Save Adobe Flash Video

You can convert nearly all videos to Flash Video format.

Flash Video (FLV or F4V) is the preferred format for embedding or linking digital videos in Flash movies. Unfortunately, most digital video cameras and popular digital video editing programs, such as Apple iMovie and Windows Movie Maker, don’t export or convert video files to a Flash Video format. The good news is that Adobe Flash CS4 Professional comes with a nifty utility—Adobe Media Encoder—that converts common digital video formats to Flash Video, making it easier to prepare FLV and F4V videos for your Flash creations.


Preparing the Video for Media Encoder

1. Open Adobe Media Encoder. Click the “File” menu and choose “Add.” This displays the “Open” dialog box. Click the “Files of type” drop down option. Note the different file types supported by Media Encoder. Find and make note of a format that your digital video editor can export. Click “Cancel” to close the “Open” dialog box.

2. Open the video file you want to convert to Flash Video in your digital video editor. Export the video to a format supported by Media Encoder. Depending on the software you use, the command for exporting video files is different. In Windows Movie Maker, for example, click the “File” menu and choose “Save Movie File.” In iMovie, click the “Share” menu and choose “Export Movie” or “Export using QuickTime.” If you’re using the digital video editor bundled with your video camera, consult the manual or help files for instructions on exporting to different formats.

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3. Save the video file to the largest, highest quality format available. You should let Media Encoder compress and adjust playback quality during the Flash Video conversion.

Converting the Video in Media Encoder

4. Go back to Media Encoder. Click the “File” menu and choose “Add.” Navigate to the video you want to convert to Flash Video. Select it and click “Open.” (If you have several videos you want to convert, select them all. Media Encoder can convert several files in a single session.) Media Encoder adds the video file to the queue.

5. Click the “Format” option from the drop down menu in the “Format” column beside the video file name and choose “FLV|F4V.”

6. Click the “Preset” drop down option in the “Preset” column and choose an FLV or F4V preset format. The list of presets is long. The current size of your digital video and the target size and quality you need for your Flash movie determines the preset you should choose. For HD movies, for example, choose one of the F4V 1080p or 720p presets. However, if the source video is not already HD, choosing one of these formats can’t make it HD.

7. Click the “Output File” drop down option in the “Output File” column and navigate to the directory where you saved the Flash FLA file in which you want to import the video. Click “Save.” Saving the file here makes it easier to publish and deploy the Flash movie later on.

8. Click the “Start Queue” button in the lower left area of the Media Encoder window to convert the file. Depending on the size of the video file, the conversion could take some time. When Media Encoder finishes converting the file, your Flash Video file is ready for Flash.

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