This short post describes the various video file formats that YouTube supports. They state on their help pages that the following file formats are accepted:
- Windows Media (files ending in .wmv)
- Windows Media (files ending in .avi)
- Quicktime (files ending in .mov)
- MPEG (files ending in .mpg)
However other formats are accepted, for example, I’ve uploaded a .flv file. One way to to check is to see if your file uploads and displays.
YouTube recommend the following as the the best upload file format:
- MPEG4 format
- 320 x 240 frame size
- 30 frames per second (fps)
- MP3 audio
But other formats are equally as good. My current favourite is WMV as it provides a good combination of quality and small video size.
YouTube uses the Flash FLV video format to deliver video with the following settings:
- 320 x 240 as the frame size
- 25 frames per second (fps)
- 200kbps as the delivery bit rate
What this means is that whatever format you upload your video in they will still convert it using their settings. However, if you use a good format like those we have covered it gives the Youtube encoders less work and some hints as to what best to do
Recently YouTube announced that in the near future it will using the H.264 format. It is not yet clear if this will replace the current use of flash but when details become available they will be posted here - so stay tuned.