quick question,

i am curious to know what is the difference between a video compressor and a video encoder? are they the same thing? if not, what differences are there?

what are the fundamental differences between a video encoder and a video compressor?

i heard a phrase "not all forms of encoding are compression but all forms of compression are encoding" or do i have it backwards? or is the phrase just wrong?

thank you

2 Answers 2


It's kinda two separate things, encoding is the practice of how the visual data is stored. A very simple example would be that encoding for talking is written language, for each vowel, we set one character like A. So to encode spoken language to text, we use the 26 characters in the alphabet.

Compression on the other hand is the practice of reducing the storage space required to store said encoding. To continue with the language example, instead of saying "It is", we just write "It's" and have thus saved 1 character. Or instead of writing "Best Regards" we write "BR". This is compression, since it requires less space to write. Compression comes in two forms, lossy or lossless, in lossless compression, all data is stored, just in a smaller size, like in "It is" -> "It's", the meaning is still the same. Lossy on the otherhand removes some information, "BR" isn't definitely "Best Regards", but could also be anything else. So we lost some information there. But since we know what BR in a letter means, we can still read it correctly.

Encoding is always neccessary to store visual data, but compression is not.


Imagine you have a big bag of candy, and you want to make it smaller to save space, but you still want it to taste yummy. That's kinda of like what video compression and video encoding do but for videos instead of candy.

Video Compression-

Video compression is like squishing your video to make it smaller. It takes up less space, which is great for saving storage and for streaming videos online. It's like making your candy pieces smaller so you can fit more in your bag, but they still taste good.

Video Encoding-

Video encoding is a bit like a magic recipe to make your video look great while it's squished. It's about making sure the video still looks good even when it's small.

So, in simple terms, video compression is about making the video file smaller, and video encoding is about making sure it still looks good even after it's squished. They work together to make videos easy to store, send, and watch.

Technically, video compression reduces the file size by removing unnecessary data, while video encoding prepares the compressed video for playback by converting it into a specific format and encoding it using a chosen codec. These two processes work hand in hand to make videos smaller for storage and transmission while ensuring they still look good.

I hope this helps you.

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