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django-video-encoding helps to convert your videos into different formats and resolutions.


  1. Install django-video-encoding

    pip install django-video-encoding
  2. Add video_encoding to your INSTALLED_APPS.


Add a VideoField and a GenericRelation(Format) to your model. You can optionally store the width, height and duration of the video by supplying the corresponding field names to the VideoField.

from django.contrib.contenttypes.fields import GenericRelation
from django.db import models
from video_encoding.fields import VideoField
from video_encoding.models import Format

class Video(models.Model):
   width = models.PositiveIntegerField(editable=False, null=True)
   height = models.PositiveIntegerField(editable=False, null=True)
   duration = models.FloatField(editable=False, null=True)

   file = VideoField(width_field='width', height_field='height',

   format_set = GenericRelation(Format)

To show all converted videos in the admin, you should add the FormatInline to your ModelAdmin

from django.contrib import admin
from video_encoding.admin import FormatInline

from .models import Video

class VideoAdmin(admin.ModelAdmin):
   inlines = (FormatInline,)

   list_dispaly = ('get_filename', 'width', 'height', 'duration')
   fields = ('file', 'width', 'height', 'duration')
   readonly_fields = fields

The conversion of the video should be done in a separate process. Typical options are django-rq or celery. We will use django-rq in the following example. The configuration for celery is similar. django-video-encoding already provides a task (convert_all_videos) for converting all videos on a model. This task should be triggered when a video was uploaded. Hence we listen to the post-save signal and enqueue the saved instance for processing.

from django.db.models.signals import post_save
from django.dispatch import receiver
from django_rq import enqueue

from video_encoding import tasks

from .models import Video

@receiver(post_save, sender=Video)
def convert_video(sender, instance, **kwargs):

After a while You can access the converted videos using

video = Video.objects.get(...)
for format in video.format_set.complete().all():
   # do something


VIDEO_ENCODING_THREADS (default: 1) Defines how many threads should be used for encoding. This may not be supported by every backend.

VIDEO_ENCODING_BACKEND (default: 'video_encoding.backends.ffmpeg.FFmpegBackend') Choose the backend for encoding. django-video-encoding only supports ffmpeg, but you can implement your own backend. Feel free to pulish your plugin and submit a pull request.

VIDEO_ENCODING_BACKEND_PARAMS (default: {}) If your backend requires some special configuration, you can specify them here as dict.

VIDEO_ENCODING_FORMATS (for defaults see video_encoding/ This dictionary defines all required encodings and has some resonable defaults. If you want to customize the formats, you have to specify name, extension and params for each format. For example

    'FFmpeg': [
            'name': 'webm_sd',
            'extension': 'webm',
            'params': [
                '-b:v', '1000k', '-maxrate', '1000k', '-bufsize', '2000k',
                '-codec:v', 'libvpx', '-r', '30',
                '-vf', 'scale=-1:480', '-qmin', '10', '-qmax', '42',
                '-codec:a', 'libvorbis', '-b:a', '128k', '-f', 'webm',

Encoding Backends

video_encoding.backends.ffmpeg.FFmpegBackend (default)

Backend for using ffmpeg and ffprobe to convert your videos.


VIDEO_ENCODING_FFMPEG_PATH Path to ffmpeg. If no path is provided, the backend uses which to locate it. VIDEO_ENCODING_FFPROBE_PATH Path to ffprobe. If no path is provided, the backend uses which to locate it.

Custom Backend

You can implement a custom encoding backend. Create a new class which inherits from video_encoding.backends.base.BaseEncodingBackend. You must set the property name and implement the methods encode, get_media_info and get_thumbnail. For further details see the reference implementation: video_encoding.backends.ffmpeg.FFmpegBackend.

If you want to open source your backend, follow these steps.

  1. create a packages named django-video-encoding-BACKENDNAME
  2. publish your package to pypi
  3. Submit a pull requests with the following changes:
    • add the package to extra_requires
    • provide reasonable defaults for VIDEO_ENCODING_FORMATS


This project is using poetry to manage all dev dependencies. Clone this repository and run

poetry develop

to create a virtual enviroment with all dependencies. You can now run the test suite using

poetry run pytest
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