QuickTime blows in so many ways, and everyone in the video know has known this for eons, since the 90s. It is from the same caste as RealVideo. Much better options have come along, but by far the most workable is the mpeg4-based Xvid (or the predecessor Divx), which can be thought of as “the mp3 of the video world”. Especially since they are both technically mpeg standards. (Though for high-def movie and show distribution, h.264 MKV is the shit. But it’s not as workable with as much software, unlike AVI.) (When I do VOB->AVI encoding for movies these days, I use h.264.)

Anyway… I was a bit aghast that my new camera takes videos in QuickTime. I wish the video codec could be changed at the firmware level. That would be nice. MPC (Media Player Classic) can’t even play the video files out of my camera, only VLC Player. And MPC works for most stuff (though not nearly as much as VLC, which plays just about anything in existence.)

So I wanted a simple command that I could execute to convert all the videos in a folder without ever having to think again — to just type “convert-camera-videos” in a folder of new stuff off my camera. Easy enough:

convert-camera-videos.bat (requires 4NT to use @NAME):

for %%1 in (*.mov) call mov2avi.bat "%%1" "%@NAME[%%1] (xvid).avi"
call deprecate *.mov

The first line uses “mov2avi.bat”, which is:

echo using fixed_quant=4
echo ...... 1-3=very little improvement/huge files
echo ...... 4-5=good for high qual vid
echo ...... 31=lowest
mencoder %1 -ovc xvid -oac mp3lame -xvidencopts fixed_quant=4 -o %2

^^ Note that I left some comments in there should I decide to change the quality to make my files smaller. In fact, I had to change fixed_quant to 11 to get the videos small enough to work with my command-line Flickr API uploader.

The 2nd line uses “deprecate.bat” which is really not required. Deprecate is simply a bat I have to rename files to “.deprecated”. It’s my way of deleting something without deleting it. I frequently deprecate photos that I don’t really want in my collection, but that I don’t want to delete either. It helps my data hoarding by allowing me a way to remove things from thigns without having to actually delete them.


@echo off
set NOQUOTES=%@STRIP[%=",%1]
ren "%NOQUOTES" "%NOQUOTES.deprecated"
unset /q NOQUOTES

Anyway — From now on, no more bullshit QuickTime for me! Xvid only! And if I feel my files are too big, I can always raise the value of fixed_quant in mov2avi.bat.

Mood: full of chicken tikka masala and classic greek swiss chard
Music: Agent Orange – What’s The Combination?