Expression Encoder 3 will be part of the Expression 3/Silverlight 3 launch on Friday. There are many exciting new features in this release – way too many to go into in this short blog posting, so be sure to check out the detailed posting on the Expression Encoder Team Blog.

Here are some highlights to whet your appetite:

IIS Smooth Streaming

Encode your content in high quality to multiple bitrates to take advantage of Smooth Streaming, a feature of Internet Information Server 7 Media Services. Take a look at the results at http://www.iis.net/media. Encoder 3 adds a brand new dedicated VBR VC-1 Smooth Streaming codec that has been engineered for extreme high-performance and high-quality encoding.

Improved H.264 Support

Extending the H.264 encoding support for devices that we introduced in Encoder 2, we’ve added VBR, Main Profile support and custom resolutions so you can encode full HD 1080p sources. Tinkerers will be happy to gain access to the H.264 codec parameters. Encoder 3 also enables you to produce H.264 content for Smooth Streaming.

Video Screen Capture

There are lots of screen capture utilities out there, but we think you’ll like ours for any application where capturing the nuances of graphically complex screens is a must. Our new screen capture codec is super-efficient both in terms of compression and processor usage, so the application you’re trying to capture doesn’t have all its CPU time sapped by the capturing tool! If you’re capturing say a Silverlight application displaying high-quality video, your screen captures will truly reflect the quality of the experience rather than suffering from jerky motion and color banding! The captured files open up directly in Expression Encoder for quick editing, or export from Encoder to edit in your favorite NLE.

Redesigned User Interface

The Encoder UI looks a lot different. We think you’ll like it because it is easier to find things and you can just start typing in the profile palette to find the one that you’re looking for. ExpEncoder_thumb_1

Silverlight 3 Templates

All the templates have been rewritten for Silverlight 3. For those of you doing Smooth Streaming, we've included the Smooth Streaming Graphing Player shows at MIX09, which gives you a visual representation of smooth streaming and the ability to simulate different bandwidths.

Software Development Kit and Object Model

We’ve enhanced the SDK and object model so that you can all the powerful features of the advanced encoding. Yes – Live Encoding mode now has an object model! Also, the SDK is now included with Encoder 3 rather than being a separate download.

Check back here tomorrow to read more exciting news as we unveil Expression 3 and Silverlight 3 for all to see!