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#1 Andrew Aiello

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Posted 26 November 2008 - 11:32 PM

I am looking for the best possible quality of streaming video for my reel online. I was wondering what type of file, what size, and how is the best way to post your reel online so as to have two things - good quality, and streaming video so as to not make people wait for it to load. Any ideas? Thanks.
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#2 Chris Keth

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Posted 26 November 2008 - 11:36 PM

How's it going, Drew?

I just do mine in two sizes of medium-high quality H264 quicktime files. I do one full SD resolution and one that is half that size. It gives a 10ish meg file and a 25-30 meg file. I export and compress right out of final cut pro. It seems to give me pretty good results over a wide range of systems.
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#3 Scott Fritzshall

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 12:06 AM

Quicktime files encoded in h.264 are a good way to maintain quality while keeping your file sizes low. You're going to have to play around with the parameters, however, in order to get a good compromise of quality and speed.
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#4 Chris Keth

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 12:10 AM

Quicktime files encoded in h.264 are a good way to maintain quality while keeping your file sizes low. You're going to have to play around with the parameters, however, in order to get a good compromise of quality and speed.


Very true. I did a lot of testing with my reel and found that I couldn't tell the difference at the size I used between best, high, and medium-high quality settings so I went with the medium-high since it yields much smaller files sizes than the best quality. Your reel may have parts that need better compression than mine, though, so try your own tests.
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#5 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 12:19 AM

For online web as well I'm going to throw out flash's .flv format. If you get adobe master suite it comes with a flash video encoder. I prefer this as it streams much more quickly to websites, and is still something I can muck around with for a trade off of file-size and "quality." I then also opt for a h.264 .mov

Hey, has anyone else noticed a color space shift when doing h.264? My gamma sometimes goes nuts when I do it (and/or a few other quicktime formats out of AVID).
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#6 Chris Keth

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 12:46 AM

Hey, has anyone else noticed a color space shift when doing h.264? My gamma sometimes goes nuts when I do it (and/or a few other quicktime formats out of AVID).


I haven't. I side-by-sided my H264s with the stuff playing in FCP and they're identical, for all practical purposes.
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#7 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 12:48 AM

Hmm... Odd... Might be an Avid/QT thing for all I know.
I'll have to hop on an FCP and try an export-->compressor to see if it's the case. Thanks Chris.
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#8 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 01:05 AM

Vimeo handles QT h.264 HD video files superbly. Definitely recommended. Once is uploaded to Vimeo, one can embed the video on to another website, such as a self-promotional cinematography page.
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#9 Andrew Aiello

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 02:22 AM

thanks for all your advice, chris i sold your car.
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#10 Chris Keth

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 03:05 AM

thanks for all your advice, chris i sold your car.


Thanks. You can give me my $75 when I get back. ;)
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#11 Josh Silfen

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Posted 27 November 2008 - 03:46 AM

Hey, has anyone else noticed a color space shift when doing h.264? My gamma sometimes goes nuts when I do it (and/or a few other quicktime formats out of AVID).


Yes. This seems to be particularly true of video files that are exported from a Mac and viewed on a PC. h.264 is supposed to recognize the OS of the user and display the proper gamma, however there's some bug that causes a much flatter, more washed out image on a PC. Apple is apparently aware of this problem but they have done nothing to fix it. I only discovered this the other day after having used h.264 encoding for the last several years and was horrified to see what my reel has been looking like to PC users. There is a strange, somewhat complicated work-around solution to this problem that you can find here:
http://forums.cgsoci...p?f=10&t=643310

It requires quicktime pro and note that if you are using a Mac, you want to use "composition" transparency instead of "straight alpha". I have no idea what any of this means either, but it seems to do the trick. To further complicate matters, I found that once I followed the above steps, the resulting file looked ok on a PC, but the movement was somewhat juttery on my Mac. It might have been a little juttery on the PC too, but I didn't really notice it. In any case I would rather have slightly juttery movement for PC users than the major gamma shift. In the end, I made two versions of all my videos -- one with the above gamma fix for PC users and one without it for Mac users. Since my website is in Flash, I added a line of Flash code to detect the user's OS and direct them to the correct version of the video. Another option would be to just have two different links for PC and Mac users, or just live with the motion artifacts. Hopefully Apple will correct this problem soon.

Edited by Josh Silfen, 27 November 2008 - 03:49 AM.

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