7 Replies Latest reply on Mar 5, 2012 8:18 PM by Tacoma78

    Quality degradation when editing a WMV file


      I have a long duration WMV file (more than one hour) that I want to edit, with the goal of creating multiple files that can be uploaded to YouTube. The file is recording of a PowerPoint presentation with voiceover. It was delivered live on Webex (Cisco's online meeting service), recorded using Webex's built-in recording, then converted from their proprietary format (file extension .ARF) to WMV using the converter utility that Webex provides.


      The resulting WMV is quite large (approx 150 MB) and quite sharp/clear to watch/listen when played in the Windows media player.


      As stated above, I want to edit the video into chunks that are 15 minutes or shorter, and post to YouTube.


      I am using Adobe Premiere Elements v. 8.


      So, I do my editing, resulting in content that is less than 15 minutes. I go to the Share tab, click on Personal Computer as the type of share, and choose Windows Media. The file renders. What results is a new WMV that, when played in the Windows media player, has just awful visual quality - the smaller text in the PowerPoint cannot even be read, whereas it was quite easy to read in the original WMV recording.


      Any ideas how I can get output that is as good as my original recording?


      Is it really necessary to "re-render" the project, since I am going from WMV to WMV? Can't I just snip/delete to get the content that I want to keep, without rendering?

        • 1. Re: Quality degradation when editing a WMV file
          the_wine_snob Level 9

          You have several things working against you. First the output from PowerPoint is barely adequate to begin with. Most folk, who are concerned with quality, choose to reproduce the PowerPoint "slides" in Photoshop, or Illustrator. The next best workflow, if a newer version of PowerPoint is used, is to Export from PowerPoint, as TIFF Images, and then create a SlideShow in Premier.


          I do not know about the Webex CODEC, and whether it compresses, or not, but converting to WMV WILL be heavily-compressed. It is also not an easy format/CODEC to edit, and is a major resource hog. Then, when edited, if you Export/Share to WMV, you will be applying heavy-compression again. It's like a FAX of a FAX of a FAX - looks very bad.


          Now, for YouTube Presets, this FAQ Entry might be useful.


          Were it me, I would Export from PowerPoint as TIFF Images, and then create the SlideShow from those.


          Good luck,



          • 2. Re: Quality degradation when editing a WMV file
            Tacoma78 Level 1





            I took your tip below and decided to create my video of the PPT presentation by exporting TIFFs from PPT and using these to create a slide show in Premier. I found instructions on-line re. how to change registry settings so that PPT slides are exported as high res. (300 dpi) TIFs; the resulting files (my slides) are tack sharp when viewed in PhotoShop.




            I then went into Premiere Elements Organizer, imported these slides, then used Create > Slideshow to launch the Slideshow Editor with these slides as content. Easy enough. To create the slideshow, there appeared to be only two output formats: PDF and WMV. I chose WMV, and saved the slideshow. The resulting WMV is pretty low-res. in appearance.




            I’m wondering if I misunderstood – when you suggested to create a SlideShow, were you referring to using the SlideShow Editor – or were you suggesting instead that I should create a Premiere Elements project, import my slides into the SceneLine, and output the video from there? I did experiment w/ the latter approach (creating a project and placing my TIFFs in the SceneLine) and from that I was able to get a very clear video in QuickTime format.




            I’m wondering – did I miss some feature of the SlideShow editor that would allow me to export in QuickTime or otherwise fine-tune the quality?




            If I have to use the other approach – forgoing the SlideShow editor and instead placing the slides in the Sceneline and exporting as Quicktime – is there a way to add my soundtrack while using SceneLine, or to add audio will I need to use TimeLine?





            • 3. Re: Quality degradation when editing a WMV file
              the_wine_snob Level 9

              If you are using the PSE Organizer, you should have the option to Send to PrElements. That precludes having to Export/Transcode to any Video format. Then, within PrE, you can choose Break Apart, and can edit the elements.


              For SlideShows, one should make sure to Scale any Still Images to match the desired output. This Scaling will be done on the pixel x pixel dimensions, as DPI/PPI have no real meaning in Video, but only in printing, or computer display.


              Now, there is one other consideration, and that would be if there IS Video to be added to the Project's Timeline. THEN, one would choose a PrE Project, that matches the properties of THAT Video, and then would Scale the Stills to match the Frame Size of that Project. Otherwise, and if ONLY Still Images will be used, one can determine the delivery specs., and then create a Project to match, then Scale the Still Images to that.


