Desktop Video/iMovie question


I have exported to my desktop a 5-minute video from iMovie. The desktop file is about 380MB, way too large.  How do I export such a file from iMovie at a much smaller size? Thanks.

Unfortunately, I don't use iMovie so I'm not very familiar with it's capabilities. I can, however speak in general terms and hopefully some of it will apply.

Essentially, there are three main ways to reduce file size: 1/reduce the quality, 2/reduce the image size, and 3/try a different codec or file type.

Number one is probably the least desired because you'll be actively making your movie look worse. You may have settings that will allow you to drop the image, and maybe the audio, quality easily. You'll have to look around in there and see what's available. You can also change it from HD to SD to reduce quality/size.

Number two is pretty easy. Just change the output from, say 1080, to 720 or even 480 (SD). This will change the file size quite a bit.

Number three is probably the best one to try, but may not work as well. MPEG4(mp4) is usually a pretty good format for quality/size. You can also try MPG and others. MOV files and AVI files are usually pretty large so you may want to avoid those. You can also try H.264 variations.

You may have to do a combination of all three suggestions to get the size down as much as you want.

I hope this is helpful. Good luck.  

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R. Ferguson


Some technical knowledge in connectivity, systems, cameras, image/video software. I am better at project development, scripting, organization, conceptualization. I know Premiere, Final Cut Pro, Photoshop, AfterEffects, some Avid, and some others but am no real expert on them. I also have knowledge in multimedia.


Wel over 20yrs of various TV/video production experience. B.S. degree in TV Production from James Madison Univ. Taught TV production at a community college for 5 yrs.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Communications (Radio, TV, Film); James Madison Univ., Harrisonburg, VA

Awards and Honors
Telly Awards, Communicator Awards, Ava Award, Virginia Community College Associatiopn awards, National Council for MArketing and Public Relations Awards, CAB Award, and others.

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