SMC crashes during conversion

Trying to get video from purchased DVD’s onto v1 e260’s for kids to watch on car trip.  I’m using an (Intel) Mac running OS X 10.5.6, with the SMC running on Windows XP in a Parallels Desktop VM.  I have the video already off the DVD’s and into iTunes and playing on our iPods, but I can’t seem to get it into a format that will work for SMC (4.256).

While I have access to a wide variety of codecs on the Mac side via Quicktime Pro, VLC, ffmpeg, etc., I have nothing funky on the XP side - vanilla XP install, latest security patches, with Quicktime 7.6.  

First I tried the same .m4v format that worked for iTunes.  SMC didn’t get anywhere with it: after 0% converted it said it “has encountered a problem and needs to close”.  

On the off chance that SMC would be better-behaved with a different format, I tried saving it out as a self-contained .mov from QuickTime.  Same result.  Then I tried using ffmpeg to get as close as I could to the native format of the videos that came on the Sansa.  This blew up the file size (30-min video jumped from 500MB to over 2GB), but I had enough room on the player that it would fit even if what SMC output was the same size. This time SMC got to about 25% done converting but then crashed with the same error.

Open to any suggestions here… 

I don’t own a v1 (mine is a v2), but based on what I’ve read on this forum, I would get the freeware “Any Video Converter” (here) and convert your source to .wmv. I would then run it through Sansa Media Converter.

Try creating a new preset in WinFF with the attributes printed in red in this post. Save it with a different name, so you can identify it. This has worked very well for me. I do have to extract the VOB files from the DVD first with another program and then merge the VOB’s with another utility beforehand though. After all this, a run through SMC wil do the final conversion and transfer it to my player or SD card. And yes, the size of the files will sometimes double.

Also, you mentioned you have v1 models. There is already a preset in WinFF for Rockboxed players (v1’s). Thre are several ‘RB’ presets; find the one that says Sansa. Try converting using this. Interestingly, this preset did not work in Rockbox for me, but played without a hitch on the SanDisk firmware. It ends up being .mov format as opposed to .avi for the v2’s or Fuze models.

The bad thing I noticed was that the final picture was much smaller than normal, and you don’t have to turn the player sideways (landscape) to watch the video.

If the m4v is drm protected, you need to remove the drm protected first. You can try m4v converter I usually used. You can find it in