iFlicks, if you’re not already aware, is an awesome app that gets video artwork as well as meta data and then converts and imports your videos to iTunes. Way back when I first started this website, I did a review of iFlicks version 1. If you’ve read that review you know I really like iFlicks.
With the major update to iFlicks 2, we are getting a redesigned interface, better chapter and subtitle support and even faster processing… oh and my favorite new feature, it can now automatically get the squared TV artwork.
Artwork and Meta data
When you are dealing with movies and TV shows in iTunes, you have to keep that library well-organized and looking pretty. Maybe it’s just me, but I can’t sleep right if there’s a movie in my iTunes library that doesn’t have artwork. Don’t even get me started on TV show artwork that isn’t square.
iFlicks was crafted and designed for people that like to keep their iTunes well organized and colorful. Not only does it get properly sized movie artwork but it also gets the square artwork for your TV shows. Don’t like the artwork it selected for you? Just click the little magnifying glass icon and choose a different one (if available):
There are times where your meta data won’t automatically be imported. Sometimes it’s because there is no meta data available, however more commonly it’s just that the video file isn’t properly named. Look at the name difference between these two files:
You can tell just by looking at the first one that it’s Breaking Bad season 4 episode 1. The second one however, is poorly named, I can’t tell what TV show that is… and neither can iFlicks.
When iFlicks can’t tell what something is, you can go to the Meta tab as shown in the screenshot, manually enter the name of the video and if a TV show; the season and episode number. Now press the reload button (very bottom) and iFlicks will get to work on finding the appropriate meta data and artwork.
Presets & Conversion Process
The presets are extremely useful, they make converting very easy. Many other converters require you to manually setup the codecs and framerate. iFlicks takes care of that with its presets. Want to convert a video to your iPhone? Just choose the iPhone preset.
The iTunes compatible preset is extremely fast, and is by far my most used preset. While some of the presets actually convert the video and audio, the iTunes compatible preset simply takes the video and audio and places it in a different container; an iTunes compatible container.
The benefit to this is that it’s makes the process extremely fast and maintains the exact same video and audio quality. How fast? In my most recent test, a 2GB 720 video was added to iTunes in just under a minute.
One thing I should mention, you don’t have to convert it with the iPhone preset to get the video on your iPhone. Once it’s successfully added to iTunes, you can watch that video on your Apple TV, sync it to your iPhone, or stream it over your home sharing network.
Settings, Watch Folders & Rules
As with most applications, once installed it’s always wise to peruse the settings/preferences. This especially holds true in iFlicks. Get to the preferences by clicking on the menubar -> iFlicks -> Preferences.
- Preset: Settings a preset here sets it as the default.
- Delete Source Files: You can also have the source files automatically moved to the trash after it’s been successfully added to iTunes. Once it’s converted and added to iTunes, there’s not really any point it keeping the original as it just wastes space.
- Add to iTunes: And of course, after it’s done converting, you can have it automatically add the video to your iTunes library.
Watch Folders is an awesome feature that automatically scans your desired folders (including sub folders) for new video files. Once it finds a movie or TV show it grabs it and adds it to iFlicks.
In the Rules tab you can tweak many things as well as automate the entire conversation process. The way I have iFlicks setup, is to automatically grab any new videos with the watch folders setting and then automatically convert them and add them to iTunes, without me even having to know that anything is happening.
Adding/creating your own rules are incredibly easy and you don’t have to be technically advanced to know what’s going on. For instance, the above image is a rule I added to my iFlicks process. After it gets all the meta data, the above makes iFlicks automatically convert and add the video to iTunes if it’s a Movie. Basically what the above says is:
- If the video kind is a Movie…
- then add to iTunes…
- after converting with the iTunes compatible preset.
There are many ways to tweak and modify the process with rules in iFlicks 2, so be sure to check it out.
~ Thoughts ~
So, is iFlicks worth my money? If you want an app that makes it incredibly simple to get your TV shows and Movies into iTunes, along with meta data, or you want an app that automates the whole process, then my answer is yes. iFlicks was one of the first apps I ever downloaded on my Mac, and it’s still there to this day. I have used it to convert terabytes of video content, and all that video content looks and works great.
iFlicks is my personal favorite, that doesn’t mean it’s the only solution. There is also another extremely powerful converter called Handbrake that you may be interested in checking out/comparing.