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  1. So this has me wondering a little. When I record video on my smartphone, I nearly always do so in 4K mode. However, I can choose either H.264 or H.265. And I am wondering which one I should choose? Part of me feels agnostic, like, what difference does it make? But then part of me feels like, maybe I should care? Or, maybe I don't care right now, but I will in the future?

    FWIW, I am unable to play the H.264 4K video on any traditional device e.g. PC or laptop. The only way I have been able to successfully watch my recorded video (other than on my phone) is via Miracast to my TV which works flawlessly. While I find it rather odd that modern phones and CE seems to be outpacing PCs/laptops, I am not concerned if H.265 has very little device support currently.
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  2. Dinosaur Supervisor KarMa's Avatar
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    Ummm well. H.265 is designed to be more bitrate efficient, especially at UHD. But when dealing with a low power cell phone encoder I don't really know. Maybe make test footage on both settings and compare. Seems like quality and bitrate are your only two factors, since you don't care that H.265 is barely supported.

    As far as playing your H.264 4K, it shouldn't be that complex to decode since a cell phone encoded it. I can play heavily compressed 4K x264 video fairly well, with my ancient 2008 ATI card (4670) and LAV Filters.
    Last edited by KarMa; 21st Jun 2016 at 20:59.
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    H.265 requires a lot more CPU power than H.264 to be decoded just as well as it takes more CPU power to be encoded, even with support of specialized chipsets. So if you do care about your battery capacity, more than your file storage capacity, thinking "conservatively" may not be wrong.
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  4. Member racer-x's Avatar
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    AVC is much easier to edit than HEVC. That may be something to consider as well.
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  5. Interesting comments, thanks. Fortunately, battery life and storage is not a problem. I was able to make a 20+ minute 4K video (H.264) recently which was nearly 9 GB (~60 Mbps). I have the phone setup to record straight to my microSD card (128 GB). So I think not writing to internal memory saves battery life.

    I need to run some tests because I am not sure at what bitrate H.265 records. But all things being equal (bit depth, chroma sampling, etc.), if the only meaningful difference in 4K AVC/HEVC video is bitrate, then wouldn't that push one towards AVC? And here is the real gist of my question. I know that argument doesn't necessarily hold up when comparing MPEG-2 vs MPEG-4. Sure, the bitrate for MPEG-2 is fatter, but that doesn't necessarily translate into better HD video. My understanding is that there are a lot of other technical reasons that make MPEG-2 obsolete when talking about HD video.

    So maybe I am searching for a rule of thumb. For example:

    SD Video: H.262
    HD Video: H.264
    UHD Video: H.265
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    That used to be true for consumer media. DVD Video in SD resolutions used only MPEG-2 video (H.262) because decoder chips did not support more complex formats in their days... But today, there is no more reason not to use more modern formats even for lower resolutions.

    In the era of transition from SD to HD, you may also add DivX (and Xvid) which may use H.263 quantization in MPEG-4 Part 2 video. Just DivX movies were usually not sold on optical disks, so it was not really a "consumer format" in comparison to DVD Video and Blu-ray.
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    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    My understanding is that there are a lot of other technical reasons that make MPEG-2 obsolete when talking about HD video.

    So maybe I am searching for a rule of thumb. For example:

    SD Video: H.262
    HD Video: H.264
    UHD Video: H.265
    "Officially" at least, MPEG-2 cannot go above 1920x1152, which is a serious limitation of course.

    VC-1 cannot go beyond 20481536 (@24fps), which sucks as well.

    fwiw, MPEG-4 ASP (i.e., DivX and Xvid) supports HD resolutions fine.
    Last edited by El Heggunte; 22nd Jun 2016 at 14:30. Reason: grammar
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  8. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    Seeing how "HD resolutions" maxes out at 1920x1080, seems MPEG2 and VC-1 can handle HD just fine. Perhaps you were thinking of UHD?

    Scott
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  9. OK, did I quick test. The only spec difference that I can see between the H.264 and H.265 video is the bitrate which came in at 35 Mbps. The bit depth, colorspace, and chroma subsampling are the same. The phone even wrapped the HEVC in an MP4 container. But sadly none of my NLE's can read it while at least the H.264 4K variant can be read.

    So here is another question. Does H.265 really offer the same visual quality at only half the bitrate of H.264? Seems like a stretch to me. But I am not very familiar with HEVC just yet.

