[Review] Aimersoft Video Converter

{rw_text}Software reviewed in this article:

Aimersoft Video Converter

Version reviewed:

v4.0.2 (“Std” Edition)

Software description as per the developer:

Aimersoft Video Converter Std is the best video converter which helps to convert videos between media formats. As a featured video file converter, it is expert at converting HD videos like AVCHD, and SD videos like AVI, MP4, WMV, MOV, MPEG, Xvid with perfect output quality and high conversion speed. With this Video Converter, you can freely convert videos for iPad, iPhone 4(4G), iPhone 3GS, iPod Touch, iPod Nano,Google nexus one, etc.

Supported OS:

Windows 2000 and higher

Price:

$35.95 (USD)

Ashraf’s note:

Aimersoft Studio is owned by Wondershare Software. Aimersoft Video Converter is similar/the same as other Wondershare/Wondershare-owned video converters like Wondershare Video Converter Platinum and iSkysoft Video Converter. (Aimersoft Video Converter just looks a bit different but it is pretty much the same as the others.) Just an FYI for those who already have Wondershare Video Converter Platinum, iSkysoft Video Converter, or any other fully-featured Wondershare-owned video converter.

Also, please note this review was originally written in July 2010 on Aimersoft Video Converter v4.0.0. It has now been updated to reflect the new version, v4.0.2. Here are the changes made since v4.0.0, as per the developer:

Version 4.0.1, released on Aug 18, 2010

  • Faster performance with optimization for AMD and Intel Multi-core processors
  • 6X faster conversion speed boost with NVIDIA® CUDA™ support for all video files with H.264 codec

Version 4.0.2, released on Sep 2, 2010

  • Solved the incompatibility bug with NVIDIA graphics driver in video conversion;
  • Added new hardware formats: Blackberry Torch 9800, Samsung Vibrant, Samsung Captivate, LG Prime, DROID2, HTC Aria.

{/rw_text} –>

{rw_good}

  • Straightforward and easy to use.
  • Does HD and SD video conversions.
  • Does audio conversions.
  • Can rip audio from videos.
  • Supports many input and output formats.
  • Has many predefined output “profiles” for electronic gadgets, such as the mobile phones, the PSP, and the XBox 360.
  • Allows users to do some basic video editing, such as crop, trim, add watermark, add effect, and add subtitles.
  • Can automatically split output files based on size or time.
  • Supports batch processing.
  • Supports drag + drop.
  • Users can merge videos together.
  • Allows users to automatically shutdown the computer after conversion.
  • Adds an entry into the right-click context menu for easy conversions.
  • Supports DirectShow files.
  • Supports NVIDIA CUDA technology.
  • Supports multi-core CPUs.

{/rw_good} –>

{rw_bad}

  • Does not allow users the option to opt-out/remove the right-click context menu entry.
  • Does not support .SWF as input.

{/rw_bad} –>

{rw_score}
{for=”Ease of Use” value=”9″}Very easy to use with one problem: Does not allow users the option to opt-out/remove the right-click context menu entry that is added when the program is installed.
{/for}
{for=”Performance” value=”10″}Performs extremely well: converts fairly quickly, output quality is excellent, and use of computer resources is acceptable.
{/for}
{for=”Usefulness” value=”9″}I can see many people finding this program useful.
{/for}
{for=”Price” value=”5″}In today’s world video/audio converters are a dime a dozen (i.e. there are many out there). So asking $35.95 for a video converter – even if it is fully featured – is a bit high in my opinion. I believe $20-25 is a better price for this software. Yes it is true $35 is the “industry standard” of how much to charge for video converters; but it isn’t an excuse that rival programs are priced at $35 because Wondershare – the company that owns Aimersoft – controls a huge share of the shareware video converter market; they can set the prices lower if they want.
{/for}
{for=”Final Score” value=”9″}
{/for}
{/rw_score} –>

{rw_verdict}[tupr]
{/rw_verdict} –>

Aimersoft Video Converter is a fully featured audio and video converter. It can convert audio and video files, supports many input and output formats, can rip audio from video, can do basic edits on files before converting, and can merge input files together. Plus it provides fairly good aesthetics (in regards to the interface) without sacrificing on performance.

This is what Aimersoft Video Converter’s main program window looks like:

Using AVC (Aimersoft Video Converter) is very easy:

  • Step 1 – Import the files (video or audio) that you want to convert. Batch processing and drop + drop is supported. These are all the supported input formats:

(Click on the image above to view the list in full size.)

