I'm new, and I've been looking around here, and have been reading the guides. One thing I noticed is that the .MKV to .AVI and .MPEG guides seem to be pretty complicated and require 5+ programs to do so.
I've made a guide that seems to be easier to convert, and requires less tools.
Tell me what you think, if it's helped anyone, and if you know if there is anything that could be improved.
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What if the mkv contains native AVC/MPEG-4 and or is VFR?
You complain about too many apps, but if all you want is to take an mkv with a VfW video stream and remux to avi, converting one of the audio streams to mp3 you could just use mencoder and only mencoder. You could even hard encode subs or convert directly to mpg.
There are also often reasons for using extra apps. Like instead of using VDubMod for the audio, you could convert the ogg vorbis to mp3 using say BeSweet and then mux. That way you can use VBR, resample, normalise, etc.