    If you are constrained by storage space then I can understand the desire to choose H.265 over H.264. But ceteris paribus, I think H.264 is the way to go if for none reason than wide NLE support.
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    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    Does H.265 really offer the same visual quality at only half the bitrate of H.264?
    Impossible to claim that in general. There is a range of quality an encoder could preserve at a specific bitrate, depending on the efforts trying to find similarities in the video to encode efficiently. With littlest efforts in fastest presets, it will probably lose more quality at the same bitrate than with a lot of efforts in slowest presets. Vice versa, that means that for a similar quantization an encoder may spare more bitrate with slower presets than with faster presets. So ... and against which H.264 encoder options do you want to compare which H.265 encoder options? Fastest H.264 against slowest H.265? Or vice versa? And furthermore, it depends on the video material how much more efficient H.265 can be in comparison to H.264 without noticing a difference in the quality loss.

    AVC (H.264) and HEVC (H.265) differ a lot in their algorithms. They reduce the video in different ways. When they compress with some quality loss, they will lose different kinds of quality, which may feel more or less convenient to you. Therefore it will not be easy to compare a "same quality level", except for visual transparency: When you won't notice a difference between original and compressed video.
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  11. Thanks, LigH.de.

    One thing I neglected to mention was the frame rate. Can we just agree that VFR on phones is no different than dropping frames? It looks like the minimum frame rate for the H.265 video was lower than the H.264 video. Thus H.265 "drops" more frames.
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  12. Dinosaur Supervisor KarMa's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    I think H.264 is the way to go if for none reason than wide NLE support.
    I have no problem with it in avisynth. Just depends on the decoder.
    Last edited by KarMa; 23rd Jun 2016 at 08:46.
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  13. Avisynth is a great. Don't get me wrong. It is an integral part of my workflows for frameserving, for downscaling to Bluray and DVD, and especially for de-interlacing with QTGMC. But with the rise of 4K, 10-bit, and BT.2020, it is really showing its age. Plus, as an NLE, it is woefully inadequate.
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    The more complex the video and the bigger the dimensions, the more time consuming a recoding will be. And AviSynth may be as flexible as you can wish, but in general, it will decode everything, there is no "smart rendering" inside AviSynth (if at all, maybe in the calling application). That may be an advantage of other video editors. Unfortunately, the GOP format of AVC was already a lot more complex than all previous formats (e.g. allowing references across Intra frames which are not IRD frames), limiting the freedom of cut points a lot, and HEVC doesn't reduce the GOP complexity either. Recoding parts of GOPs will be necessary for an efficient video editor supporting these modern video formats.
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    $$$$$$ for 4k, $$ for blu-ray. Your choice.
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  16. Member racer-x's Avatar
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    Aviutl can edit 4K HEVC just fine if you have a fast enough CPU and lots or RAM.
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  17. Dinosaur Supervisor KarMa's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    Avisynth is a great. Don't get me wrong. It is an integral part of my workflows for frameserving, for downscaling to Bluray and DVD, and especially for de-interlacing with QTGMC. But with the rise of 4K, 10-bit, and BT.2020, it is really showing its age.
    Your phone can't even do constant frame rates so not sure why you are bringing this up. As far as 10-bit and higher, it does support it indirectly.

    http://avisynth.nl/index.php/High_bit-depth_Support_with_Avisynth

    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    Plus, as an NLE, it is woefully inadequate.
    It might not be easy, sleek, and built for the average person. But it's not inadequate.
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  18. The lowest frame rate I have seen for my 4K H.264 video is around 29.4 fps. For all intensive purposes, even for NLE use, it is CFR. I have stopped worrying about trying to transcode it first (call me Dr. Strangelove).

    Mediainfo reported a minimum fps of around 7 for the H.265 video. That one fact alone has steered me away from H.265. Seems my phone "drops" more frames. No surprise, I guess, given the strain on resources that HEVC imposes.

    P.S. I get it. Implying that there are better NLE's than Avisynth is a bannable offense on this forum.
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  19. Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    Mediainfo reported a minimum fps of around 7 for the H.265 video. That one fact alone has steered me away from H.265. Seems my phone "drops" more frames. No surprise, I guess, given the strain on resources that HEVC imposes
    Sounds more like you should stop relying on MediaInfo. I don't know much about MP4s created by smartphones but MediaInfo is known to report variable frame rate for some constant frame rate MP4s. Especially those created by Handbrake due to the timebase it uses and the resulting jitter.
    I don't think it checks the whole stream and a minimum of 7fps could be for the first couple of frames alone. Are frames being dropped due to a strain on resources or simply because they're not required? Is playback smooth or juddery? Did the h264 video "drop" less frames because it's easier on resources or because there was more motion?

