Glossary of Video Terms

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Terminology Description
Blu Ray Disc

A standard created by Apple, Dell, Hitachi, HP, JVC, LG, Mitsubishi, Panasonic, Pioneer, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Sony, TDK, and Thomson for encoding high definition video for optical disc playback. Based on MPEG-4 AVC  – part of the MPEG-4 standard also known as H.246 (High Profile and Main Profile). Blu Ray Discs are not recommended for long-term preservation.


Broadcast Wave Format - This format is derived from the ubiquitous Wave audio format. The format was created for professionals, enabling the ability to embed standardized metadata into the file itself. The extension for the BWF is also .wav.


A Byte refers to a set of 8 bits. An 8-bit sample requires one byte of memory to store, while a 16-bit sample requires two bytes of memory to store.


Constant Bit Rate - is a mode for encoding audio or video in which the bitrate for each frame or unit is restricted to remain constant.  Bitrate has a direct correlation to file size and quality. The higher the bitrate the better the quality (and the larger the file size). Variable bitrate (VBR) provides an alternative that allows for efficient monitoring of audio or video complexity in able to increase or decrease bitrate accordingly. The result is a lower bitrate for simple scenes, a higher bitrate for more complex visual scenes and, ultimately, yielding a better overall rendering in a smaller or the same file size.