Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest Thread - WINNERS ANNOUNCED!!!

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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby Castor Troy » Wed May 02, 2012 12:36 pm

irriadin wrote:Could I submit my videos via disc in lossless .AVI using something like Lagarith / UTVideo?


I always submit that plus an mpeg2.
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby Rider4Z » Wed May 02, 2012 2:57 pm

Kazemon15 wrote:I sent one of my files as MP4 ACC. :| Only because I could not find my uncompressed lossless version of it though...

all of my files were mp4 aac. :uhoh:
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby drewaconclusion » Wed May 02, 2012 3:01 pm

Rider4Z wrote:
Kazemon15 wrote:I sent one of my files as MP4 ACC. :| Only because I could not find my uncompressed lossless version of it though...

all of my files were mp4 aac. :uhoh:
Same here.
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby Ryvannis » Wed May 02, 2012 4:57 pm

Rider4Z wrote:
Kazemon15 wrote:I sent one of my files as MP4 ACC. :| Only because I could not find my uncompressed lossless version of it though...

all of my files were mp4 aac. :uhoh:


Same. Honestly if you can open it in VLC then you're fine. Not trying discredit what xstylus said earlier about formats.

Also, MP4 for best compression. Though for some reason it hates HD formats because my AMV actually looked much better after doing a two pass and doubling the bit rate. Sadly, I noticed this after sending it to my beta testers. :ying:
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby BasharOfTheAges » Wed May 02, 2012 5:31 pm

Actually, the biggest problem with h264 playback in a con environment is dealing with the folks who insist quicktime will work. :lol:
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby mirkosp » Wed May 02, 2012 5:41 pm

The problem with MP4 and AAC is that the sync will vary based on the muxer, encoder, and decoder. You can get a 1-2 frames desync in worst cases, which is not nice for AMVs. MP3 would have the same issue if it wasn't for the fact that LAME is so widespread that everything is synced based on that. AAC otoh has a few common formats: nero was very popular (and used in older builds of zarxgui), but nowadays the best encoder is apple's so zarxgui also shifted to qtaac. The muxer also has a say: zarxgui uses L-SMASH nowadays (and it's not the only one), but mp4box isn't exactly uncommon either. Couple the fact that there are o9k standards for MP4 and you can guess where this goes.
Vorbis/FLAC audio should be preferred when possible, as well as MKV as a container, as far as online distro goes.
The "MP4 for best compression" is particularly misunderstandable... the compression work on the video is done by the codec, which I guess you were referring to x264 in this case. And you definitely can and should mux avc videos in MKV nowadays (I'd actually go so far as to start suggesting 10bit encoding, but I think it's a bit too early for AMVs right now).
So yes, in a con playback situation, which will have further audio delay based on the speaker positioning and room dimension, audio sync is a particularly important thing, and a 1-2 frame desync will only get worse, so that's why a reliable format is even more important.

That said, for cons, if possible, a lossless video codec along with PCM audio in avi would be the best thing, since it allows the contest coordinator to encode to their best preferred format (unless they clearly state a preferred set of formats and settings to use, in which case going with that could be better if it isn't too much of a hassle). With the rules that were available this year for AX, xvid q1 with pcm audio in avi was possibly the safest solution, but if they can take UTVideo, I'd go with that starting next year.
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby drewaconclusion » Wed May 02, 2012 5:45 pm

BasharOfTheAges wrote:Actually, the biggest problem with h264 playback in a con environment is dealing with the folks who insist quicktime will work. :lol:

:truestory:
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby The Wired Knight » Wed May 02, 2012 6:26 pm

