Two Ways to Convert Videos for Free on Your Mac

Two Ways to Convert Videos For Free on Your Mac

Even if you don’t often work on video producing or editing, you will occasionally find yourself looking for ways to convert videos from one format to another. It usually happens when you wish to watch a video on your mobile device, and it just does not support as many video formats as your Mac does. While the VLC player lets you play almost all the video formats on your Mac, not all of your devices may be compatible with the video player and thus cannot play the video you are really wanting to watch.

There are dozen of solutions for you to convert videos on your Mac, and most of them involve using external third-party apps. Fortunately, Mac OS X comes preloaded with the functionality to convert videos without any hassle. Here’s how you can convert your videos without using third-party apps.

1. Using QuickTime to Convert Videos on a Mac

The first way is to use the built-in QuickTime app to do the conversion. The QuickTime app for Mac allows playing and conversion of many video formats. Here’s how you can use it.

1. Open the folder where the video file that you want to convert to another format is located. Right click on the file and select “Open With” followed by “QuickTime Player.” It will open the selected video file in the QuickTime Player app.

Right-click a file, select 'Open With' followed by 'QuickTime Player.'

2. When QuickTime launches, click on “File” followed by “Export.” Here you can see some of the popular video formats you can export your video to. For instance, if you wish to see this video on your iPad, simply choose that option and the video will be saved in a format that is supported by the iPad.

When QuickTime launches, click on 'File' followed by 'Export.'

You can, however, manually specify a format if it does not already exist in the menu. When exporting the file, simply type in the three character format at the end of the file name and the app will do the rest of the job for you.

Type in the three character format at the end of the file name.

That should do the video conversion on your Mac without you having to install a third-party app.

2. Using Finder to Convert Videos on a Mac

Although Finder is just a file management tool on your Mac, its context menu does contain some useful options that can help you get your job done. One of these options lets you quickly convert a video to another format so you can then play it on your desired device.

1. Launch the folder where your video file is located.

2. Right click on the file and select “Encode Selected Video Files.” It lets you encode videos right from your current Finder window.

Right-click a file and select 'Encode Selected Video Files.'

3. A dialog box should appear asking about output of the video that you wish to convert. Choose the settings that you find appropriateĀ for your video file and click “Continue.”

Choose the settings that you find appropriate.

You should find the converted video file in the same folder as your source file.


Knowing these little secrets of converting videos really helps you avoid the hassle of choosing and installing a third-party app and learning how to do the conversion. The above two ways should be useful for you the next time you want to convert a video. If you know of any other ways to convert videos without using third-party apps, do let us know in the comments.

Mahesh Makvana
Mahesh Makvana

Mahesh Makvana is a freelance tech writer who's written thousands of posts about various tech topics on various sites. He specializes in writing about Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android tech posts. He's been into the field for last eight years and hasn't spent a single day without tinkering around his devices.

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