Now that I am sort of teaching, I find myself wanting to reference applications or pointers quite often. Sure, I could read a webpage, but I would much prefer using some type of video source. Having a Blackberry Bold as my mobile phone, I can easily access video material on the go.
The easiest way to reference material would be to head on over to the mobile Youtube and either search away or access my youtube favorites. This is decent for quick searches and general browsing, but the video quality leaves a lot to be desired. I am currently testing out the Blackberry Vision for Youtube application to address this issue. While the video quality looks better than using the Blackberry Browser, this is still not an ideal solution.
For me, the best solution was to convert videos into a portable format and store them on my mobile’s memory card. Having an 8GB memory card will give me ample room for storing videos. For this process I used the Handbrake video transcoder program (available for both Windows and Mac).
Handbrake comes loaded with some built-in presets and I used the iPod-Touch preset as my starting point. I used the following specifications for my transcoding:
- Format: mpeg-4, ff-mpeg, mv4 file
- Resolution: 480 x 320
- Bitrate: 450
- Frames Per Second: 15
- Audio: AAC, 64 kbps
With the settings above, I converted a 1 hour DVD into a 225 MB file! Talk about convenience! In fact, this morning on our way to the cafeteria, I showed my coworker clips from Chen Zhonghua’s Detailed Application DVD on my mobile phone! He was impressed by the quality of the video but even more impressed by the content and how easily Master Chen was able to execute the applications.
I am still playing around with some of the video setting above, but will post more if I find better settings. For instance, my attempts at using h.264 video compression haven’t worked on my Blackberry Bold. Also, I will be adjusting the bitrate and frames per second to find that ‘optimal sweet spot’.