Saturday, May 30, 2009

Cinelerra 4 just not working

I was interested in trying out Cinelerra 4, Heroine Warrior's latest version of Cinelerra. To reiterate, there are two versions of Cinelerra available:
Heroine Warrior's, the original coded by Adam Williams (bow down to the man!) and
Cinelerra Community Version, Cinelerra CV

On my Fedora 10, x86-64 setup, I gave the latest HV Cinelerra 4 version a try. I encountered a bunch of hurdles, mainly the GCC 4.3 changes that caused missing header information in mjpegtools-1.9.0_rc3 listed here:

I got the software to compile. At the final "make install" step, the installation starts, but does not complete with only the first 40 or so lines of the install finishing:
[mule@ogre bin]# make install
make -f build/Makefile.cinelerra install
make[1]: Entering directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4'
make -C plugins install
make[2]: Entering directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4/plugins'
mkdir -p ../bin/fonts
cp fonts/* ../bin/fonts
mkdir -p ../bin/shapes
cp shapes/* ../bin/shapes
cp ../thirdparty/mjpegtools*/mpeg2enc/mpeg2enc ../bin/mpeg2enc.plugin
make[2]: Leaving directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4/plugins'
DST=../bin make -C libmpeg3 install
make[2]: Entering directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4/libmpeg3'
cp x86_64/mpeg3dump x86_64/mpeg3peek x86_64/mpeg3toc
x86_64/mpeg3cat ../bin
make[2]: Leaving directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4/libmpeg3'
make -C po install
make[2]: Entering directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4/po'
mkdir -p ../bin/locale/de/LC_MESSAGES

cp ../bin/locale/sl/LC_MESSAGES/
make[2]: Leaving directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4/po'
make -C doc install
make[2]: Entering directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4/doc'
mkdir -p ../bin/doc
cp arrow.png autokeyframe.png camera.png channel.png crop.png cut.png
expandpatch_checked.png eyedrop.png fitautos.png ibeam.png
left_justify.png magnify.png mask.png mutepatch_up.png paste.png
projector.png protect.png record.png recordpatch_up.png rewind.png
singleframe.png show_meters.png titlesafe.png toolwindow.png
top_justify.png wrench.png magnify.png ../bin/doc
cp: warning: source file `magnify.png' specified more than once
cp cinelerra.html ../bin/doc
make[2]: Leaving directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4/doc'
make[1]: Leaving directory `/usr/src/cinelerra-4'
[mule@ogre bin]#

Therefore, the installation does not copy the cinelerra binary into /usr/local/bin. If I try to run the binary from the source code directory, I get this:
PluginServer::open_plugin: /usr/src/cinelerra-4/bin/brightness.plugin:
undefined symbol: glUseProgram
PluginServer::open_plugin: /usr/src/cinelerra-4/bin/deinterlace.plugin:
undefined symbol: glUseProgram

undefined symbol: glNormal3f
PluginServer::open_plugin: /usr/src/cinelerra-4/bin/swapchannels.plugin:
undefined symbol: glUseProgram
PluginServer::open_plugin: /usr/src/cinelerra-4/bin/threshold.plugin:
undefined symbol: glUseProgram
PluginServer::open_plugin: /usr/src/cinelerra-4/bin/zoomblur.plugin:
undefined symbol: glEnd
signal_entry: got SIGSEGV my pid=3965 execution table size=16:
awindowgui.C: create_objects: 433
awindowgui.C: create_objects: 440
awindowgui.C: create_objects: 444
awindowgui.C: create_objects: 447
awindowgui.C: create_objects: 453
suv.C: get_cwindow_sizes: 744
suv.C: get_cwindow_sizes: 774
suv.C: get_cwindow_sizes: 800
suv.C: get_cwindow_sizes: 821
editpanel.C: create_buttons: 177
editpanel.C: create_buttons: 303
editpanel.C: create_buttons: 177
editpanel.C: create_buttons: 303
mwindowgui.C: create_objects: 192
mwindowgui.C: create_objects: 195
mwindowgui.C: create_objects: 199
signal_entry: lock table size=6
0x357dc80 RemoveThread::input_lock RemoveThread::run
0x64d0370 CWindowTool::input_lock CWindowTool::run
0x64f3640 TransportQue::output_lock PlaybackEngine::run
0x3441940 TransportQue::output_lock PlaybackEngine::run
0x3442420 MainIndexes::input_lock MainIndexes::run 1
0x3442f80 Cinelerra: Program MWindow::init_gui *
BC_Signals::dump_buffers: buffer table size=0
BC_Signals::delete_temps: deleting 0 temp files
SigHandler::signal_handler total files=0

Even though I have an NVidia graphics card, the error lines above were related to OpenGL. Thus, I thought I might have better luck compiling without OpenGL enabled. After I removed those lines from from hvirtual_config.h, I did a make clean;make. This time around, I was able to get Cinelerra 4 to start properly. Though, it soon locks up when viewing my 720P MPEG-TS files:
[mule@ogre cinelerra-4]$ ./bin/cinelerra
Cinelerra 4 (C)2008 Adam Williams

Cinelerra is free software, covered by the GNU General Public License,
and you are welcome to change it and/or distribute copies of it under
certain conditions. There is absolutely no warranty for Cinelerra.
[mpeg2video @ 0xeafd00]slice mismatch
[mpeg2video @ 0xeafd00]mb incr damaged
[mpeg2video @ 0xeafd00]mb incr damaged
[mpeg2video @ 0xeafd00]invalid cbp at 14 37
[mpeg2video @ 0xeafd00]slice mismatch
[mpeg2video @ 0xeafd00]ac-tex damaged at 25 40
[mpeg2video @ 0xeafd00]ac-tex damaged at 6 41
[mpeg2video @ 0xeafd00]ac-tex damaged at 7 42

So much for that experiment! I'm going back to the CV version for now.
the mule

Monday, May 18, 2009

ffmpeg pipe to mpeg2enc

Occasionally, I'll need to send a video stream into mpeg2enc. Mpeg2enc doesn't take an input file; it only accepts a yuv4mpeg stream. In order to send a yuv4mpeg stream to mpeg2enc, I do this using ffmpeg and the -f yuv4mpegpipe command line switch. Also, for best quality, I will send the stream using the FFMPEG variant of the Huffyuv lossless compression algorithm. ffyhuff is an enhanced version of Huffyuv that compresses better than Huffyuv.

