S**tty video & Camtasia (grrr...)

by Didier Faucher 16 replies
Hello everyone,

I have a problem with Camtasia Studio.

I have an 1.6 MB AVI and a 1.1 MB MP3.
When I combine both in Camtasia Studio (version 4), I get a SWF that is 16.5 MB!!!

I use the following parameters:

* Video:
- Color: 16-Bit
- Frame rate: 5
- JPG compression: 50% (I get approximately the same result with 30%)
- Dimension: 640x366 pixels (original size)

* Audio:
- MP3
- 11.025 kHz, Mono, 16kBits/s

What do I do wrong?
Why this HUGE weight?

I'd be very happy if a better-than-Didier Camtasia user can helps me.

Thank you.

Didier
#main internet marketing discussion forum #camtasia #grrr #stty #video
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  • Profile picture of the author Didier Faucher
    Nobody :confused:
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    • Profile picture of the author ExRat
      Hi Didier,

      I'm learning camtasia and I've literally been reading Camtasia Studio 4 The Definitive Guide - about an hour ago.

      But I don't know the answer.

      I reckon Josh Anderson would know it in a snap.

      And there's a camtasia guru I found on the old forum called 'Lon Naylor' - look for his websites on google - I believe they have lots of free advice on them.

      I presume you know this page (for V5)

      Video Tutorials for Camtasia Studio 5

      I'll have a look in my book to see if I can find the answer as this will help me anyway.

      Edit - Hi again Didier,

      Nah. After 5 minutes reading I can tell you that I can't help you. You need a pro. This stuff will take me a few sittings to digest. Sorry I can't help but I hope someone who can passes by. If it was me, in the meantime I would hammer google looking for others who have faced the same problem.
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      Roger Davis

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      • Profile picture of the author CSwrite
        Didier,

        Are you adding any transitions or effects to the file? That could account for the file size. If not, we'll have to dig deeper, but I thought I would ask. Just one little transition can tack on an extra meg - or more. Add in a few of those and that may be the problem.

        Cary
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        • Profile picture of the author Didier Faucher
          Roger and Cary, thank you for your help !

          @Roger: Today, I spent 5-6 hours searching on the web, but... well... nothing... I haven't found a similar case to mine nor any tutorial that can help me.

          @Cary: No, nothing is added, nor any file edited prior of the SWF production.
          I import the 2 files, drop them into the timeline, then start the production with the parameters indicated above.

          I tried to combine both files with VirtualDub before producing the SWF, got an 5-7 MB AVI, then an 14-20 MB SWF. So it didn't help.

          Really weird. :confused:


          Note:
          The AVI and audio are 5 minutes long.
          The AVI is a video screen capture.
          The MP3 is voice comments (not mine, my english is not good enough; that's why I have 2 separate files).


          Thanks again.

          Didier
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          • Profile picture of the author CSwrite
            Didier,

            Hmmm - ok, try this. Drop your frame rate down to one frame per second. That should shrink it a bit. That was the only other thing I could think of, but I'll keep looking.

            Cary
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            • Profile picture of the author Josh Anderson
              1. Never use camtasia as a video editor. I recommend you use Sony Vegas Movie Studio or Platinum instead. Search youtube for "sony vegas tutorial" and you will pull up a lot to get you rolling if you need help.

              2. Never use camtasia to encode your video. And if you do make sure you are using vp6 to encode the video to flv and set your bit rate as low as possible without sacrificing too much image quality.

              I recommend using Flix 8 Standard ($39) or Flix 8 Pro or Sorenson Squeeze for Flash Pro to encode your master video files instead. This will allow you to get superior compression and quality results using vp6 codec.

              3. Make sure you are not encoding your video at too high a bit rate... if you are using vp6 you can get away with 300kbps or less with screen capture video. I prefer 220kbps or less personally.

              4. Make sure your audio bit rate is set to no more than 32kbps and mono this will significantly reduce your video size.

              5. Reduce the overall frame rate of your video by a 2:1 ratio. For example if you captured at 30fps then reduce it to 15fps. If you captured at 20 reduce it to 10fps. I do not recommend going under 10fps. My own personal preference is actually to capture and publish at 20fps though because I like smooth flow.

              Hope those tips help or at least get you thinking and pointed in a direction that will lead to the most optimized video file size, bit rate, and image quality possible.
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              • Profile picture of the author ExRat
                Hi Josh,

                Any chance I could tap your brain while you're here please?

                If I wanted to create a Vlog where the videos could be viewed for free by visitors, but were mainly camtasia based videos (edited and added to with normal video snippets in Sony) should I forget free video hosting like Youtube due to the camtasia factor (I want people to be able to clearly see what is going on) and use something like Amazon S3 to host the videos?

