What video format would EVERYONE be able to open?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Flying Llama, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. Flying Llama macrumors 6502a

    Flying Llama

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    #1
    Hi,

    I'm took my timed Keynote presentation and sent it to an uncompressed .mov file. I then added a .aiff soundtrack through Quicktime Pro.

    I then exported and now have a compressed H.264 .m4v file. It's perfect: the sound and video are great and everything is good. The file size is reasonable.

    However this will be burned to a CD and sent to an office. I don't know what computers they're running.

    What container format should I use? I could probably find software to transfer the video to something like .avi or .wmv, but I don't know what is the best way to go. The Mac and PC compatibility of this video should be as standard as is reasonable in today's time.

    Any help would be great, thanks.
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

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    #2
    .avi might not be recognised too, if it uses some codec that has not been installed on the target computer. Why not include the QuickTime Player installer for Windows on the CD?
    I have seen that often, when the video came in .mov format, even in the 90s.
     
  3. Flying Llama thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Flying Llama

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    #3
    Well that's a good idea, I guess... but there isn't a common format I can use? How about Flash (embedded into a .html file)? What about .wmv? Would that play on any Mac?

    I'm assuming they're using mostly Windows computers, so it wouldn't make sense to send a Mac format by default and then expect everyone to install software.
     
  4. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #4
    Could you link it to your website and merely direct people there to see it and give an option to download if they want a non-flash version

    Just my initial thoughts

    As far as file type, I think .mp4 is pretty common place
     
  5. simsaladimbamba

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    #5
    You need extra software to play .wmv files on Mac OS X.
    Why not include one .mp4 or .mov file combined with a .wmv file on the CD/DVD?
     
  6. Flying Llama thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Flying Llama

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    #6
    Well, the info in this presentation is sensitive. I can't have it publicly available and setting up authentication sounds like a nightmare.

    I took my wonderful .m4v file and changed the extension to .mp4. It uses H.264 video and AAC audio. It's only 32MB. It opens just fine in Quicktime, but now I'm going to test it on a Windows using only default programs. Hopefully it works fine.
     
  7. Flying Llama thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Flying Llama

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    #7
    simsaladimbamba, that's a good idea. If the .mp4 doesn't open through default Windows programs, I'll include a .wmv file and call it the "Windows version".
     
  8. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #8
    This is the Million Dollar question that everyone would love to solve. Plenty of companies will tell you it's their format, but the fact is that none of them are 100% foolproof.

    I currently say that h.264 is your best bet. I tend to re-name them from m4v or mp4 to 'file.mov,' though, so that more computers will know what to do with them. (I've run into Windows-machines that have software that can play h.264 but don't know what to open when they see an .m4v extention.)

    Including a WMV version is probably your 2nd best bet. Having those 2 versions will take you from "most" to "mostly all."
     
  9. KeithPratt macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    MPEG-1 might actually be most compatible, but of the codecs from this century, H.264 in MP4 container and WMV should cover just about everyone. The HTML file idea would cover just about everyone too, but there are several caveats that make it more hassle than it's probably worth.

    Not a good idea to go changing file extension willy nilly.
     
  10. ImperialX macrumors 65816

    ImperialX

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    #10
    It doesn't make a difference. It's only a container.

    Sent from my GT-I9100 using Tapatalk
     
  11. Darth.Titan macrumors 68030

    Darth.Titan

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    #11
    If you're sending it on a disc anyway, why not just make it a video DVD? That seems to be the most compatible solution. I don't know of many computers that can't play video DVDs.
     
  12. KeithPratt macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    That's pretty much my point. You can't just alter the file extension and expect the container to change as if by magic.
     
  13. MattSepeta macrumors 65816

    MattSepeta

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    #13
    Youtube

    A youtube or Vimeo link works for everyone.
     
  14. lostless macrumors 6502

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    #14
    .M4V is just an .MP4 container with extra info that apple put in that itunes supports like chapter markers, 5.1 AC3 track ect. If its just a h.264 video with AAC audio. Changing it to .mp4 does not harm the output. Just the extra info will get ignored if imported through itunes, or ignored by any other app.
     
  15. PenguinMac macrumors member

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    #15
    FWIW Windows 7 includes the H.264 & AAC codecs, so Windows Media Player will play any .MP4 file with H.264 video & AAC audio. Previous versions of Windows will require a .WMV file.
     
  16. chiefroastbeef macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    I always export to .mov from compressor. Obviously all Macs can read it, all modern PCs with windows media player can play .mov too. I would just keep it at .mov.
     
  17. simsaladimbamba

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    #17
    .mov is only the container, the codec is important too. What if you would use ProRes? One has to download drivers for playback on Windows machines.

    Anyway, the best codec would be H.264, as already mentioned once or twice.
     
  18. martinX macrumors 6502a

    martinX

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    #18
    I wish. Standard PC at work runs XP, so no MP4 for us. They can't even play DVDs unless IT installs PowerDVD, and VLC was banned. :rolleyes:

    I distribute WMVs for local playback and dropping into PPTs, burn DVDs for outsiders and the lucky few internals that can play them back and have decent speakers, and make MP4s for the intranet.

    The latter is my preferred option.

    Before I got Flip4Mac for my Mac and JW Player on the intranet, I used to make MPEG1s. That's as universal as you can get. Don't look so great and the file sizes are big, but universal is universal.
     
  19. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #19
    It's not like changing JPG to TIF. Yeah, that wouldn't work because those are the actual file type.

    But .mov isn't a file type. It basically means "hey, I have something in here that could be one of a hundred different things."

    Changing away from .mov can be a very bad idea. Changing to it is ok in a lot of situations. This is one of them. It's going from 'more specific' to 'less specific.'
     

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