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How to Encode HEVC: Handbrake Settings to Use


HandBrake added the support for new H.265 encoder, together with VP8 and Intel QuickSync Video. Up to the latest version 1.0.3, HandBrake has updated x265 to 1.4 with better performance and fewer bugs. Since most non-experts are confused about HandBrake x265 profile, the article is in the purpose of illustrating the best HandBrake x265 settings in detail.

Note: To make the best HandBrake x265 advanced settings for converting 4K UHD or full HD videos, you need to make sure that you've downloaded and installed HandBrake 1.0.0 or above.

Encode HEVC With Handbrake

Step 1: Launch HandBrake, input the file you want to be transcoded by clicking the large Source button and then File (clicking Folder allows you to easily set up batch encodes). Then set a destination by browsing to whatever folder you desire.


Step 2: You’ll want to change the video codec under the Video tab from H.264 to H.265 (x265).

 Also, change the container from MP4 to MKV so that you can embed subtitles if you want to.


Step 3: Head to the Picture tab, and set Anamorphic mode to strict. Also check to make sure the automatic cropping feature has detected the correct settings.

Sometimes it will erroneously crop out a few pixels on any side, but you can address this by switching to custom with 0 set in every location box. If, however, you have a 21:9 video encoded in 16:9, the cropping feature will automatically crop out the black bars at the top and bottom.


Step 4: In the Filters tab, you’ll only want to modify these settings where necessary, leaving everything else ‘off’.

If a TV show is interlaced, for example, it’s a good idea to set Decomb to Fast as this will only deinterlace frames that are visibly interlaced. If you want to remove noise or grain from a source, setting Denoise to hqdn3d with a custom preset of 1:1:4:4 is a solid choice.


Step 5: In the Video tab you’ll want to select some specific settings

  Make sure framerate is set to ‘same as source’ and that the ‘Use advanced video tab instead’ box is unchecked.

Then, select an x265 preset of Medium by adjusting the slider down from the default Ultrafast setting.

  Setting it higher will result in a larger file and faster encodes, and setting lower will reduce the file size at the expense of significant longer encode times.


Step 6: In the Audio tab, change the codec to HE-AAC (FDK), the bitrate to 256, and the mixdown to 5.1 channels.

If your source has only 2.0 channel audio, leaving the setting on 5.1 will still encode only 2.0 audio; in other words, it won’t transform a stereo source into surround sound using any filters or magic. Here you might want to play with bitrates to whatever you desire, although I think 256 delivers great quality for TV show audio.


  Pass through any subtitles from your source by heading to the Subtitle tab, clicking Add Track, then selecting Add All Remaining Tracks. From here you can also “burn in” subtitles, which codes the text into the video stream so you can see the subtitles on video players that don’t support in-file subtitles (though you can’t turn off the subtitles). Setting subtitles to “forced only” tells a video player to display subtitles even when the audio track matches your set language: this is useful for displaying a subtitles when dialogue isn’t in English; for example, during alien conversations in a sci-fi film.

  Save these settings as a preset so you can revisit them easily in the future.


Step 7: Now you should be all good to go.

Click Start and let the encode happen, which may take a considerable amount of time depending on your hardware.

After the encode is done, text saying ‘finished’ will appear in the bottom left corner.


Read More:

HEVC/H.265 - Hardware/Software/Boxes and Console Support - In this article, we show you why H.265 is better than H.264 as well as H.265 Hardware Support, H.265 Software Support, H.265 Streaming Boxes and Console Support, enable you watch HEVC videos with all your portabel devices and media players.

From Handbrake Supported Input and Output File Formats, we know that it still unsupport of Blu-ray disc and protected DVD disc, if you want to backup your Blu-ray and DVD movies from physical disc with HEVC codec for watching on your portable devices, Brorsoft Video Converter Ultimate / iMedia Converter for Mac should take into your consideration, all commercial protected Blu-ray and DVD movies can be ripped to H.265 codec videos as well as nearly all popular video and audio formats like MP4, MOV, MKV, AVI, AAC, MP3 as you need for playback on different devices, such as AndroidiPhone(7), HDTV, etc.

In addition, taking advantage of the  NVIDIA® CUDA and AMD technologies acceleration technologies, the conversion speed is increased up to 6 times faster than ever before.

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