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I have a 49.1 mb quicktime movie file. It's embedded in some object/embed html tags. When page loads, I have it set to autoplay. Problem is it takes 16 seconds for the video to begin playing. I would like it to take under 5 seconds. From the research I gathered, people say you have to compress the file. Some claim though that this reduces quality. Is there a free way to compress quicktime video while preserving quality? If not, what's the best way to compress quicktime video so I can get a good quality video playing on web page under 5 seconds from window load.

Thanks for response.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Without knowing more about you're hosting the file, the delay is most likely caused by the time it takes to download the file to the client computer, spin up Quicktime and start playing. You really only have two options for a file this size.

  1. Compress the video: There is no way to compress a video without losing quality. That's the trade-off you make when you compress a video. The question is finding the balance of quality vs size that you are willing to make.
  2. Find a server where you can have the file hosted where it supports streaming video. With streaming video the file will begin playing before the full file is downloaded. There is still an initial delay as the player on the client computer buffers up enough video as it thinks is appropriate for the size of the file and the current transfer speed. But this delay will be far less than delay you are seeing now.
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Is there a good free compressor or do I need to pay for something? – JohnMerlino Dec 11 '10 at 2:20
There are a huge number of utilities and apps out there which can do it with varying degrees of stability and success. A couple places to start looking: and, but I would recommend you start with investing in Quicktime Pro if you haven't already. It has some built in abilities for exporting in a compressed format. – BBlake Dec 11 '10 at 13:14

The terms you should search for are "progressive download" and "fast start". They allow the movie to start playing before the whole thing is downloaded. With more details like whether you're working on Windows or a Mac, and whether you want the movie viewable on mobile devices, someone can probably provide more specifics.

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