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Quicktime v. WMP


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#1 WaterWorks

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 05:16 AM

Now maybe I'm going to start up another loooong thread all about the pros and cons of Macs v. PC....... that's not my aim...... but just for eveyone's amusement, I only speak Apple........ so if you want to claim that I am biased then just maybe you're right....

Or maybe all of the cons I am about to point out about WMP only occur on Macs, and Windows suffer the exact same problems when using QT on their PCs...... If so, then pleeeease educate me!

Down to the point, I have 320 x 240 clips in my gallery - on my website - which are all pretty much compressed down to around about 1MB per minute of actual video........

http://www.waterwork...biz/gallery.htm you'll need to scroll down the page to find the video clips on offer..................

Now, surely the picture quality that I have acheived here is a wee bit (alright then, I'll blow my own trumpet, it is EXPONENTIALLY) better than the WMP files which I have seen that are compressed to around 2MB (approx.) per minute of video.....

Maybe I am acheiving this because I compress the soundtrack quite unsympathetically...... But still, the picture quality that I have acheived is remarkable compared to WMP files which have a data rate double and even 8X the rate of mine.... I've just been watching a clip compressed to 1000kbps...... REALLY pixellated!

PLUS - when watching a QT file, I can drag a playhead to position and the video scrolls along with it..... when releasing the playhead images continue immediately.... thus when watching a long clip I can scroll through loking for the interesting part.

When watching a WMP file, I cannot scroll through the timeline searching for an interesting place to stop and when I do decide to move the playhead on and continue watching I have to wait five to ten seconds for the video to catch up with the sound and start rolling! What? I am talking about WMP files which I have downloaded and therefore shouldn't be buffering or anything...

Oh my, I forgot!!! BUFFERING!!! Viewing QT off the 'net and they start immediately - well they load part of the clip first but at least I can start watching it when I decide to...... WMP files buffer for ages before they start playing and then after a little while, stop to re-buffer....... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz..................

I thought buffering was something that Dot-Matrix printers of the eighties and early nineties used to have to do before starting to print..... Actually, modern printers still buffer don't they? Point being, Quicktime doesn't.....
`
I could go on for hours about this, but won't cos those pros at Apple have very kindly done it all for me!

check out the facts at http://www.apple.com/quicktime/whyqt/

Very interested in other people's views on the matter......

You can't argue with the truth, which in this case makes a QT a VERY sweet pudding to masticate upon.......

Chris

#2 Poliwog

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 06:07 AM

One problem I found with QuickTime is:

When I want to upgrade to the latest QuickTime version, Apple wants to install iTunes on my Windows computer. I don’t use my computer for music, and resent having a company invite themselves onto my hard drive by installing a program that I don’t want.

I have the same sentiments for Adobe Photoshop with the software download feature for stock photography. I am a photographer – why would I want to purchase photos from stock photography agencies? A much better use of their software and my hard drive would be for me to be able to upload images to their site and make some money in return for buying their software.

Just something I’ve been masticating on…
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#3 WaterWorks

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 06:38 AM

Hey paul - niiiiice masticating action there!!!!!

I fully understand your point and feel as heavily upon resenting the guerilla marketing strategies that some companies have taken it upon themselves to use nowadays......

I'm not sure on this, BUT aren't you offered the choice as to take iTunes or not?

Like I say, I have no idea....... just presume that there may be a tick box or something else present.....

If not, PLEASE let me know cos there's no way that I would be promoting Apple's QT if they are being so stupid as to force something upon people which they never asked for....

Thanks for the feedback though, eh?

Chris

#4 wagsy

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 06:57 AM

Hello Chris

First of all you have some nice material on your site, I wish we had clear water like that over here, it makes a huge difference to picture quality. Well done..

WMV files do indeed start to play just like QT files do when you click on them from a website, depending on how big they are, and will play as the rest stills downloads. Once fully downloaded I can click anywhere on the clip and wmp will go to that spot and play just like QT do on my PC.

Compression/size looks nice, Ill do some my end using wmv to see it I can get the same results.

QT H.264 how many people out there on a PC have the latest QT version loaded to play H.264 Files? And like Poliwog stated, why shall I be forced to load itunes onto my computer, when I want to play H.264 files? Having said that, there is a standard QT player you can get without itunes but it's hidden in the Apple site and you have to go looking for it, but most people who end up there from a website will just click away as they don't want itunes as well.

