AVCHD vs MP4, The Differences Between AVCHD and MP4

While both of these formats are very similar to one another, they do have differences that affect their practicality as well as user-friendliness. While both types are video recording files, only one of them is actually better in capturing audio playback as well as the video quality, maintaining high resolution pictures at a high speed. Avchd can produce blu-ray disks and mp4 can do the same but in the form of soft copies of the file. Both have their weakness and strengths, and if they stand out in one aspect, they do not in another. Let us take a look at their direct comparison and determine ourselves.

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Part 1. AVCHD vs MP4, Differences Between AVCHD and MP4

File Extension AVCHD MP4
Developer Developed through a joint cooperation between Sony and Panasonic, a format made especially for use in camcorders with high definition quality, in other words for professional video recording. Developed by the International Standardization Organization (ISO), files that end with .MP4 are made to be compatible with a wide variety of media players as well as media devices. This type of file extension will support relatively all media players, even the default ones.
History Advanced Video Coding High Definition or avchd was first introduced into the world of high definition playback and digital recording in 2006, followed by Sony’s first release of consumer avchd camcorder in 2007. Panasonic followed suit with their version of professional camcorder in 2008. However, it was only in 2011 until the consumer camcorder was made to handle 1080-line 50-frame/s and 60-frame/s modes (avchd Progressive) and stereoscopic video (avchd 3D). This new mode comes with a drawback; requiring twice the data rate of previous models. While there are better video resolution available nowadays, all of it would not have been possible without the emergence of avchd. As part of ISO’s base media file format, MP4 or MPEG-4 (Moving Picture Expert Group-4) is based directly from QuickTime File Format. MP4 file extensions were made to support Initial Object Descriptors along with other MPEG functions. MP4 file format was first released in 1999 and has since been improved and upgraded a few times until its re-release in 2003, marking its final version as well as the version that is currently in use by large parts of the world. One of the significant improvements on MP4 files is the enhanced splitting loading speed. Unless protected, MP4 files can be accessed almost anywhere.
Popularity In terms of the quality of video playback, avchd is much better in which it can record videos of 1080p resolution at 60 frames per second. avchd is popular with fans of high quality videos. When storing however, videos from avchd is only suitable for Blu-Ray discs as well as watching on HDTV, while MP4 can saved as a single video file which can then be accessed anywhere, even through a mobile phone.
Data streams Audio, video and ancillary as well as subtitle streams of avchd are multiplexed and stored as a binary file through an MPEG transport stream. Memory cards and HDDs of avchd employ the use of .FAT file system while UDF is used for optical discs. Usually avchd camcorders record using Dolby Digital compression scheme for audio files. It also supports stereo and multichannel audio. The audio data rate can be anywhere between 64 k/bits to 640 k/bits. In terms of practical uses, either by professionals or consumers, a date rate between 256 k/bits and 384 k/bits has been recorded. MP4 files store data through private streams with the streaming information commonly burned into a separate track, included separately. Compatible codecs for this format can be referred at the MP4 registration authority website, where you can find a list of compatible to use media players and devices. Codecs used to support additional data streams are MPEG-4 parts 10 and 2, Advanced Audio Coding and Audio Lossless as well as MPEG-4 Timed Text for purposes of subtitles producing.
Metadata A data that explains its own properties, metadata explains details about the author and the applications that are in use. Unfortunately metadata is not available in avchd or avchd lite files. Without properly keeping up time, your files can lose track of the time of recording, which occurs as the display of avchd is unable to show the time. Metadata is the descriptive and structural data that can explain a number of details of the data itself, like how the data was created, what the purposes of the data are along with information on the creator or author of the data. This info are kept and managed in a database of data, called the metadata registry or metadata repository. It is easiest to read metadata when it comes in text document form.
Pros 1 – Amazing live-pictures.
2 – Using Dolby Digital AC-3 for audio codec fpr higher sound quality.
3 – Can record up to 1920x1080/60i, 50i (16:9) resolution with ease.
4 – Compatible for Blu-ray Disc® format.
1 – Better storing capability for various and multiple files.
2 – Can be saved as a single movie file for easy access.
3 – Files are easier to copy, move and uploaded to the net.
Cons 1 – Using MPEG-2 System (.M2TS file extension) for saving, more difficult to save in one single file.
2 – Needs to be used with certain recording media devices like Hard Disk or Memory Stick® media.
3 – Disproportionate file size (100 MB on avchd is only 25 MB in other file type).
1 – Highest resolution for MP4 is 1440x1080/30p (16:9).
2 – Audio channel is only available on 2 channels/48 kHz (sampled frequency).
3 – Using MPEG-4 AAC LC audio codec, which is a low complexity codec.
Used by As its name suggests, avchd is used mainly by people who can appreciate clear and high definition pictures. People who wish to save up on expenses including the use of storage area would choose recording through MP4. Despite being later in conversion and such, the small file size makes it all worth it.
Related links 1. VPN Server for China
2. All about avchd
1. avchd VS MP4: Pros and Cons of avchd over MP4 in Quality and File Size
2. VideoHelp Forum
3. MPEG-4 Part 14

