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ffcvt - ffmpeg convert wrapper tool

Latest Update(s)

Release v1.7.3

  • Now able to split video into multiple segments. Details in #16

Release v1.7.2

Release v1.7.1

Added option -C which allows cutting multiple segments.

For further details, check out the wiki https://git.io/JuK0c, in which the source file of

https://user-images.githubusercontent.com/422244/132961501-a2344db0-c48c-4a57-90fa-c3746bf3025f.mp4

is cut-short into

https://user-images.githubusercontent.com/422244/132961530-ea65cd03-19f8-4e7c-a871-40218f7289cc.mp4

Release v1.7.0

Added wx type for weixin.

Convert to video that is recognizable and playable by weixin/wechat, by using the -t wx option as the convertion type. Here is a converted sample:

https://user-images.githubusercontent.com/422244/132617136-e1371ef3-6a21-4f12-8324-6db003c12468.mp4

(credit here)

For further details, check out the wiki https://git.io/JuK0q

Introduction

  • The next-generation codec like High Efficiency Video codec (HEVC), H.265 or VP9 can produce videos visually comparable to H.264's result, but in about half the file size.
  • Meanwhile the Opus audio codec is becoming the best thing ever for compressing audio -- A 64K Opus audio stream is comparable to mp3 files of 128K to 256K bandwidth.
  • Such fantastic high efficiency audio/video codec/encoding capability has long been available in ffmpeg, but fewer people know it or use it, partly because the ffmpeg command line is not that simple for every one.
  • The ffcvt is designed to take the burden from normal Joe -- All you need to do to encode a video is to give one parameter to ffcvt, i.e., the path and file name of the video to be encoded, and ffcvt will take care of the rest, using the recommended values for both audio/video encoding to properly encode it for you.
  • It can't be more simpler than that. However, beneath the simple surface, ffcvt is versatile and powerful enough to allow you to touch every corner of audio/video encoding. There is a huge list of environment variables (or command-line parameters) which will allow you tweak the encoding methods and parameters to exactly what you prefer instead.
  • Moreover, to encode a directory full of video files, including under its sub-directories, you need just to give ffcvt one single parameter, the directory location, and ffcvt will go ahead and encode all video files under that directory, including all its sub-directories as well.

Quick Usage

There is a quick usage help that comes with ffcvt, produced when it is invoked without any parameters:

$ ffcvt

Usage:
 ffcvt [flags] 

Flags:

  -t	target type: webm/x265-opus/x264-mp3/wx/youtube (FFCVT_T)
  -ves	video encoding method set (FFCVT_VES)
  -aes	audio encoding method set (FFCVT_AES)
  -ses	subtitle encoding method set (FFCVT_SES)
  -vep	video encoding method prepend (FFCVT_VEP)
  -aep	audio encoding method prepend (FFCVT_AEP)
  -sep	subtitle encoding method prepend (FFCVT_SEP)
  -vea	video encoding method append (FFCVT_VEA)
  -aea	audio encoding method append (FFCVT_AEA)
  -abr	audio bitrate (64k for opus, 256k for mp3) (FFCVT_ABR)
  -crf	the CRF value: 0-51. Higher CRF gives lower quality
	 (28 for x265, ~ 23 for x264) (FFCVT_CRF)

  -d	directory that hold input files (FFCVT_D)
  -f	input file name (either -d or -f must be specified) (FFCVT_F)
  -sym	symlinks will be processed as well (FFCVT_SYM)
  -exts	extension list for all the files to be queued (FFCVT_EXTS)
  -suf	suffix to the output file names (FFCVT_SUF)
  -ext	extension for the output file (FFCVT_EXT)
  -w	work directory that hold output files (FFCVT_W)

  -ac	copy audio codec (FFCVT_AC)
  -vc	copy video codec (FFCVT_VC)
  -an	no audio, output video only (FFCVT_AN)
  -vn	no video, output audio only (FFCVT_VN)
  -vss	video: same size (FFCVT_VSS)
  -C,Cut	Cut segment(s) out to keep. Specify in the form of start-[end],
	strictly in the format of hh:mm:ss, and may repeat (FFCVT_C,CUT)
  -S,Seg	Split video into multiple segments (strictly in format: hh:mm:ss) (FFCVT_S,SEG)
  -lang	language selection for audio stream extraction (FFCVT_LANG)
  -sel	subtitle encoding language (language picked for reencoded video) (FFCVT_SEL)
  -o	more options that will pass to ffmpeg program (FFCVT_O)
  -ato-opus	audio encode to opus, using -abr (FFCVT_ATO_OPUS)
  -vto-x265	video video encode to x265, using -crf (FFCVT_VTO_X265)

  -p	par2create, create par2 files (in work directory) (FFCVT_P)
  -nc	no clobber, do not queue those already been converted (FFCVT_NC)
  -n	no exec, dry run (FFCVT_N)

  -force	overwrite any existing none-empty file (FFCVT_FORCE)
  -debug	debugging level (FFCVT_DEBUG)
  -ffmpeg	ffmpeg program executable name (FFCVT_FFMPEG)
  -ffprobe	ffprobe program execution (FFCVT_FFPROBE)
  -version	print version then exit (FFCVT_VERSION)

