Quick Tip: Convert Video & Audio Files with Adobe Media Encoder

by Jake Rocheleau
on June 16, 2015

The task of converting media has always been tricky. It’s possible to use online tools or free programs like MP4 to MP3 Converter. But most of these tools are lackluster, full of adware, and don’t have the prettiest interfaces.

adobe media converter cs6 splash

Adobe’s Creative Suite 6 released with a new program called Media Encoder. This allows you to encode any type of media into another format or file container.

I’ll explain how you can do this with any piece of media using Adobe Media Converter CS6 or CC. It’s actually a very simple piece of software and once you learn how it works, you’ll never want to use anything else.

Interface Familiarity

There isn’t a whole lot you need to learn about the interface that isn’t self-evident. The Queue window holds a list of media waiting to be encoded. From the preset browser you have loads of choices for video formats made for TV, tablets, smartphones, basically everything.

preset defaults media encoder

Another interesting aspect is that you can merge JPEG/PNG images into full videos. This could be useful if you have a series of images that you want to animate like a GIF. The other alternative would be splitting a video into JPEG/PNG screenshots.

Basically this software is great for turning any type of media into something else.

For this example I want to show how you can download a YouTube video and convert the mp4 video into an mp3 audio file.

Acquiring Media

The first thing you need is some media. While YouTube is a popular source of uploaded material, you could also take video from your own home movies or anything else.

I’ll use this example of an Auld Lang Syne rendition. You can download the video with any download service like SaveFrom. Just enter the YouTube URL and select any video format – in this case it’s going to be converted to audio so video size doesn’t matter.

download mp4 from youtube

Once it’s finished downloading just drag the file into Media Encoder.

media encoder converting screen

Converting Video to Audio

The file should appear in your queue as a video and may auto-select another video format for conversion. Right-click on the file and choose Export Settings…

adobe media encoder mp3 output settings

From this dialog you can choose an MP3 file, along with the bitrate and specifics of encoding(do you want the whole song? Just a few seconds?)

You can also change the filename and select where it should be exported. Once everything looks good hit OK.

Now find the little green play button located atop the queue window.

start queue adobe media converter

Click this button and it’ll run through all encodings in the queue. When it’s done you’ll hear a little confirmation jingle and the queue list should appear greyed out.

To access the newly exported .mp3 just click the name from the queue list. It’ll open Windows Explorer(Finder on Mac) to the precise location.

And there you have it! Simple, customizable, and without a doubt the best way for Adobe users to reencode their media.

About Jake Rocheleau

Jake is a freelance writer, designer, and illustrator. He currently writes articles on user experience design for web & mobile. You can see more work on his portfolio site and follow his tweets @jakerocheleau.

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