Video quality has evolved dramatically over the last decade, enabling much sharper pictures with better colors, not to mention the popularity of streaming services. That evolution is continuing today with 4K Ultra HD and beyond, which asks for new technology to enable video that can still be streamed on the internet at the fidelity users expect.
One of those technologies is called High-Efficiency Video Coding or HEVC, also known as H.265. It’s a popular video compression standard that provides the same video quality as AVC (H.264) while having up to 50% better data compression at the same bitrate. It makes it easier to stream high-resolution content from online video streaming services.
There’s no doubt that HEVC is much more efficient than its predecessors. Most of the streaming industry, as well as popular device and chipset manufacturers, have already adopted the video standard. Despite the vast compatibility, many people still encounter HEVC playback errors even when using an HEVC video player like 5KPlayer or VLC.
Of course, not everyone has access to the latest hardware. Most desktop and mobile hardware released before 2015 doesn’t have a dedicated HEVC decoder. Instead, legacy hardware relies on software to playback H.265 content. Software decoding is particularly an intensive workload, bending older entry-level CPUs to their knees. It leads to choppy and stuttery video playback, resulting in an overall unpleasant watching experience for the users.
If you are also having trouble playing back HEVC/H.265 videos on your older hardware, consider using an HEVC converter. WinX Video Converter is an excellent software for HEVC to H.264 video conversions, which we have discussed below in detail.
Features of WinX Video Converter
WinX Video Converter is a simple yet robust video converter for Windows 10. It lets you convert videos in dozens of popular formats, as well as compress them to smaller sizes. The software also offers preconfigured profiles for Android phones/tablets, iPhone/iPad, smart TVs, game consoles, etc. Furthermore, you can manually adjust the video resolution bitrate, framerate, and audio quality before initiating the conversion.
With WinX Video Converter, you can convert HEVC (H.265) content to the legacy AVC (H.264) standard in easily playable video formats like MP4, AVI, MKV, etc. It has an efficient video encoding/decoding engine, which can take advantage of the PC hardware to provide faster media conversions than other video converter apps. Besides, it’s compatible with a wide variety of hardware, with native support for CPU and GPU acceleration.
The best thing about WinX Video Converter is that it’s free to download. While it extensively supports Windows 10, you can also install the app on Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 operating systems.
Converting HEVC (H.265) videos to AVC (H.264) using WinX Video Converter
AVC or H.264 is a legacy video compression standard. Thus, H.264 decoding works flawlessly on older PCs and laptops. If you have a high-resolution HEVC video file, you can use WinX Video Converter to convert it to AVC in any of your preferred video formats.
For smooth video playback and minimal quality loss, we recommend you to convert your HEVC videos to the MP4 format, as it uses the standard H.264 codec. The whole conversion process goes as follows:
- First, launch WinX Video Converter from the desktop or the Start menu.
- Click the + Video option on the top-left corner and select the source video from your media folder.
Once the video file is loaded, a new window should appear in the app.
- Select General Profiles under the Output Profile Category row in the sidebar.
- On the right side of the window, scroll down to select the MP4 Video (Codec: h264 + aac) profile, then click OK.
- In case you wish to manually adjust the video resolution, bitrate, framerate and configure additional audio-related settings, click the cog icon on the main app window.
- When you are done, click the Browse button below and set a Destination Folder for the converted video file.
You can click Open to access the destination folder directly from the app window.
- Finally, click RUN in the lower-right corner to start the conversion process.
Depending on the video length and PC/laptop hardware specs, converting a high-resolution HEVC video to H.264 MP4 format might take several minutes to a couple of hours.
If your PC/laptop has a dedicated GPU, make sure to tick the box next to one of the GPU hardware acceleration options (Intel/NVIDIA) to decrease the conversion time – assuming you haven’t hit the RUN button yet.
Once the video conversion process completes, you can go to the output folder and playback the converted video with your preferred media player. It should now run fine without occasional frame drops or freezes.
WinX Video Converter is one of the top free HEVC converters for Windows 10. It’s free to download and totally safe to install. You can follow the step-by-step instructions in this guide to easily convert HEVC video files using the software.
Alternatively, you can convert regular video files to HEVC in case you wish to shrink your media file sizes and upload them to the cloud. All you have to do is select the HEVC Video profile after loading up the media in WinX Video Converter.
Although it takes some time and effort to make HEVC videos playable on aging hardware, converting them to AVC (H.264) is one of the only options you have besides upgrading to the latest components.