Old 03-19-2017, 06:32 PM   #1
Cableaddict
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Default VIDEO RENDERING QUESTIONS

I am rendering video for the first time.

(Note, I run Reaper on Windows, but I edit video on a Mac, using Final Cut ProX.)

I have read a bunch of tutorials about this, enough to make me dizzy, and I’m making some progress. So far I can both view video in Reaper, and also render AVI format video to some extent, but I still have several issues. I’d rather not bloat those other threads. Hopefully someone can help me out here, directly.
=================================================

My Questions:


1: NEWEST VERSION OF FFMPEG?

- Do we even HAVE to still manually download & install this? the various wiki pages and tutorials are MADDENINGLY confusing.

I have installed a somewhat old version of FFmpeg, the one referenced in the first tutorial I read. It appears to be from 2012.

I downloaded the latest version of FFmpeg, v 3.2.4, but while this installer has all sorts of files & folders in it, there is no "BIN" folder, and no DLL's.

Can someone explain where I should be looking, or suggest a different, but current, download? I've also downloaded v 3..1, and that DOES have DLL files, but they are from April 2016.
———————————————

WHICH CODEC?

Here’s what works, and what doesn’t:

DV: Does not render at all.

MJPEG: I works fine with files at around 1 minute long, but rendered videos over 3 minutes long stutter badly when playing back.

FFV1: it renders, but the resultant video is black. (The audio does play.)

Huffyuv: This seems to work perfectly. The rendered file is very large. I assume this is because it’s uncompressed, yes?

Since I want to further edit my new videos in Final Cut Pro, I assume that using the lossless HuffYuv codec would be best, correct?
- but FCP does not accept AVI files, it needs MP4 types. Yet, when I choose to render MP4 in Reaper, there is no lossless codec available. The only choice, MJPEG, creates an even smaller files than the AVI / MPEG combo. This is not acceptable.

CAN THIS BE FIXED BY INSTALLING SOMETHING ELSE? PERHAPS SOMETHING FORM THE NEWEST FFmeg?

If not, is my only option to render as a lossless AVI, then convert the AVI to MP4 in my Mac, before importing it to FCPx?

————————————————

2: RENDER WITH 320K AUDIO?

I am trying to do some post on a few home-made "band performance" videos. My consumer camcorders only record audio at 128K. I can’t help that now, but after doing my audio tweaks, I’d like to render the NEW videos with audio at a higher rate. 320K, I guess. Most people now view videos from a computer or tablet, so I don’t see why this should be an issue.
- BUT I CAN’T:

I can currently render AVI video (which is fine) using three of the four visible codecs: MJPEG, FFV1, and Huffyuv. HOWEVER, I cannot select any audio bit rate other than 128K. The selector is greyed out.

Is this just the way it is, or could this be due to my using the 2012 version of FFmpeg?
———————————————

3: REPLACING THE AUDIO:

I want to replace one video’s camcorder audio, with wav that was simultaneously ecorded in a portable reaper rig. I DID manage to do this, but I want to make sure it’s the “proper” way. I’ve read of some other ways which are more complicated, and don’t let you view the new audio together with the video before rendering, which seems absurd.

What I did was: I put the new audio onto a separate track, below the video’s embedded audio. Because you can’t turn off the video track, I simply pulled the original audio’s level down to zero. I rendered my new video (again, to only 128K as I had no choice) with both tracks open, and it seems to work just fine.

So, is this OK? No potential issues?
Is there really a better way to do this?

————————————————

4: SESSION SAMPLE RATE?


If I load a video with 48K audio, into a session that is at 44.1K, then I render at 48K, is this a problem? (i.e. unwanted conversions) I assume that the session’s bit rate only affects audio recorded directly into that session, not imported audio, correct?

Also: Is it important to render a video with 48K audio? I know that’s the video standard, but except for commercial DVD’s, there’s no NEED for this, is there?

Last edited by Cableaddict; 03-19-2017 at 11:57 PM.
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Old 03-20-2017, 09:44 AM   #2
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Sounds like you downloaded the Static build rather than the Shared build. The Shared build makes the dll files available.

http://ffmpeg.zeranoe.com/builds

Select 3.2.4 / 64 or 32 bit to match your REAPER installation / Shared

That should get you the dll files.

Your approach to audio replacement works for me.

Once you have the shared libraries in place you should see the h.264 codec. As far as I know that's the highest quality render available for mp4/mov container.

I was able to choose 320 kbps aac for this render. I was also able to choose 24 bit PCM. Not sure if Final Cut will ingest a .mov with uncompressed audio, but it's worth a try.

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Old 03-20-2017, 12:56 PM   #3
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so Fran... when you dl that you get a zip file... that opens to a folder of other files...

do you put that whole folder into the reaper folder or what exactly?

thanks for step by step info for dummies!
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Old 03-20-2017, 02:02 PM   #4
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oh maybe never mind I also got the static build but just went back to get the shared ver.
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Old 03-20-2017, 03:03 PM   #5
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Thanks, Fran!

