Can I Convert MKV to MP4 using VLC on Mac El Capitan?

Do you have a video in MKV file and you can’t open it because some program (like Sony Vegas Pro) doesn’t support this format? If so, you probably wonder how to convert it into some different format like the common MP4 format. 

Q: “Handbrake doesn’t work. Don’t know why, tired 32 and 64 and neither will even open. Looking for a quick way to convert MKV to MP4, I know NOTHING about this process except I have MKV files I want to watch on devices that only take MP4. The converters I’ve tried take forever but I’ve read there’s a really fast way that doesn’t involve completely converting the file.” 

Q: “How do you convert MKV files to MP4 files with VLC?” 

Faced with the problems, I just discovered a way to do this. To understand this method, first you need to know that media file formats are just containers (for example, MKV is Matroska). Each format encapsulates a set of streams, usually one video and one audio stream. Now, each stream is encoded using some specific codec. There may be various codecs used, but for the file I needed to convert, Media Player Classic (my favorite movie player, installed with K-Lite Codec Pack) shows following information after selecting File > Properties: 

Type: Matroska 
Video: MPEG4 Video (H264) 720×400 25fps [V: English [eng] (h264 main L4.0, yuv420p, 720×400) [default]] 
Audio: AAC 44100Hz stereo [A: aac lc, 44100 Hz, stereo [default]] 

MPEG4 Video is the same codec that may be used with MP4 file format! It means we could convert (“repack”) the file to just different container format, rewriting streams as-is without actually converting video or audio – which should be very fast (converting a long movie takes only few seconds) and wouldn’t cause any quality loss. 

To do that, I used VLC media player. This program has its own set of codecs for many video and audio formats, so it doesn’t depend on codecs installed in Windows. The player is actually just an overlay on top of a powerful library that can also do different things, like streaming video over network (that’s probably where the company name “VideoLAN” comes from) or convert files. 

Option 1. Convert an MKV file to MP4 with VLC 

  • Run “VLC media player”.
  • From main menu select “Media” > “Convert / Save…”.
  • On “File” tab, click “Add…” button.
  • Choose you MKV file. After that, it should be added to the list. (Alternatively, you can drag&drop a file into the list.)
  • Click “Convert/Save” button.
  • Select Profile: “Video – H.264 + MP3 (MP4)”.
  • Click on the icon button that has hint: “Edit selected profile”.
  • On “Encapsulation” tab, leave “MP4/MOV” selected.
  • On “Video codec” tab, check both “Video” and “Keep original video track”.
  • On “Audio codec” tab, similarly select both “Audio” and “Keep original audio track”.
  • Click “Save” button.
  • In “Destination” selection, click “Browse” button to select directory and file name for you destination MP4 file.
  • Click “Start” button.
  • Observe progress bar in the main window as file is converted.
  • After that, my VLC (version 2.2.1) seems to hang in an infinite loop so I have to kill it using system “Task Manager”, but it doesn’t matter – the destination file is already created.

Option 2. Convert MKV to MP4 with a VLC alternative 

You can convert your MKV files to MP4 for the purposes of editing and sharing with Pavtube Video Converter for Mac. You will be able to edit your files on programs like Final Cut Pro and iMovie while sharing is possible with sites like Facebook and YouTube. It can convert MKV to MP4 and other popular conversion like AVI to MP4, MOV to MP4, FLV to MP4, MP4 to MKV, H.264 MP4 to H.265 MP4MKV to DVD player, MP4 to iTunesMP4 to iMovie and any conversions you need. And you can use it to convert the videos from camera/websites/iPhone/iPad to YouTube/facebook/VimeoInstagram, for nice uploading and sharing. 

(If you are a Windows use, you can get Pavtube Video Converter


Other Download: 
- Pavtube old official address: 
- Amazon Store Download: 
- Cnet Download: 

Simple Steps to Convert MKV to MP4 using Pavtube Video Converter for Mac on Mac 

Step 1. Import MKV files 

It is as simple as clicking on “File” from the menu bar then “Load Files”. You will have an easy time browsing through the computer to locate files to import. 


Step 2. Output MP4 format 

MP4 is the one and only option you will go for in this one. There are several other formats available but you just have to ignore them for MP4. Click “Format” bar, and select .mp4 from “Common video” or “HD video” or “3D” or other device. 


Step 3. Begin the MKV to MP4 conversion 

When you click the “Convert” button, the process of converting MKV to MP4 will begin in earnest and it will be very fast. 

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