Coverting iMovie files to WMV (New Mac User)

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Dragonchilde, Dec 9, 2010.

  1. Dragonchilde macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2010
    #1
    Ooooookay. I'm a complete Mac neophyte. I have an iMac, fresh out of the box (less than a month old) running OS X 10.6.5. Pretty standard stuff on it, most everything is out of the box.

    So I bought my mac primarily for work. I do video editing for a small church; simple stuff, record the sermon, fix the sorry audio from the Sony Handycam (getting it to convert THOSE files to formats iMovie can use was a huge pain as it was), add titles, post it to the website.

    The problem is, I HAVE to post it as WMV - the pastor was very specific in his instructions that users (himself included... he's exceedingly non-tech-savvy) should NOT have to install anything to view our website. It's primarily video, and he wants to make sure that it's accessible as possible.

    So. That leaves me with a MASSIVE DILEMMA.

    I'm discovering much to my dismay that converting videos to WMV is a lot more complicated than I thought it would be.

    I'm using iMovie to make the videos; but that saves in m4v format. Which requires a plugin for Windows Media Player to download.

    I have MPEG Streamclip, but as far as I can tell, EVERY format it converts to requires a plugin to play on WMP.

    I really need to convert these videos; I can spend a little extra money, but truthfully, I can't manage spending a metric crapton for fourteen additional programs just to convert videos! I'm very poor right now, and it's right before Christmas. I suppose I can go back to taking over my husband's computer and using Premiere elements, but that completely defeats the purpose of buying an incredibly expensive piece of machinery to make videos that can't be played on the majority of computers on the planet without downloading something first.

    I know one possible solution is Quicktime Pro + Flip4Mac Pro, but that's almost $60 - money I can't really spare right now. Taxtime, maybe.

    Could someone please help? Tell me what I'm missing here? Are there free/opensource solutions that can be used for this purpose? I don't mind some quality loss, the posted videos are small, and the source videos are large, so I've got some wiggle room.
     
  2. eji macrumors 6502

    eji

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2004
    Location:
    Inland Empire
    #2
    If the videos are WMV format, then he's forcing people to install something to view the video. WMV requires Microsoft's proprietary codec, and to view them on the Mac it requires the third-party Flip4mac plugin. So the pastor is unwittingly breaking his own rule.

    I'm fairly sure that the .mp4 video format would in fact be more universally accessible than .wmv. And it's easy to export from iMovie.

    I don't know offhand of a free solution for wmv export, or really any other conversion option besides Flip4mac — and that alone should give some indication of how restricting WMV really is.
     
  3. Dragonchilde, Dec 9, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2010

    Dragonchilde thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2010
    #3
    Be that as it may, I really don't have a choice in this. :) This is my job, so I have to stick with the specs given.

    Except for default windows. Which the pastor uses. Hence the problem. :) Now, if I could get it to .mpg - I think THAT would work. I'm fine with using older, more universally compatible formats. But I can't figure out how to do that with iMovie.
     
  4. lindsayanng macrumors 68000

    lindsayanng

    Joined:
    May 4, 2008
    Location:
    East Haven, CT
    #4
    You do have a choice. I come into this all the time as I do web development. All you have to do is stick the movie in a basic web page and PROVE to him that it shouldn't be WMV and that your way is even more inclusive.

    Like i said, just put the video on a page and have him open it from every computer he could possibly think of. When he realizes that he doesn't have to download anything he will understand.

    Some people are stubborn, but thats not an excuse to not educate them and show them/
     
  5. Dragonchilde thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2010
    #5
    Except for the fact that it DOESN'T. That's the problem I'm having. I'm not wedded to the WMV format, I'm really not.

    But if I load an mp4 on this website, it will not play in internet explorer out of the box. Why? Because you have to download a codec (according to every scrap of information I can muster, including M$'s own site.)

    What I need, basically, is something that iMovie can save as, or MPEG Streamclip, that IE can play out of the box. Without installing codecs. I'm fine with older formats.

    Now, if there's a way to save the mpg4, okay, that's fine. I'm new to this business of saving in different formats (I'm a web developer, NOT a video editor, but there you go).

    I'm getting incredibly frustrated, because I quite frankly can't afford to drop $50-60 on MORE add-on software when I've already spent over $1200 on this stupid computer already. It's making me want to stab someone with a fork. (Not anyone here. Mostly Jobs and Gates. Because all we need is a little more open source love and less focus on OMG MINE) But that's a rant for another time.
     
  6. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #6
    Internet Explorer uses the Windows Media APIs which are not limited to WMV. While you are looking for better alternatives, you may use AVC's Any Video Converter Free for Mac. It will convert just about any video format that is playable on your system to WMV. There is also a $40.00 pro version of Any Video Converter for Mac, but the free version will do what you want.
     
  7. Middling macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #7
    Windows 7 comes with support for h.264 built-in. Earlier versions of Windows require a codec to be installed.

    WMV isn't supported out-of-the-box on Macs.

    The HTML5 video tag can be used for browsers other than IE (although IE 9 will support it). For Safari users the video should be in h.264 with AAC for audio. For Firefox 3.5 and Opera 10 the video should be in Ogg Theora with Ogg Vorbis audio. Firefox 4.0 will also support WebM (VP8) video.

    The most compatible way of displaying video is still currently to use a flash container. So your best bet is to upload to Youtube or similar and embed the video that way.

    If your pastor is still insisting on WMV for video then have him reach into the church's coffers or his own pocket for the cost of any licences for conversion software you require.
     
  8. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #8
    This is good to know, but is useless to the OP. In the world inhabited by people like his pastor, people are perfectly content using Windows 98. Many running unpatched Windows XP consider themselves to be on the bleeding edge of technology. To suggest a solution that requires Windows 7 is on the same level as suggesting that the church replace its Dodge Maxi-Van with a bus powered by hydrogen fuel cells.
     
  9. lindsayanng macrumors 68000

    lindsayanng

    Joined:
    May 4, 2008
    Location:
    East Haven, CT
    #9
    Yea, my other suggestion was going to be to upload it to youtube. You know you can set videos on youtube as completely private so no one can see them except you OR you can lock down all comments so it's not a typical "youtube" video.

    OR you can use JW Longtail flash video container. It's entirely free.
     
  10. Dragonchilde, Dec 10, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2010

    Dragonchilde thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2010
    #10
    Unfortunately, youtube is not an option. The videos in question are approximately 30 minutes long. (although if I have to, I can cut them in two pieces, I'm just trying to avoid that if at all possible. It doubles creation time.

    Sigh. I'll figure this out somehow. Thanks for the help, guys.

    Edit: Actually, it may be an option now. It looks like Youtube is getting ready to roll out large video length limits. One of my accounts just got enabled with this, and I'm testing it now, so I may not need to worry after all. :)
     
  11. lindsayanng macrumors 68000

    lindsayanng

    Joined:
    May 4, 2008
    Location:
    East Haven, CT
    #11
    If youtube is not an option, then you definitely should look into JW LongTail player. Its basically the same concept as youtube - a video file wrapped in a flash player. So if a computer can play youtube, it can play a video wrapped in LongTail flash player
     

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