As you might know, there are certain programs that can be used to play back videos, such as Real Player and QuickTime. These programs let you view short video clips, movie trailers, and all sorts of other cool movies!
Well, in order for you to view these videos, the clips must be saved in certain file formats. We will briefly discuss a few of these formats:
QuickTime is a very common video format. In fact, it is the first video format to be developed for personal computers! Usually, files saved in this format have the .mov extension at the end (i.e. movie.mov).
QuickTime has very good quality. The colors and sound are great! The only problem with QuickTime is that the files can be rather large. However, there are compression capabilities, but these tend to only work well in Macintosh computers, not PCs.
MPEG is fairly new. It is popular in that the files are not too large, and that it can be streamed. Streaming means that the files can be played directly from your hard drive and do not have to be downloaded. MPEG files usually have the extension .mpeg or .mpg.
MPEG encodes only the visual information that your eyes can actually see. This information is then compressed, and then encoded. It is encoded to allow it to be decoded a few frames at a time.
MPEG provides for high quality videos, but unfortunately it requires extensive technology to be encoded and decoded.
AVI is one of the more popular video formats. It was developed my Microsoft to make it easier to play videos in a Windows operating system. AVI can play at high-quality stereo sound with millions of colors, but however, this can also be quite expensive. AVI can also sometimes be a little choppy.
The extension for files in the AVI format is .avi.
DivX is a relatively new technology.
It is like MP3s for videos. DivX compresses
videos so that downloaded in a few minutes rather than a few hours. With DivX,
you can download movies with the same quality as those on TV and on DVD from
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