What is the best movie format to embed in latex and pdf?

1024 views
Skip to first unread message

Christoph Schiller

unread,
Jan 4, 2009, 3:28:41 PM1/4/09
to
In my free downloadable physics text ( new beta version
since a few days available at www.motionmountain.net )
I have 19 embedded films.

What types are the best to ensure that as *many
systems as possible* can see the films in
Adobe Reader? Other pdf viewers?
What are the best combinations
of film type and file ending? What formats
use the *smallest memory*? How can one
change format in the simplest way on OSX?

(I already ensure that the films are looked at with the quickmovie
viewer, through an option in movie15.sty
to ensure that PC users see them as well as possible.)

I know next to nothing about films, so it would be
great to hear some advice. The films are one
of the reasons that the pdf is over 100 MB in
size, so that any advice is welcome.

Happy new year!

Christoph

P.S.
These are the film types and the file endings inside
the pdf:

Animation .mov
GiF .mov
H.264 .mov
MPEG-4 .mov
MPEG-1 .mpg
MPEG-1 .mov
PNG .mov
Video .mov
WRAW .mov

Christoph Schiller

unread,
Jan 4, 2009, 3:33:57 PM1/4/09
to
One specific question: Does it make sense to transcode
everything to H.264? Is that the most compatible format?

Christoph

Peter Flynn

unread,
Jan 4, 2009, 4:34:07 PM1/4/09
to
Christoph Schiller wrote:
> One specific question: Does it make sense to transcode
> everything to H.264? Is that the most compatible format?

My resident video guru tells me that H.264 encoding is what to go for if
you want persistence and durability (ie still playable in a decade or
more).

Whether it will work (in whatever container or framework) on all current
platforms without additional software is not known to me.

///Peter

Michael Zedler

unread,
Jan 4, 2009, 8:11:29 PM1/4/09
to

I guess H.264 in a .mp4 container will be the most portable format. I
put a test pdf containing such a movie on
<http://www.hft.ei.tum.de/mz/test.pdf>
Which OS/pdf viewer/media player configurations can display it -- and
which ones not out of the box?
Mac 10.4 with AR8/9 works. Anybody with XP/Vista/Linux willing to test?

Michael

Dan Coby

unread,
Jan 4, 2009, 9:33:07 PM1/4/09
to
Michael Zedler wrote:
> I guess H.264 in a .mp4 container will be the most portable format. I
> put a test pdf containing such a movie on
> <http://www.hft.ei.tum.de/mz/test.pdf>
> Which OS/pdf viewer/media player configurations can display it -- and
> which ones not out of the box?
> Mac 10.4 with AR8/9 works. Anybody with XP/Vista/Linux willing to test?

I found a movie of a solar flare on the second page of your file.

With Windows XP Home I checked and it works with:

Adobe Reader 8
Acrobat Pro 7
Acrobat Pro 6
FireFox 3
IE 7

Michael Zedler

unread,
Jan 4, 2009, 10:40:03 PM1/4/09
to

Good news! I wonder where the h.264 codec comes from on your xp system.
According to <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_media_player> it
isn't part of the default installation. Do you have Nero, VLC, quicktime
etc. installed, which might have installed the codec?

And, do I understand correctly from
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adobe_reader> that AR9 comes with a h.264
codec itself?

Michael

Dan Coby

unread,
Jan 4, 2009, 11:05:36 PM1/4/09
to
Michael Zedler wrote:
> Am 04.01.2009 21:33 Uhr, schrieb Dan Coby:
>> Michael Zedler wrote:
>>> I guess H.264 in a .mp4 container will be the most portable format. I
>>> put a test pdf containing such a movie on
>>> <http://www.hft.ei.tum.de/mz/test.pdf>
>>> Which OS/pdf viewer/media player configurations can display it -- and
>>> which ones not out of the box?
>>> Mac 10.4 with AR8/9 works. Anybody with XP/Vista/Linux willing to test?
>>
>> I found a movie of a solar flare on the second page of your file.
>>
>> With Windows XP Home I checked and it works with:
>>
>> Adobe Reader 8
>> Acrobat Pro 7
>> Acrobat Pro 6
>> FireFox 3
>> IE 7
>
> Good news! I wonder where the h.264 codec comes from on your xp system.
> According to <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_media_player> it
> isn't part of the default installation. Do you have Nero, VLC, quicktime
> etc. installed, which might have installed the codec?

When I run the file, I get a prompt about quicktime so I assume that is
the answer to your question. At one time I did have a trial package of Nero
installed on this machine. However I quickly uninstalled it since it was
trying to take over everything. I still have some problems that I have not
bothered to resolve that were caused by the install/uninstall of Nero. (I
only use this machine when I am away from home so minor annoyances tend to
get ignored.)

> And, do I understand correctly from
> <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adobe_reader> that AR9 comes with a h.264
> codec itself?

I have not tried AR9. I do not know the answer to your question.

