An Introduction to Video Codecs

Even to people in the creative industry, video codecs can be an intimidating topic. In the realm of video delivery and digital content creation it’s an important subject to master, as improper codec use can result in huge files, visual artifacts, difficulties during edit, and playback issues.

Filmmaker David Kong has put together a tutorial series on Vimeo, introducing the technical points of codec functions in a simple and concise way. Not only does he discuss the topics at length, but the video also includes several real-world examples from projects Kong has worked on. It’s a great first look for beginners, and a useful refresher for professionals.

Topics covered include:

  • What a codec is

  • Different types of codecs

  • Bit Depth and Bit Rate

  • Chroma Subsampling

  • Spatial Compression and Blocking

  • Temporal Compression

  • Lossless vs. Lossy compression

The first video in the two-part series can be found embedded below. If you have any questions on video codecs and how they might affect your content creation and delivery, Nodal is here to help!