Sony A7/A7R and iMovie/FCE workflow – convert Sony AVCHD to AIC

You can shoot Full HD 1920×1080 60p video files with Sony A7/A7R camera in AVCHD recording format, but the HD experience also brings import issues while loading A7/A7R 60p MTS footage into iMovie or Final Cut Express to do further editing. Then there comes a question, how to import Sony A7/A7R AVCHD 60p videos into iMovie/FCE in a simple way for editing smoothly on Mac? You may read this post to find an answer.
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”Hi, there. Just got my new Sony Alpha a7R Mirrorless Digital Camera. I did a test and recorded some clips in 1080p at 60p. Now I have a problem, when I attempted to import these A7R 60p files to iMovie for basic editing, iMovie refused reading them at all. Why this happen? What’s the correct Sony A7R workflow with iMovie? Please help!”

If you’ve captured 60p AVCHD footage with either Sony A7 or Sony A7R Mirrorless camera, you will be lead to the same situation as mentioned above. That’s because the 60p MTS is a new format above and beyond the standard AVCHD specifications. There are rarely NLEs having native support for the 1080-60p footage. To import the highest quality progressive (1080/60p) Sony A7/A7R footage to iMovie or FCE for editing, you will have to run it through some sort of conversion first. To be able to edit Sony A7/A7R 1080 60p AVCHD in iMovie/FCE, we would recommend that you use Video Converter for Mac to transcode A7/A7R AVCHD footage to Apple InterMediate Codec (AIC), the friendliest editing format for both iMovie and FCE.

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Sony A7/A7R and iMovie/FCE workflow – convert Sony AVCHD to AIC

Followe these steps:
1. Install and run Video Converter for Mac as a Sony A7/A7R AVCHD Converter for Apple. When its main interface appears as below, click on ‘Add File’ to load your A7/A7R 1080 60p AVCHD MTS footage to the program.

2. From the Format bar, choose ‘Apple InterMediateCodec (AIC) (*.mov) as output format from ‘iMovie and Final Cut Express’ column. Note that the AIC codec is also accepted by Final Cut Pro (HD 4.5 through 5), but rarely used in Final Cut Pro as of Version 6 since it now uses the ProRes codecs instead of the Apple Intermediate Codec.

3. Click ‘Settings’ button and go to ‘Profile Settings’ window to custom video and audio settings. (for advanced users)

4. When ready, click ‘Convert’ to start transcoding Sony A7/A7R footage to AIC – the best suited editing format for using within Apple iMovie Version 11, 8, or 9, as well as Final Cut Express.

5. When the conversion process is complete, click on ‘Open Folder’ button to get the generated AIC QuickTime files and open them in iMovie/FCE for further editing.

Also read
Sony A7S XAVC S and AVCHD import issue in iMovie
Import AVCHD movies from Sony A5000 to iMovie and FCP X
How to edit and import Olympus E-PL3 AVCHD video to iMovie?