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Encoding With HDConvertToX

HDConvertToX is a program for automating MPEG-4 (DivX, XviD, and x264) and Windows Media (VC-1) creation. It also has a little Blu-ray and AVCHD authoring capability. Despite the name, it works on both high definition and standard definition video, and in fact has a very nice interface to select titles from DVD IFO files.


Unlike some free encoder packages, HDConvertToX (HDC) doesn't include any type of auto-download functionality to automatically install all the third party components required. We'll start by installing and configuring those tools before installing HDC. Follow the instructions below for installing and configuring ffdshow, Haali Media Splitter, and AviSynth. XviD can be installed with all the default options.

Required Third Party Software

XviD Codec

The XviD codec is an open source MPEG-4 ASP encoder and DirectShow decoder. It's comparable to DivX or Nero Digital. Installation is simple, and you can safely keep default settings.

Introduction to Haali Media Splitter will walk you through installation. Use your browser's Back button to return here.


AviSynth is a powerful open source video editor, commonly used to provide input for encoders such as x264 for AVC. Our AviSynth guide will walk you through installation. No additional configuration or filters are needed. Use your browser's Back button to return here.


ffdshow is a DirectShow decoding filter for decompressing several video formats, including AVC/H.264, DivX, XviD, WMV, MPEG-1 and MPEG-2. You'll need ffdshow's MPEG-2 support enabled and VC-1 set to decode with wmv9. You can find detailed instructions for installation and configuring the required decoding options in our guide ffdshow Installation and Configuration. Make sure to at least follow the guide through the Video Decoder Configuration section. Use your browser's Back button to return here.

Installing HDConvertToX

Now you're ready to install HDC. Instead of an installer, HDC comes as a collection of files and folders which you can copy wherever you want. I prefer to create a folder called C:\Program Files\HDConvertToX and keep them there, but you can run HDC from pretty much any location on your hard drive.

Required Software


Installing HDConvertToX is as simple as unpacking an archive and copying the files wherever you want to run them from on your computer. I prefer to create a folder in C:\Program Files called HDConvertToX but any location will do. You will need a program for decompressing RAR files.

HDConvertToX Update

HDConvertToX updates are simply new executable files which you copy to the folder HDC is in. You should rename the old version of the file rather than copying over it so that you can revert to an earlier version in case of problems. Make sure to get the newest update along with your full installation.

Optional Software


7-Zip can be used to extract the files and folder from the HDC RAR file. The updates aren't archived so 7-Zip isn't needed for them.

Once you have everything installed you are ready to start encoding. If you are going to be encoding from a disc based source like DVD or Blu-ray you should copy the disc to your hard drive, either as individual files or a disc image to use with a virtual drive.

Continued On Page 2

The encoding process starts with selecting your source file(s) and analyzing it to determine what settings you should use.

Next: Load Source and Analyze

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Written by: Rich Fiscus