Video Essentials

Choosing a UGC Site, Part 3: Viddler

[Editor’s note: Viddler has changed its focus and now offers video-based training to B2Bs. 8/9/16]

If you have a Viddler personal account, you can upload an unlimited number of files of any duration, each up to 500 MB in size, though all are encoded in SD resolution. The Viddler Terms of Use state “If the primary purpose of your video is to promote a product, service, event, or website for a business, you must have a valid Viddler Business Services Contract to upload your video.” If you do upgrade, you’ll have to spend a minimum of $100/month, for which you’ll get the ability to upload 2 GB and larger files, prioritized encoding, and HD video. I looked at the personal account.


For me, the unique selling proposition for Viddler are the tags that you can insert into your videos, like the Encoding for the iPad tag you can see in the graphic below. These allow users to jump to the section of the video that they’re most interested in and are very easy to insert.

I love Viddler’s tagging feature, but quality is generally just middle of the road.

Viddler used a “mystery” codec that none of my tools could identify, which produced OK quality at the applied data rates, which were generally pretty chintzy. For example, in the SD test clip encoded at 640×360 resolution, Viddler encoded at 380 kbps, compared to 1321 kbps for Word Press, 753 kbps for YouTube, and 603 kbps for Vimeo. As a result, quality was middle of the road in the SD and HD test clip (encoded at 640×360 at 411 kbps), though the data rate of the screencam-based tutorial clip was higher than most, and quality quite good.

The quality of the interlaced DV file was awful, incorrectly scaled with no deinterlacing. You should definitely scale and deinterlace before uploading to Viddler.

Embedding options are good, but didn’t work as advertised, at least in my one test case. Specifically, when choosing your embed code, you can select “Flash with HTML5 mobile fallback” which I presumed would make the videos play on my iPad, but no dice. Otherwise, you can choose a custom player size, and choose between the full player with tagging and other features, and simple player with fewer features.

Overall, if you’ve got the budget, Viddler’s tagging feature makes the business service worth checking out. If you’re looking for the optimum free vehicle for embedding videos into your own website, there are better options. You can see embedded Viddler videos below.

HD Test File

SD Test File

Screencam File

DV File

iPod Touch File


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