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Video Distributions and Post Production

You've exported your video from your editing package. Good. Of course, if you've done things right you will probably have a file that is several gigabytes in size. You are more than likely eager to compress this to something you can use to put online or send to a convention.... but don't be hasty as there are still a lot of things you should do to prepare your footage for distribution.

In order to post-process footage, we are going to return yet again to Avisynth. This is the best post-processing tool around. Now at this point your file should be an avi, and it should either be uncompressed, or compressed with a lossless codec like huffyuv or Lagarith. What you should do is import avi file into an avisynth script with an AVISource command like this:


This should show you your video in it's full resolution glory... it looks great, but it still needs work.

The post production options you choose will depend on what type of distribution you want to encode. Most people will want to make two kinds of distribution encode - one for distribution on the internet and another for distribution to conventions.

As most of the differences will be in how you prepare your avs file, you may want to make two avs files - one for the internet distribution and another for the convention one.

Please make sure you read through every step carefully as each step is important if you want to get the right result.

Now, what exactly still needs to be done?

1) If your video has any interlacing (and it should NOT, if you followed this guide--if interlacing was introduced when you exported your video then you may want to check over your export settings), you need to remove the interlacing now. The exception is if you are going to keep your video interlaced for display on a television, or if you are sending it to a convention that accepts interlaced videos.

2) If you are going to be encoding your video for online distribution, you may need to do some cropping and resizing.

3) You can make your video look significantly nicer by cleaning it up some with AVISynth. Keep in mind that most of the filters mentioned are designed with progressive footage in mind, so don't try this if your video is interlaced.

4) Do you need to encode your video for online distribution, or for a convention, or for both? If you are going for online distribution, then you will probably want to either encode your video to either MPEG-1, Xvid, or H.264. MPEG-1 is the oldest technology, so it does not compress well, but has been around long enough that these files can be played by just about anything. H.264 is the newest format on the block and will give you the best quality with a small filesize, but might not work well on old or slow computers. Xvid rests somewhere in the middle of these two.