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VLC 3.0 release (videolan.org)
827 points by jbk on Feb 9, 2018 | hide | past | favorite | 294 comments

VLC is one of those programs that has really proved itself a stalwart of the FLOSS community. I feel like VLC is in a rare category of software that is great because:

1. It's existed for long enough that we know it won't just go away and break our hearts. (I used VLC to play videos on BeOS back in college in the late 90s.)

2. No matter how many iterations it goes through, it's still intelligible to would-be time travelers from the past. I.e. didn't get caught up in the "must change the UX around for change's sake" epidemic that still seems rampant.

3. It's always had acceptable performance, perhaps owing to being born in a time of no goddamned Electron apps.

4. It's dependable across platforms, even platforms that I'm unfamiliar with or don't like. Need to play a video on Windows? I don't even know what crapware to download, because I download VLC, because I know VLC runs on Windows and will greet me as a familiar friend in this strange and foreign land.

My hat is off to you, VLC!

And the guy turned down some millions of Euros to keep it Free.[0]

[0]: https://np.reddit.com/r/france/comments/736ghk/ama_je_suis_l...

Dr Scott Atran on economic incentives and sacred values:

> Much more is know about economic decision making than moral decision making. Very little is known about sacred values. [In political negotiations] the standard view is to leave the hard questions of recognition and who you are for last, and you try to build things slowly through economic small steps, and person-to-person discussions. [I find that] when sacred values are in conflict, that is a formula for another hundred years of war.

> Now what do I mean by sacred values? Well, they are values that are very strongly tied to the emotions, to your sense of who you are within your community, and you are usually not even aware of them. It is a little bit like food: people usually are not aware of food until they are starving, [but then it becomes the one value people have]

> The same [is true for] sacred values: sacred values are the frame within which all social and economic transactions are possible, and again you usually are not even aware of them, until another society or group challenges them. Then they become dominant.

> In our [secular Western] society we do not have standard principles of sacred values any more, except for our children and perhaps our nation, everything is supposedly fungible. Of course, if I asked you if you would accept a million dollars to sell off your child, you would say I am crazy. If I insisted on it you would think I am a sociopath. But that is exactly the way people feel when one offers them a material incentive to exchange their sacred values.


#4 really is amazing. vlc is probably the ONLY application that I took with me when switching from Windows to Mac/Linux 10+ years ago. It's as essential to my multimedia computing as vim is to my text editing.

If you are still on Mac, you should check out IINA(https://github.com/lhc70000/iina). I switched to it when I needed to watch 4k videos on my Macbook and it out-performs VLC. I think VLC's cross-platform compatibility hurts it here as IINA uses some Mac specific APIs.

Read the VLC 3.0 release notes. Performance is no longer a problem on 4k & 8k videos.

True. Should have read the full changelog. Thank you for pointing it out. I'll give it a try.

The change is that VLC now supports H.265 hardware decoding on mac.

Great that VLC iterates so quickly!

My gripe with VLC on Mac is that the fullscreen mode is not a real Mac full-screen. It just maximizes. There is no way to put it besides another chrome tab for example (quicktime and any other program lets you do this)

VLC > Preferences > 'Use native fullscreen mode'

I believe this was originally done because Lion would black out all other monitors when fullscreening something.

> VLC now supports H.265 hardware decoding on mac.

Doesn't seem to work on last year ones with only dedicated GPU-hardware acceleration.

Contact me, with logs, please. :)

Agreed. IINA is really good. Best Mac player I have seen so far.

Wow, thanks for the tip. I've been using mpv for years but IINA is great!

IINA is a gui on top of mpv, which is also cross platform.

I agree with everything although with #2, VLC really could use some UI/UX improvements on both desktop and iOS. Hard to complain though when it's been stable and efficient for all these years - I'd rather have a few odd/annoying UI issues than a bloated piece of garbage!

What UI/UX improvements would you like to see?

I agree with the grandparent post - it's simple, consistent and dependable :). Also, customizable!

Here's a few that I remember most: 1.) Desktop - Volume "slider" (since it's really not on Windows) is difficult to adjust, especially to get back to 100% exactly or any other precise volume level (25%, 50%, etc.)

2.) Desktop - mouse slider affecting volume results in a lot of accidental volume changes, especially when using a Trackpad.

3.) iOS - When going back from playback to a list of media on your local server, the list refreshes to the top every time. Very annoying.

4.) iOS - connecting to a Local Server is awkward for pre-saved ones. You have to touch the saved setting and then it just pre-fills the login info without notice instead of connecting immediately. First few times it felt like it was doing nothing, until I realized what it actually did.

5.) iOS - Adjusting brightness/volume during playback by swiping is not precise and too sensitive. Very difficult to get the setting to desired level if it's not extreme and lifting your finger usually results in another change afterward.

