How to Convert and Import DVD files to iMovie

Last Updated on January 12, 2021 by Lucas Silva


When it comes to Apple’s lineup of Mac laptops if there’s one area that stands out is their video editing capabilities. Macs are some of the most powerful laptops anybody can get for graphical tasks and this is completed with their premier iMovie software. iMovie is not only free with the purchase of any Mac or iOS device but it’s overall a really powerful tool.
iMovie allows users to thoroughly edit video files and comes with really useful presets that can significantly speed up video creation. That said if the video you want to edit is currently on a DVD that does raise a question. How can I load it? If you want to know how to import DVD to iMovie you are in the right place. Today we’ll look at the easiest way to convert your DVD and make sure you can easily edit it through iMovie. So stick with us and let’s make the most out of both your DVD and iMovie.import dvd to imovie banner

What Formats Work with iMovie?

The first thing to keep in mind is that you can’t directly import DVDs to iMovie. The native DVD format is not compatible with iMovie, and the software doesn’t count with a built-in option to convert it directly.

In short, we have to convert the content of the DVD to be able to edit it through iMovie, there’s no way around that fact. However, we can’t just convert it to any format. As with most Apple products iMovie is rather specific as to what files it loads and which ones it doesn’t. Normally this isn’t an issue as most Apple media works on the same formats, but DVDs are another story.

Tips: iMovie Compatible Formats:

  • Video Formats/Encoder: XAVC-S, Photo JPEG, MPEG-4 SP, Motion JPEG (OpenDML only), iFrame, HEVC, HDV, H.264, DV (including DVCAM, DVCPRO, and DVCPRO50), AVCHD (including AVCCAM, AVCHD Lite, and NXCAM), Apple ProRes, Apple Intermediate Codec, Apple Animation Codec.
  • Video Container Formats/File Extention: MP4, MOV(QuickTime), M4V, AVI, 3GP.

Currently, there are roughly 13 video formats compatible with iMovie, but most of the Apple Codecs are too complicated to work with. So instead we’ll focus on the most common formats that nonetheless keep a good video quality. And that leaves us with MPEG-4, H.264, HEVC, or Apple ProRes. Out of these, MPEG-4 and H.264 are by far the most common and widely supported format, so moving forward we’ll focus on them primarily.

Best Way to Rip and Import DVD to iMovie(Including Homemade and Commercial DVD)

Once you know what format you need for iMovie, we need to get a DVD ripper. As we mentioned before iMovie does not naturally convert DVDs so we need to rely on an external program. For this, we heavily recommend you use echoshare DVD Ripper.
echoshare DVD Ripper has various advantages that make it an ideal pick: It’s available as a free download, it’s really intuitive and it’s very fast. So with all of that in mind, it’s definitely the best option to rely on.

Part One: Rip DVD to iMovie Format

Step 1. Run the converter on your Mac
Just click the button below to download your copy of the program. You can use the recommended installation so there’s no need to worry about that.

win download for free
Mac Download for Free
win download for free
Mac Download for Free

Once the program is properly installed insert your DVD and open echoshare DVD Ripper.

Tips: If you are using a MacBook with no built-in optical drive, and you want to import DVD to iMovie, then you will need to get an Apple USB SuperDrive and set it up on your Mac, so it can read the DVD for you.

Step 2. Load the DVD Files
Once you are on the program screen you just have to take a few simple steps, and the instructions are on the window too so there’s no chance to get lost.

Click on the Load Disc icon and choose your DVD.dvd ripper for mac

Then the program will load your DVD for further operations.loading dvd on mac

Now that your DVD is loaded let’s check the bottom options.dvd ready to be ripped

Step 3. Select an output format to import DVD to iMovie
echoshare DVD Ripper allows you to organize most of the settings you need on this screen, but for the time being, we care about Profile.dvd ready to be ripped

Look under Profiles > General Video, then select MPEG-4 video(*.mp4) or H.264/MPEG-4AVC Video(*.mp4) if you need to shrink the DVD video file, this means that the DVD will now be converted to that format.

Step 4. Set Output Folder
You can choose the Destination of the resulting file here too, we leave that to your personal preference.

Step 5. Start to convert DVD to iMovie
Once that’s handled you can simply press the Convert button and your DVD will now begin its conversion process. The duration of the conversion will depend on the length of the DVD, but thanks to echoshare DVD Ripper it shouldn’t be too long.ripping dvd on mac
As soon as the conversion process ends you’ll be able to open your new MPEG file on the destination folder, and that’s really about it. This new file will be fully compatible with iMovie and has all the video that the original DVD did. There’s nothing else you need to do since echoshare DVD Ripper takes care of all the fine details. You are now ready to edit your DVD with iMovie.

Part Two. Import DVD file to iMovie after ripping

Launch iMovie on your Mac, then open the output file folder. You can click on the DVD file you just ripped and drag it to an event in the Libraries list. Then you can edit the video on iMovie.

Follow the guide here to edit video on Mac: Edit Ripped DVD Video File on Mac

In fact, echoshare DVD Ripper can do more than ripping. This program offers abundant editing features, making it a better alternative to iMovie. With this all-in-one DVD ripper, you can:

  • Add video effect, changing the parameter like Brightness, Saturation, Contrast, and Hue;
  • Add watermark;
  • Add 3D effect to the video, like Anaglyph, Slide by Slide (Half-weight), Slide by Slide (Full), Top and Bottom (Half-height), Top and Bottom (Full), and Depth;
  • Add background music;
  • Clip, split, and merge video;

win download for free
Mac Download for Free
win download for free
Mac Download for Free

Related Articles: