You cannot directly import MTS files. If iMovie is open when you insert your SD card it should prompt you to either
a. Archive the SD card. (Make a copy)
Now if you have copied the contents of your SD card COMPLETELY meaning you created a folder and have the DCIM, MISC, and Private folders inside it, iMovie will see this as an "archive" i.e. you will be able to navigate File -> Import -> Camera Archive and import the footage.
Note: I do not think ANY video editing software can open JUST the MTS files you need the full structure.
Keeper of TheUnofficialiMovieFAQ.com
As Daniel says, you need to have the complete files structure from an archived SD card, the original card or a direct disk image.
I don't quite understand why you still need the complete file structure these days as it doesn't appear that there are any required files within other folders. There are programs such as Movist, MPEG Streamclip and VLC that will play mts files in all of their glory, so I don't fully understand why these can't be directly imported into iMovie ???
You can convert your mts files with various applications (including MPEG Streamclip I think) into a MP4 / M4V file that you can work with directly to edit
Thanks Guy! I did not know MPEG SC did MTS files and I LOVE that program!
I think different cameras use the MTS structure differently. For instance on my old camera (if I remember correctly) you could rename clips and that information would be encapsulated inside the files in the folder so when you did an import all the information you altered on the camera would be imported with the footage.
Yep, sorry misinformed you - MPEG StreamClip doesn't play or work with native mts files. I just checked! - VLC will play them and I find Movist is the best application for playing them - And its free.
To work with mts, you will need to 're-package' the files using ClipGrab, Voltaic or if you can find it online, the free rewrap2m4v automater script which I think is just fantastic. Takes just a few seconds and then you have a file that you can view or import into iMovie for editing.
I am new to Mac. I knew about the MTS issues. I am trying to import MTS data from my Canon HF200. I cannot get my iMac i7 to even recognize the camera. All the data is still in original form. I tried pulling the card and put that in the iMac SD reader and it still does not recognize the card. Am I missing something?
Could not find a MAC driver and the HF200 is approved.
Frustrating,plug my camera in Win 7 autosyncs the data to my video folder and the import. I thought this would be easier.
Hi Gadget Guitar. Welcome to the discussions.
Things to try.
1) Is your camera plugged in to wall power (not batteries).
2) A USB card reader should work (and no need for batteries)
3) These SDHC cards are formatted as FAT32, and over time they can get fragmented. It helps to reformat them from time to time. Do not do this on your current card (until you have retrieved the footage from it). But if you have a blank SDHC card, try reformatting it using the menu of your camcorder. The menu may call it formatting or initializing the card. After that, try shooting a short clip or two, and see if iMOvie will recognize it.
4) If #3 worked, you still have the issue of how to get the footage off the original card.
I would immediately create a Disk Image of all the card contents. You can create a disk image using DISK UTILITY which comes with your Mac. It can be found by typing Disk Utility into Spotlight (at top left of Mac screen click magnifying glass), or can also be found in the Applications/Utilities folder.
After you have the disk image, you can mount it on your desktop and it will look just like a camera. I would try to see if iMovie can see your disk image. Open iMovie. Open the disk image. Wait five minutes. If it still hasn't recognized the camera, click FILE/IMPORT FROM CAMERA and see if that jogs it.
5) Finally, if that does not work, there are third party products that can process the mts files. THese include Voltaic HD and some of the others mentioned above.
Using iMovie 11 I have been succesful at importing by copying just the AVCHD tree from my camera into a parent directory containing other stuff and pointing the iMovie camera archive importer at that parent directory. The whole camera archive does not seem to be required. Apparently, iMovie looks at only part of the file tree.
I ended up using Handbrake to convert out a m4v of the data I needed. The disc image did not even work. I created a DMG file on the desktop copied the data from the card into the disc image. Copied there are two folders under the folder called private on the camera SD card. iMovie still would not find it as an archive.
Going to move to Final Cut and use that import. Looks like that is working. Just thought the Video would be simpler on a mac.
Just another question. I downloaded Cosmos and VoltaicHD. It worked great, although I wish it would import the Even based upon the date the video was shot. VoltaicHD demo timed out before I could get them all converted.
Question on Voltaic HD. I did default setting of Quicktime and it did not keep aspect ratio. Is this able to be set to maintain same video setting?