PROS / Converting an hour-long video only took 15 minutes with this software application.
CONS / The program produced a substandard picture when the default settings were used.
VERDICT / This is an acceptable video converter, but compared to the other products in our lineup, it comes up short on quality and features.
We can recommend Total Video Converter from EffectMatrix to any true mavericks out there. This video converter software tested pretty well. With minor exceptions, we enjoyed using it. There are just a few holes it would need to fill to move up in the rankings, including adding more customer-support options. However, if you are the independent type, you may get along fine without much help.
In fact, there are quite a few redeeming qualities in this product. For one thing, it can convert almost any video file. Total Video Converter converts all the core video formats we look for in this category (AVI, FLV, MOV, MKV and MP4). More advanced users may want more options; they'll find that this video converter offers 10 of the lesser-used formats. While this will satisfy most users' needs, higher-ranked products offered as many as 20 additional formats.
Unlike most of the products we reviewed, Total Video Converter’s output selection is not presented as a dropdown list of file formats. Rather, it is a selection of buttons located on a separate screen. This works well; the graphics make it really clear which output you've selected.
During our tests, we found that the default setting converts an hour-long video in 15 minutes. And while this is one of the fastest conversion times in our review, the results leave a lot to be desired. Our video experts inspected the converted video for imperfections in the picture. They found noticeable pixelation, compression artifact and blur. These flaws distract from the viewing experience, especially when displayed on a large HD television. You can increase the quality of your conversion, but the trade off is a longer processing time.
The major reason this video converter ranked so low is due to the fact that it omits some of the extra features we look for. For example, the program doesn’t support the new 4K ultra-high definition video standard. It also lacks the ability to download videos from online sites YouTube and Vimeo. Both of these features offer greater value and utility to users. We were also disappointed to see that EffectMatrix, the manufacturer, only offers one method of contacting the company – email. There is no toll-free number or live-chat feature listed on its website, which leaves you with only one way to reach the company in the event you have a question or problem with the program.
If you choose Total Video Converter, you'll get a program that works but has some major drawbacks. You'll also get a decent selection of formats and a fast conversion, but you'll lose all the nice features that make video converter software truly useful.