  • (Optional) Step 2 – Make edits to the input files. AVC allows users to crop, trim, add a watermark (image or text watermark), add subtitles (.SRT, .ASS, and .SSA), adjust the volume level, edit the brightness, contrast, saturation, add effect (gray, embosss, negative, or old fim), deinterlace (repeat odd field, repeat even field, odd interpolate, even interpolate), and/or flip (vertically/horizontally):

The pencil button gives users access to the first editing window while the scissors button gives users access to the trim window (second window). Take note you must have a file clicked on from the input files list before hitting either of those buttons or else you will get an error message telling you to please select a file.

I personally find the side-by-side windows method (the left window is of the video as it is and the right window is of the video as it will look with the edits you make) of editing very enjoyable.  It is very easy to compare and see how the video looks before you make your edits and how it will look after.

  • Step 3 – Select the output format/profile:

These are all the supported output formats/profiles:

(Click on the image to view the list in full size.)

One thing to keep in mind is that all of the output selections you see above are not output formats per se. Many of them are “profiles” for gadgets such as a Blackberry or PSP. In other words if you have an PSP and you select the “PSP” output profile, the output format of your video will still be .MP4; the difference between a “Common Video” .MP4 selection and a PSP .MP4 selection is the settings of the output video will be optimized for your PSP. You can always optimize the settings manually from “Common Video” .MP4 to represent that of your PSP but having predefined profiles is convenient.

When picking an output format/profile remember that you don’t have to do just audio to audio and video to video conversions; you can also rip audio from video. Also, if you are converting more than one file at once, AVC allows you to covert each file to a different output format/profile (click on each individual file and change the output format/profile for it individually).

  • (Optional) Step 4 – Customize output file settings. When it comes to customizing the output file settings, there are two things ways the user can do it:
    • Change the “quality” of the output file:

  • Manually customize the output file settings (“Advanced” button):

Both changing the quality of the output file and manually customizing the output file settings accomplish the same thing. The difference is changing the quality via the drop down menu is the quick way of doing things, while customizing the output file settings via the “Advanced” menu allows for more user control.

Take note that via the “Advanced” button you have the option of automatically splitting output files by size or time.

  • Step 5 – Start conversion:

When the conversions have finished, you are not prompted with a pop up window, but you are still told the conversions have finished:

Performance of Aimersoft Video Converter is nothing short of excellent; it works quickly, converts with terrific quality, and uses industry-average amount of computer resources. Take note that if you have multiple-cores, when converting HD videos AVC will make full use of all cores so you may experience 100% CPU usage. (You can force AVC to only use a single core if you want via the settings.)

A few more things I would like to point out about AVC:

  • By default your output file is set to be the same name as your input file (with just the change of extension). If you want to change the name of your output file, click on the file name and change the name to whatever you want:

  • You can merge multiple input files together. Just add all the files you want to merge together and check “Merge into one file” before hitting “Start” to start your converting:

Keep in mind that each file will be merged together one right after another in the order that is listed in AVC. So if you want a particular order of the merged file, be sure to move the input files up/down respectively.

  • Going to “File” -> “File Information” allows users to gain a fair amount of technical details about the selected input file:

  • AVC allows users to automatically shutdown the computer after conversions have finished. To enable this feature, go to “Tools” -> “Shutdown PC After Conversion”.
  • AVC supports NVIDIA CUDA technology. You must have a GPU that supports NVIDIA CUDA, though, to use it.
  • By default AVC does not allow for the automatic renaming of output files if a file of the same name already exists; you can either replace the existing file or manually change the new output file’s name. However, users can change this and make AVC automatically rename files if existing files already exist. To change this, go to “Preferences” (“Tools” -> “Preferences”)…

…and select “Keep all versions of the converted file” under “Duplicate files filter”. This option will force AVC to automatically rename output files shall a conflict ever occur.

Also note the other settings available from “Preferences” such as multi-core CPU usage (if applicable), and enabling/disabling NVIDIA CUDA (if applicable).

  • AVC adds an entry into the right-click context menu for easy conversion of files:

  • AVC supports DirectShow files (“File” -> “Add DirectShow Files”). I am not 100% sure what DirectShow files are; a little research revealed that they deal with video developers of some sort. However the people that need DirectShow will know what it is so I thought I should mention it.

