Large Video Best Practices: Why Are Video Files so Large?

Why Are Video Files Supersized in the 2020s?

There are many factors in play when creating media content. Creators are at a point where HD doesn’t hit the high standards mark, and people are always seeking the best possible result when it comes to media content quality. With this in mind, when creating your development plan, you need to take into account the size of the video files you will be creating and how you will transfer them globally to your team and audiences.

It’s safe to say that if you are diving into this blog post, you are a creator. The purpose of this post is to provide new or extended information to creators within the broadcast industry. We want to highlight the continuous increase in video file sizes as well as solutions on how to manage this growth without losing quality or data.

A Large Video File Transfer Solution for Live TV and the Broadcasting Industry

Let’s bust the myth that you need to compress your video files before transferring them. There are solutions available within the broadcast industry that allow you to utilize your large video files, even when working within a remote production team. Today we will dissect what goes into the swelling of these video files and how you can estimate the size of your project and its transfer time.

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How Long are Video Files?

While creating a storyboard for your content, one of the first things to consider is the length of your media file. Are you:

  • Developing a full-length feature?
  • Filming an hours-long live event?
  • Creating an eLearning video course?

This factor plays a large role in determining your file size as it is the framework of your content. Naturally, the shorter the duration, the smaller the video size can be estimated to be.

Consider Your Video Resolution

Are you after the top of line sharpness level, 8K or 4K? Or are your standards lower for your piece of content? These are questions you must always ask yourself at the beginning of your project.

It’s important to know your desired video resolution before you begin filming as you may need to acquire specific tools to make your content the quality level you want. For example, you may need to purchase specific cameras, editing tools, and transferring software. There are tools available to provide you with multiple resolution options. FileCatalyst solutions allow you to work without limiting your creative flow as you can transfer your supersized video files globally at accelerated rates. Video quality ultimately impacts your video file size through pixels, the higher your film quality the more pixels make up the image. Higher qualities result in larger file sizes, and the larger file sizes result in more difficulties when transferring them.

Video File Formats

The format of your video also plays a large role in your video file size. There are two main components to video format: codec and containers.

Codecs refer to the process of how the file is compressed and a container indicates how the video file is held together and displays that through the type of file extension it has (e.g. .mov, .mp4, .avi, etc.) There are several complications that can occur if you compress your large video file. Let’s say you produced a two hour 8K video, to make it a smaller video file, you would have to compress the file. In this process, there is a high probability of data loss.

The website Video Maker states, “Video compression applications work by looking for redundancies in a frame and maintain them frame to frame. For example, one bit of blue sky is the same as another bit of blue sky. The blue section carries through each frame. At high compression rates, this becomes obvious.”

Solutions that eliminate the need for compression while working on a project are highly beneficial. Your full quality remains intact and transfer wait times are practically non-existent.

Video Frame Rate

A quick way to analyze the video size you are working with is by knowing the Frames Per Second (FPS). The higher the FPS the better the quality of your video. Below we have shared a cheat sheet we created to assist you with the concept.

For the purpose of our chart, let’s assume a standard frame rate of 25 fps compressed using a BluRay H.264 codec to produce a .mp4 file.

So now that you have an estimate of how large your video file will be, let’s get you set up with an understanding of how long it will take you to transfer it.

It doesn’t matter if you are an enterprise or a start-up, the fact is when producing video files, there are always other teammates involved. When leveraging FileCatalyst products you will have a transparent method of transferring your video files. Before receiving a calculated transfer time slot you will need to know three factors.

  1. Distance: How far your data is being transferred
  2. Latency: Refers to the delay in transferring or processing data
  3. Bandwidth: The maximum transferring rate of a network or internet connection. The combination of how much can be transferred in a specific amount of time

Resolution Video File Sizes

Go to our exclusive FileCatalyst file transfer calculator to receive a tailored time proposal for your video file transfer.

The fact is we are living in the age of advanced technology and image resolutions will continue to grow in quality because people will continue to demand it. Resolution trends will develop because it is a trend and allows for new tools to be created. Supersized video files will always have to be accommodated and hopefully, now you have a better grasp on why they are large sizes, how to estimate your video file size, and what solutions can help you transfer them.

Transferring Large Video Files Can be Simple

Have we left any of your questions unanswered? Discover much more on how to transfer these supersized video files in our follow-up blog post, How Big Are Movie Files?


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