April, 2022

  • 1 April

    Constrained VBR Levels of the Rich and Famous

    I’ve been wondering if publishers still care about constraining their maximum bitrates (see here for more background), so I grabbed my copy of youtube-dl and performed a little study. The TL/DR version seems to be that new media sites like YouTube, Facebook, and Vimeo don’t strictly adhere to the typical …

March, 2022

  • 29 March

    Does Anyone Care About Constrained VBR Anymore?

    I’m comparing cloud-based per-title VOD encoding technologies for a report I hope to publish in the near term. In an attempt to create a level playing field I set the following specifications. 2-second GOP 200% constrained VBR 2-second VBV buffer Kind of like you were encoding with FFmpeg and using …

  • 2 March

    Bitmovin Video Developer Report Reports on Codec Usage

    Bitmovin Video Developer Report

    Every year around this time, like an early Christmas present, Bitmovin releases its Annual Video Developer’s Report, a must-read for all streaming media professionals. Now in its fifth year, the report contains valuable insights regarding codec usage, production workflows, and the issues that are keeping streaming professionals up at night, …

  • 1 March

    VVC Performance, Royalty, and Implementation Status

    Figure 5. VMAF BD-Rate table for multiple codec implementations.

    VVC reached First Draft International Specification in July 2020. We’re about 18 months past that date and it’s useful to check in on VVC progress to date, including licensing, performance, chipset development, and trials. VVC Patent Owners Video quality is nice, but money makes the world go-’round, so let’s start …

January, 2022

  • 31 January

    Does FFmpeg 5 Break Your Scripts?

    FFmpeg turns 5.0; the new release has big API changes but doesn’t appear to break existing command scripts, though x265-based encodes are worth checking. As much as we like major releases of programs that we know and love, one big question is always whether it changes how we use the …

  • 7 January

    Learn to Use AWS Elemental Auto-ABR

    A recent tutorial posted on Streaming Media Magazine details how to use AWS Elemental’s Auto-ABR feature. Here’s the scintillating intro. Per-title encoding has been around since 2016, delivering significant bandwidth savings, QoE improvements, or both to companies that deploy it (click here for a backgrounder on per-title encoding). Those benefits …

November, 2021

  • 28 November

    How to Choose The Best Cloud-Based Per-Title Provider

    This video discusses how to choose the best cloud-based per-title provider. This was a talk I gave to the Streaming Video Alliance in late November 2021. The 23-minute presentation covers the following agenda with extensive examples. You’ll find the talk useful if you’re comparing per=title encoding features, particularly cloud-based, but …

  • 27 November

    Crafting the Ideal Encoding Ladder in Two Simple Steps

    Companies attempting to formulate the ideal encoding ladder for specific videos or classes of content should incorporate both the harmonic mean VMAF score for overall quality and the percentile score to minimize transient quality issues.   I’ve spent much of the last few weeks benchmarking H.264 and HEVC cloud-based per-title encoding …

October, 2021

  • 23 October

    Choosing an x265 Preset: an ROI Analysis

    This post presents a return on investment view of choosing an x265 preset that delivers the optimal blend of encoding cost and storage and bandwidth savings. The first chart, x265 Encoding Time/Quality Tradeoff, is from a lesson in my course Streaming Media 101: Technical Onboarding for Streaming Media Professionals.  Given …

  • 19 October

    Buyers Guide: Choosing a Software-Based Streaming Encoder for VOD

    Buyers Guide: Choosing a Streaming Encoder for VOD

    This entry-level article describes what an encoder is and how to choose one and focuses on VOD, not live. It was derived from a lesson in my Streaming Media 101 course, which teaches you the skills and techniques to succeed in a streaming media-related role. Click here for more details …