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How to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac Fast and Losslessly

MKV is incompatible with majority of the modern mobile devices and platforms, alongside with its comparatively large file size. So, when you trying to open a MKV file on your MacBook or iMac with the default player QuickTime, it ends up with an error message "There is no application set to open mkv" or mkv no sound in QuickTime.

To make MKV playable on most devices and platforms, you need to convert them to MP4 format, as MP4 is compatible well with almost all the players, devices and platforms. In this tutorial, we will share 3 simple yet effective methods to do the job, including some professional MKV video converter that recommended by lots of Mac users.

Part 1: How to Convert MKV to MP4 on Mac with MacX Video Converter Pro

MacX Video Converter Pro is your best mate. It is a totally safe yet clean video transcoder, letting you freely decode and encode MKV videos to MP4, MOV, H.264, HEVC, and any other video and audio formats at the highest performance.

  • Convert 4K and HD 1080P MKV videos to MP4, MOV, AVI, FLV, M4V, H264, H265 and 370+ others.
  • Various editing features available for you to trim, cut, crop, rotate, add subtitles, add effects, and more.
  • Boost the video conversion speed to 47X faster with the support of GPU acceleration and multi-core CPU utility.
  • "Auto Copy" mode ensures you 1:1 quality ratio after MKV to MP4 conversion without changing the underlying codec.
  • Serving for every Mac/PC user, MacX Video Converter Pro satiates those users' needs to compress MP4 Facebook, Vimeo, etc. supported web video format, video size and video quality.

Now follow the steps below and learn how to encode MKV videos to MP4 on your Macbook or iMac.

Step 1: Import MKV file by clicking "Add File".

Free download the MKV to MP4 converter on Mac, or your Windows PCs ( MacX HD Video Converter Pro for Windows). Then click "Add File" button to load the MKV files. You can load multiple MKV files for batch conversion. First, select the video track, audio and subtitle you want to keep in the output MP4 file by clicking the up and down arrow icon behind the source video. You can select multiple audio tracks and subtitle tracks at the same time.

Step 2: Choose the Output Video Format.

After the input MKV video importing, you can see video formats options at the bottom of the window. It allows to freely convert MOV to MP4, WMV/WebM to MP4, MKV to H.264, and even transcode MP4 to MP3, MOV, MKV, and more like a piece of cake. Select MP4 format in HEVC, H.264, MPEG4 as you like, or simply choose preset profiles of iPhone iPad Android.

best MKV to MP4 converter for Mac
best MKV to MP4 converter for Mac
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How to change the MKV format to MP4 without decoding & re-encoding? Choose "Auto Copy" mode. As its name implies, it will 1:1 copy MKV input video/audio, subtitle tracks to MP4 without re-encoding as long as the same codec is detected. Zero quality loss and 10X faster than transcoding!

Auto Copy
Auto Copy

Step 3: Edit MKV Video (Optional).

Meanwhile, you can also see some icons of editing like cut, crop, subtitle, effect, rotate below the video information. If you need to cut off certain parts from MKV video, free set up video Start Time and End Time, add fans made funny subtitled to MKV or rotate MKV video 90 or 180 degrees, you can click the corresponding icon to edit MKV video before conversion.

Step 4: Start to Convert MKV to MP4 Free on Mac.

Hit Folder button to select a destination folder. Followed by a click on "RUN" button, which gives an order to this top video processing tool for Mac to begin to transcode MKV video to MP4 on macOS. Only seconds and you will get the output MP4 files with lossless quality (High Quality Engine tech built-in).

Step 5: Time for MKV to iPhone Transfer. (Optional)

This is not a must-have step, but the one for those who gonna transfer MKV video from Mac to iPhone. You can just use iTunes or free download and launch MacX MediaTrans, if you are annoyed by iTunes complex process, and then enter its "Video" section to "Add Video" from Mac to this video transfer app. Afterwards, give a hit to "Sync" button and then the MKV videos are transferred to your iOS iPhone iPad iPod within seconds only.

Part 2: How to Change MKV Files to MP4 on Mac with VLC

VLC media player is the free cross-platform media player software that is available for Windows and Mac. It can help play most multimedia files as well as discs, devices, and network streaming protocols. And below are the steps to change MKV files to MP4 on Mac via VLC:

  1. Download and Install "VLC media player" from its official website.
  2. Run "VLC media player" on your Mac.
  3. Click on "File" in the top left-hand corner then choose "Convert/Stream" option.
  4. Click on "Open Media" to select and load MKV file.
  5. In the "Choose Profile" section, select "Video – H.264 + MP3(MP4)" as the format.
  6. Click on the "Customize" button if you want to edit the selected MKV file.
  7. Click the "Save as File" button in the "Choose Destination" section.
  8. Click the "Browse" button and select a folder to save your MP4 file.
  9. Finally, click on the "Save" button to start the conversion process.
Convert MKV Files Using VLC
Convert MKV Files Using VLC

Part 3: How to Convert MKV Files with Handbrake

Handbrake is a famous converter for both MKV and MP4. It supports macOS 10.7 and later. The free MKV converter remains popular mainly for its fast speed and good output quality in 2020. Plus, it has some advanced features to let users adjust the bit rate, resolutions, video codecs, quality, other video parameters, add subtitles etc. It will also convert videos to various ready presets for mobiles directly. Therefore, it's another good choice when you need to convert MKV videos computers.

