How to upload Flash videos to Sermon Connect

There are two different ways to integrate videos into Sermon Connect; one is by connecting the video via a program such as Youtube or Vimeo, and the other is by manually uploading a video to Sermon Connect itself.  This article covers how to get a video into Sermon Connect via uploading.

Before they can be uploaded to Sermon Connect, your video files will need to be changed into another popular video format: Flash Video (.flv). The process of changing a file from one type to another is called encoding.


There are many different pieces of Flash Video Encoding software available. By far, the best option for encoding videos into the FLV format is the Professional version of Adobe Flash. If you already own this piece of software, you do not need to use an alternative. However, if you do not own this piece of software, it would be highly advised to not spend $699 (at the time of this writing) and the time it will take to learn it. For more information about using Flash to encode videos, check out this excellent guide by Adobe. There are some quality, free alternatives.

For Windows, we recommend Format Factory, located at www.formatoz.com.  This program can encode almost anything to anything else and is very versitile in its offerings.

For Macintosh, we recommend Kigo Video Converter, located at http://www.kigo-video-converter.com/free-video-converter-mac/.  This program specializes in converting to .flv for video and .mp3 for audio, which is what Sermon Connect uses.

*Please note: faithHighway cannot offer support on programs such as Format Factory or Kigo Video Converter because they are 3rd party programs that were not developed by faithHighway.
When you encode your video file, here are some suggested settings to use:

Dimensions
Width: 320px
Height: 240px
This is the standard size of the Sermon Connect video player.  Increasing the dimensions of your video will greatly increase the file size and possibly not allow it to fit correctly in the player window.

Video Bitrate
200 kbps – 400 kbps
Video Bitrate being set too high is the most common cause of video quality issues when trying to stream through Sermon Connect.

Audio Bitrate
16 kbps – 128 kbps (64 kbps is CD quality standard)
Since most videos loaded into Sermon Connect will be videos of sermons, the spoken-word audio of the video does not have to be as high of a bitrate as music audio to sound good.

Framerate
15 – 30 Frames per second
If the framerate is any higher, your viewers may not have enough bandwidth to view it without skipping. If the framerate is any lower, your video will appear choppy.

The expected file size of videos encoded with the minimal settings will be about 100MB per hour of video (or ~1.7 MB/minute) and about double for the maximum displayed settings.  If your video file has a considerably larger file size than it should, this will be due to the video bitrate and / or framerate of the existing video, and viewers will most likely have a difficult time watching the video without it skipping.