What Is FFmpeg ? Working Of FFmpeg ? FFmpeg download ? FFmpeg GUI ?

what is ffmpeg


In Streaming Media industry there are various tools available for Editing, Transcoding and Broadcasting of audio video content. Which are also available with players and monitoring tools for your streams. Generally known as Stream Analyzer.

So in this article we will cover What Is FFmpeg ? , Working Of It ? and What Are FFmpeg Tools ?

What Is FFmpeg ?


FFmpeg is a Multimedia Framework where FF represents Fast Forward.  You can see in its logo there is a zigzag pattern. This zigzag pattern represents handling of Entropy Encoding by MPEG Video Codecs..

FFmpeg is a Open Source Software use to perform the tasks of Encoding, Decoding, Transcoding, Multiplexing, De-multiplexing, Streaming and Filtering. All of these tasks are performed on Video, Audio and images too accordingly.

It supports the various codecs which were developed in last 2 decades. It is available on various platforms like Windows, MAC OS X and Linux.

FFmpeg is also used for broadcasting a live stream video.

What Are FFmpeg Tools ?

There are basically three tools provided by FFmpeg organization mentioned below,

(1) FFmpeg Tool

(2) FFplay Tool

(3) FFprob Tool


FFmpeg Tool is a Command Line Tool. This is the main tool used to convert the codecs from one file format to another file format.

FFplay Tool is the player for palying the files. It uses all the libraries available in the FFplay Tool.

FFprob Tool is used to analyze the streams. It is called as FFprob Stream Analyzer.

What Is FFmpeg GUI ?

ffmpeg gui graphical user interface

The command we used in this screen shot is,

ffmpeg -i bkn.mpg new.avi

There is no any Graphical User Interface of FFmpeg. Because it is Command Line Tool. So we need to remember the commands used in this framework.

as shown above in the figure we are converting a bkn.mpg file into the new.avi . It is done to convert the .mpg codec file into the .avi codec file.. The command for this is mentioned in screen shot.

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What Are FFmpeg Libraries ?

There are 7 libraries in FFmpeg mentioned below,

(1) LibavDevice

(2) LibavCodec

(3) LibavFormat

(4) LibavSample

(5) LibavScale

(6) LibavFilter

(7) LibavUtil


(1) LibavDevice

This library contains the input and output devices, it used to grab and render to many software.

(2) LibavCodec

It contains the encoder as well decoder for codec.

(3) LibavFormat

It contains Multiplexer and demultiplexer for different formats.

(4) LibavSample

This library is responsible for audio resampling and rematrixing.

(5) LibavScale

This library is used for scaling purpose. Where pixels of the images are considered for optimization.

(6) LibavFilter

This library contains the multimedia filters.

(7) LibavUtil

This library is used to make programming easy by performing various functions.

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Working Of FFmpeg ?

ffmpeg wprling

As shown above in the figure working of FF-mpeg is divided into the 5 steps mentioned below,

(1) Demultiplexer

(2) Decoder

(3) Filter

(4) Encoder

(5) Multiplexer


(1) De-multiplexer

First of all in this step Iibavcodec Library is called to read the input file. Which demultiplex the input file and provides the packets of encoded data.

(2) Decoder

These encoded data packets works as a input for decoder. Which decode the data and provide us decoded data frames. These frames are uncompressed.

(3) Filter

This en-compress data goes for filtration process which is performed by libavfilter Library.  Now this data passes from various chain of filters. Where a graph is produced. This graph is known as filter graph.

So there are two types of Filter graphs known as Simple Filtergraph and Complex Filtergraph.

Simple filtergraphs provides the one output stream for one input stream. While complex filtergraphs are that which have different output for input or one or more than one input and one or more than one output.

Then the output goes into the encoder.

(4) Encoder

In this process encoding of data is done which comes from filter. Then send it to Mux.

(5) Multiplexer

In this process encoded data packets are received and then multiplexed to provide output file.

Conclusion Of FFmpeg

FFmpeg is the core and powerful tool for encoding, decoding and transcoding the multimedia files. Where multimedia files can be Audio, Video and Images too.

It is free to use software easily available online to download and install. There are various simple commands which we need to follow to use this tool in command prompt. Because this tool is not having any GUI or Graphical User Interface.

Suggested Articles

What Is HEVC Codec ?

What Is AVC Codec ?

What Is AV1 ?

reference : ffmpeg

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