How to Convert GoPro HEVC Videos to H.264 Using HandBrake

If you are looking to convert HEVC files from a GoPro Hero6 Black, then the reason might be – you have stuck in an event wherein you have recorded a video in HEVC settings and don’t have a compatible device to play your recordings. Well, this post helps in successfully converting HEVC (H.265) footage from your HERO6 Black so that it can be played on devices that are not HEVC-compatible. This can be done by using HandBrake. Download and install it so you can begin!

How to do it?

Step 1: Open HandBrake. Under "Source Selection" on the left sidebar, select "File" and choose one of your HEVC files.

Important – Note that the files with the following settings utilize the HEVC codec:

Step 2: Confirm that the file has been imported successfully by looking for the filename next to "Source". This is shown between the "Open Source" button and "Title" field.

Step 3: Set the export location under the "Destination" field. It may help to create a separate folder so that you know which videos are HEVC and which videos aren't.

Step 4: Under "Output Settings", select your file format under the "Container" field. You can hover over "Web Optimized" and "iPod 5G Support" to see how they would affect your conversion. However, there are two ways to go about converting your footage:

#1: Check out the Presets section on the right side panel and select from the list.

#2: Manually create your own output by going through each tab below the "Output Settings" section. Make sure you select the "Normal" preset under the "Legacy" section (screenshot above).

Under Video tab:

  • Video Encoder:264 (x264)
  • Framerate: Always choose "Same as source" with a Constant Framerate
  • Quality: Constant Quality between 20-24(1080) and 22-28 RF(2.7k/4k). Note that Lower RF numbers result in higher quality exports
  • Encoder Options: Either Faster, Fast or Medium depending on your computer's hardware. Higher end computers can try the Medium preset, but older hardware should lean towards the faster option

Under Picture tab:

  • Resolution: Use the source resolution unless you'd like to tune it down
  • Cropping: Automatic
  • Storage Size: Set to match the source size (unless you want to reduce the size)

Once you're ready, click "Start Encode" and wait for it to finish. You can track the progress of the export at the bottom of Handbrake window.

However, if you’re aiming for the highest quality, converting HEVC (H.265) to H.264 isn’t ideal especially if you’re planning to edit the files in something like Final Cut Pro X or Premiere Pro. It’s recompressing one compressed file into another compressed file, meaning the quality is going to take a further hit with that second-generation compression.

Recommended: To repair H.264 MOV video file, make use of Remo Repair MOV Software, which will help in getting your job done in few simple steps.

For the highest quality, it is better to covert the video file to something like Apple’s ProRes 422 codec or other high-quality codecs.

Quick note: GoPro SD card format error and GoPro No SD card error is a common error that most of the users face while using a GoPro camera. Did you know that GoPro SD card error can be easily fixed? Click here to know how to fix GoPro SD card error.

Playing HEVC files on non-HEVC compatible computers

If your computer isn’t running Windows 10 / macOS High Sierra or newer, you will not be able to play HEVC files. It is recommended to go with VLC as an excellent free, cross-platform app that can work with H.265 (HEVC) files.

In general, computers manufactured before 2016 may not handle HEVC files well.

Pro Tip: During the conversion process, if anything goes wrong there are chances that your GoPro video might get corrupt or damage. So it is a wise idea to take a backup of your video file before putting for conversion.

How to Convert GoPro HEVC Videos to H.264 Using HandBrake was last modified: February 12th, 2020 by John Harris

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