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Windows 7: I need help here. Why not use WMPlayer

20 Apr 2011   #11

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Layback Bear View Post
I think I got it. Different players use different codec codes and that is why they play in different ways. When I download a different player I'm downloading a different codec codes. Do I have that correct?
Essentially I think.
VLC supports a very wide range of codecs and the containers (sort of files) that the codec data lives in. It supports VOB, ISO, MKV. VOBs will have mpeg2 coded video plus a range of audio codec support.
The version of Windows media player I have doesn't support much that VLC does.

So to answer your original question. There's nothing wrong with Windows media player if you like the user interface and it's A/V support. I don't.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Apr 2011   #12

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit

I've used WMP + Sharks Codec Pack and haven't had any issues with playback of various filetypes.
Although Most of my Libray is MP4/AAC or AC3 or MKV/AC3. So I do not really have a great variety of file types.

However, I use Nero Showtime for 99% of all playbacks.
And the main reason for that is that it supports HW accleration. I can tell a big difference in image quality when the GPU is processing the image.
Because of this, video files(SD & HD) look better to my eyes, as well as DVDs. Better than WMP, especially the HD content.

So thats my reason for choosing a 3rd party player.

It also supports most codec types, without the need for any extra codec package which is nice.
While some may not have issues with extra codecs (for video encoding etc.) others really do not wish to be bothered with it. And this can be a issue for them.
This is not always the case with 3rd party players like Showtime or VLC which makes them even more attractive option to many.

Although WMP still does a very good job IMO, there are a couple issues for it being a main choice.
Depending on the types of files you have, a codec pack such as Shark007s is really a neccesity.

For example, if you have a lot of MP4s with AAC Audio tracks, you're fine by default. But if you have MP4s with a AC3 5.1 audio track, they will have no audio and a codec pack (splitters) will be needed.
Nero will have no porblems, and Im fairly certain VLC will not either in this scenario.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Apr 2011   #13

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1

Wishmaster's an expert here on this AV stuff.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

20 Apr 2011   #14
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1

This may help. I back up every now and again to CD. I watch Hulu and a few C/D'S and have no problems. I don't play games as of yet. Basically I am trying to learn. What better place to do that. I buy movie C/D'S from Walmart. I watch TV and movies from Hulu and a few things emailed to me. I know nothing of this subject; but if I can do it better that is where I want to go. I don't use any torrents of any kind. Never have and never will. So I'm here for help to suit my need for a better player that will do that. I have ordered all the goodies for a new computer and I trying to learn as much as I can to use on my new computer. Programs that I can test on this computer before I install on my new computer. The more I learn on this site the more I know, I don't know enough. It comes down to I thank you all for your information and help!!!!!!!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Apr 2011   #15

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit

Personal preferences aside, if you have no problems or issues with WMP, it will do just fine as it is.
If all you do is stream Internet Videos, or watch orginal DVDs, then WMP or even WMC should support these by default. There should be no need for extra codecs, or a 3rd party player unless you simply prefer one.

Even for video files, so long as its supported by WMP, there will be no issue.

Codec packs, and/or 3rd party players really only become needed for things WMP does not support natively.

For example:
I often copy my personal DVD/BluRay movies to my hard drive, and compress them into a file. Usually a MP4 with AC3 or AAC audio track.
Although WMP does support the MP4 format, keep in mind this is just a container that holds the Audio and Video. Basically, just a box to put them in.

Sometimes, mixing and matching different Audio/Video formats causes a problem with WMP playback (by default).
Such as, it will play a MP4 file with H264 video stream and AAC audio stream without issue by default.
But if you put a 5.1 AC3 audio stream in there, it will have issues with audio, even though technically it supports them all.
This is where the codec packages or a 3rd party player comes in. In this particular case a different splitter is needed to properly playback the file.
I use Nero for playback of all of these, but the codec pack is required for it to play properly in WMP.

A codec Pack (such as Shark 007s) just contains different methods decode several types of file types/containers.

