Working with video files requires none to a high level of encoding and decoding knowledge depending on the actual task and the tools you are using in getting the job done. Whether it is a simple re-encoding for better compatibility with your DVD player or a vast set of tasks including video stream resizing, cropping, subtitle hardcoding or further compression and audio stream conversion in order to get your desired outcome, you will find yourself in need of multiple tools. AVI ReComp does that by unifying the necessary components and putting them together in a very useful application that will help you recompress your AVI video files.
It takes more than a simple idea to create the desirable outcome. It is just the start and everything that follows dictates the way the final product will look like. So the problem resides in the means you utilize and how they interact with you. If they are easy-to-use and manage to fit in your demands, then you will find a helping hand in making your ideas come to life right in front of your eyes. That is what both novices and professional users seek in video-related software.
AVI ReComp is a free piece of software from Prozac designed to provide users with AVI recompression. It also supports subtitle embedding and configuration, video resizing and cropping, audio conversion and batch encoding. As the title states, it works only with AVI video files. The program supports the most popular subtitle formats, from simple SUB, SRT and TXT files to the more advanced ASS and SSA (SubStation Alpha) with editing capabilities.
The AVI ReComp installer packs additional software distributions (VirtualDubMod, XVid, AVI Synth and VobSub) that the application needs in order to re-encode your video files. If you have them installed, they can be unchecked during the installation process, although the developer recommends the use of provided ancillary software. As a matter of fact, the program will not start unless it finds these components installed on your computer and it will return an error message containing information on the missing tools.
The tabbed interface of AVI ReComp excels in simplicity and style. The lack of a menu bar does not interfere with the general experience. On the contrary, it facilitates the interaction and makes everything more intuitive. The main window splits up into three sections – Jobs
control panel, Applications
. The first of them is the place where you will actually work. The Applications section provides information and Status
regarding the adjacent tools.
The first step of the process will require users to select both the Source and Output files locations with the option to Auto-set the output path as well as the desired recompressed AVI file size. If you choose a value that is smaller than half of the source file’s size, the program will ask for your confirmation as the resulted video file will present fairly to utter poor image quality.
tab of the Jobs control panel area will display several useful options like Resolution
, Black Borders
conversion. Users will be able to preview the Cropping
tools as they look for the right selection of video resolution. The settings window for the Borders
will work harmoniously with the next two provided options, creating the required space for both the watermark logo and subtitles.
Subtitle hardcoding will come in very handy for users who own a standalone DVD player without subtitle support. Provided with a SSA or ASS subtitle format, AVI ReComp will allow users to set their position on the screen, the type of font, font size / color, shadow, outline and the emboldening or underlining. The Logo
segment receives a similar approach with Position
, Start time
settings tab of the application will allow the user to adjust the way the current job will be processed. First, you will select the Priority level
, then whether you want to view the background VirtualDubMod and Xvid status operations. You will also be able to disable B-VOPs
(Bidirectional Video Object Plane) and use QPel
encoding (which is not supported by several DVD players), Adaptive Quantization
(to gain a bit of quality in the medium-brightness parts of the picture which are more noticeable for the human eye) and Turbo mode
(for faster, yet less qualitative compression).
Furthermore, you can choose to automatically delete the temporary / source files on job completion and edit AVS scripts. If you find yourself mixing these settings up just press the Program defaults button and go to the next tab – the Queue
. AVI ReComp supports batch encoding
and every change made before clicking on the Add to queue
button will be stored in the current job, giving you the opportunity to add your jobs with different parameters. The program comes with a very useful option in this matter, namely “Each job resets settings”.
Once the list is done, you can rearrange the order of your tasks and set the application to shut down the computer on queue completion. Unfortunately, AVI ReComp does not display a total progress bar and timer. It will only show the remaining time and progress for the current operation, such as video / audio stream demuxing, audio conversion or stream muxing process.
The final product will provide users with the exact and desired outcome without any fuss. The compression speed is fairly good, nothing noticeable here. For testing, a 700 megabytes, one hour AVI video file has been used. It took roughly 11 minutes and 30 seconds for AVI ReComp to re-encode it at half its size. The second recompression lasted 12 minutes and 30 seconds for the same output size, resized video resolution in half and audio conversion (AC3 5.1 audio stream to MP3, which actually took approximately 6 minutes of the entire process).Subtitle embedding
ran for nearly 18 minutes and given the fact that there is no configuration for standard SRT, SUB or TXT files, with no character set selection capability, results will be faulty. This problem will not affect English subtitles or any other ones that do not need a special character set to be properly displayed. These tests have been carried out on a quad-core processor, 8 gigabytes RAM system and the application really put all of the cores to good use during the operations, topping to 85% of CPU load and 120 megabytes of system memory.
In order to set the Language
for AVI ReComp, check for newer versions or integrate it into your Windows installation, you will access the Interface
tab of the Applications segment. Users will find detailed information about the video and audio streams of the loaded AVI file within the Data
area of the program. Besides the time and size of the movie, you will be able to view the MPEG-4 codec, QPel (Quarter pixel), GMC (Global Motion Compensation) and more common details such as Bitrate, Resolution, FPS or Audio Channels.The Good
This AVI re-encoding application manages to deploy a nice set of powerful yet easy-to-use tools wrapped in a simple, nice-looking interface. System resources management is quite good, supporting multi-core processors and thus, decreasing compression times. The queue list is also a great feature, once you get the hang of it.The Bad
When it comes to encoding options and settings, the main disadvantage of this program is the lack of configuration capabilities. One can only choose the output file size, with no real profile selection and customization. Time estimation is the other problem with the software - given a multiple-file queue list, who knows how much time will spend on processing it?The Truth
succeeds in getting the job done. It has a nicely built framework, based on reliable tools. While not worthy of spotlights, the program will transform your AVI re-encoding ideas into newly-created video files according to your specifications. It is reliable while not very fast and provides the required ease of use while not being fully configurable.Here are some snapshots of the application in action