Can I reduce the file size in HF 4

Made this little film with HF 4 .mp4, file size 87,1 Mb. Imported it in Magix, export it also in .mp4 ; file size 17,2 Mb. Same video., same resolution also mp4,  looks good too.

Is there a way I can reduce the file size in HF 4 ?


    edited January 24

     If you're already exporting in variable bitrate and then lowering it a bit, or increase depending on your previous setting. There's not much you can do other than take away from the overall quality. Afaik HitFilm doesn't support multiple render passes.

  • @Dolores74 It's all about the compression algorithm, I believe.  The only thing I know you can do in Hitfilm to get smaller size would be to change the output size which would have an effect on quality.  It's possible there is a bit rate difference in the two files but I am not very savvy on those settings.  I have used a program called XMedia Recode that will change some MP4 files down to a 10th the size with no visible (at least to me) quality loss.  Hope this is helpful.

  • edited January 24


    Even though HitFilm’s presets suggest they are made for YouTube, they really aren’t. To reduce file size AND make uploading to sites like YouTube a breeze, check out this video from MotionEpic (note that there is a slight quality loss as your video is being transcoded from  CFR to VFR, but it’s usually not noticeable if you’re just watching it)

  • tddavistriforcefx 

    Thank you very much guys the original file size out of HF was 87,1 Mb

    With XMedia Recode 13.2 Mb   With Handbrake 14.1 Mb

    I'll keep both on my system for now.

    Thanks a lot this was very helpful :-)

  • I compressed the file size by adding a new export preset and assigning there the target bitrate to 0.2 Mbps. Using this the file size was reduced from 100 Mb to 19 Mb. By applying different values you can see how they affect the size and the quality. The final quality depends of course on your original video ( static vs a lot of action ). Youtube preset has the value of 16 Mbps and I guess that its too big.

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    "Too big" is relative. For 1080p footage most cameras record 35 or 50mbps (or higher). Blu ray playback is at about 20mbps. Most streaming services are between 12-16mbps. The 16mbps for the YouTube export preset follows YouTube's recommendations for bitrate. Thua, that preset is, in fact, "just right."

    What's the final destination of the video? If you're just making it for yourself, whatever size you want is fine, but, if you intend on, say, uploading to YouTube or other streaming service then YOUTUBE (other streaming service) is going to recompress the video one more time. At that point your 0.2mbps file falls apart and your final output looks terrible.

    Mp4 is LOSSY. It degrades the footage. At 0.2mbps you have a file that will barely hold together, but needs to be the absolute final-final. 

  • In my case the 0.2 Mbps quality was almost same as the 5 Mbps quality. The content of the video was extremely simple, not much movement (as a mother of fact a map and a pencil that made some drawings). This was not uploaded anywhere but shared in whatsapp. And it was not 1080p but 600x900 pixels...

    If one compresses the video using handbrake - is the quality better than when using hitfilm? I thought that I found how to adjust the size of the final result. Now I have another project which target is smartphone. And there is much more movement. 

  • edited February 3

    "If one compresses the video using handbrake - is the quality better than when using hitfilm?"

    Absolutely. The x264 AVC encoder, used by Handbrake, is much better at low bitrate encoding than the Mainconcept encoder used by most editors (Hitfilm, Vegas, Adobe).

    My experience here is with high movement content. With simpler static'ish video I can't how much better x264 would be. But it will be better.

    Just feed Handbrake a high bitrate encode from Hitfilm. Or even Cineform as an intermediate.

    Also, best to use the current version of Hitfilm.

  • Handbrake seems to be doing some additional magic. Every time I try to upload a YouTube video straight out of HitFilm with the YouTube preset, YouTube always says something along the lines of “this video is not optimized.” Even a short video takes over an hour to upload and another hour or so to process. Using the transcode method I linked above, I can hit upload and be viewing the video on YouTube in full quality within 10-15 minutes with virtually no quality loss to my eye (other than the typical YouTube compression)... now my problem is that I barely have time to add descriptions and other metadata before the video is ready to go live!

  • Handbrake seems to be doing some additional magic. Every time I try to upload a YouTube video straight out of HitFilm with the YouTube preset, YouTube always says something along the lines of “this video is not optimized.”

    In the MOV/MP4 container format the video header can be at the front of the file or at the end of the file. When a file is being encoded you do not know the length of other information for video content headers. Tech details. More than just frame size and frame rate. So the header is at the end of the file. This is a problem for streaming since the information needs to be known before playback. Not a problem for a file on disk.

    Many encoders have a feature to put the header at the front of the file. This is often called web optimized. What really happens in the file gets encoded and written to disk and once the encode is done the header is written to a separate file and the video contents are then copied/appended to the header information. Sadly, Hitfilm does not have this feature.

    Youtube does not stream what you upload. They re-encode. But what they (Youtube) are complaining about is that the file is not in "web optimized" format. They transcode your upload to many different resolutions and possibly frame rates. They cannot do that until they have ALL the file header information. Therefore they cannot even start the transcode until the full file is finished uploading. With web optimized, they can start a transcode of every format at the same time, while the upload is taking place.

  • @NormanPCN

    Thank you for the clarification. I've added an internal ticket for this.

  • @DannyDev Point of additional pedantic detail. This is often called fast start. More specifically the MOOV atom at the front.

    Main point for this additional post is that, for your ticket, don't forget to list all codecs Hitfilm supports in MOV/MP4. AVC is the main one but Cineform and Prores (Mac). Those would be big uploads, and thus slow to upload, and the ability for Youtube to transcode during the (longer) upload for those two can make for a nicer user experience.

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