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This *does not change the video encoding*, so it's fast (almost purely I/O-bound) and results in a file of nearly the same size.
However, OSX (and possibly other programs) will more easily play/seek the file when wrapped as MOV. For example, you can QuickLook the resulting file.
This basically does the same as the commercial ClipWrap program, except using the free program ffmpeg.
i have a large video file, 500+ MB, so i cant upload it to flickr, so to reduce the size i split it into 2 files. the command shows the splitting for the first file, from 0-4 minutes. ss is start time and t is duration (how long you want the output file to be).
credit goes to philc: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=480343
NOTE: when i made the second half of the video, i got a *lot* of lines like this:
frame= 0 fps= 0 q=0.0 size= 0kB time=10000000000.00 bitrate= 0.0kbit
just be patient, it is working =)
Convert those .mov files that your digital camera makes to .avi
Adjust the bitrate (-b) to get the appropriate file size. A larger bitrate produces a larger (higher quality) .avi file and smaller bitrate produces a smaller (lower quality) .avi file.
Requires ffmpeg (see man page for details)
(tested with canon camera MOV files)
ffmpeg -i input.mov -sameq -vcodec msmpeg4v2 -acodec pcm_u8 output.avi
ffmpeg -i input.mov -b 1024k -vcodec msmpeg4v2 -acodec pcm_u8 output.avi