I disagree, I'd say the biggest problem in dealing with h.264 is being sued by motorola and having a court rule that you can't distribute your product anymore because of the patent violation.
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby Rider4Z » Wed May 02, 2012 9:10 pm

does the playback desynchronization in x264/mp4 matter if they will be encoded into a dvd for the convention show?
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby Melichan923 » Wed May 02, 2012 9:40 pm

mirkosp wrote:The problem with MP4 and AAC is that the sync will vary based on the muxer, encoder, and decoder. You can get a 1-2 frames desync in worst cases, which is not nice for AMVs. MP3 would have the same issue if it wasn't for the fact that LAME is so widespread that everything is synced based on that. AAC otoh has a few common formats: nero was very popular (and used in older builds of zarxgui), but nowadays the best encoder is apple's so zarxgui also shifted to qtaac. The muxer also has a say: zarxgui uses L-SMASH nowadays (and it's not the only one), but mp4box isn't exactly uncommon either. Couple the fact that there are o9k standards for MP4 and you can guess where this goes.
Vorbis/FLAC audio should be preferred when possible, as well as MKV as a container, as far as online distro goes.
The "MP4 for best compression" is particularly misunderstandable... the compression work on the video is done by the codec, which I guess you were referring to x264 in this case. And you definitely can and should mux avc videos in MKV nowadays (I'd actually go so far as to start suggesting 10bit encoding, but I think it's a bit too early for AMVs right now).
So yes, in a con playback situation, which will have further audio delay based on the speaker positioning and room dimension, audio sync is a particularly important thing, and a 1-2 frame desync will only get worse, so that's why a reliable format is even more important.

That said, for cons, if possible, a lossless video codec along with PCM audio in avi would be the best thing, since it allows the contest coordinator to encode to their best preferred format (unless they clearly state a preferred set of formats and settings to use, in which case going with that could be better if it isn't too much of a hassle). With the rules that were available this year for AX, xvid q1 with pcm audio in avi was possibly the safest solution, but if they can take UTVideo, I'd go with that starting next year.


Oh my God, mirkosp I thought I was the only one with this problem! I want to hug you right now for bringing this problem up in this thread. I started a journal entry on it a few days ago, but decided to not submit it because I didn't think there would be a solution other than converting the original PCM Audio to mp3 and adding ___ amount of milliseconds to the beginning like I've been doing. The problem has to be something on my end because not everyone has this problem. I've been pulling my hair out for weeks and staying up very late trying to figure this out to barely make some deadlines and remedy all my mp4 encodes. Eventually I ended up giving up in some cases and sent in an MPEG-2. I've only sent to a few cons this year but this sync issue making converting the biggest hassle ever. There was one con I sent to that would accept HuffYUV or Lagarith but they also required a pretty high resolution and I think sending in a 6-9GB file would not make other people who are trying to upload or the contest coordinators very happy. Also, I can't preview 1080p when it's encoded as lossless - my computer doesn't handle it so well and not being able to preview it before sending it bothers me. I looked over the Anime Expo rules and didn't see Lossless as an option, but at this point I may have no choice if it is allowed. I have yet to try UTVideo and I don't know if the size is any better than Lagarith.

The thing is, I upgraded to the newest version of Zarx in February and I continue to have this issue. My very first encode with it came out fine, but I think that was a coincidence. The demuxing and replacing with a delayed mp3 and remuxing solution works sometimes, but still I can see an ever so slight difference from the test previews with other codecs I render from Vegas. Maybe another container will work like you said.

A lot of years my e-mails don't go through to Anime Expo (getting kind of nervous actually that I haven't gotten the FTP info yet) but I will try to ask if those said formats are an option. At the very least if I can't submit I know there might be a solution for me in the future after all. THANK YOU!
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby XStylus » Thu May 03, 2012 12:37 am

irriadin wrote:Could I submit my videos via disc in lossless .AVI using something like Lagarith / UTVideo?


On disc? Sure. Via download? Fsck no! :P

I'll take either or. I'm familiar with both as I used them for the AMV Chef footage last year. I learned the hard way how to mitigate any quirks from those. Ohhhh the horror stories I could tell...

