The 10 Best Video Formats along with a selection guide

Video Format

If you’re a video enthusiast, you’ve no doubt already encountered a few video formats related problems. Maybe you’ve tried to upload a video to YouTube and it’s giving you an error.

Perhaps you’ve downloaded a video and you can’t play it because your player doesn’t support the particular format. Or maybe you’re just curious about what formats are best for you.

In any case, I think you’ll find this post to be of great use. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at the most popular video formats and tell you a little bit about each.

What is Video File Formats and How It works?

A video file format is a type of storage media that stores digital video. Common video file formats are MP4, MOV, and AVI. It is useful to store videos on your computer, phone, or other electronic devices.

It is a container format that stores all the necessary information to play a video, such as the video’s resolution, frame rate, audio track, and duration.

Different types of Video Formats

There are many different types of video formats, and each one has its own benefits and drawbacks.

Some of the most common video formats are as follows along with their advantages and disadvantages.  

H.264

H.264 format helps to create high-quality videos for YouTube, Vimeo and such high definitive platforms.

Advantages

  • H.264 is the most popular video compression format because it offers high quality video while using minimal bandwidth. This makes it a good choice for streaming video over the internet.
  • Additionally, H.264 files are smaller than traditional formats, which makes them easier to store and transfer. It also allows you to play back videos on older devices that don’t support more recent formats.
  • Most of the latest browsers support H.264 format, so you can watch videos on your computer or mobile device with no problems.

Disadvantage

There are a few disadvantages of H.264 file format.

  • One disadvantage is that it can take a lot of time to encode a video using H.264.
  • Another disadvantage is that H.264 files are larger than other file formats.
  • H.264 files also tend to be less efficient when it comes to streaming or downloading.

MPEG-4

MPEG-4 is useful to create videos for television programs for live broadcast, such as on cable TV.

Advantages

Here are the few advantages of MPEG 4 video format

  • It is a video compression format that offers better video quality and file size than the older H.264 format.
  • You can use this format in Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge without any issue.
  • It is a very good choice for streaming services, such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.
  • It also takes up less space on your device than videos encoded in H.264.
  • Mobile devices also use it.

Disadvantages

While MPEG-4 is a popular format, it has some disadvantages that should consider when using it.

  • It is not as efficient as other video formats when it comes to streaming. This means that your video will buffer more frequently and will take longer to load.
  • MPEG-4 files are larger in size than other video formats, which can lead to slower internet speeds.

3GPP

3GPP is a standard format for creating videos that are used on mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets.

The 3GPP file format is a telecommunications industry standard for storing 3G/4G mobile network data. A joint international collaboration between mobile network operators created it in 2004..

Advantages

  • The main advantage of 3GPP format is to provide a common format for transmitting 3G/4G mobile network data.
  • The file format is XML-based, and it is the most popular file format for storing mobile network data.

Disadvantages

  • If you want to share a 3GPP file with someone else, you need to use a special file sharing app. This app is not available on most platforms, and it may not be compatible with their device.
  • Additionally, you may not be able to share the file if the person you’re trying to share it with doesn’t have the app installed.

MOV

Video files in MOV format are popular on smartphones and tablets.

Advantage

  • MOV files are used in video editing applications to create and edit videos.
  • These files are also used in mobile applications to store videos.
  • They often use to upload videos to social media or to share them with friends.
  • MOV files are portable and easy to use. You can easily share them with anyone, and you can also access them from any device.
  • Online advertisements are also frequently created using MOV files.

Disadvantage

  • If you want to watch your videos on a different device, you will need to convert them to a different format.
  • MOV files are also not as widely supported by websites and applications as other file formats.

WVM

With the advent of Virtual Reality, video formats have also undergone a transformation. VR applications do not support the older H.264 and MPEG-4 formats thus WVM comes up in the market.

It is a new video compression format that can maintain a high frame rate while minimizing the amount of data.

Due to their ability to maintain a higher frame rate and offer better compression, WVM (Web Video Mode) is a better format for VR. It can encode 4K video at 30 frames per second.

Advantage

  • WVM files are often used to create small, test versions of Windows systems. This is useful because it allows you to recreate the entire system environment without having to install the entire Windows operating system.
  • This is helpful when you are testing new software or when you are troubleshooting a problem.

Disadvantage

There are several disadvantages to using WVM files.

  • They are not supported by all video players.
  • They are not compatible with media encoding software, such as H.264, as more standard file formats are.
  • They are not as efficient as other file formats when it comes to storage space.

FLV

FLV, or Flash Lite Video, is a popular video format that is used on websites and for mobile applications. FLV is similar to MP4, which is used on smartphones, but it offers more features and is more efficient.