Details:

  -C value
    	Cut segment(s) out to keep. Specify in the form of start-[end],
    		strictly in the format of hh:mm:ss, and may repeat
  -Cut value
    	Cut segment(s) out to keep. Specify in the form of start-[end],
    		strictly in the format of hh:mm:ss, and may repeat
  -S string
    	Split video into multiple segments (strictly in format: hh:mm:ss)
  -Seg string
    	Split video into multiple segments (strictly in format: hh:mm:ss)
  -abr string
    	audio bitrate (64k for opus, 256k for mp3)
  -ac
    	copy audio codec
  -aea string
    	audio encoding method append
  -aep string
    	audio encoding method prepend
  -aes string
    	audio encoding method set
  -an
    	no audio, output video only
  -ato-opus
    	audio encode to opus, using -abr
  -crf string
    	the CRF value: 0-51. Higher CRF gives lower quality
    		 (28 for x265, ~ 23 for x264)
  -d string
    	directory that hold input files
  -debug int
    	debugging level (default 1)
  -ext string
    	extension for the output file
  -exts string
    	extension list for all the files to be queued (default ".3GP.3G2.ASF.AVI.DAT.DIVX.FLV.M2TS.M4V.MKV.MOV.MPEG.MP4.MPG.RMVB.RM.TS.VOB.WEBM.WMV")
  -f string
    	input file name (either -d or -f must be specified)
  -ffmpeg string
    	ffmpeg program executable name (default "ffmpeg")
  -ffprobe string
    	ffprobe program execution (default "ffprobe -print_format flat")
  -force
    	overwrite any existing none-empty file
  -lang string
    	language selection for audio stream extraction (default "eng")
  -n	no exec, dry run
  -nc
    	no clobber, do not queue those already been converted
  -o string
    	more options that will pass to ffmpeg program
  -p	par2create, create par2 files (in work directory)
  -sel value
    	subtitle encoding language (language picked for reencoded video)
  -sep string
    	subtitle encoding method prepend
  -ses string
    	subtitle encoding method set
  -suf string
    	suffix to the output file names
  -sym
    	symlinks will be processed as well
  -t string
    	target type: webm/x265-opus/x264-mp3/wx/youtube (default "webm")
  -vc
    	copy video codec
  -vea string
    	video encoding method append
  -vep string
    	video encoding method prepend
  -version
    	print version then exit
  -ves string
    	video encoding method set
  -vn
    	no video, output audio only
  -vss
    	video: same size (default true)
  -vto-x265
    	video video encode to x265, using -crf
  -w string
    	work directory that hold output files

To reduce output, use `-debug 0`, e.g., `ffcvt -force -debug 0 -f testf.mp4 ...`

Environment Variables

For each ffcvt command line parameter, there is a environment variable corresponding to it. For example you can use export FFCVT_FFMPEG=avconv to use avconv instead of ffmpeg (Don't, I use it for my CommandLineArgs to develop/test ffcvt without invoking ffmpeg each time).

Encoding Help

The detailed guide to choose/provide proper parameters to ffcvt have been moved to wiki. For example,

Please check them out in the wiki, and for other documents like "Most used ffmpeg options", "How to crop a video", etc.

Download/Install

Using apt

The ffcvt is now officially in Debian repository, so the installation is now as simple as a apt install/apt-get install:

apt install ffcvt

Download binaries

  • The latest binary executables are available under
    https://bintray.com/suntong/bin/ffcvt/latest
    as the result of the Continuous-Integration process.
  • I.e., they are built right from the source code during every git commit automatically by travis-ci.
  • Pick & choose the binary executable that suits your OS and its architecture. E.g., for Linux, it would most probably be the ffcvt-linux-amd64 file. If your OS and its architecture is not available in the download list, please let me know and I'll add it.
  • You may want to rename it to a shorter name instead, e.g., ffcvt, after downloading it.

Debian package

Debian package repo is available at https://dl.bintray.com/suntong/deb. The browse-able repo view is at https://bintray.com/suntong/deb.

echo "deb [trusted=yes] https://dl.bintray.com/suntong/deb all main" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/suntong-debs.list
sudo apt-get update

sudo chmod 644 /etc/apt/sources.list.d/suntong-debs.list
apt-cache policy ffcvt

sudo apt-get install -y ffcvt

Install Source

If you prefer to compile and install ffcvt from source, although a manual process, it's pretty straightforward and simple.

  1. Get the source via git clone or go get.
  2. Do cd ffcvt, then issue go build without any other parameters.
  3. Copy the generated executable somewhere in the PATH

That's it, it's ready to roll.

Tools Choices

As suggested before, don't use avconv, use ffmpeg instead (the avconv fork was more for political reasons. I personally believe ffmpeg is technically superior although might not be politically).

As for video/movie play back, use mpv. It is a fork of mplayer2 and MPlayer, and is a true modern all-in-one movie player that can play ANYTHING, and one of the few movie players being actively developed all the time. Download link is in mpv.io, from which Ubuntu repo I get my Ubuntu ffmpeg package as well. If you are unsatisfied with mpv's simple user interface, check out https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Mpv#Front_ends.

Author(s)

Tong SUN
suntong from cpan.org

All patches welcome.


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