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The Ultimate Guide to Lossless Video Compression

Lossless Video Compression

Introduction to Lossless Video Compression

Compression is a technique used to make files smaller, without changing their basic characteristics. Compression allows the files to be downloaded at a faster rate and also there is a reduced storage space requirement for these compressed files.An example of compression can be easily understood with a small comparison between raw formats (of a video) vs. the JPEG format. Though the original image might be as large as 10-20 MB, the compressed file in the form of a JPEG file might be available at the much lower size.

Raw format is always a lossless format as it retains all the original characteristics and a JPEG format (as exampled as above) is a lossy format.

There is more software available for lossy and lossless compressions of images & audio and when it comes to video compression there is a lot more discussion on the adaptability of video compression.

Given below are comparative examples of lossy and lossless formats for different formats:

Images:

RAW, BMP, PNG are lossless formats whereas JPEG & GIF are lossy formats.

Audio:

WAV, FLAC & ALAC are lossless formats whereas MP3, MP4 & OGG are lossy formats.

Video:

FFV1, ProRes, Huffyuv are lossless formats whereas H.264, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, MPEG-1, VC-1 & Dirac are lossless video formats.

While it is a good practice to convert from lossless formats to lossless formats, it is not advised to convert a) lossy format to another lossy format or b) lossy format to lossless format.

As such, great care has to be exercised before going for conversion – when to use and when not to use.

Real-Time Lossless Video Compression

Real-time video compression is a typical problem and needed a lot of research activity.

There were attempts to integrate digital video images.  However, the problem was with the bandwidth speed.

For example, an image of 320×240 pixels playing on an RGB video screen at 30fps speed required storage and transmission of 6.9 Mbps and that was the limitation factor.

After a lot of research, many digital video compression algorithms could be developed and successfully implemented.

Now the marketer is having a lot of videos promoting his products, he might be interested in going for compression of his videos but the question is whether he is able to do so in real time. The answer is simple ‘yes’. For example, the JPEG still picture compression standard is simple standard to implement and is able to get 10:1 to 15:1 compression ratios.

Lossless Video Compression Software

Once there is an opportunity for the marketer to compress his videos, he is quite but naturally interested to know the brief list of software that is available in this regard.

Compression of the video is a tricky issue as discussed above and hence proper care has to be taken while downloading the video compression software.

The best converter can be decided based on factors such as supported OS, acceptable input source, available audio video parameter setting, supported output file format and its quality.

Usability & stability, video compression speed, help & support all play important roles in deciding which the best video compressor software is. One tool that comes handy is WinXHD Video converter deluxe.

Lossless Video Compression Trends

Coming to trends in video compression, we need to understand different formats for digital video. NTSC, PAL & HDTV. NTSC operating at 720×480 is further classified as SIF (352×240) & DVD (720×420 or 720×576).

Similarly, PAL operating at 720×576 is further classified as CIF (352X288) & QCIF (176×144). HDTV is operating at 1920×1080 or 1280×720 pixels. The future is UHDTV (ultra-high definition TV).

Videos built for this format has a maximum resolution of 7680×4320 i.e., 32million pixels (with a frequency up to 120 fps. One minute of noncompressed UHDTV would need nearly 195 GB of storage and this naturally requires compression as the sole solution.

The various techniques available for video compression include:

1) JPEG

2) Motion JPEG

3) JPEG 2000

4) Motion JPEG 2000

5) H.261/H.263

6) MPEG-1

7) MPEG-2

8) MPEG-3

9) MPEG-4

10) H.264

11) MPEG-7

12) MPEG-21

Each of the above trend/technology comes with its own advantages, advancements, as well as limitations and hence the marketer, has to ensure that proper video compression technique is adopted for the grand success of his video ad campaign.

Conclusion:

Each format of the file has different compression techniques to maintain the quality of the video under any circumstances.

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