There are a lot of different types of video formats out there for you to choose from – AVI, MPEG-4, MKV, and WMV, to name a few. It can sometimes get confusing knowing what file types to use and whether you’ll need to convert your video to have a compatible file. Today, we are going to focus on discussing two video formats: MOV and MP4. We’ll look into the difference between a MOV media file and an MP4 video. And show you how to convert MOV to MP4.
What Exactly Is an MP4?
In more technical terms, an MP4 is a digital container file that holds compressed video data along with other data required to play the video. To put it another, more simple way, MP4 files are commonly used for video storage and are compatible with a wide range of devices and media players.
What Is a MOV?
A MOV file is a video file format developed by Apple for use with its QuickTime Player application.
Is There a Difference Between MOV and MP4?
Unlike MP4, MOV is a proprietary file format created for Apple QuickTime, whereas MP4 is the international standard.
In general, MP4 files are smaller and more compressed, while MOV files are usually larger and are of high quality. That’s why most streaming platforms recommend MP4 files instead of MOV files.
MOV files have a higher bitrate and less compression than MP4. Because of that, most cameras and drones record in MP4 format. On the flip side, despite the increased file size, MOV is better for editing than MP4 because it lacks compression. But since MOV files are designed specifically for QuickTime, these are better suited for video editing on a Mac.
When it comes to uploading videos to hosting platforms, how do you know which format you should use? Well, both MOV and MP4 formats are supported by the most popular platforms. However, most platforms recommend converting videos to MP4 before uploading them.
MP4 files, for example, are supported by video hosting platforms like YouTube and Vimeo. While platforms, such as Wistia, suggest using MP4, they also accept MOV. It’s important to check the requirements before uploading because they do vary.
Here’s How to Convert a MOV File To an MP4 Using iMovie
If you own a Mac, do you know how to convert MOV to MP4 in iMovie? If not, it’s incredibly easy! If you want to convert a video without paying for software, here are the steps:
First, you’ll want to launch iMovie. Then go to the File menu and choose New Movie from the drop-down menu. By using the import media button, you can import the video that needs to be converted to MP4. After importing the file, right-click it and select File > Share > File. This will open a popup window with several options to change the export settings like quality, resolution, and so on, then click Next. Select a location for saving your video (by default, it is saved to the Movies directory).
How to Convert MOV to MP4 Using a Video Converter
If you’re feeling pretty confident with converted files and you want to do an mp4 conversion using online converters, look no further. There are 3 easy steps for converting MOV video files to MP4 with CloudConvert MP4 converter:
1. You can convert a MOV video to MP4 with CloudConvert by selecting the MOV file and clicking the Select File button.
2. The video will be converted to MP4 after you click the Convert button.
3. When you’re finished, click the green Download button to save your video as an MP4 file.
Voila! The file conversion is complete.
How to Convert Video for Windows Using VLC Media Player
If you’re using a Windows PC, MOVs may not be the best format since they can’t be played by Windows Media Player (apart from Windows Media Player version 12). However, VLC can help you convert MOVs to MP4.
Simply launch VLC, open the media menu, and select Convert/Save. You will see a new window where you can add files. You will need to select the Convert/Save option and then choose Video – H.264 + MP3 (MP4) from the drop-down menu. To save the file, click Save, then Start, and enter the file name and location.
Note about the output format: VLC program doesn’t automatically switch the file extension, so it’s important to remember to change MOV to MP4.
That’s it! Now you’ll have your converted MP4.
How to Convert MOV to MP4: iOS
The thing about having a video recorder in our pockets is that it becomes our go-to for filming video. The problem is that iOS devices record in the default MOV video format, which, as we’ve seen, isn’t always compatible with other software. Using the Media Converter app, you can easily convert videos to MP4 for free. This app doesn’t add a watermark to your video, which is one of its major benefits.
If you have an iPhone or iPad, check out this quick video conversion tutorial:
- Open the Media Converter app.
- To import files, click the (+) button.
- Choosing Import From Photo Library will open the photo library.
- Make sure you have selected the video that you wish to convert. Then tap Done.
- Tap the imported file in the Files list.
- Choose the Convert Video (Trim) option.
- Choose MP4 as the Format option.
- The Convert button (the icon that looks like an arrow coming out of a box) will appear.
- Now that your video has been converted, it appears in the Files list with the extension .mp4
How to Convert MOV to MP4: Android
Android users will love the VidSoftLabs converter. You can convert videos, adjust aspect ratios, compress, join, and stabilize, among other features. This app not only converts MOV to MP4 on Android but also converts it to multiple video formats and presets for Windows, Apple, Xbox, etc. The premium version is required to transcode 1080p and 4K MOV videos. Otherwise, the MP4 video will have a maximum resolution of 960p.
- Launch VidSoftLab Video Converter.
- To convert videos, click the Video Converter tool.
- From your Android phone, select a MOV video. In the lower right corner, tap the arrow.
- Select the format you want. It’s fine to leave the Common option as it is and then tap on the arrow again.
- Make sure the video and audio settings are configured according to your preferences and then continue.
- To change the video format on Android, tap the Right button.
Open-Source Operating System: Handbrake
HandBrake is an open-source transcoder for Linux, Mac, and Windows. You can edit videos with HandBrake for free. Basically, its main function is to convert videos from supported source formats into MP4 and MKV.
- Install and launch HandBrake. When you launch HandBrake, you should see a Source Selection page. Drag and drop your MOV file into the program or do so by clicking File.
- If the Source Selection page does not appear, go to File > Open Source (or press Alt + O) to get to it.
- Select your preferred option from the Presets menu. You can also leave it at the default Fast 1080p30, which is the best setting for MP4 conversion.
- You'll see MP4 as a Format option under the Summary tab; select that.
- Choose a destination folder and rename your file by clicking the Browse button. And make sure to change the file extension to ".mp4" if it does not already have one!
- When you’re ready to start, click the Start Encoding button.
How do you feel about converting MOV to MP4? Has this ever been a problem for you when recording or uploading videos? If so, let us know! Feel free to contact us if you are ready to outsource your video production and conversion needs.