PowerPoint Video Backgrounds – How to Add Looping Video Backgrounds to PowerPoint

There has been a lot of discussion about how to add moving video and video backgrounds for use in a PowerPoint presentation. Many PowerPoint users want to be able to incorporate a video background into their presentation and add text and / or graphics over the video background. The problem is that PowerPoint does not come out of the box with a way to do this. So users must learn how to do this on their own using some video encoding techniques as well as using a third-party plugin that allows the integration of video backgrounds into PowerPoint. The following are four easy steps for adding video backgrounds to PowerPoint.

1. Convert your video background video clip (s) to a format supported by PowerPoint: AVI, MPEG and WMV are all supported by PowerPoint. Typically if you purchased a video background from one of the leading video background websites, the file (s) will be delivered in QuickTime format. You'll need to convert the QuickTime file (or whatever format you purchased and / or downloaded) to one that works within PowerPoint. We recommend Windows Media files (WMV) because it is made and supported by Microsoft, who also makes PowerPoint.

2. Use Microsoft Windows Media Encoder or Flip4mac WMV Studio to convert your QuickTime file (s) to WMV

You will need to use video encoding software to convert your original video background file (ie, QuickTime) to a format that is supported by PowerPoint (ie, WMV). Check out Windows Media® Encoder from Microsoft® and WMV Studio from flip4mac. Both these tools will help you convert files to the WMV format.

3. Create your new WMV video background clip (s) using these specifications:

Using your video encoding software of choice, choose the encoding settings based on the following specifications (generally the following specs will offer the most reliable and smooth playback within PowerPoint):

-640 x 480 resolution, 4: 3 (Currently this offers the most stable playback. If using 16: 9 source material you'll need to convert the 16: 9 video to 4: 3 letterbox when converting to 640×480).

-Medium to High Video Quality

-Test different settings to get the quality and performance you're looking for. The settings you choose will depend on the speed of your computer.

4. Use a video background player plugin to import and play your WMV video background clips within PowerPoint.

There are two leading options to choose from in the marketplace for PowerPoint® video background plugins. Each allows users to import WMV video (and other formats) into PowerPoint® and add text over the video. Check out the Video Backgrounds Player from 123PPT and PowerPlugs: Video Backgrounds Player Plugin from Crystalgraphics. Both of these plugins will allow you to add video as a background and layer text and / or graphics on top.