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Old 2006-03-19, 10:54   Link #1
Ronbo
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Why Use H.264?

Iím rather curious as to why some Anime fan sub groups are switching over to h.264 encoding only?
To date I have not seen any real advantage to this format, however forums (Sourceforge and Doom9 are excellent examples) are full of people desperately seeking a way to convert these files into something useable!

If H.264 is so great, why do so many people have the need to convert it?

Personally, I feel that any fan-sub group that uses H.264 encoding should also release their fan-subs in a format that does not need re-encoding just to be usable!
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Old 2006-03-19, 11:08   Link #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronbo
If H.264 is so great, why do so many people have the need to convert it?
Because they have computers that can't decode h.264 smoothly? Any PC that wasn't bargain bin stuff 4 years ago can handle it, but some people still run on stone age equipment, which in turn can't really be helped

Last edited by Cruzz; 2006-03-19 at 11:26.
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Old 2006-03-19, 11:16   Link #3
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Actually, most people begging for quick conversions are people who can't get it to run, most likely because they are using a stock WMP or something. There's no point in reencoding it. HD h264 releases might take some processing power(not as much as people bitch about though) but SD encodes are very managable. Even my old p3 could run them without too much trouble.

There's a lot of reasons why it's good. first of all, it's a very efficient codec. Generally you can squeeze a lot of more quality out of a smaller file size compared to other codecs. It's not just raw image quality that you notice too. There's a lot of reduction of motion artifacts, blocking, ringing, etc compared to equivalent sized divx or wmv9 encodes.
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Old 2006-03-19, 13:23   Link #4
Jekyll
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Different aspects of H.264 have already been discussed in the H.264/AVC/MPEG4 discussion thread and its precursor.

Quote:
To date I have not seen any real advantage to this format
With H.264 instead of MPEG4-ASP codecs you can gain a higher quality at the same filesize, lower filesize at the same quality or even both at the same time.
Higher quality is always a nice thing, I'd think. Lower filesizes make it easier for groups to distribute their files, are better for people with limited bandwidth and of course save HD space.

Quote:
If H.264 is so great, why do so many people have the need to convert it?
Maybe they want to watch their stuff on a hardware player.
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Old 2006-03-19, 15:08   Link #5
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http://forums.animesuki.com/showthread.php?t=26498

If you want to discuss H.264, do so in that thread

Doh, beaten to it by Jekyll
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Old 2006-03-20, 00:42   Link #6
NoSanninWa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero1
http://forums.animesuki.com/showthread.php?t=26498

If you want to discuss H.264, do so in that thread

Doh, beaten to it by Jekyll
While that is an excellent thread, it is intended for a discussion of h264 which goes well beyond the simple question that is asked by this thread. If you actually want to discuss h264 in detail, please do so there, but I'm going to leave this thread intact to explain the matters to newbies who aren't up to the technical demands of reading that other thread.
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Old 2006-03-20, 02:15   Link #7
Tiberium Wolf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cruzz
Because they have computers that can't decode h.264 smoothly? Any PC that wasn't bargain bin stuff 4 years ago can handle it, but some people still run on stone age equipment, which in turn can't really be helped

Define "stone age equipment"! Give specific specs! I want to know!
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Old 2006-03-20, 02:31   Link #8
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Because it sounds cooler than "DivX" or "XviD" or "WMV9".
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Old 2006-03-20, 02:55   Link #9
TougeSil80
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Compared to Xvid, how much more efficient is the h.264 codec, and what's the minimal hardware that can run it smoothly? Thanks.
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Old 2006-03-20, 03:33   Link #10
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@Rondo, the honest truth is some people don't like the $hit (or the change) as much as others and would rather convert it then have to change the comfort-level of their codec packages or circumvent in some other way to watch their favorite shows...


Yes I do like DivX and the subsequent Film Effect, but i do acknowledge that on lower-sized really crappy looking fansubs h264 can be a bonus, but for DVD-rips and higher-sized fansubs with already good quality I find it to be marginal at best and not worth the problems that exists with certain encodes...Everyone's entitled to their veiw though...

