"Media player similar to WMP 6.4, but better."
Media Player Classic is an improved edition of the classic Windows Media Player 6.4 with the ability to play QuickTime and Real Player files. Unlike KMPlayer it doesn’t have the facility to identify codecs with built in logic but with proper codecs installed in the system it will be perfect for use. It has sound filters and playlist options.
A good thing about installing Media Player Classic is that it does not need to be installed. You can just copy the 2.1 MB setup file to any folder you wish and run it from there, or create a shortcut to it on your Desktop or Launch bar. It’s a portable application. However if you want to push the functionalities of Media Player Classic, you will have to install a codec pack for it to run every format available. Even while playing the QuickTime and Real Player files, these applications need to be installed in the system.
It works on all versions of Windows, 98, 2000, XP, Vista, Win 7. The different thing about this latest version is the added support for Ogg Theora and AC3.
Some codec packs such as K-Lite Mega Codec Pack Full might offer the option to install Media Player Classic, skip that because then you’ll be having two versions of the player in your system.
The interface of Media Player Classic is very much like the conventional Windows Media Player's older versions. So there are no problems in understanding the basic functionalities. If you have been using Windows Media Player for long, then it will not be difficult to handle. New users possibly will have a tough time getting into the essential features. Many of the options are accessible through the top menu or by right-clicking in the main window.
I will not call the Media Player Classic's interface very modern or stylish because as the name says it’s a very retro, old school style player with no catchy gimmicks to it.
The best things about Media Player Classic are actually it's lightweight design and the small portable setup file of only 2.1 MB. Other advantages include:
- The keyboard keys can control many functions like the left right key makes the video go forward and backwards on a single frame, ctrl + right/left can skip a frame
- Supports DVD playing with subtitles
- Has an MPEG splitter for supporting subtitles
- Can be integrated with any codec requiring it being installed in the system for a DirectShow feature
- Fast decoding once the decoders have been installed
- By default, it does not support many formats because it has no built in codecs
- Fast forward is limited
- No help document available but it can be downloaded
- Fewer shortcut keys or Hot keys than other players
- Doesn’t provide sound mixing options
- No visualizations for music files
- Few controls for video
There are no alternatives to Media Player Classic in terms of simplicity. However, the player does not provide many options to work around videos and audios, so if you are looking for an upgrade in this field, you can try VLC Media Player or RealPlayer. VLC has built in codecs to play different formats but it’s more complicated to configure than Media Player Classic. RealPlayer is easy to install and can run many audio formats with tearing options, but there are too many advertisements to handle. And better of all is QuickTime for simple usage, with great built in codec support.
Many people call it the Real alternative or the QuickTime alternative, but the truth is that Windows Media Player Classic has been the very first player that everyone dealt with and this revamped version is not much of a surprise to anyone. The Media Player Classic 188.8.131.52 is the latest version of MPC, with a few advanced features and easy installation but not much versatility. It’s not the ideal player if you want advanced options for your audio and video files, but a perfect player for regular media playback, which does its job right every time, without much fuss.
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