Richard Rossi

A Hillbilly’s Guide to Working With Video Files

Est. Reading Time: 4 minutes


Come and listen to a story about a man named Jed A poor mountaineer, barely kept his family fed, Then one day he was shootin at some food, And up through the ground came a bubblin crude.

Like Jed, I’m a pretty simply guy and I’ve found that its the simple things that work best. Video is a great seo tool and YouYube a terrific way to leverage social media so when a client advises me that they have product video that I can use, I feel as if I’ve struck it rich. But, like the technological hillbilly that I am, figuring out how to make unfamiliar file types and unknown codecs work properly with my very basic Windows Live Media editing software can be another matter.

Until recently, video codecs were a foreign concept to me. But a brief explanation from an experienced film editor clarified things for me.

Codec is short for compression-decompression and when a videographer saves a video file, the information must be compressed using a codec specific to that particular software type.

Well the first thing you know ol Jed’s a millionaire, Kinfolk said “Jed move away from there” Said “Californy is the place you ought to be” So they loaded up the truck and moved to Beverly.

But when you discover that the high definition footage the client provided cannot be edited or even opened by your current computer’s codec, what do you do? The way I see it, you have two choices – either upgrade the the Beverly Hills of editing software to accommodate HD editing (likely at a price tag of over a grand) or find the codec used to compress the file and download it onto your system.

GSpot visualDownload GSpot, a freeware that will identify the codec used for both the audio and video portion of the file. Not only that, it will advise you as to which one, if any, is present on your current setup.

Now that you’ve identified the critter, finding where it hides in the wild becomes much easier. It won’t require much research for you to find out the software associated with the codec and it’s manufacturer. Go straight to said manufacturer to get the correct codec for the file you’re trying to work with. Most are very helpful as they want to make sure that their clients’ clients are happy. They’ll almost certainly provide you with a reputable source for a download or perhaps a link from their own website to do so.

NEVER download a codec from a site other than one suggested by the manufacturer. This hillbilly did and came down with a moonshine hangover that only the best anti-virus software removal programs could remedy.

Well now its time to say good by to Jed and all his kin. And they would like to thank you folks fer kindly droppin in. You’re all invited back a gain to this locality To have a heapin’ helpin’ of their hospitality

From there, just install the codec and you’ll be viewing and editing those product “how to” videos, saving you and your client time and money while enhancing your digital marketing efforts. There is one caveat. If Windows Live Media isn’t compatible with your client’s file type (mov., avi., etc.), a new codec won’t be of any help. In that event, have a nice trip to Beverly (Hills, that is).

Should you have any questions or comments on anything you see above, feel free to leave a comment (Both Hatfields and McCoys are welcomed to do so).

Y’all come back now, y’hear?