Update 2009/05/19As per Dan Dennedy's comment below, ffmpeg's yuv4mpegpipe command will ignore the -vcodec option and pipe the video stream to mpeg2enc using an uncompressed C420jpeg stream, which is an uncompressed YUV format. Certainly good enough for the likes of me!
*** end update ***

Here is a sample command to reencode a 720P video stream as a yuv4mpeg pipe to mpeg2enc:
ffmpeg -threads 4 -i INPUT.M2V -f yuv4mpegpipe - ¦ mpeg2enc --verbose 0 --multi-thread 4 --aspect 3 --format 3 --frame-rate 4 --video-bitrate 18300 --nonvideo-bitrate 384 --interlace-mode 0 --force-b-b-p --video-buffer 448 --video-norm n --keep-hf --no-constraints --sequence-header-every-gop --min-gop-size 6 --max-gop-size 6 -o OUTPUT.M2V

Note that I am taking advantage of the eight processors in my dual quad core using the multithread switches in the commands to both ffmpeg and mpeg2enc. Note that the eight threads have been split evenly, four to each encoder, to avoid CPU context switching. (Thanks again, Dan!)

Here's another trick: to see the header information of a YUV4MPEG stream, pipe the FFmpeg conversion stream to head -1 like so:
ffmpeg -i -vcodec mpeg2video -f yuv4mpegpipe - | head -1
ffmpeg -i -pix_fmt yuv420p -f yuv4mpegpipe - | head -1

The FFmpeg output should show you some very important information, bolded below:
the output format: YUV4MPEG2 stream
height and width: 1280x720
framerate: 30001:1001 (or 29.97fps)
colorspace: C420JPEG
not sure what IP: 1 or XYSCSS is

Duration: 01:19:46.74, start: 0.000000, bitrate: 110301 kb/s
Stream #0.0(eng): Video: mjpeg, yuvj420p, 1280x720 [PAR 1:1 DAR 16:9], 108762 kb/s, 29.97 fps, 29.97 tbr, 30k tbn, 30k tbc
Stream #0.1(eng): Audio: pcm_s16be, 48000 Hz, 2 channels, s16, 1536 kb/s
Output #0, yuv4mpegpipe, to 'pipe:':
encoder : Lavf52.64.2
Stream #0.0(eng): Video: mpeg2video, yuv420p, 1280x720 [PAR 1:1 DAR 16:9], q=2-31, 200 kb/s, 90k tbn, 29.97 tbc
Stream mapping:
Stream #0.0 -> #0.0
Press [q] to stop encoding
YUV4MPEG2 W1280 H720 F30000:1001 Ip A1:1 C420jpeg XYSCSS=420JPEG

Sweet, eh?

As a final note, I am a bit confused on the differences between FFMPEG compression algorithms: ffyhuff and ffv1. If someone has pointers to the documentation on these, I'd be interested in finding out more. A google search just added to my confusion.

the mule

mpeg2enc man page
mpeg2enc manual
ffmpeg vs mpeg2enc

related posts

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

VMware virtual appliance for video editing

Over the weekend, I created a VMware Partner Account and got my Fedora 10, x86-64 virtual machine approved to be listed on VMware's Virtual Appliance listings:

If you want to try out Cinelerra and you use 64-bit VMware Player, Workstation or Server, this is an easy way to get started. I'd appreciate someone giving it a shot and letting me know how it works.

the mule

Friday, April 24, 2009

presentation at TCF, 4/25/09

Got my presentation worked out for the Trenton Computer Festival ( tomorrow. It looks ugly, but the content of the presentation should outweigh the aesthetic of the slides:

Update 2009/5/15
Here are a few pics from the talk.

The Mule in front of a LARGE display (only got to 1024x768 resolution, though).

A rapt audience.

The Mule making an important point.

Definitely had some fun, with a little help from my buddy Ironlung on the Mark II 5D.
*** end update ***

The Mule

Sunday, April 05, 2009

animated route in Cinelerra

This was fun. I spent the day perfecting a way to automate a line on a map in Cinelerra. You might think that was a somewhat pedantic exercise, but I think the image I used was very pretty and that the moving line, ala Raiders of the Lost Ark, came out great. What would make it even better would be to use an ancient map of some sort.

Here it is:

a line on a map from crazed mule on Vimeo.

Update 2009/04/07
For some reason, this video is not playing as embedded on this page. Please visit my crazed mule profile on Vimeo to view.

*** end update ***

Using Gimp to Spice Things Up
I created the graphics in Gimp:
-the line representing the route and its shadow
-the circle representing the route's start
-the star representing the route's end

The circle and the star were created using Gfig, the Gimp add-on utility that let's you create geometric shapes. Also note that the shadow of the line matches the position of the light source in the photo of the globe.

Note that the circle and the star are not flat, 2D creations, but they look like stickers pasted on the side of the globe. I acheived that effect by using Gimp's Perspective and Shear tools. Here's a resource that discusses Perspective in Gimp:

I created four images to import in Cinelerra:
1) globe with no Gimp object overlays
2) globe with just the circle as start of route
3) globe with the circle and the line
4) globe with the circle, line and star representing the full trip

Assembling the Images in Cinelerra
The tracks in Cinelerra looked like this:
Top Video Track
image 1 (plain globe) at beginning of timeline and image 4 (all objects) at end of timeline
Bottom Video Track
image 2 (globe and circle) and image 3 (globe, circle and line)

Gradient Created for Line's Movement
The key to the movement of the route was a screen wipe that travelled from the upper left corner of the screen to the lower right, mimicking the direction of the line's travel. Since Cinelerra does not have a built in wipe that moves in this direction, I had to create my own gradient using Gimp and plop it in /usr/local/lib/cinelerra/shapewipe. I then used that gradient in the Shape Wipe video transition tool:

In the timeline picture above, you can see the Shape Wipe transition effect that I used between the image of the map with the circle and the image of the map with the circle and the line.

Here are some resources on wipes and making your own wipe in Cinelerra:

I love the way this turned out, because it looks a s*1tload better than most of the other animated routes I've seen out there. In fact, it blows away the lame route create with Photoshop and After Effects that I read about in VideoMaker magazine this month.

the mule

Saturday, March 14, 2009

motion stabilization tutorial

After reading Jacob's post today:

I realized I never mastered a repeatable method to stabilize shakey video using Cinelerra's motion tracking tool. The Motion effect is very powerful, but also difficult to understand. At least for me. In addition, the manual isn't much help because it is couched in confusing terminology.

The motion tracker can do a lot of different things. However in this post, I am going to keep it simple and only describe how to stabilize shakey video. I made it easy for myself and chose a sample piece of video that bounces around pretty badly:

This movement left and right and up and down is called Translation. Or to a programmer, movement on the Cartesian Coordination System. Before we get into further discussion, familiarize yourself with what the manual says about the motion tracker:

What You Need to Make It Work
Since the manual's description of motion tracking is cryptic, I'm going to try to clarify the muddy waters. In order to stabilize a section of video, you're going to need a few things:
1) a easily identifiable object in your video that will be used to track motion
2) a box that encircles that object. The following is important: this box needs to be wide and tall enough to encompass the range of motion of the shakey video.
3) a video track (master layer) with the range of motion that needs to be stabilized
4) a video track (target layer) that will be stabilized

I would suggest starting small. Just try stabilization with a clip of video that is short (<10seconds) and needs stabilization throughout.

