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Review -
Sorenson Squeeze 4 Compression Suite

By the Tech Lab staff, Tech-Edge E-zine
September 28, 2004

Sorenson is a household name, really, although you might not know it directly. Used since nearly the beginning, Sorenson Squeeze has made Apple’s QuickTime a lot of what it has become, the paramount video format whether it is Mac or Windows (we know, Redmond may not agree with that statement).

However, the majority of the video creation elite knows exactly who Sorenson is and a great number of them also swear by it in what they distribute. No matter how incredible your creation is, you just can’t put it on CD, DVD, a web site or stream it, when it’s raw and anything from a few hundred MB or a few dozen plus Gigabyte! You have to compress it and retain the video quality and the same time.

Enter Sorenson’s Squeeze technology to make things easier for both Windows and Mac content developers. Last years Squeeze 3 was an impressivesuite tool for both platforms. It swept a lot of video and content producers into their camp, all with big smiles of contentment. So, just how could Sorenson out-do themselves? Apparently, Sorenson is not content with what they offer in this ever-competitive market and have given birth, after a lot of beta testing, to an all-new Squeeze 4 for both platforms.

   Mac OS X version, nearly identical to its Windows cousin.

If you are a Squeeze 3 user, the first noticeable difference in Squeeze 4 for either platform is the user interface. Squeeze 3 was good, version 4 is great and when we tested both versions on the same Mac or Windows workstations, it appears that Squeeze 4 is appreciably faster too. Importing a selected file or group of files to apply selected filters and selected compression functions is amazingly easy once you know what you are doing with them.

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Squeeze is primarily oriented toward the prosumer to professional user and many of the functions or filters are designed in somewhat cryptic abbreviations. Our “user peer group” review panel of advanced to professional content and web developers had no problem though, understanding what things were. If you are a budding video, animation or Flash producer, take time to READ the Squeeze documentation and you will fly through projects.

Sorenson has delivered on providing you everything you will need to prepare a project for publishing on the Web, Broadcast or Media distribution (CD’s and DVD’s). All the standardized formats, sizes and anticipated bandwidths for the Internet are there.
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" I liked the interface as soon as I saw it. It appeared very intuitive and easy to use ......"
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Our “user peer-group” review panel marveled at the seemingly endless array of features and functions in Squeeze 4 for Windows and Macintosh, ones that they felt topped the list were:

  • Batch processing at job, source, and output levels
  • Support for AVC encoding (H.264)
  • High Definition (HD) encoding (AVC/H.264, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, QuickTime, RealMedia, and Windows Media 9)
  • Filter preview slider
  • Video noise reduction
  • White/black restore
  • Two-Pass Variable Bit Rate (VBR) compression
  • One-Pass Variable Bit Rate (VBR) compression
  • Multi-Bit-Rate file creation for Windows Media and RealMedia
  • High Definition (HD) encoding options
  • Video zoom tool for pixel-perfect cropping
  • Audio import
  • Ability to constrain output file sizes
  • Ability to save audio and video filter settings
  • Integrated links for Flash (SWF) output
  • Player templates for Flash (SWF) output
  • Improved intelligent presets
  •  - and many more.

  
   Windows version Format and Compression Types, or Mac


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