Youtube Bad Video Quality (Render / Encode Settings)

Discussion in 'Video Encoding' started by Rodiculous, Feb 6, 2016.

  1. Hello everyone!

    I recently finished my first gaming build and am working on a gaming-oriented Youtube channel. I have lurked here and many other forums for a while, tried many proposed fixes but for some reason Youtube keeps degrading my footage severely, I was using Blender for a while and now am using Movie Studio Platinum 13, it's very similar to Vegas.

    I have tried uploading every method i can think of, first using mainconcept codec, then h264 encoding, various containers (.mov, .avi, .mp4), at crazy high bitrates as high as 100k and even uploading completely uncompressed. i've tried rendering an high quality intermediate in DNxHD and then handbraking it to h264 youtube specs and still the end result is the same. i have made sure to disable resampling and tried various deinterlacing settings, though as i understand those don't make a difference since it's progressive footage. i might try handbraking from an uncompressed intermediate but that wouldn't be a practical long-term fix.

    strangely enough my last few test videos, including uncompressed have an issue where they generate some sort of horizontal artifacts almost like interlacing lines halfway through the vid. the first few seconds where the camera is static looks decent then the moment i start moving it goes full idiot mode. i'll include my channel in the 2nd link because there are too many test videos to link, but all my recent videos are tests of the same clip with different settings.

    the issue seems to occur whenever there is movement, i get blurring and pixelation artifacts. for example here i am trying to do a cinematic panning around the tank and it immediately becomes blurry:

    for comparison this is kind of what i was going for, you can see his video suffers from much less quality loss (although still a bit because youtube)

    i am not sure if it's a framerate issue but it shouldn't be. i am recording in native 1080P 16:9 at 30FPS using Dxtory and Lagarith Lossless Codec, i've tried uploading a file with both a 29.97 and 30fps framerate, i might try to record at 29.97 and output at that same setting since i am not sure if youtube prefers that one but their site says it supports multiple FPS rates.

    strangely enough when i used my old computer but the same software to render it appeared better, even though i was running at much lower settings and not recording in native 1080p, but still with visible blurring.

    however now it seems to have gotten worse whenever there is motion, the first is my video and for comparison the next two are a popular and a smaller youtuber who both cover the same game, you can see the jingles video is a bit blurry but the second video is surprisingly good quality, even though she is playing at much lower graphics settings. i noticed when i checked the "stats for nerds" (right click on video) her video is in 25fps. she is doing quite a bit of panning around the tank and it still remains fairly unpixelated.

    are there any youtube gurus that have run into similar issues? sorry about the tl;dr but i have a ton of footage i'd love to publish and it is depressing to spend several hours editing and rendering a sharp-quality video only to have YT take a giant dump on it.

    thanks in advance and let me know if i can provide any further information on my rig or render settings
  2. Thalmor Wizard

    Thalmor Wizard Moderator Staff Member Site Contributor

    Could you possibly link the youtube videos directly, instead of posting links? The forum auto-embeds youtube videos when they're used, so no need to use trackable links.

    From the sounds of it, I think you are just expecting too much from YouTube, but you need to post some videos to confirm this. And honestly.. 100Mbps bitrate? That's pointless and completely wasteful: you are achieving nothing by increasing the bitrate, except increasing the amount lost, just keep the bitrate low (a 15Mbps bitrate is more than sufficient for 1080p60 content).

    If you need a Vegas preset, this is mine. I render to 30Mbps, so that I can compress with Handbrake to 15Mbps, which provides perfectly satisfactory content at great quality on 720p60 and 1080p60:
  3. i'm not expecting source-identical quality but other youtubers covering the same game are getting much better results than me so i want to be at least close to theirs

    the 100mbps was a proof of concept test video, i was trying to give youtube the best possible quality upload so that it would degrade less than giving it a low quality one to begin with.

    i've tried similar mainconcept AVC settings (but at 30fps) when i first started and my videos look nowhere near as clear as yours, the text is fuzzy and there aren't clearly defined lines and borders at all. and that's even without handbraking it further down, which for me seems to lower the quality even more. what handbrake settings are you using?

