My son asked me to download video from youtube to play on his MP4. Honestly, I have no idea how to do that, as I knew that video clips showing on youtube is kind of special (flv), not like other files can be easily save on my computer. Of course, even you don't know a thing about this, you only need half hour to get a pretty good idea after some searching on the web. Yes, there are many free tools for this purpose, downloading video clips from web sites like youtube. I decided to give it a try. Based on the review, I chose "Youtube to iPod Converter" from dvdvideosoft.com
. It works perfectly. All you need is to supply a URL like http://youtube.com/watch?v=-ZmAgFyVo48, and tell it what format you want mpeg4 or mp3, and what quality you would like.
So far so good, the next step to play it on the MP4. I thought I only need to drag it to the MP4 that is connected to my computer like a USB drive. Yes, it took only seconds to finish the copying. But after changing to video play mode, this file didn't show up in the list. I took out the manual, which briefly mention that this MP4 only plays avi file. Fortunately, the MP4 player comes with a piece of software - AVI Video Converter.
OK, since the MP4 was bought in China, the software is a Chinese version, which can not show menu/label/message properly on an English Windows. As I knew I need a conversion tool, I turned back to the web for help. This time, I downloaded another tool called AVS Video Converter from avs4you.com
. This tool is advertised to convert, split, join, remove commercials, edit, rotate, add logo, cut scenes, apply effects, extract audio tracks and images, capture, transfer, copy, rip, and burn DVD and video files with AVS Video Tools. All key formats are supported: AVI (DivX, XviD), DV AVI, MP4 (Sony PSP, Apple iPod, Archos DVR, Creative Zen), WMV, 3GP, 3G2, QuickTime (MOV, QT), SWF, DVD, VOB, VRO, MPEG 1,2, MPG, DAT, VCD, SVCD, ASF, MJPEG, H.263, H.264, Real Video (RM, RMVB), and DVR-MS. Direct transfer to iPod, PSP, mobiles and other portable players. Create and upload your video to wide range of mobile devices--portable players, including Sony PSP, Apple iPod, Archos DVR, Creative Zen Vision, mobile phones capable of video playback, and portable DVD players.
No surprise, the AVIConverter works. Even for mpeg4 to avi, there are many different formats for avi. But no matter which format I chose, the output avi file was not playable on the MP4, though it shew on the video list. It kept complaining "wrong format". Looking for answers on the web, the possible reason is that the resolution of avi file does not match with the LCD screen. I guess the only way to resolve this is to find another tool and get the Chinese version tool to show the menu in a human readable way, which is impossible in a near future ...