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Recording MPEG4 Video

Does anyone know any programs that can record video in MPEG4 format?  Or anything that can convert a Divx AVI file into pure MPEG4?  I have a bunch of things I've recorded in Divx, but I'm afraid of them not being playable on future devices.
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Crash2100
Asked:
Crash2100
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1 Solution
 
shamstarCommented:
Im not aware of anything that can covert DivX to MPEG4 directly (maybe Quicktime Pro), but you can covert to MPEG2 which is sure to be around for a few years using TMPGEnc (http://www.tmpgenc.net/), this article explains it all in steps for you: http://www.divx-digest.com/articles/avi2mpeg1.html
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Crash2100Author Commented:
If I can't convert it directly, how can I encode my new video into MPEG4?
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weedCommented:
QuickTime Pro. And itll do the conversion from DivX as well as long as you have a DivX codec installed and the folks who encoded the DivX didn't do something silly like use WMA, or improperly encoded MP3 for the audio.
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nicholassolutionsCommented:
The tool you need is VirtualDub. It is a very popular video editing and conversion tool, and it's free ;)

The homepage for the software is here:
http://www.virtualdub.org/

You can downlaod it here:
 http://prdownloads.sourceforge.net/virtualdub/VirtualDub-1.6.0.zip?download

No installation is necessary, just download the zip file and unzip it. Once you have, open virtualdub.exe. The follow these steps:
   1. In the File menu, select "Open video file..." and choose  a DivX file you want to work with.
   2. In the Video menu, select "Compression" this will bring up a list of codecs available on your machine. Choose the MPEG4 codec you want to use. You can press "Configure" to tinker with the compression settings. When you are done, press OK.
   3. In the File menu, select "Save as AVI..." A dialogue box will open. For the file type, select "All Files" and then name the file whatever you want, adding a "mpg" or "mpeg" extension at the end. Press Save.

Once you finish step 3, the conversion will start. You can speed things up a little by unchecking the "preview" boxes on the window that pops up (the downside is that you will not be able to see where in your video you are, but there is a progress bar that shows how far along the conversion is).


A similar process is documented on the site below with pictures of each step:
http://www.indezine.com/products/video/virtualdub.html

I just tried this and it worked fine for me. Good luck!
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spiderfixCommented:
MPEG4 Direct Maker $49.95 if you want MP4 specifically (MP4 = Quicktime format)
http://www.artech365.com

VirtualDub or TMPGenc will compress videos with selction of codecs and they are both free.

TMPGenc
http://www.tmpgenc.net/e_main.html
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Crash2100Author Commented:
I got QuickTime pro the other day and it works fine for the most part.  But for some reason it doesn't like the MP3 audio tracks my divx files have.  But if I convert the audio back to plain WAV audio, it works fine.

How do I use TMPGenc or VirtualDub to compress it into MPEG4?  How do I get a MPEG4 codec to use in there?
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weedCommented:
That's because the DivX files were improperly encoded. If you use 3ivX codecs instead, or use DivX Doctor II to adjust the mp3 track you can fix the problem. Something about DivX not liking having an MP3 track as the first track in the stream.
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spiderfixCommented:
For TMPGenc it's in the menu
File
Output to file
AVI file
Setting(button) for Video
Compression(popdown menu)

You can get more codecs from M$
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=9be479f8-3b3f-491d-9284-2e1a8fae4584&displaylang=en

and here
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/format/codecdownload.aspx
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weedCommented:
Dont use the MSMPEG-4 codecs. Theyre not true MPEG-4. Anything as an AVI isn't true MPEG-4.
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Crash2100Author Commented:
I just downloaded the WM9Codecs and installed it, but I can't find them in the codec list.  Do you know what they're called?

Also, what kind of audio compression am I supposed to use when I compress something into MPEG4?  Just plain PCM audio?
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Crash2100Author Commented:
weed:  I had a feeling about that.  But it also included an "ISO MPEG-4 version 1 and 1.1" codec.  Is that a standard one?
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weedCommented:
If youre using WM9 codecs youre not encoding as MPEG-4.
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weedCommented:
If it says ISO, it SHOULD be ok. Just make sure it saves as a MP4, and not AVI, or WMV. If it's not ISO compliant, the first thing that they screw up on is encoding to some wacky format.

As for the audio, it could be anything you like. MP3, AAC (great choice), or ALC (loss-less choice). For distribution MP3 is the most compliant but AAC and ALC works for anyone using QuickTime to view it, which most folks should be using.
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spiderfixCommented:
>>I just downloaded the WM9Codecs and installed it, but I can't find
>>them in the codec list.  Do you know what they're called?
You have to reboot.

>>Just plain PCM audio<<
Yes

If it's just playability (without "odd" codecs like DivX) you want then on a Windows
machine *.asf and *.wmv will be the smallest file sizes (good compression).

ASFTools will convert clips
http://www.geocities.com/myasftools/
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weedCommented:
If it's playability you want, dont use MS codecs including WMV or ASF. That will eliminate anyone on any platform other than windows which is just wrong. Your quality can be just as good using a standard encoding method, and you can distribute it to more folks with a more diverse set of players. It'll also enable you to do more with the video once it's encoded. Anyone who's ever tried to edit an ASF or WMV will tell you that it's near impossible.
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Crash2100Author Commented:
I found if I use Virtual Dub to convert the MP3 audio in my divx files into 44khz PCM audio, QuickTime plays it just fine.  But when I use QuickTime to export the file into MPEG4, the video is very dark, I don't understand why, and I can find anything to adjust that would make it better.  I have tried setting the bitrate as high as it will go, but it is still dark.
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weedCommented:
Use the filters built into quicktime when exporting to adjust the brightness values.
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Crash2100Author Commented:
where are the filters?
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weedCommented:
When you export, hit Options, then Filter.
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Crash2100Author Commented:
Sorry for the delay, I've been really busy.

I guess until MPEG4 technology gets more wide spread in video apps, I'm going to have to stick with using VirtualDub to edit the video, then use QuickTime Pro to convert it to MPEG4.

Thanks for all the help!
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