Vem will use the utf-8 encoding both internally and as the encoding of new files. Unless you know that you have to work with files of different encodings from this one, this is probably the behavior that you want.
However, if for any reason you need to work with other encodings, then you may want to take the following points into account:
Vem will try to detect the encoding of a file upon opening it. And will use that encoding for editing and saving it. So, if you open a latin1 file, it will be saved back as latin1 too. The detected encoding is displayed in the right section of the status line.
The detection mechanism tries to guess the encoding, and, in some occasions, it can fail. If you want to load a file and its encoding is being incorrectly detected, you can use the following command to use the correct one (eg. latin1)::edit ++enc=lating1 my-file.txt
Also, if you have a file loaded in one encoding and want to convert it to another one, use::set fileencoding=<new encoding>
The file will be converted and will be written to disk with the new encoding next time you save.
Finally, if you want to always work with a different encoding (let's say latin1 by default) and don't want to detect the encoding when files are opened, then you can add these lines to your vemrc file:set encoding=latin1 set fileencodings=latin1
Warning note: set this options if you know what you're doing and if you know that you won't be ever editing files in any other encoding. There may be loss of information with these settings!
For more information, check the following help topics:
:help 'encoding' :help 'fileencoding' :help 'fileencodings'