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Recording in H.264 or H.265?
2102 9 2023-9-20
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Koensol
lvl.2
Netherlands
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Hello,

So I'm in doubt about which of the two options I should use for recording with my DJI Osmo Action 3. I have been reading up a lot about the difference between H.264 and H.265. I know H.264 is the 'tried and true' old standard which is compatible with most media and devices, and that H.265 is the newer version which has more efficiënt compression but is more taxing on your PC and editing software. And I have been reading a lot of conflicting information. Some sources say H.265 retains more detail, resulting in a higher quality video, while others say that the quality should be the same, and that it's more a question of storage/file size and being able to export at a lower bitrate.

So my questions are:
1. Is there an actual quality difference between the two when the video is uploaded to youtube? If so, how big of a difference?
2. If the answer is H.265 is the better quality option, will my PC be able to handle playing it/editing with it? I will give some information below about my PC specs, what I intend to shoot in and what I intend to use my footage for.
  • I intend to record in 4k with mainly 30 fps. There will be some higher fps clips for slow motion, but my edit timeline will be 30 fps.
  • I will be recording a travel video during my 1 year travel adventure, and plan to upload to Youtube.
  • At the moment, I own two 256gb micro sd cards for storage, which I will be taking with me on the journey.
  • I use the free version of Davince Resolve for editing
  • My relevant pc specs are as follows:
- Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
- Intel Core i7-4790 CPU
- 16GB RAM
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970
- 4GB VRAM

3. Which of the two options would you guys recommend?

Thanks in advance for any input!

2023-9-20
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osmonauta
Captain
Hungary
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You said you’ve been reading A LOT about both, what the differences are, etc. In which case what exactly are you hoping to hear that you haven’t already read about?

You are asking a lot of questions like what are the quality differences between the two? Which one will have better quality on YT? Which one will tax more your laptop during editing? Etc.

I have some questions, too. Since you have the camera and you also have a laptop, have you actually tried recording footage using both? Have you looked at the quality of the footage on your laptop? What did you see? I don’t know what did you see, only you are the one who can tell. Which one looked better? Did you see a difference? Have you uploaded both to YT and looked at it? Which one looked better? Have you seen a difference between the two on YT? Have you tried editing both to see which one is more taxing on your computer?

If you have already read A LOT about all these and you have tried all of the above, I’d say you must’ve come to some sort of conclusion. In which case what have you concluded?

Just curious.
2023-9-20
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Koensol
lvl.2
Netherlands
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osmonauta Posted at 9-20 09:34
You said you’ve been reading A LOT about both, what the differences are, etc. In which case what exactly are you hoping to hear that you haven’t already read about?

You are asking a lot of questions like what are the quality differences between the two? Which one will have better quality on YT? Which one will tax more your laptop during editing? Etc.

Thanks for your reply. Well like I said, I have been reading a lot of conflicting information, some of it might be dated too idk... I'm really new to this and it's still very confusing to me because I don't actually understand half of what I read if I'm perfectly honest. So I am looking for up-to-date informed opinions of other people who could maybe confirm some stuff, so I can stop overanalysing this.

I have been testing, yes. So far I haven't seen any drastic differences, but to be honest, I'm not sure if that is because there is no difference, or because I have done something wrong in editing/settings in davinci, etc.

I am just looking to get the most out of my footage that I can, given my hardware. And because I am leaving in 20 days already, I'm just asking to be sure. I only have 1 chance to get the right recordings. I don't feel experienced enough yet to make an accurate judgement on this particular subject.
2023-9-20
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DJI Paladin
Administrator
Flight distance : 318 ft

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Hi there. Thank you for reaching out. Here are the differences between the two codecs:

What is H.264?
H.264, known as Advanced Video Coding (AVC), is a video codec that was released in 2003. Many video streaming services, such as YouTube and Netflix, use this codec today. H.264 was designed to provide high-quality video compression while maintaining a low bit rate, which is why it is ideal for streaming videos over the Internet.

What is H.265?
H.265, also known as High-Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC), is a video codec that was released in 2013. It is the successor to H.264 and was designed to provide better video compression while maintaining the same level of video quality. H.265 can achieve up to 50% more compression than H.264. So it is an ideal choice for high-resolution video formats.

265 provides better compression efficiency, it requires more processing power to encode and decode video, meaning that it may not be the best choice for older or less powerful devices. H. 264, on the other hand, requires less processing power, making it more efficient on older or less powerful devices. Both are powerful tools capable of producing high-quality outputs, yet they vary. The main difference between H.265 and H.264 is their compression efficiency. H.265 can achieve up to 50% more compression than H.264, which means that it can transmit the same quality video using less bandwidth or storage. This makes H.265 ideal for high-resolution video formats such as 4K and 8K.

The primary benefit of H.265 is its improved compression efficiency, which makes it ideal for high-resolution video formats like 4K and 8K. Here are some other benefits of H.265:
Lower bandwidth requirements: H.265 requires less bandwidth than H.264 to transmit the same quality video. This makes it ideal for streaming video over the internet.
Improved video quality: Because H.265 uses more advanced compression algorithms, it can provide better video quality than H.264 at the same bitrate.
Reduced storage requirements: H.265’s improved compression efficiency means that video files take up less space on storage devices such as hard drives and memory cards.
2023-9-20
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Koensol
lvl.2
Netherlands
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DJI Paladin Posted at 9-20 21:07
Hi there. Thank you for reaching out. Here are the differences between the two codecs:

What is H.264?

Alright, so I can assume that H.265 doesn't actually result in higher quality footage, it just end up taking less storage and a lower bitrate? And H.264 can reach the same quality, but requires more storage and a higher bitrate?
2023-9-20
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DJI Paladin
Administrator
Flight distance : 318 ft

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Koensol Posted at 9-20 22:23
Alright, so I can assume that H.265 doesn't actually result in higher quality footage, it just end up taking less storage and a lower bitrate? And H.264 can reach the same quality, but requires more storage and a higher bitrate?

Thank you for your response. Yes, the main difference between the two is the H.265 is the successor of the H.264 and it can achieve up to 50% more compression than H.264 which means that it can transmit the same quality video using less bandwidth or storage. Should you have other inquiries, please feel free to contact us. Have a nice day ahead!
2023-9-22
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Andreas Dueck
First Officer
Switzerland
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I wouldn't choose 4K with your hardware. The current Intel graphics driver for the GTX 970 is not compatible with Davinci Resolve, which means you have no hardware acceleration.
2023-9-24
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Fishycomics
Captain
United States
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For me I have a good machine to do H265, I do H264  work flow is easier on certain programs I use, less headaches but who am I to say what is best.
2023-9-25
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johansenfoto
Captain
Flight distance : 1173379 ft
  • >>>
Norway
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Since you use the free version of Davinci Resolve, you should choose H.264 since the free version doesn't support H.265.
There is actually a limit of which free software that supports it with no watermark etc.

2023-9-27
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NickeeGeeTV
lvl.2
United States
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I would stick to H.264 for the time being. H.265 is extremely taxing/frustrating to work with if you don't have the appropriate PC for editing 4k and corresponding software. I upload videos to YT that are shot in 1080p and unless you're zooming in the footage post production or your viewers are watching on a 4k TV you won't notice much of a difference.
2023-11-30
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