That said, there are four areas I have pinpointed where Aimersoft Video Converter can be improved:

  • AVC does not allow users to opt-out/remove the entry that is added to the right-click context menu. The developer really should add in the ability to remove this entry because not everyone will want it in their context menu. (See dotTech’s article on ShellExView on how to remove the entry manually.)
  • AVC does not take in SWF as input. Now let me say that many video conversion programs cannot take SWF as inputs, because SWF conversion is drastically different than say AVI -> WMV, so AVC is not alone in this category; but it still is a con.
  • There is no way to change the “processing priority” of AVC. File conversation by nature can, at times, be very demanding on computer resources – especially the CPU. Although not a deal breaker by any means, it would have been nice to be able to set AVC to “low processing priority” from within the program itself so using the computer while AVC runs is a bit easier. Take note that users can change the “processing priority” of AVC manually via Windows Task Manager (it needs to be changed every time manually, unless you decide to install Prio).
  • When going to select an output format/profile, you are sometimes bombarded with selections of output formats that are the same with subtle differences. For example look at the selections of .MPGs:

Now don’t get me wrong: each MPEG-1/2 selection is slightly different than the others, so the developer can be justified as listing them as different entries. However I think that the menu would be least cluttered and overwhelming if the developer condenses these types of entries, the ones that are similar with only slight differences, into one entry and allowed the user to manually pick between the differences via the “Advanced” menu. This, however, isn’t a major issue and is subjective from user to user.

This review was conducted on a laptop running Windows 7 Professional 32-bit. The specs of the laptop are as follows: 3GB of RAM, a Radeon HD 2600 512MB graphics card, and an Intel T8300 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo processor.

{rw_freea}

iWisoft Video Converter

iWisoft Video Converter is very similar to Aimersoft Video Converter; it provides many of the same features. The major difference between iWisoft Video Converter and AVC is iWisoft has not been updated in a long time whereas AVC is fairly regularly updated. Because of that reason, Aimersoft Video Converter has some improvements in areas such as output profiles (Aimersoft Video Converter has profiles for newer devices such as the Nexus One, Samsung Vibrant, and Samsung Fascinate), support for automatic renaming of duplicate files, ability to create variable bitrate videos, support for adding subtitles, and – most recently – NVIDIA CUDA support.

Performance of both converters is excellent.

FormatFactory

Format Factory is a multifunctional media converter. It supports many input and output formats, allows for the conversion of video files, audio files, image files, and has a few other handy features also. FF offers most all of the same video and audio converting features (including most of the editing features) as Aimersoft Video Converter; the main difference, in my opinion, is Aimersoft Video Converter is a bit easier to use in my opinion, but that is fairly subjective. There are two other differences worth noting, though: AVC mersoft Video Converter has the ability to create variable bitrate videos and NVIDIA CUDA support while FF has neither.

Performance of both converters is excellent.

Super

With Super, you can literally convert any audio/video file to any audio/video file. The interface is a bit overwhelming at first, but if you learn to navigate it, Super will be your best friend. The only problem is the last time I tried to use Super I kept getting continual errors.

YouConvertIt.com

You can convert your files via this online website. They will convert your files then email you a link to them. Never really used it myself so can’t say much about it.

Any Video Converter

Any Video Converter is an all-in-one video converting freeware with easy-to-use graphical interface, fast converting speed, and excellent video quality. It can convert almost all video formats including DivX, XviD, MOV, RM, RMVB, MPEG, VOB, DVD, WMV, and AVI to MPEG-4 movie format for PSP or other portable video device, MP4 player, or Smartphones.

-Download.com

{/rw_freea} –>

{rw_verdict2}Aimersoft Video Converter is an excellent program; it supports many input and output formats, allows users to perform basic edits on input files, works quickly, and converts with terrific quality. I give Aimersoft Video Converter a thumbs up! On a personal level, I see no reason to drop $35.95 on a shareware video converter when I am very happy and satisfied with freeware video converters such as iWisoft Video Converter and FormatFactory. However, if you are looking for a shareware video converter, Aimersoft Video Converter is one of the best; highly recommended. Do note, though, Aimersoft Video Converter is no different than other Wondershare/Wondershare-owned video converters, so don’t be fooled into buying two of the same product if you are ever put in that situation.
{/rw_verdict2} –>

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31 comments

  1. Karen-In-PA

    @newJason:

    Jason,

    I want to say THANKS for your response to my post! I did download the FLV downloader and it was quite simple to save the video to my computer. It was then easy to run it through the Aimerisoft Video Converter. It did take me a while to get it to import into iTunes. I first saved the file as an AAC file which is the format my other music is in for iTunes but I couldn’t import it. When I saved it as an Mp3 it worked like a charm. I’m still not sure why it wouldn’t accept the other format . . . but at least I found a way to successfully get the job done! From the bottom of my heart I truly appreciate you taking the time to respond to my plea for help & including the link for the FLV downloader program as well. Have a very Merry Christmas!

