Digital Video and MPEG Encoding

10 Day Course
Hands On
Code PWL398

Book Now - 1 Delivery Method Available:

Classroom Virtual Classroom Private Group - Virtual Self-Paced Online


This is a special course developed to meet the requirements of Panasonic Aviation who receive, process, and package Movies, Digital Video and Audio material for delivery as in-flight entertainment on commercial aircraft. The material is delivered electronically as MPEG-2 transport streams with video processed to match H.264 (MPEG-4 part 10) and audio using mp3 (MPEG level 3) encoding. It must be processed to match a tightly drawn constant bit-rate specification that can be played by the player software within a range of aircraft.

The source media may not always arrive in a suitable format immediately so must be processed appropriately. During this process flaws in the original content, incorrect encoding, packaging or timing may be discovered. These shortcomings must be identified, understood, reprocessed and corrected before the required material can be output in the form demanded by the specification.

This course provides the detailed understanding of the standards, formats and encoding details for the full range of video and audio formats used for original source material. The course will use extensive hands-on exercises to build skills and confidence in the understanding of the principles and practice involved.
The training will be delivered on-site in two parts each of 5 days. The first will concentrate upon the basic understanding of video and audio formats used in different source locations, the basics of MPEG-1 (H.261), MPEG-2 (H.262), MPEG-4 part 10 (H.264) encoding, MPEG-2 transports streams matching H.222, and MPEG-2 program streams.

The second part will concentrate upon the details of the encoding for H.264 for HD delivery and 4K Video, H.265. It will identify the detailed ways that H.264 enhances H.262, image processes such as de-blocking filters, analyzing transport streams in details, troubleshooting flaws and errors in streams and deploying processes to fix them.

The courses will be run on-site using Windows 7 Laptop platforms supplied by the customer. The appropriate course materials and specialist Opens-source and free software will be provided electronically to each student on memory sticks.


​Part 1 - 5 days

  • Identify the key video formats used in the Digital Video, Movie and TV industries
  • Describe the standards used by major industry groups
  • Analyze the key transport stream formats used for broadcast packaged delivery
  • Appreciate the quality impact of stream speed on H.261, H.262 and H.264 encoding
  • Converting variable bit rate encoded file to fixed bit rate encoding
  • Describe in detail how H.261 and H.262 Encoding Functions
  • Compare Video Formats, Profiles, Levels and Tiers
  • Analyze Transport stream formats to discover SI and PSI information
  • Determine the characteristics of content delivered as H.222 transport streams
  • Extract and package Video, Audio and Subtitles

​Part 2 - 5 days

  • Describe in detail the advanced functions of H.264 Encoding
  • Examine the Network Abstraction Layer packets of H.264 & H.265 streams
  • Analyzing NAL Streams
  • Identify the impact of Block size and deblocking filters
  • Identifying and fixing errors in transport streams
  • Processing and correcting Audio quality and loudness
  • Filtering, branding and watermarking video
  • Advertising and ad-insertion
  • Adding and editing ID3v2 frames


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Part 1 - Fundamentals of Digital Video and Media Encoding

Evolution of Digital Video (4 topics)

  • Video and Television
  • Evolution of NTSC and PAL Formats
  • Aspect ratios and resolutions
  • Colour Formats
  • Frame rates
  • PAL (24 or 23.976 frames/s) vs. NTSC (29.970 frames/s)
  • Impact of using higher and lower frame rates
  • Hands-on Exercise examining frame formats and frame rates

Digital Sampling (3 topics)

  • Fundamentals of Digital Sampling
  • Digital Sampling Rates and Nyquist Rates
  • 8 bit Sampling (4:4:4, 4:2:2, 4:2:0)
  • MPEG standards used across audio/video compression and transmission.
  • Video colour standards
  • Hands-on Exercise on

Fundamentals of H.261 and H.262 (3 topics)

  • MPEG slices and blocks
  • Macroblocks
  • Discrete Cosine Transforms
  • I Pictures, and P Pictures
  • Hands-on Exercise experimenting with MPEG-2 Blocks

Encoding and Decoding Profiles (2 topics)

  • Profiles Levels & Tiers
  • Specifically Main level (SD) High Level (HD)
  • Hands-on Exercise experimenting with Profiles and Levels

MPEG 4 video compression breakdown (3 topics)

  • Advanced Video Coding (MPEG-4, Part 10, also called H.264)
  • Video encoding and multiplexing
  • Fundamentals of H.264
  • Transcoding from MPEG-2 (H.262) to H.264
  • Hands-on Exercise experimenting with Transcoding to H.264

Timing and synchronisation (4 topics)

  • Synchronisation of video and audio
  • Transport stream PCR
  • File formats
  • MP4, MKV, NAL Streams
  • Timing in MP4
  • Hands-on Exercise Analysing MP4 files and Transport streams for timing
  • Hands-on Exercise Transcoding H.264 video to and from different containers

GoP (Groups of Picture) settings (2 topics)

