Converting media file types

Converting media file types

Media files come in a variety of different formats and file types, with many of them designed for particular purposes such as photos, animations or streaming over the internet. Converting between file types can help you get media that works best for your purpose, like shrinking a file to be able to post it online or getting maximum quality for watching on your phone. Software like Adobe Media Encoder lets you convert media files between a wide range of formats while controlling the quality of your finished video. This section will also introduce some of the most common media file types as well as some copyright considerations.

Changing the format of a video

Accessing Adobe Media Encoder

At Sheffield Hallam University, you can access Adobe Media Encoder using AppsAnywhere.

Using Adobe Media Encoder

This short animation from the official Adobe support pages for Encoder gives a quick overview which introduces the interface and walks through locating a video file, previewing it, choosing an output and encoding it.

Further information about each panel of the Encoder interfaces is available on the Adobe website.

Linkedin Learning has a slighter longer overview of Adobe Media Encoder starting from the assumption that you are wanting to upload videos to the web. The description of Encoder as a “Swiss Army Knife” is very apt.

Copyright considerations

So changing the format of a media file so that you can use it in a different context is both useful and quite straightforward to do. But if the file that you are encoding is not one that you yourself have created, you must also consider whether there are any copyright implications in your re-use of that content.

This SHU libguide gives some more detailed information about the copyright of images and video in a UK context, gives guidance about some potential sources and provides links to sources of further information.

Free alternatives to Adobe Media Encoder

As you have seen, Encoder is available at SHU and very easy to use. However, if you are outside the university and have access to a computer where you are able to download programs, you may like to investigate some free alternatives.