Thursday, September 25, 2014

The super benchmark: WinRAR VS 7-Zip

**UPDATE - October 4 2016**

Here is the latest WinRAR vs 7-Zip benchmark: http://hctechbyte.blogspot.com/2016/06/the-super-benchmark-winrar-531-vs-7-zip.html

Hello! In a debate on one of the two eternal wars (other being Firefox VS Chrome), I sort-of jump in through my blog to conclude which is the better of the two. This is a cauldron, as always, and does not cool down. So here I am with my comprehensive benchmark, which I did in a "test.txt". So I will copy all the Notepad text from there to show you the results.

winrar vs 7zip benchmark

But before that, two things.

One, the best archiver on the basis of feature set, supported by SqueezeChart 2014 benchmark was
concluded by me for Windows, Mac, Linux and Android on my other article. Here is the link: http://hctechbyte.wordpress.com/2014/08/09/the-best-file-archiver-for-windows-unix-linux-mac-and-android/

Two, WinRAR with 1 GB dict size usage requires only 3 GB RAM. But 7-Zip requires 11 GB RAM for 1 GB dict size, which one rarely has in his PC or laptop. So WinRAR is better for common PCs.

My benchmark is here, below this line.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
System Specs

Windows 7 Home Premium (OS also makes some difference in terms of optimisation of system resources)
Core i3-2120 3.3 GHz
4 GB DDR3 RAM
1 GB AMD Radeon HD 6450 gfx card
Seagate 1 TB HDD @ 7200 rpm

Datasets

MVSC (contains Cadillacs n Dinosaurs, Marvel Superheroes VS Street Fighter,
Marvel VS Capcom, Street Fighter Alpha 2, X-Men VS Street Fighter ROMs
and Final Burn Alpha 0.2.97.05 emulator) 119 MB

NFS Most Wanted installed game folder 2.83 GB

Oni installed game folder 1.01 GB

Dict size used
RAR5 128 MB
RAR 4 MB
7Z 64 MB (Best)
7Z 32 MB (Max)
7Z 16 MB (Normal)
7Z 1 MB (Fast)

Throughout, for 7Z, LZMA2 algorithm was used.
In each case Solid compression was used.

Note: In RAR and RAR5, Best and good were almost equivalent in size and time and
hardly made difference in memory usage,
which was doubling time to benchmark so to avoid time wastage, "good" was excluded.
Proof: you can see from the results.

Note: no test was done twice, as others say to remove hdd bottleneck.
This is a real-world performance test, and as expected, no one would compress a file
twice to ensure removal of bottlenecks as it will take nearly double the time to do such a task practically.

NOTE: NO OTHER PROCESS WAS RUNNING WHILE COMPRESSING WAS GOING ON.

Time is in seconds throughout.

Tests

Folder Format Mode CompressTime ArchiveSize

MVSC 7Z Ultra 32.6 110 MB
MVSC 7Z Max 24.3 110 MB
MVSC 7Z Normal 18.4 110 MB
MVSC 7Z Fast 13 111 MB

MVSC RAR Best 12 111 MB
MVSC RAR Normal 13 111 MB
MVSC RAR Fast 12 111 MB
MVSC RAR Fastest 4.8 112 MB

MVSC RAR5 Best 23 111 MB
MVSC RAR5 Normal 31 111 MB
MVSC RAR5 Fast 21 111 MB
MVSC RAR5 Fastest 3 111 MB

NFS MW 7Z Ultra 657 1.84 GB
NFS MW 7Z Max 616 1.84 GB
NFS MW 7Z Normal 506 1.85 GB
NFS MW 7Z Fast 288 1.96 GB

NFS MW RAR Best 299 1.94 GB
NFS MW RAR Normal 317 1.94 GB
NFS MW RAR Fast 589 1.92 GB
NFS MW RAR Fastest 132 2.03 GB

NFS MW RAR5 Best 739 1.91 GB
NFS MW RAR5 Normal 661 1.91 GB
NFS MW RAR5 Fast 592 1.92 GB
NFS MW RAR5 Fastest 101 2.03 GB

NFS MW TAR+GZ Normal 105+166 2.08 GB *Just to prove how BAD GZip is, because people say GZip is superfast

Oni 7Z Ultra 216 313 MB
Oni 7Z Max 213 383 MB
Oni 7Z Normal 160 423 MB
Oni 7Z Fast 71 500 MB

Oni RAR Best 109 487 MB
Oni RAR Normal 86 482 MB
Oni RAR Fast 75 485 MB
Oni RAR Fastest 40 528 MB

Oni RAR5 Best 145 297 MB
Oni RAR5 Normal 115 298 MB
Oni RAR5 Fast 81 300 MB
Oni RAR5 Fastest 23 519 MB

Extraction

7-Zip and WinRAR mean the time in seconds they took to decompress archives. N/A represents inability to extract archive.

