3 Best Ways to Convert H.264 Files to MP4 on Windows/Mac

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convert h264 to mp4

MP4 is a file container format that utilizes MPEG-4 codec for compression to store a combination of video, audio, image, and subtitle data, all in a single file. It is the most popular format in the video industry due to its great compatibility with almost any device or platform and online streaming.

H.264 is a new video compression standard or codec that is more efficient, though support is overly limited to newer devices/players. For this reason, a more compatible video codec like MP4’s MPEG-4 is ideal to support even older devices or players, and the realization of this requires an H.264 to MP4 converter.

Of course, finding a suitable tool and method to convert H.264 to MP4 can be quite painstaking but luckily, this article seeks to open you up to the best ways to Convert H.264 files to MP4 using the following video converter programs;

How to Convert H.264 Files to MP4 with Best H.264 Video Converter

TalkHelper Video Converter is one of the best H.264 to MP4 converter software with a great focus on delivering exemplary output at all times. Some of the media formats you can process include MKV, MOV, WMV, AVI, MP3, and more, besides supporting almost all video and audio codecs.

Instead of just picking MP4 as the output format, TalkHelper Video Converter also offers sub-formats that present different output resolutions to choose from. Coupling all that with the top-notch algorithms in use guarantees high-quality lossless H.264 to MP4 conversion. This encoder also helps you to realize high levels of efficiency through multicore processing and hardware acceleration out of the box.

Download TalkHelper Video Converter

Steps to Convert H.264 to MP4 on Windows 10 Using TalkHelper Video Converter:

Step 1: Import an H.264 video file. Click on the “Add Media” button and select the “Add Video File…” option.

import_h264_talkhelper

From the “Open a video” window like the one below, go to the source directory, select the H.264 video file, and hit the “Open” button.

choose_h264_file

Step 2: Set the output format to MP4. Click on the “Output Format” button to open a list of categories, choose the “Popular” category, select MP4 from the sidekick menu, and then pick your preferred output resolution from the list of sub formats.

select_mpeg_4_encoder

Step 3: Set output parameters and convert. Using the “More parameters” link, open the “Single file parameters” mini-window, adjust the “Target path:” and “Quality:” options, and click on the “OK” button to save the changes. After that, click on the “Start Convert” button to start the conversion process.

start_convert_talkhelper

Download TalkHelper Video Converter


How to Convert H.264 to MP4 With Freeware

# VLC Media Player

VideoLAN’s VLC Media Player is a free, open-source, and fully-fledged multimedia player that commands a great following from users across Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, Unix, iOS, Android, and more platforms. This H.264 to MP4 Converter supports a wide range of video codecs (MPEG-2, MPEG-4, H.264, MKV, WebM, WMV, etc) and audio codecs like MP3, among others to ensure you have a heaven of time playing and converting almost any media.

The built-in video converter not only converts H.264 file into native MP4 format but also allows you to tailor the output to a wide range of devices too. Even better, the support for fast hardware decoding helps to obtain the output MP4s even faster.

Limitations:

  • No batch conversion
  • Conversion options are not that straightforward
  • Struggles with some formats

Download vlc media player

Steps to convert H.264 Files to MP4 using VLC Media Player:

Step 1: Open the file conversion interface. From VLC’s “Media” menu, select the “Convert/Save…” option.

VLC_open_conversion

Step 2: Add an H.264 video file for conversion. With the “File” tab selected, click on the “Add…” button, import the source video file, and then hit the “Convert/Save” button.

add_h264_file_vlc

Step 3: Adjust the necessary output options and convert. Select an MP4 preset from the “Profile” section, hit the “Browse” button to configure where to save the output MP4 file (ensure to have .mp4 as the file extension), and finally hit the “Start” button.

set_output_mp4_vlc

Download vlc media player

# FFmpeg (via command line)

FFmpeg is a top-tier multimedia framework with the capability of functioning as both an H.264 player and converter. It boasts high levels of portability thanks to its support for multiple platforms like Linux, Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, the BSDs, Solaris, and more.

At its core, FFmpeg is designed for command-line use to help you convert H.264 into MP4 using just a single command. Apart from H.264/H.265/HEVC conversion, you are also opened up to some editing options that help to trim, join, and scale videos. With the power coming with this encoder and decoder, you get to switch between the MPEG-4 and H.264 video codecs in one command.

Limitations:

  • Not that accommodating for novice users – No GUI
  • One requires other SDKs to know the supported video/audio formats
  • No proper guides or documentation

Steps to convert H.264 Files to MP4 using FFmpeg:

Step 1: Obtain the FFmpeg executables. On your web browser, navigate to https://www.ffmpeg.org/download.html and download the packages or executables for your platform. Since I am on Windows I will therefore download the Windows-specific files.

obtain_ffmpeg

Step 2: Locate the FFmpeg executable. Although the milestone may vary, you must have downloaded a compressed file containing the FFmpeg files. All you need to do is extract the contents and then open the folder containing the executables.

locate_ffmpeg_exe

Step 3: Open a command-line window or command prompt in the folder containing the executables. On Windows 11, simply right-click inside the folder (other versions of Windows may require you to hold down the “Shift” key on the keyboard), and select the “Open in Windows Terminal” option (the option name also varies depending on the version of Windows). Once you do so, you should see a terminal window pop up.

open_command-line

Step 4: Add the H.264 file in the folder containing the FFmpeg executables. Simply copy and paste the source file in the indicated folder. In our case here, we will be using an MKV file that utilizes the H.264 codec.

add_h264_file_into_folder

Step 5: Convert the H.264 file into MP4. Using the earlier opened command-line window, type the command below. Remember to substitute the “inputfilename” with the source filename of your H.264 file and the “outputfilename” with the name you want for the target MP4 file.

./ffmpeg.exe -i inputfilename.mkv outputfilename.mp4

For instance, mine will be as below. I am keeping the same filename for the output too.

./ffmpeg.exe -i sample.mkv sample.mp4

Once you have the command ready, hit the “Enter” key on your keyboard.

convert_h264_into_mp4

Once the conversion process is done, you should be able to find the converted MP4 file in the same directory as the source file.

preview_output_mp4_file

Conclusion

Converting H.264 into MP4 is a need that will come knocking at your door, in one way or another, and when that happens, this article has presented not one, not two, but four best ways at your disposal. These guides to convert H.264 to MP4 are broken down to the smallest action possible to make sure that even first-timers can kick the ball out of the park hassle-free. With that said, grab your H.264 to MP4 converter of choice here and conveniently transform H.264 files into their MP4 format equivalent.

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