  2. newJason

    @Karen-In-PA:
    Karen
    this certainly will let you rip the audio from a you tube video so that you may import it into your i-pod touch. here is how you do it.

    1. you need to download the youtube video file to your computer. If you haven’t already. There are many free programs to do this with. check out – http://dottech.org/freeware-reviews/18398
    2. Open the directory where you have stored the downloaded video, open Aimersoft Video converter, then drag and drop the video into the LEFT pane in the converter window.
    3. At the bottom click on the PROFILE arrow, scroll up to COMMON AUDIO, and choose your preferred format. For example MP3.
    4. Click the big blue START button.
    that’s it! you can now import the converted audio file into your i-pod.
    have fun!

  3. Raza Khan

    Salam Ashraf

    Thanks as always for the complete review! I loved Format Factory which you recommended sometime ago. However, I found out that it can not convert .mov files specifically Casio EX-F1 (high definition 1920 x1080) videos. I was looking and they call it Casio MOV files. In any case, I hope this one does.

    Other than that Format Factory is an excellent one as you stated!

    Raza

  4. Karen-In-PA

    I’m quite new to all this. Can someone please tell me if this program will allow me to import YouTube videos and then extract the audio to transfer onto my iPod Touch? I can’t seem to “drag and drop” it unless I’m doing something wrong. Any help with specific steps would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much Ashraf for all your work in evaluating these programs . . . it really means a lot to us newbies!

  5. Lovejoy Peacemaker

    @Giovanni (GAOTD users’ Psychologist…LOL!!):

    I believe you said it all when you wrote “Honestly, I don’t think……”

    because I am a GOTD user and I come here to read Ashraf’s opinions about software and reviews done HIS way not you attempting to tell the reviewer how to review in his own already highly successfull blog

    Thanks Ashraf for all you include in your reviews, they are great as they are!!!!

  6. Geoff LACEY

    A very thorough review – many thanks. There’s one point you might have mentioned, which I think adds quite considerably to the value or usefulness of the programme. We all know that there is NO support with GAOTD offerings. However, the makers of this programme have over-ridden this restriction (See Comment No.2. on the GAOTD page.) and users are invited to “Please feel free to contact our technical support directly at: support@aimersoft.com.”
    Most users are probably unlikely to find it necessary to take up on the offer, but it’s good to see Aimersoft not only offering the programme free of charge today, but also offering technical support.
    Once again, thanks for a great review.

  7. phase

    I like these reviews. They save time with facts and opinions. To me it seems in poor form to go to ones house and give unsolicited advise, however there are rare exceptions based upon the spirit in which it is given.
    Thank you Ashraf for your reviews.

    *Headed over to GOTD to grab this one, can’t beat the price and had/have plans to backup hdd today as well.

  8. Bernard

    Many thanks Ashraf, for your excellent reviews!
    I totally agree with you Aimersoft Video Converter is one of the very best video converters. In fact, I have used it for a long time as my favorite converter, as the output quality indeed is excellent.
    But the version I used is old (GAOTD from nov. 2010 or before), and did not allow good conversions from Mpeg-TS-files (DVB-T recordings with my Hauppauge TV-card). In particular, the Audio/Video synchronisation of the resulting file was bad, and conversion speed was also very low in thís case (!) . In that respect the WinX HD Video Converter Deluxe (a former GAOTD gift) was really much better (thus for Mpeg-TS-files). I therefore an curious to try out this version, to see if now it can handle this files.
    BTW, another very good freeware video converter I’ve found on the Softpedia website is SGI’s video converter. I’d love to hear your opinion !

  9. newJason

    Hey thanks for the very in-depth review. I always enjoy visiting dotTech and seem to learn something new every time I do. I think I will give this program a try. I like the fact that you can do some basic editing before conversion. I have quite a few Flash videos that were recorded live that I have been trying to convert with FLV Converter and SUPER, but It seems that live FLV streams suffer from some sort of time code de-sync and crash FLV Converter and Super does not crash ,but does generate an error. I will try Aimersoft VC and keep my fingers crossed.
    A little off topic ..
    I have a question about your site. Where did you get the script that does the slide show when you click on one of the screen shots in this review? Was that a freebie too? Do you have a review or a tutorial on how you built your site and what tools/technologies it employs? Just curious.

  10. David

    Aimersoft wins over iwisoft’s conversion (Ahsraf’s freeware alternative).

    Having been impressed with iwisoft’s V.converter, I was surprised to discover trimming a wmv format video with it generated blocky results with faster movements.

