MKV to MP4 conversion issues

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by CultHero, Nov 23, 2009.

  1. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #1
    I am trying to convert the latest Top Gear episode from a MKV file to an MP4 so I can put it on my apple TV and watch it on my tv. I have every other episode this way. I usually use iSquint to convert but for some reason it wouldn't convert today. I used handbrake instead and it did the conversion but lost about 1/2 of the audio. MP4 file picture looks great, but the sound is as if every other word is missing. Any suggestions for how I can convert this?
    FWIW something is going wrong in the conversion as the MKV file plays perfectly with VLC player sound and all, but the MP4 doesn't. I will check my Handbrake settings again, but didn't see anything wrong the first time.

    This is the HD torrent (1.4 gigs, 720p), not sure if that makes any difference but :confused:
     
  2. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    Northern VA (outside DC)
    #2
    Funny you brought that up, i'm getting the exact same episode right now. I'll let you know if it works when I try to convert it.
     
  3. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    Northern VA (outside DC)
    #3
    Just checked the handbraked file this morning and the sound was choppy, sounded like a cd was skipping. Original file works fine though.
     
  4. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    #4
    I tried for 4 hours to get this to work the other day. I eventually gave up and grabbed the SD torrent of episodes 14-1 and 14-2. I dont watch them on ATV though, just on my 24" imac and my phone.

    Its seems as though you can either have a great picture and choppy sound, or a seriosuly screwed up aspect ratio and great sound, not both.
     
  5. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2009
    #5
    There is a simpler way. If your running Snow Leopard open the MKV files with Quicktime X and Save As "Movie", Quicktime will convert it to a MOV file that can be added directly to your iTunes Library - I did this with all 4 season of Battlestar Galactica. You'll need a plug-in to open MKV files with Quicktime, I use Perian. I don't know if this works in Leopard, I don't think Quicktime 7 has the same function unless you have the Pro version.
     
  6. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    Northern VA (outside DC)
    #6
    any tips how to get Perian to work? I just downloaded it, I'm guessing I need to restart? I can't get quicktime to open the mkv file.
     
  7. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    Northern VA (outside DC)
    #7
    weird, I can get quicktime to open avis but not mkvs... Downloaded Perian too.
     
  8. macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #8
    I finally figured out how to convert mkv to mp4 using Handbrake.

    Instead of using the Apple presets (which creates mp4 but Quicktime does not open them) I now use the Normal preset with the following preferences:

    - MP4 file
    - Large file size
    - H.264 codec
    - Single pass encoding
    - Target size equal to the source files size
    - Picture settings: Anamorphic: none/loose and setting the size to the source files size.
    If I choose strict anamorphic, the file doesn't open with Quicktime.

    I don't use Perian or other codec packages and with the stated settings, Quicktime X as well as iTunes opens every file I create that way.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    GreatDrok

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #9
    Solution - Upgrade to Handbrake 0.9.4 and convert MKV to H.264 m4v using a RF 20 and set the screen to 1280x720. Also, you *MUST* add the following to your advanced settings ":weightp=0" otherwise you get nasty blocking in cross fades due to a new feature of x264 used.

    I've been using HB 0.9.4 to convert my MKVs to m4v with the above settings and it works perfectly with my ATV and solves the problem I had with HB 0.9.3 where I had to export using QT with Perian to MP4 first with MP4 passthrough and then do the conversion. HandBrake does a better job of encoding than QuickTime and is much faster.
     
  10. macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #10
    Is there any difference between .mp4 and .m4v?

    I can't even choose m4v, but the video quality is great. I too use RF: 20 and H.264 encoding.

    Unfortunately the encoding is everything but fast. I get about 25 fps (720p source) with 2 instances of Handbrake on a Octad MacPro. One instance only use 500% of the CPU that's why I encode with two instances at the same time.
    Is there a way to accelerate that operation (besides buying faster processors of course :rolleyes:).
     
  11. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2008
    #11
    The following programs are used
    * QuickTime 7 with Perian plug-in installed
    * MKVMerge
    * VisualHUB
    * MetaX

    What I would do is the following.

