It’s g-g-g-g-g-g-reat!


Was reading /. when i came across this post:


PowerDVD is by far the best DVD player for Windows

I disagree. The best DVD player for Windows (and Linux) is VLC [videolan.org]

It supports menus, surround sound (even DTS) and AFAIK all the other things PowerDVD does.
But on top of that it is region free and allows you to skip the commercials and copyright
warnings that PowerDVD forces you to watch 🙂

It’s also free as in beer and speech.



My dvd software trial was about to run out and I was wondering if I should renew it. I thought the playback was excellent, though I hated the user interface. I was also kind of annoyed by it as it would sometimes refuse to output digitally to my SP/DIF without rebooting. Instead it would decode the audio itself and output in stereo. Bleagh. I’m happy to say now that there’s no need anymore. This software is fantastic! It’s got a very clean, uncluttered interface. It plays DVDs perfectly (they look fantastic!!) and does what I want and doesn’t touch the audio stream, instead allowing my receiver to take care of it itself.


And, as the poster said, it’s completely free and available on like every platform. Free highly-quality software that is being actively developed and improved!!! If you want you can even get those disgusting skins that try to make DVD playback software look like an actual DVD player. So if you consider that a plus point for software like WinDVD/PowerDVD (i don’t, they just confuse me) then you’ll stil be satisfied with this. This is also a plus because I’ve been thinking about switching over to linux and using MythTV and/or this on my media center PC. Now that I know that this sofftware exists already on Linux, I’m a lot more comfortable switching.


Comments (15)

  1. Og Maciel says:

    You should also look into Xine, GXine, and Totem if you ever take the plunge into the Linux world.

  2. You could also look at either MediaPortal or myHTPC if you decide to stay with Windows. I’m using myHTPC and it does just about everything I need.

  3. Darren Oakey says:

    Hmm… Powerdvd has non-linear screen scaling, and will mix the sound so it will come beautifully out of my four speakers. (if only it would work across two monitors!) – but IMHO those two put it in a class of it’s own.

  4. Darren: I don’t want it to mix sound 🙂

    If it’s already in 5.1 form, it should leave it that way 🙂

    Why is non-linear screen scaling good? Sounds like you’ll end up with video that isn’t in the original ratio as it was meant to be presented!

  5. matthew says:

    zoom player is the best. Minimalist, custom aspect ratios, all you need

  6. Dr Pizza says:

    "Sounds like you’ll end up with video that isn’t in the original ratio as it was meant to be presented! "

    That seems to be the case with most DVDs anyway, as people insist on showing them at 16:9.

  7. One Weblog writer compares PowerDVD to his favorite Linux DVD player solution, the VLC media player. Designed to work on practically any platform, the VLC media player is a media player for most of the popular Linux flavors. He goes on to explain that it actually outshines PowerDVD in a number of areas….

  8. Darren Oakey says:

    Cyrus –

    sound: ok – it’s hard to believe, but some of us still don’t have a 5.1 system attached to our pc’s… (computer stuff is more expensive in Australia!)

    graphics: my wife has one of the cool new sony vaio – and it’s 1280×768 res is so close to move aspect ratio, it’s nice to get the movie to fill the whole space. However, obviously you don’t wanna just change the aspect ratio, because it would look stupid. That’s where CLPV comes in – it’s great – it can stretch the screen in a non-linear fashion, so the APPARENT aspect ratio isn’t greatly changed, but the whole screen is filled up – looks fantastic!

  9. Darren: Australia sucks! Come to a real continent.

    "However, obviously you don’t wanna just change the aspect ratio" then "it can stretch the screen in a non-linear fashion"

    Does not compute. Geh-ror! 😉

    I get what you’re saying though. I’ll try it out to see if I like it. But I think I’ll stick with regular scaling.

  10. Darren Oakey says:

    Cyrus: Australia’s "where it’s at!" – and in point of fact, we ARE a real continent.. whereas the US is just a country – and North America doesn’t seem unified enough to deserve the name 🙂

    However – bizarrely enough – I just may be – just filed for a working visa yesterday. Thinking of going over and spending a year or two in the US. (don’t take that as an endorsement of your disparaging comments – I WILL be back here :))

  11. Blorg says:

    The standard 16:9 aspect ratio for 720p is 1280×720. I’d just scale to that and leave the 24 pixel black bars on the top and bottom – are they really that much of an annoyance?

    Non-linear scaling can *really* mess up any panning shots as the edges of the frame are moving faster than the middle (although in this case, it would be vertical rather than horizontal panning that would be affected, and that’s not as common.)

  12. Thanks for this post, I was looking for something like this and VLC is perfect. Better than the DVD software I bought.

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