How Videos Are Encoded
Videos uploaded to Thinkific are hosted with Wistia and are encoded based on the bitrate and video dimensions (in pixels) of your original video file. This means that the highest resolution available is defined by both the number of pixels and bitrate (data processed per second) of the video that you upload. The higher the pixels and bitrate, the higher the resolution.
If you notice that you don't have as many resolution or quality options as expected, it is likely that your original file was uploaded with a lower bitrate or a 'variable bitrate'. Exporting with a variable bitrate is quite common in many video application export settings. Variable bitrate is a common issue with screen recordings because the bitrate can fluctuate throughout the video. Remember that bitrate is simply how much data is processed in your video per second!
With screen recordings and lower bitrate videos, Wistia provides different quality options. For videos uploaded with a bit rate less than 1,200 Kbps, there is a separate encoding process called Low Bit Rate aka “Screencast” Encoding. This means that all resolution options will not be available in Thinkific if you have uploaded a video with a bitrate less than 1,200 Kbps.
For videos higher than 1,200 Kbps, Wistia uses a width-based encoding algorithm to determine the quality of assets that a video will receive. This means that the the more pixels the original video has, the higher quality output it will have.
For example, if you want your video to play in 1080p quality, your original video must be at least 1920px wide. If you want 720p quality, your video must be at least 1280px wide.
Great! So how do I fix my video?
Now that we understand the resolutions available are based on the video dimensions and bitrate of your original video file, you will just need to re-export your video with the right settings to ensure you have all desired resolutions available in Thinkific!
Check out Wistia's recommended bitrate and required video dimensions to achieve the quality you are looking for:
|Quality||Dimensions in pixels (width x height)||Recommend Bitrate|
|2160p (4K)||3840 x 2160||11,250 kbps|
|1080p||1920 x 1080||5,625 kbps|
|720p||1280 x 720||3,750 kbps|
|540p||960 x 540||1,800 kbps|
|360p||640 x 360||1,200 kbps|
|224p||400 x 224||300 kbps|
Re-exporting Your Video
If you currently have a screen recording with variable bitrate, an easy way to make sure you have the correct settings is to run your video through Handbrake, which is a free tool to download and use! Make sure to refer to the table above for your export settings.
If that doesn't work for you, you'll need to re-export the file from your original video platform using the recommend export settings in the table above.
Also check out Wistia's exporting guides for tips!