Video transcoding watch folder

Hey all, new here but I figured out this automation I’ve been trying to crack for a while, so I wrote it up on my blog:…and-bring-them-back

Basically, I just wanted to send a master QuickTime file to the watch folder on my desktop and then have the output file moved back to the original folder that source file came from. And viola, here it is!

FYI, the transcoders I usually use are Adobe’s Media Encoder or Shutter Encoder, so I just use their built in watch folder functions. I am aware Automator has an encode video function, but that’s not enough control over the output file for my line of work.


Oh! What a great idea. I’m definitely going to use this. Thanks!

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Hey! Doesn’t look like your script download link is working, FWIW.


Sorry about that, download link should be working now.

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Have you explored any methods for automatically picking optimal parameters for the re-encode/transcode?

For instance I don’t care about having the absolute highest quality and would rather have all my vidoes at some optimal balance between size and decent quality. That means re-encoding to HEVC for some, for others reducing the bitrate, and then there are many that are probably at optimal sizes but could use a container or format change for better compatibility with Apple devices.

Going through one by one and testing various strategies on test segments using Handbrake is the best way I’ve come up with, but it’s not realistic to do at scale.

This is an interesting project that doesn’t do what I’m talking about, but it’s adjacent in a way and seems like it might be useful for some (I’m not the creator of it).

Thanks! Looks like fun, but each video is different for clients and different stages of a project, and since this is what they’re paying us for, I do need to manually set each transcode.
But, 90% of our deliverables are the same/similar codecs and bitrates, so I have presets in Adobe Media Encoder and Shutter Encoder for those, so it’s not much of a hassle to customize each deliverable.
Love all the transcoding tools!