Friday, March 28, 2008

Video Sharing Sites Compared

You might have noticed that I started using a different service to host my videos on this blog. I've been looking for something better than Google Video and YouTube to host my videos. So I did some research, compared the services, and found a service that I really like.

I uploaded the same video to test each of these services, and here are the results.

Google Video

video
YouTube quality. This is what I've been using previously. The bitrate is low and the frame size is small.

Blip.tv



I've heard that these are the best guys to go through for high-quality video hosting. And they are not bad. The quality per frame is the highest out of any of these services that I've tested, and they also change the aspect ratio of the movie player so there's no letter boxing for my widescreen videos. The big problem is they dropped the frame rate to reduce bandwidth. That's a big bummer, and is why I decided not to use their service. You can enable advertising (which is off be default), and they do the 50/50 split of ad revenue just like Revver.

Revver


I've heard about these guys because of the ad revenue sharing, the 50/50 split from ad revenue they make off your movie. The frame size is really good, but I don't like the letter boxing. The big problem I have with it are the ads during and at the end of the video, and you can't seem to disable them.

Vimeo



BlenderNation uses this service a lot, so I gave it a try. The bitrate is good, the video player is at the right aspect ratio, and my favorite part is that the interface goes away shortly after it starts, only showing you the movie. There's parameters that you can set when you create the embed code that changes the way the video player looks, like the color of the buttons, if the movie title is displayed or not, and what size. They also host the original video file that I uploaded as well.

Now, this is a standard sized video. If you upload a video that's 1280x720 or better, Vimeo can stream it as a HD. Just click on the full screen button and there it is. I've uploaded one of the CMC ads so you can see how it looks.


Watch "CMC Ad 1" in HD

Well, apparently you can't embed HD content; it has to be viewed from their web site. So click on the link underneath the video to see it in HD, streamed right to your web browser. You can also check out other HD videos at Vimeo HD.

The only problem I have with Vimeo is the comments screen at the end of the video. It's florescent orange! I tried to see if there's a parameter that turns that off, or at least changes the color of the background, but I found no such option. If you watch the video on the Vimeo site the player doesn't do that; the code is the same, but if the video is displayed on a site other than Vimeo it will appear.

Regardless, Vimeo is the winner, and I've already replaced most of my videos on the blog with that service. I'm so glad I don't have to use Google Video anymore.

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