    1. Open the .MKV in QuickTime 7 (with Perian installed)
    2. Export the entire episode and edit the settings so that it'll export a .mp4 but without and video, only encode the audio.
    3. Use MKVMerge to open the .mp4 with the choppy audio and the .mp4 with the audio converted with QuickTime 7.
    4. Select only the video and the audio from QuickTime 7 and save the file back into a .mkv
    5. Open VisualHUB and use that to export the .mkv file but have it use Passthru on both video and audio.
    6. Tag with MetaX and enjoy.

    Something like this actually happened to me but it was with a movie. I'm pretty sure it was a DVD of Zombie Land and Handbrake screwed up the audio. I did basically the same procedure to try and fix the problem and it worked perfectly.
     
  12. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    Northern VA (outside DC)
    #12
    I figured out why I couldn't get it to work, apparently quicktime can't open 720 or 1080 with Perian, not sure if there's anything else that could work. Guess I'll just have to Handbrake it.
     
  13. macrumors 6502a

    GreatDrok

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #13
    Fun fact - while mp4 and m4v are technically the same, ATV won't show chapters for an mp4 but the same file called an m4v will. Quicktime doesn't care either way. Drove me nuts figuring that one out - chapters in the mp4 in quicktime and iTunes, but none on the ATV. Change the file extension manually to m4v and you're fine.
    Most likely a limitation on the threading in x264. You should be happy with 25 fps encoding for 720p, my MacBook Pro gets around 3 with the same settings.
     
  14. macrumors 65816

    Scarpad

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    Location:
    Ma
    #14

    I converted a mkv of a movie with those setting and it worked and looked fine on 0.94. where I'm hedgey is when I'm ripping a Blu ray to mkv at 1080p and I want to convert down to 720p. I notice most 720p conversions on the interweb are about 4gb. Using the ATV setting at RF20 usually produces about a 1.5 to 2.5gb file dependign on the size of the movie and I'm wondering if I'd get a better detailed encode using avg bitrate at 4000 with 2 passes.
     
  15. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 26, 2008
    #15
    mkv to mp conversion issues

    might be slightly off topic and apol's if is ...
    i have done pretty much all of the below over the past couple of years to get a good quality file for ATV/ iTunes/ Laptop and PS3. and i have convoluted the process far beyond some of the outlines mentioned here.
    now, re mkv to mpg, i use the simple qtx 'save as' method. the resultant file plays across all my various needs.
    the mkv source file is usually h264 with ac35.1 -does anyone know what the qtx save as produces?
    i know it plays in 5.1 but as it plays on the apple products, wouldn't it be AAC?
    and in the latest handbrake-encode vs qtx-save-as challenge ... qtx takes 10mins. hb can take 10 hours. easily. one of us is doing something so wrong. probably me altho i stick pretty close to hb presets.

    (and at all times, the .mpg or .m4v or .mp4 moniker can be the maker or the heartbraker)

    hopefully this thread is still alive and commenting?
     
  16. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2009
    Location:
    Northern VA (outside DC)
    #16
    just updated Perian and it now works with HD mkv files.
     
  17. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2009
    #17
    Posting Movies

    Does anybody upload their converted MKV - MP4/M4V files to NZB sites like newzbin, for the ATV. I dont see any but i reckon people in the know should start. Converting these movies from MKV - MP4 take blooming ages. Is there a way of upgrading the processing power of the ATV yet so it can handle the large MKV movie files?
     
  18. cxc
    macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2007
    Location:
    Cologne, Germany
    #18
    I was wondering what is the easiest way of remuxing a h264 video from a mkv container to a mp4 container without touching on video conversion?

    I tried Quicktime 7 Pro but it won´t allow to save as or export from an mkv file. Handbrake 0.94 doesn´t seem to cut it either.

    Any input?

    Thanks!
     
  19. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2007
    #19
    I'm a complete ATV newb, considering a purchase and just checking to see if I can play torrent, topgear, and mkv files.

    Wouldn't it be easier to hack the ATV to play mkv files than all this conversion stuff (or does the ATV hacks not support mkv?)
     
  20. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2009
    #20
    well, i always try Pavtube MKV Converter to help me when i come up with such problem, it can give high output quality.
     

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