AVS Video Converter Review
AVS Video Converter is a windows application to convert videos in all popular formats, including FLV (Flash Video), which interests me the most in the context of using video on the web. FLV is the current standard format on websites and video channels, due to its small size and quality. Anyway, I have to say, this AVS application really impressed me. It does quite a good job of converting to FLV and it is very fast, even on a two-year old laptop with only 1GB ram. It is much faster then conversions from Camtasia or Adobe Flash Video encoder, and the output isn’t heavy at all. I hasten to say that Camtasia and Flash have their own merrits, incomparable with this software, naturally. This app is about video conversion, nothing more, nothing less.
I have to say that I find the default conversion profiles a bit peculiar. For example, when you select “Optimal quality for FLV”, you get a bitrate of 780Kbps, which is pretty high, and then the audio is only 64Kbps. If you want good quality visuals, you surely want good quality sound, isn’t it? To get a decent quality, the bitrate for sound should be at least 128Kbps. So, you need to adapt those standard profiles in order to get the right result. Fortunately, there are more then enough options to tweak the profiles and the application is easy to work with.
If you do not know how to tweak the profiles (read compression methods), you can test them and pick the one that gives you the best result. Since the application is fast, testing won’t take you hours. Just keep in mind that you set the frame size to “Original” if you want to keep the size of your original video as it is, because every profile comes with a standard size, depending on the format you select. Otherwise, you can go with the flow and produce movies for a wide range of applications, including iPod, Sony PS2 and PS3, mobile, DVD, etc …
With a test I did first in Camtasia and then in AVS video converter, I had exactly the same quality while the video converter was nearly 50% smaller in weight, which is a very good thing. Since the application is really quick, it is worthwhile to buy an application like this to convert your videos quickly to web format.
Any video editor I tested took much longer to export to FLV video in comparison with exporting to QuickTime or another standard format. In other words, you could export your projects to Quicktime and then use AVS Video Converter to convert them quickly to FLV.
I have not tested the other formats, but I find the converter already worthwile for its FLV export alone, since it can save you a lot of time. These are the formats it can handle: HD Video (inc. AVCHD, MPEG-2 HD and WMV HD), TOD, MOD, M2TS, AVI (DivX, Xvid, etc.), MP4 (inc. Sony PSP and Apple iPod), WMV, 3GP, QuickTime (MOV, QT), SWF, DVD, VOB, VRO, MPEG-1, 2, 4, H.263, H.264, Real Video, DVR-MS, MKV, FLV.
You can test it by downloading the demo version, which is fully functional, except that it places a watermark over the video. I would have given it a 5/5 start rating, were it not for the somewhat weird combination of settings in the FLV and SWF profiles. But apart from that, it is a great application and you can even process several videos in one go. Therefore, I give this app a 4,5/5, which it really deserves!
$59 (unlimiteds license) may seem a bit much for a simple converter but some compression codecs require a license fee which have to be included in the pricing, and because this application contains a sturdy set of compression codecs, the pricing of the AVS video Converter is just right in my opinion.