How to convert audio and video files with VLC

Talking about converting audio and video files in the middle of 2022 may sound old, like things from another era, but no matter how unusual this activity is today, it is no longer interesting to know at least how to do it in an elementary way, just in case the need arises.

The point is that although the current changes in terms of content consumption seem to have left dealing with multimedia files behind, or have left it for not very common occasions or user profiles, there are currently more tools than ever to do it without getting too complicated.

So for convert audio video files, convert between formats, it is understoodthere are applications of all kinds: specific applications with a multitude of options, more generic applications but with said capacity, multiplatform applications, web services… There is everything, but since this is about not complicating life…

Indeed, why get dizzy when, except for special needs, converting audio and video files with VLC is the easiest that you can put in your face. And it is that this veteran and popular multimedia player is used for much more than just playing content. For sample, a button.

VLC is one of the prides of free software for having become the reference in its category, but even before that it is a first-class tool: for PC it has always been one of the most popular players because it offered all the necessary compatibility by default so as not to leave you in the lurch; and also for Android is highly recommended.

On this occasion, however, we are left with the desktop version (Linux, mac, Windows) of VLC, which is what will make it easier for us to convert audio and video files quickly and without complications. Because… who doesn’t have VLC installed on their PC, just in case? Well that.

For the example with which to illustrate this tutorial and since converting audio and video files is as generic as there are multimedia formats on the market, we will settle for converting music in a FLAC format without quality loss to MP3, with loss of quality, but more compatible with all kinds of players and more manageable because it weighs less. By steps:

It has no loss: we open VLC and the menu «Medium > Convert…«.

How to convert audio and video files with VLC

In the «File» tab we add with the «+Add» the files that we want to convert (audio or video, but not both at the same time). Then, “Convert / Save» (the additional options «Show more options» are used to synchronize audio or video and will not be necessary most of the time).

How to convert audio and video files with VLC

In the drop-down menu of the «Profile» the destination file type is chosen and in the wrench button access to more options.

How to convert audio and video files with VLC

For example, in that menu (the wrench button) you can choose the type of container, although in general it will already be set correctly according to the profile chosen in the previous step.

How to convert audio and video files with VLC

And continuing with our example, in the “Audio codec” tab we can choose a specific codec, as well as the bit rate, the sample rate, and even apply filters.

How to convert audio and video files with VLC

What if instead of audio you are converting video? All the previous steps are the same, but the video codec options change.

How to convert audio and video files with VLC

Finally, just apply the changes for the conversion to begin.

How to convert audio and video files with VLC

In short, converting audio and video files with VLC is very easy. In addition, in many cases it will be enough to choose the few options mentioned, because almost everything is well preconfigured so that the most common conversions consist of little more than hitting the next button. In any case, you can try touching parameters until you get the desired result. Keep in mind only one thing: reducing the quality can be done, increasing it is not possible, and that is that where it does not exist, it cannot be obtained.

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