    Maybe try opening the video with Avisynth and ffms2 or LSmash and note the total number of frames. Then add ffms2 or LSmash's frame rate conversion to decode at a constant frame rate (duplicating frames as required). You'd probably want to convert to 29.970. If the total frame count changes dramatically as a result, then maybe the frame rate is quite variable, but it mightn't change by much at all. At least you'll know, rather than assuming.
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    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    P.S. I get it. Implying that there are better NLE's than Avisynth is a bannable offense on this forum.
    Not "per se". Just different points of view which feature is rated how good. Technically, AviSynth is very able to do about anything you might need. Just using a scripting language to achieve your goals is not considered user-friendly by every user (even more so for VapourSynth which is a real Python extension). There may be NLE's which are more user friendly and about as effective; but not all of them are affordable to the average home user.
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    Originally Posted by LigH.de View Post
    ......

    VapourSynth which is a real Python extension
    Didn't you mean "a real PITA extension"?
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    Certainly not. It seems to be suitable to be generated by a GUI and base the filtering on, as shown e.g. in StaxRip x64. So you already have at least one GUI to hide the scripting from the user.
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  23. Member PuzZLeR's Avatar
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    Since my experience with the "DivX/Xvid vs H.264" days, and even further back with the "MPEG-2 vs DivX/Xvid/MPEG-4 SP/ASP" era, I've adopted a simple concept since, which I extend to the current "H.264 vs H.265" song and dance.

    It really doesn't matter.

    Use what works best for your workflow, or whatever equipment/device YOU want playback on, etc, for NOW, and keep the Source for if/when things change.

    You decide if you're bitrate centered, or what device you want playback on, or if you are concerned with price, processing, battery life, or want simplicity, etc, and go with that. Everybody will be different regarding this, so I doubt this thread will give you a solution, which is why I purposely capped the "YOU" and the "NOW".

    Again, as long as you keep the Source, you do what's best for YOU, NOW, and you will always have the highest quality options for the future.

    This is how I've (honestly) kept my sanity over the years.

    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    Plus, as an NLE [AviSynth], it is woefully inadequate.
    Yes AviSynth is awkward, even for the experienced user, but that's what makes it so productive, and certainly not inadequate, when it's so flexible.

    However, if you get adept with AvsPmod, you will be much closer to an AviSynth NLE type of setup than you think.
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  24. Hmm, if Avisynth is such a versatile tool, can someone please tell me how to convert RGB24 to 10-bit Y'CbCr 4:2:2 in Rec.709 using Avisynth?
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    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    Hmm, if Avisynth is such a versatile tool, can someone please tell me how to convert RGB24 to 10-bit Y'CbCr 4:2:2 in Rec.709 using Avisynth?
    I personally don't work with such conversions (currently), so hopefully someone has a better answer, but much depends on the program you feed scripts to. This is more a function of the calling program - as long as it accepts AviSynth scripts, you're there.

    For example, you can do similar (although not exactly that) in VirtualDub. Again, hopefully someone who works with certain other NLEs, encoders, etc, that I don't work with may have a better path here.
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    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    Hmm, if Avisynth is such a versatile tool, can someone please tell me how to convert RGB24 to 10-bit Y'CbCr 4:2:2 in Rec.709 using Avisynth?
    How about:

    Code:
    ConvertBackToYUY2(matrix="Rec709")
    Example:
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  27. Thanks, but I am searching for a 10-bit workflow/conversion. I am well aware of the 8-bit workflows/conversions (see my lossless workflows thread).
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  28. Dinosaur Supervisor KarMa's Avatar
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    Seems like L-SMASH can be used to import 10-bit or a patched version of FFMS2, as stated in the link from post #17.
    Last edited by KarMa; 24th Jun 2016 at 22:22.
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  29. Member racer-x's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SameSelf View Post
    Thanks, but I am searching for a 10-bit workflow/conversion. I am well aware of the 8-bit workflows/conversions (see my lossless workflows thread).
    OK, here ya go.......

    *edit..I forgot about YUY2. What format will support all those requirements?
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    Last edited by racer-x; 26th Jun 2016 at 18:39.
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  30. The avisynth filter Dither, should be able to convert RGB24 to 10bit YUV (if configured properly), see:
    http://avisynth.nl/index.php/Dither_tools#Dither_convert_rgb_to_yuv
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