              This ARTICLE goes into more detail on Scaling Still Images for Video. Now, PrE CAN Scale Still Images, BUT (and that is a very big "BUT") the Scaling algorithms in PSE, or PS, will be much better, and the quality will be higher.


              Good luck,



              • 4. Re: Quality degradation when editing a WMV file
                Tacoma78 Level 1

                I am still struggling to get a slide show of decent clarity. Am looking at the article you mentioned - http://forums.adobe.com/thread/450798?tstart=0 – but it raises a number of questions for me.


                I’m working on Windows Vista with Adobe Premiere Elements v. 10 (I have upgraded). I also have Adobe Photoshop CS3.


                You write “This workflow is for NTSC 4:3 720x480 with a PAR (Pixel Aspect Ratio) of 0.9. If your Project’s Presets are different, use those specs to resize to.


                That’s a good place to start. The slides I am working with are TIF images extracted from PowerPoint and saved at 300 DPI. Their default size is 3070 x 2302, but I can open them in Photoshop and resize.


                My goal is to create a slide show for uploading to YouTube. I have already extracted the audio as an AAC file and will add that in.


                Given my goal and the materials I am starting with, what are the ideal pre-sets to choose when I begin the project?


                Or, how do I choose the Project Presets that you use? The default project settings (shown in the dialogue box where I give my project a name and storage location) appear to be NTSC-AVCHD-AVCHD LITE 720p24. If I click the “Change settings” button I am shown a number of choices (for example, the sub-categories within NTSC are AVCHD, DSLR, DV, FLIP, Hard disk flash memory camcorders, and HDV. Which matches the “NTSC 4:3 720x480 with a PAR (Pixel Aspect Ratio) of 0.9” that you use?


                4:3 refers to the image’s aspect ratio, correct? I did not look at every Project Preset that is offered, but in the ones I did look at, I did not see a 4:3 aspect ratio specified…


                Can you clarify?

                • 5. Re: Quality degradation when editing a WMV file
                  nealeh Level 5

                  This is the one you want:



                  While at first site it may not look like 4:3 it is actually only 640 x 480 real pixels (which is 4:3).


                  Accept it as fact. It's the kind of detail always makes my head spin but the experts on this forum explain it much better than I. In my case it's even more confusing because I'm in PAL land where the headline size is 720x576 but it's still only 640*480 real pixels.





                  Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children

                  • 6. Re: Quality degradation when editing a WMV file
                    the_wine_snob Level 9

                    First, the DPI/PPI of an Image will play no role in Video. They are for printing and for display in an Image viewer on a computer.


                    At least you have a later version of PowerPoint, and the TIFF format is best, but still not ideal, as PowerPoint is designed for projection display, and its quality is not the best to start.


                    Scaling those TIFF's in PS, to the Frame Size of the Project is about as good, as it gets.


                    Many uers have found that reconstructing the PowerPoint Slides in PS, or AI, yields much greater quality, but the recently added TIFF Export, from PowerPoint does seem to be a big step forward.


                    Good luck,



                    • 7. Re: Quality degradation when editing a WMV file
                      Tacoma78 Level 1
                      1. Thanks. I started a new project using the pre-set you recommend:  DV - Standard 48kHz. I added my TIF slides, and then chose Quicktime as my preferred output.


                      The result is much better than what I’d gotten before. The slides as shown in the video are not crystal clear, but they’re acceptable for my purposes (posting a business presentation to YouTube).


                      I also tried a different output format, MPEG. The result was not nearly as good. The images are very blurry.


                      I notice that in the Share tab in both the Quicktime and MPEG outputs, the frame size is described as 720 x 480. In my project, I used TIF images that are 1000 pixels wide. Am I likely to get a better result (in either output format) if I reduce the size of the TIF images to 720 pixels?


                      I notice that when outputting as Quicktime, in the Share tab, Premiere Elements offers “NTSC DV” as a pre-set, which seems to correspond to the project pre-set (“DV - Standard 48kHz”); whereas for the MPEG output, there was nothing that seemed to directly echo the project pre-set, so I chose the MPEG Share tab’s default pre-set, NTSC DVD Standard.


                      Does the pre-set chosen  on the Share tab for a given output format, need to match the pre-set selected at the beginning of the project? Is there a better choice than NTSC DVD Standard for outputting this project to MPEG?