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Open Source VLC media player 2.0.0 is out (videolan.org)
297 points by jbk on Feb 18, 2012 | hide | past | favorite | 98 comments

Wow. I cannot believe the pettiness of comments here. VLC is a fantastic media player, and I'm quite appalled to see the conversation here dominated by such little gripes. VLC plays media more reliably than any other program I've tried, on Windows, Linux or Mac OS X. And whether or not you consider it perfect, reaching the 2.0 milestone is something to be lauded, not bitched about.

Geeks and video geeks love to tweak at the best their media players. VLC is not the best tool for that, compared to selecting your own renderer, own codec pack+configuration and own subtitles codecs. This is normal.

However, since VLC is getting too mainstream, I see more and more of hate that is unjustified. When asked why, they cannot explain why. This is a bit annoying to be honest.

Finally, VLC being Cross-Platform cannot be the best on all platforms. We do our best, but we cannot be 100% perfect, especially with so little time. We need to do a company, but what Business Model?

Don't listen to the haters. We (me, my wife, my family) are all using VLC and don't care about anything else.

It can open all media files we care until today.

It displays subtitles correctly.

It enhances the sound of some media files that would otherwise have lower volume level when played on Windows Media Player.

It is cross-platform: we use it on Mac, Windows, and Linux.

Did I tell you that people around me are happy users (regardless the UI tweak?) because it just works with minimum effort to install?

Keep the very good work.

While praising this player let me add that I absolutely love the ability for increased playback speed!

This is a great timesaver for keynotes, lectures, and shows which move too slowly ;)

This is absolutely true. Some keynote speakers just speak rather slowly, or repeat themselves and you can easily get away with 1.3x speed. Even though it sounds funny.

I really wish there would be some sort of plugin that could select an even higher speed for silent/quiet parts.

I figured "how hard could it be" (having some experience writing tiny softsynths in the past I wouldn't even mind writing a low quality pitch-preserving resample filter) but digging into it, coding a plugin for VLC is pretty arcane. At least, I couldn't figure it out without having to dig into all sorts of audio/video decoding issues I didn't really want to get in to.

If anyone has any tips it would be greatly appreciated. I cannot promise I'll manage to code that particular filter but at least I can have some fun writing crazy VLC filter effects :)

Can't agree more. Thanks for all the great work. Keep it up!

I don't know, I just want a video player that plays anything with minimal hassle. Therefore, VLC gets installed on every new machine first thing.

I love it to bits, keep up the good work! Haters are a reeeeally small minority.

VLC is one of maybe 2 or 3 open source programs I recommend to everybody. Family, friends, girlfriend, from tech-savvy to first time computer users, mac, PC and linux. VLC is one of the few shining example of OSS at its best.

I wouldn't listen to anyone hating on VLC. Everyone will always have their preference. Personally, I find VLC to be a fantastic low-friction video player that covers all my needs (except for blu-ray which still lacks full functionality even in this release, but I know is in the works).

That's why I recommend it to everyone and why everyone I know uses it.

Love VLC. Plays anything you throw at it. Enough said...

All bitching should be invalidated on the basis that they added Blu Ray Disc support. Kudos, VLC.

Still doesn't have an option to remember playback position. Users have been asking for this on the forums for years.

Most of us use VLC to watch movies and not all of us finish them in one sitting. I hate having to find where I left off...

This is why I use SMPlayer. It has all the features of VLC and is less resource-intensive, to boot.

Edit: also displays subtitles a lot better.

Display subtitles better? You did not test 2.0.0. This is exactly what was fixed in this version.

You might need to use the OpenGL output on Linux, though.

Just updated to 2.0.0 on Arch x64, and things subtitle-wise are not much better. They still look much less grainy on SMPlayer, though I may be able to mitigate that at least partially by fiddling with the settings (though ideally this wouldn't be necessary).

But trying VLC out reminded me of a few more issues:

* Activating the controls while in full-screen mode (by hitting the bottom of the screen) is temperamental

* There's a lag after unpausing the video before audio starts playing again. Not functionally relevant, but it drives me nuts.

Did you try the OpenGL output?

VLC can use libass also for subtitles. I don't believe this is the default way it's shipped in most linux distros however.

