If you’re using GoPro Studio to edit and create your GoPro footage, you have the option to export them in either the H264 or GoPro CineForm formats.
H264 (or, technically, H.264) has become the de facto standard for web video. While it’s not actually open-source, in practice it’s very widely compatible and its compression algorithm results in a very good compromise between filesize and visual quality. That makes it a very good option for sharing video on the web–Youtube and Vimeo use it, among many other sites.
But H264’s algorithm involves quite a lot of compression. Depending on the settings you use, it can be barely perceptible visually. But it also means that quite a lot of information is being discarded that can’t be recovered. That makes it less than ideal for editing video, when you want to preserve high quality during the editing process so you can better control the quality when you export it for sharing.
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