New Compression Rates Bring Promise of Streaming 4K

Posted by John Haslam

Video compression codecs are a critical puzzle piece in the overall scheme of video production and H.264 has been the standard codec for quite some time. While it’s done a good job with delivering videos ranging from broadcast quality to streaming 1080p to a computer, H.264 has its limitations. Video sizes are growing ever larger and with 4K resolution on the horizon, a better compression codec is needed to deliver the desired quality while somehow cutting back on the bandwidth used.

That’s where H.265 steps in.

This latest compression codec is like the proverbial new kid in town with the special athletic moves that upset the already-established gym class hierarchy. H.265 promises to deliver the ability to stream high quality video to not just laptops at home, but mobile devices on the go – all at half the bandwidth used with H.264. In other words, a video paying in 720p that normally required 1,000 KBps now only uses 500 KBps. No drop in quality, but half the bandwidth. Check out this demonstration video from Cisco Systems.

NOTE: Although both screens share the same quality, the example is suffering from a poor adjustment in color temperature.

What this means for video production houses like Skystorm Productions is this new form of video encoding enables us to shoot super high quality video – 4K resolution for instance – and deliver that same resolution to the consumer while preserving bandwidth and keeping loading and streaming times similar to what consumers are used to. What’s more, Skystorm’s clients can expect the absolute best quality final product that end users will enjoy, remember, and act upon; whether it be a commercial, inter-business training film, or music video.

“We’re excited to adopt H.265 as it rolls out into mainstream use,” says Jason Chamberlain, Skystorm’s Senior Post Production Editor. “It opens the door to ultra-high quality video at streaming speeds we’re used to and that benefits everybody down to the end user. Skystorm is always working on the cutting edge, so H.265 is exciting news about where our industry is headed in the not so distant future.”