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FCP X-Compressor - no CBR (constant bit rate) in the .mp4 outputted file?

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Sam Lee
FCP X-Compressor - no CBR (constant bit rate) in the .mp4 outputted file?
on Oct 13, 2016 at 7:20:02 am

I would like to know once and for all if the latest version of Compressor supports CBR? There's no setting whatsoever on it. All I can do is set my own custom bit rate. But after the export, sadly it's VBR. Have to use Premiere Pro to get CBR. However, because of the plugin involved, direct outputting in FCP X save an intermediate Pro Res 422 stage.


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCP X-Compressor - no CBR (constant bit rate) in the .mp4 outputted file?
on Oct 13, 2016 at 12:07:32 pm

Although I haven't tested myself, try using one of the "Prepare for HTTP Live Streaming" presets unaltered. Generally it's recommended that those be CBR so Apple might have built it in (non uncommon for how they handle things).



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Paul Figgiani
Re: FCP X-Compressor - no CBR (constant bit rate) in the .mp4 outputted file?
on Oct 13, 2016 at 5:16:44 pm

Create New Preset in Compressor. Select Quicktime Export Component. Set the Encoder Type to MPEG-4.

Then Settings/Configure. Customize as needed.

-paul.



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Craig Seeman
Re: FCP X-Compressor - no CBR (constant bit rate) in the .mp4 outputted file?
on Oct 13, 2016 at 10:03:05 pm
Last Edited By Craig Seeman on Oct 13, 2016 at 10:04:00 pm

I tested Paul's method with QTComponents, my suggested HTTP Live Streaming modified setting, Video Sharing Services 1080 modified. Same source file for all. I set data rate for 1500kbps. Paul's method looks the same as HTTP but with very slightly lower peaks. Video Sharing Services has the widest swings.






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Craig Seeman
Re: FCP X-Compressor - no CBR (constant bit rate) in the .mp4 outputted file?
on Oct 13, 2016 at 10:23:15 pm
Last Edited By Craig Seeman on Oct 13, 2016 at 10:29:35 pm

I then did an encode targeting the same data rate in Telestream Episode which actually allows me to select CBR. It's the bottom added data rate chart. Note the difference. Episode, which can be set to CBR, is closest to CBR.

It does not look like Compressor supports CBR very closely.





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Sam Lee
Re: FCP X-Compressor - no CBR (constant bit rate) in the .mp4 outputted file?
on Oct 14, 2016 at 4:39:59 am

Thanks for the tip. I tried but somehow I couldn't get the audio to 48 Khz. It maxed out at 44.1 Khz, which will not work for many of the recent online video platforms. 100% CBR, found on Adobe Media Manager, is required. Looks like Compressor has many years of R&D to go to catch up with the rest of the encoders in term of features.

On a different topic, I see that Telestream will discontinue their Episode product line next year. I'm very reluctant to purchase any of their apps. Even if I use Episode Pro, I still need to export to Pro Res 422. I have a huge series of 200+ 1 hr timeline need to go directly to .mp4 CBR. Skipping the Pro Res intermediate file will help to cut the processing time considerably.


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Craig Seeman
Re: FCP X-Compressor - no CBR (constant bit rate) in the .mp4 outputted file?
on Oct 14, 2016 at 2:18:46 pm

While Compressor is certainly lacking for CBR, the need for it is become less frequent. One common use is for HTTP in which the bit rate changes based on the user's internet connection speed. There's a need for CBR in some live streaming situations but that wouldn't involve Compressor.

I'm not sure what Adobe Media Manager is or why it would require 100% CBR. I'd think if any Adobe program needs CBR then Adobe Media Encoder would support it.


Both Vimeo and YouTube request 48kHz audio. Facebook used to request 44.1kHz but I've noted they've dropped that requirement recently.

I have absolutely no problem setting Compressor H.264 encoding to 48kHz. I'm surprised that you say Adobe has an issue doing that. Certainly Compressor doesn't have this issue. Most of my H.264 encoding is at 48kHz in Compressor.

Compressor has made major improvements in the last couple of updates. I don't doubt that the ubiquity of Compressor and Adobe Media Encoder are factors in the end of life of Episode. Compressor's H.264 encoding, once near the bottom of the quality rung is now very close to x264. Adding High Profile and CABAC entropy was another big improvement. Also the ability to take advantage of Intel QuickSync has made it very fast (and why you may find Quad i7 Macs faster for encoding than MacPro Xeons).

Episode sales stop and the end of January 2017 and support will continue until the end of January 2018. Telestream now offers Cloud encoding. Of course this relates to an issue you note about having to create an intermediary. Episode has a plugin for Premiere Pro so I don't think an intermediary is needed in that case.



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