Youtube Quality

WingManGT

Wannabie Member
Jan 16, 2017
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Varna, Bulgaria
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2004 Kawasaki ZX-6r
What software are you using for the edits? Today I did a quick edit with Movie Maker, and the quality is subpar and blocky. My previous video I've used Adobe Premiere Elements and it turned out great. Both are in my channel, I'm exporting in H.264 and native resolution and FPS.

p.s. I still haven't started vlogging, need to finalize the setup, so these are just test videos for the time being. The Ski trip was with Premiere, the motorcycle vid was with Movie Maker (it sucks).
 

BehindBars

bikes <3
Sep 14, 2016
154
76
28
Buckinghamshire, UK
I ride a
2006 Kawasaki ER-6F
how do you change this on a GoPro?
These are all output settings for your editing software

What software are you using for the edits? Today I did a quick edit with Movie Maker, and the quality is subpar and blocky. My previous video I've used Adobe Premiere Elements and it turned out great. Both are in my channel, I'm exporting in H.264 and native resolution and FPS.

p.s. I still haven't started vlogging, need to finalize the setup, so these are just test videos for the time being. The Ski trip was with Premiere, the motorcycle vid was with Movie Maker (it sucks).
I use Premiere Elements 14 and its great. Movie Maker isn't worth the hard drive space, only useful for people making slideshows really. Stick to Adobe and you'll be fine
 

DorkyRoad

Riding Nerdy
Feb 13, 2017
127
79
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40
Oregon
I ride a
Honda CB500F
Honda CRF250L
Thanks for the advice guys. My videos have been lower quality on YT than on my computer so I'm going to try tweaking some of these settings.
 
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ClarkBrent

Wannabie Member
Apr 4, 2017
25
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8
I ride a
ZX6R
It's funny, I just registered on this forum to get tips on the same topic. I actually know a decent bit about editing, encoding, and video streaming services (I work in IT at an Art School, and my father edited professionally for 20 years), but I know next to nothing when it comes to how YouTube encoding itself works. There also doesn't seem to be a lot of technical data/information about YouTube's back end encoding system either other than their basic suggestions (Which are rubbish IMO for high bitrate videos that motovloggers tend to put out). So far, here is what I have discovered, and it seems very contradictory to what a lot of people say ("Use the highest bitrate you can, and let YouTube down convert it!!"), but makes sense if you look at it from the sense that YouTube is really providing a free service to content uploaders (More on this in a sec if you're thinking about the ad revenue they get):

1. Higher Bitrate does not always equal better quality on YouTube's end.

What I have personally seen is when I upload VBS 2x pass at 45Mbps min/60Mbps max (FYI, these are the max bitrates for a GoPro 4 Hero Black with Protune turned on in case anyone is Googling for that right now, and stumbles upon this) with max render quality on 6-8min vids (Generally 1.5-1.8GB file size), the quality tends to deteriorate quite a bit from something lower like 15-20Mbps. While the quality of the local video file may look quite a bit better on higher bitrate video, once YouTube encodes it, the higher bitrate file seems to blur/chunk the video stream in the faster movement/higher data stream scenes compared to the lower bitrate video. I think this may be because YouTube's upload/encoding algorithm has a target file size that it tries to hit, and automatically encodes the video with settings that it estimates will hit that file size as well as the least server intensive encoding settings.

What does this mean? It means it's easier for a smaller video file to stay close to the same bitrate/settings that you encoded originally the first time around. Compare that 500-600MB file to the higher bitrate 1.5GB-1.8GB file that YouTube will have to squish who knows what way to hit the target size. This is all speculation as I have no idea if YouTube actually has a target file size it tries to encode to, but it sure seems like it based off the dozen or so upload tests I've done at various bitrates. Also, don't forget, YouTube offers the upload service for free, and has to pay to store the content somewhere. Sure, they make ad revenue, but probably not much from people like us motovloggers who have huge files, and a small subscriber base.


2. I'm really curious to know if YouTubers with higher subscriber counts/high view time get a higher encoding setting(s)/higher bitrate.

I've noticed most of the YouTubers (Motovloggers specifically) who have over 30k+ subscribers tend to have way better quality videos than some of the other stuff I've seen out there. I used to think it was just due to experience, and the know how. Since I started uploading though, I've talked first hand with a number of high sub and low sub motovloggers, and can't make heads or tails what is actually going on once people start uploading to YouTube.

Most of the high sub motovloggers I've talked to use bitrates anywhere in the 12-20Mbps min range, VBS 2x pass, max render quality, etc, but their video quality is crystal clear on YouTube. While a few of the other low sub motovloggers I've talked to upload a video with either higher or similar encoding settings, the quality is inconsistent as hell. I notice on my videos the pavement/street tends to pixelate a lot, and is generally potato quality. I have some examples of this on my channel. My first vid I posted is low bitrate "But Better Quality" (20Mbps min/20Mbps max, VBS 2x pass, max settings), and my latest vid is high bitrate "Potato Quality"(45Mbps min/60Mbps, VBS 2x pass, max settings).

Can anyone fill my knowledge gaps with answers? I would love to get more insight into this whole YouTube encoding mess.
 
