Is MX Player the Best Do-It-All Movie Player for Android?
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I rarely watch movies and videos on my smartphone because the screen is too small and the default Video Player app is too primitive to use. My tablet is much better thanks to its bigger screen, but there’s still the issue of the Video Player app.

Simply put, it doesn’t offer enough control, and that’s why I long ago replaced it with an app called MX Player. It’s freely available on the Play Store, it can do everything the default Video Player app can do, but it also comes with several additional features that are useful.

Is it a contender for “best video player” on Android? I think so. Here’s what to expect from the app and why you may want to consider using it if you don’t already.

Download: MX Player (Free)

Interface

Interfaces aren’t as important for video player apps as they are for, say, note-taking apps What Is the Best Free Note-Taking App for Android? What Is the Best Free Note-Taking App for Android? If you want to take notes on your Android smartphone or tablet, you need one of these apps. Read More or budgeting apps 15 Cool Tools for Easy Expense Tracking and Budgeting 15 Cool Tools for Easy Expense Tracking and Budgeting Tracking your expenses and budgeting are two crucial parts of being financial healthy. These 15 apps make it easy to do both. Read More . Most of time you’ll be watching in full-screen mode anyway.

But the interface should be thoughtful enough that file browsing feels simple, playback control feels intuitive, and everything else is pleasing to the eye. If the app doesn’t feel good to use, it could detract from your video-watching experience, and we want to avoid that as much as possible.

mx-player-interface-smartphone

MX Player is pretty much perfect in this regard. The file browser is as clean and straightforward as could be. It automatically stays refreshed and up-to-date as you add or remove video files from your device. Navigation is simple and nothing is ever more than a few taps away.

And as you can see from the screenshot above and the one below, the interface is pretty much identical between smartphones and tablets. To bring up the navigation and notification bars, you just tap on the screen or swipe down from the top edge.

mx-player-interface-tablet

Other nifty interface aspects include a lock button (to prevent accidental taps and swipes while watching), different viewing modes (e.g. stretch, crop, 100%, fit to screen), and forced rotation that’s separate from your system-wide Android setting.

Playback and Performance

How does it feel to use MX Player? And how well does it perform on a device that’s old and tends to sputter at the simplest of tasks? Well, my smartphone is a 2012-era Galaxy S3 Mini, and MX Player ran perfectly smooth and without a hitch, all thanks to hardware acceleration and multi-core decoding.

Out of the box, MX Player supports nearly every popular codec and video format All You Need to Know about Video Codecs, Containers, and Compression All You Need to Know about Video Codecs, Containers, and Compression Explaining the difference between codecs and containers is relatively simple, but hard part is attempting to understand each format. Read More that you’re likely to run into: AVI, DIVX, FLV, MKV, MOV, MP4, MPEG, WEBM, WMV, XVID, and more. If you try to play an unsupported file, MX Player will prompt you to install an additional free codec pack that will most likely solve the issue.

mx-player-playback-subtitles

MX Player also has excellent support for subtitles The 3 Best Subtitle Sites for Your Movies & TV Series The 3 Best Subtitle Sites for Your Movies & TV Series Subtitles elevate the viewing experience. The only problem is, where can you get quality subtitles? Many sites are available, but we highly recommend the three here. Read More . Not only can it handle multiple subtitle tracks, text styling, and text coloring, but it can read more than a dozen different subtitle formats: SSA, SMI, SRT, SUB, IDX, MPL, TXT, and more. You can also use gestures to zoom text size, move text around in the screen, or even skip forward/backward in case it falls out of sync with the video.

Unfortunately MX Player doesn’t have a playlist feature, which may be a deal-breaker if you watch several videos every day or if you like to leave videos running while you multitask (e.g. work, driving, chores).

Other Notable Features

Network stream playback. MX Player can stream video files over the internet, such as from cloud storage, as long as you have the direct URL. It cannot stream from sites like YouTube or Vimeo without a lot of complex trickery (not worth the effort when you can just use the YouTube app).

Playback resume. If you close the app or stop playback in the middle of a video, then return to it at some later time, MX Player can resume from where it quit the last time — or it can start over from the beginning. It’ll ask you which you prefer.

A-B loop repeat. Most video players support repeat playback, but MX Player lets you pick a start point and an end point within the video, then repeat only between those two points.

Background audio playback. Enable this setting and MX Player will keep playing your video even if you minimize the app and switch to something else, allowing you to listen even as you address a text message or look up something on the web.

Online subtitle downloads. MX Player can look up subtitles for your current video using OpenSubtitles.org.

Kids Lock mode. Makes it impossible to minimize the app, which is great for when you want to play a video for your kids but prevent them from opening up other apps, making calls, etc.

Is the Premium Version Worth It?

The only downside is that the free version has banner ads. I haven’t run into any interstitial (full-screen) or audio ads yet, so they’re easy enough to live with, but if you want to get rid of them, MX Player Pro is available for $6.

