Other Video Players

QuickTime is a horrible video player, especially for HD content. Even on my Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 @ 2.13GHz, you can still see some choppiness when playing 1080p content. I mean you’d think that Apple 1080p movie trailers would be optimized to play well in QuickTime, but those definitely still have considerable lag. I’m not sure why QuickTime is so bad, but that can probably explain why iTunes lags so much too, since that’s built on top of QuickTime.

Also, don’t be fooled that the only video player that plays .mov (QuickTime movie files) is QuickTime. There are a couple other much more efficient video players that plays .mov files way better than QuickTime itself. I’m going to introduce those to you today.

VLC Media Player:
When you download VLC Media Player (a product of VideoLAN), it can play QuickTime right out of the box. You don’t have to install any codecs and most definitely don’t have to install QuickTime itself. The only reason why I even have QuickTime installed is because of iTunes. Their music player is well designed (despite being horribly laggy) + the fact I use it to sync with my iPods.

This is the best .mov player that I’ve used. Even on older machines, I was able to play 720p content with no lag whatsoever, while on the contrary, I was hitting major lag in both QuickTime and Media Player Classic.

The only downside of VLC Media Player is that it’s quite complex and isn’t that user friendly. If you’re skilled, there’s tons of options you can play with and hot keys you can enable, but for the more basic user, the UI is quite non-friendly and somewhat ugly.

However, if you have a slow machine, this is your best bet in playing HD content.

Media Player Classic + QuickTime Alternative:
Media Player Classic Media Player Classic – Home Cinema is my favorite media player by far. It’s an open source project that is based on the old Windows Media Player 6.4. When WMP7 was released, I hated their UI and it basically really sucked. WMP8, WMP9, WMP10, and now WMP11 hasn’t gotten much better. WMP6.4 was very simple, yet had enough to make it an awesome video player. Hence the Media Player Classic project was born. Throughout the years, they’ve improved making it more user friendly and giving users more advance options.

You’ll also need to install the video codec: QuickTime Alternative QT Lite. This basically provides the instructions to Media Player Classic on how to read the .mov files, and is truly a QuickTime replacement as I haven’t really hit any issues trying to play QuickTime files, even .m4a (MPEG-4 AAC), the default compression iTunes uses on music you rip. However, you won’t be able to play .m4p as those are encrypted with your iTunes key and is proprietary technology that Apple is not given any permission for.

Right now, I have .mov files associated to Media Player Classic and have no problems using the QuickTime Alternative codec to view QuickTime content.

If you have any questions on how to use alternative video player to play QuickTime content, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll try to answer your question to the best of my knowledge.

7 thoughts on “Other Video Players

  1. We already publish mp4 trailers on the blog (search for MP4 Encode). They’re generally added within 24 hours of a new trailer blog post.

    I also verified that they are indeed encoded in H.264 (I assume you want playback on your PS3):

    Audio: AAC 44100Hz stereo 128Kbps [Apple Sound Media Handler (eng)]
    Video: MPEG4 Video (H264) 1920×1036 [Apple Video Media Handler (eng)]

    I believe most trailers posted after Alex’s introduction has MP4 encodes: Two New Members to the Team. There are a few that he wasn’t able to convert to MP4.

  2. It really depends on how they implemented their flash player. If it’s a popular site, you can probably find a site which will generate a download link for you. Otherwise, you can always check your cache. In Firefox, I find the most recent large file and rename it to .flv and it plays on any video player capable of playing flash video.

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