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How to do a good conversion from mp4 to avi (for use on old tech)...

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Matthew Duffield
How to do a good conversion from mp4 to avi (for use on old tech)...
on Jun 26, 2014 at 10:10:07 pm

I have an old bit of tech that uses avi files of dubious quality and I used winff to convert them previously (until I updated my Linux Mint and it all went wrong). I have looked at some winff presets and I think mine was:

-f avi -r 29.97 -vcodec libxvid -vtag XVID -vf scale=640:480 -aspect 4:3 -maxrate 1800k -b 1500k -qmin 3 -qmax 5 -bufsize 4096 -mbd 2 -bf 2 -trellis 1 -flags +aic -cmp 2 -subcmp 2 -g 300 -acodec libmp3lame -ar 48000 -ab 128k -ac 2

Unfortunately, the latest version of ffmpeg available for Linux doesn't have libxvid anymore, it has these:

D.VI.. 012v Uncompressed 4:2:2 10-bit
D.V.L. 4xm 4X Movie
D.VI.S 8bps QuickTime 8BPS video
.EVIL. a64_multi Multicolor charset for Commodore 64 (encoders: a64multi )
.EVIL. a64_multi5 Multicolor charset for Commodore 64, extended with 5th color (colram) (encoders: a64multi5 )
D.V..S aasc Autodesk RLE
DEVIL. amv AMV Video
D.V.L. anm Deluxe Paint Animation
D.V.L. ansi ASCII/ANSI art
DEVIL. asv1 ASUS V1
DEVIL. asv2 ASUS V2
D.VIL. aura Auravision AURA
D.VIL. aura2 Auravision Aura 2
D.V... avrn Avid AVI Codec
DEVI.. avrp Avid 1:1 10-bit RGB Packer
D.V.L. avs AVS (Audio Video Standard) video
DEVI.. avui Avid Meridien Uncompressed
DEVI.. ayuv Uncompressed packed MS 4:4:4:4
D.V.L. bethsoftvid Bethesda VID video
D.V.L. bfi Brute Force & Ignorance
D.V.L. binkvideo Bink video
D.VI.. bintext Binary text
DEVI.S bmp BMP (Windows and OS/2 bitmap)
D.V..S bmv_video Discworld II BMV video
D.VI.S brender_pix BRender PIX image
D.V.L. c93 Interplay C93
D.V.L. cavs Chinese AVS (Audio Video Standard) (AVS1-P2, JiZhun profile)
D.V.L. cdgraphics CD Graphics video
D.VIL. cdxl Commodore CDXL video
D.V.L. cinepak Cinepak
DEVIL. cljr Cirrus Logic AccuPak
D.VI.S cllc Canopus Lossless Codec
D.V.L. cmv Electronic Arts CMV video (decoders: eacmv )
D.V... cpia CPiA video format
D.V..S cscd CamStudio (decoders: camstudio )
D.VIL. cyuv Creative YUV (CYUV)
D.V.L. dfa Chronomaster DFA
DEV.LS dirac Dirac (decoders: dirac libschroedinger ) (encoders: libschroedinger )
DEVIL. dnxhd VC3/DNxHD
DEVI.S dpx DPX image
D.V.L. dsicinvideo Delphine Software International CIN video
DEVIL. dvvideo DV (Digital Video)
D.V..S dxa Feeble Files/ScummVM DXA
D.VI.S dxtory Dxtory
D.V.L. escape124 Escape 124
D.V.L. escape130 Escape 130
D.VILS exr OpenEXR image
DEV..S ffv1 FFmpeg video codec #1
DEVI.S ffvhuff Huffyuv FFmpeg variant
DEV..S flashsv Flash Screen Video v1
DEV.L. flashsv2 Flash Screen Video v2
D.V..S flic Autodesk Animator Flic video
DEV.L. flv1 FLV / Sorenson Spark / Sorenson H.263 (Flash Video) (decoders: flv ) (encoders: flv )
D.V..S fraps Fraps
D.VI.S frwu Forward Uncompressed
..V... g2m GoToMeeting
DEV..S gif GIF (Graphics Interchange Format)
DEV.L. h261 H.261
DEV.L. h263 H.263 / H.263-1996, H.263+ / H.263-1998 / H.263 version 2
D.V.L. h263i Intel H.263
DEV.L. h263p H.263+ / H.263-1998 / H.263 version 2
DEV.LS h264 H.264 / AVC / MPEG-4 AVC / MPEG-4 part 10 (decoders: h264 h264_vdpau ) (encoders: libx264 libx264rgb )
