What Is Video Format For Mac

The following is a brief explanation of the different video file formats found commonly online:

The M4V file format is a video container format developed by Apple and is very similar to the MP4 format. The primary difference is that M4V files may optionally be protected by DRM copy protection. Apple uses M4V to encode video files, such as TV episodes, movies, and music videos, in its iTunes Store. How to format an drive to use with a Mac & PC. If you want to format a drive so that you can copy files between a Mac and a PC you'll want to follow the tutorial above, but choose ExFAT from the. A video file format is a type of file format for storing digital video data on a computer system. Video is almost always stored using lossy compression to reduce the file size. A video file normally consists of a container (e.g. In the Matroska format) containing video data in a video coding format (e.g. VP9 ) alongside audio data in an audio. Well, there's the 'better' answer and the 'safer' answer. Yeah, using a professional compressor program (like Apple's or Adobe's) is technically better, but if you don't have experience with encoding and what all the settings should be then the safer bet for you is to just use Handbrake and use one of the iPad or Apple TV presets.

Download bootcamp for mac. Most videos files have at least two types of file formats. First there is the container, and then the codec which is used inside the container.

The container is what describes the whole structure of the file, and specifies which codec’s are being used. The following is a list of some of the more common types of container formats:

Flash Video Format (.flv)
Because of the cross-platform availability of Flash video players, the Flash video format has become increasingly popular. Flash video is playable within Flash movies files, which are supported by practically every browser on every platform. Flash video is compact, using compression from On2, and supports both progressive and streaming downloads.

AVI Format (.avi)
The AVI format, which stands for audio video interleave, was developed by Microsoft.
It stores data that can be encoded in a number of different codec’s and can contain both audio and video data. The AVI format usually uses less compression than some similar formats and is a very popular format amongst internet users.


AVI files most commonly contain M-JPEG, or DivX codec’s, but can also contain almost any format.

The AVI format is supported by almost all computers using Windows, and can be played on various players.
Some of the most common players that support the avi format are:

  • Apple QuickTime Player (windows & Mac)
  • Microsoft Windows Media Player (Windows & Mac)
  • VideoLAN VLC media player (Windows & Mac)
  • Nullsoft Winamp
What is the best video format for both mac and pc

Quicktime Format (.mov)
The QuickTime format was developed by Apple and is a very common one. It is often used on the internet, and for saving movie and video files.

The format contains one or more tracks storing video, audio, text or effects. . It is compatible with both Mac and Windows platforms, and can be played on an Apple Quicktime player.

MP4 Format (.mp4)
This format is mostly used to store audio and visual streams online, most commonly those defined by MPEG. It Expands MPEG-1 to support video/audio 'objects', 3D content, low bit rate encoding and support for Digital Rights Management.

The MPEG-4 video format uses separate compression for audio and video tracks; video is compressed with MPEG-4 video encoding; audio is compressed using AAC compression, the same type of audio compression used in .AAC files.

The mp4 can most commonly be played on the Apple QuickTime Player or other movie players. Devices that play p4 are also known as mp4 players.

Mpg Format (.mpg)
Common video format standardized by the Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG); typically incorporates MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 audio and video compression; often used for creating downloadable movies. It can be played using Apple QuickTime Player or
Microsoft Windows Media Player.

Windows Media Video Format (.wmv)
WMV format, short for Windows Media Video was developed by Microsoft. It was originally designed for internet streaming applications, and can now cater to more specialized content. Windows Media is a common format on the Internet, but Windows Media movies cannot be played on non-Windows computer without an extra (free) component installed. Some later Windows Media movies cannot play at all on non-Windows computers because no player is available.
Videos stored in the Windows Media format have the extension .wmv.
3GP File Extension (.3gp)
The 3gp format is both an audio and video format that was designed as a multimedia format for transmitting audio and video files between 3G cell phones and the internet. It is most commonly used to capture video from your cell phone and place it online.
This format supports both Mac and windows applications and can be commonly played in the following:

  • Apple QuickTime Player
  • RealNetworks RealPlayer
  • VideoLAN VLC media player
  • MPlayer
  • MIKSOFT Mobile 3GP Converter (Windows)

Advances Streaming Format (.asf)
ASF is a subset of the wmv format and was developed by Microsoft. It is intended for streaming and is used to support playback from digital media and HTTP servers, and to support storage devices such as hard disks. It can be compressed using a variety of video codecs.