                Or is there a good way to get them hosted by a 3rd party AND gain the exposure that goes with that method, without finding that people can't see the details on the screenshots?

                Many thanks.
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                Roger Davis

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                • Profile picture of the author Didier Faucher
                  Originally Posted by ExRat View Post

                  If I wanted to create a Vlog where the videos could be viewed for free by visitors, but were mainly camtasia based videos (edited and added to with normal video snippets in Sony) should I forget free video hosting like Youtube due to the camtasia factor (I want people to be able to clearly see what is going on) and use something like Amazon S3 to host the videos?
                  Roger, go to Josh & Scott (Lundergan)'s http://www.optimizeyourvideo.com/
                  and see how crisp their YouTube videos are !

                  That's amazing!

                  But I don't know how they do that.

                  Didier
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                  • Profile picture of the author Josh Anderson
                    "Hi Josh,

                    Any chance I could tap your brain while you're here please?

                    If I wanted to create a Vlog where the videos could be viewed for free by visitors, but were mainly camtasia based videos (edited and added to with normal video snippets in Sony) should I forget free video hosting like Youtube due to the camtasia factor (I want people to be able to clearly see what is going on) and use something like Amazon S3 to host the videos?
                    In order to get the quality you want to obtain combining live motion and screen capture video it can be pretty tricky... especially if you are publishing it to youtube.

                    For example youtube will display a video at 480x360 so if you want the clearest screen capture image possible on youtube you should never capture more than 480x360 of a screen and use autopan and real time zoom (another one of my secrets) when capturing the video... oh and I prefer to use Camstudio because I get the same or better results than when I use Camtasia (I own it too).

                    Another key is that to successfully combine live motion video and screen capture video while retaining image quality you need to make sure that your screen capture video is no lager in dimension than the live motion video.

                    Now, I have many strategies that no one else knows (seriously) for publishing various dimensions of video on your own site using youtube as the host... but what you need to know is that if you are using traditional youtube methods you just need to focus on the fact that YT will compress it to 320x240 and then display it at 480x360.

                    This is why most youtube videos come out blurry... but if you are using the traditional YT method for publishing screen capture 480x360 will always yield the clearest results.

                    However combining live motion and screen capture and publishing at the standard 720x480 will not give you great results on youtube unless you really zoom in on just the areas of the screen you want people to see.

                    Never ever ever ever capture the entire screen.

                    For combination screen capture and live motion you may want to host it your self.

                    Or is there a good way to get them hosted by a 3rd party AND gain the exposure that goes with that method, without finding that people can't see the details on the screenshots?
                    Sure host your video your self on something like Amazon S3 use the best encoding solutions possible optimize your video dimensions and quality the way you want it and embed it using the player solution you want to use.

                    Then upload a secondary "set and foret" verion to youtube... just don't use it on your site. You will get the free exposure there without having to deal with the strategies and techniques you need to master youtube optimization for on site embedding.


                    "Roger, go to Josh's Optimize Youtube Video - Optimize Streaming Video - Optimize Web Video
                    and see how crisp his YouTube videos are !

                    That's amazing!

                    But I don't know how he does that.

                    Didier"
                    You should see the hate mail I get for taking so long to offer that knowledge to the public ;-)
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              • Profile picture of the author Didier Faucher
                Originally Posted by CSwrite View Post

                Hmmm - ok, try this. Drop your frame rate down to one frame per second. That should shrink it a bit. That was the only other thing I could think of, but I'll keep looking.
                Cary, the SWF is 4.7 MB now. That's better, but the quality is not satisfactory enough, IMO.

                That's weird, because some time ago with the same screen capture I ended up with an 900 KB AVI, voice included (today, for some reason, I had to redo the screen capture and encoding). The SWF was then 2.4 MB, and the quality very good.

                I can't remember what I did at this time...



                Originally Posted by Josh Anderson View Post

                1. Never use camtasia as a video editor. I recommend you use Sony Vegas Movie Studio or Platinum instead. Search youtube for "sony vegas tutorial" and you will pull up a lot to get you rolling if you need help.

                (...)

                Hope those tips help or at least get you thinking and pointed in a direction that will lead to the most optimized video file size, bit rate, and image quality possible.
                Josh, thank you for the great tips and advice.

                Too bad the SMAB icon is no longer available here.
                How about a SMACK instead? Make no mistake, that's a *kiss* in french.

                I'll try tomorrow. I'm too tired now, and have lost half of my hairs...

                Didier
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