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The Matroska (MKV) file format is an open standard for that has quickly become the preferred file extension for high definition video on the Internet. The MKV container can include video, audio, and features such as alternate audio tracks, multilingual subtitles and more.

The MKV file format is more suitable for the finished clip and that’s why it’s not supported by most popular video editing software like Premiere Pro or Davinci Resolve.

Why to use it?

The first question that might be asked here is why do we need to import the finished clip in the MKV format into Premiere Pro or Davinci Resolve? In my case, it is mostly for some analysis process. Let’s say I would like to analyze the specific scene in a movie, check the scopes, extract a frame and create a color palette. Or maybe even cut a short piece of a movie to be included somewhere for educational purposes.

How to convert it?

MKVTOMP4

If you are on Mac we are going to use a command line tool called mkvtomp4. To install the tool I used Homebrew – package manager for OS X – installation is pretty straightforward and it’s described on the homepage.

Once we have Homebrew onboard, open the terminal and install mkvtomp4:

brew install mkvtomp4

It has to download some more dependencies and after a few minutes it should be ready. Now, to convert the MKV file into MP4 file we just need to use the following command:

mkvtomp4 file-name.mkv

VLC

Another way to convert MKV file into something that will work with Premiere is to use VLC player. This method will work on both Windows and Mac. Simply open VLC and select File/Convert Stream. The following dialog box will pop up:

Drop the MKV file in the rectangle on top, select the desired output format and click Save as File.

VLC player can be downloaded from www.videolan.org.

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