes in 4 or five different formats, so if a client can't see what I post, I can quickly fire off a few different versions for them. You can easily waste a whole day experimenting with settings just trying to get something your client can see otherwise.

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You can easily waste a whole day experimenting with settings just trying to get something your client can see otherwise.

 

So totally true.

Anyway, thanks for the tips fellas!

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Guest Sao_bento

They beat me to it. I like the idea of compressor working, but personally, I've always got the best results from exporting from the Quicktime Pro Player. As general info, trying to render anything suitable for the web directly from AE is an exercise in futility, so don't waste your time.

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Guest spence

I've allways gotten the best results from sorenson squeeze. For some reason it squeezes out signifigantly smaller file sizes for the same quality as quicktime does.

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I've allways gotten the best results from sorenson squeeze. For some reason it squeezes out signifigantly smaller file sizes for the same quality as quicktime does.

 

Well, that's a 2 pass/ variable bit rate vs. a 1 pass VBR or consistent bit rate thing. 2 pass VBR will first analyze the file and then compress it in such a way that you get the quality where you need it and save bandwidth where it will least be noticed. QT Pro doesn't have any 2 pass VBR options like Squeeze, Cleaner, or Compressor, so you get larger and crappier looking files using the same codec.

 

Sao brings up one of my all time pet peeves about After Effects; the fact that you can't output a decent file for online viewing right out of the render queue is completely annoying. 100% of my work gets approved online, so that's a ton of wasted time recompressing AE renders.

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Guest fletty

i have to recommend episode pro. it works better than cleaner, and compressor. not sure how it compares to sorenson tho...

 

we use it at work, and its really fast, universal binary (for intel macs), and does a really good job...

 

puff_pickhit.gif

 

heres the lowdown...

 

"Episode™ Pro is the powerful client tool in Telestream’s new Episode™ Workgroup solution. This media encoding application for the Mac lets you configure the encoding settings, then export them to the server to do the heavy work. Episode Pro offers the highest quality and fastest encoding for content repurposing and distribution to new media channels: Web, DVD, and portable devices including Apple video-enabled iPod®, Sony Playstation Portable®, and mobile phones.

 

Ultimate quality and format support

Episode Pro is a future-proof software solution that offers extensive support for current and emerging video and audio file formats, up to HD resolutions in and out. Optimized codecs, filters and the most extensive fine-tuning compression capabilities on the market allow you to generate the highest-quality media files. High-end professional formats include MXF, H.264 High Profile, DVCPRO HD, 3GPP, mobile multi-bitrate, and more. Our optimized Flash 8 encoder option provides superior Flash 8 quality.

 

Episode Pro supports high-end professional formats, such as MXF, GXF, H.264 High Profile, DVCPRO HD, MPEG-2/-4 Transport Streams, mobile multi-bitrate, and more..

 

More choices. Hands on control

Episode Pro’s intuitive user interface gives you complete hands-on control of the encoding settings. Choose from a wide range of advanced encoding settings, designed by experts. Use dozens of preset templates or create your own custom settings. An extensive range of video and audio filters, with powerful preview windows, let you analyze your setting results before the encoding begins

 

Audio filters include balance, channel mixing, fade in/out, five-band equalizer, high pass/low pass filters and audio normalization

 

Video filters include timecode burn in, black and white restoration, contrast, fade, gamma correction, HSV levels, RGB filter, sharpen, smoothing, visible watermark, resize, de-interlace, fade in/out, inverse telecine, and noise reduction

 

Encoding. Performance. Ease of Use

Episode Pro is a universal application optimized for Mac OS X Intel and PowerPC Macs. Features include multi-pass encoding for H.264, WMV, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, H.263. Auto-batch encoding is enabled by simply dragging and dropping one or more media files to the Batch Job window.

 

Scalability

Episode Pro is the scalable solution that grows with your media workflow needs. In addition to advanced professional formats, increased capacity with unlimited batch processing, Episode Pro provides a scalable path to Telestream’s Episode™ Workgroup, a server-based solution that enables faster, high-volume job processing."

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Well, that's a 2 pass/ variable bit rate vs. a 1 pass VBR or consistent bit rate thing. 2 pass VBR will first analyze the file and then compress it in such a way that you get the quality where you need it and save bandwidth where it will least be noticed. QT Pro doesn't have any 2 pass VBR options like Squeeze, Cleaner, or Compressor, so you get larger and crappier looking files using the same codec.

Word to the Frizzle for compression dropscience!

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Guest Sao_bento

Well, that's a 2 pass/ variable bit rate vs. a 1 pass VBR or consistent bit rate thing. 2 pass VBR will first analyze the file and then compress it in such a way that you get the quality where you need it and save bandwidth where it will least be noticed. QT Pro doesn't have any 2 pass VBR options like Squeeze, Cleaner, or Compressor, so you get larger and crappier looking files using the same codec.

 

Sao brings up one of my all time pet peeves about After Effects; the fact that you can't output a decent file for online viewing right out of the render queue is completely annoying. 100% of my work gets approved online, so that's a ton of wasted time recompressing AE renders.

Hmmm, My QT Pro has a multi-pass VBR option for H.264 -are you talking specifically about Sorenson?

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They beat me to it. I like the idea of compressor working, but personally, I've always got the best results from exporting from the Quicktime Pro Player. As general info, trying to render anything suitable for the web directly from AE is an exercise in futility, so don't waste your time.

Seriously... why the hell can QT Pro get things smaller and tighter that Compressor or AE? It doesn't make sense, but that's what I've used for a while now. There may be a way to do it but experience has shown QT Pro the winner in my circle.

 

-m

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QT Pro doesn't have any 2 pass VBR options like Squeeze, Cleaner, or Compressor, so you get larger and crappier looking files using the same codec.

 

you can do a 2-pass render to h.264 out of QT Pro.

 

beat me to it.

Edited by fishface

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i like squeeze as well. i set up a watch folder for it so it will automagically compress anything in the folder... compressor/cleaner may offer a similar feature in newer versions, i don't know. but i still use sorenson 3 (2-pass VBR, of course) for web stuff, just for compatibility reasons.

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Guest Sao_bento

For Mac OSX, there is this setup for Automator

http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/auto...ndworkflow.html

This simply batch compresses movies using the "most recent settings" in QT Pro.

 

I guess there's some reason you can't access the export settings in QT Pro Player via Automator, which is a huge fuck-up IMHO.

 

edit: I see there is an action in Automator that will add hinting to un-hinted movies. A lot of people need this.

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