AVCHD (Advanced Video Codec High Definition) is a file format commonly used by the latest generation of consumer HD camcorders. It consists of an AC-3 audio stream and an AVC (H.264) video stream encapsulated into a custom MPEG2 transport stream container.
While Expression Encoder 2 does not natively support that file type, it is possible to use them if the right components are installed. More specifically, three DirectShow components are required:
After installing those 3 components, you should be able to playback the M2TS files directly in Windows Media Player as well as importing and using them within Expression Encoder 2.
Also, David Sayed posted a very nice and detailed article on one of the multiple ways to get Expression Encoder 2 to support AVCHD files: http://blogs.msdn.com/david_sayed/archive/2008/05/31/avchd-recipe-for-expression-encoder-2.aspx
But if you own a Sony or Canon camcorder, you can also take advantage of the DirectShow filters that shipped with the bundled software.
Sony camcorder users: Sony Picture Motion Browser comes with a MPEG2-TS splitter and an AVC decoder. To use them in Expression Encoder 2, simply register sjvtdl.ax and SMParse.ax found in “C:\Program Files\Sony\Sony Picture Utility\Shared4” by following those steps:
Note: You will still need an AC-3 decoder to decode the audio.
M2TS files should now be playable via Windows Media Player and can be imported in Expression Encoder 2.
Canon Pixela ImageMixer 3 SE registers all the required DirectShow components required by Expression Encoder upon it's installation.
To import the MTS or M2TS files in Expression Encoder, simply select "All Fles (*.*)" in the file picker in the import dialog. Then select the wanted MTS and M2TS files. The files will be treated like any other video files.
Known Expression Encoder 2 limitations:
We are hoping to further enhance the AVCHD workflow in future versions of Expression Encoder.