Converting video to use in iMovie

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by mike81, Jun 9, 2008.

  1. mike81 macrumors newbie

    mike81

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    #1
    I have tons of video that I want to start using in a new iMovie project but all the files are either avi, wmv, or mpg files. What programs are available to convert these files to the needed MPEG-4, DV, or .mov files for use in iMovie? I downloaded HandBrake but it will not recognize the files either. Did I choose the wrong program or and I missing something? Thanks in advance!
     
  2. mike81 thread starter macrumors newbie

    mike81

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    Dec 14, 2007
  3. Katilea macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    #3
    I also have small video clips i made on camcorder mainly of my dog training and i made them into mini film in windows media player (i think).

    Now i got a iMac. I managed to transfer all my old files from My Documents onto my iMac but the video clips wont play and when I try and drag them across to iMovie they wont stay there to edit them.

    Im not that technical so i got no idea what kind of files they are. I dont want to spend a fortune on video editing as its just a little hobby i do occasionally, is there any free downloads that converts the files?

    My photo's all worked on iPhoto straight away so i thought the videos would do too. It also plays my music that I had downloaded via napster (not sure whether its only the converted MP3's its playing, as there is two copies of each song WMA and MP3).

    Can someone explain (in as non-technical way as possible please! :rolleyes: ), how I can see the little windows movies i made on my iMac?

    Thanks

    Kati
     
  4. spice weasel macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2003
    #4
    You have several options. One is ffmpegx, a set of unix utilities with a GUI front-end. It does a lot, but it has a steep learning curve if you are new to the world of video codecs, etc.

    The other option that works well is MPEG Streamclip. It is pretty straightforward and intuitive to use. Both are free downloads (but you have to download three necessary components for ffmpegx separately from the main app).

    If you want to edit the files in iMovie, you'll want to convert to DV. You'll lose some quality with the transcoding you'll have to do (once to DV, and then again to mp4 or whatever codec you like), but that's the price you pay for editing avi's, etc.
     
  5. MasterNile macrumors 65816

    MasterNile

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    San Antonio, TX
  6. spice weasel macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2003
    #6
    Your clips are probably .wmv files. If you want to edit them, you'll need to reconvert them back to DV (as per my above post). If you just want to play them, download Flip-4-Mac, which plays .wmv in Quicktime. While you're at it, also download and install Perian, which allows you to play avi's and other containers/codecs in Quicktime as well.
     
  7. Katilea macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    #7
    Thanks guys.

    I found the files on my mac. The clips have asf extension IMAG(number).ASF when i try open with iMovie is not selectable , iPhoto was but it said it was an 'unrecognised format'

    The clips i put together to make a mini movie has MSWMM extension. I did try quicktime player which said it worked on unix files (it says unix executable file) under the name of movie, but when i try and get Quicktime to open it it says 'This file is not a movie file'

    Flip4Mac mentions WMA and WMV but doesnt menion avi, asf, or MSWMM.

    I found some of original clips on the memory card (it was just one of those cheap little mini DV cameras) and they are also in the ASF format and it says 'plain text' underneath.

    It maybe that the cheap DV camera was only compatible with windows, though i thought the mac like windows would be able to read any card format? Im using a multi card reader connected via USB (clips are on a 256MB SD card).

    Is there a mini camcorder out that automatically records in a format compatible with iMovie? What extensions should I be looking for?

    Kati
     
  8. sheelaf macrumors newbie

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    Oct 27, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #8
  9. Chase R macrumors 65816

    Chase R

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    PDX

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