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I've been fascinated by a copy of “The Emoji Movie” being compressed to 45 megabytes, and was wondering how would I go about achieving such compression to very large movies. Of course, if some fraction of the quality could be maintained, that would be lovely, but I want to achieve a miniscule compression for a large file.

  • Hi, it was brought to our attention that well, we might get in trouble for your links, and your question, and the answer stands alone even without it. I've edited them out. – Journeyman Geek Aug 29 '18 at 1:40
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I've ran MediaInfo on your video and here's what it said:

General
Complete name                            : C:\...\c3lwe9.mp4
Format                                   : MPEG-4
Format profile                           : Base Media / Version 2
Codec ID                                 : mp42 (isom/iso2/avc1/mp41)
File size                                : 45.0 MiB
Duration                                 : 1h 26mn
Overall bit rate                         : 72.9 Kbps
Movie name                               : The.Emoji.Movie.2017.720p.BRRip.850MB.MkvCage
Encoded date                             : UTC 2018-02-16 12:32:47
Tagged date                              : UTC 2018-02-16 12:32:47
Writing application                      : HandBrake 1.0.7 2017040900

Video
ID                                       : 1
Format                                   : AVC
Format/Info                              : Advanced Video Codec
Format profile                           : Main@L4
Format settings, CABAC                   : Yes
Format settings, ReFrames                : 4 frames
Codec ID                                 : avc1
Codec ID/Info                            : Advanced Video Coding
Duration                                 : 1h 26mn
Bit rate                                 : 38.1 Kbps
Width                                    : 300 pixels
Height                                   : 128 pixels
Display aspect ratio                     : 2.35:1
Frame rate mode                          : Constant
Frame rate                               : 12.000 fps
Color space                              : YUV
Chroma subsampling                       : 4:2:0
Bit depth                                : 8 bits
Scan type                                : Progressive
Bits/(Pixel*Frame)                       : 0.083
Stream size                              : 23.5 MiB (52%)
Writing library                          : x264 core 148 r2708 86b7198
Encoding settings                        : cabac=1 / ref=2 / deblock=1:0:0 / analyse=0x1:0x111 / me=hex / subme=6 / psy=1 / psy_rd=1.00:0.00 / mixed_ref=1 / me_range=16 / chroma_me=1 / trellis=1 / 8x8dct=0 / cqm=0 / deadzone=21,11 / fast_pskip=1 / chroma_qp_offset=-2 / threads=4 / lookahead_threads=1 / sliced_threads=0 / nr=0 / decimate=1 / interlaced=0 / bluray_compat=0 / constrained_intra=0 / bframes=3 / b_pyramid=2 / b_adapt=1 / b_bias=0 / direct=1 / weightb=1 / open_gop=0 / weightp=1 / keyint=120 / keyint_min=12 / scenecut=40 / intra_refresh=0 / rc_lookahead=30 / rc=crf / mbtree=1 / crf=34.0 / qcomp=0.60 / qpmin=0 / qpmax=69 / qpstep=4 / vbv_maxrate=20000 / vbv_bufsize=25000 / crf_max=0.0 / nal_hrd=none / filler=0 / ip_ratio=1.40 / aq=1:1.00
Encoded date                             : UTC 2018-02-16 12:32:47
Tagged date                              : UTC 2018-02-16 12:32:47
Color range                              : Limited
Color primaries                          : BT.709
Transfer characteristics                 : BT.709
Matrix coefficients                      : BT.709

Audio
ID                                       : 2
Format                                   : MPEG Audio
Format version                           : Version 1
Format profile                           : Layer 3
Mode                                     : Joint stereo
Mode extension                           : MS Stereo
Codec ID                                 : 6B
Duration                                 : 1h 26mn
Bit rate mode                            : Constant
Bit rate                                 : 32.0 Kbps
Channel(s)                               : 2 channels
Sampling rate                            : 48.0 KHz
Compression mode                         : Lossy
Stream size                              : 19.8 MiB (44%)
Title                                    : Stereo / Stereo
Language                                 : English
Default                                  : Yes
Alternate group                          : 1
Encoded date                             : UTC 2018-02-16 12:32:47
Tagged date                              : UTC 2018-02-16 12:32:47

Note that out of total 45.0 MiB, video takes up just 23.5 MiB and audio is 19.8 MiB. The missing 1.7 MiB is probably container overhead. So video is roughly 52% of the file and audio is 44%!

This is the key information about video stream is:

Width                                    : 300 pixels
Height                                   : 128 pixels
Frame rate                               : 12.000 fps

300x128 pixels at 12 frames per second, so 460,800 pixels per second. A FullHD-quality video would probably be 1920x820 at 25 frames per second, that's 47,232,000 pixels per second. So you can get 85x compression just by resizing video to a post stamp size and reducing framerate. The video stream is 23.5 MiB, so original would be about 2 GiB - sounds pretty reasonable.

Audio also has dramatically low bitrate of 32 Kbps. I'd consider 128 Kbps acceptable, which would increase its size 4 times, resulting in an audio stream taking about 80 MiB of space.

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