This is a good start.

-------------------------

Still hoping for answers to the rest of my query. Sadly, the WIKI article is badly out of date, and the sticky thread contains a lot of VERY old, out of date info.


We badly need a completely new tutorial, with nothing but 2017-correct info.
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Old 03-20-2017, 03:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hopi View Post
so Fran... when you dl that you get a zip file... that opens to a folder of other files...

do you put that whole folder into the reaper folder or what exactly?

thanks for step by step info for dummies!


You only need 4 DLL's, which are found (along with other stuff) in a sub-folder titled "BIN."

The four are, as always, avcodec-xx.dll, avformat-xx.dll, avutil-xx.dll, and swscale-xx.dll. - The "xx" is the release number, which changes with time.

From what I can see, the most current DLL versions (from FFmpeg 3.2.4) are identical to those in 2016's FFmpeg version 3.0.1. So, currently:

▪ avcodec-57.dll
▪ avformat-57.dll
▪ avutil-55.dll
▪ swscale-4.dll
===============================

### UPDATE:

this info, which came from various online sources, is INCORRECT.
You actually need ALL of the DLL's.

See further below in this thread.

Last edited by Cableaddict; 04-04-2017 at 11:07 PM.
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Old 03-20-2017, 03:21 PM   #7
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thanks for that addict... I did have older versions in there so maybe these will be better
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Old 03-21-2017, 12:10 PM   #8
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Cableaddict - sorry no experience here, but I have a thing I want to do with video/audio and haven't decided between After Effects (which I know) or Reaper.

Why can't you do everything in FCP?
Or if you have to process the audio in Reaper, can't you output full length lossless audio for each video file, and do a replace on the audio in FCP?
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Old 03-21-2017, 03:20 PM   #9
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Cableaddict,where do you put the 4 dll files.cheers.
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Old 03-21-2017, 03:47 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cretaceous View Post
Why can't you do everything in FCP?
Or if you have to process the audio in Reaper, can't you output full length lossless audio for each video file, and do a replace on the audio in FCP?
Sure, I suppose that's the other way to get to the same place. I've never done it that way, but I know it's possible. Heck, that might even then give me the option of embedding higher bit-rate audio.

I'll look into it.
==========

Still, it would be nice to have choices. If I'm working on some video post thing, and my only concern is audio, it's a lot faster just to render in Reaper then send the file to the video editor. Not a big deal, but again, nice to have options.
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Old 03-21-2017, 03:54 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soundlimit15 View Post
Cableaddict,where do you put the 4 dll files.cheers.

According to the reaper WIKI, they go in the hidden App Data folder:

Control Panel, select "view hidden files" then
Your User Folder > App Data > Roaming > Reaper > User Plugins.

---------

FWIW, I installed the latest DLL's yesterday. I did not have ANY installed previously, and was just using whatever is built into Reaper. After installing these, I see ZERO difference. There are no new or improved rendering options.

Mind, you I am just learning this stuff so I may be overlooking something.
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Old 03-21-2017, 04:59 PM   #12
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the ffmpeg libraries are to decode the video. Not for exporting. I hope we can have better export video options one day.
Meanwhile, if you need specific encoding settings, you can export to the loseless codec and then encode it with an external application.
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Old 03-22-2017, 11:29 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by heda View Post
the ffmpeg libraries are to decode the video. Not for exporting. I hope we can have better export video options one day.
Meanwhile, if you need specific encoding settings, you can export to the loseless codec and then encode it with an external application.
Sorry, this is not accurate. In order to export h.264 we need the FFmpeg libraries in a location that REAPER can find.

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Old 03-22-2017, 11:33 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cableaddict View Post
According to the reaper WIKI, they go in the hidden App Data folder:

Control Panel, select "view hidden files" then
Your User Folder > App Data > Roaming > Reaper > User Plugins.

---------

FWIW, I installed the latest DLL's yesterday. I did not have ANY installed previously, and was just using whatever is built into Reaper. After installing these, I see ZERO difference. There are no new or improved rendering options.

Mind, you I am just learning this stuff so I may be overlooking something.
That's the location I'm using. For Output Format I choose "Video (ffmpeg/libav encoder)" then in Format I choose "QT/MOV/MP4" which makes H.264 available.

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Old 03-22-2017, 12:27 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fran Guidry View Post
Sorry, this is not accurate. In order to export h.264 we need the FFmpeg libraries in a location that REAPER can find.

Fran
oops. you are right. It makes sense. thanks.

