zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

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zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby crickets » Wed May 11, 2011 5:11 pm

*waves* Hello. I have a question about zarx264gui and I was wondering if anybody may have had a similar experience.

Background/Set-up:
I am using zarx for the very first time. I used it to compress a live action video last night and it was gorgeous. Beyond expectations. However, I noticed it wouldn't stream from my own web server. Eventually it did play, but it was distorted and lacked sound. Thinking it was somehow an issue with the website (I'm fairly new to hosting videos at my own space) I just gave up and decided to try uploading to streaming sites as per usual. I tried youtube first, and the video was better, but the first few seconds were completely distorted.

Finally, Vimeo worked fine. Success. (?)

Nope. After posting, someone privately messaged me to tell me that on their mac, the video would not play in quicktime at all. They had the same distorted/no-sound issue I had on my own site. I reluctantly pulled up VDubMod and created an AVI file for them to try. It worked fine.

So my question is; what could cause this? Has anyone else had experience with this. If I'm missing any vital information I'll try to get an answer. As I said, this is my first time and this whole encoding/compressing process has always been confusing to me.

A few things:
I vid in Sony Vegas 10.0
My source material was comprised up of both mpg and avi files.
I use the ut yuv422 uly2 codec to render the AVI [Did not choose this for any particular reason.]
Here is the file itself, in case that helps: http://www.megaupload.com/?d=QNRS3XB0

And one last note, both Vimeo and Tumblr were able to convert this mp4 into a working file (in quicktime.) I used a firefox add-on to snag those files after uploading and both of them worked fine in quicktime.

Thanks for your help.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby Mister Hatt » Thu May 12, 2011 1:40 am

I don't think QT can play YUY2 AVC. Your fault for having no idea what you're doing, not a ZarxGUI or QT bug. Works in browser because those sites either transcode it to YV12 AVC, or the browsers in use are using lavc to decode. Could probably grab your file to double check it isn't a strange fourcc conflict issue or something but that is a little too much effort compared to telling you to use the right colourspace. Incidentally doing so will make your encodes smaller, by half a byte each pixel per frame.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby crickets » Thu May 12, 2011 7:43 am

Thanks Mister Hatt, I thought, and actually hoped, it could be something I was doing, that way it would be something I could easily fix. I had a hunch it could be linked to the ut yuv422 uly2 which is why I mentioned it. Hopefully rendering differently will do the trick. I tried to search for information on ut yuv422 and quicktime but nothing turned up.

I'm guessing VDub removed/changed that codec when I used it to create the compressed .avi I eventually uploaded.

I don't have my computer with me right now otherwise I'd pull up Sony Vegas and take a look at my render options so I could ask a more informed question, but how should I render this then? Meaning would one of the other UT codecs work in QT or do I need to use something else altogether? My main thing is that I was really happy with the final product after compressing with zarx and I want to learn how to make it work so that it is quicktime compatible.

Regarding colorspace, I'll be downloading mediainfo when I can get back to my computer because I see according to this post ( viewtopic.php?f=46&t=103066&view=next ) I need to check my source footage for that information.

Thanks again.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby Zarxrax » Thu May 12, 2011 10:35 am

Uh, to the best of my knowledge, zarx264gui will not create yuv422 files, unless something has chanced that I am unaware of. Regardless, it would be better to use yuv420 option in utvideo.

If that does not help, then you can try going to the advanced tab of zarx264gui, and change the level from Unrestricted. First try level 4.1, and if that does not help, then try 3.0/baseline.

I have heard over the years that quicktime is really finicky and has trouble supporting several features of H.264. This option will limit some of the options used in an attempt for better compatibility.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby BasharOfTheAges » Thu May 12, 2011 1:28 pm

There were also, IIRC, older versions of the encoder that clashed with certain decoder versions. Make sure you're up to date.

I've had several people come to me with complaints their QT was throwing up on videos i've linked them to here on the 'org in the past 3-4 months. There is some sporadic issue, but I won't let QT on any of my systems to try to figure it out, and none of the people who have been experiencing the problem and telling me about it are invested enough to do anything other than just use VLC instead so the problem goes away for them.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby crickets » Thu May 12, 2011 3:59 pm

Zarxrax wrote:Uh, to the best of my knowledge, zarx264gui will not create yuv422 files, unless something has chanced that I am unaware of. Regardless, it would be better to use yuv420 option in utvideo.


Oh, so that's likely the problem as well? I'll definitely try the other option and re-render my video. Thank you so much.

Bashar, I have the most recent stuff I'm pretty sure because I'm working from a brand new computer and have just installed the software from the most up-to-date downloads. But regarding using VLC. That is fine for personal viewing, but for distribution, I'm a little more picky. Someone who downloaded it couldn't play it, which is what brought the fact that it was a problem with the file itself to my attention. I'd love to be able to provide a download that everyone can play (that's as gorgeous as this one is!)

