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convert video filesNot all video conversion software is created equal. After many failed attempts to convert this one video, I nearly gave up until I recently stumbled across Format Factory.

The whole thing started when I was invited to be interviewed on a TV show. After the interview had aired and I received the DVD copy of the show, I was very antsy to use the content from that DVD as advertising for my online writing and research. Once I started trying to extract the clips and convert the video, however, I found that most of the video conversion tools I thought would work ended up failing either with ripping the DVD 5 Simple Steps To Rip An Entire DVD To Your Hard Drive 5 Simple Steps To Rip An Entire DVD To Your Hard Drive Read More or the video conversion 5 Easy-to-use Freeware Video Converters 5 Easy-to-use Freeware Video Converters Read More . I was stunned.

I read Simon’s article on digital video formats Digital Video Formats and Video Conversion Explained Digital Video Formats and Video Conversion Explained Read More and conversions, and just couldn’t quite figure out what was going wrong. After a while, I actually had to give up. Friends here at MakeUseOf suggested a bunch of applications that were sure to convert the video over How To Easily Convert Video Files to DVD, MP4, VCD, MPEG, AVI ... with VideoSpiritLite How To Easily Convert Video Files to DVD, MP4, VCD, MPEG, AVI ... with VideoSpiritLite Read More fine. Nothing worked. Then, last week as I was surfing the usual free software directories and sites, I saw one application called Format Factory that promised to convert anything at all to any other format. I thought it sounded much too good to be true.

Now, let me be the first to admit that just because Format Factory did the job for me, that doesn’t mean it’ll be perfect for anyone. However, since my situation was so difficult for other apps, and Format Factory was the only one to pull it off – that bodes well for it’s claim that it can convert nearly anything.

Installing Format Factory

After you download Format Factory and run the install, you’ll have to go through the first two screens carefully so as not to install the junkware that’s part of the install wizard. I say carefully, because if you deselect the first checkbox to not install the Ask Toolbar, it’ll gray out the second checkbox to set as your home page.

convert video files

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Instead, deselect the second checkbox first, and then deselect the first one. That will ensure nothing at all gets installed or changed. There’s also a second window for installing Just deselect the box and continue.

convert audio files

It’s unfortunate that some free software providers need to use these techniques to earn income, but it’s one of those nuisance things that I’ve personal become accustomed to and accept as part of the process. It’s all a part of “free”, and for me the promise of a video converter that could do what it promised was pretty compelling. Also, the nearly 300 votes with an above average rating on CNET was assurance enough that the software is legit.

CD & DVD Conversion

The moment the software launched, I went right to the section for CDs and DVDs, and browsed to the drive where my DVD was waiting. The software immediately recognized the DVD and the single track named “Title 1”.

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I left the output settings to the recommended video size, FPS and bitrate, and set the output format to MP4 because my end goal is to share this video with readers and fans online – both on YouTube and on my own blog. Crossing my fingers and crossing my toes, I clicked on the “Start” button at the top of the main screen, and watched intently to see what happened. To my surprise, the “Convert State” status bar started crawling to the right, revealing an increased percentage of the track that was getting converted over to the MP4 file.

convert audio files

File Conversions

Format Factory isn’t just about backing up your DVDs or CDs, it’s really about taking any file from any format and getting it into the format that you need. This includes just about every image format that you might be working with.

convert files

It also includes a list of audio files like MP3, WMA, FLA, WAV, and a bunch of others.

convert files

And if you already have a video format to start with, but it’s not what you wanted to work with? Have no fear, Format Factory handles just about any format you might have – from WMV and MOV to MPEG and VOB.  The variety of formats available to work with on Format Factory is pretty impressive considering how much difficulty I had to get so many other video conversion apps to actually work successfully. Those were all promises, while I can say that I confirmed Format Factory backs it up.


Extra Features

A few cool features hidden in the Options menu include things like setting notification alerts when the extra-long conversion process is finished, or you can even have the software automatically shut down your computer if you want to go to bed and don’t want the computer to stay on all night once the conversion is done.

