Common issues playing Matroska files with hardware players

One of the most common question I’m asked these days is something along these lines:

My file plays just fine on my PC (e.g. in VLC), but my hardware player cannot play the file.

There are several issues that keep repeating ranging from problems with seeking to the player outright refusing to play the file. The hardware devices are often media players, set top boxes or TVs.

The cause of these issues is almost always that the player in question only implements certain subsets of the Matroska specifications. Fortunately there are several options in mkvmerge and its GUI (mmg) that enable the user to fine-tune mkvmerge’s use of such features.

I’ve therefore taken the time to explain some of these common issues, how they present to the user, their root cause and possible workarounds a user can try in a FAQ entry called “Options for improving playback on players that don’t implement the full Matroska specification“. It’s well worth a read if trying to get your device to play nice.

2 thoughts on “Common issues playing Matroska files with hardware players

  1. business daily

    Originally posted by hellfred @mosu Do you have some tips for me, how to get mplayer to work with the rm or mkv files containing AAC or HE AAC audio streams? I have read through this thread and did not find hints what to do. I have tryed to compile (1.) latesed cvs libebml, libmatroska and mplayer (disabling internal matroska support) (2.) faad2 rc3 and finally (3.) mess around with codecs.conf. Still no success. Yours helfmir Normally you don’t need an external libfaad2. Just run configure for mplayer and it’ll use its internal libfaad. The Matroska demuxer can handle AAC just fine. Don’t disable internal Matroska support, please. Use the new demuxer. For AAC in RM: I’ve submitted a patch for that yesterday, and hopefully Attila will commit it soon.

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