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Archived - Playing media in QuickTime Player that was created by Apple video editing applications

QuickTime Player in Mac OS X can play media that was created in an Apple video editing application, such as iMovie, Final Cut Express, or Final Cut Studio. Some media may require the codec components that generated the media to be installed.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Playing media in QuickTime Player that was created by Apple video editing applications

Usually, QuickTime Player in Mac OS X can play media that was created in an Apple video editing application, such as iMovie, Final Cut Express, or Final Cut Studio. However, some content may not play back as expected in QuickTime Player if the codec(s) used to capture the content is not installed your computer. These additional codec components are installed on your computer when iLife, Final Cut Express, or Final Cut Studio is installed. If you are not able to play certain media on your Mac, make sure the corresponding software is installed on your computer.

Which codecs are installed by Apple video editing applications?

Final Cut Studio installs the following codec components:

  • Apple Intermediate Codec, AVC-Intra, DVCPRO HD, HDV, IMX, Uncompressed 10-bit 4:2:2, and XDCAM HD/EX/HD422.

Final Cut Express installs the following codec component:

  • Apple Intermediate Codec, Uncompressed 10-bit 4:2:2

iLife (iMovie, iDVD, and so forth) installs the following codec component:

  • Apple Intermediate Codec

Additional Information

What's a codec?

A codec (compressor/decompressor) compresses audio or video when capturing, exporting, or saving digital media content. The same codec is necessary to decompress the content for playback or editing. The file size of media content is also dependent on the type of compression used by the codec.  Two general types codec are:

  • lossy codecs, which tradeoff detail or quality for much smaller file sizes.
  • lossless codecs, which retain all the integrity of the original content, but typically result in larger file sizes.  

Note: Using more than one codec during video production is possible, but this may degrade the media's overall quality in some situations.
 

To learn about the native codec components and media formats used by QuickTime, see this article.

To learn more about extending codec components in QuickTime Player, see this article.

Important: Information about products not manufactured by Apple is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute Apple’s recommendation or endorsement. Please contact the vendor for additional information.
Last Modified: May 2, 2014
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  • Last Modified: May 2, 2014
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