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Recommended upload encoding settings

Container: MP4
  • No Edit Lists (or the video might not be processed correctly)
  • moov atom at the front of the file (Fast Start)
Audio codec: AAC-LC
  • Channels: Stereo or Stereo + 5.1
  • Sample rate 96 khz or 48 khz
Video codec: H.264
  • Progressive scan (no interlacing)
  • High Profile
  • 2 consecutive B frames
  • Closed GOP. GOP of half the frame rate.
  • CABAC
  • Variable bitrate. No bitrate limit required, although we offer recommended bitrates below for reference
  • Chroma subsampling: 4:2:0
Frame rate

Content should be encoded and uploaded using the same frame rate that was used during recording.

Common frame rates include: 24, 25, 30, 48, 50 and 60 frames per second (other frame rates are also acceptable).

Interlaced content should be deinterlaced before uploading. For example, 1080i60 content should be deinterlaced to 1080p30, going from 60 interlaced fields per second to 30 progressive frames per second.

Bitrate

The bitrates below are recommendations for uploads. Audio playback bitrate is not related to video resolution.

Recommended video bitrates for SDR uploads

Type Video Bitrate, Standard Frame Rate
(24, 25, 30)
Video Bitrate, High Frame Rate
(48, 50, 60)
2160 p (4k) 35-45 Mbps 53-68 Mbps
1440 p (2k) 16 Mbps 24 Mbps
1080 p 8 Mbps 12 Mbps
720 p 5 Mbps 7.5 Mbps
480 p 2.5 Mbps 4 Mbps
360 p 1 Mbps 1.5 Mbps
 

Recommended video bitrates for HDR uploads

Type Video Bitrate, Standard Frame Rate
(24, 25, 30)
Video Bitrate, High Frame Rate
(48, 50, 60)
2160 p (4k) 44-56 Mbps 66-85 Mbps
1440 p (2k) 20 Mbps 30 Mbps
1080 p 10 Mbps 15 Mbps
720 p 6.5 Mbps 9.5 Mbps
480 p

Not supported

Not supported
360 p Not supported Not supported
 

Recommended audio bitrates for uploads

Type Audio Bitrate
Mono 128 kbps
Stereo 384 kbps
5.1 512 kbps
Resolution and aspect ratio

YouTube uses 16:9 aspect ratio players. If you're uploading a non-16:9 file, it will be processed and displayed correctly as well, with pillar boxes (black bars on the left and right) or letter boxes (black bars at the top and bottom) provided by the player.

Learn how to use resolution and aspect ratios correctly.

 
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