I've just re-encoded all the mp4 video previews from the masters so the picture quality of the previews is quite a bit better now. The fast-moving vbisuals are quite hard on the mp4 codec so I've had to limit the resolution to keep the quality nice but I think it gives a better impression of each dvd/title overall.
Video previews updated! (at long last)
Ok so it's been a while but the video previews in the shop have finally been updated to use mp4 videos instead of flash video, which was a problem playing on macs, ipads etc. Hopefully now it should all work on all devices.
The view previews aren't the best quality yet since they've been re-encoded from the old flv previews but as I track the original high res files down they'll be replaced with better quality versions.
Sorry it took so long!
Fetish themed visual content?
I've had to offer of some fetish-themed visual content and am wondering what my customers' thoughts on the subject are. I'm thinking pretty heavily stylised, lots of black and white, slow motion and suggestion rather than anything too explicit.
I'm thinking it would probably be most suited to gothy-type clubs or indeed fetish clubs themselves.
Is that something you guys would be interested in?
Chillout title 'Of Some Form' now available as a DVD
You may recall we had to lose a bunch of DVD titles a while back due to server diskspace limitations. Well things have improved on that front so we're very pleased to be able to offer more DVD titles again. It's not the full compliment loike we used to have but it'a already a lot better than it was.
One of the recent additions to make use of this is our chillout DVD "Of Some Form" which has so far only been available as an MPEG4/AVC download but is now also available in DVD format. Obviously the DVD isn't HD like the MPEG4 but it's made from the HD master to keep the quality as high as possible.
After some customer feedback about quality issues with the SD/PAL MPEG4 version of "Kontinuous" I had another look at the file to see if we could get the quality any better. The feedback highlighted that there was excessive blocking in some areas of the mix. This is probably due to the amount of black in the mix since I don't recall the other SD titles showing the same characteristic.
Well I investigated and there were indeed, but no amount of re-encoding seemed to fix it for some reason. The original encode was using a pretty generous bitrate already so it sorta stands to reason.
Anyhow after numerous re-codes I found that whilst I couldn't force the coded to behave better with the bitrate, it *did* respond better to resolution changes. I ended up using a higher-than-PAL resolution encoded off the original PAL master which forced the MPEG4 codec to use more pixels and basically reduced the appearance of the blocks without massive filesize increases.
Over the next few weeks I'll be going through the other SD titles and seeing if the same technique can be used to improve quality there too.
Anyone who has bought the MPEG4 version of Kontinuous and would like to re-download the higher quality version is welcome to do so - please just get in touch with your order number.
10 min sample clip of latest DVD title I'm working on. It's a chillout DVD using mostly my chakra animations which haven't been seen on DVD before but have been pretty popular on here.
Rather than showing them individually they've been mixed and I've been very pleased with some of the resulting combinations.
My partner is an energy healer and she's helped me get the composition right and also made sure that the full DVD covers all major chakras, as well as grounding and connecting up, and also some minor chakras apparently. You'd have to ask her about that though (firebeans.com). I will update this with better info as soon as I have it.
This DVD will hopefully be available soon as DVD and HD mp4 download as well as in smaller formats for tablets and mobile devices.
Let me know what you think - it's about an hour long in total. Enjoy :)
Make sure you play in HD if possible
Few pics of custom visuals for Max Vangeli & AN21 at The Arches, Glasgow
Just got a few pics sent from the organiser of an event I did some custom visuals for the other day so thought I'd post.
The event featured house-music-duo Max Vangeli and AN21 among others and was held at The Arches in Glasgow and was organised by Hoomday. Looks like they had a blast :)
Custom visuals for 'Addiction' Hardstyle Event
I've not done custom visuals in pilgrim for a while for a number of mundane reasons, but recently have been getting back into Pilgrim and having a lot more fun making visuals which has been a great experience.
This is a short segment from a custom job which started off as a straightforward customisation of one of our existing DVDs. Then I started tinkering in pilgrim to see if I could come up with something which better matched the music and ended up with this. Either way I was pleased with the end result - hope you like it too.
If you happen to be in or near Aberdeen in Scotland on the 18th August then you might want to check out the event - looks like it will be banging!
Whilst they're not ALL live yet and there's a few more to come, the majority of the MP4 versions of the DVD titles are now live and available for download.
The DVDs and MP4s will run in parallel for a while until things have settled a bit but eventually the DVDs will be taken offline. That disk space should mean I can put a few more titles up in the MP4 section though which is hopefully good news.
Generally the MP4s seem to come out with smaller file-sizes than the DVDs which means I've been able to fit a few more than expected on the server and also means shorter download times.
Posted guide for converting MP4 to playable video DVD
In response to the survey results below which indicated that some of our users might benefit from a step-by-step guide for how to convert MP4 videos to playable video DVDs, I've put together the guide below.
It took a while to put together because I had a bit of a hard time finding a decent bit of software which would do the job but eventually I found one.
It only uses free software and is actually pretty straightforward...I hope it makes sense :)