Step 1: Apply the motion effect to the video track you want to stabilize
Like so:

Step 2: Open the Motion tracker effect dialog.
In order to simplify the configuration process for the motion tracker, I've divided the configuration box into the only three sections you'll need to worry about:

Step 3: Enable Draw Vectors (in Section 2 of the graphic above)
You may leave Track Single Frame selected. Also, Frame Number set to 0 means that the motion tracking of your video will start at the beginning of the timeline.

Step 4: Use Translation Block and Search Radius and Block X/Y to fit a box around an easily identifiable object in your video that will be used to track motion (in Section 1 of the graphic above)

In the above picture, you'll notice there are two boxes around the Budweiser sign. The center box around the Budweiser sign is the Translation Block. You'll make the Translation Block fit neatly around the object you're tracking. The outer box is the Translation Search Radius. For the purpose of this tutorial, we'll make the Translation Block always fit within the Translation Search Radius. Below is a graphic depicting these components:

The Translation Search Radius needs to be as large as the range of motion of the video. In other words, the Search Radius needs to be large enough to accommodate all the shaking of your video. If the shaking extends beyond that box, strange things happen, like the motion tracker will start tracking another object in your video. Remember that.

Finally, Block X and Block Y represent the X/Y coordinate location of where you will move your Translation Search Radius.

In sum, you will configure those objects just discussed in the Motion Tracker effect dialog. To review:
1) Encircle the object you want to track with the Translation Block
2) Encompass the entire range of motion of your shakey video inside the Translation Search Radius
3) Use the Block X and Block Y coordinates to move the Translation Search Radius (including the Translation Block) around the screen

It is cumbersome to move the boxes around and X/Y coordinate plane using a round dial. The Translation Block and Search Radius should be drag and drop. The motion tracker interface can definitely be improved upon in this respect.

Step 5: In Section 3 of the Motion config screen, set Action to Track Pixel and set Calculation to Save Coordinates to /tmp
The reason why we do this is that we are going to Track the motion of the video around our selected object (the Translation Block). The coordinates of the movement will be saved in temporary files, which we will later apply to a second track.

You may now either playback the video or render out a test video to see the results of the motion tracking. As the motion effect is very CPU intensive, I would recommend just doing a few seconds of playback or rendering, just to make sure the motion tracker is working properly. I also recommend rendering to a file, as it will be at the same speed as a playback, but will also give you some output that you can replay at will.

Reviewing Vector Paths and Translation Block object
Once you've rendered out a test file, review the vector path to make sure the Motion tracker is always centered on the Translation Block, the object you want to track. I have found that the Motion tracker is easily confused if the object you've chosen to track is a similar color to the background. You'll know it loses track when the arrow on one end of the vector path no longer points to the original object in your translation block.

Also, the Motion tracker will lose track if the Translation Search Radius is not wide enough to capture the entire range of motion of the camera movement. In my Budweiser example, I found that I needed to widen Search Radius to more than half the width of the video so that the Motion tracker would stay on track.

Step 6: In the Motion effect on the original track, deselect Draw Vectors, set Action to Stabilize Pixel and set Calculation to Load Coordinates from /tmp

Step 7: Make a duplicate of your original track
Once you have good motion tracking, you will then be able to apply your saved coordinates to another track or Target Layer. In my Budweiser example, I simply made a duplicate of the track that I generated the coordinates from. One way to make a duplicate of the original track is to:
* in the patch bay of the original track, set both the playback and record to on
* select the entire track (key "a")
* press "c" for copy
* create a new video track (Shift-T)
* in the patch bay of the new track, make sure playback and record are both set to on
* press "v" for paste

This procedure *should* copy the motion effect as well, with the settings from Step 6. If the settings from Step 6 are not in the Motion effect dialog, manually set them.

Step 8: Set the original track to not playback.
The Target Layer (duplicated track) should already be set to playback from the last step.

Step 9: Playback or Render the Video
Again, I suggest to render out the video to a file, as playing back or rendering will take the same amount of time.

Step 10: Analyze your results
You'll find that with motion stabilization, your video will tend to bounce around and you'll see black borders appear along with the motion removal. The easiest way to remove them is to experiment with different zoom levels (Z axis levels) using the Projector (NOT the Camera). For my Budweiser video, I found I needed to zoom in 1.6x. Of course, the side effect is that it may ruin whatever cinematic effect you were trying to achieve. So be advised!

Here were my results from earlier today:
1) The original video:

2) Motion vectors being generated to /tmp:

3) Motion stabilized

4) Video zoomed in to crop after stabilization. Note this crops out most of the interesting content of the video:

Advanced Use
I had a second video that bounced around quite a bit:

This time, I followed my own directions from above, but the resulting video came out jittery and jumpy:

Therefore, I increased the sensitivity of the Motion tracker by increasing Translation Search Steps from 256 to 1024:

This still was not sufficient, as I saw a couple jitters and jumps. I increased Translation Search Steps from 1024 to 8196. Be advised that this took about four times as long to render as having Translation Search Steps set to 1024. But it did remove the jitters and jumps!

The final outcome..sweet!

The Mule

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Adobe 64-bit Flash plugin..and it works!

At the end of November, Adobe released a 64-bit Flash plugin:

And, shocker of shockers, it actually works!

To Install Flash Plugin on x86-64
You'll download the tarball from here:

The only thing in the tarball is To install the 64-bit Flash plugin, simply move into your user's .mozilla/plugins directory and restart Firefox.

Here's a more full set of instructions:

Even more amazing, the bloody thing works on my Fedora 10, x86-64 virtual machine running in VMware Fusion on my MacBook Pro! Yee haw! This will definetly help me as I'm preparing a presentation on Cinelerra for the Trenton Computer Festival in April.

