We’ve come a long way since animated GIFs and video-game-style MIDI files were considered cutting edge computer-provided audio visual entertainment. I mean, these days there are so many different types of file formats out there it’s a wonder we actually still manage to watch stuff on our computers at all.
Well not to worry if your Windows Media Player keeps telling you it can’t read the file, as you just need to learn to get the best out of your PC with one of the three best free players out there. There are so many media players out there to choose from, but as always we cut out the work for you and brought you the best:
Media Player Classic: Media Player Classic, my personal favorite. It started out as a project to preserve the simplicity and lightweight playback of the old Windows Media Player, while keeping codecs and features current for the present generation of video. The outcome is an extremely lightweight, free, portable, and self-contained video player that has built-in codecs for a wide variety of media playback. The upside of such a design is you can use it on a machine that doesn’t have the proper codecs installed for the video you want to watch. The downside is in some instances—although rare—it can conflict with an updated codec you have installed on your machine.
VLC Media player: VLC is a media player; the road-cone beauty (My words) with far-reaching appeal is available for over ten operating systems including systems as obscure as BeOS. Built with open-source code and fueled by free decoding and encoding libraries, it has a history of innovation and performance; it was, for example, the first player that could play back encrypted DVDs on Linux. VLC allows you to play incomplete or damaged videos, so you can decide if it is worth finishing a download or repairing a video file. VLC can also play a variety of formats not commonly supported by media players, such as a raw DVD ISO file or AVCHD—a format currently used by many HD camcorders. VLC is available as a portable application and for me its best use is in it extra high volume setting, which is great for quiet lap tops (just press ctrl+up).
KM Player: If you like all your media player’s settings at your fingertips, KMPlayer has a lot to offer. The right click context menu is absolutely enormous and gives you nearly instant access to all manner of settings, including screen ratio, playback speed, video bookmarking, filters, and other effects. You can set KMPlayer to change its skin based on what media type you’re playing or if you’re running it on a media center you can use an overlay skin to provide easy remote-based navigation. KMPlayer supports an extensive number of formats including DVD playback and is easily customized to your specific needs.
Now all you have to do is go online and download, they are free and relatively small in size so enjoy, enjoy, enjoy.