  • Reference frames - I frames , P frames, B frames
  • IDR - Instantaneous Decoder Refresh
  • Key Frames
  • Hands-on Exercise Experimenting with different GoP sizes, P-Frames and B-Frames

Decomposing Pictures (3 topics)

  • The differences between blocks, macroblocks, slices and tiles
  • Application in MPEG-2. H.264 and H.265
  • Intercoding vs Intra coding
  • Resolutions - Half D1, Full D1 and CIF
  • Hands-on Exercise displaying Blocks

Transport Streams in Detail (3 topics)

  • H.222 Transport Streams
  • MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 - Transport streams
  • Packetized elementary streams and multiplexing
  • Transport stream vs. Program Stream
  • Other elementary stream types
  • Hands-on Exercise using Program Streams and Transport Streams

Details of Header Fields in Transport Stream and Elementary Streams (5 topics)

  • Transport stream packets
  • Packet headers
  • Sync Byte
  • PES and PIDs
  • PCR
  • PAT, PMT and other Program Service Information
  • Hands-on Exercise Analysing Transport streams to extract PSI information
  • Demultiplexing Streams
  • Embedding subtitles / Closed Captions
  • Hands-on exercise to extract one program from a Mux

Program Guides (2 topics)

  • Electronic Program Guide (EPG)
  • Program guides from external sources
  • Hands-on Exercise examining EPG information

Audio Fundamentals (4 topics)

  • Audio Sampling standards
  • PCM
  • Lossy digital audio compression
  • Bit Rates and examples perceived audio quality
  • MP3 Mpeg Audio Level 3
  • Other audio formats: WAV, WMA, Vorbis
  • Hands-on Exercise transcoding audio files

MPEG Transport streams and Audio Elementary Streams (2 topics)

  • Layer 1, Layer 2 and Layer 3 audio - commonalities and differences
  • Joint stereo, Stereo, Mono and Dual mode encoding
  • Encoding files in Windows PCM format
  • Hands-on Exercise experimenting with different audio encoding

Audio Timing and Lip-sync (5 topics)

  • Relationship between Video & Audio encoding
  • How different settings can impact the output
  • Video & Audio multiplexing and de-multiplexing
  • How synchronisation is achieved or lost
  • Video & Audio timing and synchronization
  • Audio Presentation Time Stamp
  • MP3 (MPEG 1 Layer 3) and AAC (Advanced audio Coding)
  • Audio Buffers
  • Lip Synchronization
  • Hands-on Exercise experimenting with Lip Synchronisation

Audio Volume and Loudness Correction (2 topics)

  • Details of how db levels used during encoding affect the loudness of the audio
  • Loudness corrections - increase / decrease audio db levels
  • Noise reduction
  • Hands-on Exercise processing audio to impact Noise and Loudness

Impact of Video Conversion Parameters: Rates and Resolutions (3 topics)

  • Variable bit rate and Constant bit rate quality compared
  • Different ways constant rate can be achieved
  • Resolution - Full D1, Half D1 or CIF
  • Converting Resolutions
  • Hands-on Exercise Converting Rates and Resolutions

Impact of Video Conversion Parameters: GoPs and Temporal Compression (3 topics)

  • Different types of GoP
  • Closed/Open GoP and GoP size
  • IDR frequency and Key Frames
  • Use of B Frame and impact on profiles
  • Setting Referenced or no referenced B Frames
  • Hands-on Exercise experimenting with GoP and Reference Key Frames

Prediction & Scanning Modes and their impact (2 topics)

  • Encoding with and without weight prediction
  • Setting frame rate and progressive scan
  • Setting encoding bit rate
  • Hands-on Exercise Experimenting with Prediction modes

Putting it All Together (2 topics)

  • Aspect Ratio and Frame Rate conversion
  • Converting variable bit rate encoded file to fixed bit rate encoding
  • Hands-on Exercise building finished encodings

Evaluation and Review

Part 2 - Troubleshooting and Processing HD and 4k Media for H.264 Delivery

Measures of Quality (4 topics)

  • Identifying elements that impact quality
  • Perceived video quality
  • Y-PSNR
  • Motion Blur
  • Blocking
  • H.264 Weighted prediction
  • Hands-on Exercise Experimenting with Weighted Prediction

Parameter Sets (3 topics)

  • H.264 Parameter Sets - SPS and PPS
  • Full MPEG Buffer Modelling
  • Buffer overflow and VBV buffers
  • Presentation Time Stamp
  • Decode Time Stamp
  • Hands-on Analysis of H.264 NAL Streams

NAL Structures (4 topics)

  • NAL Unit Types
  • H.264 & H.265 NAL Units
  • CAVLC (Content Aware Variable Length Coding)
  • CABAC (Context-based Adaptive Binary Arithmetic Coding)
  • Changing encoding profile parameters
  • CABAC Main Profile
  • Hands-on Exercise Examining the Impact of CABAC Coding

