Are you one of the lucky Android fans to already have a Nexus 4 in your hands, instead of being stuck with some month-long backorder? If you’re already enjoying your new phone, but are less than completely enamored with the video quality it’s been outputting, there’s one easy tweak you can try to get things looking a tad crisper, with a little file editing to overdrive the phone’s default 1080p video bitrate.
The steps to make the change are super simple. Android stores the camera’s settings in plaintext in the phone’s media_profiles.xml in its /system/etc directory, and there’s only one value you need to change. Under the profile entry for 1080p recording, the bitrate should be set to 12000000. That means that, by default, the camera records 1080p video at 12Mbps. Changing that number to something like 20000000, corresponding to a 20Mbps bitrate, should produce a noticeable increase in quality, with fewer compression artifacts.
If you’re planning to output your video for display on a big HDTV, this sounds like a change well worth looking into. If you end up running low on flash space, or just don’t think the quality bump is worth it, you can always edit the file back to its original condition.