1) Volume can be set by using Ctrl+Up / Ctrl+Down and moves in 5% increments.

* i can't edit my original comment

That was true on previous versions. In 3.0, you can just use Up/Down on the keyboard.

Mousewheel/scroll too!

You can set keyboard shortcuts for volume adjustment. that's precise and easy once setup.

1) use the keys, but I'll have a look to give a better way

2) disable this in preferences.

It's missing keyboard shortcuts for some operations (slowdown and speedup) and missing some common shortcuts that other video apps have mostly converged on (unmodified left/right for short hops, up/down for volume).

Many of the auxiliary menus are inconsistently partitioned. For example, if you're looking for a color setting in Tools->Effects & Filters, it's unclear whether it'll be under Color or Essentials.

These are minor things, but that's what good UX is all about. Tragically, new style guides and frameworks often pitch themselves by explaining solid UX principles then claiming the way to achieve these is a total rewrite using their system.

The square brackets are shortcuts for slowing down and speeding up.

Well that's good to know.

I'll change that problem to "the playback speed menu items don't show their shortcuts" then.

You can always submit a small patch for the shortcut captioning. I would + it.

> unmodified left/right for short hops, up/down for volume

Fixed in 3.0

I remember I had trouble opening up the video window vs the playlist and not understanding how to switch between the two.

That being said, VLC has still been amazing for all my video needs

Vlc doesn’t have a simple stream to Apple TV mode

>No matter how many iterations it goes through, it's still intelligible to would-be time travelers from the past. I.e. didn't get caught up in the "must change the UX around for change's sake" epidemic that still seems rampant.

Well amen to that. If it works, why change it?

I remember the nightmare of downloading random codec packages trying to get video to work in the late 90s, early 2000s before I found VLC.

More than ever it's a shining example of high quality software driven by a desire to simply make things work.

It stands in stark contrast at a time when the tech industry seems hyper focused on business models that lock users into crippled platforms and extremely invasive tracking.

Thanks for your support!

> being born in a time of no goddamned Electron apps.

You and I would be great friends.

While I definitely agree with you that VLC is a gem I'd like to add that on Windows there's a - AFAIK - more feature-rich open source project called MPC-HC.

My main reason for using it over VLC is that it's comically easy to download (just press "D") and sync subtitles (pause in the beginning of a sentence -> CTRL+6 -> select sentence -> F5). Last time I checked this was a lot harder in VLC. It required a trial-and-error method to try and get the correct delay.

I love MPC-HC and still use it on a Win 7 box plugged into my TV but sadly it is no longer actively developed[1]. Because I strictly use it for local videos and don't run anything remote through it I don't worry too much about the lack of updates. But I imagine a day will come when it will no longer work on some new version of Windows.

[1] https://mpc-hc.org/2017/07/16/1.7.13-released-and-farewell/

One click for download will be done in next major release.

As for the sync subtitles, it's already possible in VLC.

I also first used VLC on BeOS!

> I used VLC to play videos on BeOS back in college in the late 90s

VLC was first released in 2001, as per Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VLC_media_player

Wow, was it really that late? perhaps it was. Maybe my memory is shot. I definitely remember using VLC on BeOS at one point, but it must have been a couple years later than I thought. Thanks for keeping me honest :-)

You could have used VLC in 1999 or 2000 on BeOS, before it was open source.

Because, indeed, VLC was out on BeOS before Linux and Windows.

No Apple TV or airplay support seems difficult to watch from vlc on tv how do you stream or cast to appletv from vlc

This will come for 4.0

Thanks that would be great

Maybe FLOSS abbreviates Free/Libre Open Source Software

That’s how I intended it.

From a 2016 interview https://interviews.slashdot.org/story/16/08/26/1338246/the-s... (also https://www.reddit.com/r/europe/comments/7hqusx/this_is_jean...)

"Well, it's important to remind people that we don't make money out of VLC and that there is no business model around it, we're not Mozilla or Facebook. VideoLAN only receives donations and that's not enough to hire someone. VLC developers are either volunteers (the majority since VLC started) or have their consulting business around open source multimedia."

Just gave $50. I've been using VLC for years.

> I've been using VLC for years.

Good point: there is plenty of software where people have no issues with buying a new licence every couple of years,

Compare that to (in my case) sixteen years of happy VLC usage across many different computers and phones, and it's obvious that I have some donations to catch up on!

Same here. Honestly didn't realize they had no model for income.

Someone wanted to give them millions to put ads on it, but the primary maintainer said no way.


That would be me :)

Thanks so much for it!

I naively thought free projects were as resistant as VLC when it comes to manipulation for the sake of money, but big and even often cheered ones gave in.

A bad business model can be worse than having none.

Out of curiosity, have you considered monetization strategies like an open pay-per-video store? VLC is awesome, and I kind of wish it got the monetary compensation it deserves hah. I've heard that indie movie distribution is a dreadful space.