    here is more or less the best quality i could achieve, i think it was mainconcept avc, no handbrake, CABAC, forgot the mbps since i deleted the video to save space

    ok here are the unshortened links from my new rig

    cinematic panning my vid:

    comparison vid from popular youtube:

    comparison of my vid (1st) and popular youtubers covering the same game:

    my uncompressed test vid which resulted in strange interlacing and channel with all of the test videos
  4. crap it didn't embed the timecodes! i wanted to link to specific parts of the video. is there a way to edit comments?
  5. sorry, it doesn't seem to want to link the timecodes, if you could skip to the following times you'll see what i mean:
    1st video : 18m 10s
    2nd: 1 min
    3rd: 15 sec
    4th: 13:45 is where it gets pretty heavy on action
    5th: pretty much anywhere
    the next ones work if you just click them
  6. wait so correct me if i'm wrong, but you're saying a high bitrate will make the video WORSE when youtube gets it? i've read high bitrate is the way to go but could be wrong, there was a youtube "for high quality content with enterprise level connection" recommending 50mbps
  7. Thalmor Wizard

    Thalmor Wizard Moderator Staff Member Site Contributor

    The high enterprise connections is for people who have super high upload speeds and can upload videos very quckly (eg they have a speed of 75mbps or more, maybe higher). For most regular YouTuber's, who won't have such high upload speeds, a bitrate of 15mbps is quite satisfactory for many needs. And yes, the higher the bitrate, the more that is lost, so you have to make sure that, when you send a video to youtube, it's already close to their limits so that less is lost.

    Unless you are uploading 2k or 4k footage (not recommended), then there is very little reason for a video to go above 20mbps bitrate. Even in the UK, users can struggle to buffer even 720p60. :/

    The Handbrake settings I use are basically the default "Normal" preset, but with Web Optimised enabled and no cropping done. After rendering in Vegas, the bitrate can average around 30mbps: after Handbrake compresses, I usually get around 15mbps, which produces clear and readable footage at 720p60.

    As for the videos, the quality seems fine, but what FPS are you recording at? If you are recording at 60fps, then upload at that same FPS, as you'll get better quality HD streams on YouTube when doing that, which will improve the experience users get. There is usually little reason to upload at 30fps these days (except if the game is a console game, FPS locked or is an older game only designed for 30fps): 60fps is the way to go to improve the quality :)
    Rodiculous likes this.
  8. thanks! i will try keeping it around 15mbps then

    i tried uploading at both 29.97 and "true" 30fps, and i record at 30. i did notice big youtubers covering world of tanks at 60fps do seem to have better quality but what struck me as odd, Alina Rin () seems to upload at 25fps per the "stats for nerds" and her quality seems even sharper than theirs. i saw this video where the guy uploaded footage at 2fps (albeit real life not videogame) to prove a point about slower framerates being less affected by compression.

    but i will try playing around with the FPS like you suggested, only reason i haven't tried recording at 60fps yet is because i want to keep high graphics settings but the game dips dangerously close to 60-65 during heavy action while Dxtory is also running but i could probably mess with a few of the settings.

    a few questions, i have a lot of footage already recorded at 30 fps, would "upscaling" it to 60 in vegas affect quality? since it's an increment of 30 and all. i did read a few more threads on here about people using anti-aliasing in game and presharpen during rendering to give the YT encoder some help, as well as upscaling to 1920 x 1200 or even 2k to "fool" YT into better compression quality, have you tried any of that?

    finally for your handbrake settings, do you use a Constant Quality setting or just manually put 15mbps as avg bitrate? variable framerate too? i am wondering if i make a high quality intermediate and then handbrake it down to 15 mbps would improve the end product on YT. seems like i have a lot of things to try.
  9. Thalmor Wizard

    Thalmor Wizard Moderator Staff Member Site Contributor

    No real difference between the two, not enough for YouTube to notice much of a difference that is :p

    Based on the comments, I guess she's a Russian YouTuber. My guess is that they are not aware of the ability to up videos up to 60fps (which has been around for quite a while now). :p

    If you have issues recording at 60fps with Fraps or Dxtory, try Shadowplay. You shouldn't have too many FPS issues with that (unless the game engine is a GPU intensive game, in which case reducing the game's graphics settings could help) program.

