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Lesson 2. About Digital Video Editing > Understanding video data compression

Understanding video data compression

Editing digital video involves storing, moving, and calculating extremely large volumes of data compared to other kinds of computer files. Many personal computers, particularly older models, are not equipped to handle the high data rates (amount of video information processed each second) and file sizes of uncompressed digital video. Use compression to lower the data rate of digital video into a range that your computer system can handle. Compression settings are most relevant when capturing source video, previewing edits, playing back the Timeline, and exporting the Timeline. Inmany cases, the settings you specify won't be the same for all situations:

  • It's a good idea to compress video coming into your computer. Your goal is to retain as much picture quality as you can for editing, while keeping the data rate within your computer's limits.

  • You should also compress video going out of your computer. Try to achieve the best picture quality for playback. If you're creating a videotape, keep the data rate within the limits of the computer that will play back the video to videotape. If you're creating video to be played back on another computer, keep the data rate within the limits of the computer models you plan to support.


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