Use Quicktime to decode the source video. If your source is NTSC video and you experiment audio sync problems, prefer this option. If your source is a VOB or MPEG-2 movie you will need the Quicktime MPEG-2 player component installed. If your source is a DivX movie, you will need the 3ivx.com and DivX.com codecs.
Use mplayer to decode the source video. Needed if you want to burn subtitles in the encoded movie. Currently only available for mpeg2enc mpeg-2 encoding. Please note that if you disable both "Decode with Quicktime" and "Decode with mplayer", ffmpeg will be used by default to decode.
ok, but can u tell, what works faster? is the quality equal?
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Having both "Decode with Quicktime" and "Decode with mplayer" disabled is faster (good with PAL, but often offsync with NTSC). Then comes "Decode with Quicktime" (default). And the slower is "Decode with mplayer" (needed for subtitling, missing QT component, or to read certains formats not handled by QT like VIDEO_TS).
Very interesting... and how do the three compare quality-wise?
From what I understand, QuickTime is timecode-based and mplayer is frame-based. What about ffmpeg? Ignoring subtitles, and assuming that there are no missing QuickTime components, how would you rank the three in terms of quality?
The output quality level is set by the encoder, much more than the decoder.