The problem is that I don't know what that % value means in the option when I select H264. I guess it is quality. But a bit limited. It would be great if we could change the all the parameters that ffmpeg would use to encode it.
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Old 03-24-2017, 08:19 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fran Guidry View Post
For Output Format I choose "Video (ffmpeg/libav encoder)" then in Format I choose "QT/MOV/MP4" which makes H.264 available.
Fran, I tried this, but when I choose the Format "QT/MOV/MP4" - my only codec option is MJPEG.

Also, I STILL can't choose any audio except 128K, which is my most serious issue/ question. I don't want to make music videos at 128K. That's ridiculous.



Any ideas?
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Old 03-24-2017, 10:51 PM   #17
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Here's my decoder info



It's in the video prefs. What does yours look like?

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Old 03-25-2017, 12:34 PM   #18
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Thanks, Fran. I appreciate the effort!


OK, so two things:

1: I did not have VLC installed. I was under the impression that this is not necessary. (All the online info about this is conflicting and confusing.)

I did just install it, but it made no difference at all, in playback nor in rendering options.


2: I don't have the same ffmpeg/libav numbers as you. My window says version 54, yet I have 57 in my user's folder.

## Is there some "rescan" method for these files?
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Old 03-25-2017, 01:30 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cableaddict View Post
Thanks, Fran. I appreciate the effort!


OK, so two things:

1: I did not have VLC installed. I was under the impression that this is not necessary. (All the online info about this is conflicting and confusing.)

I did just install it, but it made no difference at all, in playback nor in rendering options.


2: I don't have the same ffmpeg/libav numbers as you. My window says version 54, yet I have 57 in my user's folder.

## Is there some "rescan" method for these files?
You're right, VLC is only used for decoding/playback, not for encoding/render.

I don't know about rescanning, but it sounds like you have more than one set of libraries installed.

Back in Settings / Video / Video Decoder Information you'll find the path being searched for these libraries. This will tell you where to look for the libraries.



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Old 03-25-2017, 01:53 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fran Guidry View Post
Back in Settings / Video / Video Decoder Information you'll find the path being searched for these libraries. This will tell you where to look for the libraries.
So my Reaper was looking at its own folder, in APPS > REAPER > PLUGINS.

I dumped that ffmpeg dll in the trash, then re-loaded y session, but now Reaper sees NO FFMPEG at all.

It does not see the files sitting in my hidden "user plugins" folder! - And there's no functionality to point it there.


UGHH ..............
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Old 03-25-2017, 03:09 PM   #21
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Update:

OK, I figured it out. All of the online tutorials and thread I've read have this dead -wrong:


1: One must indeed put ALL of the DLL's into the user folder, not just the original 4.

2: You have to run "clear cache & re-scan" afterwards. - Odd, since these are not VST plugins.

----------------

also note, for anyone still figuring this out: There is no need to delete the older version of FFmpeg which install with Reaper by default, residing in the applications > Reaper > plugins folder. You can just leave that alone.

-----------------------------------

More good News:

Depending on the codec selected, I can now render with 16 bit pcm audio. It also appears that one can select "mp3" and then type-in "320K" -though I haven't tested yet to see if this actually works.
================================================



## Someone needs to make a completely new doc / sticky.
Video in Reaper should not be this arcane & frustrating.
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Old 03-29-2017, 01:36 PM   #22
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[QUOTE=Cableaddict;1823396]Update:

OK, I figured it out. All of the online tutorials and thread I've read have this dead -wrong:


1: One must indeed put ALL of the DLL's into the user folder, not just the original 4.

2: You have to run "clear cache & re-scan" afterwards. - Odd, since these are not VST plugins.

----------------

also note, for anyone still figuring this out: There is no need to delete the older version of FFmpeg which install with Reaper by default, residing in the applications > Reaper > plugins folder. You can just leave that alone.

-----------------------------------

More good News:

Depending on the codec selected, I can now render with 16 bit pcm audio. It also appears that one can select "mp3" and then type-in "320K" -though I haven't tested yet to see if this actually works.
================================================
Thanks for that info Cableaddict!
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Old 03-29-2017, 08:29 PM   #23
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I have all of the FFMPEG dlls copied into the main Reaper install folder and it seems to work just fine. The same location that the LAME MP3 encoder is.
C:\Program Files\REAPER (x64)\copy dlls here

I have these:
avcodec-57.dll
avdevice-57.dll
avfilter-6.dll
avformat-57.dll
avutil-55.dll
postproc-54.dll
swresample-2.dll
swscale-4.dll

Quote:
Originally Posted by insub View Post
FFMPEG build 3.0+ codec pack dll's are required! I used 3.0.1
ffmpeg-3.0.1-win64-shared.7z
Here is the link to the latest 64bit build rather than 3.0.1. I don't know if the latest version (3.2.2 at the moment) is compatible or not.
Here is the link to the latest 32bit build.

Last edited by insub; 03-29-2017 at 08:38 PM.
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