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The Xvid Video Codec for Mac: How Tricky Is It?

Xvid is a legacy codec. It’s not supported by QuickTime, and even third-party players don’t always include an Xvid codec for Mac. Our article documents several apps that can open this format specifically. Solve your Xvid problems once and for all!

Top choice
Elmedia Player Free
4.8 Rank based on 1531+ users, Reviews(793)
Let's find Xvid video codec for Mac.

The Xvid format fell out of use since MP4, MKV and others were more accessible. Older files require an advanced video player for Mac with appropriate codecs to be played, such as Elmedia Player or VLC. To make sure that Xvid playback doesn’t come at a cost, we’ll list all advantages and disadvantages we could discover for each piece of software. Choose carefully to enjoy your .xvids to the fullest!

What Is Xvid Video Codec?

Xvid is a MPEG-4 codec, much like x264 (AVC, used in most MP4s). However, unlike the latter, it uses the MPEG-4 Part 2 encoding standard. As a result, Xvid requires higher bitrates to achieve the same video quality as MP4. If 2 files of the same size were compared, the .xvid would lose. In addition, Xvid containers lack support for functions that would later be introduced in MP4 - most notably, subtitles.

However, lower compression has its upsides. Xvid movies use less CPU to decode, making them playable on low-end hardware, such as DVD players. You may encounter this format on old video recorders, which tend to create MPEG4 ASP videos in standard definition (SD), and movie CDs.

The free video codec that's strong in compression and quality.

The Best XviD Player for Mac - Elmedia

Elmedia Player Free

4.8 Rank based on 1531 + users Reviews(793)
Requirements: OS X 10.12+
Version: v8.8(3188), Released 19 Sep, 2022 Release notes
Category: Video

Elmedia Player by Electronic Team is the perfect Xvid player for many reasons. First of all, it’s just a well-designed app. Modifiable skipping hotkeys and timeline thumbnails are a good fit for a modern player. Elmedia’s interface is visually pleasing and accessible to all kinds of users. The menus are well-structured and uncluttered, and there’s a hotkey for just about anything.


Best video player for Mac.


This Mac video player is fully configurable. Sound can be tweaked in the 10-band equalizer, with adjustable audio and subtitle delay to deal with desynchronized videos. There are even more options in the video tuner - color balance, contrast, brightness, rotation, and deinterlacing, among others.

Subtitles can be moved around the screen, with changeable colors and fonts. Both external and built-in audio and subtitle tracks can be selected. They can also open automatically if their filename matches the name of the video.

Bookmarks and playlists make it easy to organize your library. If you get back to a file, Elmedia can (optionally) remember the timeline position, to restart it where you left off. Finally, the AirPlay/DLNA streaming feature, available with Elmedia PRO, is easy to use and flexible, supporting countless receivers and featuring compatibility options, such as live transcoding and subtitle burning.

Multiformat video player for Mac.

icon pros Pros:

  • Built-in Xvid codec and countless others
  • Can be configured in many different ways
  • Free to use
  • Convenient UI
  • Streaming done right
  • Automatic subtitle and external audio search.

icon cons Cons:

  • Many functions locked behind PRO
  • Hotkeys can’t be customized.

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Play Xvid on Mac

1

Use the Elmedia Player installer found on this site.


Download speed depends on Internet speed.

2

Open Elmedia Player and do one of the following:

  • Drag the Xvid file over to Elmedia Player.
  • Use the "Open With" option in the right-click menu.
  • Navigate to the video using "File" > "Open".

Opening a file is very simple and there are several ways to do it.

3
Click the "Play" button or press "Space".

The Alternative Xvid Player Options for Mac Users

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Top Features
VideoDuke
Elmedia Player
5KPlayer
DivX Player
VLC
Movavi Video Suite
Macgo Mac Blu-ray Player
DVDFab Media Player for Mac
Equalizer & Tuner
Equalizer & Tuner
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Playlists
Playlists
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Conversion
Conversion
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Timeline Preview
Timeline Preview
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Audio/Subtitle Addition
Audio/Subtitle Addition
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
DVD Playback
DVD Playback
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
DVD Menus
DVD Menus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Screencast
Screencast
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Free Version
Free Version
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

5KPlayer

The Xvid codec is available in this popular freeware player, along with numerous other media formats. Other than playing Xvid, 5KPlayer can also convert these videos to more compact formats, and organize them in the internal library.

Interface-wise, the player opts for a minimalistic approach, with most options residing in the right-click menu. Some basic video, audio, and subtitle settings are available. Considering the additional features, 5KPlayer is a jack of all trades. But it’s definitely far from providing the optimal user experience with its media component.

A simple media player with a user-friendly interface.

icon pros Pros:

  • All features are free
  • Converts and downloads in addition to playing
  • Broad format support, including 360 degree video.

icon cons Cons:

  • Behaves like malware
  • The player itself is simplistic.