As for RGB RAW (who uses that?!) or HuffYUV, my hard drive says NO.
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby l33tmeatwad » Thu May 03, 2012 2:03 am

Melichan923 wrote:The thing is, I upgraded to the newest version of Zarx in February and I continue to have this issue. My very first encode with it came out fine, but I think that was a coincidence. The demuxing and replacing with a delayed mp3 and remuxing solution works sometimes, but still I can see an ever so slight difference from the test previews with other codecs I render from Vegas. Maybe another container will work like you said.

The new Zarx uses L-Smash to mux the videos, which uses a different MP4 standard than previous versions that used MP4Box. That said, there shouldn't be a delay, it's very possible the delay is caused by the splitter handling the MP4 file, then when you remux, it's still off because you are most likely not using L-Smash to recontainer the new video. You could probably run the Zarx encode that is having playback delays through MP4Box and the sync then randomly start working. I can't say for sure since I don't have your particular setup to test from, but I will say this, MP4s that were created with L-Smash give dropbox playback (on the website through a web browser) a wierd problem where it shows the video sideways...simply recontainering using MP4Box eliminates this problem. Although if we bring the audio codec change in Zarx into this too, there could be delay there from the playback...all I can recommend is updating your direct show filters and file splitters and seeing if the problem goes away, as it's most likely the playback that is to blame.
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby mirkosp » Thu May 03, 2012 2:27 am

I'll also note here that muxing with x264 with the l-smash patch and using als audio has proven to be the most sync safe solution in mp4, as extensively tested by Quu. Quite obviously, since als does not employ mdct.
So yes... mp4 and aac make for some major playback hell as far as sync goes. Hence why one should just use mkv and another audio format (ones that don't use mdct) for online distro. Makes it a lot easier. >_>
Or yes, als audio in mp4, if one is so inclined, but you know, fuck that. :o
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby l33tmeatwad » Thu May 03, 2012 2:57 am

mirkosp wrote:I'll also note here that muxing with x264 with the l-smash patch and using als audio has proven to be the most sync safe solution in mp4, as extensively tested by Quu. Quite obviously, since als does not employ mdct.
So yes... mp4 and aac make for some major playback hell as far as sync goes. Hence why one should just use mkv and another audio format (ones that don't use mdct) for online distro. Makes it a lot easier. >_>
Or yes, als audio in mp4, if one is so inclined, but you know, fuck that. :o

The playback sync hell is only because of the different ways in which different playback methods handle the files that are often created under different standards. That said, I still prefer x264/AAC MP4 for a main release when x264 is encoded under Level 3.1 or 4.1 standards to have compatibility with other devices, allowing those who download the videos to easily playback the videos on multiple devices. I check the sync of videos on multiple devices before releasing a video to ensure a good cross platform compatibility with the best sync I can offer. I have no problem having multiple downloads and having a MKV version available, but I prefer not to force someone to have to re-encode a video to have the ability to playback the video on their portable devices, gaming console, or Blu-ray player.

That said, for conventions it would be nice if all of them accepted MKV files. As you stated, it's the best way to deliver the files without having to worry about possible sync issues outside of delivering a lossless AVI with PCM audio.
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Re: Anime Expo 2012 AMV Contest - (EZ Rules) DEADLINE: MAY 5

Postby mirkosp » Thu May 03, 2012 3:08 am

But mp4 aren't compatible with divx players! You're totally forcing people to re-encode! :ying:
Jokes aside, unrestricted x264+flac in mkv is how I usually play it. Plays on Windows, OS X, Linux, and if it plays on other stuff too then it's good. Otherwise, it's fine. Hey, it's an amv. Re-encoding a high quality encode is gonna do little harm, it's not like we're doing srsbiz... and in reality most people WILL just watch a streaming re-encode anyway, perhaps the org preview, but most likely some youtube reupload. So I might as well make sure that those that care enough about quality to download it get the best quality possible (hence why I'd like the 10bit switch to be faster), without getting the filesize too big. They are most likely just going to double click on the file after the download anyway, and most netbooks nowadays can take 720p24 like cake.
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