Best Practices: exporting Quicktime Lectures for the web?
February 18, 2005 11:17 AM   Subscribe

I'm working on a grant-funded project, and need to compress long lectures (captured with a DV cam) into a web-ready format- I've purchased Quicktime Pro and need help with the settings...

I've got several hour-long lectures that I want to put online. Is there an optimal setting or compressor to use in Quicktime Pro? I'd like a minimum of 320x240 video in the end, with decent quality audio, and it would be really cool if I could keep the files somewhere around 100mb. I realize this may be unrealistic, but the closer I get to that goal, the smoother things will go. The files can be downloaded and not streamed, but need to be reasonable to download.

Any advice on compressor settings, audio settings, and so on would be greatly appreciated. I've got a fair amount of experience messing with this sort of thing, so technical terms and discussion are welcome and wanted. If you think I should be compressing with something else (keep in mind, for a wide audience on possibly restricted machines)... Please, let me know. Ditto with any real-world anecdotal evidence type stuff. Thanks.
posted by fake to Technology (4 answers total)
Sorenson squeeze (Mac or PC) is what you want.

It has the abilty to digitize off of camera - has some pretty good presets.

How long is the lecture? You can expect at a lower rate of about a 2-3 megs/minute for QT (I'd probably use Windows Media Player). The bitrate would be around the 40KB/second with that.

if you have ten or so clients downloading at a "decent" setting (such as that), it will eat up a T1 line pretty quickly.

Are you intending to "fast download?" or stream?

Feel free to email me directly - I teach/implement/use NLE, DVD & compression systems every day.
posted by filmgeek at 11:32 AM on February 18, 2005

Ok- I'll look into acquiring Sorenson Squeeze- though cost may become an issue (399$!). Do I need the suite or can I just get the Mpeg 4 codec? I see that there's a Sorenson video codec in my Quicktime export options- is this a different codec?

To answer your questions, the lectures are one hour long (give or take)...

I don't have access to the server personally, so they'd probably not be streaming videos.

thanks again.
posted by fake at 11:51 AM on February 18, 2005

The only success I've had with compressing large amounts of video was using mplayer's mencoder to make Xvids out of a captured DTV stream. I did it under Linux and haven't gotten around to replicating it under Windows since I dumped Linux. But you shouldn't have too many problem finding or making a Mac OS compile.
posted by krisjohn at 2:58 PM on February 18, 2005

If it's DV you're using then the compressors in iMovie (under "Export" or "Share") work fine. 100 MB for an hour (=222 kbps) at 320*240 is pushing your luck, even with the best codecs. 240 by 180 might get reasonable results. Use either H.263 or MPEG4, and most of all experiment with short clips at different settings.
posted by cillit bang at 6:44 PM on February 18, 2005

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