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My goal; export a series of images from a video file using ffmpeg. I guess my issue is related to frames per second and bit-rate.

I tried the following command: ffmpeg -i myVideo.mp4 -r 1 images_%04d.jpg but somehow on a 45 second video, I end up with 47 images. It's quite important I get this accurate. I won't know ahead of time what the appropriate FPS or bit-rates are, if I need those values when running the command, I need to be able to pull them from ffmpeg somehow.

I also considered exporting ALL the images on the video with ffmpeg -i myVideo images_%04d.jpg and dividing the number of images by the total seconds in the video. This will give me something like 24.97, and I'll round to 25 and delete 24 of every 25 frames. My fear is that if the file is VBR and the high bit-rate parts are in the beginning of the video, the frames I finish with won't match exactly 1 per second. For instance, the 30th image might actually appear in the video closer to second 31.

 running ffmpeg -> ffmpeg -i "/videos/11.mp4" -s "352x264" "/images/image%06d.jpg"
FFmpeg version 0.6-4:0.6-2ubuntu6.1, Copyright (c) 2000-2010 the FFmpeg developers
  built on Mar 31 2011 18:43:47 with gcc 4.4.5
  configuration: --extra-version=4:0.6-2ubuntu6.1 --prefix=/usr --enable-avfilter --enable-avfilter-lavf 
--enable-vdpau --enable-bzlib --enable-libgsm --enable-libschroedinger --enable-libspeex 
--enable-libtheora --enable-libvorbis --enable-vaapi --enable-pthreads --enable-zlib --enable-libvpx 
--disable-stripping --enable-runtime-cpudetect --enable-gpl --enable-postproc --enable-x11grab 
--enable-libdc1394 --enable-shared --disable-static
  libavutil     50.15. 1 / 50.15. 1
  libavcodec    52.72. 2 / 52.72. 2
  libavformat   52.64. 2 / 52.64. 2
  libavdevice   52. 2. 0 / 52. 2. 0
  libavfilter    1.19. 0 /  1.19. 0
  libswscale     0.11. 0 /  0.11. 0
  libpostproc   51. 2. 0 / 51. 2. 0

Seems stream 1 codec frame rate differs from container frame rate: 49938.00 (49938/1) -> 24.97 (24969/1000)
Input #0, mov,mp4,m4a,3gp,3g2,mj2, from '/videos/11.mp4':
    major_brand     : mp42
    minor_version   : 0
    compatible_brands: isomavc1mp42
  Duration: 00:00:32.60, start: 0.000000, bitrate: 433 kb/s
    Stream #0.0(und): Audio: aac, 44100 Hz, stereo, s16, 127 kb/s
    Stream #0.1(und): Video: h264, yuv420p, 352x264 [PAR 1:1 DAR 4:3], 303 kb/s, 24.97 fps, 24.97 tbr, 24969 tbn, 49938 tbc
Output #0, image2, to '/images/image%06d.jpg':
    encoder         : Lavf52.64.2
    Stream #0.0(und): Video: mjpeg, yuvj420p, 352x264 [PAR 1:1 DAR 4:3], q=2-31, 200 kb/s, 90k tbn, 24.97 tbc
Stream mapping:
  Stream #0.1 -> #0.0
Press [q] to stop encodingframe=  176 fps=  0 q=24.8 size=      -0kB time=7.05 bitrate=  
-0.0kbits/s    ^Mframe=  312 fps=236 q=24.8 size=      -0kB time=12.50 bitrate=  -0.0kbits/s    
^Mframe=  316 fps=112 q=24.8 size=      -0kB time=12.66 bitrate=  -0.0kbits/s    ^Mframe=  322 
fps= 55 q=24.8 size=      -0kB time=12.90 bitrate=  -0.0kbits/s    ^Mframe=  327 fps= 39 q=24.8 
size=      -0kB time=13.10 bitrate=  -0.0kbits/s    ^Mframe=  331 fps= 33 q=24.8 size=      
-0kB time=13.26 bitrate=  -0.0kbits/s    ^Mframe=  336 fps= 31 q=24.8 size=      -0kB time=13.46 
bitrate=  -0.0kbits/s    ^Mframe=  339 fps= 27 q=24.8 size=      -0kB 
time=13.58 bitrate=  -0.0kbits/s    ^Mframe=  344 fps= 22 q=24.8 size=      -0kB 
time=13.78 bitrate=  -0.0kbits/s 

Does anyone have ideas of how to get time-accurate results exporting images from video with ffmpeg?? Thanks!

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What is the video codec? – Steven Penny Feb 6 '12 at 7:23
Might be related … you should definitely update your FFmpeg version. – slhck Feb 8 '12 at 22:33

Are you sure you're losing frames? Your Input video is h264 which support variable frame rate. to get details about each frame I would recommend using the following:

ffmpeg -i inputvideo -vf showinfo -acodec copy -vcodec mpeg2video temp.mp4

This way you will know how many frames your movie have.

You can avoid variable frame rate by converting your movie to a non variable frame rate video, using the -r float argument, and then exporting the photos (as you did in your command).

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