Thank you all very much! I'm going to re-render now and crossing my fingers that your advice helps!
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby BasharOfTheAges » Thu May 12, 2011 5:53 pm

I wasn't suggesting VLC as an answer - i was badmouthing my friends as lazy bastards for defaulting to using it instead of actually trying to fix the issue like you seem to be trying to do. In the end if it's an issue with QT not being complaint with the newer version of the encoder, the real answer is to get people to stop using products that can't keep up. That's pretty much tilting at windmills though.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby Mister Hatt » Thu May 12, 2011 10:05 pm

Zarxrax wrote:Uh, to the best of my knowledge, zarx264gui will not create yuv422 files, unless something has chanced that I am unaware of.
I was thinking of a patched x264 so ignore me on that one. My guess though is some random feature is being crapped on by certain versions of QT, as a few people have mentioned. It's kinda common, see how QT goes using lavc via Perian to decode, if it even allows overriding of the Apple decoder?
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby crickets » Fri May 13, 2011 8:38 pm

It's the weirdest thing. I tried rendering the ut video yuv420 option before using zarx to compress. Didn't worm. Then I tried compressing that file in zarx at the levels 4.1 and 3.0/baseline, as suggested, and those didn't work either. Then I gave up on the ut video codecs and tried rendering as huffyyuv and compressing with zarx, and that didn't play in quicktime either.

I should note that I am able to use these files (with xvid compression) in virtualdubmod and the final product (an .avi file) does play in quicktime. I am totally baffled by this. And I feel even more confused than when I started. If you guys have any other suggestions, I'm all ears.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby crickets » Fri May 13, 2011 8:40 pm

Didn't work*

(Not worm.)
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby mirkosp » Sat May 14, 2011 1:56 am

Go back to unrestricted and in the last tab, with the command line, add in the box the following code
Code: Select all
--ref 15

Why this? Because Apple is terrible and if they didn't bother getting something to work in their encoder, they likely didn't bother supporting it in their player either, which makes Quicktime a player with a LOT of missing features that it should be supporting as they are part of the H.264/AVC standard.
...one of these features being ref 16, the maximum allowed by the standard. Apparently Apple thinks that 15 is enough so they didn't bother supporting 16 refs.
One of the things that the preset "veryslow" does in x264 is setting the ref to 16. While this is a good thing for your encoding needs with proper decoders and players, if you have to do an encode that works in QT, you'll have to comply to its awful support and cut down on refs.
Possibly other settings aren't supported either, so if the encode doesn't work yet, I suggest you to ask in doom10's newbies section for further help in making a QuickTime compatible encode.
Personally, I just refuse to make encodes compatible with QuickTime if that's what it takes; even on Mac OSX there are much more valid alternatives, such as Mplayer OSX Extended and Mplayer2, so users should be using those instead.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby Zarxrax » Sat May 14, 2011 10:09 am

Mirko, if he used the profile setting, then that automatically limited the number of reference frames, so its probably gotta be something else.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby crickets » Fri May 20, 2011 3:21 pm

I still haven't figured out what the deal with this is. Does anyone have any other suggestions. I have tried everything here.

I am pretty determined to get this two work for a couple of reasons:
1. I want my downloads to be compatible for anyone who downloads them.
2. I want to be able upload and play my encode on my personal webspace; because it is currently incompatible with quicktime, and I'm using JWplayer on my site, the final .mp4 that zarx produces, renders it unusable for this kind of web playback.
3. It's really pretty, darn it.
4. It's kind of infuriating that I can't get it to work. There *must* be a solution, right?

Is there any way to run a diagnostic on the final .mp4 that zarx produces; or is there any way to run a diagnostic on the original full size .avi (that I use to write my .avs file) in order to discover the problem?
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby Beefy_Suavo » Sat May 21, 2011 12:48 am

QuickTime doesn't like mp3 audio jammed into a mp4 file.

mp4box.exe -info strangeanduntrue.mp4

[iso file] Box "avcC" has 4 extra bytes
* Movie Info *
Timescale 600 - Duration 00:04:48.600
Fragmented File no - 2 track(s)
File Brand mp42 - version 0
Created: GMT Wed May 11 01:45:34 2011

File has root IOD
Scene PL 0xff - Graphics PL 0xff - OD PL 0xff
Visual PL: ISO Reserved Profile (0x7f)
Audio PL: Not part of MPEG-4 audio profiles (0xfe)

Track # 1 Info - TrackID 1 - TimeScale 30000 - Duration 00:04:40.213
Track is present in Root OD
Media Info: Language "Undetermined" - Type "vide:avc1" - 8398 samples
Visual Track layout: x=0 y=0 width=848 height=480
MPEG-4 Config: Visual Stream - ObjectTypeIndication 0x21
AVC/H264 Video - Visual Size 848 x 480
AVC Info: 1 SPS - 1 PPS - Profile High @ Level 4
NAL Unit length bits: 32
Self-synchronized

Track # 2 Info - TrackID 2 - TimeScale 44100 - Duration 00:04:48.600
Track is present in Root OD
Media Info: Language "Undetermined" - Type "soun:mp4a" - 10729 samples
MPEG-4 Config: Audio Stream - ObjectTypeIndication 0x6b
MPEG-1 Audio - 2 Channel(s) - SampleRate 44100 - Layer 3
Synchronized on stream 1


I demuxed the video into a new mp4 file and it played fine in QuickTime.
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Re: zarx264gui - so pretty, yet encode doesn't play in QT

Postby Zarxrax » Sat May 21, 2011 10:24 am

Hmm, well I'll be.
Maybe I'll add some kind of warning if people use mp3.
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