If you plan on creating your own video files, or compressing your DVDs to file, its best to find a format you like.
Be that the MP4 container, or MKV .. whatever. But keep with it and keep all your files consistant. I find this much simpler in the long run, rather than having 5 or 6 different files types, each requiring a different method of decoding.

You may need some extra codecs to accomplish this, depending what format you choose, but Windows7 should support most common ones by default.

In the end, if you are not really having issues with playback, it all comes down to personal preference. There may be a 3rd party player better suited to your tastes/needs.

In some cases, the Shark Codec pack + WMP may the better choice.
And by that I mean, I find that using FFDshow to decode movies actually looks slightly better (visually) in WMP than default decoders. (even though it may not really be needed for the task at hand)

I probably made this all more confusing than it needed to be ...

Not sure what else to suggest trying other than whats already been suggested, such as VLC.
Unless you want to try some paid software like Nero or PowerDVD. If your going to be reformating anyway, I suppose running one of these trials wouldnt hurt .. to satisfy curiosity.

As far as WMP, I really like Zune. It has much of the same capabilities but a much nicer/user friendly UI for managing Pictures, Music, Videos. It only supports stereo sound though.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Apr 2011   #16

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Wishmaster View Post
Unless you want to try some paid software like Nero or PowerDVD. If your going to be reformating anyway, I suppose running one of these trials wouldnt hurt .. to satisfy curiosity.
PowerDVD came with an external Blu Ray/DVD?CD reader I recently bought.
I'm not sure why you would pay money for it. I still use VLC.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Apr 2011   #17

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit

I would agree.
Im not a fan of PowerDVD myself. The free versions are usually rather neutered, but even the full version didnt impress me much.

Still, some people really love it, and to each thier own.
I suppose it is just a personal prefrence.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2011   #18

Windows 7

Indeed Layback Bear, many players include a range of codecs covering the majority of formats you may likely need. Otherwise there are a number of free Codec Packs available of which I use the K-Lite Codec Pack (x64 version though both versions can be installed where necessary).

Personally, I've never like WMP and prefer Daum PotPlayer for video/DVD and AIMP2 for music...

PotPlayer x86/x64 (aka "KMPlayer Reloaded") is an amazing free video player from the same developer who made The KMPlayer* (*sold to Pandora.TV and now a shadow of what it was). Features include; resume playback from last position , hide mouse pointer (love this feature), shutdown computer when completed, use own decoders/filters, powerful A-B repeat, automatic/sequential playback of all/similar files in a folder (great for multiple files/episodes), seamless playback (move from one file to the next seamlessly), capture a screenshot, record the file currently playing, and a serious degree of flexibility for manipulating subtitles. It's highly customizable with loads of skins and with your own background images. Like VLC it comes with internal decoders that are able to play pretty much anything, and has internal DXVA video codecs (H.264/AVC, VC-1, MPEG2) and EVR. I'd recommend this to both novices and advanced users alike. It just works, is very intuitive, and for those with greater demands there's plenty to tweak. Available for Windows XP, Vista and 7(x86 and x64).

Latest Daum PotPlayer x86 (English version)

Latest Daum PotPlayer x64 (English version)

Doom9 forum thread

AIMP2 is a fully featured freeware audio player for Windows 2000/XP/Vists/7. Packed with many features and is highly customizable. The Aimp2 installer provides the option to install the portable version, if preferred.

AIMP2 download via Softpedia *Ignore the beta download link*

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2011   #19
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1

Boy oh Boy, I didn't know it was so complicated. Thank all of you for your information. I have to do some more homework on this subject.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2011   #20

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Layback Bear View Post
Boy oh Boy, I didn't know it was so complicated. Thank all of you for your information. I have to do some more homework on this subject.
In terms of codecs, Containers and stream types?

It does seem like a lot at first.
But, once you start getting the hang of how it all works and goes together, its really not as complicated as it would appear to be.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 I need help here. Why not use WMPlayer

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