How to make a high quality HD MP4 iPhoto Slideshow
For some reason, with iPhoto ’11, I just couldn’t get high quality MP4 slideshows to play on my PS3. The quality was terrible, especially in the cross-fade. I also recently wrote an article on how to convert MOV, which comes out great, to MP4 using iMovieHD, but again, either the file was too big, or the quality was too bad. You also may have noticed that on some converters, your cross-fade disappears. This is because the MOV has some crazy JPEG/Crossfade filter that nobody else recognizes. I messed around with just about every setting in the Custom Export screen, and finally gave up. So here’s how to create an HD, high quality MP4 from iPhoto that’s super easy.
First, download, compile and install ffmpeg. This article by Stephen Jungels is invaluable. I added a few more options to the configure command though: –enable-avfilter –enable-swscale (I have a backup of these instructions. Contact me if the page by Stephen is unavailable).
First of all, you want to do a custom export to a QuickTime Movie.
Click “Options” and set the “Size” of the movie. This’ll make it pretty big. It might tell you that you need several gigs, but the size will come down.
Now pick your poison for the compression settings. I used these, and the quality was good.
Once you have the MOV or M4V, you’ll need to flip it to MP4 using ffmpeg. I did ffmpeg -i “Tree&JoelSlideShow-HD.mov” -sameq -ab 262144 TreeJoelSlideShow-HD.mp4
Voila. A high quality MP4. My 3.5 minute slideshow came to about 175MB. Not too bad.