We all know that the default "AMV Converter" tool doesn't do such a great job. That's why we usually pre-process the videos, applying our own filters (resize, sharpen, crop, volume, noise reduction, etc), and then we convert it.
But there's a better way to do this: since AMV Converter (AMVC) is DirectShow-based, you can take advantage of that, and apply your filters on-the-fly (while converting), reducing the conversion time 2:1.
The best filter for doing this is ffdshow (ffdshow-tryout.sourceforge.net): not only it has all the filters you need, but it also can decode most common formats, without the need of additional codecs (or even those horrible "codec packs").
Here are the ones I used, when I had an AMV-based MP4 player; I guess they're good for everyone:
- resize (its routines have much better quality than AMVC's).
- sharpen (for compensating the blurriness added by "resize").
- crop (in case you're trying to fit widescreen videos in your regular MP4 screen).
- deinterlacing (if needed).
- postprocessing (although it isn't always useful for tiny resolutions).
- picture properties (useful for raising contrast, saturation, brightness, etc).
- subtitles (in case you need to embed them).
- volume (you could need to maximize it, in order to hear well in crowded places).
- FIR filter (great for reducing the noise added by volume maximization).
Well that's pretty much it; I hope you guys find it useful...