uPlayer – Creating suitable media

uPlayerThis post gives details and advice on how to create media for use in uPlayer.

The Creative Media Team, based in CiCS, can advise on the specifics of creating audio and video material. Their website has a variety of userguides and advice on using media technology, and the processes involved creating media.

The information below details some of the specific questions

File types

File types that can be uploaded to the uPlayer system are:

.mov, .avi, .wmv, .flv, .mpg, .mp4, .mp3, .wav, .wma

High-Definition (HD) Video

uPlayer will encode 720p high definition video, but currently can’t handle 1080p material. If you submit a 1080p video it will fail to encode.

Format converters

Occasionally the uPlayer system fails to encode a file that has been uploaded. This is usually due to issues with formats and codecs. Most of these problems are solved by converting the file to another format.

Here are a couple of free converters that work on Windows PCs and Macs. These have both been used to convert problem material, which has then been successfully uploaded to uPlayer.

Handbrake

Miro Video Converter

Adobe Media Encoder is also available via the Creative Media Facilities.

Screencasts

If you produce high resolution screencasts, and want to maximise legibility, our advice is:

  • produce the best quality original you can
  • lower the resolution of the screen you are capturing from
  • capture a smaller area of the screen

uPlayer encoding settings are configured for maximum quality.

HD material recorded at 1080p is downsampled to 720p, this is a current limitation of the product.

Subtitles

It is possible to add subtitles to a video in the uPlayer system.

Subtitles are added as a separate text file containing

  • the start and end time that the subtitle will be displayed
  • the text to be superimposed

The display of subtitles can be switched on and off by clicking the CC button at the top right of the video.

There is free Windows software that can help make the task of generating a subtitle file a little easier – Subtitle Edit.