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Importing MOD files... why can't iMovie do it?

29477 Views 9 Replies Latest reply: Dec 28, 2009 10:30 PM by yaelb RSS
machineman Calculating status...
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Jul 10, 2009 9:52 AM
I have searched high and low, and found all kinds of jury rigs and contraptions, none of which seemed to work quite right, and are far too complex requiring extra software.

Why can't iMovie 09 import MOD files directly? When I hook my camera directly, it imports them fine. But if I've copied the files to my hard disk first, it will not recognize them.

I need a simple way to add MOD files from a hard disk into iMovie 09 (and I don't want to "convert" them, preserving the original quality of the source video.

Who can help!?
Mac OS X (10.5.7)
  • ER953010 Calculating status...
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    Aug 8, 2009 10:04 PM (in response to machineman)
    I am in exactly the same predicament! I can import MOD files to iMovie 09 without any problem from my Panasonic SDR-H250 ... but I cannot import the (two years worth) of MOD files I have saved on my external hard drive.

    I thought about trying to move the files from the hard drive back to my Panasonic (and then importing them), but its USB is read only, so that's not an option. Have also tried converting with MPEG Streamclip (including the AU$29 codec download from Apple) but the quality is just awful - completely useless.

    Does anyone have any ideas about how to overcome this? I am a new Mac user (less than 48 hours so far) and I am trying hard not to let this hugely disappointing problem make me regret the decision to switch!
    MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.5.7)
  • findhow Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
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    Aug 16, 2009 8:17 PM (in response to machineman)
    Some digital Camcorder models (I.E JVC Everio) save their videos in the .MOD video format. These files are often accompanied with small .MOI files which contain the videos' time-stamp information.

    Video is recorded in the MOD format can be changed manually to M2V for Mac recognizable. The .MOD format is simply a MPEG2 formatted video file, and if you simply wish to view the files on your computer, it is reportedly safe to rename the extension from .mod to .mpg or .avi

    To convert MOD file to MOV, just download and run this MOD to MOV Converter for Mac for free! It converts MOD to MOV (iMovie, Adobe Premiere Pro and other video editing software, etc) on Mac OS X.

    How to convert MOD to MOV on MAC OS.
    Mac OS X (10.5.7)
  • QuickTimeKirk Level 8 Level 8 (47,350 points)
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    Aug 17, 2009 4:47 AM (in response to machineman)
    As you've discovered, iMovie can import your MPEG-2 format only from the connected camera.
    Easiest workaround is to "mimic" the camera and its file folder structure and move the files to a "Disk Image" (Disk Utility can create them).
    Mount your camera and quit iMovie if it opens. Use the Finder to look at the folder names found on your Desktop for the camera. Note the folder names and directory structure.
    Make a blank Disk Image and create the same folder name and directory structure that leads to your .MOD and .MOI files. Copy (drag) your other .MOD files to the appropriate folder location. Name the Disk Image and save it to the same location as your source .MOD files.
    Open iMovie and then open this new .dmg file. iMovie should now recognize it as if it were the camera.
    Once you've moved all of the .MOD files and tested the Disk Images you can safely delete the original .MOD files to free up space.
    iMac 3.06, (Mac mini and G3 given to the grandkids), Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • nichhit25 Calculating status...
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    Aug 31, 2009 12:29 AM (in response to machineman)
    Useful info about how to import JVC Everio MOD files to iMovie

    You’d better have an external hard drive, if not you can do this on the internal drive of your Mac.

    1) Create a new folder called "Mp_Root" in your external hard drive or the internal drive.
    2) Create another folder named 101PNV01 inside the former one.
    3) Rename the extensions of all your .mod files to .mpg, and put the new .mpg files to the 101PNV01 folder.
    4) Restart iMovie, iMovie will believe you have your camcorder connected, so it will automatically notice these files and import them.

    The above method is available when you just have a few .mod files, but if you have too many video clips like me, it is really troublesome to rename numerous files one by one. Then use third party software like ffmpegX, MPEG Streamclip, and Pavtube Video converter for Mac to convert .mod files to iMovie directly workable formats is much easier.
  • rsalter Calculating status...
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    Oct 2, 2009 10:54 AM (in response to nichhit25)
    I had the the same issue. I found that changing the .mod file extension to .mpg, I lost the audio associated with the clip. Here is my method which worked for me:

    Using Visual Hub I converted all my .mod files to a DV file - this worked and audio was in tact.

    (Visual Hub Settings: DV>NTSC>Ready for FCP (since I was using FCP for my workflow)
    iMac G5, Mac OS X (10.5.6)
  • SvcMgt Chris Calculating status...
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    Nov 14, 2009 6:23 AM (in response to machineman)
    I'm using a JVC Everio (GZ-MS120AU) with iMovie 08 and the Quicktime MPEG-2 Playback Component and importing .MOD files is very nearly as easy as importing DV streams. iMovie 08 detects the camera and imports the video (and audio) without issues as long as the camera is connected and the disk mounts BEFORE I open iMovie.
    iMac 1.8GHz G5, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • JVCMom Calculating status...
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    Nov 26, 2009 2:09 PM (in response to nichhit25)
    I was super hopeful about this method but this did not work for me. Any other tips?
    iBook, Mac OS X (10.6.2)
  • JVCMom Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Nov 26, 2009 2:09 PM (in response to findhow)
    Unfortunately with this method, audio doesn't come over... or, did I do something wrong?
    iBook, Mac OS X (10.6.2)
  • yaelb Calculating status...
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    Dec 28, 2009 10:30 PM (in response to QuickTimeKirk)
    Thank you so much - QuickTimeKirk, it is working!
    Mac Mini, Mac OS X (10.5.8)

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