Should I capture my tapes with or without compression?

Long story short, we recommend importing using the compression option. This results in a much smaller file size and the quality is great!

If you would like some more technical information feel free to read the following:

Before your import, LifeFlix provides a dialog box that allows you to use our default MP4 compression or to import using no compression and leaving it in its original DV source format.  Both options use the QuickTime .mov "wrapper" technology that allows you to play the videos with QuickTime.  Or both files will have the file name, "".

Here is a comparison of a compressed and uncompressed file to help you make the decision.  Our recommendation is to allow compression as it creates a much smaller file, deinterlaces the video, and is easier to upload to YouTube. Because MP4 compression is so good, most people cannot tell the difference.

Download these examples and play them next to each other. These examples are NTSC, but this applies to PAL also.

Compressed (MP4) Download example (1.3MB)

The data rate for compressed is 3.3 mbps, frame rate is 29.97 (same as original), and resolution is 640x480 (also same as original). As with uncompressed, it is also using a .mov QuickTime wrapper, but we reduce the file size using the QuickTime H.264 codec or MP4 for compression. This option also deinterlaces the video. 

  • Resolution:  640x480
  • 60 minutes requires (roughly) 1.3GB of hard disc space
  • File format is MP4 / MPEG-4 / H.264
  • Video is deinterlaced
  • Quicktime .mov wrapper added
  • Audio is compressed using AAC
  • Date rate is 3.3 Mbps
  • MP4 uploads to YouTube the fastest

No Compression (DV Format) Download example (12.7MB)

We are merely transcoding the original DV file, which does not change the format. It does not compress the original video, it only adds a .mov QuickTime wrapper to it. Choosing uncompressed also retains original resolution (640x480) and frame rate. Deinterlacing is not done with this option.

  • Resolution:  640x480
  • 60 minutes requires (roughly) 13GB of disc space
  • File format is DV
  • No deinterlacing
  • Quicktime .mov wrapper added
  • Audio is not touched remains 16-bit linear PCM
  • Date rate is 25 Mbps 
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