Video compression/codecs comparison

I would be really grateful if someone could provide a comparison (or point to such a website) of the differences between the various codecs and video file formats out today.

Such as .swf, .wmv, .mov, .avi, mpeg and so forth.

Eg: which are best for really condensing down small? Is a two-step process best? What is the difference between Sorenson and Sorenson 3? etc

The digital editing software I have allows exporting in various forms such as .mov and .wmv, I then use another piece of software to convert to flash. I want to find the most efficent way to do it, with the highest quality result.

Note that file suffix has very little to do with which codec to use in many cases. You can encode using mpeg codecs into most (all?) of the types listed above, for example.

Also note that you should assume the viewer is not nec. using the player you use (it’s a matter of their personal choice) and using an open standard like .mpeg over .wmv is a much better idea.

Alas, as to which is better, it is not unlike asking which religion is better. Everyone’s is the best of course and all the others are spawns of Satan. Go for max. compat.