Folder (Format Mode) 7-Zip WinRAR

MVSC - in all cases time varied between 0.7 and 2 secs

NFS MW (7Z Fast) 127 211
NFS MW (RAR5 Best) N/A 76
NFS MW (RAR Best) 93 80

Oni (RAR5 Normal) N/A 0:13
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Conclusion

RAR5 with Fast setting with Solid compression is the best setting for common usage. But when you have to compress 1000's of files, whether big or small, and you may have to extract one of them sometime, uncheck Solid compression (in WinRAR) or select Non-Solid in 7-Zip.

WinRAR is better for daily life usage, even though 7-Zip has better compression (2-3%). But time is money, and 7-Zip wastes that to get smaller archives. WinRAR is efficient enough for daily life usage.

NOTE: If you want to see more efficient archivers than WinRAR, then look at FreeArc and NanoZip.

Hope for comments on this one.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The best AV converter for Windows, Linux and Mac

*UPDATED - September 5 2015*

Hello! I am gonna talk about another not-so-disputed category of software - audio-video converters. This category has some intense competition between few makers. I will talk about that later. And let me tell you - I have reviewed the latest versions of the video converters as soon as they were available. But first let me make it clear what an actual AV converter is.

An AV converter is a tool that converts your videos as fast as possible while not lowering or pixelating your video or audio output in any case. It should have a very simple GUI which even a child can understand. It may also have additional options for tweaking, trimming and light video editing. It should accept any common audio and video format so the user is not forced to download any additional tool or plugin or add-on later on.

My criteria is a tad bit different from other reviewers. This is the prioritised checklist:
  • Extremely large input format support
  • Conversion to MP4, MPG and legacy 3GP video formats
  • Conversion to MP3 and WAV audio formats
  • Easy to use interface (or GUI; technical terms... ugh!)
  • Light video editing and trimming option
  • CD/DVD ripping option

NOTE: There can be adware/spyware in my suggested options since they might be added after the time of reviewing (nothing to do with my review :P).

So let's have a look at the contenders for the title: Freemake, SUPER, Wondershare Video Converter.

NOTE: 3GP is a very important video format since it is the only video format that can run on Java phones (the cheap Nokia feature phones and the like).

So why did I choose these video converters out of the crowd? You will get the point after reading the complete review.

best-video-converters-for-windowsWindows

Freemake Video Converter 4.1.7


It has recently improved its core files to make it more stable. It has recently added support for iPhone 5S and 5C. (Sorry iPhone 6 users!)
It is the simplest of all. So simple even your granny can use it if she knew how to point and move the mouse cursor. It supports almost every format out of the blue. It converts for most mobiles and devices, and also gives you the option to convert into the common video formats.
It also offers light video editing and trimming.

Disadvantage 1: Does not offer intensive control of the conversion process (tweaking every setting? No way!). But that will make it difficult to use. For such control, I recommend SUPER.
Disadvantage 2: It does not convert into WAV audio format. For that I recommend another video converter that can be used as Freemake's sidekick: SUPER.


SUPER 2014 build 65


Why did I choose SUPER, a such underrated and obscure video converter? Not to mention it is bulky (66 MB offline installer).

It is the only video converter that encodes ASF, MOV and WMV into the new standard H.265 (or HEVC codec). (Hell, even the paid ones cannot do this now.) Only MKV and MP4 are supported by others for HEVC encoding.

It is a complete tool for the video studios and video editing pros. If anyone wants to have total control over the conversion process, this is it. Of course, you should have some knowledge of audio and video codecs. Also the bitrates and frequency. And all the gobble-de-geek I don't want to say to humiliate you.

Another sidekick for converting MIDI files: Free MIDI to MP3 Converter.


Free MIDI to MP3 Converter


The name says it all. MIDI files are not supported by any free video converter as inbuilt. So an external app was needed for this job. It is around 7 MBs. Keep this with you if you like. I had to use it once for my mobile ringtones.


OR AN ALL-IN-ONE PAID ALTERNATIVE


wondershare-video-converter




Wondershare Video Converter Ultimate 8.4.0



It is equal to Freemake + SUPER + Free MIDI to MP3 Converter.
It does not include ASF, MOV and WMV conversion into the new H.265 (or HEVC codec).
It does not rip DVDs like Freemake.
It does not have as many codecs as SUPER for both audio and video.