Once it's added in and the plugin is enabled however It does do it just as well as mplayer. This is one of the reasons that I like gentoo on my desktop. It makes getting some of these things nearly trivial once setup.

Yes, I saw that on a few distributions. I do not know why this is the case. Maybe we should add a bigger warning during configure.

I use kmplayer for the same reasons.

I have yet to test VLC 2.0 though.

This is unfortunate, but this needs a correct media library to do so.

It will come in the next version.

Submit a patch, (or pay someone to develop it)

Or develop a patch yourself. We are hackers are we not?

It is my understanding that that is what is meant by submit a patch!;)

Note to self stop writing comments just before bed.

That's why I have vlc running on pause in the background right now. Only since 30 hours, but still.

Anyone else having issues with the delay in volume control? I'm used to the volume changing instantly whenever I change it with the mouse wheel, but in 2.00 there seems to be an annoying delay of about a second for each change, at least on my PC.

This appears to be the relevant bug: https://trac.videolan.org/vlc/ticket/5654

Thanks for the link. It certainly looks like it.


Some audio outputs have changed to the new mode, some have not. It will come in some future minor releases.

In the new version, it also seems to actually change the volume a lot more drastically (at least above 100%), which is a good thing.

It used to be a linear scale, which is a nonsense. Now it use a quadratic scale (faster to compute than a log and close enough)

Interesting. I can't imagine that computers would have any trouble computing the log of a small integer many times per second.

No, but quadratic is faster and the result (here) is close enough to be good.

Does the move to LGPLv2.1+ for libVLC, libVLCcore and libcompat allow for Applidium's VLC iPhone port (http://applidium.com/en/applications/vlc) to be resubmitted to the App Store after some minor changes?


We also need to move many VLC modules to LGPL, since VLC/iOS needs static linking on this platform.

But, I am working on it. It takes a lot of time, and I am already doing much on my free time.

I don't think so. According to the FAQ they don't think it'll change (http://www.videolan.org/press/lgpl-libvlc.html). The LGPL requires dynamically linking the library or providing the raw object files if statically linked to allow the end user to change the LGPL library in the code. I've read that the app store's code signing + pay wall to get a signing certificate violates this exception, so it looks like a no go. It would have been nice if they added in a static linking exception.

Hopefully this will allow for other open source software to link to libVLC without having to fully upgrade to GPL however.

Even if it's not available in the App Store, you can get it here: http://www.videolan.org/vlc/download-ios.html

Ok, so first thing it did upon starting a movie in OSX was decide to rebuild the font cache.

Wasn't this a problem on windows that was fixed?

Same here. I also find the "Use the native fullscreen mode on OS X Lion" option terribly slow.

I can't believe this option is enabled by default, native fullscreen mode is by all accounts a bug marketed as a feature in Lion, especially for a video player. It provides zero functionality over "non-native" (??) fullscreen, and actually severely degrades the experience in many situations. Namely, if you have two monitors, native fullscreen is completely broken as it:

1. Forces you to full screen on the main monitor regardless of which monitor the window is currently in. So if you click it on your left hand monitor it jumps to your right hand monitor.

2. Forces you to look at linen (!!!) in the other monitor. It doesn't even do the slightly less broken behavior of giving you black on the other monitor, it literally fills it up with that ridiculous linen repeated pattern so that it can optimally annoy you as you are watching the movie. Not to mention that you should have the option of actually using your other monitor for actual work.

This is why I just can't use iTunes or Quicktime for watching video content anymore. Because someone literally went in and deleted working code. Quicktime used to have nice options for blacking the other screens or not, etc. and they were taken out. Were people demanding this feature in VLC or something?

> I can't believe this option is enabled by default

Because it's the platform default. That's how it should be.

> It provides zero functionality over "non-native" (??) fullscreen

Wrong. It puts you in another "Space".

You can argue that you like OS X's fullscreen feature, but VLC implements it just how it sould be.

> Because it's the platform default. That's how it should be.

Yep, this is the exact reason. None of the developer like it much, but using the default option on a platform improve the integration.

> Wrong. It puts you in another "Space".