Such things does not exist because of copyright holders forces DRM

Certainly no expert in the field here, but maybe a store/market built around vimeo's "on demand" stuff? A partnership with vimeo whereby VLC would get a % of sales when purchased via VLC might help both parties (more exposure to vimeo via VLC, revenue for VLC, etc).

Is vimeo on-demand DRM free?


It seems that it's up to the content owners as to how much they would want to enable.


"When you buy a VOD, you will be able to stream its videos for as long as they remain on Vimeo. If the seller allows, you will also be able to download the videos to your computer and devices, DRM-free."

Is it not.

We are exploring some ways but we have nothing to announce yet.

Thanks - just sent you guys $50.

There are lots of excellent projects that have income issues: GnuPG, OpenBSD to cite the most prominent ones.

https://www.gnupg.org/donate/index.html (though they are at ~€5k/month now?)

http://www.openbsdfoundation.org/campaign2018.html http://www.openbsdfoundation.org/donations.html

What is annoying is many groups like this make it hard for us that have employers that will match donations for non-profits to donate.

I tried to get OpenBSD added to our companies system awhile back but the group that manages that process said they did not get a response from the OpenBSD group when they reached out to them to get a bit of information.

I can (and do) donate outside of my companies process, but they are missing out on additional money.

Yeah I gave a few years ago but considering how many hours of playback I've had since then, time to donate again.

Could they set up a Patreon, or is that only for individuals?

* Recurring SEPA transfer? (Europe-only AFAICT) * Use their Paypal link, see if you can enable recurring payment there? (I'm not familiar with this though)

Leads of other open source projects have patreon accounts

liberapay please

Thanks for the link. It had honestly not occurred to me to donate before. VLC has been around for so long, and has always worked well, been unobtrusive, and made so few unnecessary changes, that I have taken it for granted. I wish I could say the same for other open source software, then I might donate to them too.

Oh hey they take donation in crypto currency! Nice! I wish more open source projects did.

Thanks for linking, VLC has been one of my favorite pieces of software for, idk, at least 15 years, so donating is a no brainer.

Thanks for posting the link. Donating was so easy I actually did it (glad to help with $20) :))).

Tried to donate but PayPal was useless as usual

I gave 10€.

They need an Ethereum address

So that the $20 donation one minute can turn into $50 the next minute... Oops i mean $15, no $35, whoops $12, wait $27.

Edit: $14

Edit: $117

Edit: got hacked

Still better than $0.

Maybe they do, but they currently accept BTC and Monero. Just convert your ETH to one of those :)

Why donations via Paypal? Paypal sucks and steals! They make up their own (totally unreasonable) rates for exchanging Euro's to USD..

Better show an Ethereum address or so, it's just a few minutes work and might render a much larger donation due to the expected increase in price over time.

Paypal is "easy" to setup and maintain for many donation type cases like this, and provides an incredibly low barrier for entry to accept donations, this low barrier of entry can easily make up (to the developers) for the skimming done by paypal with fees and bad currency conversions. Also keep in mind that people in europe are likely not converting to USD when donating, the VLC non-profit is europe based so there's likely not a conversion there happening. It's going to happen USD to Euro though. And if that's still a concern, you can also do a direct bank transfer in europe pretty easily as they provide that information, making it without fees for a lot of EU citizens.

And while they don't have an Ethereum address, they do have bitcoin and monero, two of the biggest players in this space. It would be nice to see more options just so that one could use whatever cryptocurrency is going to have lower transaction fees at the time.

maybe because a lot of the potential people you might want to donate actually use paypal?

there's already monero and bitcoin donation addresses there, but paypal is something most people already know about and can deal with (from multiple currencies around the globe).

I've downloaded a couple of hundreds of euros last year to various open source and Internet advocacy projects, and I've always used PayPal to do so.

I love the projects I've donated to, but not enough to trust them all not to fuck up storing my banking info. This way, I have all my donations easily available via one interface that I don't use for much else.

Thanks, it's quite rare that people notice this :D

3.0 Highlights:

  * VLC 3.0 "Vetinari" is a new major update of VLC.  
  * VLC 3.0 activates hardware decoding by default, to get 4K and 8K playback!  
  * It supports 10bits and HDR  
  * VLC supports 360 video and 3D audio, up to Ambisoncics 3rd order  
  * Allows passthrough for HD audio codecs  
  * Can stream to Chromecast devices, even in formats not supported natively  
  * Can play Blu-Ray Java menus: BD-J  
  * VLC supports browsing of local network drives and NAS

> * VLC supports browsing of local network drives and NAS

Looking forward to trying this on my Amazon Fire instead of having to sideload Kodi to watch videos on my fileserver.

"Vetinari"? Like, Lord Vetinari? Just when I thought I couldn't love you guys any more...