WMV... how many people out there in WWW land have wmp standard on their PC... maybe 95% of the computers in the world?

H.264 may be indeed a slightly better compression format, but no use if most of the users don't have it on their computers. I use H.264 as well on my site but will be going back to WMV for the masses to view.
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#5 Drew

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 01:17 PM

Methinks you doth protest too much. :D
H264 is a better codec and also has smaller files. Quicktime has better media management than WMV. More popular doesn't mean better.
MOV files (with Quicktime Pro) have better flexibility in compression. WMV has better compression for audio. Finding a balance for file size and quality depends on what you are trying to do and your target audience. And of course if you want Mike V to see it or not. :lol:
You can download quicktime 7.1 without Itunes here:
Quicktime standalone

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#6 miguelvideosub

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 02:22 PM

The subject of the compression is clear from the point of view of the quality. But in my opinion, this matter only happen with mp4 or m4v, not with MOV, which I considerer worse than WMV.
Nevertheless, Waterworks, I believe that the best option is to have both formats wmv and mp4 in a web page, and thus we covered all the possibilities. In case of your Web, I see in necessity to install quick Time to be able to visualize videos, since you do not offer another alternative , so I am forced to install(it`s clear that is free), but you don´t give another option .
Another thing that I considerer is that when you use integrated video on a web page, with WMV you have the option to wacht it full screen( using the right click of the mouse) and that is not possible with quick time.
My opinion is that the best thing to do is offer both formats( I do it at my page).
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#7 Poliwog

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 05:36 PM

Scubadru

Thanks for the link to the QuickTime Standalone version.

Now, If we can just get Adobe to … :D

Waterworks

Don't mind me, I'm just into what I call the "elagance of simplicity". I like things that work -- first time, every time with a minimum of fuss and bother -- Something that I wasn't getting from the "marketing types" at Apple when I previously tried to download QuickTime.
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#8 WaterWorks

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 07:53 PM

Fantastic points people!

Wagsy, thanks for the kind words.... You've certainly enlightened me as to the timeline delays.... like I said, I thought it may have been a Mac problem, thank you for confirming that to me.....

I'm not going to get into the ins and outs of how many people CAN view the clips.... My aim, is for:

1. People who are adamant on watching my files downloading the superior software, (Joe blogs really doesn't concern me too much as he's not going to then get in touch offering any work, right? On the other hand, if a prospective client were to want to view the clips then, maybe naively, I believe that they will spend the minimal time to make the effort).

2. I am also trying to pursuade people to switch to QT in general, purely cos it's better...... as everything Apple-Mac-based is...:lol: ARGH I've done it again and used a freakin' emoticon!

3. Video Podcasts...... say no more........

Again, Wagsy, thanks for the pointers though, much appreciated...... ESPECIALLY the standalone download option.......

Scubadru, you're a genius - I'm updating the website with the new link now......

Mike V? Poor sod..... I know how he feels, my studio only got ADSL three months ago....... Oh the joys of 1MB connections....... You lot in the developed world are probablly scoffing at my snail-pace-like ADSL connection through your 16MB connections, right? :D (ooh, these acid faces can be quite fun, I guess......... :lol: )

Cheers though, people.....

Now get onto Apples website and start downloading........ ;)

#9 MikeVeitch

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 08:20 PM

Hey Chris... ADSL?!?!

IT took me 30 mins to open this post...

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#10 WaterWorks

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 12:46 AM

Maybe you've got ADSL already then?

A Damn Slow Line

(sorry)
:D

#11 SimonSpear

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 02:49 AM

First of all you have some nice material on your site, I wish we had clear water like that over here, it makes a huge difference to picture quality. Well done..


If Chris is diving Hin Muang / Hin Daeng all the time then I'm really jealous!! When the vis was 10m at Phi Phi it was 40m over there. They really are awesome dive sites, definately the best in Thailand I saw (although we didn't get the Similians).

Cheers, Simon

#12 MikeVeitch

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 04:53 AM

What?!?! Better than Stoney Cove Simon!?!?!?! Heaven forbid!

Just ask Dean B about his Pikey... hahaha

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#13 WaterWorks

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 05:38 AM

Simon,

At risk of losing your custom next time you are around, hit the Similans.....

When it comes to vis at the Similans - let me give you an example...... being able to spot the brand of a regulator from 40-50m distance on a diver is pretty fekkin' good vis.....

