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Best Media Player for PC?

Professor SnugglesworthProfessor Snugglesworth Registered User regular
I used to use SMPlayer for watching all kinds of movies, but lately the damn thing has been freezing or just plain not playing certain file types.

So I just wanted some recommendations on what the best media players were. I would stick to WMP if it would let me fast forward and rewind with the arrow keys like SM does.

Professor Snugglesworth on

Posts

  • DehumanizedDehumanized Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    VLC is a pretty good option in most cases

    Dehumanized on
  • Fizban140Fizban140 Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited June 2010
    VLC is amazing, and it usually the most recommended and highest rated. It players almost every format without having to download codecs, its small, fast and has a nice interface...no bullshit just a media player.

    Fizban140 on
  • IdolisideIdoliside Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    VLC is alright but I've found it not giving the best decoding with Mp4, M4V files. Im using CCCP and Media Player Classic for most of my videos.

    Idoliside on
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  • Mr_GrinchMr_Grinch Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    Idoliside wrote: »
    VLC is alright but I've found it not giving the best decoding with Mp4, M4V files. Im using CCCP and Media Player Classic for most of my videos.

    I'd agree completely, MPC is fantastic and considerably better than VLC. With VLC you rely on their internal codecs (by and large) which are usually pretty great but MPC is the best traditional media player and one of the most flexible.

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  • RandomEngyRandomEngy Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    Zoom Player lets you fast forward and rewind with arrow keys. Interface->Keyboard, then use left/right as Timeline Skip (5s) and Up/Down as Timeline Jump (20s). It also lets you do cool stuff like make middle click toggle fullscreen.

    VLC is nice but it's not as customizable for controls, it's a little less responsive when pausing/playing/seeking, has a crappy full screen control interface.

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  • TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu PIGEON Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    Media Player Classic blows VLC out of the water as far as I'm concerned.

    TychoCelchuuu on
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    VLC is good, but CCCP will basically make everything playable in WMP12 (with the exception of bizarro stuff from the buygone era like Realmedia or Quicktime, which is playable in MPC).

    VLC does have a crappy interface, though. Since you only have to set up CCCP once, WMP12 is more pleasant to use, as is MPC. WMP12 will also handle streaming. I'm not sure if MPC has the feature you're looking for either though....

    Synthesis on
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  • ArangArang Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    If you hold down shift, Ctrl or Alt in VLC, it does skip with the arrow keys, in various increments. On my computer it tends to work less well with HD files, but it does work.

    Arang on
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  • SeeksSeeks Registered User regular
    edited June 2010
    Another vote for VLC.

    Although honestly, in Windows, I never had a huge problem with just the default WMP (assuimg the proper codecs are installed).

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  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
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  • surrealitychecksurrealitycheck lonely, but not unloved dreaming of faulty keys and latchesRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    What McDermott said. That program tripled the size of my biceps overnight.

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  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Note that it may take a little time to get that player set up just right. But once I had it hardware accelerating my h.264 playback, and kicking the audio out the SPDIF, I was a happy camper. Much better than VLC, IMO, YMMV.

    mcdermott on
  • EchoEcho Moderator mod
    edited July 2010
    VLC blows Media Player Classic out of the water as far as I'm concerned.

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  • freakish lightfreakish light Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    I've used VLC for a long time, and I like it, but when I scale stuff to fullscreen on my desktop (1600x900 res), the edges come out jagged. Even 720p video files, which is irritating to no end.

    I ended up using SMPlayer for a while, which fixed the jaggy edges problem, but every once in a while the video would freeze while the audio kept going, for about five seconds, and then the video would go 5x speed to catch up with the sound. It's really weird and pretty annoying.

    I don't like Windows Media Player because a) I don't really want to start installing codec packs and b) Ctrl-P to pause? Seriously? Every other media player uses the frigging SPACEBAR. It's so much easier to hit when you have to pause and get up and go do something.

    Maybe I'll try MPC: Home Cinema, see if that works.

    freakish light on
  • IdolisideIdoliside Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    I've used VLC for a long time, and I like it, but when I scale stuff to fullscreen on my desktop (1600x900 res), the edges come out jagged. Even 720p video files, which is irritating to no end.

    I ended up using SMPlayer for a while, which fixed the jaggy edges problem, but every once in a while the video would freeze while the audio kept going, for about five seconds, and then the video would go 5x speed to catch up with the sound. It's really weird and pretty annoying.

    I don't like Windows Media Player because a) I don't really want to start installing codec packs and b) Ctrl-P to pause? Seriously? Every other media player uses the frigging SPACEBAR. It's so much easier to hit when you have to pause and get up and go do something.

