What Is an AV File?

How to open, edit, & convert AV files

A file with the AV file extension is a Final Draft AV (Audio-Visual) Document file created by Final Draft AV version 1. Later editions create documents with the .XAV file extension instead. Template files use the similar XAVT file format.

Final Draft AV is a word processor program that simplifies the process of adding dialogue, scenes, character information, and other things necessary for a script. AV files are used by the program to store this information.

Some cameras may also use the AV file extension for storing video data.

AV files in Windows 10 that open with Final Draft

AV (or A/V) also stands for "audio/visual" when referring to composite and component AV cables.

How to Open an AV File

Final Draft AV, a popular scriptwriting software program for Windows and macOS, is used to open XAV and AV files that are document files. Since they're based on the XML format and are therefore plain text files, you can also open XAV and AV files with a text editor.

Final Draft AV is no longer available for download, and newer Final Draft products from the Final Draft website use FDX files as Document files. However, Final Draft AV version 2 is available for download from Softpedia and it does support opening AV files.

We don't know of any software that supports video files that use the .AV file extension. However, given that AV isn't a popular file extension for videos, it's possible that you can just rename the file to something more common like, MP4 or AVI and then open it with VLC. This will only work if the AV file is technically an MP4, AVI, etc., but is using the AV file extension so that it's unique to the program or device that creates the video.

If you find that an application on your PC does try to open the AV file but it's the wrong application or you'd rather have another installed program open AV files, you can make that change in Windows.

How to Convert an AV File

Final Draft AV can convert the AV file to PDF, RTF, TXT, FCV, XAV, and XAVT through the File > Save As menu.

You might not even need to use a file conversion tool to save the AV file as MP4 or any other video format. However, even if renaming the AV file to .MP4 doesn't actually let you play the video, you might still be able to import the .MP4 file in a free video converter and convert it to some other file format.

Still Can't Open the File?

If your file still won't open even after trying the suggestions above, then you're probably not dealing with a Final Draft file or a video. You might be misreading the file extension, which is remarkably easy to do, especially with two-letter extensions.

For example, AVI, AVHD (Hyper-V SnapShot), AVS (AVS Preset, Avid Project Preferences, Adobe Photoshop Variations), and AVE look similar to AV but that doesn't necessarily mean the formats have anything to do with each other. You might get an error if you open one of those files with an AV file opener, and vice versa.

MAV is another to watch out for. This is an Access View file that could easily be confused for an AV file. You need Microsoft Access to open it.

  • How do I view an AV file on Windows Media Player?

    Windows Media Player doesn't support files with the AV extension. Change the file into a compatible format like MP4 or AVI by changing the file extension, or use an online converter tool.

  • What is the difference between an AV and AVI file?

    AVI, or Audio Video Interleave, is a file format created by Microsoft for storing video and audio data. Although AV serves a similar purpose, the formats are compatible with different programs. AVI files can be encoded with different video and audio codecs, which must be installed to open the file.

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