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Is there a way to encode/decode prores mov files (mostly decode)? I've been playing around with ffmpeg and mencoder/mplayer from the ubuntu repos, but they both report that it's an unknown codec. Totem as well.

I guess it comes down to getting the right codecs in place. Maybe compiling from source?

I have seen a few comments on the internet about getting mplayer/mencoder working with prores files in OS X, but I'm hoping there is a way to do this in Ubuntu.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Times have certainly changed and now an up to date FFmpeg, including the version packaged with Xenial Xerus LTS, will now easily encode ProRes files. Try something like the following:

ffmpeg -i input.mp4 \
       -c:v prores -profile:v 3 \
       -c:a pcm_s16le \
       output.mov

The available -profile settings are as follows:

-profile 0 = Apple ProRes Proxy
-profile 1 = Apple ProRes LT
-profile 2 = Apple ProRes 422 for SD (lower bitrate)
-profile 3 = Apple ProRes HQ for HD (higher bitrate)

For playback you should find that most of the major media players, examples being MPlayer and VLC, will happily play these files...

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The short answer is unfortunately "no". There are patches floating around that enable Qt binary codec loading in MPlayer / mencoder, but they seem to be Mac-only.

ffmpeg supports DNxHD on Linux, which is a ProRes alternative that you may want to look into as an intermediate codec.

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This is unfortunate. Hopefully progress will be made in this are. Though I would imagine it's not easy to work with proprietary codecs. – gregghz Oct 21 '10 at 5:52

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