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There are also a number of tweaks you can make to various output formats, if you know what you’re doing. I don’t – so I typically leave these areas to the experts.

convert video files


Thankfully, the DVD conversion to MP4 that I needed to accomplish was finished without any tweaks necessary, and after trying to accomplish this over many months and after a variety of video conversion apps failing me, saying that I was elated after using this software would be an understatement. Now I can share my interview with all of my friends and family, and it’s thanks to Format Factory. If you have a particularly difficult file conversion you’ve been trying to accomplish, I suggest you give Format Factory a try. Not only does it work, but it’s free. Nice combination. Do you have any difficult conversions you’ve been working on? What’s your take on Format Factory? Share your input and feedback in the comments section below.

Image Credit: Electronic Media Devices Via Shutterstock

  1. daniyal141
    August 27, 2016 at 3:05 pm

    What about NUT files?

  2. Well S
    September 2, 2013 at 10:38 am

    The method is great, but I think you can convert the any video to other formats with a better software at, here is detailed guide of converting avi to mp4 format with the great software: It can convert any video formats to AVI, MP4, MOV, MKV, WMV, DivX, XviD, MPEG-1/2, 3GP, 3G2, VOB… video formats. have a try.

  3. Steven G
    July 1, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    I will have to check this out and see if its worth. I am sure it is, but will be well worth the time to check it ou.

  4. Manide
    June 30, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    Good presentation, but not a single word about how FF handles subtitles. It does very well. This is one of the main reasons I use it.

  5. A&L
    June 29, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    Used to use format factory but now i use

  6. Chiranthaka Jayakody
    June 29, 2013 at 7:56 am

    This is a free tool so no worry for the price.

  7. Jaqui Miles
    June 29, 2013 at 4:28 am

    Cool. May be just what I have been looking for!

  8. J Enrique F
    June 29, 2013 at 3:02 am

    FF is awesome! thank you...
    Ask toolbar was installed anyway, but it was easy to uninstall too...

  9. Ramchandra Naik
    June 28, 2013 at 7:12 am

    I use the same ,i had the same problem i installed many S/W & uninstalled them mostly A/V converters they let me down then i stumbled upon Format factory its an awesome S/W, "recommended ".

  10. Indronil Mondal
    June 28, 2013 at 5:35 am

    just wondering sir which program you were using before you found format factory ..

  11. Siber
    June 28, 2013 at 2:07 am

    Thanks for posting up.

    I have been using AppGeeker for a long time and it can convert almost anything to anything (in batch as well). Audio or video.

    Glad to know that new and will test to see results.

  12. ReadandShare
    June 27, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    A bit on a tangent... we all know China makes (or at least assembles) most of the hardware we use -- but now, it seems their software is starting to make inroads as well. Looking at the software I use, I believe these are from China:

    1. system backup - EaseUS (Win)
    2. office replacement - Kingsoft (Win and Android)
    3. A/V converter -- and now, Format Factory

  13. Don Gateley
    June 27, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    I sure wish it handled .mkv files. The MakeMKV program is the only way I've found to extract Blu-Ray disks to a file and .mkv is anything but universal.

    • Ryan Dube
      June 27, 2013 at 11:39 pm

      I saw an icon under video for MKV - does that not work?

      • Don Gateley
        June 28, 2013 at 3:14 am

        Indeed it does. The program supports .mkv even if the description at their site doesn't. :-)

  14. Prosthetic Lips
    June 27, 2013 at 8:40 pm

    Sorry, if you have to take a whole paragraph to tell people how to get around some crap software that gets installed with the software you REALLY want ... that is a GIANT red flag. Sounds like developers that hate their users.

    As an alternative, I'd suggest ffmpeg (has been around forever), or if you are command-line-phobic, install a GUI for it -- there are several. It seems to understand most any format, both input and output. I've never had an issue with it.

    • Ryan Dube
      June 27, 2013 at 11:31 pm

      Believe it or not I actually feel as strongly as you do about the software they embed into the install wizard. However, as we've discussed on other freeware reviews, the makers of these apps tend to look at different alternatives to make money - ads, crapware in the install, trial offers, etc... This is just one type of hassle you have to go through to get the free software. But - that's actually why I took an entire paragraph to carefully explain how to get around it, so that people can enjoy the software without having to deal with those things getting installed.

      Again - it's the only software that would get the video off the DVD for me - an amazing thing after all I went through before that.

  15. Doc
    June 27, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    I used SUPER at first, but after getting fed up with the overcrowded settings dialog, I started using Handbrake. I'll have to check this out as well.

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