Linux


ff-multi-converter



FF-Multi Converter



It is an audio, video, pictures and documents converter. It should rather be called a universal converter. Best of all, it is free. Though bulky, it converts into more than 110 formats (of course depending on whether input file is a document or video).




Mac

any-video-converter-for-mac



Any Video Converter 7.0.7



It is a good video converter that fits my criteria. MP4 for all Apple devices, 3GP for cheap feature phones and MP3 for songs. Period.

 

Is your favourite app excluded?

This section tells you why your favourite and popular choice was excluded.
HandBrake: Cannot convert to 3GP format (important for little feature phones)
Miro Video Converter: Cannot convert to 3GP format
MacX Quicktime Video Converter: Cannot convert to 3GP format

 

Conclusion

Use the 3 free apps in Windows in conjunction with each other. Only formats excluded are the obscure KAROKE formats and the like. Otherwise you will be able to tackle most audios and videos from the Internet or from your friend. (Maybe even your electronic piano?)

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Why piracy is necessary

Hello! I am going to advocate for a right that is illegal to say the least - piracy. Yes, I am going to do so. I am not going to stay in those diplomatic or a puritan shell where everybody considers you right. I may be wrong, but I can say that that after reading this article, everybody will either whisper secretly in their dorm diplomatic cocoons or come out of their shells and say it loud and clear - "I support piracy."

So, let's start off with a negative note - why piracy should NOT exist: games, movies, songs and softwares can be copied and used for free for which lots of money, time and effort has undergone.
That is just one statement why all these companies like anti-piracy campaigns. These companies support SOPA and PIPA and all the load of shit that has ever come out in the form of bills or white papers or .... or anything.

So, why is piracy a necessary evil?

I will explain you with an example: friction. Okay, anyone who has read any bit of friction (even in the junior classes) has read that friction causes wear and tear of machines. Right? And you could use ball bearings to overcome that. But remember - you can walk on earth only because of friction. Imagine if there were no friction - you couldn't walk to your home toilet to pee. Frightened?

Now I will compare that example exactly with this: piracy causes money losses to companies. It can be overcome by anti-piracy bills and DVD/BluRay/USB encryptions. But remember - you can't copy it to view movies on a smartphone, which does not have a USB port or DVD reader. You can't copy it to preserve it as DVD/BluRay can become useless within 5 years of purchase due to physical scratches or extreme heat exposure.

Today I can attribute the preservation of years old Sega Genesis, SNES, NES, Atari and any other old gaming console cartridges to the pirate guys who ripped the cartridges. The rare ones which haven't been ripped must be ripped to preserve them. Of course, that could mean piracy of even those cartridges. I have a solution to that - but that could mean "PIRACY" because their makers can't make money out of that product anymore. Stop being such cry babies, okay anti-piracy advocates?
Today I can attribute the preservation of old songs and old movies to pirates. Today I can attribute preserved old scanned copies of manuscripts and documents to pirates (and maybe some officials?). Today I can attribute those old historical photos/pics you could show to your child/grandson on your PC or phone to piracy.

All the past that could be preserved somehow has been preserved by pirates. These bills and advocacy are only making it harder to preserve them in digital form.

One more instance: I wanted to watch an Indian movie that was copyrighted and was on an encrypted DVD. My father wanted to watch it on my PC. But I had to publish this article since it had been 10 days since I published an article (my frequency is an article every 7 days). So I used the great, powerful Freemake to rip that darn encrypted DVD. It took around 50 minutes to rip that DVD, but now I can simply copy the AVI file on a microSD card or a USB to watch it on a smartphone or tablet.

That is a real example, as a person on Earth (and not Utopia) can identify well with that situation.

I will use a video here. Credits to Question Copyright.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IeTybKL1pM4

Request you strongly to go to this page: http://theoatmeal.com/comics/game_of_thrones

I will use some pictures. Credits to the links are below each image.











I want to leave you with one last question: if you were in their place, would you stop making money out of a movie, song or software after... let's say three years?

If no, then you are pretty much like other companies (Sony, Norton, Microsoft etc.) who don't drop off the anti-piracy tag even after years when they don't make that song "LEGALLY" available to you. Don't support piracy.

If yes, then you have made 99% of the money you could ever and that 1% of making money could sting the civilians and people to being supportive for anti-anti-piracy = PIRACY.