4 Fast Ways to Convert AVI to MP4 on Mac (Even Over 200MB)

Megan Charles
time May 12, 2021 Preview 5.6K
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AVI (audio and video interleave), introduced by Microsoft, is the standard video format for Windows machines. Not all codecs contained in AVI are accepted by Apple devices and software. So you may often not be capable of opening AVI files on Mac.

MP4, with maximum compatibility and smaller size than AVI, is the most universal video format.

Follow the steps in this article to convert AVI to MP4 on Mac, 4 methods provided.


Battle of the video format: AVI vs. MP4

  AVI MP4
Developer Microsoft Moving Picture Experts Group
Initial release 1992 2001
Video quality Excellent (slightly better than MP4) Excellent
File size Large Relatively small
Compatibility Microsoft devices, Windows-based players, etc. Almost all devices and players

Convert Large AVI to MP4 on Mac without Losing Quality

The best-recommended software to turn AVI into MP4 on Mac at super fast speed is Cisdem Video Converter. It also supports video conversion between all kinds of SD/HD/4K formats, such as MKV to MOV, H264 to HEVC, MP4 to MP3, YouTube to MP4, AVI to Android, etc. To facilitate multiple conversions of AVI files at once, batch processing is allowed.

Steps to batch convert AVI to MP4 on Mac (with h264 codec or h265 codec):

STEP 1. Load AVI files

Cisdem AVI converter for Mac has three interfaces. Drag-n-drop your AVI videos from local folder to the first one for video conversion.

import avi files

STEP 2. Choose the desired output format – MP4

Click the format profile icon, and a drop-down list appears to bring up the format profile options. Pick up "General Video" > "MP4 Video” or “MP4 HEVC Video" (amazing visual quality while saving 50% bit rate).

It also covers a wide range of available pre-set devices, choose the Apple iPhone/iPad series, Android smartphones, game consoles, etc. as you like.

choose mp4

STEP 3. Edit AVI files (optional)

The program has useful video editing capabilities: crop AVI; create special effect/watermark/subtitle; etc. Click the icon to enter the video-editing mode.

edit avi files

STEP 4. Convert AVI to MP4 on Mac

Via “Output” at the bottom, choose the destination path to save the converted files. Finally, click the conversion icon icon to begin converting AVI files to MP4 in bulk.

Free Download


How to Convert AVI to MP4 on Mac Using a Pre-installed App?

iMovie is a Apple-based video editor with the ability to edit video footage and export it as MP4 or MOV.

But not all types of AVI videos are supported by iMovie. AVI is a multimedia container format, not a specific type of file. It can be compressed by a quantity of codecs. Those AVI videos encoded with Indeo, native DivX, Cinepak, ALaw 2:1, etc. can’t be put onto iMovie.

So before turning AVI into MP4 on Mac, check if it’s an iMovie compatible video codec.

1. Launch iMovie. Drag and drop AVI clips into it.

Before macOS transitions to 64-bit technology, the AVI file imported into iMovie requires conversion. The converted format in iMovie library will be compatible with versions of macOS after Mojave. Note: macOS Catalina doesn't support such conversion. You can click "Convert" or "Skip".

convert avi in imovie to be compatible with future version

2. In the top menu, click “File” > "Share" > "File…". Alternatively, click the "Share" button in the upper right corner > "File".

export file 01

export file 02

3. In the file dialog box that pops up, adjust the resolution, quality and compression settings.

Don’t set the quality as “Best (ProRes), otherwise the output format is MOV.

edit imovie file panel and save

4. Hit on "Next", name the exported iMovie MP4 file and specify the location where to save it.

5. Click “Save”.


How to Turn AVI into MP4 on Mac with a Command Line Toolbox?

As a powerful command-line tool, FFmpeg allows you to convert/stream/record video and audio file. Its advanced codec library - libavcodec ensures high portability and codec quality.

To use this open source AVI to MP4 converter for Mac, you must know some basic coding techniques. Otherwise, you won't be able to start. The installation of FFmpeg is already very complicated for technical novices.

1. Follow the tutorial to install FFmpeg on Mac.

2. Find Terminal app and initiate it.

3. Drag and drop FFmpeg to the Terminal.​

import ffmpeg

4. Type the command –i. Add the original AVI video into terminal. Then enter xxx(the output file name).mp4.

convert avi to mp4 mac ffmpeg

Individual AVI file conversion: -i input.flv xxx.mp4.

