After cropping my videos to a 16:9 format using the previously mentioned How to crop a 4:3 video to 16:9 with Windows Movie Maker tutorial, I was left with a puzzling problem. Since Youtube disregards pixel aspect ratio (PAR), and widescreen DVD resolution files do no have square pixels, the only option was to encode the movies in HD 720p. Now this is great if you are dealing with HD video, but then why did you want to crop it in the first place. It is a waste of file space and bandwidth to use an HD output format on an SD video. So, I set out to create some custom output profiles for Windows Movie Maker.
The hard way:
To truly create custom profiles, you must download the full Windows Media Encoder software [link]. This includes a tool for creating custom profiles, called Windows Media Profile Editor. With this tool, you can create many different output profiles, several of which will not even be compatible with Movie Maker. After creating the profile, you save it as a “prx” file. This file is actually a simple xml file, that Movie Maker uses to create custom profiles. So to make things easier for you, I will just supply you with two simple prx files.
The easy way:
Attached to this post (at the bottom) are two prx files. One of the files
outputs widescreen video for youtube, with normal quality settings. The
second file will output the video with sufficient quality, so that youtube will
recognize it as a high quality video, and give you the ‘view in high quality’
option. If you open the files in a text editor like notepad, you can see
exactly how the files work. You can also edit the files if you so choose.
So, here is a step by step to get this to work:
- Download the two files attached to this post, and save
them in your ‘Documents’ folder.
- In explorer, navigate to:”C:\Program Files\Movie Maker\Shared\ “Create a folder called “Profiles” if it does not
exit. Go ahead and open this folder.
- Drag the two prx files into this folder, and accept all
of Vista’s fussiness about doing so.
That’s it! Next time you are publishing a movie with movie with Movie Maker, when you get to the settings screen, choose ‘More settings’ and you will see
two new profiles: “Youtube Widescreen High Quality” and “Youtube Widescreen”
Now you are all ready to become a YouTube star!