The most common files types that are contained within an ASF file are Windows Media Audio, and Windows Media video.

Real Media Format (.rm)
RealMedia is a format which was created my RealNetworks. It contains both audio and video data and typically used for streaming media files over the internet.
Realmedia can play on a wide variety of media players for both Mac and Windows platforms. The realplayer is the most compatible.

Flash Movie Format (.swf )
The Flash movie format was developed my Macromedia.

This format can include text, graphics and animation. In order to play in Web Browsers, they must have the Flash Plug-In Installed. The flash plug in comes preinstalled in the latest version of many popular Web Browsers.

The RealVideo Format
The RealVideo format was developed for the Internet by Real Media. The format is used for streaming of video at low bandwidths. This sometimes causes the quality of the videos to be reduced.

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What Video File Formats Are Compatible with and Supported by MacBook Pro/Air, iMac, Mac Pro, Mac mini?

What video format do ALL macs have? I'm creating a powerpoint presentation and am converting it to video being playable on computers so that powerpoint doesn't need to be installed on clients computers. Thank you!

Indeed, as WMV is for windows, the very native video for a Mac computer is MOV. You can import video files like MOV, QT, MPEG-4, M4V, H.264, 3GP, MP3, AAC, etc to QuickTime Player. And MOV is the most common one. Since QuickTime Player is the default player for all Mac desktop and notebook types, be it iMac, Mac Mini, MacBook or Mac Pro, the video formats supported by QuickTime will also be compatible with Mac computer running OS X v10.6.x or later, or even the latest macOS Big Sur.

Mac Video Audio Formats & Codecs Supported

  1. Mac Supported Video File Formats
    QuickTime Movie (.mov), MPEG-4 (.mp4, .m4v), MPEG-2 (OSX 10.0-10.6 are exclusive), MPEG-1, 3GPP, 3GPP2, AVCHD (OSX 10.0-10.7 are exclusive), AVI ((Motion JPEG only), DV;
  2. Mac Supported Video Codecs
    MPEG-2, MPEG-4, H.264, H.263 H.261, Apple ProRes, Apple Pixlet, Animation, Cinepak, Component Video, DV, DVC Pro 50, Graphics, Motion JPEG, Photo JPEG, Sorenson Video 2, Sorenson Video 3, H.263, H.261, Apple ProRes, Apple Pixlet, Animation, Cinepak, Component Video, DV, DVC Pro 50, Graphics, Motion JPEG, Photo JPEG, Sorenson Video 2, Sorenson Video 3
  3. Mac Supported Audio File Formats
    M4A, m4b, .m4p (all are iTunes audio), MP3, Core Audio (.caf), AIFF, AU, SD2, WAV, SND, AMR
  4. Mac Supported Audio Codecs
    AAC, HE-AAC, Apple Lossless,MP3, AMR Narrowband, MS ADPCM, QDesign Music 2, Qualcomm PureVoice (QCELP), IMA 4:1, MACE 3:1 (Mac OS X 10.6.x only), MACE 6:1 (Mac OS X 10.6.x only), ALaw 2:1, ULaw 2:1, Integer (24-bit, 32-bit), Floating Point (32-Bit,64-Bit)

What Are the Best Video Formats for Mac Computer?

Not all Mac supported video formats can be called the best video formats for Mac, but the following three surely can:

• MOV: Using the special compression algorithm developed by Apple's Mac, MOV is a very common multimedia format often used for saving movies and other video files, compatible with both Macintosh and Windows platforms. It is the born video format for QuickTIme of Mac.

