Video Compression Settings

In order for your work to look its best, we recommend these compression settings. As a rule of thumb, the settings below should yield a file size of about 6-10GB for a feature film.

Video

Codecs

Codec refers to the format in which your video is encoded. We accept most major codecs, but for best results, we recommend using one of the following:

  • H.264
  • Apple ProRes 422 (HQ)
  • H.265 (HEVC)

Frame rate

When preparing your video for upload, it’s best to maintain the video’s native frame rate when compressing your video. If your footage exceeds 60 FPS, we will automatically reduce the frame rate. We recommend a constant frame rate throughout your entire video. Always choose “constant” frame rate instead of “variable” frame rate.

While we accept many frame rates, these are the most commonly used:

  • 23.98
  • 24
  • 25
  • 29.97
  • 30
  • 50
  • 59.94
  • 60

Bit rate

Bit rate (also known as data rate) controls the visual quality of the video and its file size. If your video editing software gives you the option, choose a “variable” bit rate and select a value from the ranges below. You can experiment with different rates if your file is too large or you’re not happy with the quality of your source file.

Quality     

Bit rate (Mbps)*

SD

2 – 5

720p

5 – 10

1080p

10 – 20

2K

20 – 30

4K

30 – 60


*If you have the ability to set the CRF (constant rate factor), we recommend setting it to 18 or below. For ProRes, follow the standard presets in your video editor to export your file. For example, ProRes HQ for 1080p at 29.97 fps has a target bit rate of 220 Mbps in Final Cut.

Resolution

Videos come in all shapes and sizes but these are some of the most common formats. We recommend compressing your video with a pixel aspect ratio of 1:1, or square pixels.

Format

Resolution (px)

Standard Definition (SD)     
4:3 aspect ratio

640 × 480

Standard Definition (SD)       
16:9 aspect ratio

640 × 360

720p HD
16:9 aspect ratio

1280 × 720

1080p HD
16:9 aspect ratio

1920 × 1080

2K
16:9 aspect ratio

2560 × 1440

4K UHD
16:9 aspect ratio

3840 × 2160

Color

For the most accurate color display on Vimeo OTT,  we recommend uploading a file that contains color space information.

Note: some software may not offer control over your color settings.

Color Primaries and Matrix Coefficients

We support all color primaries and matrices, but we recommend BT.2020 (Rec. 2020) or BT.709 (Rec. 709). You can use the same value for both color primary and matrix coefficients.

Color Transfer Characteristics

We support a wide range of transfer characteristics for standard (SDR) videos, but for HDR videos we only support the PQ (SMPTE 2084) or HLG transfer function. If using the PQ (SMPTE 2084) transfer function, please include the following metadata to ensure the most accurate display of your video’s colors on all devices: Mastering Display Color Volume metadata (SMPTE 2086) and Content Light Level Information metadata (CEA 861.3). This metadata is usually added automatically in post-production.

Bit Depth

We support various bit depths, but we recommend a bit depth of 10 or greater for the highest quality results. For high dynamic range (HDR) videos, your file needs to have a bit depth of 10 or greater in order to be considered HDR on Vimeo. 

Scan Type: Progressive

Vimeo OTT converts all videos to progressive for playback. For best results, we recommend deinterlacing videos prior to upload.

Container

We support most standard containers such as MP4, MOV, AVI, WMV, FLV, etc.

NOTE: Make sure your files do NOT contain any leaders, color bars, or tones. The files will be presented to users exactly as they are delivered. Additionally, Vimeo OTT CANNOT accept videos with rectangular pixel aspect ratio, Apple Intermediate Codec, or HDV 720p60.

  

Audio

Important: An audio track is required in order to upload and transcode your video. Even if the video is silent, it should be exported with a silent audio track. While playback will work as expected on the web, certain platforms will fail to play video without an audio track.

CODEC:

AAC

BIT-RATE:

320 kbps

SAMPLE RATE:      

We accept most sample rates, but common ones for video are 44.1kHz & 48 kHz.

CHANNELS:    

Stereo – L & R (NOTE: If you want to upload Surround 5.1, please read this guide.

Commentary Tracks (Secondary Audio) – To include a commentary track on your film, you will need to hardcode the film with this audio track included in a video editor. This outputted video will be served as a separate video file, in addition to your film.

 
The Transcoding Process

Once your film is uploaded, we will begin the transcoding process, and you will receive an email when it’s ready. We transcode it to the proper sizes and formats for streaming and downloading (depending on your master file):

OUTPUT

CONDITIONS

1080p MP4 download          

Source file must have a resolution of at least 1920×1080

720p MP4 download

Source file must have a resolution of at least 1280×720

540p MP4 download

Always created

360p MP4 download

Always created

Adaptive streaming file

Always created


Subtitles

We accept hard subtitles, meaning they will need to be encoded within the video with an editing program. We also accept soft subtitles, which are a text file (.srt and vtt only) that we can play alongside your work in the player & as a separate download. Read more here.

Subtitle specs:

  • FORMAT: SRT or VTT
  • TIMECODE: MUST be in SRT format, like this: 00:00:07,751. Notice that it starts with “00”. Other formats sometimes start with “01”. This “01” will offset your timecode for SRT by 1 hour in our video player. You can use Jubler to fix this 01 issue by shifting the time. The subtitles need to reference the Media timecode and NOT the SMPTE timecode.
  • ENCODING: Make sure the SRT is in UTF-8 format. That works best when displaying foreign characters.
  • Please note: subtitles will always appear as white, the SRT/VTT files do not contain color data.