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Tags: What is AMV, AMV Convert Tool Software, AMV, AMV Software Abilities, AMV Voice Recording
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AMV File Format for MP4 Media Players

What is AMV?

AMV is a Video File Format, produced by MTV for use in Chinese MP3/MP4/MTV Players; classified as S1 MP3 Players.

A format is basically the method or way a file is stored on a computer.

Examples of other video formats are DVD, SVCD and VCD.

AMV Convert Tool Software

The AMV Convert Tool will convert video files into the MP4 Players native file format, i.e. AMV file format. While marketing and MTV are pushing AMV primarily as a music video file format, this utility will happily convert anything from feature movies to holiday home clips into AMV-compliant files. No fiddling with screen sizes or bit rates is required: put the file in at one end, and get an AMV out at the other. It’s video conversion made easy, and painless.

Technical Stuff

AMV’s Video compression ratio is low, compared with other formats, though as the files are of low resolution and frame rate, file sizes are small compared to DVD/VCD/etc. (in a bytes-per-minute sense). Encoding and decoding are less processor-intensive than other contemporary formats (i.e. faster to encode on, say, desktop computer, and less hard on the batteries of the portable device), as in fact very little "encoding" is actually done.

For example (using typical values/approximations):
(note: AMV calculations based on 30 minutes at 128 x 96 pixels, 12 frames/second, 22050 samples/sec mono sound : 80 MBytes (approx) The audio is 22050 samples/sec, mono, MP3(?) - a safe guess would be a maximum of 10MB being audio, yielding 70 MBytes for video, or approximately 40,000 bytes per second.)

File/ Approx. data rate/ Resolution (pixels) /Frame rate Pixels per second/ Pixels per byte

AMV /40,000 bytes/sec /128 x 96 = 12,288/ 12 fps /147,456 ~3.5

DVD (MPEG2-PAL) > 1,000,000 bytes/sec /704 x 576 = ~400,000/ 25 fps ~10,000,000 ~10

How Long does it take?

To sum it up, you could take a 2hr Divx/MP4 Video and covert the entire thing to AMV and then watch it on your MP4 Player.

A 700mb divx/mp4 movie (.avi format) took approximately 5-minustes to complete converting to AMV. It then took about 20sec to copy the file from the PC to the MP4 player.

A Music video that was 4-minutes long (.avi format) took under 30sec.

The above examples are approximates and will vary based on the file format the original video is in.

AMV Software Abilities

Software available  currently give screen sizes of 94x64, 128x96 and 128x128, typically set to frame rates of 8, 12 and 16 frames per second (described as "low","medium" and "high"), which fits reasonably well on 1.2 to 1.5+ inch screens. By editing configuration files the range of frame rates handled by the encoder can be expanded to 8-24 (in 1fps increments), though using alternate framerates may cause problems if the player is not designed for those alternates.

There is also currently available a utility that will allow conversion between various other formats to AMV with screen settings, picture and audio quality. Other selections include the ability to 'zoom', (MODE in the programmers design terms). Presently, there does not seem to be a utility that will convert AMV to any other format.

A 45-minute video file will take just under 50 minutes to convert on an older Celeron processor, and considerably less on faster CPUs, for a final AMV file of just under 143MBs.

The AMV Player plays AMV files on any Windows PC. It’s functional and fast, though it lacks any kind of video scaling filtering, which means that the native 96*52 pixels look pretty ugly when enlarged beyond their 100% size, calibrated for the MP3 400’s OLED screen.

Voice Recording

Voice recording conversion is carried out by the Sound Convert Tool, that will turn any recording made with the unit into a standard (or compressed) WAV file, for playback on any other PC or portable device. 

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