Feature-wise, MX Player is strong and robust, making it one of the best video player apps for Android What Is The Best Video Player For Android? What Is The Best Video Player For Android? Read More . If you prefer something that’s 100% free, you may be happier with VLC for Android. If you want to edit videos, you’ll want to check out these Android video editing apps instead 5 Best Video Editors for Android 5 Best Video Editors for Android Want to get some video editing done on your Android phone or tablet? You've come to the right place. Read More .

Download: MX Player (Free)

How do you feel about MX Player for Android? Are there any other video player apps that you prefer? If so, which ones? Share your thoughts with us down in the comments!

Originally written by Saikat Basu on November 6th, 2012.

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  1. yogesh
    January 17, 2015 at 5:38 am

    new version 1.7.35 MX player not support ac3 audio.....please fix it

  2. Philip Yusenda
    March 27, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    I got a lot of anime collection, and some of them uses rare codecs. So far, MX Player can play all of them ( I uses CCCP on Windows and VLC on Linux to play them)

  3. Timothy Clark
    March 27, 2013 at 3:46 am

    How am I just now seeing this article? haha I've been wondering for months why you guys hadn't ever said at least one thing about MX Player... It's worth a nod, definitely my favorite. Love the touch controls.

    • Saikat Basu
      March 27, 2013 at 6:15 am

      That's why I say, you should search our site more often :) Glad to see my article helped in a little way.

      • Timothy Clark
        March 27, 2013 at 12:35 pm

        haha Maybe if I had the time. I've found some pretty interesting stuff on here, and some awesome how-to's. Dunno if you guys got Lifehacker beat or not though... Close call.

  4. nuXNub
    March 26, 2013 at 4:03 am

    MX Player by choice. I've tried Mobo player, BS player, Vlc Beta, QQ and the stock android player, and the best all rounder is easily MX player. Currently installed on Galaxy II and Galaxy Note 10.1.

    Kudos to the developers!

  5. Junior Yong
    February 21, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    I user MX Player for my DLNA ArkMC application.
    ArkMC can get media from different sources at home (PCs, NAS, STBs) and MX Player can play any file format! :)
    You can find it here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.arkudadigital.arkmc.gm

    • Saikat Basu
      February 21, 2013 at 10:32 pm

      Inspite of the slightly average ratings it seems to have a few approving fans. Will try it out. Thanks for the link.

  6. Paolo Maffezzoli
    December 11, 2012 at 5:24 pm

    Great tool MXPlayer for Android, the free version is good for my side. Just for your info, I installed on Nexus 7 tablet and works fine.

  7. susendeep dutta
    November 10, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    The only reason I avoid MX player is because of ads which mobo player doesn't have.Ad supported apps annoys and they use valuable bandwidth,battery and distracts users.

  8. Nuclear
    November 7, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    Fellas,

    How about doing a piece on what all apps you people have on your mobiles? Like all the Editors post a screenshot of their menu screen; What all apps they use & their review. That would be cool :D

    Regards,
    Nuclear

    • Saikat Basu
      November 8, 2012 at 5:05 am

      Good idea and thanks for that. I have forwarded it to my fellow authors for consideration.

  9. Paul Forbing
    November 7, 2012 at 1:50 pm

    I have been using Dice player and it has performed very well for me. I was getting some audio syncing issues with MX Player last time I used it. I might try it again.

    • Saikat Basu
      November 7, 2012 at 2:38 pm

      I haven't noticed any so far.

  10. Dany Bouffard
    November 6, 2012 at 7:32 pm

    I was wondering did anyone tried MX Player on a Tegra 3 Tablet with .MKV and subs to see how he handle subs. ANd also test with 10 Bits video encoded.

  11. Nikhil Chandak
    November 6, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    this MXPlayer seems to be great tool for android
    gonna download it

  12. Coeny
    November 6, 2012 at 11:55 am

    Yep def. agree, i even went for the ad free version, but that is just a personal choice. Sponser the makers of good apps.!! MX is the best arround by far, and i tried, vlc, twist and the native player. it runs fine on my experia pro mk16i.

  13. Mayank Agarwal
    November 6, 2012 at 7:42 am

    I like Mobo Player, It is like MXPlayer just a bit better....

    MUO should do a comparison of these 2.. :)

    • Saikat Basu
      November 6, 2012 at 9:33 am

      I didn't like Mobo Player much especially on my device. It didn't handle the portrait to landscape orientation too well.

  14. Boni Oloff
    November 6, 2012 at 6:39 am

    Great android video player. Maybe this one will become the most used video player in android because of the complete codec.

  15. Félix S. De Jesús
    November 6, 2012 at 5:35 am

    Good Alternative, I prefer GPlayer, but they don't have it on Android, only iOS.

  16. Deepak kapoor
    November 6, 2012 at 3:58 am

    try qq player.
    gestures available.
    quick find files and easy to use.

  17. Rajaa Chowdhury
    November 6, 2012 at 3:27 am

    MX Player is certainly a very useful app on the android platform, however I personally use the VLC Beta, maybe a ruboff of the satisfaction level derived from it's PC avatar.