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0.3.0 • Public • Published

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The fastest and safest AV1 encoder.


rav1e is an AV1 video encoder. It is designed to eventually cover all use cases, though in its current form it is most suitable for cases where libaom (the reference encoder) is too slow.


  • Intra, inter, and switch frames
  • 64x64 superblocks
  • 4x4 to 64x64 RDO-selected square and 2:1/1:2 rectangular blocks
  • DC, H, V, Paeth, smooth, and all directional prediction modes
  • DCT, (FLIP-)ADST and identity transforms (up to 64x64, 16x16 and 32x32 respectively)
  • 8-, 10- and 12-bit depth color
  • 4:2:0 (full support), 4:2:2 and 4:4:4 (limited) chroma sampling
  • 11 speed settings (0-10)
  • Near real-time encoding at high speed levels
  • Constant quantizer and target bitrate (single- and multi-pass) encoding modes
  • Still picture mode


For the foreseeable future, a weekly pre-release of rav1e will be published every Tuesday.

Windows builds

Automated AppVeyor builds can be found here. Click on a build (it is recommended you select a build based on "master"), then click ARTIFACTS to reveal the rav1e.exe download link.



Some x86_64-specific optimizations require a recent version of NASM and are enabled by default.

Install nasm

ubuntu 20.04

sudo apt install nasm

ubuntu 18.04

sudo apt install nasm-mozilla
# link nasm into $PATH 
sudo ln /usr/lib/nasm-mozilla/bin/nasm /usr/local/bin/

fedora 31, 32

sudo dnf install nasm

Have a NASM binary in your system PATH.

release binary

To build release binary in target/release/rav1e run:

cargo build --release

Unstable features

Experimental API and Features can be enabled by using the unstable feature.

cargo build --features unstable

Those Features and API are bound to change and evolve, do not rely on them staying the same over releases.

Target-specific builds

The rust autovectorizer can produce a binary that is about 6%-7% faster if it can use avx2 in the general code, you may allow it by issuing:

RUSTFLAGS="-C target-cpu=native" cargo build --release


RUSTFLAGS="-C target-feature=+avx2,+fma" cargo build --release

The resulting binary will not work on cpus that do not sport the same set of SIMD extensions enabled.

Building the C-API

rav1e provides a C-compatible set of library, header and pkg-config file.

To build and install it you can use cargo-c:

cargo install cargo-c
cargo cinstall --release

Compressing video

Input videos must be in y4m format. The monochrome color format is not supported.

cargo run --release --bin rav1e -- input.y4m -o output.ivf

Decompressing video

Encoder output should be compatible with any AV1 decoder compliant with the v1.0.0 specification. You can build compatible aomdec using the following:

mkdir aom_test
cd aom_test
make -j8
./aomdec ../output.ivf -o output.y4m


rav1e has several optional features that can be enabled by passing --features to cargo test. Passing --all-features is discouraged.

  • asm - enabled by default. When enabled, assembly is built for the platforms supporting it.
    • It requires nasm on x86_64.
    • It requires gas on aarch64.

NOTE: SSE2 is always enabled on x86_64, neon is always enabled for aarch64, you may set the environment variable RAV1E_CPU_TARGET to rust to disable all the assembly-optimized routines at the runtime.

Using the AOMAnalyzer

Local Analyzer

  1. Download the AOM Analyzer.
  2. Download inspect.js and inspect.wasm and save them in the same directory.
  3. Run the analyzer: AOMAnalyzer path_to_inspect.js output.ivf

Online Analyzer

If your .ivf file is hosted somewhere (and CORS is enabled on your web server) you can use:



The File Structure and design of the encoder is explained more in the Structure document.


Please read our guide to contributing to rav1e.

Getting in Touch

Come chat with us on the IRC channel #daala on Freenode! If you don't have IRC set up you can easily connect from your web browser.




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