DEVI.S huffyuv HuffYUV
D.V.L. idcin id Quake II CIN video (decoders: idcinvideo )
D.VI.. idf iCEDraw text
D.V.L. iff_byterun1 IFF ByteRun1 (decoders: iff )
D.V.L. iff_ilbm IFF ILBM (decoders: iff )
D.V.L. indeo2 Intel Indeo 2
D.V.L. indeo3 Intel Indeo 3
D.V.L. indeo4 Intel Indeo Video Interactive 4
D.V.L. indeo5 Intel Indeo Video Interactive 5
D.V.L. interplayvideo Interplay MVE video
DEVILS jpeg2000 JPEG 2000 (decoders: j2k libopenjpeg ) (encoders: j2k libopenjpeg )
DEVILS jpegls JPEG-LS
D.VIL. jv Bitmap Brothers JV video
D.V.L. kgv1 Kega Game Video
D.V.L. kmvc Karl Morton's video codec
D.VI.S lagarith Lagarith lossless
.EVI.S ljpeg Lossless JPEG
D.VI.S loco LOCO
D.V.L. mad Electronic Arts Madcow Video (decoders: eamad )
D.VIL. mdec Sony PlayStation MDEC (Motion DECoder)
D.V.L. mimic Mimic
DEVIL. mjpeg Motion JPEG
D.VIL. mjpegb Apple MJPEG-B
D.V.L. mmvideo American Laser Games MM Video
D.V.L. motionpixels Motion Pixels video
DEV.L. mpeg1video MPEG-1 video (decoders: mpeg1video mpeg1video_vdpau )
DEV.L. mpeg2video MPEG-2 video (decoders: mpeg2video mpegvideo mpegvideo_vdpau )
DEV.L. mpeg4 MPEG-4 part 2 (decoders: mpeg4 mpeg4_vdpau )
D.V.L. mpegvideo_xvmc MPEG-1/2 video XvMC (X-Video Motion Compensation)
D.V.L. msa1 MS ATC Screen
D.V.L. msmpeg4v1 MPEG-4 part 2 Microsoft variant version 1
DEV.L. msmpeg4v2 MPEG-4 part 2 Microsoft variant version 2
DEV.L. msmpeg4v3 MPEG-4 part 2 Microsoft variant version 3 (decoders: msmpeg4 ) (encoders: msmpeg4 )
D.V..S msrle Microsoft RLE
D.V.L. mss1 MS Screen 1
D.VIL. mss2 MS Windows Media Video V9 Screen
DEV.L. msvideo1 Microsoft Video 1
D.VI.S mszh LCL (LossLess Codec Library) MSZH
D.V.L. mts2 MS Expression Encoder Screen
D.VIL. mvc1 Silicon Graphics Motion Video Compressor 1
D.VIL. mvc2 Silicon Graphics Motion Video Compressor 2
D.V.L. mxpeg Mobotix MxPEG video
D.V.L. nuv NuppelVideo/RTJPEG
D.V.L. paf_video Amazing Studio Packed Animation File Video
DEVI.S pam PAM (Portable AnyMap) image
DEVI.S pbm PBM (Portable BitMap) image
DEVI.S pcx PC Paintbrush PCX image
DEVI.S pgm PGM (Portable GrayMap) image
DEVI.S pgmyuv PGMYUV (Portable GrayMap YUV) image
D.VIL. pictor Pictor/PC Paint
DEV..S png PNG (Portable Network Graphics) image
DEVI.S ppm PPM (Portable PixelMap) image
DEVIL. prores Apple ProRes (iCodec Pro) (decoders: prores prores_lgpl ) (encoders: prores prores_anatoliy prores_kostya )
D.VIL. ptx V.Flash PTX image
D.VI.S qdraw Apple QuickDraw
D.V.L. qpeg Q-team QPEG
DEV..S qtrle QuickTime Animation (RLE) video
DEVI.S r10k AJA Kona 10-bit RGB Codec
DEVI.S r210 Uncompressed RGB 10-bit
DEVI.S rawvideo raw video
D.VIL. rl2 RL2 video
DEV.L. roq id RoQ video (decoders: roqvideo ) (encoders: roqvideo )
D.V.L. rpza QuickTime video (RPZA)
DEV.L. rv10 RealVideo 1.0
DEV.L. rv20 RealVideo 1.0
D.V.L. rv30 RealVideo 3.0
D.V.L. rv40 RealVideo 4.0
D.V.L. sanm LucasArts SMUSH video
DEVI.S sgi SGI image
D.VI.S sgirle SGI RLE 8-bit
D.V.L. smackvideo Smacker video (decoders: smackvid )
D.V.L. smc QuickTime Graphics (SMC)
DEV.LS snow Snow
D.VIL. sp5x Sunplus JPEG (SP5X)
DEVI.S sunrast Sun Rasterfile image
DEV.L. svq1 Sorenson Vector Quantizer 1 / Sorenson Video 1 / SVQ1