Generally Hin Daeng / Muang are pretty mediocre (vis wise) with major algae blooms to deal with frequently plus a lot of dirty thermoclines to peer through...... GREAT divesites though, don't get me wrong.......

Chris

#14 shawnh

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 08:08 AM

Hey folks,
What is the workflow for creating WMV files using Final Cut on an intel mac (Flip4Mac is not ported yet)? I plan on doing both .mov and .wmv files on my site.
Chris,
What .mov settings did you use to get that quality in such a small file (bit rate, passes, audio, etc)?
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#15 wagsy

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 08:13 AM

Well I made two clips.
The footage was shot with the FX1 in the Phenom housing.

Length= 3.35
Both are CBR and single path.

WMV9 = 188kbps 320 / 240
Sound = 8 kbps, 8 kHz, mono
5 megs
HERE IS THE WMV CLIP

QT H.264= 193kbps 320/240
Sound = ACC 8 kbps, 8 kHz, mono
5 megs
HERE IS THE QT CLIP

Take your pick but there is not much in it. Not enough to say one is allot better than the other. :D

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#16 SimonSpear

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 01:34 PM

LOL Mike, I know you're just jealous because you don't have neg vis and any wrecks to match the Stromgarth in Yap!! Quite by accident I found myself there last week actually - still not found bloody pikey though - no idea how Dean keeps finding him! I'm gonna be chasing after Baskers in Cornwall for a week or so as soon as they show up, so that should be fun, although it's gonna be hard to drag myself away from the Cove! :D

Chris we couldn't hit the Similians while we were there. It was August and no one was brave enough to head out. I fell in love with Hin Muang / Hin Daeng as soon as I hit the water, they really are wonderful dives. If we ever get back that way though we will definately time it better to make sure we can get a little further north :lol:

Cheers, Simon

#17 SimonSpear

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 01:40 PM

Wags if you are getting that performance with those size files then I seriously need to work on my compression. If I'd done anything like that they would be at least twice the size, probably treble!

Thanks for making me feel inadequate!! :D

Cheers, Simon

#18 wagsy

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 04:17 PM

Simon, the trick to compressing your lovely Stoney Cove clips :D is to make the audio low 8 kbps, 8 kHz, mono and then just run them out single pass CBR 188kbps 320 / 240.

But it is interesting to see both clips are about the same quality/size.
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#19 WaterWorks

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 04:34 PM

Just to rub it in further, Simon, using QT and mp4, I could've got Wags' file sizes down to 3 and a half Megs!!

Sorry, Wagsy, but I must disagree with the image quality point that you made..... it's immense! There's literally minimal pixellation in the QT file whereas the WMP file is really blocky...... really......

Do we have the proof right here before our very eyes then? Quicktime is THE world's leading media player? :D

Shawny, I use Flip4Mac for transfers IF my clients request it - however I fight them to the death that they should seriously consider QT......

I can't believe how SLOOOOOOW F4M are being with keeping up with the public!

"Nevada City, Calif., April 21, 2006 – Telestream, the provider of award-winning Flip4Mac™ digital media tools for the Mac, today announced development plans for its Windows Media Components for QuickTime..........released within the next quarter."

It took them >3 months to decide that they were going to do it! mmmmmmm...... sounds like a conspiracy in the making.......

Compression values - they are very unforgiving, but for some reason my computer seems to deliver.....

First and foremost, I'm choosing .MP4 over .MOV

VIDEO
format (codec) H.264
date rate - 130kbps
size - 320 x 240
auto keyframing

AUDIO
format - AAC-LC (music)
date rate - MAYBE 24kbps? (can't remember)
Stereo
Output sample - 8.000 kHz

Et VOILA!! Approximately 1MB per minute of video.......

Trying out the .mov method for you for the last half hour and best I got was 500KB for 15 seconds of video...... still double what I get with MP4....... Plus by then it started to look a little ropey........

Why not stick with MP4?

Good luck and happy compressing....

Chris

#20 wagsy

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 05:39 PM

I had better go and do some work now... but I did play them side by side in real time at the same time and there was not much difference in looks my end. I don't know how you can compress QT any lower as this was about as low as I would want to go before it got real bad.

I also played both at full screen on my twin 17inch screens at the same time in real time and QT may have been slightly better but I certainly would not say there was a huge difference.

Interesting anyhow....
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