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This article aims to serve as an introduction to various types of codecs and multimedia players available.

Table of Contents


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Multimedia codec packs

In order to use certain media files in Windows you might need non-standard multimedia components called codecs.

K-Lite (Mega) Codec Pack

K-Lite (Mega) Codec Pack is a collection of VFW/ACM codecs, DirectShow filters and related tools.

Supported file formats are,

  • AVI (.avi .divx)
  • MPEG-PS (.mpeg .mpg .m1v .m2v)
  • MPEG-TS (.ts .m2ts)
  • Matroska (.mkv .mka)
  • MP4 (.mp4 .m4v)
  • Ogg (.ogm .ogg)
  • DVD/VCD/XVCD (.vob .dat)
  • Flash Video (.flv)
  • QuickTime (.mov .hdmov)
  • RealMedia (.rm .rmvb .ra .ram)
  • 3GP (.3gp .3gpp .3g2 .3gp2)
  • MP3 (.mp3)
  • MPEG-4 Audio (.m4a .aac)
  • FLAC (.flac)
  • MusePack (.mpc .mpp)
  • WavPack (.wv)
  • OptimFrog (.ofr .ofs)
  • Monkey's Audio (.ape)
  • True Audio (.tta)
  • Apple Lossless Audio Codec (.alac)
  • AC3/DTS (.ac3 .dts)
  • AMR (.amr)
  • AMV (.amv)
  • Trackers (.xm .s3m .it .mod .umx)

Can be downloaded from here

Cole2K Media

The Cole2K Media codec packs can be used with encoding applications to produce music and movie files in a wide range of compressed formats.

Supported formats are

  • AVI (.avi .divx)
  • MPEG-PS (.mpeg .mpg .m1v .m2v)
  • x264
  • AVC
  • MP4
  • DivX
  • XviD
  • AC3
  • DTS
  • FLAC
  • APE
  • AAC
  • MP3

and more

These can be downloaded from here.

Divx Codec Pack

DivX is a brand name of products created by DivX, Inc. (formerly DivXNetworks, Inc.), including the DivX Codec which has become popular due to its ability to compress lengthy video segments into small sizes while maintaining relatively high visual quality.

Supported file formats are,

  • AVI (.avi .divx)

Divx codec link

X- Vid Codec Pack

Xvid(formerly "XviD") is avideo codeclibrary following theMPEG-4standard.

Supported file formats are,
AVI (.avi)

X-Vid Codec pack download

Multimedia Players

There are literaly thousands of multimedia players available in the market. A few popular ones are mentioned below.

Windows Media Player

This is the standard player that comes with Windows. It can be used to play popular formats and upon installation of any of the codec packs mentioned in the previous section, it works with any format. It updates as part of windows installation package but can be seperately be downloaded from here

Real Player

Extremely popular and rich with features, this player plays any format as well including its own propreitry real media format (.rm). Can be downloaded from here

Apple Quicktime

Comes as the standard media player in most Macs, this can be downloaded for windows as well and plays the proprietry Quicktime format (.mov). Can be downloaded from here

Video Lan Player (VLC)

VLC media player is a highly portable multimedia player for various audio and video formats (MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, DivX, mp3, ogg, ...) as well as DVDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols.

VLC can be downloaded here

Sources and Relevant Links