Much thanks to the Adobe Linux team!

the mule

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Fedora 10 x86-64 Cinelerra build

Update 2009/02/24
You can avoid having to build Cinelerra from source by using Nicolas Chauvet's (Kwizart) precompiled Cinelerra installs:
1) install the Kwizart yum repositories

2) install cinelerra-cv
[mule@ogre doc]$ sudo yum install cinelerra-cv* --enablerepo=kwizart
[sudo] password for sfrase:
Loaded plugins: refresh-packagekit
Setting up Install Process
Parsing package install arguments
Resolving Dependencies
--> Running transaction check
---> Package cinelerra-cv.x86_64 0:2.1-21.git20081103.fc10 set to be updated
--> Processing Dependency: bitstream-vera-fonts for package: cinelerra-cv
--> Processing Dependency: libmpeg3-utils for package: cinelerra-cv
---> Package cinelerra-cv-debuginfo.x86_64 0:2.1-21.git20081103.fc10 set to be updated
--> Running transaction check
---> Package libmpeg3-utils.x86_64 0:1.8-1.fc10 set to be updated
---> Package bitstream-vera-fonts.noarch 0:1.10-8 set to be updated
--> Finished Dependency Resolution

Dependencies Resolved

Package Arch Version Repository Size
cinelerra-cv x86_64 2.1-21.git20081103.fc10 kwizart 6.3 M
cinelerra-cv-debuginfo x86_64 2.1-21.git20081103.fc10 kwizart 9.6 M
Installing for dependencies:
bitstream-vera-fonts noarch 1.10-8 fedora 345 k
libmpeg3-utils x86_64 1.8-1.fc10 rpmfusion-free 19 k

Transaction Summary
Install 4 Package(s)
Update 0 Package(s)
Remove 0 Package(s)
Total download size: 16 M
Is this ok [y/N]: y
Downloading Packages:
(1/4): libmpeg3-utils-1.8-1.fc10.x86_64.rpm | 19 kB 00:00
(2/4): bitstream-vera-fonts-1.10-8.noarch.rpm | 345 kB 00:00
(3/4): cinelerra-cv-2.1-21.git20081103.fc10.x86_64.rpm | 6.3 MB 00:05
(4/4): cinelerra-cv-debuginfo-2.1-21.git20081103.fc10.x8 | 9.6 MB 00:11
Total 688 kB/s | 16 MB 00:24
warning: rpmts_HdrFromFdno: Header V3 DSA signature: NOKEY, key ID 5b01f801
kwizart/gpgkey | 1.7 kB 00:00
Importing GPG key 0x5B01F801 "Nicolas Chauvet (kwizart) " from /etc/pki/rpm-gpg/RPM-GPG-KEY-kwizart
Is this ok [y/N]: y
Running rpm_check_debug
Running Transaction Test
Finished Transaction Test
Transaction Test Succeeded
Running Transaction
Installing : libmpeg3-utils 1/4
Installing : bitstream-vera-fonts 2/4
Installing : cinelerra-cv-debuginfo 3/4
Installing : cinelerra-cv 4/4

cinelerra-cv.x86_64 0:2.1-21.git20081103.fc10
cinelerra-cv-debuginfo.x86_64 0:2.1-21.git20081103.fc10

You're done!
*** end update ***

Building from Source
Though editing video on Linux is never easy, I'm happy to say that Fedora 10 is finally stable, after I've resolved or worked around the various bugs I've encountered.

I built Cinelerra from the CVS repository (not Heroine Warrior's) on Fedora 10 x86-64 about a month and a half ago, but haven't had time to post the steps. I can say I've put the Fedora 10 build through its paces by editing all different formats in the context of 1080p video. I will add the caveat that Cinelerra is very choosy about the formats it likes, as shown in my testing results below:

* Note that I haven't tested all combinations of containers and compression schemes, but this is a good first step

The steps are the same as the steps I ran to build Cinelerra on Fedora 9. Though this post will be rather short, consult my Fedora 9 post for all the details. FYI - the Fedora 9 system and Cinelerra build was so fraught with problems that I opted to move on to Fedora 10. I suggest you do the same.

The below steps should all be run as "root" or sudo
1) install Fedora 10
I usually select the Developer's package, as it will include many of the developer libraries necessary to build Cinelerra from source. Be aware that this install is rather large, weighing in at around 7GB.

Update 2008/02/17
After reviewing the storage consuming "Developer" install, I decided to build out a "Custom" install of Fedora. The base + Cinelerra dependencies yielded a slimmer install, at about 3.5GB.

However, for ease of use, it is probably easier to go ahead and install the "Developer" install. I did not do this, and even with all the Cinelerra dependencies checking out as "Found", I encountered three problems:
1) g++ was missing (go ahead and do "yum install gcc-c++" to resolve this)
2) libXv-devel was missing (the Cinelerra make process failed on a libxv header file)
3) libXxf86vm-devel was missing (the Cinelerra process failed on "/usr/bin/ld cannot find -lXxf86vm")

Oh, the fun we have!
*** end update ***

2) add the RPM Fusion repository for yum

3) install the dependencies for Cinelerra
For this step, I've provided a script below that installs all dependent programs for a Cinelerra installation from two repos: Fedora base and RPM Fusion.

Paste the below text into a file, save it and run it as a script. Don't forget to "chmod a+x yourFile" in order to make your script executable. The script will install all the dependencies in order to build Cinelerra
yum install gsm-devel \
libvorbis* \
libogg* \
libtool* \
libtheora* \
libpng* \
libjpeg* \
libtiff* \
esound* \
audiofile* \
libraw1394* \
libavc1394* \
freetype* \
fontconfig* \
nasm \
e2fsprogs* \
OpenEXR* \
fftw \
fftw-devel \
libsndfile* \
libiec61883* \
libdv* \
libquicktime \
ffmpeg \
xvidcore* \
lame \
lame-devel \
a52* \
faad2* \
x264* \
mjpegtools* \
faac* \

4) get the Cinelerra source
git clone git:// cinelerra_source

5) in the Cinelerra source directory, run ./

6) in the Cinelerra source directory, run ./configure

7) As long as configure shows no errors, go ahead and run "make"

8) As long as make showed no errors, run "make install"

That should be it. Again, consult my Fedora 9 Cinelerra install post for more detail on these steps.

Lastly, you could avoid the whole build process and just use my Fedora 10, x86-64 VMware virtual machine, about 3GB, here:
Fedora10 VM

Please drop me a line and let me know how it to hear from you.

Good luck,
The Mule

Saturday, February 07, 2009

the dark of winter has me in its grasp

The Mule has been working long hours for himself and you, valued video compatriots!

That sounds positive, as it should be. Though in truth, I am feeling less positive than that message implies. Personal and professional life has got me down, but is par for the course these days. Oh well. A pithy quote to pick myself up would be rather nice here. Instead, let me regale you of the past weeks activities, as some of the tribulations may help individuals in similar need.

Sh*t Storm
This week, as I look back at my notes, I see a hailstorm of problems that I've dealt with:
-Fedora 10, x86-64 spontaneous system lockups/reboots (workaround: noapic on kernel cmd line)
-pulseaudio screwing up my audio
-usb keyboard stops working (workaround: disable keyboard acceleration)
-Gnome session saving broken (the workaround seems more of a pain than its worth)
-1080p editing eats RAM! (bought more RAM)
-Belkin firewire card causing reboots
-I didn't order my RAM in matched pairs, so I'm stuck waiting until Monday for RAM! (finally got it!)
-Evolution has trouble fetching mail from Comcast's POP servers, so I've reverted to use Pine (now "Alpine")

Needless to say, my productivity dropped and frustration was running high.

