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Vimeo vs. YouTube

The first time I needed video broadcasting service it was for a screencast of Hugin’s fast preview functionality, developed as a Google Summer of Code project by James Legg. I went to the GSoC mentors mailing list for intelligent advice and made an informed choice: Vimeo had the better conversion quality. A few month later I needed broadcasting services again and I kept using Vimeo to share with family and friends the exploits of our son. I like the service, its clean look and most of all its outmost respect of privacy and of content ownership.

When I applied for the best job in the world, I knew they were partnering with YouTube. I also knew that in the meantime YouTube upgraded its encoding quality. Is it good enough to motivate me to switch? YouTube is the most popular and has become synonymous with online movies like MP3 has become synonymous of digital music files. There are better formats for digital music files than MP3, like the lossless Monkey’s Audio APE or the Open Source OGG-Vorbis. So how does YouTube compare to Vimeo today?

Find it out for yourself below, where the two services are side by side. In the process of producing my video, I ran it through Vimeo to control rendering after conversion before submitting. Note that for HD playback you’ll need to click and go to the respective YouTube/Vimeo sites. This article is not really in my interest as the contest is still on and my interest is to direct traffic to my 60 seconds clip here, and for you to vote for it and to talk about it with other friends so that they go watch and vote too. If you care about VR and want to see this big PR-event showcase VR as well, you have an interest to vote for me too since you know that I will have all of my pano gear with me and will put it to good use, promoting the techniques that you too are using and promoting.

A few more details of the video. I usually render in FullHD but I ended up rendering this one in “simple” HD because of the weight limitation (my 60 seconds video clip ended up at 45MB). Below are, side by side, the Vimeo-encoded and the YouTube-encoded versions of the clip. Up to you to judge which quality you like most.