I have two h.264 encoded .m4v files, generated with Handbrake 0.9.3. They used the same Handbrake preset. How can I merge the two files into one movie, and do I need to do anything special to preserve chapter marks?

In case anyone is wondering, they are "An Evening with Kevin Smith", discs 1 and 2. I also own an older copy of "Se7en" which has the movie split between two sides, so I'll run into this issue eventually when I rip/encode that movie.


Do you have QuickTime Pro?

It's possible to copy and paste H.264 timelines and merge them together with requiring a re-encode.


I can suggest converting these to mpeg1 first and using a simple concatenate:

cat vid1.mpeg vid2.mpeg > combined.mpeg

More details in: ffmpeg faq. Handbrake uses ffmpeg.

  • And then do I just rerun this through Handbrake? Will that degrade quality too much? – Bob King Jul 21 '09 at 2:55
  • I would personally just do everything with ffmpeg. Re-encoding a file multiple times will absolutely degrade the quality. If it was pretty high quality at the start, and you're using 'good' settings I would doubt you will see a big difference though. You need to have a pretty trained eye :) – Evert Jul 21 '09 at 3:48

I made a list of various joining utilities. https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0AjWmZ0umsuZHdHNzZVhuMTkxTHdYbUdCQzF3cE51Snc&hl=en in general Enjoy!


This is the script I use to join my iPhone movies into ONE iPhone movie.



for f in `find $SOURCE_DIR -iname '*.mov' | sort`; do
    clip_name=`basename $f .MOV`.dv
    ffmpeg -i $f -y -target pal-dvd -s 1280x720 $clip_name

cat *.dv > out.mov

HandBrakeCLI -i out.mov -o out.m4v --preset="iPhone 4" --quality=30
  • 1
    Does it still look good? You're basically compressing twice here. – slhck Nov 21 '11 at 23:47
  • You are right, but the end-result is good. – Bjarte Brandt Nov 22 '11 at 7:42

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