Canon digital - MOV vs AVI

Discussion in 'Canon' started by ps56k, May 5, 2009.

  1. ps56k

    ps56k Guest

    We currently have the SD1000
    and are looking for another camera
    for our son - who will be travelling overseas -

    I happen to notice that the 780 has MOV listed
    as the video output vs the AVI format.
    It appears that MOV normally plays as a QuickTime "movie"
    vs the AVI playing with Windows Media Player.

    So - what are the issues with each format ?
    Size of recorded file using the point & shoot cameras ?
    Other things to consider ?
    ps56k, May 5, 2009
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  2. ps56k

    Marty Fremen Guest

    Quicktime is proprietary and so it's hard to find utilities which can edit
    or convert the videos. The camera will be bundled with playback software
    for the quicktime but you may have to pay for the full version to be able
    to edit the files. Also IME the free quicktime player continually nags you
    to purchase an upgrade, which is annoying.

    AVI is a standard format for which there are loads of free editing and
    conversion utilities, also many DVD players can play AVI files, depending
    on the actual codec in use.

    As to file size, it depends, as both the above are just container formats
    and the size depends on the actual compression codec being used inside the
    container, which varies. IME most cameras use the MJPEG video codec
    regardless of whether the container is Quicktime or AVI. This is basically
    just a stream of small jpegs and thus easy to implement in a stills camera.
    The compression level is poor, you can easily eat up a couple of GB in a
    half hour movie.

    A few Quicktime cameras use MP4 (MPEG4) compression which is much better
    from the file size POV, you will probably fit around 10 times as much video
    on a card as MJPEG could achieve. In principle AVI ones could also use
    MPEG4 type compression, e.g. the popular Xvid or DivX codecs but I don't
    know of any which actually do. The trouble is that good video compression
    requires custom hardware or else a much more powerful processor in the

    There is also the question of sound quality and audio compression codec
    used. Most camera use uncompressed low bitrate mono sound I think, but one
    or two record CD quality sound.

    In conclusion I would go for AVI format (because of ease of editing and
    playback) unless the Quicktime camera was using MP4 video compression (in
    which case the extra compression would be advantageous).
    Marty Fremen, May 5, 2009
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  3. ps56k

    Guest Guest

    the quicktime format is fully documented and anyone can write software
    to read and write quicktime files. there are plenty of such utilities
    available, many free, including ones from apple. quicktime player
    hasn't nagged in a long time and it's easy to make it stop anyway.
    actually, avi is more likely to use windows only codecs, making it
    *more* proprietary than a quicktime movie.
    Guest, May 6, 2009
  4. ps56k

    ps56k Guest

    So - trying to decide between the Canon SD780 with the HD video,
    using the MOV format...
    the Canon SD1100IS (which is a step up from our current SD1000)
    and the 1100 still uses the AVI format,
    but the video is only 640x480
    ps56k, May 6, 2009
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