    Aimersoft’s conversion was flawless. And yes, I tried to make sure all conversion parameters were the same..

  11. benhenry

    I know this is an old thread… but Ashraf mentioned the inability of users to remove the ungainly right-click context menu item that installs with this program. I use this program occassionally and it bugs me, too… the menu item is so long that it makes using other context menu items awkward.

    I discovered an effective way to disable it without affecting the program or any other programs. Search for the “AI_ContextMenu.dll” (probably in System32) and un-register it. To re-enable it, simply register it again.

  12. benhenry

    Thanks again Ashraf and dotTech folks! I purchased the upgrade for this program for 10 bucks partly because of the review and recommendations. I’m using it to rip the music tracks from my family’s dvds… it works great. When I’m ready to learn home video I know I will enjoy the ease of use for the other functions.

  13. Casey

    @dodi
    I’m pretty sure the codecs are the same. If you don’t need the extra features such as cropping or editing a video, SnowFox works just fine. I like to crop my videos before converting so I like Aimersoft Video Converter.

  14. obajoshi

    @Home User: I totally agree with you. Ashraf’s reviews, comments and advice are valuable to different people. YES! really, there are some people who still buy software and greatly appreciate Ashraf’s input. Sure some people want free stuff, others want to buy software but are not tech savvy and such reviews help them to make a decision before buying the software(hereby supporting the developers).
    It is a great service for Ashraf to pass such deals/info to the public and this is what makes his site a notch above the  other ‘freeware’ sites. If you like the price, go ahead and buy it .. if you do not.. you can either get the give away or not.
    Whichever way you decide, you are still a winner and getting a good deal.
    muchas gracias.

  15. Home User

    @Giovanni: I am a reader Ashraf’s reviews and I like the part about his opinion on the price. You said it right when you said “FREE for 24 hours”. That is why I don’t like GAOTD very much. If you have a problem with your computer and lose the program you can’t reload it. Really is kind of a trial software unless you backup your system with that software on it. If you lose it or want to upgrade and have to buy it, then it wouldn’t be free anymore and the price opinion would come into play. I think Ashraf really tries to do a good, fair review and to try and please as many as possible. I guess different people want different things. We are all intitled to an opinion and this is just mine. Thanks Ashraf, for all your time and help!

  16. Giovanni (GAOTD users' Psychologist...LOL!!)

    Thanks Ashraf!! Great review as usual but why bother for the PRICE of this SW if it’s FREE today?

    Honestly, I don’t think your readers and/or GAOTD visitors are worried about this (namely whether or not a GAOTD program is worth its price) for the simple reason that it’s FREE for 24 hours….LOL!!!

    Instead, what they ask themselves are the following questions: is this GAOTD better than other FREEWARE ALTERNATIVE?? Has it more features than its FREEWARE ALTERNATIVE?? Can it give me a better result in terms of output quality?

    So I think that your review could have been better and more complete if you had replied to these questions, taking into account that, as far as I can see from the posts published both here and in the GAOTD forum on a daily basis, 99% of GAOTD READERS are not used to buy any (expensive) SOFTWARE unless they absolutely need it….LOL!!

  17. mohsen

    hi (salam) ashraf,
    i think you should add “feature” entry in your rating system,
    for example output of any wideo convertor that doesn’t support 2 pass encoding will be very low in compare to 2 pass encoders; encoders with variable bitrate, will produce smaller files ; gpu accelerated encoders are much faster in speed ;

  18. Ashraf
    Author/Mr. Boss

    @digish: You are welcome! (If you have the GOTD version of Wondershare Video Converter Platinum from last year, you may want to consider grabbing Aimersoft Video Converter today since it is a lot newer.)

    @Everyone: I noticed Aimersoft is offering a special deal to GOTD users for Aimersoft Video Converter Pro. The Aimersoft Video Converter Pro for $9.95 is an amazing offer (I assume lifetime license) in my opinion. Update: That offer was available in July – it is no longer available.

    While I have not personally used or tested Aimersoft Video Converter Pro, after using Aimersoft Video Converter and having experience with Wondershare DVD Ripper Platinum (Wondershare owns Aimersoft and their software are the same), Aimersoft Video Converter Pro (which does video conversions, DRM removal, and DVD ripping) for $9.95 is a steal in my opinion. The only one thing I would be careful on is if Aimersoft Video Converter Pro is able to pass DRM/region locks on DVDs (the website does not specifically mention DRM/region lock removal for DVDs, so if you are thinking of buying I would suggest grabbing the trial version first to see if it does).