Batch processing multiple AVI files: for i in *.avi; do name=`echo "$i" | cut -d'.' -f1` echo "$name" ffmpeg -i "$i" "${name}.mp4" done or for i in *.avi; do ffmpeg -i "$i" "${i%.*}.mp4"; done.

5. Press the “Enter” key to transcode AVI videos to MP4.


Free Online AVI to MP4 Converters for Mac

Online video converter is also a popular way for AVI conversion. Video.online-convert.com is free online file converter. It has 7 parts: Audio converter, Video converter, Image converter, Document converter, E-book converter, Archive converter and Hash generator.

  1. Open https://video.online-convert.com/convert-to-mp4 in your web browser.
  2. Click "Choose Files" to upload AVI resources from your Mac. You can also drop the file directly onto the green box area or import it from the cloud storage.avi to mp4 converter online free mac 01
  3. (Optional) Scroll down. Customize the file settings.
  4. Hit "Start conversion" to turn AVI into MP4 online.
  5. Download the MP4 file on Mac.avi to mp4 converter online free mac 02

You can try this free online tool to convert AVI to MP4 Mac, but don’t ignore its limits and drawbacks:

  • The total file size of per conversion can’t exceed 100 MB. That means you can't convert more than 100MB AVI file, let alone 1GB.
  • Convert up to 20 videos within 24 hours
  • Convert up to 5 AVI files at the same time
  • You have to upload your video online for conversion. The video may be copied or leaked by others. Thus don't convert confidential or important videos online.

People Also Ask

1) Can I turn AVI into MP4 on Mac with VLC?

Yes, but not straightly.

Although VLC gives you an output option: Video- H.264 + MP3 (MP4), it's actually M4V. The M4V and MP4 formats are very similar. The main difference is that M4V might optionally be encrypted by DRM copy protection.

You can change the file extension to .mp4, but the video and audio are often corrupted or coming with some serious lagging. If this happens, try to customize the profile:

  • Video codec H.264, keep original video trackmaintain video track vlc
  • Audio codec MPEG 4 Audio (AAC), keep original audio trackmaintain audio track vlc

In addition, when converting large AVI files (more than 500 MB), VLC stops short of the full conversion.

Obviously, VLC is not a good AVI to MP4 converter for Mac to get the task done.

2) Can HandBrake transcode AVI video to MP4?

HandBrake is a free video transcoder to convert videos from nearly any format including AVI, unprotected DVD, and BluRay sources. It lets you add multiple AVI files to queue, and transcode them to MP4 in batches.

bulk convert avi to mp4 mac handbrake

But it's not a perfect AVI to MP4 transcoder for Mac.

  • Can only convert AVI to two formats, MP4 and MKV (no more output options).
  • The conversion speed is a bit slow.
  • Even with H265 compression, the file size increased after conversion. I tested a 26.6MB AVI file. Through Handbrake x265 transcoding, the output file size is 64.2MB (more than twice the size of the original), whereas the size is 20.4MB (no quality loss) via Cisdem Video Converter.

3) Can QuickTime convert AVI to MP4 on Mac?

Yes, you can do it, but two conditions need to be met:

  • Use QuickTime 7 Pro (paid and not available on macOS Mojave or later)
  • The AVI can be imported to QuickTime 7 Pro. AVI has dozens of codecs in hundreds of combinations, some of which are not supported by Apple software. (Refer to the iMovie mentioned above)

If both of these met, then you can:

  1. Open AVI in QT 7 pro.
  2. Navigate to the “File” menu.
  3. Click “Export” to reveal the format list.
  4. Choose “Movie to MPEG-4”. Necessarily, fine-tune the video parameters.turn avi into mp4 mac quicktime 7 pro
  5. Save the video.

QuickTime X doesn't offer video conversion option. However, when you open a playable AVI file, it will automatically convert AVI to MOV.

convert avi to mov mac quicktime x

4) How to open AVI on Mac?

For those who are using Mac OS X 10.4.7+ and QuickTime 7 or previous, you are able to install Perian - the third-party component packages of QuickTime Player.

The best way is to look for alternative to QuickTime. Both VLC and Cisdem Video Player are free to play AVI files on Mac.


Conclusion

The post shares the fastest and best AVI to MP4 converter for Mac. To be honest, freeware not ideal choices due to the slow speed, low quality, complex operation, or limits. And online converters will let out your personal information. I believe a professional video converter app is needed, which is safe, more stable and gives you higher quality than other tools.

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Megan Charles
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Megan has an impressive deal of experience with Mac software and has the ability to explain tech stuff in a simplified, straightforward and easy to understand way.

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