PowerShell Tutorials

How to Compress Videos with PowerShell

Learn how to compress videos with PowerShell and FFmpeg. Reduce file sizes without compromising quality. Step-by-step guide for efficient video compression.


Videos have become an integral part of our lives, whether it’s for professional projects or personal memories. However, large video files can be challenging to handle, especially when sharing or storing them. In this article, we will explore how to compress videos using FFmpeg, a powerful multimedia framework, to reduce file sizes while preserving reasonable quality. We will provide a step-by-step guide, along with explanations on how to modify the script according to your needs. Let’s dive in!

# Function to check if a command is available
function Test-Command($command) {
    $null -ne (Get-Command $command -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue)

# Set the path to the input video file
$sourceFile = "C:\path\to\input\video.mp4"

# Set the path for the compressed output video file
$destinationFile = "C:\path\to\output\compressed_video.mp4"

# Set the desired video bitrate (in kbps) for the compressed video
# Lower bitrate will result in more compression but reduced quality
$bitrate = 1000

# Check if FFmpeg is installed and available in the PATH
if (!(Test-Command "ffmpeg")) {
    Write-Host "FFmpeg is not installed or not in the system PATH. Attempting to install FFmpeg using Chocolatey..."

    # Check if Chocolatey is installed
    if (!(Test-Command "choco")) {
        Write-Host "Chocolatey is not installed. Attempting to install Chocolatey..."

        # Install Chocolatey
        Set-ExecutionPolicy Bypass -Scope Process -Force
        iex ((New-Object System.Net.WebClient).DownloadString('https://chocolatey.org/install.ps1'))

        # Check if Chocolatey installation was successful
        if (!(Test-Command "choco")) {
            Write-Host "Chocolatey installation failed. Please manually install Chocolatey and try again."
        } else {
            Write-Host "Chocolatey installed successfully."

    # Install FFmpeg using Chocolatey
    choco install ffmpeg -y

    # Check if FFmpeg installation was successful
    if (!(Test-Command "ffmpeg")) {
        Write-Host "FFmpeg installation failed. Please manually install FFmpeg and try again."
    } else {
        Write-Host "FFmpeg installed successfully."

# Compress the video using FFmpeg
ffmpeg -i $sourceFile -b:v $bitrate"k" $destinationFile

# Check if the compression was successful and the output file was created
if (Test-Path $destinationFile) {
    Write-Host "Video compression completed successfully."
} else {
    Write-Host "Video compression failed."


How do I modify the script to compress a different video?

  • Replace "C:\path\to\input\video.mp4" with the path to your input video file, ensuring that the file exists and the script has read access to it.
  • Replace "C:\path\to\output\compressed_video.mp4" with the desired path and filename for the compressed output video.

What if I want to adjust the video quality?

  • Modify the $bitrate variable to your desired value (in kbps). Lower bitrates result in more compression but may reduce video quality, while higher bitrates preserve better quality at the expense of larger file sizes.
  1. Can I use this script on macOS or Linux?
  • The script is designed for Windows systems. For macOS or Linux, you can modify the script by installing FFmpeg using the appropriate package manager (e.g., Homebrew for macOS, apt for Ubuntu).
  1. Are there other options I can use with FFmpeg?
  • Yes, FFmpeg provides numerous options to customize the compression process, such as adjusting resolution, frame rate, and codecs. Check the FFmpeg documentation for more details.


Compressing videos with PowerShell and FFmpeg offers a practical solution to reduce file sizes without sacrificing too much quality. By following our step-by-step guide and understanding how to modify the script, you can tailor the compression process to suit your specific needs. Whether you’re archiving videos, sharing them online, or saving storage space, FFmpeg’s flexibility makes it a valuable tool for any video enthusiast. Happy compressing!

I hope this article was helpful! You can find more here: Windows Articles

author avatar
Patrick Domingues

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