H.264 Encoding

2005-10-18 02:24 ☼ post

After Apple announced their new iPod with built in video support last week I was motivated to start experimenting with encoding video using the relatively new h.264 codec again. Well, after a week or so of playing around with a couple dvd and video files there’s no question in my mind that h.264 is the way to go, but you had better have a fast processor and a lot of time on your hands. The quality is superb and definitely my first choice, but at 320x240/iPod quality my older 12″ 867MHz Powerbook could usually only encode at 10 fps encoding per pass and that means 5 or 6 hours per video at least if it’s anywhere near movie length. A higher resolution file approaching full dvd resolution took over 10 hours on a 1.42 GHz iBook that I borrowed from work.

I haven’t had a chance to play with the process from the PC side yet, mainly because the software isn’t quite as easy to use as Handbrake on the Mac is, but I’ll probably give it a shot in the next week or two.