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Advice needed for settings for an MP4 conversion from a quicktime reference

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Dean Fragola
Advice needed for settings for an MP4 conversion from a quicktime reference
on Feb 14, 2013 at 4:47:31 pm

I really appreciate everyone's help here ... as at first I felt so foolish in that I'm a director (and I don't really know all that much about tech stuff), but I'm trying to learn ... and it's amazing how helpful people can be ... so I just want to say that I really appreciate it.
And I just wanted to ask if someone can please run me through the setting for a MP4 conversion from a Quicktime reference. And I think one of the imperative aspects to consider is that I need to take into consideration that the footage is in 24p ... shot on a Canon XL-2 (so there might be a few critical settings to adjust based on the 24p factor).
Thanks!

ENCODE


Please let me know how to set the following options:

1. "Stream Type" ... 2 options:
Streaming (hinted)
Streaming (not hinted)
2. "Method" ... the 3 options are:
Sorenson 1-Pass VBR
Sorenson 2-Pass VBR
Constant Bit Rate

Then ... do I check or leave un-checked the various options?

Quick Compress ?
Drop framed to maintain data rate ?
B-frames ? (the 4 options are as follows):
OFF
AUTO
1
2
MPEG-4 Quantization ?
Quarter Sample ?
Interlace Compression ?
Global Motion Compensation ?
Insert Keyframes on scene changes ?

________________________________________________________________

STREAMING

Slice picture into packets of ______________ bytes ? (I have to put a number in there)
Force block refresh every ______________ seconds (I have to put a number in there)


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Michael Phillips
Re: Advice needed for settings for an MP4 conversion from a quicktime reference
on Feb 14, 2013 at 7:45:12 pm

What program are you using?

1 or 2 pass VBR or Constant Bit Rate (CBR) is how the encoding will optimize quality for bit rate. VBR is variable bit rate meaning the data rate change over the cource of the program, but frames/spans are ptiomized for the amount of data needed - simple images versus more complex images (higher data rate). 2 pass does more analysis than a 1 pass so in theory in order of image quality to time spent encoding as well as slowest to fastest:

2 Pass VBR
1 Pass VBR
Constant Bit Rate

Some streaming servers like CBR because once the data rate is known it can lock into that with no surprises of a spike coming later in the stream, but a lot of that was for older systems.

Quick Compress: I would say know, but am unsure on this one.
Dropped frames: no
B Frames: try auto to start
Insert key frames on scene changes: sure - mainly handy for chapter marks in DVD as it can only be on done on a key frame.

Global motion compensation: is that a value or Yes/No?

The rest I am unsure.


Michael

Interlace compression should be none considering this is a progressive file.


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Glenn Sakatch
Re: Advice needed for settings for an MP4 conversion from a quicktime reference
on Feb 14, 2013 at 8:42:12 pm

I agree with Michaels settings. My only comment is that you have to ask yourself what the purpose of the file is.

Clients say to us all the time "I want the best possible file of this half hour show...but i want it to be less than 3 megs 'cause i want to email it to someone" Those two statements don't always work together.

Is this a screener for content, for final colour, for audio mix?

Offline version 1 or Online Final?
How long is your piece. A VBR 2 pass for a 2 hour movie might not finish quickly enough for you or your clients needs, where as a lower quality cbr file might be done in an hour or so.

Personally i use Mpeg streamclip for most of my mp4 needs. it is fast, multiplatform, free and the settings (for the most part) can be left in default mode.
It allows batching of files, color adjustments, volume adjustments and i believe a watermark feature.

For critical outputs, you can run a test on a short segment, and tweak your settings till you are happy.

Glenn


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Dean Fragola
Re: Advice needed for settings for an MP4 conversion from a quicktime reference
on Feb 14, 2013 at 10:37:03 pm

Hey Glenn,
Thanks for the help.
It's not too long of a video ... it's 13 minutes ... and the client is going to put it up on his website (and I guess that's why he needs it in mp4?).
At any rate, he's wants the highest image quality possible so I'm trying to do my homework here as far as the settings (and I'm a little nervous that I'm going to screw up a few settings since this was shot in 24p ... and I would imagine that most default settings on these compression / converters are set for 30fps).
Where can I download/buy "streamclips" ... and does it allow for the input of quicktime references files to then be compressed / converted into mp4?
Thanks.


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Glenn Sakatch
Re: Advice needed for settings for an MP4 conversion from a quicktime reference
on Feb 14, 2013 at 10:44:03 pm

it is from a company called squared5. quick google should find it for you.

I have used it with Reference movies out of DS and Final Cut Pro. I would assume it would work out of MC.

One note with MC, i have had problems with MC and squeeze, if i didn't do a mixdown of the audio from MC during the creation of the reference movie, i didn't get an accurate "mix" on my quicktime reference movie.
(i was on 5.53 windows at the time)

Make sure your audio is good all the way through before you send it to the client.

Glenn


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Dean Fragola
Re: Advice needed for settings for an MP4 conversion from a quicktime reference
on Feb 15, 2013 at 2:19:17 am

Hey Glenn,
Ok, thanks. I'll keep an ear out for the final audio mix.
Dean


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Dean Fragola
Re: Advice needed for settings for an MP4 conversion from a quicktime reference
on Feb 14, 2013 at 10:30:22 pm

Hi Michael,
Thanks for the advice.
So I want to go with Constant Bit Rate (as far as the best quality)?
I'm going to try and do this on an older version of Sorenson Squeeze.
Dean


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