Again, I do not consider this to be "functionality", but a bug. Spaces were and continue to be very much a pro feature which most common users do not understand. To shove it down everyone's throat when they think they are just making a window bigger is pretty bad UI. Notice the name of the feature is "full screen", not "new space that behaves different than every other space by being exclusive to one app". In fact, to higlight this, it sometimes doesnt even actually fullscreen! As with the new Messages app, it doesn't full screen the app but rather makes it take up roughly half the screen, surrounded by linen, in it's own space (all in single monitor mode btw). So if they want to have that silly button on the top right of the window, the maybe-fullscreen-maybe-not-but-for-sure-a-different-space button, then by all means. But dont make this the behavior of cmd-f which has meant something totally different for the last 10 years.

To be fair, using multiple displays on a Mac is not exactly a common use case so that would explain why they've chosen to enable it by default.

I had to go in and delete the old version of VLC (1.12) that I had installed, and also delete the old preferences before the new version would work properly for me.

The new graphical look in OSX (perhaps other systems as well, I don't know about them) has gotten some critique, but I think it looks great.

There was a script provided with the OS X .dmg (at Goodies/Delete VLC Preferences)

I love VLC. Just today I was playing around with the streaming feature which I had not realized was so awesome. Plus the fact that it plays anything I have asked it to. Glad to see this open source project going strong! Keep up the good work VLC devs!

First off, VLC is awesome, and VLC team are heroes, imho.

I ended up having to go back to 1.11, as it ended up choking on the 1080p60 files my vidcam produces, though at first, for a minute or two, it worked better than 1.11 win32 (where i have to slow it down to 67% speed to get smooth playback).

The u.i. changes (removal of slow down and speed back, and see playback speed) threw me for a moment, but then I saw I could customize the u.i. really easily, which was great.

Can't wait til the day it can tap into my Nvidia GPU (460), but i know that's a non-trivial problem.

Anyhow, overall, congrats to the team, and I look forward to some additional upgrades so I can tap into the new features.


They are not removed, just hidden by default. The view menu and the customize menus are your friends.

I'm curious why no one ever brings up the legal status of VLC. It's an incredibly popular program, and is likely illegal in the US. Their FAQ (http://www.videolan.org/support/faq.html) used to make this explicit, mentioning who and where you'd have to send payment for patent royalties and that decoding DVDs is against the DMCA, whereas now any mention is relegated to the legal section (http://www.videolan.org/legal.html), where they encourage you to make your own judgment.

Wayback machine: http://web.archive.org/web/20091201230711/http://www.videola...

The USA is not the world. Many US software is illegal in other countries, that doesn't mean we need to keep telling everyone that (say) some software is illegal in China everytime it comes up.

VLC is far from the only project to face this problem unfortunately. The Linux Mint devs likewise state it is "designed in Ireland and conforms to both Irish and European law", something H-Online talks about: http://www.h-online.com/open/features/HealthCheck-Linux-Mint...

Loving everything about this!

>New video outputs for Windows 7, Android, iOS and OS/2.

OS/2 ? Why ?

Why not?

My guess, and it's just a guess, is that a few guys with old OS/2 machines thought it would be cool, so added it. Highly unlikely they devoted mainline VLC devs to it.

And you are exactly right.

One guy, from Korea gave use very high quality patches for OS/2 that did not break other platforms and were easy to maintain.

On what ground could we refuse them?

I just thought there's some secret OS/2 using club (outside of legacy industrial machines :))

There totally are. People still use OS/2 because they think it's the best desktop OS ever created, they are tiny in numbers but are more than capable of serving themselves' needs.

http://www.ecomstation.com/ - they even have this.

Maybe an ATM manufacturer trying to add some flair to their standby displays

What do they mean with "New video outputs for Windows 7, Android, iOS and OS/2." ? It's not the "android" or "ios" version they are talking about, since those are still in development, right?

Android nightly build works fine. We need to finish the UI.

I'm still using the old 0.9.9 version because that's the last version that has the old Slow Motion = Deep Pitch sound effect when you slow down the music. I actually like my music to sound deeper when I slow it down. So I've refused to upgrade for years.

Preferences - Audio - Uncheck Enable Time-Stretching audio

I did need to restart VLC for that to take effect. This is VLC 1.x (whatever the latest in the Ubuntu repos is). I suspect the option is still available in VLC 2.

Not only there is an option to deactivate this, but VLC 2.0 gives you better resampling quality and does not cut audio files in the beginning and the end.

