Useful Tips

The 8 Best Linux Video Players


Author: Nagibin Vladimir. Date of article: 08/27/2010

Some users have problems with playing .wmv files in Ubuntu. Today we’ll talk about what needs to be done to successfully play wmv on Ubuntu Linux.

In order to play wmv files in ubuntuFirstly, you need to make sure that such media players as MPlayer or VLC are installed in the system (they can be installed from repositories). Secondly, it is necessary install codecs for playing wmv in Ubuntu.

    Open the Terminal and execute the following command in it: $ wget -c

With this command we will download the codecs needed to play wmv files.

Install the resulting file by running the following command on the command line:

$ sudo dpkg -i w32codecs_20100303-0.0medibuntu1_i386.deb

The system will ask you to enter the root superuser password. Type it and press Enter.

After a successful installation, you can easily play wmv files in Ubuntu by opening them using MPlayer or VLC players.

1) VLC Media Player

VLC Media Player is undoubtedly one of the best media players for Linux to date. Released in 2001 as part of the VideoLAN project, the media player has come a long way and supports most of the types of media files currently available on Linux.

Regardless of whether you play video or listen to music, the performance of the media player is top notch. The VLC media player also comes with various features, including support for downloading subtitles for videos, pop-up videos, video playlists, and more. You can even play media files from your DVD or USB drive.

In addition, the VLC media player also supports playback of high-definition video formats, including HEVC, HVC and MPEG versions 1.2 and 4. Separate add-ons are provided for browsers such as Firefox, Chrome and Safari.

How to install VLC on Debian / Linux Mint / Ubuntu Linux

There are two ways to install the latest and stable version of the VLC player, and the first one is through the apt-get install command:

The second way to install the VLC player as a snap package:

  • Regular updates
  • Active development
  • No need for additional codecs
  • Support for almost any codec and media file
  • Blueray playback support

  • No personalization
  • There is no way to pause and resume the video by clicking on the video window
  • Not enough extra libraries
  • Missing advanced music player features

2) SMPlayer

SM Player is another high-end Linux video player and one of the best open source media players available. SM Player supports all types of video and audio formats and, being a cross-platform media player, also provides a separate version for a Windows PC.

Compared to other video players on the market, SM player has an intuitive and interactive user interface. It supports multiple languages, and because it uses the MPV engine, it provides best-in-class performance. Equipped with a built-in codec, so you can play YouTube videos directly from the video player.

It remembers your settings and even resumes the video from the place where you left it at the last playback. Provides support for Chrome Cast, as well as various video filters. The user interface is sleek, and the controls are placed in the right place without causing interference during viewing. Many personalization features are also available.

How to install SMPlayer on Debian / Linux Mint / Ubuntu Linux

  • Subtitle download support
  • Compatible with all major audio and video formats
  • User friendly interface
  • Uses the MPV engine
  • Remembers the playback position
  • Great playback quality

  • Comes with OpenCandy
  • No icon library for supported file formats

3) MPV Player

When it comes to choosing the best video player for Linux, it's impossible not to mention the MPV player, which provides support for all media files. The video player is completely built on the basis of MPlayer and MPlayer 2, and has all their functions. It also comes with optional codecs that can even play back high definition video formats. MPV video player provides support for video scaling and media encoding.

How to install MPV Player on Debian / Linux Mint / Ubuntu Linux

Benefits of MPV Player:

  • No need to download additional codecs
  • Support for integration with streaming devices
  • Live Feature

Disadvantages of MPV Player:

  • Minimalistic user interface
  • No context menu

4) Kodi Media Player

Kodi is another cross-platform video player that allows you to simultaneously play video and audio files. Kodi comes with many useful features that cannot be found in other video players: screensavers, plugins for streaming video and audio content, support for themes and visualization options. With Kodi, you can also play high-definition video formats such as MIDI, HVC, HVEC, MPEG 1,2 and 3, as well as MP3 formats.

How to install Kodi Video Player on Debian / Linux Mint / Ubuntu Linux

Next on our list is MPlayer, which is available for all operating systems, including Windows, Linux, and MacOS. Released under the GNU public license, the video player is fully developed in C. The video player offers you many powerful features such as Framebuffer, DirectX, etc. Initially, it comes only with a command line interface and supports various media file formats.

6) GNOME Videos

Formerly known as Totem, the Gnome Videos player can be found as the default media player in GNOME Linux environments. Built on the sturdy and powerful Gstreamer platform, the video player provides support for basic audio and video formats. The player also comes with many features, including support for downloading subtitles, the ability to adjust the brightness, saturation and contrast in the video, as well as the ability to capture still images from the video.

7) Banshee Media Player

Banshee is another popular video player among Linux users that supports all major multimedia formats. IPod Manager, support for podcasting and even multimedia keys. The player has all the features that are usually sought in a media player. The quick search feature allows you to find any media file on your system in seconds.