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AMV video origin and history

Little is known about the history of the AMV file format other than it is used by Chinese-made portable MP3 players and has supposedly been created to allow video playback capabilities on inexpensive and low end equipment without increasing the cost of those players with the license royalties and more processor power needed for other more complex format/codec pairs.

AMV Video File Format

AMV files are a variant of AVI with the strings "AVI" and "avih" in the header replaced with "AMV" and "amvh". The avi header contains several 'garbage' values as many of the parameters are hardcoded. It contains a RIFF packed stream of video and audio.

The video codec is a version of Motion JPEG with fixed quantization tables (taken from jpeg standard). Audio is a variant of IMA ADPCM where the first 8 bytes of each frame are:

  • origin (16bits)
  • index (16bits)
  • audio frame length (32bits).

AMV and MTV encoding/transcoding information and utilities

External Links