    Maybe I'll try MPC: Home Cinema, see if that works.

    It uses the spacebar, so plus points there.

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  • LoneIgadzraLoneIgadzra Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    CCCP + MPC all the way. (Though I was a ZoomPlayer fan back when it was included.) VLC is way clunky.
    I don't like Windows Media Player because a) I don't really want to start installing codec packs and b) Ctrl-P to pause? Seriously? Every other media player uses the frigging SPACEBAR. It's so much easier to hit when you have to pause and get up and go do something.

    People who create media players without pause and play assigned to spacebar make me want to do violence.

    LoneIgadzra on
  • RandomEngyRandomEngy Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Zoom Player is pretty much the best. And it comes with an install center that makes sure the right tools + ffdshow are installed. Optionally plug in an MPC component for H.264 hardware accelerated playback.

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  • Dark ShroudDark Shroud Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    +1 CCCP + MPC

    You also didn't say what OS you're using. Because Win7 has codecs installed now as well as WMP 12.

    Dark Shroud on
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    What McDermott said. That program tripled the size of my biceps overnight.

    You've convinced me. It'll probably be useful for that one odd time where I need to watch a Quicktime or Realmedia file, and don't have the time to stick a pen directly into my eye.

    Synthesis on
    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • Professor SnugglesworthProfessor Snugglesworth Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Synthesis wrote: »
    What McDermott said. That program tripled the size of my biceps overnight.

    You've convinced me. It'll probably be useful for that one odd time where I need to watch a Quicktime or Realmedia file, and don't have the time to stick a pen directly into my eye.

    I too have been convinced. MPC:HC seems like a simple, stable program that so far plays all formats without a hitch.

    For optimization's sake, what settings do I need to tweak for maximum prettiness? Also, what audio settings do I need to apply for 5.1 sound through analog cables (as my setup demands)?

    And finally, just out of curiosity, is there any way to simulate the motion plus effect that many modern high def TVs use (doubling the framerate)?

    Professor Snugglesworth on
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Synthesis wrote: »
    What McDermott said. That program tripled the size of my biceps overnight.

    You've convinced me. It'll probably be useful for that one odd time where I need to watch a Quicktime or Realmedia file, and don't have the time to stick a pen directly into my eye.

    I too have been convinced. MPC:HC seems like a simple, stable program that so far plays all formats without a hitch.

    For optimization's sake, what settings do I need to tweak for maximum prettiness? Also, what audio settings do I need to apply for 5.1 sound through analog cables (as my setup demands)?

    And finally, just out of curiosity, is there any way to simulate the motion plus effect that many modern high def TVs use (doubling the framerate)?

    No idea on motion plus, but probably not.


    To mix 5.1 audio to analog outputs, you'll want:

    View->Options->Internal Filters (on the left)->AC3 (which will be on the right)

    Double click AC3. This will bring up a dialog that actually edits settings for AC3, DTS, and AAC surround. For AC3 and DTS, there's a dropdown to select how it mixes...Stereo, Dolby Stereo, or various multi-analog (such as 3 Front+2 Rear) configurations. Choose the appropriate one.

    Make sure SPDIF is unchecked, that just outputs the AC3/DTS stream directly over your SPDIF output.


    I don't play with the options too much, but I use EVR Custom Pres. or VMR9 for my output method, and when watching any SD content (to include low-res conversions and VIDEO_TS folders) I activate the 16-255->0-255 filter, which allows for lower black levels or some shit.


    Hardware acceleration gets activated under Internal Filters again, just choose the codec (like x264) then make sure DXVA is checked in the dialog box. I think it's on by default. I also think that in Vista/7 you're required to use EVR video output for DXVA to work. Not sure.

    mcdermott on
  • ZellZell Registered User
    edited July 2010
    MPC Homecinema, easily. VLC refused to let me edit what the mouse buttons do (MPC's configuration options for controls are WAY ahead of VLC's) and last I checked it didn't have DXVA. Also, while I don't have any use for it at the moment, support for external decoders is great.

    Since ability to play most files is included by default I really don't see the need to clutter the installation with CCCP or any codec pack though.

    Zell on
  • SomethingorotherSomethingorother Registered User
    edited July 2010
    +1 for CCCP+MPC here.

    Somethingorother on
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    +1 for CCCP+MPC here.

    I'm pretty sure if you grab MPC:HC, you don't need CCCP. Correct me if I'm wrong, though.

    mcdermott on
  • Dark ShroudDark Shroud Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    mcdermott wrote: »
    +1 for CCCP+MPC here.

