Houdini 18.0 Nodes TOP nodes

FFmpeg Encode Video TOP node

Encodes a sequence of still images as a video file.

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The opposite operation (extract frame images from a video) is in the FFmpeg extract images node.


This node is a wrapper around the ffmpeg command line tool. You must have FFmpeg installed on each machine for this node to work.

  • You can specify an explicit path to the executable using the node’s

  • If the FFmpeg path parameter is blank, the node looks for the environment variable PDG_FFMPEG, which if defined should contain a path to the executable.

  • If the PDG_FFMPEG variable is not defined, the node will assume the executable is in the system path.

TOP Attributes



Indicates the ffmpeg operation ("encode").



Whether the user specified a custom ffmpeg executable path. If this is 1, the work script should use the executable path in the ffmpegbin attribute.



The path to the ffmpeg executable, if overridebin is 1.



The playback speed of the output video in frames per second.



The file path of the text file that contains the list of input frame images.



The file path of the output video file.



When this is 1, the work script will run the custom command line in expr.



A custom command line to run, when customcommand is 1.



The file tag to put on the result file path.



List of file paths to the frame images.



Frames Per Second

The playback speed of the output video.

Frame List File

The file path to the frame list file. The frame list file is a text file that contains an ordered list of all of the input images to FFmpeg that are used to construct the video.

It is a requirement of FFmpeg that the paths of the images in this file are specified as relative paths. Therefore, when running on Windows, the frame list file must be placed on the same drive as the input images.

Output Filename

The file path to write the output video to.

Output File Tag

The file tag to put on the output file path. The default is file/video.

FFmpeg Command

Turn this on to customize the command line passed to ffmpeg.

FFmpeg Path

Turn this on to set an explicit path to the ffmpeg executable. If this is off, the node will look for a PDG_FFMPEG environment variable. If the variable is not set, the node will simply assume the executable is on the system path.


Work Item Generation

Whether this node generates static or dynamic work items. You should generally leave this set to "Automatic" unless you know the node’s work items can be computed statically, or that they need to be generated dynamically.


This node always creates dynamic work items: it waits until the upstream work items are known, and generates new work items from the upstream work items.


This node always creates static work items: it creates the number of work items it thinks it needs based on the parameters (and any upstream static items) before the network runs.


If the input is static (a static processor, or a partitioner with only static inputs, or a mapper), this node generates static work items, otherwise it generates dynamic work items.


TOP Scheduler Override

This parameter overrides the TOP scheduler for this node.

Work Item Priority

This parameter determines how the current scheduler prioritizes the work items in this node.

Inherit From Upstream Item

The work items inherit their priority from their parent items. If a work item has no parent, its priority is set to 0.

Custom Expression

The work item priority is set to the value of Priority Expression.

Node Defines Priority

The work item priority is set based on the node’s own internal priority calculations.

This option is only available on the Python Processor TOP, ROP Fetch TOP, and ROP Output TOP nodes. These nodes define their own prioritization schemes that are implemented in their node logic.

Priority Expression

This parameter is only available when Work Item Priority is set to Custom Expression.

This parameter specifies an expression for work item priority. The expression is evaluated for each work item in the node.


example_top_ffmpegencodevideo Example for FFmpeg Encode Video TOP node

This example demonstrates how to use FFmpeg Encode Video node to encode a sequence of images into a video file.

See also

TOP nodes