If you’ve done any filming with camcorders in the last 15 years or so, you’ll have almost certainly come across AVCHD files. They’re common, versatile, and retain a lot of high- quality video and audio, perfect for shooting and editing documentaries. But what happens when your AVCHD files are simply too huge to handle? That’s when compressing files comes in.

What is an AVCHD file?

AVCHD, or Advanced Video Coding High Definition, was developed in a joint partnership between Panasonic and Sony to create a high definition video file that would work with the video camcorder devices they created.

It was adopted quickly and widespread across the industry, and even companies like the Canon cinema series of cameras incorporated AVCHD due to its versatility and being able to retain high-quality video and audio files.

AVCHD files can also be long. It uses H.264 for video compression, allowing lengthy videos to be recorded and reviewed by professional video creators and cinematographers.

The file format also supports menu navigation and subtitles, making it an excellent format for media presentations on platforms such as DVDs.

The benefits of compressing an AVCHD file

The downside of AVCHD files is that they can be very heavy and cumbersome. This can make it difficult to play them natively and some devices may not even support playing back AVCHD files at all.

Large files can be difficult to view, edit, and share due to the amount of processing speed required, and they also take up more space on hard drives. Compressing an AVCHD file resolves this problem by reducing the file size to make them easier to handle and take up less storage.

Compressing an AVCHD file may reduce the quality of the footage so it’s important to balance the quality with usability. Use video editing software like VideoStudio Pro to compress AVCHD files.

How to compress an AVCHD file

  1. To start, open VideoStudio Pro.
  2. Import your AVCHD file into VideoStudio Pro by selecting the file in the Import screen.
  3. Drag the video onto the timeline in the video layer.
  4. Navigate to the Export screen.
  5. Select H.264/AVC from the Format tab.
  6. Next to Preset you should be presented with a drop-down menu. Here, VideoStudio Pro provides you with a list of premade settings that you can choose from. Explore the options and choose a smaller file size such as Small or Medium to compress your AVCHD file.
  7. If you want to create your own custom settings, hit the Edit icon and adjust the settings accordingly. Reducing the size and the bitrate will reduce the size of the file.
  8. Select the destination of where you want your new file to end up.
  9. Finally, simply hit Start Export to begin compressing the file.


AVCHD files are common, widely used by video creators as they are supported by many manufacturers of camcorders. The challenge is that although they contain high-quality data, the file sizes can be large and clunky to work with. Use VideoStudio Pro to compress an AVHD file into a much smaller size that takes up less storage and is easier to share. Download a free trial of VideoStudio Pro today to get started.

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