I my previous post “Please end the codec war”, I touched upon some of the challenges and annoyances of the messy “codec war” going on between the different camera- and software vendors.
Some things have changes since then, a lot of it is still sadly the same. I was tempted to call this post the “AVC-I war”.
Panasonic and Sony are still at it, claiming one format is better than the other. Fact is though, they have never been closer to the same standard and format.
Both codec families, AVC-Ultra (Panasonic) and XAVC (Sony), are actually so similar it all becomes rather silly. Adobe Media Encoder even does “Smart Rendering” (re-wrapping) when converting from AVC-Intra 100 to XAVC Intra 100, when the frame size and frame rate is the same.
I think a lot of people wonder how to find the optimal video bitrate for efficient encoding of H.264 video. There is no universal answer to this, because it all depends on the content of the video material. Luckily, the video encoding genius Robert Reinhardt has created a simple little Adobe AIR app called Bitrate Starter.
This handy little tool will get you started, but remember that you still have to do your own testing to find the optimal settings for the best possible quality/file size ratio. Video compression, especially for web, is all about testing.
There is a war going on in the broadcast camera industry. I would like to call it the “codec war”. This battle has in turn forced the post-production industry to create their own post-production friendly codecs. Because of this war, or whatever you would like to call it, we are now more than ever dealing with unnessecary interoperability issues, workarounds and a whole lot of transcoding.