Recording High Definition Video – The file size of your movie collection can easily spiral out of control: How to reduce the size of 4K movies

Smartphone, DSLR and GoPro all record high definition video. The file size of your movie collection can easily spiral out of control. Beware when your memory card is full or you try to share any of these movies online.

You can reduce the size of a video clip by compressing it or converting it to other formats; you can learn to do this here. However, the bad news is that your video will degrade unless you change some settings. How to strike a balance between the two? Keep reading to find out.

Why do we need to compress 4K video?

While 4K UHD video looks better on wide TVs, the constraints of large 4K movies force you to limit 4K video file sizes. Let’s take a look at what drives you to compress a 4K movie. 4K HEVC playback presents many challenges due to incompatibility issues with most devices.

If you often create 4K content, the storage capacity of your camera or phone may soon fill up. Video files larger than 4GB may be prohibited by some computer hard drives, USB flash drives and other storage devices. To store a huge 4K video on a FAT32 card, reduce the file size to less than 4GB.

Why is a smaller file size better?

Here’s why you need to downsize your videos:

To improve your workflow

Reducing the video file size saves time when working with high resolution source files like 4K video. Many video files, especially those from high-end cameras, are large and can strain your computer’s resources while editing. You can create proxy files that use less data while maintaining the aspect ratio for faster editing. Compress video files to a suitable format such as MP4 to improve process efficiency. After that, when you export, Media Encoder will use your high resolution sources.

To ensure a better user experience

When you post a video to Facebook or YouTube, it is compressed to fit various devices. Reducing the size of video files is useful for your audience if you plan to host the video yourself or want to share it more simply. Many consumers watch videos on smartphones, older PCs, or slower Wi-Fi or cellular connections; thus, video content providers must take this into account when creating large high-resolution files. If you submit video content, make sure it is of excellent quality and available to the widest possible audience. Reduce the resolution or data rate of the file.

Steps to reduce video size

Here is how you can reduce the size of your video:

1. Choose the right software

You’ll need a sturdy computer that can handle the weight of your videos and the processing capacity of the software. The best tools for 4k resolution videos are Leawo, Landpawand winxdvd. Download software whose user interface and features meet your video compression requirements.

2. Start with audio

Examine the sound before reducing the picture quality. Unless your project demands the highest possible audio quality, always start with sound.

  • Examine the number of audio tracks. One is enough. Extract English or other language audio from a movie. If you’re making a video, keep the first track. Delete tracks you don’t need.
  • Under codec, choose AAC (CoreAudio) or MP3. These are lossy audio file formats that can be used in many situations. The same lossy formats can be used for concerts and other sound-dependent entertainment.
  • Bitrate should be set to 160 for most videos. Choose a higher bitrate for videos with a lot of sound (256 or 320).
  • It is ideal to leave the sample rate on Auto, although you can change it to reduce the file size. Set it to 32 for human speech and 48 for sound quality.

3. Choose the best codec and container

For the original video, use the highest quality codec and video container. Choosing the most efficient codec and container reduces file size. Encoders and decoders use codecs to convert video into bytes and determine its quality. The container influences the compatibility of devices and services.

Choose H.264 for the video codec. Compared to MPEG-4, it is the most widely used video compression codec. It is also recognized by your Raspberry Pi and a simple television. Choose MP4 for the container. MP4 is also the most used video file format. YouTube, Vimeo and Facebook all recommend MP4 over others.

4. Next, Resolution

Most people have HD or Full HD capable televisions, but visual quality isn’t as important as you might think. The resolution affects the size of the movie, but the quality can be comparable to the original. You’ll see a significantly greater impact of your viewing distance, TV upscaling algorithm, and video bitrate.

Check the original resolution of the video and go down one level. If you only plan to upload to YouTube or Facebook, 720p is best (assuming file size is more important to you than resolution).

5. Use Bitrate

Bit rate is the most critical factor in video quality. Simply put, bitrate is the amount of data sent per second to the screen. More data means better video quality. Therefore, reducing the bit rate can significantly reduce video quality.

The large files come from most DSLR cameras recording video at high bitrates. Again, YouTube gives criteria for any video you submit. You shouldn’t go below these levels, but you can usually go lower if yours is higher.

6. Change the frame rate if needed

Never believe anyone who says you should lower the frame rate to lower the video bitrate. Keep your video at the same frame rate. The human eye only needs 24-30 frames per second for a good image, so lowering the frame rate seems reasonable. But it can wreak havoc on the smoothness of the video, ruining it before you even see it.


By using these processes to reduce video file size without sacrificing quality, you can significantly reduce the file size of a video. You can even achieve your desired lens size without having to change resolution or bitrate; it is normally best to follow these processes step by step, modifying only what is necessary. Once you get it all figured out, you can play, download and stream these files from anywhere.