Among my laundry list of complaints about the internet is how many different audio, video, and image file formats are required. MP3 is nearly universal for audio, but not the best for quality. Even Flash video player, once the de facto video standard, doesn’t work on iPad, iPhone, or Android devices.
That means moving audio and video files from one device to another often requires a converter. Even photos and other images need conversions. The good news is that many Mac apps, iMovie, for example, have built-in conversion functions so a movie will play on a Mac, PC, and can be converted to play on iPhone or iPad. Ditto for Photos which exports an image to multiple file formats.
Otherwise, you’re stuck with the need to have a separate audio video converter. Fortunately, plenty are available. Some have a price tag but they’re easy to use. Others are free but overly complex. For the budget minded, Adapter is the freeware Mac and Windows app that converts audio, video, and image files. It couldn’t be much easier to use considering all the behind-the-scenes complexity which does not get into your face.
Drag and drop your file to Adapter, select a Destination (even sends files to iTunes), change the name, and click the Start button.
Adapter uses the popular FFmpeg, the freeware converter app, and VLC, a QuickTime Player-like player. And, fortunately again, Adapter does the downloading and installing for you, so all you have to do is wait a minute or two to begin using the app to convert files.
Adapter converts video on your Mac to files which run on iPhone, iPod, PSP, BlackBerry, even Android. Your Mac can preview the files in real time while they’re being converted. That means any format, any resolution, any aspect ratio, any frame rate, any audio format. All easily converted and previewed.
Adapter becomes converter and player. And it converts dozens of file formats, many I’ve never heard of (that’s the beauty of FFmpeg). It lets you preview the output, trim the size, and make it exportable to iTunes and iPhone. And it converts in batches so you can let the Mac do the work without babysitting.
Images work much the same way as audio and video conversions. Any format, any resolution and size, even animated GIFs, and built-in tools make it easy to add audio tracks, overlay text to the video or image, drop in a watermark, and convert the whole shebang in batches.
At first glance, Adapter may seem remarkably simple, especially when considering the dozens of different file formats that can be converted. There are plenty of options for resolution, frame rate, and more, if you’re inclined to get your geek on.
Regardless, you can’t beat the price.