How do filmmakers compress file sizes of their raw footage?

8291 how do filmmakers compress file sizes of their raw footage

Filmmakers compress file sizes of their raw footage using a variety of methods, such as transcoding, codec selection, and compression settings.

Transcoding involves converting the original footage from one format to another. This can reduce file size by removing unnecessary metadata or compressing the data to fit the new format. However, this process can also result in a loss of quality.

Codec selection is another method used to reduce file size. A codec is a software or hardware device that compresses and decompresses digital media files. Choosing the right codec can greatly reduce the size of the raw footage while maintaining quality. For example, H.264 and H.265 are popular codecs used in video compression.

Compression settings are also important when reducing file size. These settings determine how much information is retained in the compressed file. Higher compression can result in smaller file sizes, but also a loss of quality. Lower compression can maintain higher quality, but result in larger file sizes.

In addition to these methods, filmmakers may also use other techniques to reduce file size, such as trimming footage, reducing frame rates, and adjusting resolution. These methods can help to remove unnecessary content or reduce the amount of data in each frame.

It is important to note that while compression can greatly reduce file size, it can also result in a loss of quality. Filmmakers must balance the need for smaller file sizes with the desire to maintain the integrity of the original footage.


  • “Compression Basics” by Dave Longbottom, Premium Beat
  • “Understanding Video Compression” by Justin Brown, Primal Video