Microsoft Expression Encoder

Microsoft Expression Encoder
Microsoft Expression Encoder
Microsoft Expression Encoder 4.png
Microsoft Expression Encoder Screenshot.png
Microsoft Expression Encoder 4 on Windows 7
Developer(s) Microsoft
Stable release 4 (4.0.1639.0) / June 8, 2010
Operating system Microsoft Windows
License Proprietary software
Website Homepage

Microsoft Expression Encoder[1] (formerly Expression Media Encoder) is a Windows-based program for encoding digital video for web-based video. Expression Encoder can be used to create video compressed VC-1 as well as H.264 for distribution via Microsoft Silverlight. Expression Encoder features a WPF-based modern graphical user interface as well as a command line interface. It supports Silverlight player controls and Silverlight templates.

Microsoft Expression Encoder is available in different editions: Pro edition available at retail, which is the full-featured commercial incarnation of the product, Pro edition without royalty-incurring codecs for MSDN and DreamSpark subscriptions and Express edition, which is a free of charge but feature-limited version.[2]

According to Microsoft, Expression Encoder 2 was not a replacement for Windows Media Encoder, despite having many similarities.[3] As of December 2010 Windows Media Encoder is no longer available from Microsoft, and has been replaced by Expression Encoder 4, available in a stripped-down free version and a Pro version; more advanced Expression Studio versions are also available[4].



Version 1.0 was released to manufacturing on September 6, 2007. A beta of version 2.0 was released in March 2008 which includes new VC-1 codecs (Advanced, Main, and Simple profiles) and better Silverlight support, and the final version 2.0 in May 2008. Expression Encoder 2 Service Pack 1 added H.264+AAC encoding support for devices. Expression Encoder 3 added multi-channel audio output, more built in device profiles, like support for Zune HD, Xbox 360 and iPod Touch, as well as profiles for online services such as Facebook and Youtube. It also added Expression Encoder 3 Screen Capture, which allows users to create video screen captures. Version 4 added IIS live smooth streaming, screen capture improvements and an H.264 encoder based on the MainConcept SDK. [5] Expression Encoder 4.0 SP1 was released in January 2011 and added CUDA-enabled GPU-assisted encoding, HE-AAC, screen captures as a live source, live broadcasting templates, Selective Blend de-interlacing and other features. [6]


Some of Microsoft Expression Encoder features include:

  • Smart encoding/smart recompression for WMV if the source is also WMV and no frame operations are performed,[7] cuts editing, serial batch encoding, Live encoding from webcams and DV camcorders
  • Decoding/import format support because of DirectShow
  • Smooth streaming (720p+ video using HTTP) with optimized client (Silverlight) and server (IIS with smooth streaming)
  • WebDAV publishing, publishing plugins for Silverlight Streaming, Amazon S3
  • Importing XAML overlays created in Expression Design and customizing their timing, animation, opacity, placement and looping
  • JavaScript trigger events
  • Windows Media 11 SDK and VC-1 SDK integration, native MPEG-2 decoder
  • Adding captions to videos using SAMI or W3C Timed Text format
  • Previewing and comparing encoding settings in real time
  • Screen capture
  • Object model for the encoding engine, SDK downloadable separately


The version of Expression Encoder Pro available as part of Expression Studio in programs like DreamSpark, BizSpark, WebsiteSpark and through MSDN Ultimate does not include royalty incurring codec and standards support for exporting in MP4 format (H.264 video and AAC audio).[8] It also does not include import filters for TS, M2TS, AVCHD, MPEG-2, and AC-3 although if third party DirectShow filters are installed, it is able to import these formats as is the free version.[8] Expression Encoder Pro version available in retail does not have these limitations. The free version available to everyone and included in MSDN Premium lacks IIS Live Smooth Streaming and unlimited screen capture.[9] Expression Encoder also cannot encode to older WMV versions, such as WMV 7 or 8; for these formats Windows Media Encoder or a third-party application must be used.[10]

See also


  1. ^ "Microsoft Expression Encoder Homepage". Microsoft web site. Microsoft Corporation. Retrieved June 27, 2009. 
  2. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions". Microsoft Expression Encoder 2. Microsoft Corporation. Retrieved June 27, 2009. "Q. What is Expression Encoder 2 Service Pack 1 Express? A. The Express version of Expression Encoder 2 Service Pack 1 is a free feature-limited version." 
  3. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions". Microsoft Expression Encoder 2. Microsoft Corporation. Retrieved June 27, 2009. "Q. Does Expression Encoder replace Windows Encoder? A. The two products serve different purposes. Windows Media Encoder continues to be a freely available solution for encoding video for live and on-demand scenarios. Expression Encoder 2 is purpose built to enable you to produce rich interactive Silverlight Media Experiences. Expression Encoder 2 also uses the newest VC-1 SDK for better Windows Media quality and faster encoding that the previous technology used by the Windows Media Encoder." 
  4. ^ Comparison of Window Media Encoder, Expression Encoder 4 (free), and Expression Encoder 4 Pro
  5. ^ Expression Studio 4 launch–Blend, Web, Encoder, Design
  6. ^ Expression Encoder 4 SP1 released!
  7. ^ Microsoft Expression Encoder 3 FAQ
  8. ^ a b "Expression Encoder 4 Information". 
  9. ^ "Expression Encoder 4: Compare features". 
  10. ^ "How to Encode files to WMV 8 using Expression Encoder 3 ?". 

External links

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