unofficial abma/aba faq
Annotated :: Single Page/Plain :: Text :: Notes

1. Preface
2. Introduction
3. Newsgroups
4. Encoding
     a. uu
     b. mime
     c. yEnc
5. Archives
     a. .rar/.r##/.part##.rar
     b. RAR recovery
     c. .ace/.c##
     d. .###
     e. .zip
6. Support Files
     a. .sfv
     b. .par/.p##
     c. .rev
     d. .idx/.sub/.ifo
     e. .smi/.ssa/.srt
     f. .nfo/.txt/.md5
7. Newsreaders
8. Posting
     a. Bad Requests
9. Auto-Posters
10. Hentai
11. Formats/codecs
     a. avi/ogm
     b. mpeg4
     c. mpg
     d. rm
     e. audio
     f. linux
12. News servers
13. Software
14. Appendices
     a. About the FAQ
     b. Mirroring the FAQ

The new home of the FAQ is http://animeusenet.org/wiki/.

This site exists only for historical/archival purposes.

11d. RealMedia

RealMedia (.RM) Format [Keikai, Jonah]

The official RealMedia site is http://www.real.com. RealPlayer, the primary media player for RealMedia files, is available for free.

RealMedia provides excellent multimedia compression. It is especially good at low bitrate and low resolution encodes. Its advantages diminish with higher bitrates and resolutions, and therefore, this format has fallen into disfavor in AB(M)A.

The primary disadvantage to the RealMedia format, however, is that it is a "dead-end format". There is no direct method of converting RealMedia files into other formats.

Another significant disadvantage is that RealPlayer is required to be installed on systems in order to play this format. While RealPlayer in some form or another is available for most common operating systems, it is known to occasionally cause system-wide compatibility problems.

Because of the proprietary nature of RealMedia (.RM) files, creating new encodes in this format is strongly discouraged.

Information on Linux/*NIX-specific versions can be found at http://forms.real.com/real/player/unix/unix.html.

RealText section [Moomoo, ed.]

RealText is a simple way of subtitling RealMedia files. Instead of adding subtitles directly to the video, however, RealText subs are played in a separate panel at the same time as the video.

A posting of RealText subtitleded video would consist of 3 files:

  • Multimedia file (.rm extension)
  • RealText subtitles file (.rt extension)
  • Synchronization file (.smil extension)

To watch a RealText subbed anime, open the .smil file using RealPlayer instead of the .rm file

In order to write subtitles in the RealText format, there is a good explanation and a tutorial at http://www.lunaarts.com/realtext/index.html.


Of all the popular formats, .rm gives the best compression for the same length of video. There had been people who complained about lack of quality of this format in comparison with others, however, in the hands of a capable encoder with a good machine, .rm can be very good. Also, there are good reasons for using .rm:

  1. Not everyone has a high-speed connection, even cable is slow with the u/l caps on @home. That makes posting large files nearly impossible. Also people with slow connection will have a better chance of getting the smaller .rm files.
  2. Diskspace-- not everyone has a 20gb drive. I like to collect enough files of the same series before burning a CD. With incomplete posts, broken files that are the daily realities of Usenet, having a gazillion incomplete episodes on my harddrive would take out a lot of space.

Also, even if every posts are perfect, a considerable of blank cds will be needed. For instance, the Nadesico series has 26 episodes (standard length for most anime series), it fits on 2 cdrs when in .rm format. If it were in something like mpg it'd take maybe 8-9 cdr's. Now multiply that with the number of series that's been posted in the past, the number of series that's currently being posted... That's a lot more cdr's to buy. .Rm is a nice compromise between file size and quality.