The Good News
Knock on wood, I think I was able to workaround the spontaneous reboots using "noapic" boot option to the kernel. Whereas the box was rebooting every six hours, now it has been up a full two days without a reboot! Of course, this isn't a true fix and I will have to submit a bug to the Fedora team. And the other problems still exist.

Most importantly, I've discovered a new scheme for solid, fast 1080P editing in Cinelerra:
1) convert Canon 5D video to MPEG2-TS
2) import into Cinelerra
3) render to any format you need

A Couple of Options
In my initial post on editing Canon 5D video, I found that the easiest way for me to get content from the Canon 5D into Cinelerra was using a conversion to MJPEG. However, the drawback with using mjpeg is that the image quality is lacking. Specifically, the output is darker than the original content. So over the past week, I found two solutions to convert the beautiful output of the Canon:

1) convert to H264 using this two pass string:
ffmpeg -y -i INPUT.MOV -an -v 1 -threads 8 -vcodec libx264 -aspect 1.7777 -b 9000k -bt 7775k -refs 1 -loop 1 -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -parti4x4 1 -partp8x8 1 -me full -subq 1 -me_range 21 -chroma 1 -slice 2 -bf 0 -level 30 -g 300 -keyint_min 30 -sc_threshold 40 -rc_eq 'blurCplx^(1-qComp)' -qcomp 0.7 -qmax 51 -qdiff 4 -i_qfactor 0.71428572 -maxrate 10000k -bufsize 2M -cmp 1 -f mp4 -pass 1 /dev/null

ffmpeg -y -i INPUT.MOV -v 1 -threads 8 -vcodec libx264 -aspect 1.7777 -b 9000k -bt 7775k -refs 1 -loop 1 -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -parti4x4 1 -partp8x8 1 -me full -subq 1 -me_range 21 -chroma 1 -slice 2 -bf 0 -level 30 -g 300 -keyint_min 30 -sc_threshold 40 -rc_eq 'blurCplx^(1-qComp)' -qcomp 0.7 -qmax 51 -qdiff 4 -i_qfactor 0.71428572 -maxrate 10000k -bufsize 2M -acodec libfaac -ab 160k -ar 48000 -ac 2 -cmp 1 -f mp4 -pass 2 OUTPUT.mp4

Now, this H264 content is beautiful, will import into Cinelerra and is editable. However, I found that when I went to render the final output, four minutes of the 1080p, H264 content took SIX HOURS to render!! That is unacceptable. I believe the lengthy render time has something to do with the color space or internal conversion that Cinelerra is doing. This bears further research.

If you're not familiar with H264 (x264 libraries on Linux), here's some useful H264 reference material.

2) convert to MPEG2-TS

Converting Canon to 1080p, MPEG2-TS
Now, there are a few steps here.

a. Take a file from the Canon and use ffmpeg to pass a lossless yuv4mpegpipe stream into mpeg2enc, with the result a video stream with no audio:
ffmpeg -i INPUT.MOV -threads 8 -s 1920x1088 -f yuv4mpegpipe - | mpeg2enc --multi-thread 8 --verbose 0 --aspect 3 --format 13 --frame-rate 5 --video-bitrate 24000 --nonvideo-bitrate 384 --interlace-mode 0 --force-b-b-p --video-buffer 448 --video-norm n --keep-hf --no-constraints --sequence-header-every-gop --min-gop-size 6 --max-gop-size 6 -o OUTPUT.m2v

Next, render out the audio:
ffmpeg -y -i INPUT.MOV -acodec mp2 -ar 44100 -ab 256k -ac 2 OUTPUT.m2a

Using mplex, mux the video and audio streams together:
mplex -f 3 -b 2000 OUTPUT.m2a OUTPUT.m2v -o

Using VLC, convert the MPEG2-PS into an MPEG2-TS:
cvlc --sout '#duplicate{dst=std{access=file,mux=ts,dst="OUTPUT.m2t"}}' vlc://quit

Update 2009/02/13
I've found that VLC is not writing proper keyframes at the beginning of the converted MPEG-PS video output from mplex. This is only for 1080p video. The VLC command for 720p video still works. For the 1080p, I've found a workaround using our savior, ffmpeg:
ffmpeg -y -i -acodec copy -f mpegts -qscale 1 OUTPUT.m2t
*** end update ***

I used this method to output a new version of my Water video from Cinelerra to Vimeo here:

The quality and the colors are definetly improved upon over the old version. However, the larger file size is a drawback (479MB for 4m16s of video). So I'd like to get the H264 output without compression artifacts during the scenes with a lot of motion. So now its time to figure that out. Erg.

In general though, I think this is some good news!

Until the next time,
the mule

Friday, January 30, 2009

high quality h264 output

For the last few years, I've been working with 720P content. With the recent purchase of a Canon 5D, I'm now working with 1080P video. Both formats are in 16:9 aspect ratio.

720P video implies a horizontal resolution of 1280 pixels, 1280x720 frame resolution with a total of 921,600 pixels.

1080P video implies a horizontal resolution of 1920 pixels, 1920x1080 frame resolution with a total of 2,073,600 pixels.

Though this is a blog on Linux video editing, I heartily welcome good information on the often confusing subject of video compression. Here is an article on Apple's site that conveys the basic information you'll need to understand about encoding H264 videos:

As I work to produce higher quality video, one of the things I've thought about is the possibility of getting my material aired on cable TV. So the Broadcast Standards discussion in the above Wikipedia article was very interesting. Also, it occurred to me that I've never properly understood the differences between fields and frames, in the context of telecine, or how film is transferred to video. The Wiki article above clarified it for me and is highly recommended. Fields and frames are also useful in the context of how Cinelerra processes video.

Rendering High Quality H264 video
It is important to understand aspect ratio in the context of rendering high quality video. Lately, I've been encoding H264 video; specifically, I've been reducing the size of my videos to load onto an iPhone/iTouch. For this task, one of the easiest ways to assure best output quality is to make sure that both the height and width of the rendered output are divisible by 16.

Without going into the highly technical details of the H.264/MPEG-4 AVC standard or how video compression works, here is a somewhat simplistic analysis:
"'s slightly better to have dimensions divisible by 16, but only because H.264 divides up a picture into 16x16 blocks and if you have a partial block it still has to expend time and bandwidth on it.

A size that is an exact multiple of 16 H & V will compress a tiny bit more efficiently, or look slightly better at the same bitrate."

