Recommended streaming video specifications

Streaming video specifications: introduction

For streaming video purposes, MediaStore uses the H.264/MPEG-4 Part 10 AVC (MP4) standard, a common format for online streaming.

If any other format is uploaded and used as a Marketing Asset, our system will attempt to transcode it to the correct format automatically. The amount of time this transcoding will take depends on the source format and properties (codec, duration, resolution, audio tracks) as well as the current volume of transcoding jobs handled by our system. In case your video cannot be transcoded, rest assured that we monitor these transcodings and will reach out to you.

Streaming video specifications: details

Below are the detailed properties of our recommended video format. Please especially ensure that the resolution and bitrate match the image size and correspond to one another, and that the file is streamable (file header up front).

  • General settings
    • Container: MPEG-4
    • File extension: .mp4
    • File header setup: optimized for streaming  – the file header (moov atom) is positioned at the start of the file, preceding the data stream (mdat). To enable optimization for streaming, most encoding software includes a setting such as Web optimized, Hinted, Streamable or similar.
  • Video settings
    • Codec: MPEG-4 Layer 10 (H.264/AVC)
    • Level: High or Main Profile at Level 3.1 (SD), 4.0 or 4.1 (HD). Level 4.2 and higher are not supported.
    • Resolution (please adjust according to image size):
      • HD 1080p: 1920 x 1080
      • HD 720p: 1280 x 720
      • SD 480p: 16:9: 854 x 480 / 4:3: 640 x 480
      • SD 360p: 16:9: 640 x 360 / 4:3: 480 x 360 (not recommended due to low resolution)
    • Aspect ratio: 16:9 or (for SD only) 4:3
    • Pixel aspect ratio: 1:1 (non-anamorphic). SD video is often encoded anamorphically by default; please check any files that may be affected before uploading them, and transcode them using a non-anamorphic target resolution. In some cases, this must be achieved by manually adjusting the target resolution to correct the aspect ratio.
    • Frame rate: no specific frame rate is required; common values are:
      • 25p (PAL)
      • 24p / 30p (NTSC)
    • Bitrate (please adjust according to image size):
      • HD 1080p: 3.5 Mbit/s
      • HD 720p: 1.8 Mbit/s
      • SD 480p: 1.0 – 1.2 Mbit/s
      • SD 360p: 0.7 Mbit/s (not recommended due to low resolution)
      • Variable bitrate (VBR)
      • Maximum bitrate: no more than 200% of nominal bitrate
      • Use 2-pass encoding for optimal results
    • Further settings for improved file size/quality ratio:
      • I-frame/key frame frequency: at least every 5 seconds
      • Reference frames: 3
      • Mixed reference: On
      • B-frames: 5
      • Adaptive B-frames: Optimal
      • Weighted B-frames: On
      • Direct prediction: Automatic
      • Motion estimation method: Uneven multi-hexagon
      • Motion estimation range: 64
      • Subpixel motion estimation: 7
      • Trellis: 2
      • CABAC entropy encoding: On
      • No fast p-skip: On
  • Audio settings
    • Codec: AAC – we recommend HE-AAC v2 (Enhanced AAC+)
    • Bitrate (please adjust according to image size):
      • HD: 96 kbit/s per channel – i.e. commonly 192 kbit/s stereo
      • SD: 64 kbit/s per channel – i.e. commonly 128 kbit/s stereo
      • Constant bitrate (CBR)
    • Sample rate: 48 kHz
If you’re looking for a free solution to encode your video files to the correct specifications, we recommend Handbrake.

Master files in the XDCAM HD422 or IMX50 PAL standard formats can be transcoded to screening files through a Transcode Order. Please select one of the H.264 HD (Online Screener) transcoding profiles when entering your Transcode Order; the streaming file will automatically be added to the content after transcoding has finished.

mediapeers offers bulk transcoding services if you’d like to upload a large volume of screeners into the system that do not yet match our recommended format. Please contact us for availability and pricing.

Streaming video specifications: uploading video with watermarking

As our system will superimpose an overlay or burn-in a custom watermark in some streaming scenarios (such as Personalized Recommendations), the space you may use for any generic watermark is restricted to a section towards the bottom of the image. This restriction primarily serves to avoid any overlap between the watermark you provide and any which may be added later. Please see this image for more information:

Preferred location for a generic watermark

Preferred location for a generic watermark