If VLC media player is so great, why can't it…

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This topic contains 6 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Rev 2 1 year, 6 months ago.

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  • #3923

    Rev 2


    If VLC media player is so great, why can’t it play the audio on commercial video (movie, tv) discs? I used to be able to fiddle with settings to make it work but that doesn’t work any more…

    MPC-HC does work with no fiddling around at all but I don’t think it has a screenshot grabber like VLC does.

    Nick Francesco
    Nick Francesco

    You probably don’t have the DRM version of the various codecs. Not sure what OS you’re using, or what codecs you’re running, but that’s the likely reason. Also make sure you have the latest version of VLC.


    Rev 2

    Thank you kind sir!

    VLC was freshly loaded last night before I tried, so that’s checked off.

    The os is Windows 7 sp1.
    My card is an M-Audio Audiophile (I don’t know which one and the Device Manager doesn’t say), the driver is the latest one (2012), and I’m not real sure what a codec is.



    Commercial Video Disks (CVDs)? Is that the third generation after DVD and Blu-Ray (not counting video CDs)?

    I haven’t used Blu-Ray or CVDs, but VLC plays all types of DVDs fine for me. For DVDs, you might need to install libdvdcss if it’s not included in your version of VLC.


    Rev 2

    UPDATE: What I’m seeing is that if you go out and buy brand-name retail video discs of, say, Highway Patrol or public domain ’40s movies or recent theatre releases, their audio is done in Dolby ac3. Recently Dolby told everyone that ac3 is their property and if you want to use it, you’ve got to pay for it.

    Which is right and just. But VLC has no revenue from all of us, so they can’t be getting sued. So VLC had to remove it from current and subsequent versions.

    If there were some way for us to pay Dolby for a download for a couple bucks, I’d do it. In fact I’ll tell you what: I’ll pay Dolby, every time I use it, what Pandora pays me when they play a song of mine.

    If, indeed, this is the specific problem that I am having.



    The only reference I found to VLC removing AC3 is on iOS because Apple doesn’t allow non-Dolby versions of the AC3 codec to be distributed through the app store. It’s possible the Android and Windows app stores also have this problem. But the version distributed on VLC’s website and versions included with Linux play AC3 just fine. Where’d you get your version of VLC and what operating system are you on? If you got it from an app store, you might try downloading a version directly from VLC’s website instead. Also, which type of discs do you mean, Blu-ray or DVD?

    By the way, VLC is just a shell. The underlying video libraries are part of the ffmpeg project. The same libraries used by most media players. Also, AC3 is just a specification. ffmpeg created their version of AC3 from scratch. It shares no code with and is completely separate from Dolby’s version of AC3, so Dolby has no rights over it. Dolby can convince Apple to only allow their version in the app store but they can’t demand VLC remove something that someone else made.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by  Christian.

    Rev 2

    Wow, thanks for the informative reply!

    I got VLC from VLC. why wouldn’t I?

    So now what? The stinkin’ thing still doesn’t play the audio on DVD movies. And the VLC VLC forum has people who similarly can’t get audio with their movies.

    It did work before updating (thanks, Nick). I tried to find out when this alleged ac3 removal from VLC happened so I could just install a version of VLC from before that. I did see the announcement of the removal but I couldn’t find it again today.

    If adobe didn’t demand the removal of ac3 functionality why do I see people removing ac3 functionality because of adobe?

    Nothing makes sense.

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