Part 2. How to Download and Play MP4 and AVCHD

MP4 and avchd are two commonly used formats for video files which are similar yet distinct. Both these file formats are readily available for free download from the Internet, but you will need some kind of external software package to download them. So if you are looking forward for a similar software package that can help you in such a scenario, then iTube Studio is the best solution for you.

iTube Studio - Best Vimeo Downloader to Download Embedded Videos

  • Download videos from YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, Vevo, MTV, Dailymotion, Facebook and other 10,000+ pupular sites.
  • Exceptionally good in converting any video to more than 150 file formats making the video best suited for your every purpose.
  • Its ability to record the videos from the websites with its in-built screen recording function makes it stand out amongst others.
  • Supports all major web video portals and more than 10,000 video sharing websites.
  • The lightning speed offered by this program to download your videos 3X faster than any other program is remarkable.
  • This Vimeo embedded video downloader equips with a video recorder which allows to capture from any online site.
  • It holds a Private Mode to fully protect your video downloading information with a password.

How to download MP4 and avchd using iTube Studio?

If you are looking forward to downloading MP4 and avchd video files using iTube Studio, then please follow the steps below:

Step 1 Install and runiTube Studio

iTube Studio is available in both the trial as well as the paid version. Download and install the software on your computer. Once installed, double click its shortcut icon to launch the software.

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Step 2 Find your MP4 or avchd file to download

After launching theiTube Studio software package, the next step is to start looking for the MP4 or avchd file that you want to download. You can use any Internet browser for looking for your favorite videos. There are several websites like YouTube, Dailymotion etc. from where you can get the best quality MP4 and avchd files.

Step 3 Download the videos

Once you have chosen the video that you want to download, the next step is to actually start the download process. You can download the videos in two ways:

Method 1: Using the “+ Paste URL” button: You can copy the URL of the video, and go toiTube Studio to tap "+ Paste URL" to start the download process.

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Method 2: By clicking on the “Download” button at the top-right corner of the video area: When you play videos on popular video websites like YouTube, you can see a “Download” button at the top of the video which is provided byiTube Studio. Clicking on this button will start the download process iniTube Studio immediately.

(Optional) From the drop down menu, you can choose to set the quality / resolution of the video per your request. Or you will download the video with the default resolution.

download mp4

Step 4 (Optional) Convert the downloaded video

Once you have completed the download process, the downloaded file is available in the “Downloaded” section from where you can convert the video to be other different format you want. Select the videos you want to convert, and add them to Convert list, you can choose to convert the MP4 videos to be AVCHD or other format you want by clicking the “Convert” button.

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Step 5 Play the downloaded avchd file

Once you have completed the converted process, the converted file is available in the “Converted” section from where you can play your file or perform various operations on it.

download mp4

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