I had no idea. I'm a huge Pratchett fan and this made me smile.

And ProRes 4444 playback. Thanks !!

Now can we transcode video into ProRes 4444 (Seriously doubt that since Apple kind of makes it only encoding on MacOS or OS X)

You can encode to ProRes 4444 with ffmpeg.

-vcodec prores_ks -pix_fmt yuva444p10le -profile:v 4444


At the end of the App ProRes White Paper released earlier this morn there's an explicit warning about using ffmpeg:

In some instances, unauthorized codec implementations have been used in third-party software and hardware products. Using any unauthorized implementation (like the FFmpeg and derivative implementations) may lead to decoding errors, performance degradation, incompatibility, and instability.

This means Perian and other software that might use ffmpeg in some form. Clearly it's not working with the current OS and causing problems with AV Foundation, which QuickTime and FCP rely on.

I have studied this last year. Yes there are some decoding bugs sometimes. I have seen them in After Effects in some special case that you can avoid, and in some Blackmagic hardware. No issue in in most softwares (Quicktime, FCP, Adobe softwares, DaVinci etc.). Note : we are not sure the bugs comes from ffmpeg. We fixed a bug last year in the alpha encoding of ProRes 4444, since then we didn't find anything wrong besides that you should use -q 1 (Quality 1, with 4 you can have a little blur in subtle background patterns).

TL;DR : everything is fine but don't use it for broadcast.

VLC doesn't care about US patents

Apple seems to care about making sure that their are capability errors.

I don't understand ?

DCP support is there too :)

That's great ! Merci Ludovic

Now to get HDR monitors

And a GPU that can output 10-bit color.

Is streamcasting to Chromecast only supported on Android?

No, its under Playback > Renderer. Its a little clunky because it has to scan for network devices but I'm still very excited about it.

> Can stream to Chromecast devices, even in formats not supported natively

So excited to stream media to my TV via a non-crapware application.

I have been jumping between Videostream, Plex and VLC nightly in the last few months. They seem to play all kind of video files but subtitles remain to be a hard problem. VLC simply doesn't support it (or I didn't figure out how to enable subtitles). Videostream is buggy. Plex works with a specific version only (had to downgrade to get back subtitles)... The search continues I guess.

We have an ugly patch for subtitles over Chromecast. It will get there.

Is Chromecast support only on Android? Or will it work on Mac too?

I like plex, despite its mysterious failures during streaming (dropped wifi, stuttering on old-generation chromecast). The UI is clear, easy for me to organize, and sub-organize things for my kids to use.

Story time: this past summer I wanted to travel from Canada to Florida (3 days 2 nights) with just me and two young kids. To save on airfair I decided to drive. I bought myself the dlink DIR-505, one of those vehicle power bars, packed my laptop running plex, plugged in my portable drive that houses all my media, and I had a mobile hotspot the kids connected to from each of their devices to watch movies using plex, it was intuitive enough for them to use. With each having headphones, I even streamed my music to the car's bluetooth using plex. We went for 12hrs on our longest day, it was a huge relief from the boredom at times.

I've never had a problem with subtitles though, can you explain what you mean?

Wholeheartedly recommend Airflow: https://airflowapp.com

Has always worked perfectly, even with 4k high-bitrate video. Supports subtitles and can even fetch them for you.

Second Airflow - fantastic app on both Windows and Mac. I donated.

I've been using SodaPlayer for a good chromecast+subtitles support! It's not as feature rich as VLC, but it gets the job done

How is Videostream buggy for you? I've been trying Videostream, VLC nightlies, and Emby. The latter two were buggy for me, but Videostream (although it is just Chrome embedded rly whatever that's called) works. So I just went for a one-time Premium tax and now I can stream. Including with a remote from my Android phone.

PS: and it has Opensubtitles support. I do sometimes have to resort to using VLC to grab subtitles (for a diff language) but even VLC sometimes does not work. Then I gotta resort to, well, a web browser to grab the sub.

I think their node app has issues with Little Snitch on my laptop.

What did you have to downgrade? Subtitles work fine with the Chromecast on the most recent version of plex?

I was running 1.9.6, after an auto update to 1.10.something subtitles stopped working on Chromecast. I looked around and found a thread[1] with many people reporting the issue with many versions of Plex. One guy said he reverted to have it working again so I tried that and... it worked! I haven't updated Plex since then. Good to know that you have subtitles working with the latest version, maybe I will update when I get home, fingers crossed!


I've found plex has a great interface, but performance when streaming to chromecast is not great

For a standalone Python program, I have good results with Cast All The Things, which plugs into youtube-dl.


This is also useful in case the amazon/google spat flares up again.

With this I guess it should be possible to daisychain from twitch to chromecast via vlc if they start another game of brinkmanship over access to video.