    I'm pretty sure if you grab MPC:HC, you don't need CCCP. Correct me if I'm wrong, though.

    Only if you're on Win7.

    Dark Shroud on
  • ZellZell Registered User
    edited July 2010
    mcdermott wrote: »
    +1 for CCCP+MPC here.

    I'm pretty sure if you grab MPC:HC, you don't need CCCP. Correct me if I'm wrong, though.

    Only if you're on Win7.
    False, running Vista and have no codecs whatsoever installed and MPC:HC still plays just about anything.

    Zell on
  • DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    I find VLC's interface annoying. It seems to get worse with every major software update. And it has some weird scaling oddities.

    That said, it is pretty snazzy. The complaints I listed are relatively minor. And the ability to boost volume up to 400% is very helpful on my netbook.

    I actually really like Windows Media Player 12. I don't really use the media guide features, but the player itself has come a long way.

    So basically...I mostly use WMP 12 on my desktop (Windows 7) and VLC on my netbook (Windows XP).

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  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    MPC HC drags VLC to the back of the building and gives it a severe beating.

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  • IconoclysmIconoclysm Registered User
    edited July 2010

    And finally, just out of curiosity, is there any way to simulate the motion plus effect that many modern high def TVs use (doubling the framerate)?

    This page walks you through doing this in MPC.
    I've not gotten it working myself, but I've not tried it with a clean install of the various apps involved so ymmv.
    http://www.tested.com/news/how-to-enable-motion-interpolation-on-your-movie-files/329/

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  • SkeithSkeith Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    +1 for MPC. I use SMPlayer for mp4 files though, for some reason they don't like to play with MPC.

    Skeith on
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  • Professor SnugglesworthProfessor Snugglesworth Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Iconoclysm wrote: »

    And finally, just out of curiosity, is there any way to simulate the motion plus effect that many modern high def TVs use (doubling the framerate)?

    This page walks you through doing this in MPC.
    I've not gotten it working myself, but I've not tried it with a clean install of the various apps involved so ymmv.
    http://www.tested.com/news/how-to-enable-motion-interpolation-on-your-movie-files/329/

    Holy crap....it works! I followed the settings, and I'm totally getting the effects. It's relatively smooth too. :^:

    There's just two problems however:

    1. This seems to only work with the vanilla MPC that's included with FFDShow. In the options under the HC version, I'm unable to check Haali Renderer, like it's not available.

    2. I'm getting audio issue with certain movies (formats?) where I can hear the music and sound effects, but all voices and speech are gone. Basically it's like half the audio is missing. I think it has to do with multi-channel audio, as standard 2 channel stuff like Anime appears unaffected.

    I hope someone can help me out soon. I'm dying to try this thing out on my Samsung TV.

    Pretty awesome that I can get a current LCD feature without upgrading. 8-)

    Professor Snugglesworth on
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Iconoclysm wrote: »

    And finally, just out of curiosity, is there any way to simulate the motion plus effect that many modern high def TVs use (doubling the framerate)?

    This page walks you through doing this in MPC.
    I've not gotten it working myself, but I've not tried it with a clean install of the various apps involved so ymmv.
    http://www.tested.com/news/how-to-enable-motion-interpolation-on-your-movie-files/329/

    Holy crap....it works! I followed the settings, and I'm totally getting the effects. It's relatively smooth too. :^:

    There's just two problems however:

    1. This seems to only work with the vanilla MPC that's included with FFDShow. In the options under the HC version, I'm unable to check Haali Renderer, like it's not available.

    2. I'm getting audio issue with certain movies (formats?) where I can hear the music and sound effects, but all voices and speech are gone. Basically it's like half the audio is missing. I think it has to do with multi-channel audio, as standard 2 channel stuff like Anime appears unaffected.

    I hope someone can help me out soon. I'm dying to try this thing out on my Samsung TV.

    Pretty awesome that I can get a current LCD feature without upgrading. 8-)

    You're just losing your center channel. Probably your rears, too. I don't know about vanilla MPC, but in MPC-HC that would be under Internal Filters->AC3, and you'd check to see what you have selected for downmix options...just change it to Stereo, if it's on something like 3 Front/2 Rear.

    Just to verify, though, is it doing this specifically with .mkv's that have AC3 audio? Or any container that's using AC3 audio?

    mcdermott on
  • Professor SnugglesworthProfessor Snugglesworth Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Possibly the former, but I don't know how to check.

    Professor Snugglesworth on
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