-extracted from this conversation

To make sure the dimensions of my videos are always divisible by 16, you can do the calculations yourself, or take a look at a couple nice charts from Andrew Armstrong's site to help you choose dimensions where the height and width are both divisible by 16. To make it easy for you, there are only a few choices:

This will avoid the dread "width or height not divisible by 16, compression will suffer" error you would see in many H264 encoders.

Robert Swain's blog was very helpful in determining x264 parameters that yield great looking video. Especially the page regarding ffmpeg presets, though I haven't yet determined what preset is best for my content. The presets listed on Robert's page need to be put into a .ffmpeg directory under your user's home directory.

Finally, this bitrate calculator for Adobe's Flash Videos was something useful I stumbled up while researching this post:

the Mule

Sunday, January 25, 2009

stock footage, encoding H264 and the iPod

I had a bit of a rough day yesterday. I started early, about 8am, upgrading my MacBook Pro to Leopard. That process went more or less smoothly and finished around noon. Next, I had taken some video the night before and wanted to create a video that would serve as a table of contents to my archive. Also, this short video might enable me to market some of my source material as stock footage. So it might be a fun little project that shouldn't take long. I should know to never say "shouldn't take too long", because things have a way of blowing up in your face when you don't expect them to.

Converting 1080P directly to an iPod-ready format
The goal was to convert some 1080P video from my Canon 5D directly into an iPod readable format. However, as I was overly tired on this day, my mind defeated me. Essentially what happened was that after I rendered out the video and loaded it to the iPod, I kept seeing only three quarters of the video. Flummoxed, I thought it must be a rendering problem. Long story short, I found that the problem was not with my rendering parameters, but the fact that my iTouch has a zoom/scaling feature that I forgot about, but had enabled. Here is the little bugger:

So I had spent about three hours until 2am fighting with encoding parameters, re-encoding video, transferring many test files to my Mac and then loading them to the iPod, only to find that the source of the problem was this little stupid icon on the iTouch.

Boy, am I dense.

A Learning Experience
I did learn a few things through my travails this weekend:
1) The el cheapo haze filter on my camera shows a lot of lens flare and needs to be replaced.

2) Don't merge a longer audio stream with a shorter video stream or else you'll be wondering why your 1m45s video is suddenly 9m30s. Duh.

3) When encoding videos to H264 format, always try to use resolutions where the height and width are divisible by 16. This will make the level of compression and quality of the resulting video better. I will post separately about resolutions that are divisible by 16.

4) A dvd video encoded by ffmpeg using -target ntsc-dvd and then downrezzed using the following command syntax will NOT have the proper aspect ratio once loaded onto the iPod:
ffmpeg -y -i ${NAME}.mpg -an -v 1 -threads 8 -vcodec h264 -b 250k -bt 175k -refs 1 -loop 1 -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -parti4x4 1 -partp8x8 1 -me full -subq 1 -me_range 21 -chroma 1 -slice 2 -bf 0 -level 30 -g 300 -keyint_min 30 -sc_threshold 40 -rc_eq 'blurCplx^(1-qComp)' -qcomp 0.7 -qmax 51 -qdiff 4 -i_qfactor 0.71428572 -maxrate 450k -bufsize 2M -cmp 1 -s 720x480 -f mp4 -pass 1 /dev/null

ffmpeg -y -i ${NAME}.mpg -v 1 -threads 8 -vcodec h264 -b 250k -bt 175k -refs 1 -loop 1 -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -parti4x4 1 -partp8x8 1 -me full -subq 6 -me_range 21 -chroma 1 -slice 2 -bf 0 -level 30 -g 300 -keyint_min 30 -sc_threshold 40 -rc_eq 'blurCplx^(1-qComp)' -qcomp 0.7 -qmax 51 -qdiff 4 -i_qfactor 0.71428572 -maxrate 450k -bufsize 2M -cmp 1 -s 720x480 -acodec aac -ab 160k -ar 48000 -ac 2 -f mp4 -pass 2 -threads 8 ${NAME}.mp4

So don't try that at home, kids.

I had previously been using this string of encoding parameters to encode a video of my band rehearsals. The encode was from a DVD source file, so perhaps I will just use the 1080P as source going forward. I will have to test this out first. Strangely, the conversion of the audio from AC3 format had audible hiccups from time to time. Since this process was working fine on Fedora 7, perhaps this is just an issue with Fedora 10.

Downrezzed 1080P Video Ready for the iPod
The following two pass Cinelerra encoding parameters via yuv4mpeg stream worked well to produce a high quality video from 1080P source. In short, you will do two renders from a YUV4MPEG stream:
render 1: the pipe to /dev/null in order to create the optimization log
render 2: the pipe to create the file

ffmpeg -f yuv4mpegpipe -y -i - -an -v 1 -threads 8 -vcodec libx264 -b 1000k -bt 775k -refs 1 -loop 1 -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -parti4x4 1 -partp8x8 1 -me full -subq 1 -me_range 21 -chroma 1 -slice 2 -bf 0 -level 30 -g 300 -keyint_min 30 -sc_threshold 40 -rc_eq 'blurCplx^(1-qComp)' -qcomp 0.7 -qmax 51 -qdiff 4 -i_qfactor 0.71428572 -maxrate 1000k -bufsize 2M -cmp 1 -s 512x288 -f mp4 -pass 1 /dev/null


ffmpeg -f yuv4mpegpipe -y -i - -i /mnt/videos/projects/2009_01_23/nightUrbanIndustrialIpod.mp3 -v 1 -threads 8 -vcodec libx264 -b 1000k -bt 775k -refs 1 -loop 1 -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -parti4x4 1 -partp8x8 1 -me full -subq 6 -me_range 21 -chroma 1 -slice 2 -bf 0 -level 30 -g 300 -keyint_min 30 -sc_threshold 40 -rc_eq 'blurCplx^(1-qComp)' -qcomp 0.7 -qmax 51 -qdiff 4 -i_qfactor 0.71428572 -maxrate 1000k -bufsize 2M -cmp 1 -s 512x288 -acodec libfaac -ab 160k -ar 48000 -ac 2 -f mp4 -pass 2 -threads 8 %

I chose a resolution of 512x288 because:
1) the aspect ratio is the same as my 1080P source video, 16:9 (1.777)
2) both the height and width are divisible by 16
3) there were no errors and it comes out looking great on the iPod

Rendering Parameters for a High Quality Vimeo Upload
Finally, I was able to output an H264 video at 1920x1080 that looks great in Vimeo. Psych! I was able to remove the ugly bottom bar seen in Vimeo from my previous post. Here is the two-pass encoding method that I used from Cinelerra. Two notes:
1) the two passes are YUV4MPEG stream renders from Cinelerra using FFMPEG and will need to be run as individual renders in Cinelerra.
2) the second pass muxes (combines) a pre-rendered audio stream with the video stream. So you'll need to render that audio file first.

