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Old 06-28-2008, 01:22 PM   #1
Registered: Apr 2008
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Quicktime MOV format convert to MPG video?

Linux newbie question about how to convert from MOV movie file format to a standard MPG video format that is playable in any DVD player.

I have tried to use LIVES, the Linux video editor program to convert a MOV movie into an MPG movie, but it tells me that there is no audio. When I open the MOV movie in LIVES and select the "preview" button, I get both video and mono audio. After LIVES finishes opening the file, it only has video. If I open the LIVES player, and play the selection, it only has video, no audio. The main video editor of LIVES, says "no audio". When I encode the video clip as MPG, it converts all the frames, and saves the file, but again it has no audio.

1) How do I get LIVES to include the audio in the MOV movie clip that it opens (it plays the audio during preview)?

2) What utility can I use to convert the MOV movie file to MPG? When I open it in LIVES, and then encode it, not only does it take a long, long, time, but it does not give the audio. Is there another way to do it?

3) How can I get Linux to "automagically" convert MOV files to MPG with audio and video?
Old 06-28-2008, 09:23 PM   #2
Registered: Feb 2008
Distribution: Debian Testing, OSX
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The one I've used before is called mencoder, which is like a plugin for mplayer. It worked quite well, but I don't remember how fast it was. I think all you have to do is open the movie you want in mplayer, set the output for mencoder, then play the movie, and it will convert it...or maybe it's all command line. I really don't remember. I haven't used it for a long time.

Good luck.
Old 06-28-2008, 10:01 PM   #3
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This will give you a basic mpeg file

mencoder -of mpeg -ovc lavc -lavcopts vcodec=mpeg1video -oac copy -o filename.mpg
Here is the link for mencoder, a great reference guide

Last edited by dv502; 06-28-2008 at 10:02 PM.
Old 07-06-2008, 10:49 PM   #4
Registered: Apr 2008
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convert to mpeg, but still no sound

Thanks, mencoder seems to make an mpeg from the mov file. I am still having trouble trying to get the video editor to edit it. I can open the file if I use the MOV file, but then there is no sound. If I convert it to mpeg, and then try to open it, it hangs and does not open.

1) How can I get Lives to also import the sound from the MOV file?
Old 07-07-2008, 09:05 AM   #5
Registered: Sep 2006
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I've never used Lives before, but the steps from the guide to convert video files from one format to another does work. I use it to convert some mov, avi, wmv files into mpeg1 and mpeg2 formats and I get both audio and video.

You can try these.

mencoder -of mpeg -ovc lavc -lavcopts vcodec=mpeg1video -oac mp3lame -o filename.mpg

This syntax is similar to the first one I gave you, the only change is the -oac copy to -oac mp3lame. This will convert the audio in the mov file to mp3 format.

If you have ffmpeg installed, try any of these

ffmpeg -i -target ntsc-vcd filename.mpeg
ffmpeg -i -target ntsc-svcd filename.mpeg
ffmpeg -i -target ntsc-dvd filename.mpeg

The ffmpeg command will convert the mov file to a vcd/svcd or dvd compatible MPEG1 or MPEG2 format respectively. If your country uses PAL, subsitute ntsc with pal like so, pal-dvd.

if no luck, try these suggestions

If lives can open avi files, then convert the mov file to an mpeg4 avi file

mencoder -ovc lavc -lavcopts vcodec=mpeg4 -oac mp3lame -o filename.avi
Then use lives to convert the avi file to mpeg

if unsuccessful, are you runnung the latest versions of mplayer and Lives?

Do you have the latest codecs? As of this post, the lastest codecs for mplayer is Linux x86 20071007.

Use your package manager and upadte the database, then search for mplayer and Lives. Your package manaager will tell you if any upgrades are available.

Visit the Lives website. Search for any forums, knownledge base and or support area where you can search or submit a problem. You can also submit a bug report informing them that Lives can preview a mov file with both audio and video, but during the encoding process, no audio is present. If there is no help on the website, you can download the tarball of Lives and search for the email address of the maintainer of the program. Sometimes they welcome bug reports for their programs.

Let's hope this helps.

Last edited by dv502; 07-07-2008 at 10:08 AM.
Old 07-29-2011, 11:24 PM   #6
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Registered: Jun 2011
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a way to use ffmpeg to convert from .mov to .mp4

With a new Canon digital camera that makes great videos, I was looking
to convert the Quicktime .mov file produced to a hopefully smaller
.mp4 file that can be displayed on a web page.

Here's one way to make the conversion:

ffmpeg -i -vcodec libx264 outfile.mp4
The resulting file is likely to be smaller. To adjust the quality
of the result (and its size), one can adjust the bitrate, with
something like

ffmpeg -i -vcodec libx264 -b 500k outfile.mp4
One can determine the bitrate for with just

ffmpeg -i
which will print the bitrate on the screen (along with tons of other stuff).

The .mp4 files thus produced will be suitable for web page videos.

The key for me was finding the right vcodec.


lives, mov, mpg

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