MP4 is one of the most vividly used formats. Even though the format is easily played on different operating systems, the built-in video player for macOS, QuickTime, can sometimes fail to open this type of file. In this article, we've gathered several QuickTime alternatives for your consideration. So, let's take a look at how to play MP4 on Mac flawlessly.
The main reason why QuickTime Player can’t always play MP4 on Mac lies in the format encoding difference. In general, QuickTime is able to handle MP4 files that are encoded with MPEG-2, MPEG-4, and H.264. So if you face the issue that your QuickTime is unable to playback MP4, most likely the file was encoded using a different standard.
According to Apple:
"Older or specialized media formats might not work in your app, because the format requires software designed to support it. If that happens, your app won't open the file or won't play back its audio or video"
Among the other possible reasons is also the outdated version of QuickTime Player. So check whether you are using the updated version as some functions can’t be operated under an outdated version, that is why cursing issues with playing MP4 on Mac.
Last but not least reason why QuickTime can’t open MP4 on Mac is the file state. The file can be damaged or corrupted and that is why you can’t open it on Mac.
Unlike the native macOS media player QuickTime, Elmedia Player can handle different container formats and codecs. This video player for Mac guarantees seamless playback no matter if it is MKV, WMV, MOV, WMA, M4V, DivX, FLAC, M4A, WAV, or even an OGG file format.
Having an easy-to-use interface, Elmedia has gathered the most necessary features for comfortable playback of your favorite movies. Among its arsenal, you can find such features as the ability to create playlists, the ability to open additional audio and subtitle tracks and sync them up, the ability to export and import bookmarks, support for picture-in-picture mode, and way more.
The app is distributed in the free and paid version. Upgrading the Elmedia to the PRO version will provide additional features, however, the free functionality will be enough to open MP4 on Mac and have comfortable video playback.
Rating in App Store: 4.5 out of 5
"Elmedia Player is a strong option for people who need to play many different types of video files. It is a versatile program with a slick modern interface that can be used for a variety of purposes."— By Nicolas Calderone, MacSources
Launch Elmedia Player and choose the way to open the MP4 file:
Unlock even more features offered in the paid version of Elmedia Player and benefit from them all. Have an amazing experience of paying MP4 on Mac.
|Stream||Manage subtitles||Adjust video and sound|
|Support for both streaming and receiving functionality.||
Integrated subtitles search via opensubtitles.org.
Built-in subtitle search via opensubtitles.org.
|Enhanced video tuner for fine adjustment of color parameters.|
|Open Online Video feature allows streaming content from YouTube, Vimeo, or Dailymotion with absolutely no ads.||Ability to adjust appearance (font, size, color, encoding).||Support for deinterlacing.|
|Ability to stream files in the original formats as well as convert incompatible formats on the go.||Support for synchronization adjustment.||Support for endless loop for any video segment.|
|Ability to stream MP4 as well as other formats to Apple TV, Chromecast, or Smart TV.||Ability to play videos on multiple monitors in full-screen mode.|
Wondering how to play MP4 on Mac easily besides using Elmedia Player? We have included several converter apps, in case you are limited to the QuickTime Player and another powerful video player for your consideration.
Movist Pro is another excellent app that can help you seamlessly handle MP4 on Mac. The app was originally developed based on QuickTime and FFmpeg decoders. It is a highly customizable player for Mac that features lots of functions for the most convenient video playback.
Among its arsenal, you can find support for accelerated decoding with H.265, the ability to use multiple subtitles at once, the ability to stream from YouTube, automatic playlist generation, etc. Besides that, Movist has the Safari extension making it the best online MP4 video player.
Launch the app. You can use one of the several methods to play the video:
If you are looking for a compact MP4 video player for Mac, but with many different options, JustPlay is worth your consideration. It supports almost any video or audio format, including MP4, MOV, AVI, SWF, MP3 and other common formats. This app is also able to work with such resolutions as Ultra HD, 4K and 8K thanks to hardware acceleration, as well as features advanced settings for playback and subtitles. On top of that, there is a deinterlacing feature that allows improving the quality of videos.
In fact, the list of features goes on and on. If you're still in doubt whether to install JustPlay or not, here are its pros and cons to help you decide.
VLC Media Player (formerly known as VideoLan Client) is a very popular free video player that flawlessly opens WMV and most other formats on Mac and other operating systems. The app is capable of playing 360-degree videos and multimedia files up to 8K resolution.
VLC offers lots of handy features for video and audio playback. What’s more, it also provides converting and recording options, and comes with downloadable plugins for more advanced functionality. There are some downsides, however, and one of them is the not-so-intuitive menu. This can make it difficult to find many of these features.
Alternatively, you can convert MP4 video to another suitable format. If the video won't open on your Mac, converting will be a great option to watch it on your device. Luckily, there is a wide variety of converters available, both online and downloadable. Below we have compiled one of the best converters for your consideration.
MacX Video Converter is an efficient software that allows you to compress or convert video files at the highest speed without losing the quality of the file. It comes with many features and different formats to choose from thus helping you with the issue of playing MP4 on Mac.
In addition, MacX Video Converter also serves as a YouTube, Vimeo, and Vevo downloader and way more. The application can handle virtually any format, and the list of supported devices includes more than 420 profiles.
Supported OS: macOS, Windows
Wondeshare UniConverter is a powerful, sophisticated yet easy-to-understand and operate video converter that can help you with the issue of how to play MP4 on Mac. The app is used to convert video, audio, and images to many formats, including MP4, MKV, MP3, FLAC, JPG, and PNG, extract and copy media from physical (CD and DVD) and online sources, and even burn media to removable disks. Moreover, thanks to the batch conversion function you can convert multiple videos at once, thus saving you time.
Supported OS: macOS, Windows
An MP4 file, or the .mp4 format, is a multimedia container created to store audiovisual data. It was created by the Moving Picture Experts Group (abbreviated MPEG), and it’s one of the most popular video formats out there. It can handle digital video and audio streams, as well as subtitles and images. Being capable of Internet streaming is yet another advantage you get from using an MP4 file.
While MP4 is a container format that can hold most codecs, only a few of them will be considered "correct" and supported natively. If you choose other codecs when encoding your MP4, this may lead to incompatibilities in default system players such as QuickTime. An MP4 is expected to contain any of the following:
As opposed to the standard MP4 and M4A, Apple owns several variations of MPEG formats, altered to add DRM, increase macOS compatibility, and add functionality, such as chapters. These files include:
As you see playing MP4 on Mac is not a complicated thing. You can always use macOS native player QuickTime. In case the player is incapable of playing this file, you can always rely on third-party apps, like Elmedia Player. We hope that our article was helpful and you figured out how to open and watch MP4 on Mac.