Pixelization and Artifacts on YouTube Videos – Do Slow Frame Rates Fix the Problem?

This s a crazy little experiment. I usually shoot video at 24, 30, 48 or 60 frames per second – but if you are driving through a complex environment with lots of leaves and limbs, etc. then YouTube compresses the video so much everything looks pixelated and blocky. It happens because YouTube’s video compression is trying to pack lots of data into small – fast downloading packets for quick on-line delivery. So if you have lots of changing scenery with varied color and texture, then the sparse data stream is divided among the 24, 30 or other frames per second – to the great detriment of quality and detail on the viewer’s end.

So I thought, why not shoot with my GoPro Hero3+ in photo sequence mode at 1 photo every .5 seconds. Just slow the frame rate down to a ridiculously low level. I then brought the photos into a 12 frame per second sequence in Adobe Premiere Pro CC and assigned each photo to a length of 6 frames (1/2 second). I chose 12 frames per second because I KNEW YouTube would accept that low a frame rate – maybe I could go even lower?

I exported the photos (which were 4000 X 3000 pixels) as 1080p 12 frame per second video, and uploaded to Youtube. So here are the results. My goal was to show you a nice ride in Little Switzerland, NC and the Blue Ridge Parkway with minimal pixelization and compression artifacts. How did I do? Is it unsatisfying to watch video that equates to 2 frames per second? Give me some feedback.

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