Alan G Isaac

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 9:16:59 AM1/6/09
to
On 1/4/2009 8:11 PM Michael Zedler apparently wrote:
> I guess H.264 in a .mp4 container will be the most portable format. I
> put a test pdf containing such a movie on
> <http://www.hft.ei.tum.de/mz/test.pdf>
> Which OS/pdf viewer/media player configurations can display it -- and
> which ones not out of the box?
> Mac 10.4 with AR8/9 works. Anybody with XP/Vista/Linux willing to test?


Calls Quicktime to play on my system.

How did you create it?
Did you embed using movie15?

Alan Isaac

Felipe G. Nievinski

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 12:59:19 PM1/6/09
to
Vista/Chrome/AR8 works fine; it asks for permission to play what it
calls "a QuickTime multimedia content"; also the embedded controls
(play,pause,etc) do look like QuickTime's, so I think it's safe to say
that's what is being used.

Felipe.

Michael Zedler

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 2:27:22 PM1/6/09
to
Am 06.01.2009 09:16 Uhr, schrieb Alan G Isaac:
> On 1/4/2009 8:11 PM Michael Zedler apparently wrote:
>> I guess H.264 in a .mp4 container will be the most portable format. I
>> put a test pdf containing such a movie on
>> <http://www.hft.ei.tum.de/mz/test.pdf>
>> Which OS/pdf viewer/media player configurations can display it -- and
>> which ones not out of the box?
>> Mac 10.4 with AR8/9 works. Anybody with XP/Vista/Linux willing to test?
>
>
> Calls Quicktime to play on my system.

Good to hear -- but what is your system configuration? Win? What version?
Anybody with a linux system out there? What's happening there?
Anybody with a windows system without installed quicktime able to play it?

> Did you embed using movie15?

jup.

Michael

Jim Diamond

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 9:04:36 PM1/6/09
to

On Slackware 12.0, with ar7.0.8, I get a pop-up which says
The plug-in required by this 'Rendition' action is not
available. Information about the missing plug-in may
be available on Adobe's Web site.

With ar8, I get
The PDF file contains media that requires and additional player.
Please click 'Get Media Player' to download the correct media
player. To play the media, you will need to close and restart
the application once the player installation is complete.
Clicking on the link takes me to
http://www.adobe.com/special/acrobat/nomediaplayer.html
which says
We're sorry, but the third-party media player required to play
the selected media file in your Adobe PDF document isn't
available for your system. No media player will be downloaded
at this time.
and some other stuff.

Cheers.
Jim

Michael Zedler

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 9:59:05 PM1/6/09
to

Hm, that's not good. Two questions:
Does your system have any media player with a h.264 codec?
Can you play any of the mpeg1 videos of the book available at
www.motionmountain.net ?

Michael

Jim Diamond

unread,
Jan 7, 2009, 8:48:21 PM1/7/09
to

I have both xine and mplayer.

I hunted for a couple of minutes, but don't see the videos you are
talking about. If you can be more specific I can try it out.

Jim

IanC

unread,
Jan 10, 2009, 7:55:29 AM1/10/09
to
I just tried AR9 on a new XP SP3 installation and it prompts for an
additional player. The button "Get Media Player" takes me to the Apple
Quicktime download page.

--
Ian
--
"Michael Zedler" <michael...@tum.de> wrote in message
news:gjrvel$tff$1...@news.lrz-muenchen.de...

Christoph Schiller

unread,
Jan 11, 2009, 4:57:54 AM1/11/09
to
On Jan 10, 1:55 pm, "IanC" <m...@me.com> wrote:
> I just tried AR9 on a new XP SP3 installation and it prompts for an
> additional player. The button "Get Media Player" takes me to the Apple
> Quicktime download page.

A few months ago, I was told to enforce Quicktime player, because the
windows player was said to be buggy. If this is not necessary,
I will take it out.

Christoph


Peter Flynn

unread,
Jan 11, 2009, 5:03:42 PM1/11/09
to
Michael Zedler wrote:
> I guess H.264 in a .mp4 container will be the most portable format. I
> put a test pdf containing such a movie on
> <http://www.hft.ei.tum.de/mz/test.pdf>
> Which OS/pdf viewer/media player configurations can display it -- and
> which ones not out of the box?
> Mac 10.4 with AR8/9 works. Anybody with XP/Vista/Linux willing to test?

In Firefox under Ubuntu it said I needed to install a media player (I
have lots already), and the link took me to the Adobe site, which

> We're sorry, but the third-party media player required to play the
> selected media file in your Adobe PDF document isn't available for
> your system. No media player will be downloaded at this time.
>

> Adobe Acrobat 6.0 Professional, Adobe Acrobat 6.0 Standard, and Adobe
> Reader 6.0 for Windows currently support the following media players
> for playback: Flash, QuickTime, RealPlayer, and Windows Media
> Player.

Curiously, I already have all of these installed, including WMP under
WINE. Whatever link is in your PDF (or perhaps whatever MIME media-type
it invokes) is not being recognised by the half-dozen players I already
have installed.

///Peter

Reply all
Reply to author
Forward
0 new messages