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PhilTonic

English Kraut
Aug 17, 2014
59
16
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KTM 690 SMC
One more jigsaw piece:

Footage from a Sony FDR-X3000, native 60Mbps, rendered at 60Mbps looks great.
Footage from a Drift Ghost-S, native 30Mbps, rendered at 60Mpbs does look the same as if rendered at 30Mbps.

I upload Sony 60Mbps files, which I know is overkill. But it looks a hell of a lot better than my older Drift footage. Seems to be the same for all Drift using motovloggers I'm aware of. Most of the big guys use GoPros and you can really see the difference.

Baron has 200k+ subs and sometimes his video quality is pure smudge, too.
 
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ClarkBrent

Wannabie Member
Apr 4, 2017
25
13
8
I ride a
ZX6R
One more jigsaw piece:

Footage from a Sony FDR-X3000, native 60Mbps, rendered at 60Mbps looks great.
Footage from a Drift Ghost-S, native 30Mbps, rendered at 60Mpbs does look the same as if rendered at 30Mbps.

I upload Sony 60Mbps files, which I know is overkill. But it looks a hell of a lot better than my older Drift footage. Seems to be the same for all Drift using motovloggers I'm aware of. Most of the big guys use GoPros and you can really see the difference.

Baron has 200k+ subs and sometimes his video quality is pure smudge, too.
Not sure about the Hero 5's, but the 4 Blacks are at 30Mbps by default. So I don't think it's necessarily GoPros capturing footage at higher bitrates. If you enable Pro Tune, it jumps to 45Mbps, but you'll need to do a little bit of setup depending on how bright/dark it will be outside when you capture footage.

Regardless of all of that, I was still uploading poo quality video even though the local rendered videos were crystal clear quality. It definitely seems to be a game of finding a good median between high bitrate and low file size.
 

HippoDrone

Admin
Jan 2, 2017
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2012 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone
Not sure about the Hero 5's, but the 4 Blacks are at 30Mbps by default. So I don't think it's necessarily GoPros capturing footage at higher bitrates. If you enable Pro Tune, it jumps to 45Mbps, but you'll need to do a little bit of setup depending on how bright/dark it will be outside when you capture footage.

Regardless of all of that, I was still uploading poo quality video even though the local rendered videos were crystal clear quality. It definitely seems to be a game of finding a good median between high bitrate and low file size.
so if I turn off protune on my 5 it'll drop to 30Mbs? My editing software will only render 1080p/60fps at a max of 30Mbs so this may be my issue, utilising protune my bitrate exceeds the ability of my editing software for MP4 files
 

ClarkBrent

Wannabie Member
Apr 4, 2017
25
13
8
I ride a
ZX6R
so if I turn off protune on my 5 it'll drop to 30Mbs? My editing software will only render 1080p/60fps at a max of 30Mbs so this may be my issue, utilising protune my bitrate exceeds the ability of my editing software for MP4 files
No, I would definitely keep down converting your bitrate from 45Mbps to 30Mbps on your local files since you want to give your encoder as much data as possible to play with. If the quality looks good on the files that your editing software is spitting out after encoding, but looks like poo when you upload to YouTube, it's definitely YouTube's encoder screwing the pooch.

I think what YouTube is doing is automatically adjusting it's upload encoding settings to hit a target file size. It wouldn't surprise me to find out that YouTube has a file size target of 100MB where your original file might be 1GB+. So YouTube might down convert your bitrate from 30Mbps to like 5Mbps to hit that file size limit.
 
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AmpdMoto

Check Me Out on Youtube
Aug 28, 2015
141
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I ride a
Harley Davidson VRod
I render at 1080p 60fps with H.264 codec usually at full bitrate target of 45mbps and max of 50mbps, but realistically to get best results with file size, render time, and quality you should us a target bitrate of 16mbps and a max of 50mbps.

Youtube has no limit but they will compress less if the file and bitrate is smaller.
 

Superballs

Superballs' Supervids
Jul 16, 2017
222
143
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39
Windsor, Ontario, Canada
I ride a
1999 VFR800Fi
I've spent years doing fireworks videos.

Editing software is much better at compressing video than Youtube is.

For videos meant for youtube, export the file at 12-13mbit/s or esle YouTube will mangle it.

If you are exporting for multiple uses, you can set two settings and queue them in Premiere Pro, then let it fly and go to bed, wake up in the morning and there will be both copies.

Another trick to circumvent their bitrate caps would be to upscale the video from 1080p to 4K, I think their bitrate limits for 4k are something like 20-25mbit/s

It won't be true 4K of course, but it will look a lot more like what 1080p should look like.
 

2WV

@2WheelVandal
Feb 25, 2017
482
250
43
South England
I ride a
A motorcycle, silly.
Decent thread guys! i will try some the things mentioned here as i have also had some issues with youtube and quality
 

Mark

Our Scenic Life
Sep 15, 2017
25
29
18
52
Ohio, USA
www.oursceniclife.com
I ride a
2014 Canam Spyder RT
Excellent recommendations here, I have noticed a swing in quality from video to video after it's uploaded. No apparent reason because my encoding has remained consistent.
 
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