• MP4: MP4, as an abbreviated term for MPEG-4 Part 14, is an international standard that has more support. It is a container format, allowing a combination of audio, video, subtitles and still images to be held in the one single file. It also allows for advanced content such as 3D graphics, menus and user interactivity. MP4 files are supported by many video programs and various hardware devices, Sony PSP and various DVD players, most DirectShow/Video for Windows codec packs.

• M4V: M4V video file format is developed by Apple Inc., who uses it to flag as a video file and attach it to iTunes, by encoding TV episodes, movies, and music videos in the iTunes Store under official DRM copy protection; therefore, put it in other way, the copy-protected Apple video using FairPlay DRM copyright protection on the basis of MPEG-4 AVC video compression. It can be played directly by QuickTime Player, VLC, RealPlayer, DAPlayer, MPayer and some other HD video players.

But please note that both the MOV and MP4 container formats can use the same MPEG-4 formats, so almost they are interchangeable in a QuickTime-only environment.

How to Make Mac Supports More Videos?

Indeed, the supported video formats of Mac QuickTime can be extended by use of some third-party codec plug-ins. But perhaps you need to install a pile of such components one by one to make it more supportive. And in many cases, users are afraid of the adware and malware. So there is another once-and-for-all way to make all kinds of videos playable on MacBook, iMac, MacMini and Mac Pro running even on macOS 11 Big Sur or lower, no matter what version of OS it is running – by converting AVI (DivX, Xvid), MPEG,WMV, AVCHD, MTS/M2TS, VOB, FLV, RM, RMVB, WebM, Google TV, 3GP, etc to Mac supported videos with the best Mac video converter in the following procedure.

A. If you want to convert videos on Mac, just download WinX HD Video Converter for Mac on any type of Mac computer;
B. If you want to convert videos existing on your Windows to Mac videos, just download WinX HD Video Converter Deluxe on PC.

Their operations of converting one video to Mac accept one work in the same way. Here please allow me to take converting MTS to Mac supported video M4V as an illustration:

Step 1: Click '+Video' button, browse in the computer, find an MKV file as the source video, click Open and start importing it;

Step 2: Navigate to video target format section, where you can choose either M4V (H.264) or MOV/MP4 Video (MPEG4/H264) as the output format and click OK. You can choose among LQ, standard and HQ when double click the format to pop up a parameters control;

Step 3: Hit RUN button on the right to start convert the video to be Mac compatible.

Related Mac Video Formats Solutions

What can I do if I need to shift my videos from Windows to Mac?
Convert MKV, M2TS, AVI, WMV, ASF and so on to MOV or any Mac supported formats with WinX HD Video Converter Deluxe on Windows PC, and transfer the videos to Mac. Similarly, you can move these video files to your Mac at first step, and then convert them to Mac videos with the help of WinX HD Video Converter for Mac.

Will my PC play the Mac videos, or vice versa?
Answer: Many windows computers will play mov videos, but some fail and need a plug-in to do it. The most universal codec there is would be avi-xvid. Granted this is more intel than mac, but mac will play it. This is your best idea for a cross platform, go with AVI, open the QT Player> Edit > QT Preferences> File types.

What format to make my powerpoint presentation compatible with my Mac?
As explained above, MOV, MP4 (H.264) and M4V are the most recommended formats for Mac. VideoProc (for Windows) or VideoProc for Mac will help you convert all incompatible videos to be Mac supported videos with suitable specifications.

Still have question on Mac media formats? Please feel free to Mail Us >>

VideoProc - One-stop Video Process Software
A fast video/audio/DVD converter, a video editor, a video compressor, a video recorder, and YouTube video downloader.
You can convert any 4K, HD and standard videos to Mac acceptable files for perfect playback, download online video on Mac, and record Mac or iPhone screen with ease.

For PC and Mac only. Go to mobile page.

About the Author

Matthew Palmer@matthew_palmer

Best Format For Video Files

Matthew Palmer is a seasoned content creator with over 10 years of experience in Windows at large. He has been specialized in almost any technology with Windows OS and written thousands of new articles, covering everything from in-depth features of new laptops, latest GPU/CPU PC hardware, games, to software related. While digging into new techs, she continues enjoying painting and comics.

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