    Most likely, because 60fps is double the frame count of 30fps, therefore you could get audio desync or poorer quality.

    Neither of this is necessary with the advent of high FPS playback on YouTube. Most of that advice was provided so people could improve the quality that 30fps would give, but with 48/50/60fps playback now possible, there is no need to use sharpening or upscaling techniques to improve the playback quality.

    I use a Constant Birate in Handbrake, with a Rate Factor of 20. Pretty much everything else is left at default (barring the settings I mentioned). If you use the Vegas Preset I linked above, combined with Handbrake, you'll get good quality footage. :)
    Rodiculous and deardevildude19 like this.
  10. i tried it with those settings but honestly it looks about the same. i did it at 30 fps though because my raw footage is at 30.

    brb after i record some 60fps and try that.
    i'll probably give shadowplay a shot eventually, i just don't like that it doesn't support audio streams for live commentary but maybe i can rig obs to run in the background and record my mic audio. i tried audacity but for some reason the quality is worse than with obs or dxtory.
  11. ok i tried it at 60fps, it does look like the quality is increased somewhat but it still seems worse than comparable vids. the comparable vid is still a bit blurry but the text and lines seem much clearer. perhaps this is one of those YT things where you have to wait a few days to get the best quality.


  12. deardevildude19

    deardevildude19 Sexy Duck Site Contributor Well-Known Member

    Have you tried using a different codec on Dxtory to see if the codec is causing the issue or not. I would recommend that you look around on the internet and try multiple codecs for Dxtory.

    For example I like to use a codec called 'Matrox' it is very good quality with little performance hit on my system when recording 720p60. If you need help on getting the Maxtrox codec use the JackFrags video HERE and he gives a very good tutorial on how to install it and get the best settings.
    Rodiculous likes this.
  13. i have heard of that, but most people seemed to recommend Lagarith Lossless so I went with that. i will give it a shot though. on the plus side the quality is improving once i switched to 60FPS, i'll try a few different render methods as well and see what i get.
    deardevildude19 likes this.
  14. Thalmor Wizard

    Thalmor Wizard Moderator Staff Member Site Contributor

    Lagarith Lossless is, as the name suggests, a lossless video codec. I wouldn't recommend it, as YouTube will lose lots of quality and no longer be "lossless quality". I would recommend using a codec with high graphical quality (but not lossless) and little performance hit. :)
    deardevildude19 likes this.
  15. deardevildude19

    deardevildude19 Sexy Duck Site Contributor Well-Known Member

    If you would like I can get a sample clip recorded and uploaded for an example and I can tell you my render settings if you think it is satisfactory. :D
  16. deardevildude19

    deardevildude19 Sexy Duck Site Contributor Well-Known Member

    I have just finished uploading the video, so if it isnt processed properly you may have to give it some time.

    Here you go.
    Rodiculous likes this.
  17. yeah that looks pretty good! are you using JackFrags Matrox settings? i haven't had a chance to try out the Matrox codec yet, had some job interviews I had to prepare for. but i will soon!

    btw how do you know when it's finished processing, when you have the full resolution options available? or does it happen even later than that. i have noticed some of my subscribed youtubers' videos do seem to improve after 2-3 days, maybe it's all in my head though :)
  18. deardevildude19

    deardevildude19 Sexy Duck Site Contributor Well-Known Member

    Well I just checked the video and it is done processing. I dont know if there is a way to know if it is done by going into the video manager, I just watch the video and see if all of the option for quality are there.

    Dxtory 1.png Dxtory 2.png
    Vegas Render settings.png
    If you would like any other screen shots or info I can post them also. Also when in Vegas I disable the resample on the clip by Right clicking -> Switches -> Disable Resample.
    Rodiculous and Thalmor Wizard like this.
  19. Thalmor Wizard

    Thalmor Wizard Moderator Staff Member Site Contributor

    Looks like a good preset, though I would only use 1 slice and allow the source to adjust frame rate (if it's VBR, then you want the VBR to be preserved: otherwise audio sync will be lost).
    Rodiculous likes this.
  20. deardevildude19

    deardevildude19 Sexy Duck Site Contributor Well-Known Member

    I will definitely give that ago and compare it to my current settings to see how it works. Thanks :D
    Rodiculous likes this.

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