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    How to use USB drives for video playback?
    #1
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    Hi all. I need to figure out how to use a USB flash drive for a deliverable to clients, meaning they get their wedding video on a flash drive (instead of a disc) and they can plug it in their TV to watch or watch from computer. Copying to a computer is easy but getting it to play on a TV not as much.

    Any suggestions on how to do this correctly?
    NTFS, FAT32, etc?
    Any certain file structure/format?


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    #2
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    It depends what kind of TV they have.


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    #3
    Senior Member egproductions's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nothing View Post
    It depends what kind of TV they have.
    This, but also your best bet is fat32, h.264, under 10mbps, and make sure the file is on the root level (not in subdirectories). Newer TVs might support exfat.
    If a client comes back saying it doesnt work, just tell them to try it on another TV.
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    #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by egproductions View Post
    This, but also your best bet is fat32, h.264, under 10mbps, and make sure the file is on the root level (not in subdirectories). Newer TVs might support exfat.
    If a client comes back saying it doesnt work, just tell them to try it on another TV.
    Yup, I agree. The smarter the TV or disk player, the more likely it will work. Most Bluray players will be able to play the above files. Also typically in an mp4 wrapper.

    Some will be able to do playlists, but now we are talking about a lot of testing.

    Also note that flash drives are not forever, they get data rot after long term storage or even use. You get a lot of talk about this on the FreeNAS forums because it was designed to operate from USB boot media.


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    #5
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    Thanks.
    Yeah I realize it is hit or miss on different TVs so I'm trying to do it so it works on as many as I can.
    The flash drive I tested came FAT32 and I copied an .mp4 (h.264) 300MB file size at the root (no sub folders) and my older Sony TV did not work. However the bit rate was higher than 10mbs so I'll try again.
    I don't think I want to risk exFAT due to compatibility.

    I believe FAT32 is limited to 4GB file sizes so long videos will need to be broken up and then numbered like
    dance00001.mp4
    dance00002.mp4
    dance00003.mp4

    or maybe not even use letters, just numbers..
    0001.mp4
    0002.mp4
    0003.mp4

    Any other thoughts?


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    #6
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    You are correct, it will need to be broken into smaller than 4gb chunks. After that, I haven't played with it too much and all of our monitors are new enough that it just works.


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