Common Multimedia Format Guide

Part of the Apple TV For Dummies Cheat Sheet

The various extensions on a media file can tell you a lot about what kind of file it is (audio, video, photograph/image, or archive) and what the file does (or doesn't do). The following table runs through the file extensions you're likely to encounter.

Name or Extension Type of File Good For
AIFF Audio Sound effects and archival audio in Mac OS X
AVI Video Playing video clips in Windows
M4A Audio Tracks you've ripped from audio CDs using the default iTunes settings
M4P Audio Playing music from the Apple iTunes Music Store
BMP Image Archival storage of images on CD or DVD
JPEG Image Sending photos in e-mail or displaying on the Web
MOV Video Playing video clips on PCs and Macs
MP3 Audio Playing music on your hard drive or MP3 player
MPEG Video Playing video on PCs, Macs, and Linux computers
OGG Audio Sharing music on PCs, Macs and Linux computers
PDF Document Sharing and printing high-quality documents online
PNG Image Displaying images on a Web page
RAR Archive Archiving and compressing multiple files into one file
TIFF Image Sharing images on PCs, Macs, and Linux computers
WAV Audio Sound effects and archival audio in Windows XP
WMA Audio Playing music on your hard drive or MP3 player
WMV Video Playing video clips in Windows
ZIP Archive Archiving and compressing multiple files into one file
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