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  1. #1
    Converting AVCHD
    vansmith's Avatar
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    Converting AVCHD
    Hey everyone,

    I'll admit right from the get go that A/V is outside of my comfort zone so be gentle.

    I'm working with a few people on a research project that involved, in part, some interviews. These interviews were recorded on some hi-def cameras that gave me some delightful (and I don't really mean delightful) AVCHD files. For those of us who use a Mac (this is a university so most of us), this isn't a problem since QT can open and play them without any issue. However, Windows users seem to be having some troubles playing them. As such, I'd like to convert them into a more platform neutral format. I'd also like to do this since the video files are huge (one is 16GB, the other 12GB) and ideally, part of these would be used online (so I need something smaller to work with).

    I tried using Handbrake since apparently it can handle AVCHD files. As I quickly learned, that's not the case. I chose the videos as the source and it failed to do anything. So, HB is a no-go. Ideas? Suggestions?

    - van
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  2. #2
    Converting AVCHD
    JohnCL's Avatar
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    Do you have the AVCHD Converter app from the Mac App Store?
    12" rMB 256gb | Mac Pro 3,1 2x 2.8GHz | Dual 2.0GHz PowerMac G5 | 24" ACD | 64GB Verizon iPhone 6 Plus | iPad Air 2 64GB LTE | iPad mini 2 16GB | Gen 7 Nano | Gen 4 iPod Touch | TV1 | TV3 | Watch Sport 42mm Space Gray

  3. #3
    Converting AVCHD
    vansmith's Avatar
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    I don't because ideally, I'm looking to do this for free especially since I'm fairly confident that this is the only time I'll ever need this app.
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  4. #4
    Converting AVCHD
    JohnCL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
    I don't because ideally, I'm looking to do this for free especially since I'm fairly confident that this is the only time I'll ever need this app.
    I understand that. Right now it is a $14 app. I got it for free one time during a promotion, and have used it a couple of times. It could do what you need for conversion, and then trim it down in another app.

    Hope you find something...
    12" rMB 256gb | Mac Pro 3,1 2x 2.8GHz | Dual 2.0GHz PowerMac G5 | 24" ACD | 64GB Verizon iPhone 6 Plus | iPad Air 2 64GB LTE | iPad mini 2 16GB | Gen 7 Nano | Gen 4 iPod Touch | TV1 | TV3 | Watch Sport 42mm Space Gray

  5. #5
    Converting AVCHD
    cwa107's Avatar
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    Actually $5 - https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/avch...15151220?mt=12

    But the developer name is kind of concerning to me. Makes me wonder if this is another iSkySoft-type product (i.e. borrowed code morphed to look like a legit product and promoted via spam.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  6. #6
    Converting AVCHD
    JohnCL's Avatar
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    I have the one by iFunia. That is the $14 app I was looking at.

    https://itun.es/us/VdTlz.m #MacAppStore
    12" rMB 256gb | Mac Pro 3,1 2x 2.8GHz | Dual 2.0GHz PowerMac G5 | 24" ACD | 64GB Verizon iPhone 6 Plus | iPad Air 2 64GB LTE | iPad mini 2 16GB | Gen 7 Nano | Gen 4 iPod Touch | TV1 | TV3 | Watch Sport 42mm Space Gray

  7. #7
    Converting AVCHD
    cwa107's Avatar
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    Oops, my mistake. Thanks for the clarification John.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  8. #8
    Converting AVCHD
    vansmith's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, $14 is worse than $5.

    The frustrating thing here is the very simple fact that Handbrake is supposed to be abel to convert the AVCHD files. Any other ideas?
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  9. #9
    Converting AVCHD
    JohnCL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vansmith View Post
    Unfortunately, $14 is worse than $5.

    The frustrating thing here is the very simple fact that Handbrake is supposed to be abel to convert the AVCHD files. Any other ideas?
    This is the only other freebie that I know of off hand. Maybe worth a look.
    12" rMB 256gb | Mac Pro 3,1 2x 2.8GHz | Dual 2.0GHz PowerMac G5 | 24" ACD | 64GB Verizon iPhone 6 Plus | iPad Air 2 64GB LTE | iPad mini 2 16GB | Gen 7 Nano | Gen 4 iPod Touch | TV1 | TV3 | Watch Sport 42mm Space Gray

  10. #10
    Converting AVCHD
    vansmith's Avatar
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    Well, it looks like I might have found the solution and it was staring me in the face the whole time. It would seem that I can just use QuickTime's export option to encode it as a more friendly format. Even though this may not cut down the size (don't know yet, it's going to take a few hours), it will give me something more friendly.

    Thanks for the help!
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  11. #11
    Converting AVCHD
    dtravis7's Avatar
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    Van, I was going to suggest the QT Pro Export. Glad you found it.

    Also just a note, I have no camera here that saves AVCHD but found a site with some small demo AVCHV files and tried that Free converter. It seems to do the job very well and you can get the size way down. Just a note for someone else looking for a converter.

    Van, did you try exporting one on QTPro? How did it look? I know way back I was doing H264 files using QTPro and one of the save formats (AVI I believe) and it looked very grainy.

  12. #12
    Converting AVCHD
    vansmith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtravis7 View Post
    Van, did you try exporting one on QTPro? How did it look? I know way back I was doing H264 files using QTPro and one of the save formats (AVI I believe) and it looked very grainy.
    I'm going to give it a try tomorrow since the files are huge (12 and 16GB a piece) and the encode is going to take hours. I'll let you know.

    At this point, I'm more concerned about playability on Windows and OS X than anything. If I lose some quality, I'm willing to take that as a sacrifice.
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  13. #13
    Converting AVCHD
    dtravis7's Avatar
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    They should play fine in Windows. Hope all works out for you.

  14. #14
    Converting AVCHD
    chas_m's Avatar
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    Another option that could be considered is MPEG Streamclip. Despite the name I think it handles a wider variety of formats, and is as you know free.

  15. #15
    Converting AVCHD
    vansmith's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tip. I tried MS and it didn't seem to like the AVCHD files either (why is beyond me).

    I think I may have an explanation but I'm not certain here. It would seem that many of the apps that purport to convert AVCHD files only support a subset (AVCHD lite). Evidently, it would seem that my files are not "lite" (oh how little I know about video...).
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