Content Authoring - Videos

One of the most effective delivery methods for training content is through the use of Videos. Videos can be hosted in your LMS directly in the Video learning object type. The following guide will outline a few best practices and considerations for preparing your Video content for Learners.

This article is focused on the Video file uploaded as a Learning Object. For more information about configuring Video Subtitles or Transcription click here.

Video File Size

The maximum file size for a Video Learning Object is 2GB.

video_format.png

 

Recommended Encoding Settings

The following contain the recommended settings for a Video Learning Object

Container Audio Codec Video Codec Frame Rate Bitrate Video Resolution Aspect Ratio

MP4.

  • No Edit Lists

 

Video Authoring Advisory

  • Ensure your file names do not contain apostrophes or special characters. Using these may produce errors or unexpected results when attempting to upload into your portal.
  • Different video publishing software will have varying degrees of control over your output settings, but we can recommend a few free tools:
    • Handbrake: This is a great video transcoder (anything in/anything out) that will allow you very granular control over the various video settings discussed in this article. While not officially recommended by Absorb LMS, this is our go-to tool here at Absorb Help Desk.
    • MediaInfo: MediaInfo is a great file analysis tool for determine exactly how your videos have been encoded.
  • When using the URL Source for a Video Learning Object, add Videos sourcing from Vimeo or Wistia as an Object Learning Object instead of a Video Learning Object. This may change in the future.

 

Encoding Information

When rendering a Video for the web, keep in mind the access and internet connectivity of your userbase. If you want high speed playback on a wide variety of devices, and across varying network speeds a standard quality video may be better suited for your use-case. If it is essential a User watch the Video Lesson in 4k, make sure their IT environment is prepared for the demands of that experience.

 

Container

The recommended Container for a Video Learning Object is MP4.

A Video Container is a file format that stores digital multimedia data, including video, audio, and subtitles. It is also known as a multimedia container or wrapper. The container format is responsible for holding together compressed video files and transporting the video content. Some of the most common video container formats include MP4, MKV, and AVI3.

Containers are different from codecs. Codecs are responsible for compressing and decompressing the video and audio data within the container. Containers can hold metadata and subtitles, among other things, but some can only hold audio and video elements.

Absorb officially supports H.264-encoded MP4 and WEBM videos.

 

Audio Codec

The recommended Audio Codec for a Video Learning Object is AAC-LC.

An Audio Codec is a computer program that compresses and decompresses digital audio data according to a given audio file or streaming media audio coding format. Codecs are used to reduce the storage space and bandwidth required for audio files or streaming media. Some examples of Audio Codecs include MP3, AAC, and FLAC.

 

Video Codec

The recommended Video Codec for a Video Learning Object is H.264.

A Video Codec is a software or hardware that compresses and decompresses digital video data. It is responsible for encoding and decoding video data into a compressed format to reduce the amount of storage space required for the video file. Codecs are used to compress video data by removing redundant information and encoding the remaining information in a more efficient way. Some examples of Video Codecs include H.264, MPEG-4, and VP9.

Absorb does not support any Video Codecs other than H.264 / AVC.

 

Frame Rate

Video Frame Rate is the number of frames that are displayed per second. It is usually expressed as frames per second (fps). The higher the Frame Rate, the smoother and more realistic the video will look. The most common Frame Rates are 24 fps, 30 fps, and 60 fps.

The following table summarizes the recommended Frame Rates for different types of videos:

Frame Rate Recommended Use
16 fps Recreating the look of silent era movies
24 fps The most cinematic look
30 fps Used by TV and excellent for live sports
60 fps Walking, candles being blown out, etc.
120 fps People running, nature videography, etc.
240 fps Balloons exploding, water splashes, etc.
480 fps Skateboard tricks, skiing, surfing, etc.


It’s important to note that the Frame Rate can greatly impact the style and viewing experience of a video. Different Frame Rates yield different viewing experiences, and choosing a Frame Rate often means thinking about multiple factors, such as how realistic you want your video to look and whether you plan to use slow-motion or motion-blur effects.

 

Bitrate

The recommended Bitrate for a Video Learning Object is a Variable Bitrate (VBR).

Video Bitrate is the amount of data that is transmitted per second from your device to an online platform. It is measured in bits per second (bps) and determines the quality of your video and how much data will be used to play it. Bitrate is calculated using the formula:

 

Frequency x bit depth x channels = Bitrate

 

There are two types of bitrates: CBR and VBR. CBR stands for Constant Bitrate and compresses each frame in your video at the same effort, regardless of the amount of information in the frame. CBR encoding may prevent hiccup playbacks when streaming videos with constant frames and similar motion levels, like news reports.

VBR stands for Variable Bitrate and compresses each individual frame differently based on the amount of information in the frame. The encoder will automatically adjust the Bitrate of every frame. This type of Bitrate is ideal for dynamic video content such as music concerts or sports events. VBR may produce a smaller video size following encoding.

The higher the Bitrate, the more information is conveyed per second, resulting in a higher quality video. However, higher Bitrates also mean larger file sizes and require faster internet connections to stream or upload the video.

 

Resolution

The recommended Resolution for a Video Learning Object is 1080p.

Video Resolution is the number of pixels contained in each frame of a video. It is measured by the number of pixels arranged by width and height on a screen or an image. The more pixels, the higher the quality of the video.

The following table lists some of the most popular standard Video Resolutions and their pixel size:

Resolution Pixel Size
360p 640 x 360
480p 640 x 480
720p 1280 x 720
1080p 1920 x 1080
1440p 2560 x 1440
2160p 3840 x 2160
4320p 7680 x 4320


It is important to note that the Resolution can greatly impact the quality and file size of a video. Higher Resolutions result in larger file sizes and require faster internet connections to stream or upload the video.

 

Aspect Ratio 

The recommended Aspect Ratio for a Video Learning Object is 16:9.

The Video Aspect Ratio is the proportional relationship between the width and height of a video frame. It describes the shape of the video frame and is expressed as two numbers separated by a colon, such as 16:9 or 4:3. The first number represents the width of the frame, while the second number represents the height of the frame.

The most common Aspect Ratio for video is 16:9, also known as widescreen. It is used for television, movies, and most online video platforms. The 4:3 Aspect Ratio was once standard, but it is now mostly used for older content. Other Aspect Ratios, such as 21:9 for ultrawide screens and 1:1 for square videos, are also becoming more popular.

 

Profile/Level

The recommended Profile for a Video Learning Object is a High.

In the context of video encoding, a Profile is a set of constraints that define a specific subset of features and capabilities that an encoder can use when compressing a video. A Profile specifies the maximum resolution, frame rate, and bit rate that a decoder may use.

For example, the H.264 standard defines several profiles, including the Baseline, Main, and High profiles. The Baseline Profile is the most widely supported and is used for video conferencing and mobile applications. The Main Profile is used for standard-definition digital television and DVD. The High Profile is used for high-definition television and Blu-ray discs.

A Level is another set of constraints that define the maximum values for certain parameters, such as the maximum video resolution, maximum bit rate, and maximum frame rate.

For example, the H.264 standard defines several levels, including Level 1, Level 1b, Level 1.1, Level 1.2, and so on. Each level specifies a maximum value for each parameter, and a decoder must be capable of decoding video that meets the constraints of the level 1.

 

References

This document references the following documents:

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