The YouTube presets built into Premiere Pro CS5 were designed with YouTube and do not require any transcoding once they've been uploaded to YouTube. Most video that you send up there gets transcoded by them into their file format. This usually results in pixelated output that is what you're trying to avoid...
Other than that, try to stick to H.264 for encoding whenever possible and higher bit rate. Knowing how your video is going to be presented is really the key.
Basic things to consider are:
- Total available bandwidth
- frame size
- frame rate
- amount of motion/action in the scene or video
In the end, I will say that creating good output is still more art than science as there are a lot of variables. Do some research on the subject and I know that it will result in better video for you.
Hope this helps,
The YT presets work perfectly. No complaints here.
I use Vimeo almost exclusively to host videos (though I also use YouTube some as well, and I've used the Adobe Flash Media server as well). Vimeo has given the following suggested settings for encoding videos to upload at 720p HD to their site. I've found it to give BEAUTIFUL results...
We recommend using the H.264 codec at size 1280×720, bit rate 3000-5000 kbits/sec (optimized for “download”), key frame every 30 frames (frame reordering on), using whatever frame rate you shot in.
For sound, use AAC at 128kbps in stereo.
I use Vimeo almost exclusively to host videos
You know there is a Vimeo preset that again was developed with the help of Vimeo right?
Nope, I hadn't seen that... I'll have to check it out.