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H.264 compression for Flash

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Jeff Breuer
H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 23, 2009 at 9:23:54 pm

I've read through this forum looking for an answer to no luck. Perhaps I am too green in this area to understand something simple though.

My task is to make these half hour long lecture videos for a web page. The client chose the JW Player and Flash is foreign to me. I know v.9 now allows for H.264 codec and I have read that the .mov wrapper works fine. However, even when I codec in H.264 and change the extension to .flv, my client's web guy tells me it won't play in the JW Player. And he is a stickler for quality so I would like to stay in the H.264, instead of going through flv if possible. Having said that, I want to preview my movies before sending them to the web guy, but I cannot open a .mov in SWF/FLV Player JW has for download as a "Desktop Player."

Many thanks, Jeff

Mac OX 10.5.8
Duo 2.66
4G Mem
Exporting to H.264 codec with .mp4 extension from Episode, though I have also tried Compressor
Originally edited FCP7, ProRes



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Craig Seeman
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 23, 2009 at 10:13:38 pm

H.264 mov and H.264 mp4 works fine in Flash. In fact I use H.264 mov in JW Longtail player so I know firsthand it works fine. You should NOT change the extension.

If your client's web guy says it doesn't play in JW player then I'd suggest your client fire him because he knows less than nothing. Sorry to be so blunt but I am close to flash/web coding idiot and even I was able to use both mp4 and mov in JW Player. They have a wizard on their site for flash handicapped people like myself.

You can not open a mov or mp4 in a Flash Player. It has to be wrapped in the SWF player with javascript controls. The mov or mp4 should look exactly as you see it in Quicktime though. Of course you could use the wizard on the Longtail site and do it yourself and play it in a browser locally.

http://www.longtailvideo.com/support/jw-player-setup-wizard





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Jeff Breuer
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 23, 2009 at 10:55:27 pm

Craig- Thank you for the advice. No apology need, your blunt assertion is both correct and appreciated. Following your advice I downloaded the JW myself and attempted to link the .mov to the player, but apparently I am dumber than I thought.

In the wizard, I placed the path to my file under File Properties > File but it didn't work. I tried placing it in my own html document to test and it failed there too. I used the following code from the wizard:







Where Phoenix.mov is my file and all associated files for the jw player are under same directory as the html doc and my movie. Any ideas? Thanks!


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Craig Seeman
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 23, 2009 at 10:59:24 pm

Did you place the javascript there too? You need everything in one place. When you download the player, play their sample if you can.



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Craig Seeman
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 23, 2009 at 11:05:27 pm

Here's code I used for a webpage. You have to make sure you have this installed in the same location as well
swfobject.js
That's the javascript for the player.


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Jeff Breuer
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 23, 2009 at 11:29:37 pm

I copied your code and pasted it into my html document and changed the names for video and the picture and still nothing. Not the picture, not the player, nothing. You said to be sure I "installed" this with swfobject.js. I am not a program guy in the least. I put your code in an html document that sits in the same folder as all the other stuff. Is there something I am missing there? I know nothing about java and running on old html I learned in high school in the 90s.

Here's my code now:

<html>
<body>

<script type="text/javascript">
var so = new SWFObject('player.swf','mpl','400','284','9');
so.addParam('allowscriptaccess','always');
so.addParam('allowfullscreen','true');
so.addParam('flashvars','&file=Phoenix.mov&image=preview.jpg&frontcolor=ffffff&lightcolor=cc9900&skin=bekle.swf');
so.write('player');
</script></td>

</body>
</html>



Thanks again for your help!


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Jeff Breuer
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 23, 2009 at 11:14:13 pm

Yea, I posted everything JW gave me in their zipped folder under the same directory so I could be sure not to make that mistake. I tried using the "video.flv" that came in that zipped file and I'm still getting nothing. Not even a player is showing up in my window.

<html>
<body>

<script type='text/javascript' src='swfobject.js'></script>

<div id='mediaspace'>This text will be replaced</div>

<script type='text/javascript'>
var so = new SWFObject('player.swf','mpl','470','320','9');
so.addParam('allowfullscreen','true');
so.addParam('allowscriptaccess','always');
so.addParam('wmode','opaque');
so.addVariable('file','video.flv');
so.write('mediaspace');
</script>
</body>
</html>



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Chris Blair
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 25, 2009 at 1:45:51 am

I use JW Player quite a bit too. You need a specific version of the swfobject.js with the latest version of the JW Player. If you have the wrong version of swfobject.js, it won't work. I think it's version 2.1 but not sure. I initially put the wrong version on our web server and it took me half a day to figure out my mistake.

Using JW Player also only works from a web server. So you can't load it on your office PC, code the links to your hard drive and have it play (unless your office PC is setup with web serving software of course, which it likely isn't).

If you use the wizard on the JW Player site, it actually references swfobject.js from Longtail's site, so as long as you have the correct reference link to your video file, (residing on a web server ...very important), it should play right there on the JW Player wizard page. If it doesn't, you did something wrong. It took me half a dozen tries to get it all right the first time I tried.

However, if all you want to do is play the mp4/flv files, download VLC media player for free. It will play just about anything. You can also download a free plugin for Windows Media Player that will play H264/mp4 files and any quicktime based codec (as long as Quicktime is installed on the computer). Get it here:

http://www.medialooks.com/products/plugins/quicktime_plugin.html

They also have a Flash plug-in for Windows Media player I believe.

Chris Blair
Magnetic Image, Inc.
Evansville, IN
http://www.videomi.com


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Jeff Breuer
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 25, 2009 at 3:25:40 pm

Ah-ha! I see. That explains it. I was trying to run it off my desktop, but if I CAN'T do that, well then there you go. I will have to put the mov file online before I can test it's compatibility with the jw player. Got it, thanks!


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Craig Seeman
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 25, 2009 at 3:34:46 pm

You can build a web page on your desktop as a test. That's how I mucked around to made sure I understood what was happening before I uploaded to a site.

I used SoftPress FreeWay Pro and created a 1 page site on my desktop for flash testing. I can then test with various browsers on my computer.



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Chris Blair
Re: H.264 compression for Flash
on Sep 25, 2009 at 4:05:42 pm

That sounds cool. Does it emulate a web server? We build websites and do a lot of testing of pages and sites across browsers from local computers but we always have to test any Flash or javascript stuff from an actual web server to get it to work.

From our use of JW Player, it will load the player from a local computer, but won't won't play the video unless it's calling the video from an actual web server link.



Chris Blair
Magnetic Image, Inc.
Evansville, IN
http://www.videomi.com


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