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Old 23rd January 2008, 21:13   #1  |  Link
Gussy
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Max Quality & Archival Purposes

I'm trying to encode videos for long term storage. In terms of being able to play them from a computer years from now, which DivX should I go with? Or should I stick with MPEG2 just to be safe.

Also, if max quality/resolution is needed which one should I use.

Thanks!
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Old 24th January 2008, 13:57   #2  |  Link
Brother John
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which DivX should I go with?
Not DivX 3. With a reasonably recent 6.x you should be fine, even if DivX might not exist in 10 years time. What DivX produces is MPEG-4 ASP video. And I wouldn’t worry about ASP decoders ceasing to exist.

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if max quality/resolution is needed which one should I use.
Original resolution and fixed quant 2 is about the best you can do for archival purposes. Might not be compatible with all standalone players though.
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Old 24th January 2008, 13:59   #3  |  Link
DJ Bobo
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I'm wondering what you mean with "which DivX should I go with?"
As far as I know, there aren't many DivX's out there. If you mean, 3.11 or the 6.x versions, you should clearly stick to the 6.x versions, since these are official.

For SD, if you have a DVD- or HDD-camcorder, you should stick to MPEG-2, the format in which the camcorder already stores the video. For DV-based camcorders, you should compress to MPEG-2 if you can afford bitrates higher than 5 Mbit/s, else stick to DivX.

For HD, if you have a camcorder based on MPEG-4 technology, leave the video as is, else you can compress to DivX, since MPEG-2 camcorders use very high bitrates (25 Mbit/s I think), not very practical if you have many videos to store. DivX can take the bitrate down to 10 Mbit/s or less easily without sacrifying quality. Of course, if you choose to compress to H.264, you'll be able to use an even lower bitrate by similiar quality (let's say 8 Mbit/s or less)
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Old 24th January 2008, 22:11   #4  |  Link
Gussy
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Yes, I mean the version. I've noticed that when I play different DivX (not done by me), some of them wouldn't play. I was told it is because of the codec. MPEG2 if is fine in quality for me but the size is huge. Does DivX have a nigher resolution?
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Old 25th January 2008, 16:12   #5  |  Link
DJ Bobo
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You can't say that a specific codec has a higher resolution than an another.
But the matrices used in the codec can have an influence on the overall sharpness feeling of the video.
For example, the H.263 matrix is a little bit blurrier than the MPEG-2 one.
If you stick to the Home Profile of DivX, you can't choose the MPEG-2 matrix (quantification), but you may wanna opt for the optimized version of H.263, which is supposed to be a bit better than the standard H.263 matrix.

As size is a concern for you, you should clearly stick to DivX, no doubt, since MPEG-2 is no good at lower bitrates.
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Old 25th January 2008, 23:59   #6  |  Link
Gussy
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Originally Posted by DJ Bobo View Post
As size is a concern for you, you should clearly stick to DivX, no doubt, since MPEG-2 is no good at lower bitrates.
Yes, size is an issue but if there is a big trade of in quality (e.g. like VHS vs. DVD type) I'd stick with quality. I guess, I'll have to test convert a few.
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Old 27th January 2008, 21:32   #7  |  Link
DJ Bobo
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No, there is no big trade in quality -as long as you don't lower the bitrate too much-
Let's say that you'll achieve similiar quality to MPEG-2 @ 6 Mbit/s with DivX @ 2 to 3 Mbit/s for the same resolution.
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Old 28th January 2008, 21:15   #8  |  Link
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Max quality, archival purposes sounds like AVC would be a good bet.

DivX and other MPEG-4 ASP video is certainly a lot faster to encode/decode, but I think you should give AVC (x264) a shot.

Basically, if you go to 2 to 3 Mb/s DivX, it should be perfect. x264 just needs less to be 'perfect', usually.
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Old 29th January 2008, 04:46   #9  |  Link
ron spencer
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DivX for archiving? No way...archiving means you value your stuff...why compress the h*ll out of it?

