What is AVI ?

AVI is an abbreviation for Audio Video Interleave. AVI files can contain both audio and video data in a file container that allows synchronous audio-with-video playback. AVI format supposes division into blocks, also known as chunks, which are identified by a FourCC tag. The first block is the header and contains metadata about the video (its width, height, frame rate). The second contains the actual audio and video data making up the actual movie. The third optional block specifies the physical addresses of the data chunks of the video file.

What is AVI designed for?

AVI is a multimedia container format created by Microsoft in 1992. AVI files also use the file format extensions developed by the Matrox OpenDML group in 1996 which are supported by Microsoft, and are unofficially called "AVI 2.0". Newer container formats such as Matroska, Ogg and MP4 support specific types of VBR data, can contain variable frame rate material and provide a standardised way to encode aspect ratio information while AVI do not.

What are AVI special features?

  • is divided into blocks (chunks): the first two are obligatory as they contain audio/video metadata, while the third is optional
  • audio data is stored uncompressed in PCM (Pulse Code Modulation) format while the video data is stored in compressed format
  • supports multiple streaming audio and video

What are AVI advantages?

  • excellent fidelity of the audio
  • provides high compatibility with VirtualDub and Windows Media Player
  • advanced DV-AVI standard is compressed to conform with DV standards
  • is widely used in business (advertisements, promo-videos)
  • does not require any special hardware or software

Where it can be applied?

AVI files is supported by different platforms: Windows (Windows Media Player, QuickTime Player, VLC media player, Winamp), Mac OS (Windows Media Player, QuickTime Player, VLC media player) or Linux (VLC media player, Xine multimedia player). Due to the limited resolution and small file size many multimedia producers actively use AVI to distribute their production.

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