I’ve had my 27″ iMac desktop for a few months now, and I really love the fact that the Mac OS X is Unix under the hood. I’m an old Unix user from the 1990’s and it’s great that I can pop open a terminal shell window on my Mac and type in standard Unix/Linux commands to do my dirty work. For example, I had some video files in AVI format that I wanted converted to MP4 format for my iPod Touch, so I downloaded and compiled GPL source code for Mencoder and AtomicParsley on my Mac. I then typed in this command line line entry in a terminal shell window to do the conversion process:
mencoder stargate.avi -ovc copy -oac copy stargate.mp4
And off went the conversion process. I then used AtomicParsley to add in metadata information so that it would appear in iTunes properly:
atomicparsley stargate.mp4 –stik “Movie” –title “Stargate” –artwork sg.jpg –overWrite
I then copied the stargate.mp4 file over to the “Add to Itunes Automatically” folder to have the movie file placed in the proper directory for iTunes syncing with my iPod Touch. Sweet!
In this case, an alternative to using mencoder in a terminal shell window is to use the freeware product called Handbrake which has a GUI and works really well for converting videos. I tested it with a few AVI files and they converted over flawlessly to MP4 format for my iPod Touch.