Advantage

  • The FLV file format is a popular video format that is used by many popular video-sharing websites.
  • FLV files are smaller in size than MP4 files and they can be played on a greater number of devices.
  • This file format is also more resilient to file corruption.
  • It is a good format for mobile applications because it is easy to share and download.
  • FLV files can be played on most devices, and they are supported by most browsers.
  • FLV is a great format for websites because it is quick to load and can be streamed without lagging.
  • FLV files are smaller than MP4 files, and they can be played on more devices.

Disadvantage

There are some disadvantages of the FLV file format.

  • It is a relatively new format and is not as commonly supported as some other formats.
  • It is not as efficient as some other formats when it comes to storage space.
  • It takes a long time to convert a FLV file into a playable format.

AVI

AVI is a common video format used on computers. It is a container format that supports compression and can store multiple videos and audio tracks.

Advantage

  • They are often used for recording and streaming videos on the Internet.
  • They can be played on a wide variety of devices.
  • They are also a common format for distributing videos to employees.
  • AVI files are portable, so you can take them with you wherever you go.
  • You can also use AVI files to create motion graphics and videos.
  • AVI files can be played on a variety of media players and devices, including televisions, computers, and portable devices.

Disadvantage

  • AVI files are compressed using the H.264 codec, which is a high-quality compression format. However, H.264 files are large and can take a long time to play.
  • H.264 files are not compatible with all devices like older DVD players. This means that you will have to convert your AVI files to a different format if you want to watch them on a different device.

AVCHD

AVCHD video is used to store high-quality, uncompressed videos. It is similar to HD videos, but it is encoded with more compression which results in a smaller file size.

Advantage

  • This format is perfect for storing videos that you want to keep for a long time since the file size is not as big as MP4 or 3GP videos.
  • AVCHD is used for recording high-definition video.
  • AVCHD files are compressed, which makes them more efficient.
  • They also have a higher quality than H.264 files, and they’re less likely to suffer from compression artifacts. AVCHD files also have a wide range of compatibility.
  • They can be played on a wide range of devices, including Blu-ray players, TVs, and portable devices.
  • They support a wide range of resolutions, and they can be played back at a high frame rate.
  • They’re compatible with a wide range of codecs, which makes them ideal for video editing.

Disadvantage

Here are some disadvantages to using AVCHD.

  • It is not as efficient as other file formats when it comes to compression as your videos will take up more storage space on your computer, and they will also take longer to encode.
  • AVCHD is not as widely supported as other file formats.
  • AVCHD videos are not as compatible with Blu-ray players as other file formats.

WebM

WebM video is a format that combines video and audio content into one file.

WebM is generally considered to be a better format for delivering video online because of its superior compression and playback performance.

Advantage

  • They are supported by most modern web browsers, including Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, and Apple Safari.
  • WebM files are smaller than MP4 files, and they can be played in a more efficient manner.
  • They also have a higher quality than MP4 files.
  • WebM is also use for video sharing and streaming on websites.

Disadvantage

  • WebM file format is not widely supported as MP4.
  • WebM files take up more space on your device than MP4 files.

MKV

MKV is mostly useful to store videos. It is a container format that supports multiple video streams and is also supported by streaming applications.

Advantage

  • It is called a versatile file format.
  • MKV can be played on a wide range of devices, including phones, tablets, and TV sets.
  • MKV is also compatible with a wide range of streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime.
  • MKV files can also be played on DVD players and Blu-ray players.

Disadvantage

  • It is not supported by all devices such as Apple TV and Roku.
  • A few of MKV files are not playable on some devices because they are not compressed properly.
  • MKV files are relatively large compared to other video formats and can take a long time to compress.

What criteria should you consider to choose?

There are a few factors to consider when choosing the right video format for your project.

  • Choose the type of device which you’re planning to use.
  • You’ll want to consider the size of the video.
  • You’ll need to decide the resolution and the frame rate.
  • You’ll have to consider the playback quality as some formats offer better quality than others, so it’s important to choose a format that suits your needs.

FAQs

What are the famous video file format that works for you?

The most popular formats are MP4 and AVI. They are both good formats, but they have different advantages and disadvantages as shown above.

What are the best video format for Websites and Mobile Devices?

According to VideoJug, YouTube’s native video format is MP4, but H.264 is the recommended format for 3GP, 3G2 and iPod. Also, FLV is recommended for BlackBerry.

Let’s wrap things up,

With 10 different video formats featured, I hope that this post gives you a bit more insight into the world of video formats.

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