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I record a ton of stuff on my iPod Touch, it encodes 50 minute videos (max recording time) in massive 4 gig file. I've got a ton of these videos on my Desktop Windows 7 PC (Dell Optiplex GX 620, with Dual 2.8 P4 and 3 gb ram, w/ 1TB hd). Between all my other media I have room for about 100-150 additional videos.

I've tried using hand brake to encode/render the video into smaller .Mov or .Mv4 files of around 1 gig, but the problem is that it creates defects in the video or audio, such as noise, dramatic loss of color etc...

These are big problems. Any suggestions for a free/open source solution to converting to a smaller size while retaining quality?

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A shell script driving mencoder or ffmpeg could do it, or for bigger tasks you could use a Avidemux script.

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Handbrake is a frontend for ffmpeg. If the video/audio is not correctly transcoded with handbrake, you will most likely get the same results with ffmpeg. You should try mencoder, sometimes when you get bad results with ffmpeg, mencoder does it well (and vice versa).

If you are curious and you want to know more, you may try converting with ffmpeg in the command line and see if you get some errors or warnings.

Also you did not mention which input you are using. Different encoders work better with different inputs.

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They do mention what output they are using (.Mov or .Mv4) just not input. –  Griffin Sep 25 at 13:15

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