I am impressed with your w


I am impressed with your website – very well done.

1. Are my assumptions correct about lossiness, file formats, and picture dimensions?

You can edit MP4 directly on the timeline, but I recommend that you do a DV intermediate (.avi). Do all your editing on the avi file then when you’re finished encode your output file in mp4. (The encode options are misplaced in the “render as” menu).

2. Will my computer even be able to handle this? If not, can I get away with just buying a new video card?

Your computer should be able to handle this easily, especially if you make an avi intermediate. Why would you need a new display card?

3. Do you think my final product will be acceptable in that format and size both for viewing on a computer or on a tv screen?

A TV screen is a native 640×480 display. It is also probably good enough for downloading. Larger video sizes would only look marginally better but take a lot longer to download. I woulf reconsider this plan, or offer two download options.

Do you have any advice on the best settings to use when rendering the
project files to get good quality with a reasonable file size?

If you intend the video to be downloaded before playing, then your larger form factors will be OK, but consider what the user has for a PC. Again, I think 640×480 should be just fine. If you intend the files to be displayed progressively as they are downloaded, then 640×40 is the largest I would go. The filesize is directly determined by the bitrate. You will have to determine for yourself what bitrate to use because the quality is inversely proportional to the bitrate.

I’ve had some confusion in the past over rectangular vs. square pixels.
I don’t want the image to look distorted. How can I avoid this? Are
there input settings and output settings I need to be aware of so I
don’t screw this up? (Again, I want it to look right on the computer
and also if outputted to a tv screen.)

The CRT TV uses rectangular pixels. Everything else is square. Plan on a square world, and if your user has an older CRT TV, then the image will be slightly out of round. Live with it.

6. Finally, should I render
the files differently depending on whether they will be individual
digital downloads, or tracks on a traditional DVD?

Depends on how you plan to deliver them. If it’s by progressive download, then I would encode (not render) each lesson separately.

If you have read all this, I thank you thank you thank you! I know
this is a tall order from someone who is completely new to the forum.
But, like I said, if you are inclined to help me, I’ll truly appreciate
it. I’ll even give you credit as an advisor on the project if you want,
though I can’t imagine it would do much for your career, lol.

Thanks, I would appreciate the credit. Especially if I could get a backlink from your site. Don’t be afraid of asking for advice here, or on the Sony Vegas forums.

Steve Mann
MannMade Digital Video

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