Videos are actually quite easy


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May 16, 2011
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I've been playing with Handbrake, and it turns out the Echo's drivers (for QSD8650's
onboard video hardware) aren't horribly broken like so many Snapdragon-based phones.

I should update with some screenshots later, but here's my basic results:

1) Download and install Handbrake (HandBrake), start the program and set a default output folder
2) Select a very intensive video file (Nichijou ? 19 ? Doki Fansubs is a good resource hog)
3) Select the Normal->High Profile video quality, there are several simple options you can change
3a) On first page, Width is important (this can't be more than 1280 pixels)
3b) Audio - if already AAC then select AC3 passthru; if recoding FLAC there may be a small offset...
3c) Video - Constant Quality is fine, but phone couldn't handle Nichijou19 at RF lower than ~26
\3c) ...also, I would not advise using Target Bitrate; Constant Quality looks better and is smaller
3d) Subtitles - If you need these, highlight the one you want and select "burn in" checkbox
3e) Advanced - You probably shouldn't touch anything on this page, it's already High Profile 3.1
4) Click "Start", then find something to do while the program spins along...
\4) ...if you want to encode several files in a row, Handbrake allows you to queue them up in a chain
5) You should now have an .m4v file with the same name as its source, ready for your phone
6) Use either Astro Bluetooth or (more sanely) a USB cable to transfer the video onto your phone
\6) ...personally I suggest placing all videos into the Downloads folder, but Gallery will find 'em anyway
7) Video should appear in Gallery app, I suggest always hitting the "-" to correct the aspect ratio tho.

My personal result was two different idealized sets of tweaks for recoding this example file:
HQ: High Profile- width 1280 - RF 26 - AC3 passthru......................(253,735,171 bytes)
LQ: High Profile- width 800 - RF 30 - mixdown AAC 64kbps mono...(78,700,734 bytes)

Please understand the original file (1280x720, 24min) was ~525MB; it wouldn't even play smoothly on
either of my netbooks. (intro exceeds 32000kbps) Using the HQ settings listed above, the first 48secs
consumed more than 40MB while the video average is 10.5MB/min. (Peak >= 8000kbps sustained and
up to 16000kbps burst, File Avg ~1400kbps) Using the LQ settings further reduced size by a factor of
three, but the file is no longer suitable for viewing on a PC at that quality.

Lessons learned:
1) The Echo appears fully compliant with standard .m4v, h.264 High Profile Part 3.1, up to 1280x720
2) Sustained and bursting bit-rates (8000/16000) are good, and there's no need for a target bit-rate
3) Longish alphanumeric filenames work just fine, and you can use any folder you want
4) Don't make your files larger than 2GB, their bitrates would probably be too high anyway
5) Suddenly, there may be a good reason to invest in one of those 32GB MicroSDHC cards....

To those of you who love your multimedia, I hope this helps.
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