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6 Best Ways to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac

By Cecilia Hwung | Last Update:

Wonder how to convert MKV to MP4 on Mac? You've landed on the right place. Imagine you've just downloaded a series of episodes from your favorite show, only to find they're all in MKV format. You're excited to transfer them to your iPad for an upcoming long-haul flight, but there's a hitch - your device supports MP4 files, not MKV. This scenario is too common. Despite MKV's versatility, the compatibility and convenience of the MP4 format are often preferable. Thus, many of us are looking into how to convert MKV to MP4. The challenge, however, lies in converting MKV files to MP4 on a Mac-a task that becomes even more challenging if you want to keep the subtitle tracks and the original quality during the conversion process.

Therefore, in this post, we're going to show you 6 of the best ways to convert MKV to MP4 on Mac. Whether you want to change MKV to MP4 on Mac while preserving subtitle tracks, maintaining original fidelity, or rapidly processing a large video library, you'll find the right approach here.

6 Best Ways to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac at a Glance

  Pros Cons
Method 1
(Best Overall)

  Intuitive UI. 0 learning curve

  Remux MKV to MP4 (No quality loss)

  Transcodes MKV (No visible quality loss)

  Keep subtitle tracks or add/extract new ones

  Up to 47x real-time faster conversion

  Handle 370+ input formats

  Can edit/compress/download videos

  Not available on Linux

Method 2

  Many preset options

  Batch conversion

  Limited output formats (MKV, MP4, WebM)

  Confusing interface for beginners

  Slow conversion

Method 3

  No pop-ups or ads

  Free of charge

  Play popular video files

  Outdated interface

  Difficult for batch conversion

  Slow speed and high CPU usage

  No support for MKV remuxing

  Noticeable quality loss

Method 4

  Support many formats

  Fast batch processing

  Highly customizable

  Command line only, no GUI

  Steep learning curve

Method 5

  Browser-based

  Visible quality loss

  Can't keep subtitles

  Lack customizable options

  Performance heavily relies on network speed

  Free accounts are restricted to 50MB per file

Method 6

  No need extra download

  Horrible quality loss

  Can't keep subtitles

  Offer few options for customization

  Not allow for 1080P/4K output

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac Using VideoProc Converter AI

VideoProc Converter AI stands out as one of the most user-friendly MKV to MP4 converters for Mac users. Its clean and self-explained interface makes navigation fluid. With the support for more than 370 input formats to over 420 output formats, you can convert MKV files of any type, including torrented movies/TV series, OBS recordings, and more. Check some of its highlight features:

  • Remux MKV files to MP4 on Mac in seconds without quality loss.
  • Convert MKV files to MP4 or 420+ more formats on Mac with top-notch quality.
  • Keep subtitles with flexible options to add/remove/extract/download subtitle files.
  • Bulk convert videos at 47x faster speed, powered by full GPU acceleration tech.
  • Built-in tools for video compression, editing, downloading, recording, and more.
Free Download For Win 7 or later
Free Download For Mac OS X 10.6 or later

Note: The Windows version now supports AI-powered Super Resolution, Frame Interpolation, and Stabilization to enhance video and image quality. These AI features are not yet available in the Mac version but will be coming soon.

How to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with VideoProc Converter AI

Step 1. Open the Video Converter

Download, install, and launch up this easy MKV to MP4 converter for Mac. Hit Video on the main interface.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via VideoProc Step 1

Step 2. Turn MKV to MP4 on Mac

Hit Video. Drag and drop the MKV file(s) into this program. Hit Target Format, look for MP4 and select MP4 (H.264), MP4 (HEVC), MP4(MPEG4), or any other MP4 format that suits your need. Hit Done.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via VideoProc Step 2

Step 3. Keep Subtitles (Optional)

Click Subtitle Disabled to find the subtitle track included in your MKV file. Select the subtitle track that you want to keep.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via VideoProc Step 3

Step 4. Start the Conversion

If you're transcoding MKV to MP4 on Mac, uncheck Auto Copy. If you're remuxing, make sure Auto Copy is checked. Then, click Run to begin converting your MKV files to MP4 on your Mac.

Should You Remux or Trancode MKV to MP4?

Choosing whether to remux or transcode your MKV file to MP4 on Mac depends on your needs and the specifics of the file you're working with.

Transcoding MKV to MP4 on Mac allows for adjustments to be made to the video and audio codecs, subtitles, frame rate, bitrate, and more. This process involves decoding the original file and re-encoding it into the new format, which typically results in some quality loss. However, tools like VideoProc Converter AI leverage advanced x265 entropy encoding technology to minimize this issue, ensuring that there's no perceptible loss in quality.

