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These Are the Most Used Video Formats. How to Choose the Right One?

Andrew Russo
Andrew Russo
Posted in Zoom Feb 9 · 10 Feb, 2023
These Are the Most Used Video Formats. How to Choose the Right One?

Video is the most popular form of content right now because it’s easy to produce and distribute. There are several different ways that videos can be packaged and delivered, depending on their format. But which should you use? This article highlights the most popular and important ones and how to choose the right one for you.

The Most Used Video Formats

The most commonly used video files formats are listed below:


AVCHD (Audio Video Coding High Definition) is a container format for HD video and high-resolution audio, which is supported by the HDCAM family of cameras.


AVI is a container format that can hold audio, video, and subtitle tracks. It’s an excellent choice for editing and playing on a PC or laptop, or any other media player. AVIs are lossless and don’t compress the video as MP4 or MKV do.


MP4 is a container format that can hold many different types of video and audio streams. It was developed by Apple as an alternative to H.264 and other formats, which are used for streaming on mobile devices. MP4 files are supported by all major media players, and because of its versatility, MP4 has become the most popular video format for online video-sharing websites like YouTube or Facebook Live.


MKV is a container format that allows you to store chapters and metadata. It was developed by the creator of Matroska, which was originally created for use with DVDs. The name comes from “Matroska Kompresor,” meaning “matrix compressor.”


MOV is a container format typically used for video files that have been encoded using Apple’s H264 codec. MOV files can be created by using software such as iMovie or Final Cut Pro X on OS X. These files are typically used in situations where you want to export your project from an editing application into another format, like AVI or MP4, for use elsewhere.


WMV is a proprietary video file format developed by Microsoft and used in Windows Media Player. It is the most common video format for Windows, but it’s not supported on Mac or Linux. WMV files contain only compressed video and audio data. You’ll need to download those separately if you want them in your videos.

How to Choose the Right One

The right video format is the most important thing to ensure a smooth workflow. With so many to choose from, you’re probably wondering which video format is best since each comes with its pros and cons.

  • AVI can be used across a range of platforms and programs, making it best suited for content creators and everyday users. However, keep in mind that the file sizes tend to be huge.

  • MP4 is arguably the most used video format as it is said to be universally compatible with all media players.

  • If you’re an Apple or Mac user, then MOV is probably the best option for you as it offers high-definition videos while still retaining small file sizes. However, MOV is only available for Mac and Apple so you may need to consider how to change video file type when using other media players.

  • One of the top reasons to choose MKV is that it allows you to store a variety of information types and codecs in a single file. The only downside is that the audio quality is often not ideal, as it is usually compressed. 

  • If you’re primarily looking to share videos on Windows PC, you should opt for WMV. It’s an excellent option for Windows users, and it offers relatively small file sizes.