Learn what is video encoding

What is video encoding?

The basics

Each encoded video contains three parts: Formats, Codecs and Bitrates. Formats are the file type that is output after the compression. They are what hold the grouping of compressed video. Some common ones are:

Video formats infographic

Codecs are algorithms that allow the video to be compressed. Some common video codecs are VP6 or H.264 which Adobe Flash videos and YouTube use. Bitrates is the amount of data per second. For example, Blueray uses 40 mbit/s while regular DVD uses 5 mbit/s.


Different platforms require different combinations of formats, codecs, and bitrates. Video encoding is the process of converting a video so it can work on any type of platform. First rule of video encoding is that you should try to avoid it at all costs by simply shooting in the right format, but if it is necessary make sure you start with a high quality preferably uncompressed format and go to a lower quality format. This will avoid encoding degradation.


There are two main types of encoding solutions: in-house or cloud. In-house video encoding solutions allows you to manage large files that require a lot of bandwidth quicker than if you had to load it on to a cloud and then encode it. The disadvantage of in-house video encoding solutions is you have to set up and maintain the software. It will often take highly skilled IT staff to properly maintain the system. Some popular in-house video encoding softwares are Handbrake and Format Factory. Handbrake is a free and open-source software available for Windows, OS X and Ubuntu. Format Factory is an ad-supported freeware software that is available for Windows.

Cloud based video encoding systems relieve you from having to maintain the encoder software and hardware. You might be wondering about prices of hiring a third party to take care of your video encoding, but most cloud companies only make you pay for what you use. Some popular cloud based software includes Zencoder and Encoding. These both work on a variety of different systems and are pay as you go.

With Sezion’s cloud-based automatic video editing platform (API, SDKs or even our no-coding-required tools) the encoding process is included in our solution and is really easy to manage. This will help you safe time and money when thinking about a unified platform for your online video effort and developement.

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