  1. Download Handbrake from it's official site.
  2. Launch it and click Source > Open File to load the MKV file.
  3. Select MP4 in the Output Setting.
  4. Then customize the video settings if necessary.
  5. In the destination section, set an output folder.
  6. Then click Start on the top bar to begin MKV conversion process.
convert MKV to MP4 with HandBrake
convert MKV to MP4 with HandBrake

See Also: Encounter Errors While Converting MKV with Handbrake? Here's How to Fix It >>

Part 4: MKV Conversion Test - MacX Video Converter Pro or HandBrake?

You get the detailed steps to convert a MKV file to MP4 on Mac with 2021 top free video converter from MacXDVD. Yet, some of you might be curious about the specific conversion datas: how long it will take? any loss on output MP4 video quality? would output file size be smaller? any crashes?...

To answer your guys questions, we compare MacX Video Converter Pro with Handbrake to let you clearly see the differences. Let data do the work. Afterwards, I guess you can make a decision to download free MKV video converter or not.

Input MKV (AVC) Video MacX Video Converter Pro
Output MP4 (H.264) Video
Output MP4 (H.264) Video
Length: 3 mins 54 seconds the same the same
Resolution: 1280x720 the same the same
Video Bit rate: 2500 kbps 2741 kbps 2817 kbps
Frame Rate: 23 fps the same the same
Audio Bit rate: 192 kbps the same the same
Channels: 2 the same the same
Audio sample rate: 44 KHz the same the same
File Size: 89.4 MB 66.3 MB 78.7 MB
Conversion Time 38.64 seconds 54.91 seconds
Output Video Quality Excellent Excellent

From the above table, we can see there is no big gap between these two free MKV converters for 2021. In general, MacX Video Converter Pro performs better than Handbrake in video converting speed and video compressing side. Certainly, it's just a single test. You can still download both free MKV converter to have a test if you have spare time. This comparison table just provides you with a reference.

Still have any problem on how to compress MP4 videos on macOS for uploading, storage etc., just Email us >>

Part 5: FAQ on MKV to MP4 Conversion on Mac

Q1: I want to convert a mkv file to mp4 format without re-encoding to keep the same file size and video quality. I need a program that allows me to just drag my 720P MKV video file onto, set it to mp4 and get the file with no quality loss.

A1: In MacX Video Converter Pro, tick on the box of Auto Copy. It convert MKV to MP4 without changing the underlying codec. Also, it can copy a large high-definite MKV few hundred times faster than re-encoding.

Q2: I have a MKV file with subtitle muxed, now i want to convert it to mp4 without losing the subtitle. I already tried the other softwares like Handbrake, rebox.NET and VLC to convert it but the subtitles didn't carry over.

A2: It will depend on the type of subtitles. If the subtitle is in XSUB, SAMI, MPSub, SubRip or others, you can't pass-through the subtitle into MP4. To keep the subtitles, you can either extract MKv subtitles and convert them to SRT or burn subtitle to the video permanently.

Q3: I'm trying to convert an MKV container to MP4/M4V with the existing video and audio codecs (HEVC x265 and AAC audio). I used the "Convert/Stream" function and selected the "keep original video track" and "keep original audio track" checkboxes. But the M4V output file contains only the audio track; the video is missing.

A3: The highest possible reason why you fail to convert .mkv to .mp4 on Mac with HEVC x265 is that x264 works fine in MP4 file container while x265 is not supported in an MP4 container, at least not in VLC.

Q4: I have a lot of HD MKV files that I wish to convert for iTunes. I want a converter, but need to keep the same good quality!! (the videos/movies are 720 and 1080p) Any suggestions please?

A4: iTunes supports video formats including MP4, MOV, M4V, limited types. You can change MKV format to MP4 iTunes acceptable format or directly convert MKV codec to iTunes profile. In case you are a layman and don't know much about iTunes suitable video parameter settings, you'd better resort to the MKV to iTunes conversion with most ideal profile offered.

Q5: Hi anyone know who is best .mkv to .mp4 video converter with high quality video and audio and low Mb size so if its possible. Now I'm using Handbake to convert a 4K MKV file but it takes much mb size (10 mins for 1.5GB). Which will give me the smallest output size with best possible quality?

A5: First of all, file size = bitrate * running time, and bit rate will influence the video quality. If you don't nitpick the video quality, lower the bitrate and resolution to one level below will result in smaller size with acceptable quality. Beyond that, editing features like cropping and trimming will also help. Put aside the objective factors, software design will lead to difference in output size.