Video Formats Explained and Video Format Converter

Do you know which format you should choose when you want to backup DVD or rip Blu-ray to digital version, MP4,MKV, H.265? You may even don’t know the difference between video format and video codec? Here, let’s explain what is video codec, format and what is the best video format? 

 

What Is a Codec? 

Most of the video you'll come across is compressed, meaning its been altered to take up less space on your computer. For example, a regular Blu-Ray disc usually takes up around 30 or 50GB of space—which is a lot for a normal person to download or store on their hard drive. So, we usually compress movies to make them more manageable, usually with some loss in video quality. 

A codec compresses and decompresses data. It interprets the video file and determines how to play it on your screen. Your computer comes with many codecs pre-installed, though you can install codec packs for wider support, or a program like VLC or PotPlayer which have lots of codec support built-in (which we prefer). 

Some examples of codecs include: 

FFmpeg (which includes formats like MPEG-2, the format in which DVDs are stored, and MPEG-4, the format Apple uses for movies in the iTunes store) 

  • DivX, which works with a certain type of MPEG-4 file, and was often used to rip DVDs in the pre-HD era 
  • XviD, an open source version of DivX, popular among movie pirates 
  • x264, which compresses H.264 videos (Also known as MPEG-4 AVC), and is very popular for high definition videos 


There are a lot of different codecs out there, and it can get really confusing with all the different versions of MPEG standards. These days, you really only need to concern yourself with a few—which we'll talk about in a moment. 

What Is a Container? 

A container is, essentially, a bundle of files. Usually a container consists of a video codec and an audio codec, though it can also contain things like subtitles. Containers allow you to choose one codec for your video and one for your audio, which is nice—that way, you can choose to use the high-quality DTS audio, or compress your audio to something like MP3 for even more space savings. It just gives you a bit more control over how you record your videos or rip your movies. Popular containers include: 

  • AVI 
  • Matroska (which uses the extension MKV) 
  • MP4 (which has been popularized by Apple in the iTunes Store—note that this can also come with the M4V extension, but the container is the exact same) 
  • MOV (which was created by Apple) 
  • The main difference between different containers is not only the codecs they support but what other features they support—like subtitles or chapters. These days, MKV is an extremely popular container, mainly because it supports nearly any video codec under the sun, as well as a ton of extra features (plus it's open source). 


What's the best video format? 

While there isn't one "best video format," there are best video formats for particular jobs. Things to be aware of when choosing a video format, apart from the intended audience — Will they be watching video streaming over the Internet? Do they have a fast connection? Do they have a DVD player? Do they have a Blu-ray player? — are the longevity of the format and how widespread its adoption. 

For a number of years now, a good bet for a forward-looking, high-quality, versatile video format is h.264, aka, MPEG-4/AVC (Advanced Video Coding), though it really needs a better name. h.264 is supported by a number of important players including Microsoft, Apple and Adobe, though in early 2011 Google dropped support for h.264 from its Chrome browser citing the desire to use only open-source (i.e. non-patented, royalty-free) standards, Microsoft swiftly made a Chrome extension which restored support. Google's answer was .vp9 (soon to be vp10) to be used as part of HTML5. Performance of the two codecs is very similar. Adoptions and usage will determine if there's an eventual winner. 

Best Video Converter to Transcode Video Format 

Sometimes, you probably have some MKV files and want to put them to iPad or place some AVI videos on PC and play them with WMP. All this situations need a video converter to realize. 
A video converter is a software that can remux video, only changing the video format without changing the video codec and parameters and transcode video to another video with different video codec/format. There are many video transcoders on the market. Comparatively excellent top 5 are: 

Pavtube Video Converter Ultimate It is an all-in-one media solution that has the ability of removing copy protection of Blu-ray, DVD movies and shift format. It can switch video format to another one such as H.265,MP4, MKV, AVI, MOV, M3U8, M4V, WMV, 3GP. It also can add external subtitle,text and image watermark to Blu-ray, DVD and videos. If needed, you also can trim, merge, crop, split video as your need. 

Pavtube Video Converter – What is the easiest and best way to convert multiple audio and video sources to the desired audio/video format? Definitely Pavtube Video Converter! This program allows you to convert video types such as SD videos, HD footages from camcorders and TiVo/DVR recordings to almost any audio/video format for free entertainment on mobile devices, HD media players, as well as free access to video editing software. 

Wondershare Video Converter Ultimate – This program has every tool and feature we looked for in the best video converters. It has a healthy selection of both common and uncommon video formats, and the converted video was as close to perfect as can be reasonably expected. Only one other program in our lineup matched the quality of Wondershare’s conversion. 

AnyMP4 Video Converter – AnyMP4 Video Converter is powerful and reliable video converter software which can convert 4K Ultra HD/1080p/HD/General Video to your needed ones like MP4, MOV, AVI, WMV, FLV, MKV, 3GP, etc. As the best video conversion software, AnyMP4 Video Converter can also convert video to 4K/HD/3D video, as well as convert video files to audio formats like MP3, AAC, AC3, OGG and more with blazing-fast conversion speed and extremely high quality. 

Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate -?Equipped with advanced HD video conversion technology, Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate can easily convert HD video formats such as H.264 and MPEG-4 video. It can convert more than 160 video and audio formats and convert HD videos, up to 1080p and 4K video. 

Top 5 Video Converter Ultimate Comparison Chart: Input, Output, Features

 

Round 1: Supported Input Files Comparison

 

Video Converter Blu-ray DVD MKV MP4 AVI FLV MPEG TS AVCHD 3GP WMV H.265
Pavtube Video Converter Ultimate
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
Pavtube Video Converter
NO
NO
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
Wondershare Video Converter Ultimate
NO
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
AnyMP4 Video Converter
NO
NO
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES

Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate

NO
NO
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES

 

Round 2: Supported Output Files Comparison

 

Video Converter MP4 MKV AVI MOV M4V 3GP WMV FLV H.265 MPEG WebM M3U8 3D
Pavtube Video Converter Ultimate
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
Pavtube Video Converter
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
Wondershare Video Converter Ultimate
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES
AnyMP4 Video Converter
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES

Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate

YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES

 

Round 3: Supported Devices Comparison

 

Video Converter Apple Sony LG Samsung Android NLE PS3 Xbox 360 Wii TVs
Pavtube Video Converter Ultimate
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
Pavtube Video Converter
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES
YES
YES
YES
Wondershare Video Converter Ultimate
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES
YES
YES
YES
AnyMP4 Video Converter
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES
YES
NO
NO

Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate

YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES
YES
NO
NO

 

Round 4: Features Comparison

 

Video Converter Convert Audio Merge Trim Rotate Adjust Settings Add Subtitle 2D/3D-3D Deinterlace Video Watermark
Pavtube Video Converter Ultimate
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
Pavtube Video Converter
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
Wondershare Video Converter Ultimate
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
AnyMP4 Video Converter
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES
NO
YES

Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate

YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
YES
NO
YES

 

Our Verdict: 

You can play any video on any device only if your video is in the right format. A Video Converter Ultimate can shift the video format including Blu-ray/DVD format to fit your needs. Peruse our top 5 Video Converter Ultimate reviews to choose the best video converter software application for your needs. Of course, from the chart above, Pavtube Video Converter Ultimate <reviewis obviously the top performer with the function of top Blu-ray Ripper + DVD Ripper + Audio Convertet + Video Converter. 

External Reference Link: 

lifehacker 
videomaker 

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