Hi - I'm exploring mencoder for making a bunch h.264's in a batch...

I understand that when making H.264's, mencoder can either use libavcodec's libx264 library (which i believe is part of the ffmpeg project), or it can use it's own x264 encoding library... do I have that distinction correct?

My impression is that the libavcodec route is a lot more flexible, provides tons of option control, etc. About 381 options, judging by:

Since I don't think I'm going to need that kind of fine-grained control, I'm thinking of using x264 in mencoder directly, especially because it provides easier-to-use profiles and so forth.

Is there any dramatic difference in quality going one route or the other, considering that i wouldn't be expert in choosing my encoding options with libavcodec? I would just do some test encodings but it would take so long to sort out all the libavcodec options that I thought it might be more straightforward to just ask. Google'd around and didn't come up with anything...