Remuxing MKV to MP4 on Mac is a process that changes only the container format of the file, leaving the original codecs and other properties intact. This method is incredibly quick and does not result in any quality loss, which is ideal if the codecs used in the source MKV file are already MP4-compatible and you do not wish to alter the file's content in any way—only its format.

Video tutorial: how to convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with VideoProc Converter AI

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with HandBrake

HandBrake is a free, open-source tool initially designed for DVD ripping but has since evolved to support basic video file conversions. With the capability to handle a wide array of video formats, including MP4, this tool is especially beneficial for Mac users who want to convert MKV to MP4 free of charge. It has presets optimized for devices like Apple, Android, and gaming consoles for easy conversion. Additionally, it offers customizable options such as bitrate and frame rate adjustments, allowing users to find the right balance between conversion speed and output quality. However, what's worth noting is that HandBrake's support is limited to a few video formats, excluding popular ones like AVI, MOV, and VOB, and it does not support audio format conversions. This limitation might not make it the ideal choice for users who require frequent conversions across a broader range of formats.

How to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with HandBrake

Step 1. Install the latest version of Handbrake on your Mac.

Step 2. Click Open Source and choose the original MKV file that you want to convert to MP4 on Mac for importing to this freeware.

Step 3. Go to the Summary section, and choose the MP4 file for the Format option. By default, align A/V start is selected. Depending on your need, you might want to check the option of Web optimized for sharing the output MP4 file on the web.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via HandBrake

Step 4. Handbrake offers you a full set the control options for adjusting the encoding settings of the output MP4 file. For instance, you can hit Dimension and then adjust the display size and aspect ratio, etc. You can also hit Video to find the options for adjusting the video codec, profile level of the chosen codec, frame rate, bitrate, etc.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via HandBrake

Step 5. Click Browse and choose the output folder for holding the MP4 file.

Step 6. Click Start to start converting MKV to MP4 on Mac using HandBrake.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with VLC

You may already be familiar with VLC media player, a versatile tool installed on many Macs, renowned for its ability to play a vast array of video and audio formats, both common and obscure. However, a less-known feature of VLC is its capability for video conversion, discreetly tucked away under the top menu bar. This powerful function allows you to convert MKV files into MP4, AVI, and a plethora of other formats, with support for advanced codecs like VP8, VP9, and HEVC. To fully leverage the MKV to MP4 conversion feature, a bit of patience is required to navigate VLC's complex interface. Yet, those willing to explore will find a full range of options to fine-tune codec selections, frame rates, and bitrates to their preferences.

How to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with VLC

Step 1. Install the latest version of VLC media player on your Mac. Open it and click on File and choose Convert / Stream to navigate yourself to the Convert & Stream panel.

Step 2. Click Open Media and choose the original video file that you want to convert its format from MKV to MP4 on Mac.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via VLC Step 2

Step 3. Go to the Choose Profile section and select Video – H.264 + MP3 (MP4).

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via VLC Step 3

Step 4. Suppose you want to customize the output format, click Customize. This will open up a new panel where you can adjust the encapsulation format, video codec, audio codec, and subtitle settings. Click Apply to apply the changes. However, we don't advise beginners to make adjustments here, as a simple misstep may cause issues like black screens, audio loss, crashes, and more.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via VLC Step 4

Step 5. Click Save as File and hit Browse. A small panel pops up and here you can name the target file and choose the output direction. Click Save to confirm.

Step 6. Click Save on the Convert/Stream panel to start converting MKV to MP4 on Mac.

Step 7. Rename the extension name from .m4v to .mp4. That's it.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with FFmpeg

FFmpeg is perhaps the engineer's favorite pick for converting MKV to MP4 on Mac. This highly flexible and completely free program excels in converting across a vast array of popular and obscure formats. It allows users to meticulously control the output quality, conversion speed, and even CPU usage during the process. However, the main challenge of this MKV to MP4 converter for Mac is its accessibility to beginners. Lacking a traditional graphical user interface (GUI), it operates entirely through command lines. This means that newcomers to video conversion must dedicate significant time to learning how to properly set up FFmpeg on a Mac and to master the commands needed for efficient MKV to MP4 conversion. This steep learning curve can be daunting, but for those willing to invest the effort, FFmpeg offers unparalleled control and flexibility.

How to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with FFmpeg

Step 1. Go to the Utilities folder within your Applications folder to find the Terminal app. Alternatively, search for it using Spotlight. Click it to launch it.

