Reviewed: Geetesh Bajaj
Date Created: May 10th 2007
Last Updated: February 26th 2009
It's very often that users ask for an option to save their PowerPoint presentations to a movie format. And with media distribution options multiplying each day, this is one area that's a sore point with PowerPoint users since PowerPoint for Windows does not provide this ability unlike its versions on the Mac.
PPTmovie, a new product that I am reviewing today allows you to convert any PowerPoint presentation to one of the several video formats it supports -- these output formats allow you to:
- Burn your presentation to a CD or DVD and and play it back on a DVD player.
- Make your presentation-movie available on YouTube or another video sharing site
- Transfer your presentation to a portable device such as iPod, or mobile phone.
- Copy your presentation to a game console like the PSP.
PPTmovie is from PPTexpert, a company based in London, UK. You can learn more about their products, and download a trial version of PPTmovie here...
PPTmovie is user friendly application which converts a PPT file to AVI, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MP4 and even allows to add your narration or record the background music.
My contact at PPTmovie for this review was Natalia Lukicheva- thank you, Natalia.
Download the installer, run the setup routine and follow the instructions. You'll end up with a PPTmovie program group in your Windows Start menu (see Figure 1 below).
Figure 1: PPTmovie Start menu Group
Follow these steps to get started with PPTmovie:
- Go to your Windows Start menu and choose All Programs | PPTmovie
| PPTmovie (see Figure 1 above).
- This opens PPTmovie interface, as shown in Figure 2.
Figure 2: PPTmovie interface
Choose the presentation which need to converted, and choose a destination folder to save the output file.
This is a wizard based interface -- press the Next button to move to the next step.
- This opens the Video Settings window of the interface
as shown in Figure 3. Here you can select the output
video format, codec, and frame rate.
Figure 3: Video Setting
When done, click the Next button.
- This opens the Audio Settings screen of the application
(see Figure 4). Check Record Sound checkbox
to enable sound recording if your presentation contains sound. Alternatively,
you can also use a microphone as a sound input source.
Figure 4: Audio Settings
Click on Next button.
- This brings up the Converter Settings window, as
shown in Figure 5.
Figure 5: Converter Settings
Here, there are essentially two options:
Video file resolution allows you can set output file dimensions in pixels
- Standard video resolution: Choose from the PPTmovie's built-in list of common video resolutions.
- Custom video resolution: Here you can set the custom resolution for your video file.
Advance Slides lets you set the default behavior for progressing slides
- Manually: You'll have to press the Next button every time you want to go to the next slide during the conversion. Useful when you record narrations, or if you want precise control -- or even if your presentation doesn't have automatic slide timings.
- Automatically: Select the number of seconds you
want the slide to appear on the screen
- In the subsequent window, the presentation loads. It may take a while
depending upon the size of presentation (see Figure 6).
Figure 6: Conversion in progress
Press the Record button to convert the presentation into the selected file format.
- While recording do not switch to another window. Figure 7 shows
the recording in progress -- notice the Pause and Stop buttons
are available since I chose Automatic timings. If I had chosen Manual
timings, I would see a Next button.
Figure 7: Recording
- Once the recording is over, PPTmovie will compress the resulting file
-- depending on the output size, this may take a while. When the conversion
is done, you'll see a window, as shown in Figure 8.
Figure 8: Conversion finished
- Thereafter, click the Open folder button to open the output folder,
and play the output movie.
PPTmovie is available in two versions: the Personal version costs $49.95 and the Business version costs $79.95. Both the versions are identical -- the Personal version is for home use while the Business version is required for commercial use.
Support is through email and an online FAQ.
You do need a computer with a higher end graphic card to attain good results with PPTmovie. Beyond that limitation, the product does make the process of converting PowerPoint presentations to movies as painless as possible.