Absolutely. You can play any Twitch stream from VLC and cast it on your TV.

Is this possible without https://github.com/streamlink/streamlink ?

In case you're confused, eterm was just proposing this as an option. At this time the Twitch app does support casting from the desktop, Android, and iOS [0]. This roundabout solution would only be needed if Amazon decided to remove that functionality.

[0] - https://help.twitch.tv/customer/portal/articles/1691460-chro...

You don't have to dig around for the underlying video stream, you can actually just paste a twitch stream link straight into the vlc network stream dialog, I'm not sure what magic it does but that's worked even well before this new version.


Which is very useful, since Twitch's Roku app is complete and utter garbage.

And, in fact, discontinued.

I've found videostream[1] to be amazing. Kind of sucks for the small team making it that VLC has this built in now, but I guess their startup was always on shaky grounds.

1. https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/videostream-for-go...

I've had issues with Videostream, but it worked ok.

I don't think it sucks per se - VLC was always publicly planning to add Chromecast support (it's been out on a couple platforms for a while, just not the ones I care about)

Yup, I've been using videostream for years now. Seems like Chromecast support in VLC was always just around the corner, glad to see it's finally out there.

If you need this on a regular basis, check out Emby or Plex. They do transcoding on the fly for your entire media collection and fetch metadata online automatically for a really nice browsing experience. I certainly wouldn't describe either as crapware.

VLC does seem great for a one-off use case though.

Emby is awesome, unfortunately it has really low performance on Linux and they don't support raspberry pi.

Raspberry Pi works via Docker, and the previous non-Docker version also worked. I'm using it on 3 Raspberry Pis.

And on raspberry pi, with my video collection, is so slow as to be unusable.

No offense, "my video collection" is vague. What are you trying to watch? With which applications? Like, do file file_name_of_file_which_doesnt_work and post it here, or on their forums. For MPEG2 and VC-1 you need a license key for hardware acceleration. [1] They already give you a H264 license with the device but I think the default ffmpeg doesn't have support for OpenMAX by default. So you gotta compile ffmpeg with that. Instructions are on the forums.

[1] http://www.raspberrypi.com/license-keys/

>VLC 3.0.0 is the first version of "Vetinari" branch of our popular media player.


    ~ > curl -sI https://www.videolan.org/vlc/releases/3.0.0.html | grep clacks
    x-clacks-overhead: GNU Terry Pratchett
I don't use VLC, but I gained some more respect for them today regardless.

Here, I would take the opportunity to publicly congratulate to Jean-Baptiste and his team for the great job they are doing, and thank them for the joy they are bringing to many people.

Hugs and kisses

-- Havelock

Oh wow, an actual Vetinari alive!

I just looked it up and I still don't quite understand what clacks are supposed to be, other than an inside joke for Terry Pratchett fans. Do people actually use clacks for side channel data or is it just a way to keep Terry's name out there?

It's inspired by this quote from Going Postal:

"A man is not dead while his name is still spoken." - http://www.gnuterrypratchett.com

So no technical purpose, just a fun way of keeping Terry's name alive :)

In the books, the clacks is a semaphore tower used to communicate, and it's sort of a telegraph/internet system, to compare it to the real world.

Specifically, the reference is to so-called GNU messages in the clacks system, where GNU is a prefix code meaning “send the message on, do not log, and turn the message around at the end of the line and send it back again”. These messages were used as memorials for deceased clacks workers - the message would never be delivered, and would stay in the system for as long as the clacks stay running. Hence, the worker’s name will be spoken for - hopefully -eternity.

The latter.

Alright then. Hard to tell because there are actual draft RFCs out there.

Hey, you're the guy who made sway! Thanks!

I'm glad you like it :)

Just FYI, the previous branch was "Weatherwax".

Oh man that's awesome! I saw the Vetinari name and wondered if it was a Sir Terry reference or something else, respect to those folks at VLC.

Congrats on the release. VLC, or "the cone", as some non-technical people call it is a household name. We have not been able to use it as a verb yet but when you can answer so many questions with "just use VLC" you know you have an amazing product. Thank you for the hard work and keeping VLC relevant.

The cone. Whomever came up with that icon deserves way more credit and recognition.

Here's the story http://nanocrew.net/2005/06/23/vlc-cone/

One day, people from the VIA association (VIA is a students’ network association with many clubs … amongst those is VideoLAN.) came back drunk with a cone. They then began a cone collection (which is now quite impressive I must say). Some time later, the VideoLAN project began and they decided to use the cone as their logo.

+100 respect for VLC and The Cone after reading this.

I love the Santa hat on the icon, too. More projects should be playful with their logos. I hope VLC constructs additional pylons for many years to come.