Step 2. Input the below command and press Enter to install HomeBrew on your Mac.

/bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install.sh)"

Step 3. Type the following command into the Terminal and press Enter to install FFmpeg on Mac. The process might take a few minutes depending on your internet connection and the speed of your computer.

brew install ffmpeg

Step 4. After the installation process is complete, you can verify that FFmpeg was successfully installed by typing the following command and pressing Enter:

ffmpeg -version

Step 5. Enter the command for converting MKV to MP4. Many commands can help you convert MKV to MP4. Two of most used ones are:

ffmpeg -hide_banner -y -i input.mkv -c:v copy -c:a copy remux_output.mp4

ffmpeg -hide_banner -y -i input.mkv -c:v prores -c:a copy transcode_output.mp4

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac Using Zamzar

Zamzar is an excellent choice for Mac users who need to convert MKV files to MP4 format without the hassle of installing any additional software. With the support for over 1000 types of files, it can convert videos from MKV to MP4 directly in your Mac's browser and also manage the conversion of images, music, and documents. However, like many online tools, Zamzar has its drawbacks. For example, free users can only convert MKV files smaller than 50MB. Even with a business plan subscription at $49/month, you are limited to uploading MKV files no larger than 2GB, making it difficult to convert large movie files from MKV to MP4 on a Mac. Additionally, Zamzar lacks advanced options for controlling codec, bitrate, and frame rate. Even worse, the process of uploading, converting, and downloading files may be slow due to poor network connections.

How to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac Using Zamzar

Step 1. On Safari or any other browser installed on your Mac, navigate to the official site of Zamzar. Click CONVERTERS and Choose VIDEO CONVERTERS.

Open Zamzar on Mac

Step 2. Click Choose Files and select the source MKV file for adding to this online video converter.

Step 3. Click Convert To and choose mp4 from the drop-down list.

Step 4. Hit Convert Now to start converting MKV to MP4 on Mac using Zamzar.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via Zamzar

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac Using Finder

Finder on your Mac is more than just a file management tool; it's also equipped with a handy Encode Selected Files feature allowing for the straightforward conversion of MKV files to MP4. However, this functionality comes with its limitations. For instance, it cannot customize common settings such as the container format, audio codec, video codec, and video bitrate. Moreover, Finder restricts output resolution to a maximum of 1080p. This means if you're looking to preserve the 4K 2160p Ultra HD quality of your MKV videos, Finder might not be the ideal pick.

How to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with Finder

Step 1. Launch up Finder on your Mac. Navigate to the MKV file that you want to change its format into MP4. Right-click on it.

Step 2. Choose Encode Selected Video Files to open the Encoded Media panel.

Step 3. Choose the target resolution. Choose Greater compatibility or Higher quality for the option of Encode.

Step 4. Click Continue to start converting MKV to MP4 on Mac using Finer.

Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac via Finder

FAQs

Can you convert MKV to MP4 on Mac without re-encoding?

Remuxing an MKV file to MP4 is often possible, provided certain conditions are met. Since MKV and MP4 are both container formats supporting various audio and video codecs, the codecs in the MKV file must be compatible with MP4. Additionally, the codecs used in the MKV file must be supported by MP4. If these criteria are fulfilled, you can use VideoProc Converter AI or a similar program that supports video remuxing to remux MKV to MP4 on Mac without the need for re-encoding.

How to Convert an MKV with Subtitles to MP4 on Mac?

To convert an MKV with subtitles to MP4 on Mac without worrying about subtitle loss, just go with VideoProc Converter AI. Here's how:

  • Step 1. Install and launch VideoProc Converter AI on Mac. Hit Video and drag the source MKV files with subtitles for adding to the program.
  • Step 2. Click the drop-down option of Subtitle Enabled to find the subtitle files included by the MKV file. Select the needed subtitle files.
  • Step 3. Go to the bottom of the program and choose the desired MP4 output format. Hit RUN to start converting MKV to MP4 with subtitles.

About The Author

Cecilia Hwung is the marketing manager of Digiarty Software and the editor-in-chief of the VideoProc team. She pursues common progress with her team and expects to share creative content and useful information with readers. She has a strong interest in copywriting and rich experience in editing tips.

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VideoProc is a primary branch of Digiarty Software that is a leading multimedia software company founded in 2006. It endeavors to provide easier hardware-accelerated video audio editing and conversion solutions. The installed base of the VideoProc product has reached 4.6 million units from 180 countries since its release 5 years ago.

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