DivX Player

DivX and Xvid are similar codecs, so it comes as no surprise that the DivX Player is a suitable solution. This app is unrivaled in the field of HD and Hi-Fi playback, even when you’re using non-DivX media. The minor editing features - cropping, framerate adjustment, and overlays - don’t make the player, but they’re a nice touch.

While DivX Player can be used for free, it’s a very limited experience, laden with ads, 15-day trials, and restricted functionality. This app can’t be enjoyed this way, but the cost for DivX PRO is somewhat steep.

The most versatile video player for all your devices.

icon pros Pros:

  • Well-made commercial player, designed specifically for HD
  • Hardware passthrough for sound.

icon cons Cons:

  • The free version has ads
  • Few settings to play with.

VLC

The VideoLan Client is always worth mentioning in a player list. It’s just about the easiest way to get an Xvid video codec for Mac. But the benefits don’t stop there. It’s well-rounded, with video tuning, sound setup, playlist creation, and all other features that became the standard for modern media players.

On the other hand, some options may be lacking, hard to find, or crudely implemented. For instance, the conversion feature is pretty bad for batch naming (but, to be frank, it’s still better than most freeware apps can provide).

To play the video, you can simply transfer the video to the player.

icon pros Pros:

  • Free, as in "libre"
  • No ads or IAPs
  • Has everything a player needs.

icon cons Cons:

  • No DLNA/AirPlay streaming
  • Convoluted UI.

Movavi Video Suite

As a video editor, the Movavi Suite naturally includes a large amount of codecs, including the Xvid codec for Mac. The video viewing feature is by far not the focal point of the app. On the positive side, it can recode the videos into QuickTime-compatible formats.

The editor part of the Suite is quick to open and encode videos, it offers stable performance and quick file import/export. While this list of advantages might not seem impressive, it’s worth noting that free apps tend to crash and have poor, underdeveloped feature lists.

Movavi is a simple, powerful tool that makes converting, handling and distributing your video content.

icon pros Pros:

  • Premium hobbyist-grade video editor
  • Converts Xvid to nearly anything with plenty of options.

icon cons Cons:

  • The player is primitive
  • Costs a lot, even the yearly subscription is expensive.

DVDFab Media Player for Mac

DVDFab is a disk-centered player with a decent selection of options. It plays Xvid out of the box. This media player can organize files into a library and form playlists. Many unusual features are supported, such as direct ISO file playback, cinematic 3D, and Dolby Audio.

Simple but quite expensive video player for Mac.

icon pros Pros:

  • Average player with full DVD compatibility
  • Suited for everyday viewing despite the DVD focus.

icon cons Cons:

  • Large price
  • Some features require add-on installation.

Macgo Mac Blu-ray Player

A DVD-focused player is a given for this list - DivX was a widespread standard for a time. As you’d expect, the Macgo Blu-ray Player has a built-in Xvid codec. Designed around large single DVD tracks, the player doesn’t even support playlists, and there are no audio/video options to speak of (other than volume controls and sync).

The few features that exist are executed flawlessly, with full Apple Remote and Touch Bar support, hardware acceleration, and overall smooth performance. If you want to use your macOS device as a DVD player, this is the right choice.

Macgo is a Blu-ray player software for Apple Mac.

icon pros Pros:

  • Comprehensive support for DVDs, including menus
  • Polished UI
  • Well-optimized

icon cons Cons:

  • Can’t do much with videos other than play them
  • Very expensive for its barren feature list.

The Difference Between Xvid and DivX

Xvid and DivX are both ASP codecs. Xvid is open-source, whereas DivX is closed-source. The latter is less buggy, more refined, to the point where it has been adopted as the industry standard. In most cases, if a player can open DivX, it can open Xvid, and vice-versa. If you’re trying to encode a file yourself, Xvid has more free tools available, but you’re better off just using AVC. It’ll play on more devices, and the files will be smaller.

It's best to have an application that can open both of these formats.

Unlike the "mundane", widespread formats, Xvid has had a bewildering amount of various tools, converters, and dedicated players designed around it. If you’re feeling confused, stick with the things that work, such as Elmedia Player or VLC. These should be enough for most .xvids you’ll encounter.

Frequently Asked Questions:

VLC plays Xvid without the need for any addons. It’s a universal mediaplayer.
The tools to convert it are free, but not necessarily for all players. The licensing of Xvid codecs allows them to be used in non-free software. Same case as MKV players.
The codec itself is not a security risk, if taken from an official source. On the other hand, players that include Xvid may be rather malicious! Use trustworthy software, like the DivX Player.
Try the Android version of VLC. Generally, Xvid files aren’t great for mobile platforms due to their size.
There are plenty of Xvid-compatible players on Windows. For instance, MPC-HC.
The codec can be acquired from xvid.com. Once installed, Windows Media Player will automatically become compatible with .xvid files.
Elmedia Player Free
Requirements: macOS 10.12 , 89.2MB of free space
Version 8.8(3188) (19 Sep, 2022) Release notes
Category: MultimediaApplication
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