In a better-late-than-never move, the free cross-platform video converter Handbrake has finally hit version 1.0. The app had been languishing in beta for more than thirteen years. Handbrake 1.0, a free download for Mac, Windows, Ubuntu and other platforms, lets you convert videos easily from nearly any format to a selection of modern, widely supported codecs. With subtitle support, capable transcoding engine and built-in presets for devices like Apple TV, iPhone and iPad, Handbrake makes it easy to optimize videos for your specific hardware.
It’s something of an irony that Handbrake has finally exited beta at a time of the demise of optical media, especially as Macs no longer feature built-in DVD drives. That doesn’t mean Handbrake is useless—quite the contrary, it’s one of the best cross-platform, open-source video transcoders available on the market at absolutely no charge.
Because developers are currently unable to sign the HandBrake downloads, macOS will flag the app as from an unidentified developer. To work around this, change your Gatekeeper settings to allow apps from unidentified developers, or right-click the app, then selects Open from the popup menu.
Some of the Mac-specific improvements in Handbrake 1.0 include:
- Updated all tooltips
- Added undo/redo support to the graphical interface
- Improved drag and drop support
- Added Open Recent to the File menu
- Added Add Titles to Queue… to the File menu (batch queueing)
- Preview prompts to open in an external application when the internal player does not support the format
- Preview now displays volume and audio/subtitles language selection during playback
- Picture and Filters settings are now part of the main window
- Settings are preserved when selecting a new title (instead of reloading the last selected preset)
- Improved support for importing/exporting comma-separated (.csv) chapter markers
- Queue is now automatically paused when available disk space is low
- When Done action can now be changed directly from the Queue window
- When Done notification is now interactive (reveals the encoded file in Finder)
- Activity Log window is now searchable (press “?”+”f” to activate)
- XQuartz is no longer required for subtitle burn-in
- Updated Sparkle software update library
- Enabled DSA signature checking for improved security
- Usability improvements
- Miscellaneous bug fixes
For the full list of changes in Handbrake 1.0, check out this post. You’re wholeheartedly recommended to grab Handbrake 1.0 directly from the official website. The app requires an Intel-based Mac with macOS Lion 10.7 or later.
Please be advised that downloads are not mirrored on any third-party services, excepting the Linux PPA, so be sure to grab your copy of the app from the only official source for HandBrake. To get the most from the app, check out the new English-only online HandBrake Documentation beta.