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Play SWF on Mac with Elmedia Player

From time to time, Mac users need to play a SWF file and find that the task is not as easy as it might seem. Luckily, you just need a SWF Flash player for Mac to get the job done, and this article will provide you with all the information you need on how to find the best SWF player for Mac.

NOTE: SWF playback functionality is limited on M1 Macs. Get more information here.

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Elmedia Player Free
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The SWF extension stands for Small Web Format. This format is used for vector graphics, multimedia, and developing interactive apps in the ActionScript environment. To open .swf files downloaded to your computer, you will need a dedicated Flash player. Let's look at some of the most effective tools.

The Ideal SWF Player for Mac - Elmedia Player

Elmedia Player is a free SWF file player Mac users can rely on. It comes with plenty of options and controls for a great experience. It offers users the possibility to set the default quality for SWF files and manage Flash local security settings. You can keep Elmedia SWF Player on top of all other apps on your computer and also enjoy your Flash movies in full-screen mode without any distractions.

Files app is automatically synced via iCloud.

How to Open SWF file on Mac using Elmedia

1. Install Elmedia on your Mac.

You can download Elmedia from the official website and easily install it as any other Mac app.

Install SWF player Mac
2. Choose the animation to watch.

You have the following options to add SWF files to Mac SWF player:

  • Drag SWF files onto the opened app or onto its Dock icon;
  • Select File from SWF player menu and click Open;
  • Right-click the animation in Finder -> Open with -> Elmedia Player.

Open SWF on Mac with Elmedia
3. Enjoy!

Watch any SWF animation and more.

Open SWF on Mac Using the Following Elmedia Features

Tweak the Audio Settings

Elmedia offers plenty of settings when it comes to the audio experience. The virtual surround feature makes the HD sound feel alive for a complete headphone listening experience when using this music player for Mac. On the other hand, the Virtual speakers for headphones settings will make the sound from your playlists feel as if it is coming from loudspeakers, even when using headphones.

Video Player for Mac with Subtitle Support

Calibrate subtitles to suit your preferences. You can set for an automatic download, or choose manually. You can also play SWF on Mac and decide on fonts, size and colour.

Open onlive video with Elmedia

Watch SWF Files on Chromecast, AirPlay, or DLNA devices

Don’t be limited to watching SWF on Mac, you can stream to an Apple TV, smart TVs via Chromecast, or DLNA-certified devices and enjoy your media on the big screen. Adding a bigger set of speakers to a big-screen TV will enhance your viewing experience and you will make the most of your experience.

Stream SWF files from Mac to any devices

How to View & Play SWF Files on Mac with Web Browsers

Web browsers can be used as a rudimentary SWF player Mac users can utilise. They lack the extra features of desktop apps, but they generally work ok. You’ll need to install an Adobe Flash plugin, which should then allow you to play SWF on Mac by simply dragging and dropping them on the browser. All major browsers have plugins that allow them to be adapted to this task.

Unfortunately, Flash files are gradually becoming obsolete from the point of view of software developers. That means that most modern editions of browsers do not come with Flash players by default, and you’ll need to install your own plugins to play SWF on Mac. Older browsers will have it, but the likelihood is that you’re using a version recent enough to have either made it an opt-in choice, or something that simply isn’t available any more. If you do install plugins, make sure you get them from official sources, as unofficial ones could carry malware or viruses.

SWF player for Mac: other alternatives

SWF File Player

As the name suggests, SWF File Player is a player that enables playing SWF files. It is free, easy to understand and compatible with Windows. To open an SWF file, you just need to download SWF File Player, head into File > Open and select the .swf file you want to view. When the file is uploaded, additional options will be provided to choose from. To view an SWF file in standard mode, just press the play button.

SWF File Player

icon pros Pros

  • Completely free
  • Portable
  • Open interactive SWF files
  • Automatically resizes the program window.

icon cons Cons

  • Plays only SWF files
  • Doesn’t provide a drag-and-drop command.

Supported OS: Windows

GOM Player

GOM Player is a free media player that handles plenty of audio/video formats, including SWF, MP4, MKV, MP3, M4A. It is quite easy to use and already includes codecs. GOM Player supports subtitles, 360-degree video playback, and allows using keyboard shortcuts. For example, to open the SWF file, press Ctrl+O.

