Compress WTV to Smaller as well as Retain Much Quality?

Tags: compress wtv, compress wtv to avi, compress wtv to mp4, compress wtv to h.264, compress wtv to wmv, wtv compressor, wtv to zune, wtv to android, wtv to ps3, wtv to youtube, edit wtv in imovie


It's fantastic for recording favorite TV shows using Windows Media Center, but at about 2 to 6GB per hour, the recorded TV folder fills up pretty quick. Normally you'd be able to export the recorded files to DVD using Media Center; however it can't be done because the WTV files is too large to fit the DVD disc and some WTV files cannot be burned to DVD as they are in H.264 content.

In most cases, you will need to compress WTV files to smaller to fit to the DVD disc or save your hard discs. WTV format uses MPEG-2 as video compression and MPEG-1 Layer II or Dolby Digital AC-3 as audio compression. Since MPEG-2 video and MPEG-1 Layer II or Dolby Digital AC-3 are not optimized for low bit-rates, so given the same quality, WTV format is always quite larger in File size comparing other highly compressed video format such as H.264 MPEG4, WebM.

To compress WTV files to much smaller, the best method is to convert WTV to a format that is highly compressed. What format will give smaller file size and what format will retain much quality of video?

I did a test by converting 144MB WTV files to AVI, WMV, MKV, H.264 MP4, QuickTime MOV and WebM using Bigasoft WTV Converter. The file size and quality is as follow.

Format File Size Video Quality Video bitrate
H.264 MP4 8.92MB better 768
AVI 15.00 MB inferior 1200
QuickTime MOV 15.20 MB inferior 768
MKV 15.50 MB inferior 1200
WMV 18.40 MB inferior 1200
WebM 30.20 MB best 1200

Testing Results

Compress in File Size

H.264 MP4 gives the smallest file size for compressing WTV. Compressing WTV to H.264 MPEG-4 is an ideal solution if you your media players can play H.264 MPEG-4 video and if you are trying to move WTV to portable devices like Zune, PSP, iPad, iPhone, iPod and other MP4 players.

WebM gives the largest file size for compress WTV. The other three AVI, QuickTime MOV, WMV gives basically quite same file size when compress WTV.

Compress Video quality

Converting WTV to WebM format gives the best quality. It seems the quality is even better than the original. H.264 gives the second best output quality. The other three format AVI, QuickTime MOV, WMV gives basically quite same output video quality when compress WTV.

Compress Quality Comparison

Compress Quality Comparison

What is the Ideal Format to Use for Compress WTV files?

I'd vote H.264 MPEG-4 as the winner for the smallest output file size as well as the second best output image quality among the compared video formats. Besides, H.264 is more compatible with editing programs such as Sony Vegas, MAGIX Movie Edit Pro, Adobe Premiere, Avid, iMovie and portable players like Zune, PSP, iPad, iPhone, iPod and other MP4 players.

Of course, if you have media players (such as Android phones and Android Tab )compatible with WebM and if your concern is for HTML5 video or uploading WTV to YouTube, it is good idea to compress WTV to WebM as it gives the best video quality even better than the original.

For Windows users, if your concern is for burning DVD or edit with Windows Movie Maker, you can compress WTV by converting WTV to AVI. If you do care the video quality, you can use Bigasoft WTV Converter to adjust video bitrate to increase video quality.

3 Steps to Compress WTV Files to Smaller Size by Converting WTV to H.264 MPEG-4, AVI, WebM

  • Make Preparation: Free Download Bigasoft WTV Converter (for Windows, for Mac). Run and install.

  • Step 1 Import WTV file

    Press "Add File" button to import your WTV file. Or you can also drag your WTV files directly to the main interface of Bigasoft WTV Converter.

  • WTV to H.264

  • Step 2 Set output format
    Take compress WTV to H.264 MP4 for example.

    Click the drop-down button on the right side of the "Profile" button to select H.264/MPEG-4 AVC video as output format from the "General Video" category.

    Edit before convert
    you can edit WTV files like trim and crop to remove commercials, split large files to smaller, crop to focus video and join several video files into one, set aspect ratio from to 16:9 or 4:3. All the functions can be applied in the Editing Window which can be opened by clicking "Effect" in the main menu.

  • Step 3 Convert
    Click "Convert" button to begin the conversion.
    Free Download WTV Converter for Mac
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