Video Website Datasheets #2: vimeo

January 7, 2008

Vista busy cursor If YouTube was an obvious starting place for my series of investigations into video websites then the second should provide something of a contrast. I’ve chosen vimeo as a service with pretensions of better quality. Vimeo offers an HD service, although I only address the standard definition option here. I am treating HD as a specialist offering, not part of the mainstream.


Updated 20 January 2008 

A. Output Quality

File Format: flv (Flash video)

Video Codec: On2 VP6

Video Resolution: As source ( maximum 504 x 404)

Video Bitrate: 471 kbps

Max. GOP: 300 frames

Frame-rate: As source

Always re-encoded: Yes

Audio Format: mp3 (MPEG-1 Audio layer 3)

Audio Channels: stereo

Audio Bitrate: 64 kbps (CBR)

Audio Sampling Rate: 44.1 kHz

Audio Resolution: 16 bit

B. Input Flexibility

Input File Formats: asf, asx, avi, divx, dv, dvx, m4v, mov, mp4, mpeg, mpg, qt, wmv, 3g2, 3gp, 3ivx and 3vx (not flv)

Max. Video Length: None

Max. File Size: 500MB weekly upload limit

C. Comments

  • The flv format is not accepted, so everything always has to be re-encoded regardless.
  • Higher bitrate than YouTube, more advanced video codec and retention of original resolution (within limits) all make for better video quality. Note that increasing the resolution is not accompanied by higher bitrate so may be self-defeating. If higher resolution is important it may be advisable to use vimeo’s HD option.
  • The On2 VP6 video codec performs better at low bitrates than the Sorenson Spark H.263 codec used by YouTube, but it only plays on Flash 8 and later.

Summary of just the key data affecting video quality for all websites analysed can be found here.

For all Video Datasheet posts click here.

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