Here is your first render command string (the first pass of the two-pass) that will create the optimization log:
ffmpeg -f yuv4mpegpipe -y -i - -an -v 1 -threads 8 -vcodec libx264 -aspect 1.7777 -b 9000k -bt 7775k -refs 1 -loop 1 -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -parti4x4 1 -partp8x8 1 -me full -subq 1 -me_range 21 -chroma 1 -slice 2 -bf 0 -level 30 -g 300 -keyint_min 30 -sc_threshold 40 -rc_eq 'blurCplx^(1-qComp)' -qcomp 0.7 -qmax 51 -qdiff 4 -i_qfactor 0.71428572 -maxrate 10000k -bufsize 2M -cmp 1 -f mp4 -pass 1 /dev/null

Here is the second render command that takes advantage of the optimization log created in the first-pass render. I rendered an audio file of my project earlier, so this second command also combines that audio file with the video for my final result:
ffmpeg -f yuv4mpegpipe -y -i - -i /mnt/videos/projects/blog/waterSmall.mp3 -v 1 -threads 8 -vcodec libx264 -aspect 1.7777 -b 9000k -bt 7775k -refs 1 -loop 1 -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -parti4x4 1 -partp8x8 1 -me full -subq 1 -me_range 21 -chroma 1 -slice 2 -bf 0 -level 30 -g 300 -keyint_min 30 -sc_threshold 40 -rc_eq 'blurCplx^(1-qComp)' -qcomp 0.7 -qmax 51 -qdiff 4 -i_qfactor 0.71428572 -maxrate 10000k -bufsize 2M -acodec libfaac -ab 160k -ar 48000 -ac 2 -cmp 1 -f mp4 -pass 2 %

I think the quality is bloody AWESOME! Take a gander:

2009/01/23: night, urban, industrial from crazed mule on Vimeo.

Through pain, there can sometimes be the brighter side. In this case, I learned a few things. In retrospect, I may have chosen my production company's name correctly. A mule is one stubborn beast.

Related to crazed mules, here is a story I stumbled upon the other day you might find funny:
The Day the Mules Went Crazy

The Mule

H264 Encoding

Monday, January 12, 2009

Water, a new Canon 5D video

After a couple of weeks of gathering content, I completed my first real Cinelerra project using the 1080P output from my brand new Canon EOS 5D Mark II.

This camera outputs some gorgeous video as I showed in my last post. Now I have to learn how to shoot with it!

The Project
My goal with this short production was:
1) to show the capabilities of the camera
2) to prove that Cinelerra was up to the task of editing 1080P content
3) to output the final results to different output formats (media player, Vimeo, back into Cinelerra)

I'm a hobbyist, so I don't have a budget and "script" like Vincent Laforet. However, I like to compile scenes and organize them with musical accompaniment in thoughtful ways that are (hopefully) enjoyable to the viewer.

The Images
Since I am not a professional photographer, I did not have a slew of lenses before I bought the cam. I only used two lenses that I recently bought for this video:
Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM Lens
Canon EF 50mm f1.4 USM Lens

In regards to the imagery, about half of the shots were taken with a tripod. Where you see shakey video is obviously where I held the cam by hand. You definetly do NOT want to shoot high definition video by hand. It serves to amplify any wobbling present and looks terrible when presented on a high definition television. One thing that saved me was the stabilization provided by the Canon L series zoom lens. It is very effective in dampening bounces, though the stabilization mechanism is loud and is picked up by the camera's poor quality, but usable internal stereo microphone.

I used the 50mm mainly for the indoor shots and the zoom for the outdoor shots. I shot some of the outdoor night shots with the zoom, but then realized that the zoom doesn't do well in low light conditions since it has such a long zoom barrel. So just last week, I bought the 50mm. The 50mm fixed length (prime) lens really makes night shots clear with none of the spotty, dappled artifacts that you see with high ISO night shots. During the video, you'll notice those artifacts on the shot of the ferry.

Note that I used no filters on the shots..what you see in the video is truly what you get with the camera. As I gain expertise with the camera, I look forward to acquiring lenses over the next few years.

The Editing Process
The editing process has been a bit of a challenge, as the native output from the camera does not import cleanly into Cinelerra. Hence, I needed to transcode the native output into something more Cinelerra friendly, which I discuss in earlier posts:

I didn't want to revisit the conversion process, so I opted to use the MJPEG conversion command I previously discovered:
ffmpeg -i -b 3000k -vcodec mjpeg -ab 256k -ar 44100 -acodec libfaac -coder 1 -flags +loop -cmp +chroma -partitions +parti4x4+partp8x8+partb8x8 -subq 5 -me_range 16 -g 250 -keyint_min 25 -sc_threshold 40 -i_qfactor 0.71

Once loaded in Cinelerra, I found I had quite a few assets from the last couple weeks of shooting.

If I could have one improvement made to the software, it would be to add folders to the Media bin in order to better manage assets.

I went about editing the video as normal. I applied only time-based effects, like speeding up or slowing down the video, and transitions. The time-based effects were accomplished by attaching the ReframeRT video effect:

I needed to output files from the project for different purposes:
1) to reimport back into Cinelerra (JPEG or MJPEG Quicktime video)
2) to export/render a format usable with my MG-350HD Media Player
(1080I/1080P MPEG2 video)
3) to export/render a format usable for Vimeo (720P MPEG2)

For #1, I exported a Quicktime for Linux container, using MJPEG compression. I just needed the video, so I had no audio on the export. I was able to reimport the resulting file easily into Cinelerra.

For #2, I rendered the video using a YUV4MPEG pipe. I needed to adjust the pipe command to export a different format and higher video bitrate.
mpeg2enc --verbose 0 --aspect 3 --format 13 --frame-rate 4 --video-bitrate 24000 --nonvideo-bitrate 384 --interlace-mode 0 --force-b-b-p --video-buffer 448 --video-norm n --keep-hf --no-constraints --sequence-header-every-gop --min-gop-size 6 --max-gop-size 6 -o %

Using mplex, I then combined the video stream with an existing audio track to an MPEG2 Program Stream:
mplex -f 3 -b 2000 canon5d.m2a canon5d.m2v -o

Finally, I converted the program stream to an MPEG2 Transport Stream using vlc:
cvlc --sout '#duplicate{dst=std{access=file,mux=ts,dst="canon5d.m2t"}}' vlc:quit

For #3, I reduced the 1080i/p output to 720P using FFMPEG:
ffmpeg -i canon5d.m2t -target ntsc-dvd -s 1280x720 -qscale 1 -threads 8 canon5d.mpg

Update 2008/01/13
I hadn't noticed before, but after I uploaded the 720P file to Vimeo, there was a little bit of a line on the bottom of the video. I am going to have to revisit the edit to make sure I didn't mess something up.
*** end update ***

I think the quality of the output can definitely be improved. However, I am glad that I was able to output to formats usable across different platforms (HDTV/Internet/Linux-Cinelerra).

