Video Editing Tools: An Introduction to Nandub

In terms of video editing tools, Nandub is what was used to effectively encode AVI files by making use of DivX and MPEG4v2, which in turn used smart bitrate controlling technology. Not designed to be a general AVI capturing and editing tool, Nandub had little relation to its predecessor of a similar name, VirtualDub.

SBC and Nandub

SBC encoding brought about a new method of encoding DivX movies which more or less replaced Nandub, but sticks to its basic principles. Nandub seemed to produce higher quality with a smaller file size, but that was because of a simple misunderstanding. A piece of film encoded with a fast motion codec at a rate of 6000kbps will invariably produce an end product that appears much worse than a low motion piece of film encoded with a slower speed of 3000kbps.

Less Is More

It might seem natural to assume, then, that using low motion will achieve a smaller size and better quality, but you would be mistaken. Comparing file sizes between the 6000kbps movie and the 3000kbps movie would reveal that the file size of the 3000kbps movie is actually twice that of the 6000kbps one, and this is the principle that applies to Nandub.

It's not only Nandub this principle applies to, it's also Windows Media Encoder 8 and the MM4 encoders like AVIRevolution and MakeFilm. Comparing a clip from one of these to the same thing encoded by an ordinary DivX codec, the MM4 or Nandub one will always be the same quality. The power of these programs is only in their ability to make the best possible use of all space to hand.

The way Nandub accomplishes this is to make the most efficient use possible of a 2-pass Bitrate Variable encoding scheme.


When it comes to this kind of operation, Nandub has the best potential to produce good results, above and beyond any other means at your disposal. The downside of this may be that Nandub features little in the way of quality enhancement. There may be a host of adjustments to make, but none of them really seem to improve quality. There may be just 2 or 3 options that are responsible for very significant quality controlling actions.

Many of Nandub's settings seem to do virtually or actually nothing. The reason for there being so many controls seems that it is still in the experimental model stage. Providing users with control over every aspect of the program amounts to removing structure and allowing everyone to create the software themselves according to what works best for them.

Nandub may be a very useful tool for a great many people, but it does require a good deal of work if you are to get used to it well enough to get a lot out of it. It performs its functions well, but leaves something to be desired in terms of cohesion.

Professionals will no doubt continue to use Nandub effectively and to alter its configuration to allow for a bigger and better scope. One day, we might even see a definitive version.