Converting FLV, AVI, or MP4 Video Files

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Many important video resources are available in FLV and MP4. For example, YouTube videos, and video created on Flip Video Camcorder. Unfortunately you may not be able to use these on your PC or Mac as you might wish.

Warning!

Loading codecs on your PC or Mac from third-party sources can result in importation of malware that can impair your operating system, or corrupt its normal applications. For example, DIVX codecs are known to corrupt QuickTime on the Mac and may also adversely affect some PC applications. Often, PC viruses are disguised as codecs that you are prompted to install. Generally speaking your Mac or PC system, has all the codecs you should need. We recommend avoiding applications that alter your operating systems. Programs like Limewire are especially dangerous.

Limits of PowerPoint for the PC and Video Editing Software for the PC

We provide students with video editing application MovieMaker for the PC.

It is limited to editing WMV, AVI or raw data formats. It does not import, view or edit MP4 or FLV without the purchase of separate codecs. Flip Video Cam recordings in MP4 cannot be edited in MovieMaker.

Likewise, PowerPoint for the PC will not recognize and embed movies in MOV (Quicktime), MP4 or FLV formats.

Limits of PowerPoint for the Mac and Video Editing Software for the Mac

PowerPoint for the Mac will recognize and embed MOV (Quicktime) movies and the usual PC types such as WMV. But will not recognize and embed MP4 or FLV.

We provide students with video editing application iMovie for the Mac. It is limited to editing MOV (Quicktime), WMV, AVI or raw data formats. It does not import, view or edit MP4 or FLV without the additional codecs. Flip Video Cam recordings in MP4 cannot be edited in iMovie without these additional codecs.

Mac Tools for Conversion

iMovie will not import .AVI files but will accept .wmv or .mp4. To make .mp4 and .flv available to PowerPoint for the Mac and iMovie, you will need to download a converter. The ones we suggest are:

Perian

PRISM

  1. Download PRISM Application from the website http://www.nchsoftware.com/prism/index.html
  2. Open this application
  3. Select the file you want to convert.
  4. Choose the place where you want the “new” file (.wmv or .mp4) to be saved when done converting the original file.
  5. After the original file is converted, you should be able to open iMovie and select File - Import - Movies and find the file where you saved the new movie file.
  6. Select the movie file and import.

Handbrake

PC Tools for Conversion

There several utilities that can be used to convert files from FLV or MP4 to AVI which is the file format used by MovieMaker.

Here are two freeware apps that are reliable, but you may find them a bit confusing to use. There is help documentation for them.