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Lets Have a Nice Talk: Best Compression Codecs That work for you.

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Nick Pitcavage
Lets Have a Nice Talk: Best Compression Codecs That work for you.
on Oct 15, 2008 at 10:33:15 pm

Hey all.
I am on a mission to find the best codec for compressing our HD video projects and time lines.

I regularly use Maya, After Effects, and FCP The best codes I've found so far is HDV1080i60. It has a relatively small file size and retains quality very well.

I wish file size was not an issue, because I would use 'animation' or 'none' every time. Unfortunately, our PVP system will jump a little if our file size is too large.

The ONLY complaint I have about HDV1080i60 is that any gradient areas have noticeable stair-stepping.

Does anyone have a suggestion or technique to get nice smooth gradients with manageable file size?

EX: I have a 30 sec motion graphic that was compressed using HDV. The file is 110Mb. Pretty good. The text looks great and the playback is smooth. There is a black radial gradient in the BG and it has noticeable stair-stepping.


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Daniel Low
Re: Lets Have a Nice Talk: Best Compression Codecs That work for you.
on Oct 15, 2008 at 11:06:16 pm

Ok, to kick things off, have a look at the link at the bottom of a post I replied to earlier today on the same subject.

http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/20/860641




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Please post back saying what solved your problem. It could help others, and saying 'thanks' is free!


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Nick Pitcavage
Re: Lets Have a Nice Talk: Best Compression Codecs That work for you.
on Oct 15, 2008 at 11:29:51 pm

thanks for the link (to OneRiver). There is a wealth of knowledge there, and I will try to absorb it all. That being said, it's a lot of data.

I suppose I could grab the 'Blue Hell' gradient and go through all the codecs on the list. But I was hoping we could get a little something more...

What I am hoping to do is compile info here on the strengths and weaknesses of each codec.

So we can say that Lossless is the best solution when file size is not an issue.

I can tell you that HDV seems to be great for text and motion.

What about gradients?



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Daniel Low
Re: Lets Have a Nice Talk: Best Compression Codecs That work for you.
on Oct 16, 2008 at 12:13:08 am

in the whole scheme of things, HDV is a crap format, it's not a codec. HDV uses MPEG-2, which in itself is also a fomat that does not dictate a codec. Both HDV and MPEG-2 are 8 bit with MPEG-2 using the best of 4:2:2 so gradients from graphics or 3d renders will always look less than good.

Lossless? Uncompressed? Depends what background you are from and what you want to deliver to, and another reason why I pointed you towards that previous thread.

On order to determine what codec or codecs are best for you, one would need to understand your worflow and what limitations you have in terms of technology, time, money and knowledge, but ultimatley it's what you want to deliver your content to. In other words, there's no point in having an uncompressed 4:4:4 16bit workflow if you are delivering to Flash!

__________________________________________________________________
Please post back saying what solved your problem. It could help others, and saying 'thanks' is free!


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