alternative to vlc player for ipad?

Discussion in 'iPad Apps' started by ElDogman, Mar 19, 2012.

  1. ElDogman macrumors 6502


    Aug 8, 2008
    i had it on my iPhone but now its gone and i didn't back up.. can't find it in app store.

    i also have an ipad now and would like a player that could handle various formats (too lazy to convert to mp3) such as avi, mkv, etc
  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    DRM squabbles caused the app to get pulled.

    This link explains it and offers both CineXPlayer and Yxplayer as alternatives.
  3. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    I use AVPlayer and have found it plays any video files I throw at it.
  4. porcupine8 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 2, 2011
  5. Ashwood11 macrumors 65816

    Nov 10, 2010
  6. screensaver400 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 28, 2005
    The interface for Goodplayer isn't quite as nice, but it does play just about everything, and does it well.
  7. silentsim macrumors regular

    Jul 9, 2010
    From testing different ones I have found that AVPlayer HD performs the best
  8. aoitsukinosuke macrumors regular

    Jun 13, 2011
    I concur. Best app I've spent money on.
  9. G-Mo macrumors 6502


    Nov 6, 2010
    Auckland, NZ
    It costs a little bit, unlike VLC, but definitely the best alternative. Use it regularity on multiple iPhones and iPads.
  10. akuma13 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 10, 2006
    Have to agree with AVPlayer. It plays everything I throw at, you can manipulate video resolutions and have subtitle support. Awesome app.
  11. NikFinn macrumors 6502a


    Jun 22, 2009
    You should be able to grab it from iCloud, under the purchased section in the App store.
  12. new-to-mac macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2012
    can I port VLC from ipad1 to ipad mini

    hi, sorry for reviving an old thread.

    i have VLC on my ipad1 and got an ipad mini over xmas. is there a way to deploy vlc to the ipad mini seeing as it is not available in the app store any longer? or should i just get AVPlayerHD. reason i am asking is VLC is quite good and stable and some user reviews regarding AVPlayerHD seem more negative than positive.

  13. Menneisyys2, Jan 8, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013

    Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    1, AppStore reviews should not be bothered with, at least when it comes to a question requiring deep knowledge (which 99,9% of the AppStore reviewers simply lack) of the subject they write about. A lot of people automatically assume VLC is THE best iOS player because it's excellent (this is why those people assume all other AppStore players must be inferior to VLC) on the desktop but, alas, it's in no way the case.

    Multimedia playback is one of these complicated areas. Regarding this question, one should only trust reviews of knowledgeable people (like those of mine - check out my MM reviews posted here at MacRumors).

    2, AVPlayerHD is orders of magnitude better that VLC - there is simply no comparison. However, there are areas it's definitely worse than the other highly recommended titles like GoodPlayer or It's Playing. You might want to check out my writeup on exactly this question at
  14. new-to-mac macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2012
    thanks will read up on this! I have a few days before a 14hr flight and want to load up my mini with movies (with subtitles) to watch on the flight.
  15. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    What format are the subs in? External SRT files? Embedded ones in MP4's? MKV's?
  16. new-to-mac macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2012
    Most are SRT. Which if i remember well vlc for ipad was not handling.
  17. Luis2004 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 30, 2012
    Not to be rude or anything, but why does it require so much deep knowledge about video encoding, etc., to be able to say that if you play a movie it lags and looks crappy?

    People's eyes are pretty good sources of info, too.
  18. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    Look at the AppStore "reviews". Most of the negative ones state "this player is completely crap as it can't play back my movies / subs / audio tracks". Not a single word on what (resolution? format? bitrate?) they tried to play back or anything.

    This wouldn't be a problem with already ****** and not recommended players but even top ones like AVPlayerHD, GoodPlayer, It's Playing have received tons of such "reviews". And these players are the top players with the best compliance possible.

    When it comes to benchmarking, only head-to-head, true video playback benchmarks made under controlled conditions and on exactly the same hardware should be trusted. (I've posted a lot of them; for example, the one featuring VLC is at , comparing it to XBMC. So much for VLC being "excellent"...) Very few AppStore "reviews" compare players directly under such controlled and reliable environments.

