About Video Formats
Using this blog I link to a variety of videos that I’ve edited and uploaded (mainly of my kids and other family events). With each one I release them in multiple formats which inevitably causes confusion. I’ve written this page to help you decide which to download.
- QuickTime – Freely available from Apple QuickTime will play any of the downloadable files. If you have a Mac, have iTunes, or use an iPod, chances are you have QuickTime installed. You can download it for free here
- Windows Media Player – Available on all Microsoft Windows based PC’s Windows Media Player will play back the Windows Media files. I recommend you upgrade to the newest version of Windows Media Player (download it here).
- VLC Player – VLC Player is a free player that will play either the .wmv or .mp4 files. You can download it here
Downloadable Formats – These are videos that you can download and playback on your computer using QuickTime (on a Mac or PC) or Windows Media Player (on a PC)
- MP4 Files (playable in QuickTime or VLC)
- SD-iPod – This is the safest bet for anyone, as even an older machine should be able to handle this quality. It’s relatively small, but still clear and easy to read any text in the video. This file also should play on most mobile devices (iPods, phones, etc.)
- iPhone4-DVD – This is higher resolution format that will play on smaller screens (laptops) and the iPhone4.
- High Definition Formats (720p/1080p) – These high definition formats will require a larger screen and a pretty powerful computer to play them back, but they look great! You can look at Apple’s recommendations to see what format your system can handle.
- Windows Media (playable in Windows Media Player)
- SD – A small, lower resolution file that will also play on mobile devices
- HD – A higher resolution file for playback on PCs.
ISO Images – These are files that you download to your computer and can then burn to disc for playback in your DVD or Blu-ray player. If you have any sort of disc burning program (on Windows) or own a Mac you’ll be able to burn these images to disc without trouble.
- DVD – The DVD format will playback in your DVD player.
- AVCHD – This format puts High Definition Video onto a DVD or Dual-Layer DVD for playback in your Blu-ray player. The advantage here is that you can burn HD video onto standard DVDs (which are much cheaper) and without the need of a Blu-ray burner (Which are expensive)
- Blu-ray – This format puts High Definition Video onto a Blu-ray disc for playback in your Blu-ray player. This will give you the best possible quality.