Samsung SL820 + iMovie '09 Help needed

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by okachobi, Aug 15, 2010.

  1. okachobi macrumors newbie

    Oct 30, 2007
    I purchased a Samsung SL820 camera that also records HD video at 1280x720 encoded using the H.264 codec. ( )

    I first noticed a problem when I imported video into iPhoto and watched it with Quicktime 10. It plays back perfectly, so I tried to publish the video to MobileMe's gallery and the result was a blank white video. I assumed there was a problem with compatibility with MobileMe, and gave up trying to do that.

    But then today I wanted to do some basic editing and launched iMovie and it pulled in the iPhoto videos. I had videos from 3 different cameras in there, and all worked except the Samsung's video. It showed a filmstrip of thumbnails for the video, but when I mouse over the video preview window it doesn't change the video and it will not play back the video. I can select a range from the filmstrip thumbnails, but it simply doesn't playback.

    Is this a known issue or am I 'special'? Is there anyone using an SL820 with iMovie '09? Its very frustrating because my intention with this camera was to replace a Panasonic PV-GS250, but thus far the PV-GS250, a 5+ year old camera produces better video (lower resolution, but few compression artifacts since its DV and better color quality (3CCD) without the odd white-balance changing issue I've seen with the SL820 in its auto-mode.

    That said, I still want to get my old videos to work with iMovie. I recognize that I can export them, run ffmpeg on them to convert them to another format, then import them again, but right now I'm stumped as to why the H.264 video is not working with iMovie. The specs I read on iMovie say that it supports that format. This camera came highly recommended for its picture quality, but I've been unimpressed from either the still photos or the video. The PV-GS250 produces better video results, and my Nikon D60 produces much better photos (expected- but I thought they would be closer)

    If anyone can help me to understand why this camera works with Quicktime 10 playback but won't work the codec for export from QT10 or for iMovie '09 I'd really appreciate it.
  2. okachobi thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 30, 2007

    I finally found a solution on my own through experimentation.

    The mp4 files generated by the Samsung SL820 are not compatible for iMovie '09 by default, and do not export properly from Quicktime 10 either. I was unable to use Quicktime to post them to youtube or mobileMe Gallery.

    The solution is pretty simple- rewrite the file to ISMA 1.0 standards. And there is a simple program that does this from the command line: mp4box

    You must grab mp4box from here and use it from the a terminal command line:

    $ mp4box -isma filename.MP4

    Now import into iMovie and the file works properly... I hope this saves someone some time because no one else has documented a solution.

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