We were earlier converting all our videos into a standard FLV format where the video bitrate was set to be 1324kbps. The rationale for choosing that number was that it was the bitrate of a video whose quality we were trying to match (that was an FLV file as well).
However, we're now shifting our videos to MP4 format and I'm trying to standardize all our videos into a certain bitrate which is of an acceptable quality.
Instead of a random number, I'm trying to determine if there is a 'standard' set of video bitrates that I *should* be using?
I'm thinking powers of 2, but is there a finer increment possible?
There really is no standard for bitrates. It's whatever you want to set it to. Furthermore, the bitrate is a very poor indicator of the output quality. What's better is to set the quality level you want, and let the encoder figure out how many bits are needed to achieve that quality. Different content requires different bitrates to achieve the same quality. Fast motion content requires a lot higher bit rate than slow motion content for example.
Also, your flv video probably already has it's video stream in h264 content, so there's no need to re-encode it. Just dump the video and audio streams into an MP4 container without re-encoding. Much faster, and no loss in quality.