Best Codec for Windows Vista?

Is there a really good video Codec out there that works with Vista + Blender 2.44? I tried DivX awhile back ( and unless it was a older version ) and it didn’t work.

I’m really up to doing the whole “Uncompressed” thing since I can’t load the clips in Windows movie maker or Premiere 4.2 since its over 4 GB!

H.264 (in the FFMPEG options) works better than just about anything else and will render as a ,avi if you don’t choose any of the removable storage options such as VCD, DVD, etc. I can tell you for certain that the default Bitrate value of 6000 will give you excelent results with very little noise for animations at 75% HD (1440 X 810) plus the compressed file size will be much smaller that anything else other than On2VP7. The On2 codec does not install with Blender and is windoze media player only codec. Just be sure that your output size in X and Y dimensions is divisible by 2 or the H.264 codec will fail to initialize and Blender will crash (at least on windozeXP).

NICE! I never knew blender could export DVD ready video, and it looks awesome! (F***ing Tiny too! 800 KB for 5 secs @25fps of 800x600 video. No quality change at all! Thank you very much. )

EDIT: Just a few questions though:

1: What if I double Codec the video? What I mean is, export Clip A and Clip B separately with the MPEG-2 DVD codec that you suggested, and then put them together and re-export them together? Will it loose more quality while being recompressed? Or stay the same since its already been compressed by the same codec?

2: Why does it always say: Cleaning Up. . . Please Wait About 300 frames into the render? It says to free up Memsomething but I cant find it. ( plus I have 1 GB of RAM anyway ) not that thats a big deal, since it still does 2 frames every 10 seconds anyway. (When re-exporting after render)

You never want to re-compress a lossy codec. The net result is always increased file size, longer encoding time, increased noise, and severely decreased quality. Encoding is always the last step in your process when outputting to final. Lossless codecs are fine. I suggest that all your Blender CGI be rendered to OpenExr format with “Half” enabled and the default “ZIP” compression. ZIP. RLE, and PIZ are all lossless but ZIP generally provides the best compression for CGI which is probably why it’s the default. Half type is lossy but it’s nothing that you’ll ever be able to detect visibly so 32 bits per channel is generally overkill for VFX work.

I’m not the best person to comment on this but I can give you this link which details the preferred proces at (a stock video exchange):

I personally convert my still image sequences to QuickTime’s Animation format which is lossless, supports alpha channels and provides a 2:1 to 3:1 compression ratio. I only do that whenever I’m working with CGI and 8 bit effects in Adobe After Effects and I have a fairly lengthy sequence (I have AE 6.0 and it sort of chokes with long sequences).

Actually I suggested the H.264 codec, not MPEG2 which is a complete dog by comparison. I have no idea what it means by Clenaing Up. You did ask about a format for computers, not DVD, right?

If you need audio simply go to the Audio tab and enable the “Multiplex audio” button. MP3 is best for web delivery but other than that I have no idea what the other extensions are for. You can only add .wav sound files in Blender and you have to sync it in the VSE.

I do plan to export this video to a DVD. So I need to use MPEG-2. The quality is hardly affected I noticed. And looks fine. As for Multiplex audio, I’m not sure if I can use MP3 since I’m not sure if DVD’s can handle anything above MP2 audio.

Also, I noticed when I export using the DVD “present” settings, the file is “XXXXX.dvd” for some reason. I simply change the extension to “XXXXX.mpg” and it appears to be fine. Is this alright in the long run though?

Yes. It may play fine without the extension change but I wouldn’t chance it. I changed a .avi to .mov yesterday and it still played fine in WMP.