GOM Player

icon pros Pros

  • Allows playing VR videos
  • Supports hotkeys
  • Opens SWF files seamlessly.

icon cons Cons

  • Shows ads during SWF playback.

Supported OS: macOS, Windows


KMPlayer is one more media player capable of playing SWF. Besides SWF, it supports MKV, MP4, MOV, 3GP, and many more, and includes various playback options and additional features. This multifunctional player is compatible with Windows and macOS. What’s more, KMPlayer lets you download videos from YouTube, Dailymotion.


icon pros Pros

  • No need to install any additional codecs
  • Support for mobile platforms: Android and iOS
  • Handles a wide variety of media files.

icon cons Cons

  • Shows ads
  • Runs slower compared to other media players.

Supported OS: macOS, Windows

VLC Media Player

VLC Media Player is an open-source cross-platform media player. It can be used to play SWF files and almost any multimedia format without having to download any additional packages. VLC Media Player is ad-free and contains features such as subtitle sync, video and audio filters. In addition, this player can be successfully used as a media file converter.

VLC Media Player

icon pros Pros

  • Free and open source
  • Is compatible with all platforms
  • A wide range of supported file formats
  • Allows opening SWF files from URL.

icon cons Cons

  • The video quality may be damaged.

Supported OS: macOS, Windows, Linux

Media Player Classic

Media Player Classic is a free media player for Windows that supports almost any video and audio format you can think of. SWF files play without problems. The interface is clear and not overloaded with unnecessary functions and seems to be inspired by the oldest versions of Windows Media Player. Features include subtitle support, video frame capture, and real-time panning and scanning.

Media Player Classic

icon pros Pros

  • Lightweight and doesn't take up much space
  • Multiple format support
  • Provides basic configuration options
  • SWF files can also be opened via the URL.

icon cons Cons

  • You need to change the settings to run the SWF files efficiently.

Supported OS: Windows

Since both Adobe and pretty much all browsers are phasing out Flash support, you’ll need to get a third party SWF player for Mac to play any Flash files you may have in your library. You can play your SWF files online, but then you need to install the appropriate SWF player Chrome plugins for your web browser.

Now that you know the most commonly used players that can open SWF files, you are sure to find a media player that suits your needs. Just check the features, read reviews and choose the right one. While there are SWF player online solutions, we still recommend using dedicated media players. Third-party apps such as Elmedia Player that have a host of other capabilities besides playing SWF files are the best choice.


Short for Small Web Format - also known as ShockWave file - SWF is an Adobe Flash format containing videos and vector animations. It was mainly used by Macromedia before being bought by Flash and it’s a format to deliver multimedia content on the internet with minimum resources and top security. Since it’s a mainly online format, you won’t be able to open SWF on Mac without a reliable player. Adding a SWF Player for Mac will enable you to watch any videos in this format and if you don’t want to install new software on your Mac, the only option is to convert SWF files to a different format.

Elmedia Player is the ideal tool for playing SWF files. Elmedia can handle a huge range of different file types, including all those that are used for Flash videos. It also offers a number of other features such as subtitle support, choice of quality and resolution, and the option to broadcast to other compatible devices. Elmedia is also one of the top FLV players.

Adobe has dropped support for Flash Player and most browsers followed suit. To play flash files, you need an Adobe Flash player alternative, i.e. a program like Elmedia Player.

Flash is vulnerable to viruses and hacker attacks, it is also outdated. However, SWF does not pose any threat to your server, since it is downloaded to clients and is launched there. Also, to ensure the file is safe, you can run a scan and check it for malware.

To open SWF files using VLC, you’ll need to install and launch VLC Player, choose the SWF file and right-click it, then select “Open with” and choose VLC Media Player from the list. Alternatively, open VLC and go to "Media" > "Open File".

VLC can play SWF files, but not always. However, you can convert the file to the preferred format and then open it in the VLC Player. VLC supports a variety of formats and can be used as an F4V player.

Flash files such as SWF are supported on the official VLC SWF player for Mac. If you want to open them on an iOS device, all you need to do is install the VLC app. You can now use this app to play SWF, FLV and other flash files on your portable device.

Elmedia Player Free
Requirements: macOS 10.12+ , 89.2MB of free space
Version 8.8(3188) (19 Sep, 2022) Release notes
Category: MultimediaApplication