Video conversion tools: Online VS Offline

Video conversionThere is always an ever-increasing need to convert video files into formats that are suitable for portable devices like iPod, PSP and mobile phones. This is because people want to have their favorite YouTube videos with them wherever they go, and also because users produce more video content they would like to show to their friends or see whenever they want.

There’s a great need then for easy to use, effective and ideally free conversion and editing tools. Although there are web services that offer these features, in my experience it can be hard to edit or encode video files online, both because of the upload bandwidth limits and because while editing, if anything goes wrong, like a temporary server failure, a problem with the connection or a stability issue of your browser, you can lose all your work.

If you need to convert small videos and you want to try some online services, here’s a list of useful website to keep in mind:

  • YouConvertIt – Convert any media file format (Documents, Images, Audio, Video & Archives) for free and without installing anything to your PC.
  • Cellsea – Free online video editor and converter. It has some issues managing medium-sized files.
  • Hey!Watch – Hey!Watch is a professional and reliable encoding platform available via a simple and intuitive interface. No file size limit.
  • Youtubehack – Download YouTube video as FLV, MPG, XviD, MOV or MP3 (sound only) format.

Specifically for medium-sized videos, it’ll be some time before web applications overtake software you install on your computer, although it’s good to have options available and surely online services will improve in the near future. For the moment, you will get better results with some freeware applications:

  • On DVDVideoSoft you’ll find a collection of free software for your PC, for fast and efficient results, to download, convert, extract, edit videos.
  • SUPER – If you need a simple, yet very efficient tool to convert, encode or play any multimedia file, without reading manuals or spending long hours training, then this program is all you need. It is a multimedia encoder and a multimedia player, easy-to-use with one simple click.
  • Videora and Free iPod Video Converter – If you are interested just in converting files for your iPod.
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