I love Depeche Mode 45 rpm in 33 rpm.

Interesting new look. I was excited about getting HTTP Live Streaming support in VLC, however, it seems to be broken for sliding playlists, which is surprising since I thought it hooks into libav* for a lot of that stuff, which does have support.

VLC HLS support is not using libav, for many reasons.

Can you file a bugreport for a sample?

I'll see what I can do, unfortunately generating a sample sliding window playlist isn't the easiest thing in the world to do (I can't post the feed I'm testing it with). Looking at access logs it appears to have something to do with reloading the playlist, as the access intervals don't look like Quicktime's or an iPhone's.

Made me think how much effort goes into the stuff so I can say "I was just watching a video on the second monitor using VLC."

Seems like version 1.1 does not pick it up for update via 'Help / Check for updates'. Dont know if its by design or a little, tiny bug.

Does anybody have a link to the source? It's giving a 404 from the website right now.

OOps. Just fixed it.

Love VLC! Good to know it is moving to LGPL, if it means we can have VLC on iOS.

Any pointers to Ubuntu (10.04) packages for this version of VLC?

10.04? No. But this PPA seems to have the up-to-date package for 11.10: https://launchpad.net/~n-muench/+archive/vlc

Windows and OS X only?

Source is done and packagers for Linux are doing builds now.

It's on Linux, too; the source is out so it's out for every system they support, but they have Linux builds.

The VLC team likes people to get it from their distro's package repos. On Ubuntu (Oneiric, Precise) you do that by adding the correct PPA to your sources list. This website has more info: http://iloveubuntu.net/vlc-20-released-ppa-available

Basically, though, do this at a command line:

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:videolan/stable-daily

    sudo apt-get update

    sudo apt-get install vlc

I love VLC but my buddy swears by Media Player Classic (at least on Windows). Anybody else?

When all else fails, VLC always works. Media Player Classic (on windows) does a fair job, but breaks a lot as well. VLC doesn't break for pretty much any medium :) Love it.

Thank you guys. I prefer VLC on all the platforms I use. It gives me what I need for free.

And I still can't use the multimedia keys on my keyboard to control it while minimized.

I can't find any indication that this new release supports 3D, did I miss something?

Nope, only a fork does.

Does it consumes more CPU than 1.12?

on my core duo, intel crap gpu, winxp it did consume much more.

  test : old, low quality 480p divx

  version     |  cpu usage  |  comm.
  vlc 2.0.0f  |  ~ 15%      | half of it being system calls.
  vlc 1.1.11  |  > 1%       | smaller than one pixel in proc.exp graph
sad since vlc was usually the lightest ( sometimes trading quality for fluidity )

This is a bug then. Can you file a bugreport or mail me?

mail sent at gmail.

Sorry for not having filed anything, I'm still don't have this reflex...

How is it acceptable that SourceForge download links are HTTP and not HTTPS?

Is there a reason this comment was modded down?

I didn't vote down, but why would open source downloads need to go over HTTPS? It's very expensive to encrypt such large files for each download. Furthermore, many of the advantages can be gained by checking the MD5.

And we supply md5, sha1, sha256 (overkill, yeah!) + signature of all packages.

VLC is probably illegal in some countries due to the patents applying to a lot of video and audio codecs. If Sourceforge downloads were over an encrypted connection, one could avoid monitoring.

That illegality applies to the developers of VLC, not to people downloading it.

SSH tunnel to a cloud server in Europe, then download over that.

Are checksums provided over HTTPS anywhere? If not, then this doesn't help with MITM attacks.

On OS X: MPlayerX - On Windows: MPC and/or KMPlayer

Until VLC becomes more "native" on OS X and improves its interface, I don't think I'll be using it. In any case, I've downloaded it on my PC, so I'm keeping an open mind towards it.

MplayerX and Movist are both in Mac App Store and both are playing one upsmanship on releases since getting there. It's great for video loving users.

I normally use Plex Client (playing from Plex Media Server) but some sources crash Plex if the type of digital audio changes midstream, so I'll play that source in one of these, depending on whether I need the subtitles or am watching a whole series at once.

VLC 2.0 has a more native interface. Instead of commenting, you could, at least, click the link...

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