    This is why I in no way recommend any "reviews" published in AppStore. They're almost all garbage and in no way should be trusted.
  19. Luis2004 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 30, 2012
    All right, well said. So you're saying that if we use the settings you recommended in your review, playback will essentially be as flawless as anything else? I've always converted my .mkv's to play on iPad and got so sick of it I just stopped doing it unless it was an "emergency" like a flight or something.

    If I use this app, will it be as comfortable as, say, playing an .mkv on VLC on the mac mini? Or will there be a bit more lag but "hardly noticeable"?
  20. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    They're automatically loaded by AVPlayerHD, assuming their filename is the same as the main video file.

    If you have more than one sub file for a video (in different langs) and want to switch between them, you'll either need to rename them right on your iPad before starting playback or switch to another player with manual SRT association capabilities (e.g., yaPlayer).


    BTW, I've quickly looked up the ratings of current versions of the top three generic players, AVPlayerHD, GoodPlayer, It's Playing.

    GoodPlayer: 1.5 stars - while it doesn't support AC3 and has a lower-efficiency H.264 decoder, it's still one of the best, most standards-compliant player, partcularly excellent (in most cases, best in all AppStore apps) at streaming. Deserves a much-much better rating.

    AVPlayerHD: 3.5 stars - another non-deserved (bad) rating. AVPlayerHD deserves at least 4.5 stars when it comes to decoder quality / speed, standards compliance etc. Of course it has a lot of missing functionality (lack of e.g. streaming support) but what it does it does excellently and, in many cases, by far the best in all AppStore apps (e.g., MKV playback). And it's the only choice for AC3 people (CineXPlayer, the other AC3-capable player, is significantly inferior).

    It's Playing: 2 stars: another top player with absolutely excellent and unique DSP support and significantly better streaming support than that of AVPLayerHD. Deserves a much better rating.


    For direct MKV playback (assuming their video track is H.264 and not something else - for example VC-1), AVPlayerHD is by far the best and most stuttering-free player, particularly now that BUZZ Player and HD Player Pro stopped supporting AC3 (and BUZZ have never stupported hardware-assisted MKV playback of videos with DTS audio).

    There is only one case you should look somewhere else: when you badly need runtime DSP's (brightness / audio boosting). Then, your only choice is It's Playing. Its DSP's are phenomenal but, generally, plays back MKV's a bit more stuttering.

    Of course, if you can jailbreak (iPad 1 on anything or 2/3 on 5.1.1), you can also give a try to RushPlayer+ and XBMC, they're both great and free(!), unlike the above-mentioned AppStore players. (Well, RushPlayer+ isn't free but, unless you need e.g. filelist sortability, you can live without purchasing its unlock IAP. The free version has no playback-related restrictions, only those of menu-related features.)
  21. Luis2004 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 30, 2012
    I'm running a jailbroken iPad 3 on 5.1.1. So you think RushPlayer+ and XBMC are better than AVPlayerHD for playing .mkv with H.264?
  22. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    RushPlayer+ will be the first you should give a try to. It, as it doesn't need to remux the MKV in the background ("thanks" to Apple's not making it possible for AppStore apps to use hardware acceleration directly), it delivers the smoothest results. AVPlayerHD may stutter now and then (but in no way as badly as, say, CineXPlayer).

    Remember: you don't need to purchase the IAP if you don't need the menu goodies. Video playback works just great without the IAP.

    On the othe rhand, the otherwise excellent XBMC may stutter a bit more (if your source is a 1080p video) - therefore, I only recommend it over RushPlayer+ and AVPlayerHD if your MKV's have some special features like SSA subs (they aren't supported by RushPlayer+ and AVPlayerHD) or you try to play back network streams using HW acceleration.

    If you play back HD+ movies (anything over XGA), you'll want to use the Retina-specific version on your iPad 3, not the "stock" one:
  23. Luis2004 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 30, 2012
    Nice, thanks for the tip. I'll give it a try!
  24. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    OK; definitely report back, should you have any problems. (And also if you like those apps / have some experience to share.)
  25. new-to-mac macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2012
    First off, thanks for the excellent and detailed info, much more than I understand but certainly serves as an education (at least to me). I think many of the comments you made is what makes forums so much better venues to get information (better than reviews in app store :cool: )

    I just downloaded AVPlayerHD and loaded a couple of films with subs (SRT) and it is working great. will try out some more formats

    thanks once again

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