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Thread: Help With Compressing Video Files

  1. #1

    Default Help With Compressing Video Files

    If this is the wrong forum, lock it up or move it.

    Back story: Web based business.
    Mass amounts of media (specifically video files).
    Videos are ~20 mins in length.
    Yes, I'm aware we'll probably need unmetered bandwidth.
    Yes, I'm aware of the amount of storage we need.
    I've got the above two covered.

    I have limited video editing experience but I am completely green when it comes to compressing and uploading videos and the best methods for doing so. I've done a bit of research but, to be honest, I'm not exactly sure what I should be looking for. Anybody with any sort of experience in this area? Basically what I'm looking for is reliable, relatively cost effective editing software (if not, I'm not too concerned with price) and what that's going to give me as far as compression effectiveness goes. For instance, if I have a file that's 2GB, roughly what size will that file end up being? Sorry if any of these questions are trivial or kind of dumb; I'm fairly new to this haha.

    Again, sorry if this post isn't suitable for this forum.
    Last edited by ffuture; 02-11-2011 at 12:15 PM.

  2. #2


    I recommend more consideration of your delivery system. Whilst your server may have sufficient bandwidth; your clients may not. Those with larger bandwidth may expect higher quality video; those with poor connections may find the download too slow. In theory, one can compress a 2Gb file into almost any size. Whilst the file will be smaller; the quality will degrade. Another factor is the size of the video image. A video with less width and height will also create a smaller file.
    IMHO, a better option would be to use dedicated http video streaming software on the server (available on most platforms).
    I know this does not answer your question, but I think you should decide your preferred delivery mechanism; as that may affect the choice of the most suitable compression systems.

    Sadly, 20 min of video is likely to be quite alot to download as a single file, even with the best compression system.

    Do you already have any video editing or video conversion software?

  3. #3


    Other than the stock software that comes installed on Windows, I don't have anything suitable for editing or doing any sort of video work. When you say HTTP streaming, you're talking about the end user actually downloading the file before they can view it, as opposed to true streaming, correct? I think that true streaming is the ideal way for me to go about this, but, like I said, I'm really inexperienced when it comes to broadcasting media across any web based platform. This project involves the possibility of live streaming down the road, as well, so I think true streaming is the only way I'm going to be able to go about this. As far as the video size goes, ideally I'd like the videos to be able to viewed in a full screen setting with as little quality lost through compression as possible. The more I think about this the more I realize how much space we're actually going to need haha.

  4. #4


    I am sorry if I mislead you. Ignore my use of the word "http". You are correct, your preference for 'true' is best.
    You may find it cheaper/easier/better to put the clips on a site, such as Vimeo; and simply embed links in your pages to the videos. I believe Vimeo offer good playback quality (and for a small cost, they seem to look better than clips on YouTube).
    Live streaming is slightly different. And, the licencing costs for running your own Media Server (like the ones sold by Microsoft, or Real Networks[I think], or whatever runs the YouTube system).

    The simplest part is the question you originally asked - how to compress a video file. As you can see, one of the first requirements is to get an idea of the what video formats (preferred bandwidth, image size and frames per second) you want to convert the file into. The notion of "full screen" does not mean alot; afterall, a 320*240 video can be played at full screen; but it will look dreadful.

  5. #5


    Although YouTube may not quite have the edge on quality over Vimeo I think because it offers a greater choice for the end user it does take the edge If you render a file in full HDV 1080p YouTube will then render that video into smaller compressions such as 720p, 480p, 360p, even as low as 240p. This means the end user can choose the what ever suites their circumstances.

    So embedding YouTube video is the easiest and most practical method IMO.

  6. #6


    How are those sites with ownership rights, watermarking, etc.? I think that hosting on a site like Vimeo or YouTube would definitely be a viable short term option and something I will undoubtedly keep in mind. Thanks so much, guys.

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