Episode 123: Compression, Codecs and everything else you wanted to know about converting video

This week we take an in depth look at compression and what all those crazy settings mean, and how to best distribute your end user. PLUS we announce the Great Game Show giveaway, get some sweet resources from the stockpile and give you a glimpse at the state of the motion design industry.


MotionGraphicDesignCensus.org results


VintageChurch.cc – Free Church Graphics
80 color altering Photoshop actions

Compression, Codecs and everything else you wanted to know about converting video.

Popular Compression programs:
Adobe Media Encoder – Included in Adobe Production Premium
Apple’s Compressor
Sorenson Squeeze


The Great Game Show Giveaway:

11 Responses

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Brad Zimmerman and gersonmora, kioskomedia. kioskomedia said: RT @cmdtv: Episode 123: Compression, Codecs and everything else you wanted to know about converting video – http://cmd.tv/123 […]


awsome and extremely useful episode! I started with After Effects about four months ago, but spending around eight hours per day on tutorials and experiments I can follow through. So my question is " I use AE for… effects and such but my next step is to re-edit, combine different footage together, add sound effects in Final Cut Pro. To my best knowledge I have to export from AE using H.264 but that means when I am about to export from FCP for a second time I m about to use H.264 again in Compressor for the final output -that is twice compressed so far and quality is poor. If I get it right with this episode it would be much better to export from AE using the photo-jpg option and then leaving compressor to encode with H.264. I feel it would be better to work with Adobe Suite only but as a wedding videographer I use a lot of FCP. Plus, how can i export in 640×360 and have the HD quality in youtube instead of the poor 360p I get. Hopefully all these make sense to you and again consider me as a true believer and member of your CMD. Greetings from Santorini Island, Greece.

when i export from AE so I can sometime re-edit or add sound effects in Final Cut Pro


Interesting post with some great information. Never understood the level parameter either. Spend a little time hacking together the skin from DesignKindle.com; still a work in progress as there are lots of states for the various buttons. You can snag a preview here: http://www.danielmerchen.com/test/ec/cmdh5elegant

Anything tossed in the file variable should change the file the player is displaying. There were various versions of the source file; which one in particular were you interested in?


Thanks man. really helpful. Seriously.


Since you're talking about compression and codecs, I want to know how many others are having trouble with episodes of CMDtv on the iPhone. iTunes isn't able to sync about 20% or so of the episodes to my iPhone 4 because they "cannot be played on the iPhone." This episode in particular wouldn't sync which is why I'm on the website today. Episode 122 was the same way too. Anyone else having this problem or is it just me?

Thanks for all your work, Brad! Love the show and I've learned a ton over the years!!!



At first – Very good and usefull episode.

I'm filming with T2i which produces .mov files very difficult to edit.
I'm editing in Premiere Pro and via Dynamic link in After Effetcs.

Premiere doesn't work smooth with mov file direct from T2i.
Which codec do You suggest to compress mov files for editing in Premiero Pro without loosing quality?
Now I'm working with CineForm codec with different results.
I'm talking about HD quality (720p,1080p).

Thank You for quick reply.
Best regards.
Marcin, Poland.


I am trying to compress a Quicktime video to H.264 with Adobe Encoder – I have tried several different settings similar to what you suggest and the video always looks jumpy. Do you know what I should look at to correct this? Thanks.

Thx for your teaching:)

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