Tom's Hardware Guide Video: FAQ

As you’ve seen in the past couple weeks, TG Daily has started producing video articles. The videos have been downloaded thousands of times and we have received emails asking us how we made the videos and what player is required to view the videos. Here is a handy FAQ list to help out anyone who is having trouble.

How can I play the videos ?

For the H.264 videos, you will obviously need a player that can decode the H.264 codec. The two best players are Quicktime 7 and VLC. Both are available as a free download. WMV files can be played back with Windows Media Player.

What is the difference between the low and high resolution videos ?

High-resolution videos are in 720 by 480 pixels resolution. H.264 compression is used at 1 megabit/sec bitrate. The low resolution videos are 320 X 240 pixels resolution and use WMV 512 kilobits/sec as the codec.

Don’t let the term "low resolution" fool you. Many people have commented that the quality of our low res videos look pretty good. Some people are happy with just 320 X 240 video.

How much processing/graphics power do I need to play back the high-resolution videos ?

It depends. H.264 is very computationally expensive to decode and your CPU will probably take a big hit. Some graphics cards can (or claim to) accelerate the decoding which lightens the load on your processor.

If you can’t play back the high-resolution videos, we suggest downloading the low-resolution WMV videos.

What camcorder are you guys using ?

We are using the Panasonic AGDVX-100B.

How are you editing/rendering the videos ?

Sony Vegas 6.0d is used for editing and rendering of the videos.

Why are the files zipped ?

Currently the files are zipped to prevent streaming and not for size savings. The videos are already compressed and generally cannot be further compressed with ZIP. We will be moving to streaming video in the future.

Do you have a full-time cameraman ?


What events do you cover ?

Pretty much anything technology related. We will cover major conventions just like we did at E3. However for logistical reasons, we will mainly cover events in Southern California.

If I have an interesting event, can you guys cover it ?

Depends on the event, but you can always email us the event details and we’ll take a look at it. If the event has an associated webpage please include a link. We won’t be able to cover everything due to scheduling conflicts.

I was featured in one of your videos, can I get a high-resolution copy or a DVD ?

The H.264 video is probably the highest practical video you can get. It would be too labour intensive to re-render a higher bitrate video from the source footage. The same applies to making a DVD.

I think I was in one of your videos, where can I find it ?

In the next few weeks we will have a video index that will list every TG Daily Video. Until then, just shoot us an email and we’ll send you the link.

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