12 Replies Latest reply on Aug 22, 2018 3:47 PM by Jim_Simon

    MP4 vs MOV

    Jim_Palik Level 1

      I am an experienced professional still photographer but "really" new to movie making. I will be doing drone based architectural work and aerial in inspection movies. Can anyone tell me the advantages and disadvantages to MP4 vs MOV. I am shooting with a Sony a7 III and a phantom 4 pro drone. I am an experienced Lightroom and photoshop user, and a member of creative cloud. I just started learning Premiere.

       

      I am a Windows user so leaning toward MP4. I also noticed that the Premiere examples use MP4. However, I would like a more informed reason for choosing one over the other.

       

      Thank you in advance. Adobe forums have always been a god-send.

       

      Jim

        • 1. Re: MP4 vs MOV
          Ann Bens Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Both have the H.264 codec. Both are suited to be edited by Premiere.

          Dont think one is better then the other.

          • 2. Re: MP4 vs MOV
            byroncortezh Adobe Community Professional

            Actually it depends on where your project is directed, that is, if you want to upload it to YouTube, Vimeo or some social network, you will have better .MP4 with H.264 codec due to its high quality and its small size. disk. But, if your video is intended for broadcast or for reproduction where what you need is the best possible quality then it suits you a .MOV with a DNxHD codec if your video is high definition or DNxHR if your video is 4K, for example. I could compare a .MP4 video with a .JPEG picture, while a .MOV video with a picture .TIFF, something like that would be my comparison with the qualities of each one.

             

            In summary, an .MP4 is a compressed video that should be a final video and ready for distribution, as a .MOV (with codecs such as DNxHD, DNxHR, among others, such as Apple ProRes, etc.) is a video with little compression that is of a much better quality and that could support the odd transcoding in case you need to modify something of the final video.

             

            I hope this information will help you to decide better.

             

            Regards!

            • 3. Re: MP4 vs MOV
              Jim_Simon Level 9

              QuickTime often has issue.

               

              MP4 never does.

              • 4. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                Jim_Palik Level 1

                Thank you all for your response, especially from Byron. I have a lot of studying to do. I do not understand codecs yer but your answers give me a great pointer. Thank you Byron for the JPEG TIFF comparison, This I understand.

                 

                Is there a difference in the file size of an .MP4 vs a .MOV?

                Is there any difference in editing an .MP4 vs a .MPV?

                 

                Thank you all again. Each of your answers provide a different insight.

                 

                Jim

                • 5. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                  byroncortezh Adobe Community Professional

                  You're welcome Jim Palik. And of course if there is a difference in disk size between the .MP4 and the .MOV due to the compression of each one. The .MOV with DNxHD / HR codec, Apple ProRes, among others, weighs more because it is less compressed and uses more datarate than the .MP4 with H.264 codec.

                   

                  So, if you need the best possible quality without skimping on disk space, use the .MOV. But, if you need compatibility with all the existing devices and for having, if you need to upload your video to a Website, or send it by mail, or if you only need acceptable quality and it is not so heavy when playing, in that case use .MP4.

                   

                  Regards!

                  • 6. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                    Jim_Simon Level 9

                    Is there a difference in the file size of an .MP4 vs a .MOV?

                     

                    File size is dependent on bitrate and duration.  The specific container won't have any direct impact.

                    1 person found this helpful
                    • 7. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                      byroncortezh Adobe Community Professional

                      The container does not, but the codec does. Some codecs have the bitrate not modifiable while others are modifiable as the H.264, but if you raise the bitrate too much, it does not make sense to use it. In addition, each codec is used depending on where the video is directed, or where it will be played, or in what it will be used. That is why my example with specific codecs so that he has a clear and not confused idea.

                      • 8. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                        Jim_Simon Level 9

                        The container does not, but the codec does.

                         

                        Not really.  Any two codecs at the same bitrate will produce the same size file (assuming the same duration program).

                         

                        The quality may vary with the codec, but not the file size.

                         

                        Additionally, your attempt at elucidation doesn't really apply in this case.  The OP is asking only about which format he should choose on his camera, both of which will use the H.264 codec.

                        • 9. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                          byroncortezh Adobe Community Professional

                          You are forgetting the Color Depth, Supsampling, among other things that differentiate each codec but for the moment it is not necessary to mention so as not to confuse the user.

                           

                          If the user does not know which video codec to use, I must explain it to him, otherwise it is the same to say that he uses a container or another one. Himself will have the opportunity to experience when he has more journey with video work, this is how we all started in this.

                           

                          And you can not explain what a container is if you do not explain what it contains. It is not the same as a bottle (container) contains water (codec) that the same bottle contains soda (another codec), depending on the liquid you drink will be the quality of your health, the same applies to video, its real quality depends on the codec.

                           

                          Regards!

                          • 10. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                            Stan Jones Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                            Jim_Palik  wrote

                             

                            ... I am shooting with a Sony a7 III and a phantom 4 pro drone.

                             

                            I am a Windows user so leaning toward MP4. …

                            I am a little confused by the direction of the thread. I think you are asking about whether to use .mov or .mp4 acquisition for shooting; not delivery or other considerations. Yes, those are important, but you want the best acquisition you can get. I start with the expectation that I will max datarate, and try to configure my equipment/datacard size and speed etc. to accommodate.

                             

                            The Phantom appears to only allow codecs h.264 or h.265 in mov or mp4; no dnxhd etc. Look in detail at your options.

                             

                            Apple's changes in quicktime support alone is enough for me (as a PC user) to stick with mp4.

                             

                            The other codecs and options are very relevant in the editing and delivery stages.

                             

                            Edit: posted before I saw the last 2 posts.

                            • 11. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                              Ann Bens Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                              Its confusing: the original question how I understood was about two different wrappers/containers on import.

                              The Sony and the drone.

                              • 12. Re: MP4 vs MOV
                                Jim_Simon Level 9

                                If the user does not know which video codec to use

                                 

                                The OP wasn't inquiring about codecs, only containers, which in his case will use the same codec for both containers - H.264.