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What is MPEG-4?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Advantages? New features? What it does for me?

- Pook
In a fast German car I'm amazed that I survived. An airbag saved my life. - Radiohead
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In a fast German car I'm amazed that I survived. An airbag saved my life. - Radiohead
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post #2 of 16
divx
post #3 of 16
[quote]Originally posted by Fran441:
<strong>divx</strong><hr></blockquote>

I am fairly certain you are incorrect.

From MacRumors.com:

Note: MPEG-4 is not the same as Divx - the popular video compression codec on the net... however, many users are hoping that Quicktime Live will bring a long awaited update to Quicktime to allow it to properly read AVI's created with this codec.


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RosettaStoned
post #4 of 16
Yes, he is incorrect. MPEG-4 is NOT DivX.

<a href="http://www.cselt.it/mpeg/standards/mpeg-4/mpeg-4.htm" target="_blank">http://www.cselt.it/mpeg/standards/mpeg-4/mpeg-4.htm</a>
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post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
... and why is this so exciting?
In a fast German car I'm amazed that I survived. An airbag saved my life. - Radiohead
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In a fast German car I'm amazed that I survived. An airbag saved my life. - Radiohead
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post #6 of 16
This is so exciting because MPEG-4 is supposed to bring better quality and smaller file sizes than even DIVX does. Also, being a part of Quicktime means it won't suck on the Mac either
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post #7 of 16
the newest divx is based on MPEG4, but has its differences (some would say enhancements, but since we've never seen a true implementation of MPEG4, who knows?..)

however, most divx files on the internet are encoded with the old divx.. this is a completely different codec, and actually simply a hack of a proprietary microsoft codec. for this to work correctly in quicktime, quicktime needs to be changed to be able to read avi's the same way Windows media players read them.

my point is, MPEG4 and the ability to watch divx files on your mac are two very different things. we will be seeing MPEG4 tomorrow.. it'd be great to see them change quicktime to be able to play divx files too, but i doubt they'll do it. apple would much rather people use their own MPEG4 codec, than use divx (a competitor's product). if apple's product can encode faster than divx, divx should die very soon. i can't wait!
post #8 of 16
I can hardly wait for the mp3 fix for the DivX files!! The thought of just opening a DivX file without any doctoring is very nice.

QT 5.1/6 tomorrow! yay!
post #9 of 16
Apple isn't exactly averse to supporting a few other formats in QuickTime. They support close to 50 I think now. I would hope/imagine that QT will support dixv in some form soon. I haven't really come across too much of this stuff, and frankly, I avoid any file that ends in ".avi" because it means too many things, and nothing in the end. Too much trouble on my part, even on my PC, to keep track of all those damn codecs under the same extension. (whatever a codec is, like I'm supposed to remember).
post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 
So it's better quality in a smaller file size?
In a fast German car I'm amazed that I survived. An airbag saved my life. - Radiohead
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In a fast German car I'm amazed that I survived. An airbag saved my life. - Radiohead
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post #11 of 16
[quote]Originally posted by PookJP:
<strong>So it's better quality in a smaller file size?</strong><hr></blockquote>


Kinda like Lil' Kim. :eek:


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RosettaStoned
post #12 of 16
I've heard the audio tracks are smaller than .mp3s and better quality than .mp3s....if so thats awesome
also the Video is supposedly really good quality, and doesn't take up much space...all good stuff
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orange you just glad?
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post #13 of 16
Basically, MPEG-4 is designed for web-content and other low/mid bitrate output. I believe MPEG-7 is the next evolution of MPEG's high bitrate standard.

DivX is was a hack to bring whatever codec MS Windows Media Player was using to the .avi file format. Allegedly, MS's codec borrowed heavily from the then incomplete MPEG-4 standard.

[ 02-12-2002: Message edited by: Eugene ]</p>
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post #14 of 16
[quote]Originally posted by PookJP:
<strong>Advantages? New features? What it does for me?

- Pook</strong><hr></blockquote>

MPEG-4 is a standard protocol encompassing media presented in various ways (streaming, off CDs, HDs, etc.). It seems that it wil have better quality at lower bit rates for both sound and video. This is not guareteed though. My understanding (limited) is that when they say that MPEG-4 has adopted QT it means that MPEG-4 can behave as a container accomodating many codecs. Some of those codecs may be optimized for things other than low bit rate.

What it does for you is two things. First, it is a standard (as opposed to Divx which is a hack). This means there are agreed upon definitions for what an MPEG-4 file should look like. There is also a concerted effort to test interoperability of codecs and files. This means that an MPEG-4 file encoded on an SGI system (for example) should play back on OS X if QT has the correct codec. Just as a CD with the "CD Disk" logo on it should play in any player with the same logo.

The second thing it does for you is that it seems that the vast majority of providers are opting to work with MPEG-4 so that this will be a viable format for years to come. This is a big deal. This means that interactive video of all sorts will be cast in MPEG-4. Assuming they pull this off it will be a huge change for the presentation of video for years to come.

I think this is part of the reason it is coming out so slowly (apparently). It is not just a clever idea for a new codec but a complex new standard that many different parties have to agree to.
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post #15 of 16
I am a little unclear on 2 things:

How does someone import/convert movies to divx or MPEG-4 on a Mac from a DVD, .mov or whatever?

And if MPEG-4 is better than divx, why was divx ever made? Since people are saying divx is a hack of MPEG-4...
post #16 of 16
[quote]Originally posted by eVo:
<strong>I am a little unclear on 2 things:

How does someone import/convert movies to divx or MPEG-4 on a Mac from a DVD, .mov or whatever?

And if MPEG-4 is better than divx, why was divx ever made? Since people are saying divx is a hack of MPEG-4...</strong><hr></blockquote>

1.) to convert a DVD you need special "hacking" software most notably DVD Extractor. then you need to compress it using QT with one of the codecs.

2.) $$$ MPEG 4 has royalty fees which is the reason Apple hasn't released it yet. MPEG 4 was also not complete whenn Divx was created
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