D.V.L. svq3 Sorenson Vector Quantizer 3 / Sorenson Video 3 / SVQ3
DEVI.S targa Truevision Targa image
D.VI.. targa_y216 Pinnacle TARGA CineWave YUV16
D.V.L. tgq Electronic Arts TGQ video (decoders: eatgq )
D.V.L. tgv Electronic Arts TGV video (decoders: eatgv )
DEV.L. theora Theora (encoders: libtheora )
D.VIL. thp Nintendo Gamecube THP video
D.V.L. tiertexseqvideo Tiertex Limited SEQ video
DEVI.S tiff TIFF image
D.VIL. tmv 8088flex TMV
D.V.L. tqi Electronic Arts TQI video (decoders: eatqi )
D.V.L. truemotion1 Duck TrueMotion 1.0
D.V.L. truemotion2 Duck TrueMotion 2.0
D.V..S tscc TechSmith Screen Capture Codec (decoders: camtasia )
D.V.L. tscc2 TechSmith Screen Codec 2
D.VIL. txd Renderware TXD (TeXture Dictionary) image
D.V.L. ulti IBM UltiMotion (decoders: ultimotion )
DEVI.S utvideo Ut Video
DEVI.S v210 Uncompressed 4:2:2 10-bit
D.VI.S v210x
DEVI.. v308 Uncompressed packed 4:4:4
DEVI.. v408 Uncompressed packed QT 4:4:4:4
DEVI.S v410 Uncompressed 4:4:4 10-bit
D.V.L. vb Beam Software VB
D.VI.S vble VBLE Lossless Codec
D.V.L. vc1 SMPTE VC-1 (decoders: vc1 vc1_vdpau )
D.V.L. vc1image Windows Media Video 9 Image v2
D.VIL. vcr1 ATI VCR1
D.VIL. vixl Miro VideoXL (decoders: xl )
D.V.L. vmdvideo Sierra VMD video
D.V..S vmnc VMware Screen Codec / VMware Video
D.V.L. vp3 On2 VP3
D.V.L. vp5 On2 VP5
D.V.L. vp6 On2 VP6
D.V.L. vp6a On2 VP6 (Flash version, with alpha channel)
D.V.L. vp6f On2 VP6 (Flash version)
DEV.L. vp8 On2 VP8 (decoders: vp8 libvpx ) (encoders: libvpx )
DEV.L. vp9 Google VP9 (decoders: libvpx-vp9 ) (encoders: libvpx-vp9 )
DEV.L. wmv1 Windows Media Video 7
DEV.L. wmv2 Windows Media Video 8
D.V.L. wmv3 Windows Media Video 9 (decoders: wmv3 wmv3_vdpau )
D.V.L. wmv3image Windows Media Video 9 Image
D.VIL. wnv1 Winnov WNV1
D.V.L. ws_vqa Westwood Studios VQA (Vector Quantized Animation) video (decoders: vqavideo )
D.V.L. xan_wc3 Wing Commander III / Xan
D.V.L. xan_wc4 Wing Commander IV / Xxan
D.VI.. xbin eXtended BINary text
DEVI.S xbm XBM (X BitMap) image
DEVIL. xface X-face image
DEVI.S xwd XWD (X Window Dump) image
DEVI.. y41p Uncompressed YUV 4:1:1 12-bit
D.V.L. yop Psygnosis YOP Video
DEVI.. yuv4 Uncompressed packed 4:2:0
D.V..S zerocodec ZeroCodec Lossless Video
DEVI.S zlib LCL (LossLess Codec Library) ZLIB
DEV..S zmbv Zip Motion Blocks Video


I've tried the following command:

ffmpeg -i SD1.mp4 -f avi -r 29.97 -vcodec mpeg4 -vtag mpeg4 -vf scale=640:480 -aspect 4:3 -maxrate 1800k -b:v 1500k -qmin 3 -qmax 5 -bufsize 4096 -mbd 2 -bf 2 -trellis 1 -flags +aic -cmp 2 -subcmp 2 -g 300 -acodec libmp3lame -ar 48000 -ab 128k -ac 2 SD1.avi

I changed -b 1500k to -b:v 1500k as it said I was ambiguous. The output from the conversion was:

...
Stream mapping:
Stream #0:0 -> #0:0 (h264 -> mpeg4)
Stream #0:1 -> #0:1 (aac -> libmp3lame)
Error while opening encoder for output stream #0:0 - maybe incorrect parameters such as bit_rate, rate, width or height


oooooh, while typing this and trying things I found the vtag bit and changed the parameters to:

ffmpeg -i SD1.mp4 -f avi -r 29.97 -vcodec mpeg4 -vf scale=640:480 -aspect 4:3 -qscale:v 10 -acodec libmp3lame -ar 48000 -ab 128k -ac 2 SD1.avi.avi"

IT WORKS!

Is there a better way?


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