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YouTube, Soundproofing, etc

I don’t check Jim Thompson’s Making Movies blog very often, but lately there’s been a lot of good stuff:

  • the problems with YouTube’s low-quality videos (actually Macromedia’s .flv format). He writes: The video frame size is scaled to no larger than 320×240. I haven’t been able to tell exactly what the rates are, but the frame rate appears to be between 25 and 30 frames per second, and the video data rate appears to be somewhere around 200 Kilobits (kbps) per second. Audio is reduced to mono and transcoded to a lower bit rate. This transcoding is what’s going on in between the time you complete your upload to YouTube, and the time that the video is finally available for viewing.200 kpbs is an exceptionally low data rate for video. By comparison, typical DVD rates are around 8 Megabits per second (mbps), and DV video has a rate of 25 mbps. Of course, these formats have over four times as many pixels as a YouTube video. Computing the data rate on a per-pixel basis, DVD video has a data rate about 9 times greater than the FLV format used at YouTube, and DV video has a data rate nearly 28 times greater. (My comment: I watched a 30 minute southpark episode a few hours ago on YouTube. Good enough for me).
  • a new linux distribution optimized for video production (coincidentally, I probably will be looking into using linux as a NLE environment, although not as on my primary machine. I was warned about the teething problems about using Kino/Cinelerra for HDV editing.
  • places to obtain music for movies.
  • Thompson has (like me) been thinking about room acoustics for home recording. I’m thinking of recording in a walkin closet. So far I’ve found two articles about why having a dead room may not be the best idea. (Here’s another article about cheap-ass soundproofing and a gigantic thread on sound-proofing ).
  • From Thompson, a link to technical tips on shooting and producing HD content. Also, a digg/Dwight link on videosharing services.

Among other things, here’s a collection of technical articles on sound production and check out the two page article on microphones and microphone placement. (technical, but good illustrations).

Above, I mentioned watching a southpark episode on youtube. Well, here it is, the famous Return of the Lord of the Rings to the Two Towers, a TV classic if there ever was one.

Finally, for all you Houstonians there, director Jonathan Caouette will introduce a screening of his widely-acclaimed film, Tarnation at Rice Cinema (Located on the corner of University Blvd. & Stockton St. – Rice entrance #8). Thursday, April 20, 2006 at 7:00pm, $5 – General Admission, Free – SWAMP Members & Students. (See Roger Ebert’s review of the film). And while I’m plugging Houston, here’s the schedule for Season 30 of the Territory. The first episode was two days ago. For those who don’t know, Territory is the longest running public television showcase of independent film/video in the country. Last week they showed some classic John Sanborn videos, and this season is a retrospective of the best things they’ve shown over the decades, including early works by Robert Rodriguez and Jane Campion.

Gosh, not that I really want to publicize film/video events in Houston, but it looks like next week the Aurora Picture Show will host a media archeology film festival . Unclear what’s going on, but it looks like lots of arty video people staging live events at Houston art venues. Yes, folks, Houston can be cool sometimes.

Update: Aurora Picture Show (which I still haven’t visited!) has a blog and an RSS feed. That’s great!