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  1. When you encode to MPEG2/MP4 what codec is used? Is it the codec on the computer or the one built into the encoder?

    Are there good codecs/encoders as opposed to bad ones?
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  2. Member DB83's Avatar
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    MP4 is not a codec but a container format that can container different codecs.

    No encoder contains a codec. They only use what you have already installed on your computer.

    As to what is 'good' or 'bad' one would need to be more specific as to what codec you wish to encode since mileage amongst codecs does vary.
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  3. Video Restorer lordsmurf's Avatar
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    MPEG-2 is both codec and format.
    MP4 is not a format, but a wrapper/container.

    Also, MP4 is not necessarily MPEG-4.
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    Most free encoders (Staxrip, MeGui, Handbrake, etc,etc.) use x264.exe (included in their packages) to encode to H.264/AVC in mp4 or MKV files

    Similarly, free DVD (mpeg-2) encoders these days, use HCenc or FFmpeg.

    Of course, there are also paid options, like MainConcept TotalCode that have their own proprietary software
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  5. [QUOTE=DB83;2571545]
    No encoder contains a codec. They only use what you have already installed on your computer.
    /QUOTE]

    There is so much wrong in this one line it's hard to know where to begin.

    Codec literally stands for COmpressor/DECompressor, an encoder would be just the first part or CO and a decoder is the second part or DEC.

    I will leave the rest to someone else.
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  6. Originally Posted by akkers View Post
    When you encode to MPEG2/MP4 what codec is used? Is it the codec on the computer or the one built into the encoder?

    Are there good codecs/encoders as opposed to bad ones?
    There are many software encoders made by many from Microsoft (mpeg-2) to videolan x.264 to others.

    ...

    There are also hardware encoders, the primary home ones from Intel (Quicksync), Nvidia, and AMD.


    https://www.intel.com/content/dam/www/public/us/en/documents/white-papers/cloud-comput...hite-paper.pdf

    ...

    Quality of encodes depends on many factors beyond simply bitrate and 2 pass slow encode settings.

    Scenarist $$$$, which is used for commercial disc mastering, uses ATEME $$$$ to encode. At that level, you can assign bits scene by scene to optimize an encode, but this can take days for a single movie. Obviously, a home user isn't going to want to do this for home videos, so hardware accelerated options like Intel Quicksync have become very popular (really fast - 200+ frames per second encodes that take minutes per movie vs hours for software).

    ...

    There are always deep discussions here and on doom9 websites going over which are "better". Maybe it's tmpgenc for one, mainconcept for another, etc.

    In general, using those two or handbrake (x.264), with the slowest default settings available in 2-pass mode will get the best for any FIXED bitrate or file size you assign.

    But note, even with the worst encoders, simply giving it a higher bitrate quickly produces a better encode.

    https://www.streamingmedia.com/Articles/Editorial/Featured-Articles/Hardware-Based-Tra...tors_selection

    ...

    Generally today, most videos encoded to mp4 in handbrake on the default optimized setting usually does a very good job. If you use Quicksync in handbrake, quality of 15-18 usually produces a very good job without much adjustment (I'd also say, level 5.2, high, quality).

    Mpeg-2 if encoded to a dvd average max of about 9MB/sec is never going to look that amazing. Starved for bits, which is why DV tapes use higher bitrates (and even then, not amazing, just better). The mpeg-2 codec is ancient, so mp4 h.264 or h.265 are far better choices today.

    H.265 is the latest, even better image quality at the same bitrate ss h.264, but kills older systems because it needs so much computing power. Today, any Intel cpu with h.265 encode support or nvidia 1050ti or better can accelerate this well enough that you can encode to h.265 all the time without much wait. (One BIG reason Intel cpus still dominate in the video editing field - super fast renders/encodes vs amd when using Quicksync.)

    ....

    Feel free to test - for mpeg-2, you'll need to test encoders and your videos because it's sensitive to variations to find the best one. (Start with the big ones like mainconcept (stand alone or in a video editor like Vegas Video), Adobe Media Encoder, tmpgenc.) If those can't get you a good encode, switch to mp4 or increase bit rate.

    ...for mp4, abobe media encoder, handbrake can usually give you great results as long as you give it enough bits (abode) or slide the quality setting up from 20 towards the upper range like 15-18.
    If not, you'll need to tweak settings for the encoder (tons of advice out their), or even switch to h.265.

    ...

    What's your input video format/source and what are you outputting to/for?
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  7. Member DB83's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=sophisticles;2571554]
    Originally Posted by DB83 View Post
    No encoder contains a codec. They only use what you have already installed on your computer.
    /QUOTE]

    There is so much wrong in this one line it's hard to know where to begin.

    Codec literally stands for COmpressor/DECompressor, an encoder would be just the first part or CO and a decoder is the second part or DEC.

    I will leave the rest to someone else.
    Maybe you should re-read the OP's question.

    My reply referred to the literal of what is used to 'encode' as did subsequent respondents. Now if a codec - and I do know what it stands for - can 'encode' without the use of software then I shall withdraw my comments.
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