Tip: How to encode a video to H.264 (MP4) or VP8 (Webm)

I don’t know what language you talk today, but if you are looking for a simple and free tool to convert videos to H.264 (.mp4) or VP8 (.webm), here’s a quick tip.

  • Install VLC Media Player
  • On the menu, click “Media->Convert/Save”
  • Under the “File Selection” panel, add your video
  • At the bottom, pick “Convert” (or press Alt+C)
  • Choose a destination (you will need to specify the extension, for instance test.mp4)
  • Under profile, select “Video – H.264 + AAC (MP4)” (default option) or “Video – VP8 + Vorbis (Webm)”. Other options are available.
  • Click “Start” and you are done!


Find more info about the <video> tag on my previous post.

Comments (3)

  1. Mike Taylor says:

    Cool! When can we expect IE9 to natively support WebM?

  2. dave_shame says:

    You forgot to include the part where you obtain an MPEG-LA license in order to use unlicensed open source software to create h.264 content. Unless you want to be in violation of their patents as the encoder and all your viewers to be in violation for watching a piece of media that was encoded with a non-licensed encoder on their decoders which are only licensed for their personal use with media that was encoded with a properly licensed encoder.

    The WebM instructions are great though, thanks.

  3. John says:

    It would be really cool if MS supported first party converters. I emailed the Windows Live Movie Maker team about adding a "save for web" option that encodes in H.264.

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