Windows Media Video (WMV)


Windows Media Video is one of the video compression format developed by Microsoft, to support numerous proprietary codecs and internet streaming applications. It was originally developed to compete RealVideo and other video formats. In the WMV family, Windows Media video is one of the most familiar video formats and is often referred to as Microsoft Windows Media Video codec. MPEG-4 AVC, RealVideo, AVS and MPEG-4 ASP are the in the lane of competition to WMV. In 1999, the first version of the codec WMV 7 was built upon the implementation of MPEG-4 part 2.

However, Windows Media Version 9 was introduced with various important features including non-square pixel, interfaced video and frame interpolation. Moreover, it also introduced a new profile titled Windows Media Video 9 professional can activate automatically whenever the video resolution exceeds 300,000 pixels and the bit rate 1000 k bit/s.

Container Format

A Windows Media Video files is encapsulated in the Advanced System Format container format. Typically, WMA files describe ASF files that use Windows Media Video codecs. The ASF container could support digital rights management using a group of ellipc curve crytoraphy key exchange, a custom block cipher, and the SHA-1 hashing function and DES block cipher. In addition to ASF container, you can also put WMV into the Matroska or AVI container format, and the outcome will have .AVI and .MKV file extensions, respectively. WMV 9 video compression Manager codec implementation is used to store WMV in an AVI file.

Video Quality

In terms of visual quality, WMV 7 and 8 codecs were similar to MPEG-4, and WMV 9 is equivalent to H 264 main, and high profile. Whereas WMV 9/VC-1 has certain advantages over H.264 such as support for non-square integer transforms, H.264 is more constantly able to acquiesce enhanced photo quality because it supports reference B-frames, multiple reference frames, context-adaptive binary arithmetic coding etc.

Advantages of WMV

  • WMV codec 9 is open but Microsoft proprietary standard
  • Large files can be easily compressed without losing quality
  • Supports many portable video playing devices and streaming media clients
  • WMV file can be played on various video players that use FFmpeg
  • Offers digital rights management facilities

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