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Would love some tips on compression techniques and best practices

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Bekah Brown
Would love some tips on compression techniques and best practices
on Aug 9, 2012 at 9:26:38 pm

I work for an engineering company and have recently been asked to record some piping design classes. Each class lasts an hour to 1.5 hours. There is nothing super fancy to be done with these sessions; I just shoot the speaker and then add full screens of the PPT slides later, throw in some lower thirds, and render it out.

I just received a request to make them ready for distribution over our intranet and to our global offices. What I'm needing help with is the best workflow for compression and the best way to handle final video size. Obviously, the smaller the size the better, but I also need to keep the quality at a decent level.

I learned video editing on a Mac with AVID, Final Cut Pro, and Premier, but in the engineering world I have to work on a PC, and use programs that were purchased before I was hired (ie - I didn't have input as far as what I use). I edit on Sony Vegas Pro, and am still getting used to it, so I don't know all of the ins and outs just yet. I'm also pretty new to the world of media and haven't spent a lot of time seeking out the input of professionals or people who are more knowledgeable than I am.

Videos have to be in WMV format for our intranet, and usually CIM likes us to keep videos 50MB or smaller. I just rendered out last week's class with the highest compression setting I could find in Vegas and it came out at 336MB (it's a little over an hour long). Is there some trick to this that I don't know about?

EDIT:
Computer: Windows
OS: Windows 7 (could find any specific version.. service pack 1..?)
Software version#: Sony Vegas Pro 11.0
Source codec: AVCHD (MTS files off a Canon XA10)
Destination codec: WMV
Target: company's intranet site; Sharepoint


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Craig Seeman
Re: Would love some tips on compression techniques and best practices
on Aug 9, 2012 at 9:40:32 pm

If all you need is WMV, the free version of Microsoft Expression Encoder is very good.

http://www.microsoft.com/expression/products/Encoder4_Overview.aspx

Keep in mind you'll have some challenges before you.
The rules of encoding are universal.
file size equals duration times data rate.

If you're using PowerPoint you have to keep text legible.
That might involve some pre planing.
Big fonts, big graphics, no thin lines.

If you're limited in frame size you're going to be limited in data rate.
To improve quality you'd have to shrink frame size or lower frame rate.
If you're just dealing with talking head and PowerPoint still (avoid motion fx) then you can lower frame rate.



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