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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 13 August 2008
This is a great book written in an interesting and logical manner. Video compression is a complex subject containing many potential areas for confusion. Andy Beach's book is an extremely good read, offering information, advice and real life examples in a thoughtful and interesting manner.

The book caters for complete beginners and video professionals who are looking to update or expand their knowledge. I am always a bit wary about statements like this but assuming you are a fast learner with a sharp technical mind, it really is suitable for just about anyone.

If you own Adobe Premiere or Apple's Final Cut Pro, you will be pleased to see screenshots and settings of suitable compression recipes. If you are like me you will be even more impressed with the tables of data that would take you hours to dig up on the internet. You just couldn't learn this much information in such a short time in any other way. This is a book you will read, re-read and continually reference as needed.

Not only is the information bang up to day but there is a real emphasis on compression for the internet with in-depth information on Adobe's Flash, Microsoft's Silverlight, Apple's Quicktime and the newer H264 codec. That's not to say that DVD, Blu-Ray, Mobiles and set-top-boxes don't get a look in either.

If you are a Video Editor then you will quickly learn improvements and other tips to improve the use of your current set-up. You might also decide to try out some alternative software (anything worthy is reviewed in some detail) or simply attempt things you have found baffling in the past.

Although there is some great background information and a small amount of technical explanation this book does not bore you with mathematics or other sleep inducing theories. Instead you learn about practical issues such as pre-processing, workflow and software solutions. You cannot fail to produce better compressed video after reading this book - it really is that good!
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