Update 2008/02/08
I've been working on improving the quality of the output from Cinelerra. Specifically, instead of using MJPEG source files (the first conversion from the cam), I'm converting the Canon's video to MPEG2-TS. The MPEG2-TS format has very nice quality and edits quickly in Cinelerra. Here's the full skinny:
*** end update ***

In Sum
Dealing with a new media format in Linux and Cinelerra is never easy. But if you have patience, it is very satisfying to get a project done that makes your friends say "Wow" or have a laugh.

the mule

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Canon 5D Mark II video: Cinelerra edit

Well folks, I got myself quite a present for Christmas: the Canon EOS 5D Mark II:
Amazon: Canon EOS 5D Mark II

I've acquired a bit of video over the first few days with the cam. Now let's make sure I can edit the bloody stuff in Cinelerra! :)

Update 1/14/2009
I've done a full edit session with the output of the 5D. Lovely!
*** end update ***

I've found the following process works pretty well.

1) Convert video to a Cinelerra-usable format
As I explained in one of my earlier posts, mjpeg seems a good format to convert the H264 output of the cam:
[mule@ogre 2008_12_26]$ ffmpeg -i MVI_0072.MOV -b 3000k -vcodec mjpeg -ab 256k -ar 44100 -acodec libfaac -coder 1 -flags +loop -cmp +chroma -partitions +parti4x4+partp8x8+partb8x8 -subq 5 -me_range 16 -g 250 -keyint_min 25 -sc_threshold 40 -i_qfactor 0.71

Here's an image that compares the original, Canon saved H264 video to the MJPEG conversion:

Pretty close, eh? The MJPEG video seems a little lighter and you can see more detail, though the colors are a little washed out.

2) Import into Cinelerra
Unlike the H264 format the Canon saves, the MJPEG conversion imports cleanly into Cinelerra without error messages. Also, on my dual, quad core Dell running Fedora 10, I get about 18fps playing back the raw video. Nice.

3) Render to YUV4MPEG stream as H264 video
I do this step in two parts:

a. Render the audio
The Canon stores its audio in 44Khz, 16-bit PCM format. I rendered out an MPEGI, Layer2 audio file:
Input File : 'stdin' 44.1 kHz

Output File: '/mnt/videos/projects/2008_12_26/audioTrack.m2a'

256 kbps MPEG-1 Layer II j-stereo Psy model 1

[De-emph:Off Copyright:No Original:No CRC:Off]
[Padding:Normal Byte-swap:Off Chanswap:Off DAB:Off]
ATH adjustment 0.000000
encode_init: using tablenum 0 with sblimit 27
Hit end of audio data

Avg slots/frame = 768.000; b/smp = 5.33; bitrate = 256.000 kbps
Render::run: Session finished.

b. Render a YUV4MPEG stream. Using the following pipe, I combine the audio track that was output in the previous step with the video that is being rendered:
ffmpeg -f yuv4mpegpipe -y -i - -i /mnt/videos/projects/2008_12_26/audioTrack.m2a -b 3000k -vcodec libx264 -ab 256k -ar 44100 -acodec libfaac -coder 1 -flags +loop -cmp +chroma -partitions +parti4x4+partp8x8+partb8x8 -subq 5 -me_range 16 -g 250 -keyint_min 25 -sc_threshold 40 -i_qfactor 0.71 %

Step B is very similar to the advanced rendering technique I showed you in the Beginner's Guide to Exporting Video from Cinelerra. Here's how the render looks in a terminal window:
Input #0, yuv4mpegpipe, from 'pipe:':
Duration: N/A, bitrate: N/A
Stream #0.0: Video: rawvideo, yuv420p, 1920x1080, 30.00 tb(r)
Input #1, mp3, from '/mnt/videos/projects/2008_12_26/audioTrack.m2a':
Duration: 00:00:28.42, start: 0.000000, bitrate: 255 kb/s
Stream #1.0: Audio: mp2, 44100 Hz, stereo, s16, 256 kb/s
Output #0, mp4, to '/mnt/videos/projects/2008_12_26/mvi_0072_h264.mp4':
Stream #0.0: Video: libx264, yuv420p, 1920x1080 [PAR 1:1 DAR 16:9], q=2-31, 3000 kb/s, 30.00 tb(c)
Stream #0.1: Audio: libfaac, 44100 Hz, stereo, s16, 256 kb/s
Stream mapping:
Stream #0.0 -> #0.0
Stream #1.0 -> #0.1
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]using SAR=1/1
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]using cpu capabilities: MMX2 SSE2Fast SSSE3 Cache64
frame= 852 fps= 5 q=5.0 Lsize= 18223kB time=28.35 bitrate=5265.6kbits/s
video:17680kB audio:526kB global headers:0kB muxing overhead 0.092246%
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]slice I:4 Avg QP:27.33 size: 74266
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]slice P:848 Avg QP:28.42 size: 21000
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]mb I I16..4: 61.4% 0.0% 38.6%
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]mb P I16..4: 16.9% 0.0% 2.2% P16..4: 28.4% 8.9% 1.0% 0.0% 0.0% skip:42.6%
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]final ratefactor: 35.54
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]SSIM Mean Y:0.9495821
[libx264 @ 0x1ec6200]kb/s:5099.9
Render::run: Session finished.

The Result
Comparing the resulting video, the quality seems acceptable, though a bit dark and drained of color in comparison to the original. Notice the removal of the color bands in the sky:

That's a bit of a bummer. I am going to have to investigate how to improve the quality, especially the color.

However, you can't argue with the efficiency of the file size of the H264. Here's a comparison of all three files:
-rw-r--r--    1 mule  ogre       138M Jan  3 16:04 MVI_0072orig.MOV (ORIGINAL)
-rw-r--r-- 1 mule ogre 164M Jan 3 16:02 MVI_0072_convert.MOV (MJPEG CONVERSION)
-rw-r--r-- 1 mule ogre 17M Jan 3 20:02 mvi_0072_h264.mp4 (H264 FINAL)

All in all, its still pretty cool.

Here is the video on Vimeo:

Since I'm on Fedora, the Vimeo uploader seems to hang. So for Fedora (and I'm sure other Linux distributions) uploads seem to work better using the Basic Uploader:
Thanks Raffa!

Keep you posted,
The Mule