wmp and codecs

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by spot-the-dalmation, Oct 18, 2003.

  1. Hello:

    Hopefully I have the right forum. I have some questions regarding WMP
    and codecs.

    1. How does one determine what codecs are presently installed that wmp
    is able to use? I am running xp and wmp8. The only place I can find
    info on codecs is in the sysinfo utility under
    multimedia---video/audio codecs. But--how do I know this list of
    installed codecs is being utilized by wmp---is this automatic?

    2. when you execute a codec install----does the codec need to be
    configured or otherwise played with to get wmp to use it or is this

    I have had some problems playing some mpeg-4 encoded movies on wmp8. I
    know what codec is required, but when I download and install it----it
    still does not play. I even tried to upgrade to wmp9 to try it---still
    nothing. I get the feeling I need to do something other than just
    instll the codec by executing the install file.

    Can anyone lend assistance?

    (the codecs involved are: xvid and the ffdshow MPEG-4 Video Decoder.
    Before and after I execute the installs of these codecs---on both wmp8
    and 9---all I get for these movies is a green background and what
    appears as little squares within this green background like wmp is
    trying but can't play the movie---I get no error message)

    thx---peace to all!
    spot-the-dalmation, Oct 18, 2003
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  2. spot-the-dalmation

    Martin Guest

    I find that just installing a codec is good enough for WMP to know that it's
    available - part of the installation registers the codec within the Windows
    registry which WMP uses to determine which codecs are available.

    Maybe you've got more than one MPEG4 capable decoder installed and WMP
    selects the first one it finds which is not the one that's capable of
    decoding the movie?

    Goto the Control Panel and select the Sounds & Audio Devices wizard.
    Now select it's Hardware tab.
    Scroll through the Devices list and find Video Codecs - select it then
    The Properties tab of the next window lists all the video codecs that are
    properly registered within Windows and therefore available to WMP (and any
    other programs of course) for use.
    You can look at each codecs Properties for any further Settings that you can
    change or remove the codec if you wish. Though it's obviously better to
    remove a codec with it's own Uninstall option to completely remove all of

    How many MPEG4 capable decoders have you got listed?
    Can you try removing all but the ffdshow codec - hoping that WMP will use
    ffdshow to (successfully) decode the movie and not fail with an incompatible
    MPEG4 codec?

    Hoping you can follow my thinking :)

    Martin, Oct 18, 2003
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  3. spot-the-dalmation

    Patrick Cook Guest

    Hi everyone:

    Plus, whose version of MPEG-4 do you have? There's THREE that I know of
    (and two of those can be used for streaming over the 'net - Quicktime and
    mpegable). If you have the Microsoft version of MPEG-4, that's an AVI
    codec. Quicktime and mpegable versions are MP4 video.

    There's also (supposedly) and audio-only version of MP4 out there somewhere
    too, but I haven't a clue as to where to find it.

    Hope this helps :)

    Cheers for now :)

    Patrick Cook

    Denver, Colorado
    Patrick Cook, Oct 18, 2003
  4. spot-the-dalmation

    Martin Guest

    An audio-only MP4 codec...?

    Nero SoundTrax (part of Nero 6) offers to capture audio in an .MP4 format
    This is with the LP and Tape to CD wizards.

    I haven't actually tried to use the MP4 format yet myself.

    Martin, Oct 18, 2003
  5. Thx for your inputs---I removed the ffdshow and xvid codecs and
    checked to see what other codecs I have and I do still have the
    MS-MPEG4 codec still installed. Should I remove it and reinstall the
    ffdshow/xvid codecs and try that?

    I use roxio goback---so I can freely test this option w/o and system
    harm--but--is that MS codec a required codec??
    spot-the-dalmation, Oct 18, 2003
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