I can't seem to find the 64bit build of the 3.0.0 release on the web nor on the FTP. Is there not one? Further, are there any advantages of using the 64bit versions over the 32bit? Any disadvantages? [edit - just saw this in the changelog: * 64bit version of VLC for Windows is recommended. And there is another post in this thread about it which I did not see, apologies, it looks like they will be arriving in a little while.]

Just came back to make this comment after failing to find a link. If anyone can advise...

Edit: see comments below. They had a build problem and 64bit windows is a few hours behind: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=16340935

Actually, VLC Updater is currently downloading the 64bit windows version for me. Download started 20 minutes ago.

Where's VLC Updater?

Help -> "Check for Updates" tells me I'm on the latest version even though I've only got 2.2.6 on Win10 (- and I still can't find the x64 build on their page!)

Here you go: ftp://ftp.videolan.org/pub/vlc/3.0.0/win64/

This is great! I was trying to play some somewhat obscure media files the other day with foobar and it wasn't doing a great job of it. Then I remembered that VLC must play it and not only did it, it played them almost flawlessly.

In the way a smartphone has replaced dozens of other pieces of electronics in most people's lives, VLC kind of replaces many other pieces of software. Sustaining a project like this to 3.0 is a huge accomplishment.

> played them almost flawlessly.


I didn't spot this in the release notes but looks like the UI will now accommodate high-DPI displays in Windows:


Looks like they made it worse. I have 150% UI scale and VLC 3.0 has gigantic buttons even though I don't have a touchscreen. Honestly, 2.x was better.

I think the idea is that it does it automatically so 150% is unnecessary.

Turn down the scale?

I have 125% UI scale and VLC also shows its buttons too big.

File a bug.

Good point.

Things like this make wary of moving to Windows. Most OS X apps didn't take long to become retina-ready.

VLC is one of the most common Windows software and it still took until 2018 for it to work correctly.

there are still a lot of pain points if you have a 4K display. otherwise it's mostly fine.

> there are still a lot of pain points if you have a 4K display. otherwise it's mostly fine.

I personally love the rather small text and thus the giant amount of screen estate on my 27 inch 4K screen on Windows. But other people might have different preferences or visual acuity.

text size is easy enough to change; i do love how it renders on a 4K display though.

im really talking about dpi scaling though. there are still a fair amount of apps I use frequently that don't do a good job. the recent qbittorrent update looks horrible for me. some electron apps have awkward proportions but are still usable.

I have a 28" 4K display (~150% UI scale), the vast majority of apps on Windows look perfect. Zero pain points.

One could argue that having to scale up to 150% is a pain point. If I'm switching to a 4K display I would want to use the maximum resolution at 100% scaling.

How is it a pain point? It's literally a preference designed to work with HiDPI displays. And it was set to 150% automatically (because EDID contains info about the monitor's physical size).

100% on 28" looks tiny.

Genuinely curious—so non-4k high-DPI displays work fine then?

In my experience, yes. I tried an Dell XPS 15 for a few weeks and the 4K pain points were evident with apps like Audacity, Photoshop, and VLC. I ended up learning more about Apple's high-DPI approach:


Laptops aside I've read that using a large enough display, at least 32", helps work around the Windows scaling issues. I haven't tried this yet.

Can someone explain how VLC is able to skirt around codec licensing issues?

How has VLC been able to play mp3s, DVDs, and other media formats natively when other players were forced to pay licensing fees, hence the need to buy media players 10 years ago?

The VideoLAN organization behind VLC is based in France; software patents are not recognized in Europe.

Problem solved!

Sure hope that stays intact.

VLC is clear example of lack of patents fostering innovation.

Not quite. If that were the case, piracy sites like TPB would be forever safe in a country that doesn't recognize US copyright. We've all seen how that ends up. I haven't heard of a single attempt of a patent holder to challenge VLC (not that I'm complaining). Also, they're distributing the software to people in countries where those patents are recognized.

LAME hasn't included an mp3 encoder for these same reasons, even though its FOSS software.

I always assumed the reason no one bothered VideoLAN was a combination of the fact that 1.) VLC truly has remained a non-profit project, unlike many other FOSS software that makes money via some kind of business model (ads, premium support, etc.) and (less likely) 2.) everyone loves VLC so much that even the people possibly affected by the licensing don't care because they use it themselves.

Patents and copyright are two different systems, so there's not really a relation between TPB and VLC.

How is there no relation? They're both protected forms of IP from the US. If someone in a foreign country violates this, the US makes international efforts to stop it.

The enforcement of rights is a proper function of government. Unfortunately the government does not protect everyone equally.

Copyright holders have formed a few broad, cross-industry associations in order to protect their rights as widely as possible. These organizations represent the combined interests of many powerful people and so are able to exert significant political influence.

There are no equivalent organizations for patents, and the numerous industry bodies that manage licensing are often very small, narrow in scope, and lack the funding to lobby effectively.

