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I'd like to cut out clips from an .mkv video.

How can I do that, without recompressing the file?

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Boilsoft's MKV splitter is what you need

Boilsoft Video Splitter is very powerful MKV Splitter and MKV Cutter, split MKV, cut MKV without re-encode, So It is very fast and without any quality loss.

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I have tried this application, it does not support mkv so well, although it claims it does. – Starx Jan 24 '11 at 13:37

FFmpeg supports MKV, and should let you capture a given portion of the input file without transcoding.

Remember that MKV is just a container, so you may need to set the output video and audio codecs to match the input.

For example, to cut out 20 seconds starting from 1:50 minutes, use:

ffmpeg -i input.mkv -ss 00:01:50 -c copy -t 20 output.mkv

The -ss option can be placed in front of -i, resulting in faster copying but less accuracy. If you experience out-of-sync audio or video, you're going to have to re-encode the file though:

ffmpeg -i input.mkv -ss 00:01:50 -c:v libx264 -c:a libfaac -t 20 output.mkv
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