Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Codec?

“Codec” is a portmanteau of “coder-decoder” or “compression-decompression”, but more importantly, a codec is a portion of software that enables programs to properly display a compressed file. When dealing with media players, it is the software built into the media player itself (or downloaded and added on when possible) that allows the media player to play an audio or video file that has been compressed at a higher quality level.

What can I play with a new media player?

Just about any digital video or audio file! It’s thanks to the codecs we just described; since many third party media players open as many file formats as possible, it is increasingly rare that a file format won’t be supported. This means most media players can play even much more obscure file formats than proprietary players do. Please visit our Media Player Comparison Page to see what file formats are supported by each media player we offer.

Will my media player play DVDs?

Generally speaking, yes. Most of the media players that we offer all have regular playback capabilities on both DVDs and audio CDs. There are a few, however, that do not support optical drive playback. Of those players, you can play audio that has been ripped from an audio CD into digital formats, though usually DVD functionality is not included. These players often forego supporting disc playback to allow for faster processing of digital files.

Can I view streaming videos with my media player?

Many new media players allow for seamless integration for streaming media. Proprietary media players often search either media files on your hard drive or from webstores (like Google Play or the iTunes store) for media that you can play. However, the built-in media finder feature in most third party media players not only allows you to search your computer for existing audio and video files, but will also search the internet for torrents, streaming media, and other free digital media.

Can I convert files with a media player?

Generally speaking, yes! A lot of the latest media players understand that people want audio and video in the highest quality possible that is also compatible with a larger number of devices. Built-in converters allow users to make files that can be played on phones, tablets, on your computer, or even compress them for ease of transferring via email or upload.