I think it might be because they engineered their own solutions for decoding those. Licensing fees usually need to be paid out when you use the decoder made by the company. If you figure out the format and roll your own decoder, though, I think you don't have to pay licensing fees, especially when the software is non-commercial. You can't pay for VLC so there's no damages.

What you described applies to copyright. Patent licensing is different.

There can be damages even for no-cost software because it isn't measured by the profits or earnings from the software but by the market loss on other software profits.


Nice! I tried a 1080p mkv video on 2.2.8 before upgrading and it used around 8-9% CPU. After upgrading, played the same clip and it was under 1%. Nice performance increase there!

We're happy that you are happy :)

Congratulations VLC team! I remember yours being the first software I used that "just worked" with anything I threw at it. It was incredible.

I stopped using VLC because of the whole Rebuilding font cache issue every time I opened it. It soured me a little more every time until I finally just stopped using it. I wonder if that issue is fixed.

May be time to revisit VLC 3!

For an Android-specific features breakdown: https://geoffreymetais.github.io/features/vlc-30/

Congratulations on the release. VLC has been my player of choice for quite some time now. I've been using the 3.x nightlies for some time now to get hardware decoding of 4k. Is there any way to see whilst a video is playing: a) Is the video being hardware accelerated? b) Is HDR being displayed? Most TV's pop up a little HDR icon in the top right if it is.

Will there be 64 bit builds for Windows?

Yes, we had a last minute issue with the 64-bit builds, they will be available in a few hours.

Are you seeing any performance difference in 32 vs 64? I'd imagine the vast majority of newer Windows PC that ship can do 64, but is there a great reason to run 64-bit VLC?

64bits gives you more registers (very good for codecs), but has longer pointers, so does not help too much for your cache misses.

AFAIK we didn't do an actual benchmark but when doing software decoding/encoding there should be small improvements here and there.

I have been using DAUM POT player instead of VLC for a good few years. Can someone who has used both, point me to areas where VLC is better ? (VLC's fast forward has never quite worked well for me)

I really like VLC as an organization and its open source nature. But, until now I have found it to be lacking in some areas as compared to POT player.

I use Pot Player on Windows, and VLC on android. Pot Player is the best media player I've ever used. Started using it 3 years ago and haven't looked back.

Assuming your fast forward problem refers to something that happens when you jump to a new time, that's just a different default than other media players. I think it was jump to time vs jump to frame, but I haven't used it in years.

As for why change, personally Kakao doesn't seem trustworthy.

Screen tearing and muddy audio were prime problems among them.

Hrrm. Gave it a spin with a HDR 4K video on a non-HDR screen with default settings. Washed out, over-saturated, unwatchable colors.

Tried finding tone mapping options. Apparently, those are only available for the OpenGL for Windows output. Changed to that (automatic is D3D11). Great, nice colors. Full-screened. Then back to windowed. Crash. Happens on many (but not all) 4K HDR MKV files here.

So yeah, not really working at all that well. Back to Potplayer for now (I had been using VLC for years, but for 4K videos it just wouldn't work all that well).

Nice on the Chromecast features though! :-)

I was looking to see if VLC supported resuming stream playback yet, it looks like it might have for a long time. At least I found a new option to try!


(CLI --http-reconnect /or/ Advanced (All) Preferences > Input/Codecs > HTTP(S) > Auto re-connect)

Wasn’t there some project going on to provide a WebAssembly build of VLC for the benefit of archive.org? Anyone know the progress of that?

I have a good demo about this. The issue is that all browsers have disable SharedBufferArray because of spectre...

This is a great release. I've been using potplayer for a while now and have had great experiences, any reason to switch?

No, imho potplayer is superior in everything to vlc.

still on osx: VLC 2.2.8 is currently the newest version available.

when you check for updates.

Auto updates are never enabled right after a release in case of critial regression. We usually wait for a week before starting the rollout.

I wish the macOS version were as mature as the Windows one. Many shortcuts are missing, video is stuttering if played from external HDD, audio equalizer settings can't be saved and their values are not shown on the equalizer, etc.

3.0 is miles faster on macOS now. We fixed a lot of performances issues and hardware decoding is activated by default.

The HDD issue (buffering) should be fixed, and so is the equalizer.

Just tried the v3.0 on Mac and still the video is stuttering. I believe the quality even got worse with the same settings compared to the previous version.

On the other hand, the UI has been improved a bit which is good.

How did you manage to install it? I double click the vlc-3.0.0.dmg file, but it doesn't get mounted, cannot see the content anywhere.

I can't offer any troubleshooting advice, but I can say that it works for me. On macOS 10.13.3. https://imgur.com/BQqIUsX

Is there any way for someone very much unfamiliar with large C projects to contribute?

Bug reports, bug triage, translations, documentation, guides, donations, referrals, or if you are familiar with C++ the GUI / Qt are all C++.

