What is H.264? Differences from H.265, and How to Play or Convert!

This passage introduces methods for compressing video data using the H.264 codec, which is more suitable for storing on devices like hard disks. It explains the overview of H.264, the differences compared to H.265, and provides details on playback and conversion methods for those who want to compress videos using H.264.

What is H264?

H.264, also known as AVC (Advanced Video Coding), is a video compression standard used to compress videos. It was internationally standardized in 2003, offering twice the compression efficiency compared to the previously widely used MPEG-2. H.264 is currently one of the most widely used video codecs and is employed both domestically and internationally. By compressing videos using H.264, it becomes easier to view videos on various devices.

H.264 is utilized in web browsers on computers and is commonly used in smartphones. It is an essential technology for streaming videos on popular video-sharing websites. The versatility of H.264 allows it to serve various purposes.

H.264 was developed by the ITU-T VCEG (Video Coding Experts Group) in collaboration with ISO/IEC JTC1 MPEG. The ITU-T VCEG remains responsible for maintaining the standard. H.264 gained widespread adoption on the internet due to its ability to deliver high-quality images without requiring excessive bandwidth. It can also be used for simultaneous video streaming to multiple displays.

H.264 is suitable for long-distance video distribution, enabling stable delivery using existing wiring infrastructure. It has become the standard compression format for video surveillance systems, used to monitor educational settings, environment surveillance via drones, and other applications. Moreover, H.264 finds application in internet conferences, digital signage, and more.

Overall, H.264 is a widely used video compression standard, known for its high compression efficiency, versatility, and suitability for various video-related applications.

Difference between H264 and H265

H.265, also known as H.265/HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding), is a video compression standard that offers higher compression performance than H.264. It was officially adopted as an international standard in 2013. H.265 provides better compression efficiency, achieving four times the compression ratio compared to MPEG-2 and twice the compression ratio compared to H.264. By using H.265 for video compression, it became possible to store images of similar quality to H.264 but with only half the file size.

In addition to compression ratio, H.265 outperforms H.264 in various aspects. One notable aspect is its support for a wider range of frame rates. While H.264 only supports videos up to 60fps (frames per second), H.265 can handle video data up to 300fps. Frame rate refers to the number of frames that can be displayed per second, and a higher frame rate results in smoother motion. H.265 also offers improved image quality and supports resolutions up to 8K, compared to the limited support for up to 4K in H.264.

The difference in compression methods between H.264 and H.265 contributes to the higher compression efficiency of H.265. H.265 achieves higher compression by efficiently transmitting differential data. Unlike H.264, which blocks even slightly changing parts of an image in detail, H.265 combines larger blocks for areas with minimal changes. H.265 can dynamically adjust the block size based on the degree of change in the video, allowing for fewer blocks to be used compared to H.264. Reducing the number of blocks ultimately reduces the data size of the video.

How to play H264

To play H.264 compressed video files, you need to process the compressed data in order to play it back. Using a player that supports H.264 playback will automatically handle the file playback. However, H.264 requires high processing power as it needs to process and display the compressed data simultaneously. While most multimedia players can play H.264, lower-performance players may struggle to play it smoothly and may require significant CPU resources. In such cases, the solution would be to use a more powerful player for playback.

One recommended software that allows comfortable playback of H.264 videos is PlayerFab Free Video Player. With this software, you can play a wide range of video and audio files for free. It supports a multitude of file types, including thousands of video and audio files. It not only supports H.264 but also H.265.

Download this completely free video player, and you can manage a large collection of video files stored on your computer. PlayerFab Free Video Player includes a library feature, enabling efficient and easy organization of multiple video files. The library screen displays a simple yet fashionable poster wall, and clicking on a poster allows you to view detailed information about the video data.

Furthermore, the software includes a feature that automatically scrapes and downloads poster files, making video management easier without the need for manual effort. It allows you to manage various types of videos, including recorded TV shows and movies.

How to convert H264 to MP4

To convert H.264 to MP4, you can use specialized video conversion software. One recommended option is UniFab Video Converter Pro

With UniFab Video Converter Pro, you can easily convert videos to over 1000 different video and audio formats, including MP4. It offers lossless conversion profiles to maintain high video quality. It also provides advanced customization options, allowing you to specify file size, format, and even adjust frame rate. You can trim, crop, rotate, adjust brightness and saturation, add watermarks or subtitles, and more.

One of the reasons this software is recommended is its fast conversion speed. UniFab Video Converter Pro utilizes the latest GPU acceleration technology, enabling up to 50 times faster conversion. You can also convert multiple video files simultaneously using the batch conversion feature, saving you time.

To convert H.264 to MP4 using UniFab Video Converter Pro, follow these steps:

  1. Launch UniFab and select “Converter” from the top menu.
  2. Add your H.264 video file.
  3. In the output settings, choose “Other Profiles” > “Format” > “Video” > check “H.265” > select “MP4.H265.10bit” option.
  4. Customize subtitles, audio, and size settings, and perform advanced video editing if desired.
  5. Choose the output destination and click the “Start” button to begin the conversion process. Wait for it to complete.

You can try out all of UniFab’s features, including Video Converter, with a 30-day free trial. Simply click the button to download and install UniFab for free.


H.264 is a widely used video compression standard that serves various purposes. It is commonly employed on the internet and is also well-suited for smartphones. For smooth playback of H.264 videos, it is advisable to choose a suitable player. One recommended player for H.264 playback is PlayerFab Free Video Player. Similarly, when converting H.264 to MP4, using dedicated software can be convenient. UniFab Video Converter Pro is a recommended option for this purpose.


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