I really am happy that alot of the places I go have chosen to make 2 versions because they understand that alot of their fanbase perfers a DivX version aswell...
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Last edited by wingdarkness; 2006-03-20 at 08:40.
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Old 2006-03-20, 03:35   Link #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiberium Wolf
Define "stone age equipment"! Give specific specs! I want to know!
CPUs of 1.0 GHz are fine. If your system is less than that you have a chance of running into trouble, though the specifics of exactly how much power seem to vary by user. Some people claim that their 900 MHz system can't handle it, while I've heard another claim that he can run almost all h264 encodes on his 400 MHZ system.
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Old 2006-03-20, 03:49   Link #12
Kamui4356
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoSanninWa
I've heard another claim that he can run almost all h264 encodes on his 400 MHZ system.
If true, I'd be curious as to how. For fun, I've tried running h.264 encodes on my brother's computer, a 450ish mhz amd k6. I was able to get it running, but not in a way I'd call watchable. Well, unless one likes watching slide shows narrated in Japanese. Of course, the lack of processor speed on my brother's computer is compounded by the lack of ram (96 MB) and video card (16 MB).
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Old 2006-03-20, 03:55   Link #13
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Unfortunately that post was lost in the forum hack and I don't remember who it was off-hand, but there are obviously a few possibilities for how this feat was managed:
  • Decent RAM
  • Better video card than your brother has
  • He removed all unessential programs from start up
  • He was lying about it
The solution might be one or more of the above.
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Old 2006-03-20, 03:57   Link #14
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Problem with x264 codec is that it disappoints. You had encoders going "oh, we'll keep the current quality and lower filesize." This is not the case by many groups. They just like to keep the same filesize for "better" quality. But let's be honest: only an incompetent encoder can't keep TV-rip quality on the same level in a similar manner with xvid as he is doing now with x264. TV rips really aren't that great, so of course nobody notices the difference.
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Old 2006-03-20, 04:09   Link #15
Kamui4356
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoSanninWa
Unfortunately that post was lost in the forum hack and I don't remember who it was off-hand, but there are obviously a few possibilities for how this feat was managed:
  • Decent RAM
  • Better video card than your brother has
  • He removed all unessential programs from start up
  • He was lying about it
The solution might be one or more of the above.
Too bad it was lost... Oh well, at least it gives me new hope that it might be possible to run h.264 on such a weak system.
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Old 2006-03-20, 04:49   Link #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kamui4356
If true, I'd be curious as to how. For fun, I've tried running h.264 encodes on my brother's computer, a 450ish mhz amd k6. I was able to get it running, but not in a way I'd call watchable. Well, unless one likes watching slide shows narrated in Japanese. Of course, the lack of processor speed on my brother's computer is compounded by the lack of ram (96 MB) and video card (16 MB).
What decoder are you using?
ffdshow? coreavc?
and dont use windows media player/winamp (whatever version) because it sucks

well another choice is mplayer, afaik its the second fastest of h264 decoder(plus some switches that will increase decoding performance with lower playback quality).

And i dont think video card will increase decoding preformance unless you are using the high-end ATI/nVidia video card plus the dshow decoder you use are supporting DXVA hardware acceleration.
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Old 2006-03-20, 04:49   Link #17
Tiberium Wolf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoSanninWa
CPUs of 1.0 GHz are fine. If your system is less than that you have a chance of running into trouble, though the specifics of exactly how much power seem to vary by user. Some people claim that their 900 MHz system can't handle it, while I've heard another claim that he can run almost all h264 encodes on his 400 MHZ system.
You didn't tell the video card.

But also it will depend on the definition of the file... the bigger the more resource it will need. For the definition size I think you need more the video card than CPU.
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Old 2006-03-20, 04:50   Link #18
monster
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LytHka
Problem with x264 codec is that it disappoints. You had encoders going "oh, we'll keep the current quality and lower filesize." This is not the case by many groups. They just like to keep the same filesize for "better" quality. But let's be honest: only an incompetent encoder can't keep TV-rip quality on the same level in a similar manner with xvid as he is doing now with x264. TV rips really aren't that great, so of course nobody notices the difference.
Quick question, x264=h.264?

EDIT: Oh, ok, thanks SSS. That article's cleared up some confusion I've had.

Last edited by monster; 2006-03-20 at 05:09.
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Old 2006-03-20, 04:53   Link #19
SSS
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x264 is an opensource h.264 encoder
h.264 is a new video format

EDIT: monstert, you're welcome
Here is the detailed h.264 information:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.264
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Old 2006-03-20, 06:03   Link #20
Kamui4356
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSS
What decoder are you using?
ffdshow? coreavc?
and dont use windows media player/winamp (whatever version) because it sucks

well another choice is mplayer, afaik its the second fastest of h264 decoder(plus some switches that will increase decoding performance with lower playback quality).
I was using ffdshow, not sure which build. My brother didn't have internet access at the time, and I didn't have coreavc with me, so I had to try with that, even though coreavc is faster. Next time I'll try that instead. It'll probably be a while though, I don't usually get a chance to play around with it unless there's a problem.
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