I have some mkv files, and while Totem plays them perfectly, when i use Devede to burn them to dvd it all gets messed up: the video is ok, but the audio is out of sync.

I did see that Devede does write my dixv avi files correctly to disk.

So i am thinking what the best way could be to convert my mkv for playback on dvd?

I was thinking maybe converting them to avi first? But i did not find a good way for that to happen.

What do you suggest?

  • Related ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=820035
    – N.N.
    Aug 15, 2011 at 10:13
  • 1
    the question asks to convert mkv to avi but the accepted answer is for the other way around
    – user47206
    Feb 25, 2013 at 22:33
  • As far as I remember, it did the job. If I read it know, it seems misleading indeed :)
    – nathanvda
    Feb 25, 2013 at 22:39

8 Answers 8


Handbrake is the best video converter tool I know.

From the details page:

Supported Sources:

Any DVD-like source: VIDEO_TS folder, DVD image or real DVD (unencrypted--protection >methods including CSS are not supported internally and must be handled externally with >third-party software and libraries), and some .VOB and .TS files Most any multimedia file it can get libavformat to read and libavcodec to decode.


File format: MP4 and MKV Video: MPEG-4, H.264, or Theora Audio: AAC, CoreAudio AAC (OS X Only), MP3, or Vorbis. AC-3 pass-through, DTS pass-thorugh >(MKV only)

You can install it via Software Center or sudo apt-get install handbrake-gtk if you use their PPA:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/stebbins/handbrake-snapshots/ubuntu UBUNTU_VERSION main deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/stebbins/handbrake-snapshots/ubuntu UBUNTU_VERSION main

  • 4
    An easier method to install the ppa is to enter sudo add-apt-repository ppa:stebbins/handbrake-snapshots at a command line.
    – 8128
    Aug 29, 2010 at 20:25
  • 3
    @nathanvda Did you run sudo apt-get update after adding the repository? Aug 29, 2010 at 23:25
  • 1
    @nathanvda: Try going into synaptic and searching for handbrake, it's possible the package name isn't 'handbrake' precisely, it may be 'handbrake-gui' or something along those lines.
    – TJ L
    Aug 31, 2010 at 15:56
  • 1
    @nathanvda I added the PPA and was able to install using handbrake-gtk as package name. Updated the answer with the corrected package name
    – Decio Lira
    Aug 31, 2010 at 21:59
  • 1
    Note that HandBrake doesn't support AVI output anymore: handbrake.fr/news.php?article=10
    – pcworld
    Jun 9, 2014 at 23:11

Yes, I agree Handbrake is nice.

However, if you want a simple and easy app, you can use MobileMediaConvertor. It almost converts anything. Website

Arista Transcoder from software center is good too.

  • Those look very interesting. I am going to try those out.
    – nathanvda
    Sep 1, 2010 at 10:36

There is an option called convert/save in vlc "media" option. I think the shortcut key is ctrl + R. It surely converts to mp4. Will this help: http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/linuxanswers-discussion-27/discussion-avi-to-dvd-360138/


For the old "command line magic" I like using mencoder, which is part of MPlayer. Then I use dvdwizard to make the DVD.

The basic command line to convert anything into a PAL 16:9 dvd vob file

mencoder <name of input file> -vf scale=720:576 -ofps 25 -ovc lavc -vf-pre scale=720:-3,expand=720:::::16/9:16,harddup -lavcopts vcodec=mpeg2video:keyint=15:vrc_buf_size=1835:vrc_maxrate=9800:vbitrate=2500:aspect=16/9:vstrict=0 -of mpeg -mpegopts format=dvd -srate = 48000 -o <name of output file>

Of course I never write all that, I have a script that wraps all that and gives me a few "simple" options for things like 2 pass encoding, frame rate, audio codec, removing video noise, and sharpening the picture...

The script is avi2vob.

To convert a bunch of videos to 24fps 16:9 video, with 2 pass encoding and video sharpening

avi2vob -f -2 -s1 -d video1.avi video2.mkv video3.flc

I think vlc supports converting to avi and i think it plays mkv as well.

In media menu there is an option for convert/save

VLC Transcode

  • It does play mkv, I was not aware it was able to convert video.
    – Chris
    Aug 31, 2010 at 12:54
  • How can you use vlc to convert video?
    – nathanvda
    Sep 1, 2010 at 10:38

Even I convert .mkv videos to .avi to play them on my gothic dvd player. The best program to do this seamlessly (according to me, atleast) is Avidemux. :))


I had a similar problem once; If I remember correctly, I fixed it by checking "file already has AC3 audio" or similar in the DeVeDe menu (advanced options). That is, if your MKV has AC3 audio in it ;)


Personally recommend three solutions to convert MKV to AVI.

HandBrake: it's free and has the feature of converting MKV to AVI.


  1. HandBrake is too professional to handle for most people;
  2. It doesn't support MOV as output format.

a video tool which can convert MKV to AVI. It's not expensive and runs well on Mavericks and Windows 8. Most of all, the converted video will keep the same quality with the original video.

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