AVI vs MKV 2024| Which One is Better?

MKV and AVI are audio/video/image container file formats offering lossless compression files. Comparing these two formats cannot result in one winning the argument since both offer pros and cons. Find out more about both software!

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Melissa Lee

Updated on Mar 21, 2024

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The Internet sometimes offers you two formats to choose between when you want to download a movie online. Those two formats are AVI and MKV. Both being media container formats that share a lot of similarities but are still different in many ways. That's why it has been confusing for many people to choose one, not knowing the detailed features of each format.

Here is a detailed guide that will demonstrate to you the clear differences between AVI vs MKV and insightful light on each format. Keep reading to find out how to convert between these two formats with the best free video converters.

AVI vs MKV: Which One is Better?

Remember, MKV and AVI are container formats, not the encoding ones. The quality is determined by the codec more. For example, two different files played using the same codec will give the same quality. But there still are factors that determine a file's status as the container format. Let's find out!

For compatibility, AVI goes with mostly windows-based media players. You can play this format on Android and Microsoft devices but not commonly on Apple devices. MKV can go with any media player but, portable devices do not support it.

AVI is smaller in size. The size difference is due to the compression features available as it does minimal compression keeping the subtle details. On the other hand, MKV makes larger files. So, it troubles uploading the file on digital platforms like YouTube. This format focuses more on reducing the size no matter how content details are lost.

MKV being the container format, requires one to decode the content contained in the file. AVI is also the container format made by Microsoft using the source code that is not based on any standards. AVI files require more power as compared to MKV files for decoding all the video frames. MKV will work for you if you want to live stream or upload the content on a video-streaming site. For those who need the video for watching purposes, AVI is the right choice.

How to Convert AVI to/from MKV

Two tools are introduced in this part. Choose one of them as you like. 

Tool 1. EaseUS Video Converter

As a representative of a beneficial media converter, EaseUS Video Converter meets all basic needs of your converting needs. One function is batch conversion, so you don't have to convert AVI files one by one. Convert AVI to MKV is very efficient. 

Also, you can convert AVI to other formats like AAC, AC3, AIFF, FLAC, OGG, etc. Here are more functions you can follow. 

Main Features:

  • 30X faster converting speed to optimize the process
  • Change the resolution of the imported video
  • The quality of the converted file can maintain the same
  • Extract the target audio from the video file
  • Combine all target files to save space

To convert your AVI files to MKV, try this fantastic tool!

How to make the conversion, using this Windows converting software:

Step 1. Import Target Videos

Open EaseUS Video Converter. Click "Video Converter" > "Choose Files" to import videos. If you have several files in a folder, you can directly import the folder by clicking the down arrow icon next to the plus icon and selecting "Add Folder".

Import files

Step 2. Adjust Settings for Output Files

Click "Settings" to select the output format, and your desired quality and resolution. 

Choose output format

For advanced settings, you can click "Edit" to change the output file's parameters or file name. 

Video output settings

Step 3. Start Conversion

Go back to the main interface, you can change the saving path by clicking the down arrow icon at the bottom. Then you can click "Convert" or "Convert All" to start your video conversion task.

Start video conversion

Step 4. View Converted Files

Once done, click "Finished" to view your converted files. Here you can play, rename, or delete your output files flexibly.

View output file

Tool 2. ConvertFiles

After reviewing AVI vs MKV, you may want to know the converting steps. ConvertFiles offers an easy way to convert between AVI and MKV. This tool has a strict policy for your data safety. So you don't need to worry about getting your videos indexed before uploading, as this tool deletes the uploaded and converted files from their server within a day.

Following only three steps to convert, any naive person can navigate through this online tool. Concerning the conversion speed, it takes seconds for small files. The speed depends on the file size, but this tool is faster than most other converters. You don't even have to install it on your device because it works online.

convertfiles convert avi to mkv

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to convert AVI to/from MKV format using ConvertFiles:

Step 1. Open the ConvertFiles on your browser.

Step 2. Click "Input Format" and select the file format that needs to be converted from the drop-down list. Then, click "Browse" and choose the file you want to convert. Then, choose "Open".

Step 3. Select the target format from the "Output Format" option of the drop-down menu. Press "Convert". 

What is AVI Format?

AVI is the abbreviation for Audio Visual Interleave. This is a multimedia container format developed by Microsoft and the standard format for video files on Windows devices. Also, it supports different codecs. It is a lossy compression format but, it uses less compression and takes more storage than other files. Moreover, you can create an AVI file without compression.

The AVI gained popularity due to its simplicity and compatibility across different platforms. It's mainly used for streaming audios and videos in a synchronized playback. Moreover, AVI helps in creating playable DVDs and disks to store information.

You can play an AVI file without the support of a particular software application. The compression of AVI should be done precisely, considering your device space and video use. The hugely compressed file has low-quality, while an uncompressed one will take up huge storage space. This format can offer the required quality results.

What is MKV Format?

MKV is an abbreviation for Matroska Multimedia Container. It is designed to contain different audio/video content, still images, and subtitle tracks. What distinguishes MKV is its ability to store multiple files in one file. It means that a movie can be encoded in dual language audio tracks in one file and, you can play any track individually.

Moreover, MKV files have excellent compatibility with media players, devices, and software. You can add metadata to an MKV file without having to re-write the whole file. MKV digitally represents the files contained in the MKV file extension.

It has extensive usage due to its ability to create subtitles. Like AVI format, it can be lossless. Depending on your usage, you can control the compression. For example, a file that needs to be streamed should be lossy and small in size, while the file you tend to enjoy watching can be larger but should be lossless.


It's common to get confused when you face AVI vs MKV since the Internet lets download media through these two formats. One thing to keep in mind is that these two formats do not determine the ultimate quality. These are just the container formats that depend on the codecs used for their quality.

You can still consider a few factors, including the compression level, compatibility, and the ability to hold subtle pixels in a frame. If your file should be compatible with almost any device, choose AVI. Otherwise, you can choose MKV.

To make the conversion between these two formats, choose EaseUS Video Converter.

EaseUS VideoKit

All-in-one Video and Auido Tool

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