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30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive

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Jeffrey Gould
30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive
on Feb 17, 2010 at 9:02:29 pm

Hi, I have a client who wants a 30 minute training video to playback from their website in Flash Video format. I told him that the video should really be on a dedicated streaming server and not a web server.

If they decide to go with their own webserver, what will playback be like? I shoot in HDV 1440*1080 and was hoping the video could be in HD as well. I have only used YouTube or Playstream for my videos, so any direction or help would be appreciated.

Jeffrey S. Gould
Action Media Productions


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Daniel Low
Re: 30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive
on Feb 17, 2010 at 9:53:30 pm

You told them wrong. Forget streaming. This solution is all about progressive (HTTP) download. There's no way you can stream HD over 90% of the worlds connections.

(Although HTML5 video would be even better)

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Sent from my iPad Nano.


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Jeffrey Gould
Re: 30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive
on Feb 17, 2010 at 10:09:32 pm

Thanks...so you could put a 30 minute video in HQ/HD on a regular webserver and it will play back OK? Then why are their companies like Wistia, Playstream and iPlayerHD? I thought you needed them to guarantee smooth playback...guess not. would something like this work:
http://www.longtailvideo.com/players/jw-flv-player/

Jeffrey S. Gould
Action Media Productions


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Daniel Low
Re: 30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive
on Feb 17, 2010 at 10:25:44 pm

Have you seen Youtube or Vimeo HD playback, perfectly smooth whatever your connection speed as long as you have a powerful enough computer.

Bottom line:

HTTP/web serving video./ You, the content owner controls the quality of the video. Connection speed only effects how long it takes to play back the clip without buffering. Costs are low

RTSP/RTMP/True streaming: You the content owner has little control over quality, the clients connection speed determines that, the faster the connection, the better the quality. Those with a connection speed below a certain amount may not see anything at all. Costs are high.


(PS the future is HTML5, flash is on the way out so don't invest in it.)


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Jeffrey Gould
Re: 30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive
on Feb 17, 2010 at 10:38:07 pm

Thank you for that Daniel, that was an excellent explanation. I use Sorenson Squeeze 5 and not happy with the players they include, could I use the JW Pro player for the clients website? Also I'm assuming I need to go FLV due to the length or I guess H.264? If there is a way, would I be better off breaking the video into logical segments? Thanks again.

Jeffrey S. Gould
Action Media Productions


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Daniel Low
Re: 30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive
on Feb 17, 2010 at 11:16:47 pm

Jw Player is good.

Length has nothing to do with choice of codec. I'd go for H.264 whatever.

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Jeffrey Gould
Re: 30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive
on Feb 17, 2010 at 11:21:30 pm

Thanks, I guess I meant FLV as opposed to SWF...but then realized that H.264 is the better choice. Next question is how to find the right bitrate, but I've taken up enough of your time today and I'll do a search in this forum later on.

Jeffrey S. Gould
Action Media Productions


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Chris Blair
Re: 30 minute video/Streaming Vs. Progressive
on Feb 20, 2010 at 5:26:23 pm

If your client wants the video to play reliably on a high number of computers, I'd forget about doing it in HD. We do a lot of compression for corporate clients, especially training videos, and we're lucky to get videos to play smoothly at 512x288. Corporate people in the U.S. tend to be a step behind in terms of computer speed and power, as well as their networks. If it still works, they're reluctant to upgrade.

As an example, we did a video a while back and kept getting complaints that employees couldn't get sound when they played it. Can you guess why? They didn't have speakers or sound cards on the computers! And no I'm not kidding.

Other clients have been unable to play videos posted to training sites because IT departments have blocked Flash or Flash Player updates, so corporate people had versions of Flash that were 5-6 years old, which couldn't play H264 content.

Even large, well-known corporate clients often have excruciatingly slow internet connections...with even 480x272 video choking upon playback.

The bottom line is to test any solution you propose to make sure it will work and play smoothly.

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


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