I keep my stuff in DV...hard drives are cheap and you keep flexibility with DV....only way to go.
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Old 29th January 2008, 05:47   #10  |  Link
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Yeah, either DV or .... H.264. It is the "next" standard, so it is guaranteed that it will be supported in the future. Plus it has a much better compression/quality ratio.

Meaning, less size -> more quality vs Divx, or H.263.
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Old 29th January 2008, 17:12   #11  |  Link
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I would not go with H.264 yet, there are about 400 profiles in H264 and no one knows which ones will drop out. If you do go with H264 I would suggest High Profile Level 4.1 (HP@L4.1) it seems to be the most common. I personally would go with DivX Home Theater profile, 95% of all DivX content that I have seen uses this profile. DivX files will be about 25%-30% larger to get the same quality as H264. If you use DivX keep it in the *.avi container not the *.divx container.
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Old 29th January 2008, 17:27   #12  |  Link
Dark Shikari
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Originally Posted by weaver4 View Post
I would not go with H.264 yet, there are about 400 profiles in H264
There are really only three in common use, much like there are only two MPEG-4 Part 2 profiles in common use.
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Old 29th January 2008, 20:04   #13  |  Link
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There are really only three in common use
Exactly! (Base) iPOD , (Main) PSP , (High) PS3. That's all what you need.
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Old 30th January 2008, 17:19   #14  |  Link
weaver4
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But some iPods use BP@L1.3 and others use BP@L3.0, right?

My point was that DivX is specific about which profiles to use; one for HH, one for SD, one for Portable.

For H264 the profiles that are in common use were driven by various manufactures and there is no guarantee that the next manufacture will not drive the profiles another direction. For example the next version of the Apple TV may be driven by "On line movie rental" and their box could be MP@L3.0 and then we would have another profile in "common use". Then Cisco could come out with a network box that does H264 and they....

But I would guess that HP@L4.1 will be around for a long while. I would bet that BP@L1.3 and (Main) PSP won't be "common" in 3 years. (2 out of your three).

Once the new chipsets get into the market that will force some standardization.

BTW: Atak your program (RipBot264) is great.

Last edited by weaver4; 30th January 2008 at 17:22.
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Old 30th January 2008, 18:44   #15  |  Link
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But some iPods use BP@L1.3 and others use BP@L3.0, right?
I use BP@L3.0

Quote:
I would bet that BP@L1.3 and (Main) PSP won't be "common" in 3 years
Maybe maybe not

At the moment PSP is able to decode 720x480@4mbps+ smoothly so PSP2 with HP@L4.1 support would be quite possible. HD player with HDMI in hand

Quote:
For example the next version of the Apple TV may be driven by "On line movie rental" and their box could be MP@L3.0 and then we would have another profile in "common use".
Apple is always behind
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Old 31st January 2008, 12:19   #16  |  Link
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Yeah, PSP is around Main@L3. I say around because the PSP has never needed the --level 3 tag in my experiences, and has better quality without it.

And YES... Apple will ALWAYS be behind.
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Old 31st January 2008, 19:19   #17  |  Link
Atak_Snajpera
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and has better quality without it.
How?????
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Old 31st January 2008, 19:24   #18  |  Link
Dark Shikari
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Originally Posted by Ranguvar View Post
Yeah, PSP is around Main@L3. I say around because the PSP has never needed the --level 3 tag in my experiences, and has better quality without it.

And YES... Apple will ALWAYS be behind.
That makes no sense because the only thing --level does is set a flag in the header. It does not affect quality.
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Old 1st February 2008, 00:13   #19  |  Link
Ranguvar
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Sorry, I just know that in Xvid, levels control max # of macroblocks, etc. And one person posted once he had seen better quality without that switch (In the XviD4PSP thread at Maxconsole, I think).

Guess it doesn't limit anything
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Old 1st February 2008, 16:35   #20  |  Link
Southstorm
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So getting back to Gussy...
There are many options, ie. Divx, x264, Mpeg2, DV, etc...
Start with one of the gui's mentioned in the forum and experiment. Most have profiles to go by, and do some visual comparisons on your own.
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