Seeking Input: Which Low-Res Rungs are Essential to an Encoding Ladder

Note: I received some very useful responses to this blog that are summarized in a post entitled, Choosing the Resolution for Lower Rungs on Your Encoding Ladder.  I could use some input from practitioners out there about which lower resolution rungs are essential to an encoding ladder. By way of background, I’m preparing a per-title encoding comparison. To derive the …

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Crunch Video Optimization Now Available on Oracle Cloud Marketplace

I’ve been a fan of video optimization technologies for a while now, and consider optimization simpler, cheaper, and potentially just as effective as adding a new codec like HEVC or VP9. I’m pleased to see that the Crunch Mediaworks Video Enhancement Solutions App is now available on the Oracle Cloud Marketplace. I reviewed Crunch‘s technology back in 2019 for video …

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Cloud Encoding Pricing Comparison Reveals Dramatic Cost Differences – Are You Overpaying?

This whitepaper, sponsored by Dolby/Hybrik, tracks cloud encoding pricing for H.264 and HEVC output and reveals dramatic price differences among popular services. I’ve just completed a whitepaper sponsored by Dolby/Hybrik to compare pricing for multiples of one hour of H.264 and HEVC encoding using the recommended encoding ladders in the Apple HLS Authoring Specifications. You can download the whitepaper here. …

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Which Codec Does YouTube Use, Part III

This article analyzes the codecs used by YouTube for 4K videos with millions of views, and the savings that AV1 and VP9 deliver over YouTube’s full encoding ladder.  This is the third in a series of articles written about which codecs YouTube uses. The first covers which codecs YouTube uses for high-volume 1080p videos. The second covers the codecs used …

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Formulate the Optimal Encoding Ladder with VMAF

This post describes how to formulate the optimal encoding ladder with VMAF. This analysis is excerpted from a lesson in the online course Streaming Media 101: Technical Onboarding for Streaming Media Professionals.  I received the following question from a reader; it’s got such general applicability that I thought I would share my response.  Question:  We’re currently reviewing our ABR ladder …

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Which Codecs Does YouTube Use?

Author’s Note (March 15, 2022): A colleague recently advised me that YouTube was now encoding all videos into VP9 format. A quick check revealed that he was correct; literally every video that I checked, including some uploaded back in 2010, was encoded into VP9 as well as H.264. What’s interesting is that many low-volume videos, like this one with 118 …

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Beginner’s Guide to Encoding H.264

Encoding H.264 with Wirecast

The H.264 codec is still the most widely used video compression technology — aka codec in the world and likely will be for the next few years. For this reason, every streaming media professional should know what the H.264 codec is and how to encode with H.264. This beginner’s guide to encoding H.264 will describe what H.264 is, detail the …

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Panel Discussion on Advanced Video Compression and Applications

I’m appearing on a panel next week at the SPIE Optics and Photonics Conference entitled Advanced Video Compression and Applications with a host of encoding luminaries. The panel will be streamed on August 3, 2021, at 3:30 PM PDT, but only registered guests can watch the Zoom feed (you can register here). The discussion will then be made available on YouTube …

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How to Choose Your Bitrate Control Technique

This article is derived from a lesson in Streaming Media 101: Technical Onboarding for Streaming Media Professionals. If you’re looking for an efficient way to get up to speed on key streaming terms, technologies, workflows, and best practices, check out the course here.  Every time you encode a video file with a distribution-oriented codec like H.264, HEVC, VP9, or AV1, …

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The past, present, and future of per-title encoding

Figure 2. Finding the Convex Hull.

Maya Angelou once said that “You can’t really know where you are going until you know where you have been,” and so it is with per-title encoding. What began as a one-dimensional data rate adjustment that reflected the simple reality that all videos encode differently is now a complex analysis that incorporates frame rate, resolution, color gamut, and dynamic ranges, …

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