The original Tsunami MPEG encoder was one of the first to be clearly geared toward the consumer market instead of being designed for inclusion in other software or use by video professionals. Because of this unique heritage, the various incarnation's of TMPG's software have tended to lean toward an interface that doesn't require the user to have a lot of in-depth video related expertise. TMPGEnc XPress 4 continues that tradition, making it relatively easy for the average person to start using it with little or no training.
Don't let the program's simplicity fool you though. At the heart of TMPGEnc XPress 4 are multiple high quality video encoding engines, and even a connection to Windows' own VfW encoding capabilities. With all of TMPGEnc's settings for various encoders, it's best to take a look at them one at a time. This guide includes details for MPEG-2 and MPEG-1 video encoding. Not only can the program give you high quality results for standard definition (up to 720x480/576), but it can also take advantage of additional MPEG-2 profiles for encoding high definition video up to 1920x1080.
TMPGEnc XPress includes easy to use wizards and templates that can make it fairly painless for someone who knows very little to encode with high quality results. If you prefer to decide on the settings yourself, or just want to understand the settings being used in a particular template, you'll want to make sure you have a basic understanding of digital video, especially MPEG-2 compression. Our Digiital Video Fundamentals guides can help you get started with the basics if you're a complete novice.
TMPGEnc DVD Source CreatorAnother option for people who don't need all the options in the full XPress encoder suite is TMPGEnc DVD Source Creator. It's specifically designed to create DVD, SVCD, and VCD compliant video, and utilizes templates from TMPGEnc XPress to ensure standards compliance. Fortunately, the interface and settings are consistent between both programs, so learning one should help with the other. If you're undecided whether you want to pay for the extra options with TMPGEnc XPress you should download the trial. Source Creator doesn't have a trial, but can be simulated with the templates in TMPGEnc XPress.
Required SoftwareTMPGEnc XPress 4
TMPGEnc DVD Source Creator 4
Digital Video Fundamentals Guides