Scans, Blocks and Deblocking Filters (3 topics)

  • Metadata in transport stream (ex. Embedded channel number, name etc)
  • Progressive scan (compared to interlaced video)
  • Macro block and Variable slice size
  • Deblocking, Loop and other filters
  • Hands-on Exercise experimenting with Deblocking Filers

Specifics for HD Encoding (4 topics)

  • Comparison of SD and HD specs
  • Impact of increasing screen resolution
  • Shooting high motion content such as sport
  • Impact of frame rate on quality
  • High level profiles
  • 10 bit and 12 bit colour
  • Stereo content
  • Hands-on Exercise experimenting with HD quality

Slices and Sampling (2 topics)

  • Setting sampling frequency
  • Setting number of slices
  • Setting filters (deblocking)
  • Hands-on Exercise Setting different values for key HD quality parameters

Other Video Standards and comparison with MPEG-4 Part 10 (4 topics)

  • VC1 and WMV
  • VP8, VP9 and WEBM
  • Redundant Slice and Switching Slice (SI & SP)
  • Variable block size motion compensation
  • Anti-aliasing sub-pixel interpolation
  • H.265 for 4K Video
  • Comparisons with H.264
  • Hands-on Exercise Encoding 4K in H.264 and H.265

Testing/viewing the file frame by frame and Transport Stream Analysis (2 topics)

  • Analysing Transport streams using Transport stream analyzers
  • Extracting video from transport streams as NAL Unit streams
  • Analyzing NAL unit Streams
  • Hands-on Exercise understanding NAL Units

Transport Stream Modification (3 topics)

  • Analyze and update Transport Stream data/header
  • Stream Errors
  • Continuity checks
  • Sync Errors
  • Fixing sync byte errors
  • Hands-on Exercise fixing Sync and block errors

Clock References in Transport Streams (3 topics)

  • How clocks work
  • Elementary Stream Clocks
  • PCR inaccuracy
  • Jitter
  • Fixing Errors where possible

Impact of Rate Changes (2 topics)

  • Increasing / decreasing sampling rate and bit rate
  • Analyzing buffer and bit rates for specific PIDs
  • Hands-on Exercise Experimenting with Sample Rate changes

Advertising, Motion Compensation and Content Protection (6 topics)

  • Fundamentals of Advertising
  • Advertising Types
  • Graphics
  • Branding
  • Dynamic Advert insertion
  • Targeted Advertising
  • SCTE-35 Digital Program Insertion Cueing Messages
  • Adding Descriptions to Streams
  • Adding and editing ID3v2 frames
  • Program and System Information Protocol (PSIP)
  • Metadata - ID3v2 Frames
  • Hands-on Exercise Adding ID3v2

Motion Compensation (3 topics)

  • Motion Vectors in MPEG-2
  • Motion Vectors in H.264
  • Removing Aliasing using fractional pixel motion
  • Interpolation
  • Hands-on Exercise Analysing Motion Vectors

Content Protection: Watermarking (3 topics)

  • Watermarking
  • Visible and invisible watermarks
  • Adding channel branding logos to channels
  • Adding / Removing watermark
  • Hands-on Exercise Experimenting with watermarking

Content Protection (3 topics)

  • Content Protection using Conditional Access
  • Common Scrambling Algorithm
  • Digital Rights Management
  • AES
  • CENC
  • Hands-on Exercise analysing Protected Streams

Putting it All Together (3 topics)

  • Analyzing streams to verify Encoding
  • Verifying audio and video sampling rates
  • Encoding files in Windows PCM format
  • Recognizing the file formats and specifications
  • Hands-on Exercise recognizing mystery streams

Recoding Unknown Streams (2 topics)

  • Re-encoding/Corrections by changing select encoding parameters of a received file
  • Audio/Video buffer overflow and underflow analysis
  • Hands-on Exercise Recoding Mystery Streams

Jitter (2 topics)

  • Analyzing PCR Jitter
  • Fixing Jitter and Sync problems as far as possible
  • Hands-on Exercise Fixing Faulty Streams

Documenting and Future Planning (2 topics)

  • Tying up the loose ends
  • Documenting the encoding
  • Future evolution to 4K H.265
  • Adaptive streaming and Wireless distribution

Evaluation and Review

What Our Customers Say

The instructors knowledge is fantastically broad and deep!”

Vice President, ABS-CBN

An excellent course, one of the best I have attended for IP training, covering a very wide range of topics.”

MCR Manager, Sky TV New Zealand

Good course, well presented. Good content and mix of theory and practical alike.”

Software Engineer, Commscope

Very good overview of technologies new and old.”

Broadcast Engineer, Formula 1

Very good background to help our development away from Broadcast TV.”

Account Manager, Thomson

Instructor knowledge and experience was excellent.”

Solutions Engineer, Akamai

Good level of detail and industry examples of the technology and its usage. Trainer extremely knowledgeable with a great deal of experience in the field.”

Software Manager, Panasonic

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