Monetary donations.

What format does ambisonic audio get stored in? I remember over a decade ago they had a method for storing the various harmonics in Vorbis streams in an Ogg container, but I don't remember that going anywhere.

It is now mostly in MP4 (https://github.com/google/spatial-media/blob/master/docs/spa...) or in Opus.

But everything is now SN3D/ACN

Thank you, VLC maintainers! Keep up the good work!

Most stable player on Windows by far, and the best and feature rich player on Android.

I only wish they had the post processing chops of madVR...

I accidentally selected "always continue playback from where you left off" for audio files instead of restarting from the beginning, how can I undo this change? I don't see any relevant settings in preferences (on macOS 10.12).

On Mac VLC 2.2.8 (I don't have 3.0), go to Preferences, then Interface tab, then in the middle of the list you'll see "Continue playback" with a dropdown menu. That'll fix it.

>BD-Java menus and overlay in Blu-Ray >BluRay text subtitles (HDMV) deocoder

Does that mean this version includes libbluray? Right now, if I want to play a BD I need to use an older version of VLC that was compiled with libbluray.

Yes, it includes libbluray, by default, on all platforms.

No DRM-decryption, though.

>No DRM-decryption, though.

By that, do you mean libaacs?

Either you install libaacs or MakeMKV (and don't use it to do MKV, just as a libaacs replacement).

How to install it on KDE neon? snap version looks like a virtual machine (mouse pointer??) :)


Heh. "sudo snap install vlc" got and installed the snap for me, but "snap run vlc" gets me this:

No protocol specified

Error: unable to open display :0

VLC media player 3.0.0 Vetinari (revision 3.0.0-0-gef4c265)

No protocol specified

xcb_connection_has_error() returned true

No protocol specified

[00000000009d0570] main interface error: no suitable interface module

[00000000008f93b0] main libvlc error: interface "globalhotkeys,none" initialization failed

[00000000008f93b0] main libvlc: Running vlc with the default interface. Use 'cvlc' to use vlc without interface.

File a bug.

Streaming h.264 video from Mac OSX to Chromecast is eating 100% CPU. Why is this happening? Is there a setting to not do transcoding?

Can you file a bug with this, please?

It's probably because of the profile not supported by the Chromecast.

I opened messages and saw a barrage of debug messages about Lua script for metadata fetching failing. I guess that was causing 100% cpu. Did a settings 'reset all' and restarted and that seems to have fixed the issue. But now I cannot open the messages dialog box. Will file a bug.

Very nice, congrats to the team for this. The scrubbing speed is still not quite as smooth as mpv but way better than before.

I noticed that you seem to have made improvements to VLSub as well. Is that true? It's much faster than it used to be.

I've always had great experiences with VLC, on any platform, for as long as I can remember using it. Cheers!

So glad chromecast support was added.

Happily installed it on my Macs, but sadly still no 3.0 in the iOS store (at least in Canada).

Why was the release cycle so long?

Chromecast support took much more time to implement than we originally expected, that was probably the major reason for the delay.

undocumented protocol or overly complex ?

We had to redesign a new kind of module called a renderer that has some weird capabilities and of course the Chromecast being kind of undocumented didn't help.

Is there a good reason for Google not to help vlc, as it's making the Chromecast more accessible? Chromecast doesn't seem that innovative?

Chromecast isn't free software. You need google sdk, which obviously a project like vlc can't use.

Because we merged the architecture for mobile and desktop, because we changed the decoding API to get GPU 0-copy and CPU 0-copy, because we needed a lot of changes for 4K and HDR.

And, of course, ChromeCast.

This looks awesome but I see no decoding for atmos/dts:x/auro.... :(

Passthrough will work.

is the iOS version 3.0 in review? I don't see it on the Apple Store.

Yes, it is just approved, so wait 3 hours to get it. (Their CDN is not fast to sync)

Awesome. I'm actually looking forward the Apple TV version. I currently have Infuse 5 to play 4k HDR content via NFS, it's mostly working. VLC was able to play a movie that none of the other apps were able to play but it was missing HDR. Can't wait to test the new version now.

How does VLC on linux compare these days to mpv?

This is on Windows.

From my own experience, a few months ago, on Linux mpv was still the better choice (more performant, better image quality, some more polished/reliable features like subtitles) as long as you don't mind the minimal UI (or use a front-end).

> as long as you don't mind the minimal UI

Or if you like that:)

Not shown: MPC/mpv image quality

mpv is not the same as mpc-hc

The comparison includes both.

I tested this with an mpv developer. This depends on a lot of factors, as you might be used to with mpv, but mpv was overall just as power efficient, if not better. This was done months ago with a nightly build of mpv and a nightly build of vlc, I'd be happy to do more extensive testing later if there is interest, but I decided on a particular power friendly configuration for mpv for laptop usage in the end.

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