It seems that there are as many video file formats as there are devices that can be played on. Flash video, MKV, MOV, AVI, MPEG. And even if your desktop can read them, your mobile device probably can't. No matter how out of date the file format is, you can still convert it to a more versatile and easy-to-use format.
The best video converters like Prism Video Converter can handle a wide variety of different file formats, making the conversion process seamless and fast for users instead of being frustrating and time consuming. We rounded them up below.
Any video converter (Windows / MacOS)
Each Video Converter (AVC) is a fantastic freeware that enables conversions from DivX and MPEG4 to VOB and more than 60 other input formats (including 4K) through an attractive and minimalist interface. The software also offers custom video outputs and batch processing for converting multiple files at once, and saves all converted videos in a predefined folder for quick access and organization.
AVC can directly extract audio from a specific video and convert it to a limited number of formats including MP3, AAC, WAVE, and others. You can also use the program to download and convert YouTube and Google videos. However, these are our preferred methods.
Handbrake (Windows / MacOS)
HandBrake seemed to be on its last legs in 2006 when the original developer of the software, Eric Petit, fell from the ground. However, software development continued with the help of some ambitious people eager to update and revise the existing software for a changing world.
The open source video converter now offers one of the most comprehensive software packages for ripping and converting video files for playback on a number of popular devices including iPhones, smart TVs, and tablets. The user interface is sleek and well designed, with numerous menu tabs for advanced functionality, all of which are in a traditional user interface that anyone familiar with Windows or macOS can understand.
HandBrake cannot be outdone when it comes to converting files to MP4 or MKV format, but unfortunately it is also not suitable for those who are reluctant to learn the software.
Prism Video Converter (Windows / MacOS)
Prism is a converter and video editor that is a great choice if you don't currently have a video editor, but still need to make changes to the video clip being converted. The user interface isn't particularly simple, but it follows a well-known formula and is quick to learn with large buttons for its various functions: add your video file and you're good to work. The converter works with all popular video formats and all formats that use the DirectShow codec, as well as device-specific formats for smartphones, etc. Additional functions include adjusting filters, brightness, contrast and rotation, as well as creating text overlays, watermarks and other important ones Features you may need.
Note that the free download for Prism includes all features, but the advanced video editing features will be discontinued after a few days unless you purchase the full version. However, the converter skills are free forever.
DivX Video Converter (Windows / MacOS)
The DivX video converter has many useful built-in options for input and output, as well as editing tools to optimize the videos you want to convert. Although the software is a bit intrusive to get you to upgrade to the premium version, the free one works pretty well. The user interface is clean and gives you extensive output options.
When adding files, you can do so from a local drive or import directly from Blu-ray Discs. The software also supports Google Drive and Dropbox for those who want to save files that are stored remotely. A number of output profiles offer a number of predefined options. If you want, you can further customize the resulting file. Among other things, you can choose the resolution, change the aspect ratio, and change the bit rate.
Cloud Convert (web-based)
Downloading applications and programs can be problematic – and it can take up valuable space and time. If you don't want to bother with a download, Cloud Convert is an excellent web-based solution that supports 218 different formats including PDF to MP4. It's also super easy to use, which is always a plus with any program.
With Cloud Convert, you can complete both batch conversion and folder monitoring. The API also allows you to apply these functions to other applications that you may already have.
The entire conversion process takes place in the cloud. The output settings such as aspect ratio, codec, bit rate and resolution can also be adjusted via the app's web interface before conversion. When you're done, you will automatically receive an email from Cloud Convert. The converted file should end up in your file Dropbox or Google Drive.