Unsupported audio-video codec is a warning which pops up when the video player can’t play the audio or the video of a file. If the issue is with the audio, then you get an audio error and with video, it’s a video error. If that’s what you are facing, then here are three different fixes in 2020.
Table of contents
- Quick solution
- What is a codec
- Using VLC Media Player
- Converting on Android
- Converting on PC
The easiest fix is using the VLC Media Player or MX Player on your phone. If you want to learn more about those apps or wish to play the video in the default video player, then follow the way 2 or way 3. Watch the video to see how VLC can fix unsupported audio/video codec issue.
What is a codec?
According to Wikipedia, a codec is a program which encodes and decodes a digital data stream. To understand why you get unsupported audio/video codec, you must understand what a codec is. You might have seen the extensions like MP3, WMA, etc., at the end of an audio file name and MKV, WMV, etc., on a video file name. These extensions are called containers, and these contain codecs. The video and audio files take a considerable amount of space, so developers use the codecs to compress the file into a transferable source.
Each video player comes with the ability to play (installed) certain codecs. If a codec is not installed and you play the video which contains that codec, the player will not be able to play the audio or the video. The default Android video player supports limited codecs, so many users get this warning while playing an unsupported file such as .MKV.
Using VLC Media Player
The goal here is to play the video, and the solution is downloading VLC Media Player, which is a free and open-source media player. VLC Media Player comes with a vast amount of codecs installed, making it more powerful than the default video player. Other than VLC, there is MX Player, which also supports the majority of formats, but in the test of VLC and MX Player, VLC won by playing ten out of ten videos.
Converting on Android
You may want to play the video in the default video player for some reason. The easiest way is to convert the video. Try Video Converter to convert the video. MP4 formats videos tend to work fine on Android devices. There should also be an option to choose Android as a source. If using some other app, be careful because some apps do not convert the sound. In that case, the audio may not be supported.
Converting on PC
These days it’s hard to find a free and relevant video converter. Many converters show a watermark. The converter we are going to use in this tutorial also leaves a watermark. Anyway, once the video is transferred to the PC, download a video converter. A couple of converters are Freemake Video Converter and Any Video Converter. While converting, make sure you understand what resolution your device supports. If your device is one of the latest ones, then 1080p would be fine. Otherwise, 720p would be the ideal choice.
If you don’t want the watermark, you can use the free advanced video editors such as HitFilm Express. The software is free, but it requires a good computer to run at its best.
If you still need some help, here is a step-by-step tutorial. The post uses Freemake Video Converter, but the technique should be similar for most of the converters.
Step 01: Click on Video and then add the video you want to convert.
Step 02: Once the video has been added, click on “to MP4” in the footer. MP4 is one of the popular extensions, and most Android devices support it.
Step 03: The convert screen will be displayed. It would take some time to convert the video. Click on the “Convert” button to begin. Once the video is converted, you will be able to play the video on your Android device.
With great phones and apps, we expect everything to be fine, but it’s not the case. I hope you found the solution to your issue. Please feel free to ask any questions in the comments and subscribe to the newsletter for post updates.
Madhsudhan is a professional software engineer. He has been writing about Android and PC for over two years.