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Definitive FREE Software list for everything Audio/Video (and anything in between)!

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  • Definitive FREE Software list for everything Audio/Video (and anything in between)!

    This is a work in progress, so check back once a few weeks for new stuff!
    Do your registry a favour, and get portable versions of software you will use occasionally/once-a-while/never.
    Last updated - 08 March, 2015

    I. Music Production/Creation and Audio Editing

    1. Psycle Modular Music Creation Studio - Interface takes some time to get used to, one of the best, actually 'free' ones out there.
    2. LMMS - Intuitive interface, best for a beginner. My favourite.
    3. Audacity - Mainly for editing clips, podcasts and audio instead of music creation. Absolutely love it (no sarcasm). My biggest mistake would be making my first remix with this. Never again.
    4. Hydrogen - Beat maker, Drum Machine.
    Virtual MIDI Piano Keyboard - Turn your keyboard into a MIDI Piano. If you want to start producing music seriously, get a cheap real MIDI keyboard, (and please learn music theory. It does help)
    5. Mu.LAB - Not for me, but may appeal to you.

    II. Video Editing/Post processing/Creation
    1. AVIdemux - Despite the name, it works on most containers/files. Convert, split, join and enhance files. The best choice for intermediate/advanced people. Even beginners, if you're a quick learner and aren't afraid to break anything ;)
    2. Handbrake - Best for beginners, intuitive interface, reads ISOs and discs.
    3. MKVToolNix - Only because Matroska is my favourite container. Seriously, it's the most versatile container I've worked with, and MKVToolNix is the fastest, and simplest software suites I use to work with them. You can rip from DVDs, Blu-Rays, existing files, extract individual audio/video/subtitle streams and also load/edit/add chapters to/from an existing MKV file without re-encoding it. Matroska isn't supported everywhere yet (God only knows why) so be careful before you re-encode all your movies.
    4. VirtualDub / VirtualDubMod - Haven't used it much, except for some specific taks. Heavily dependant on AVI files, and is most useful when you know how to script in AVISynth. Probably the easiest way to reverse a video and add filters to preiview how the video looks before encoding.
    5. AVISynth - Extremely useful, once you get the hang of it. Inbuilt container support is still not as good as I'd like, but you can get it working with usually any file with a few tweaks/3rd party libs.
    6. AnyVideoConverter - An old favourite. Very intuitive.

    III. Playing Audio/Video Files
    1. VLC - Plays almost any media file you can throw at it, Can occasionally play broken/incomplete files, not a system hog, Live streamer/recorder, file converter/ripper(?), inbuilt Video/Audio/Subtitle effects/filters/synchronization, inbuilt library of codecs (you won't have to install a million different codec packs). And lots more. Subititle support could have been better, but I'm not complaining.
    2. Windows Media Player - 'Huh?' 'What?' No, I haven't gone insane. I rarely use WMP except for when I have DVDs with multi-angle camera shots. WMP is the only one I know that can switch between the different angles seamlessly every time. VLC can't, and I don't want multiple media players hogging space. And with a bit of 3rd party support, it might fit the average user well.
    3. MPC-HC - Another very popular alternative to VLC. This one seemed to be especially popular in the anime fansubbing community for some reason way back when, but now, it's mostly even ground between this and VLC. Voiceforous camps for either still do exist. It is usually used with CCCP. It really depends on what YOU want your media-player to do. Convert files, Stream and save files, and all of that stuff? VLC. Just play all different sorts of files, with enough little tweaks to improve playback (madVR and the likes)? MPC-HC. If you just need aa media-player, MPC-HC will do.
    4. Winamp - Light, fast, more plugins available than you will ever need (or use), thousands of skins, right from the get go. Stream podcasts, videos, rip CDs losslesly, edit tags, view lyrics (3rd party plugin) and tons more. Another alternative is foobar, but it is honestly a bit too customizable for someone with slight OCD-ish traits like me. In Winamp, all of the major customizations are inbuilt (and increased ten fold with 3rd party plugins).
    5. Foobar2000 - You just get a shell of a player (with most of what you need) when you first download it, but there are an immense (and I mean huge) number of 3rd party plugins available, so basically, the sky is the limit with this one. As I said above, I'm the kind of person who obsesess over configurable knick-knacks and stuff in software, so definitely not for me, if I don't want to spend multple hours trying out ALL the plugins.... but it may appeal to your tastes!

    IV. DVD/Blu-Ray tools
    1. DAEMON Tools Lite - DVD/Blu-Ray images/ISO/mds/etc., maker/reader/player. Goodbye region protection.
    2. DVD Decrypter - Lifesaver. I repeat. Fricken' lifesaver. Removes encryption/region-protection/
    Originally posted by Wikipedia
    3. IMGburn - I have others, such as InfraRecorder, but this is by far the one with the best and most features.
    4. VobSub - Rip stubborn subtitles from DVDs

    Miscellaneous
    1. MuseScore - Free scorewriter, music composition & notation program
    3. MediaInfo - The one I use and recommend. Provides a host of information about a file, including codecs , stream sizes, encoding dates, tag data, programs used, bitrates and much more with exactly two right-clicks. Can be integrated into the Windows tool tip (the little box with info that pops up when you hover over a file). Pro-tip - Use the HTML view for the most detailed info.
    2. GSpot - Do not Google for GSpot (NSFW). Or maybe do it. IDK. Tells you what codec a file uses, and maybe some more info.
    4. Sherlock - The Codec Detective - From their site- Helps to determine the codecs installed on computer and check to see if any of the codecs are broken.
    5. CCCP Insurgent - Tells you what codecs and codec packs you currently have installed on your computer.

    P.S. If this post helped you, feel free to press the Like button! It should be at the bottom left corner of the post. If it isn't visible (it's a known bug), have a look at thedifferent workarounds available.

    Feel free to add your own favourites/suggestions.
    Last edited by Roquefort; March 8, 2015, 06:45 AM. Reason: Suggestions noted :)

  • #2
    Thanks! But you forgot . . . . . . Internet Explorer :p
    No,its perfect as is but some colour won't hurt.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for the post man very useful list :)

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Numbing1337 View Post
        Thanks for the post man very useful list :)
        Glad it helped :)

        Comment


        • #5
          [MENTION=251344]Roquefort[/MENTION]

          You might wanna add Adobe Audition to "Music Production/Creation and Audio Editing".
          You can record, edit, and create audio content with an amazing toolset containing waveform, spectral display, and multitrack.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by The_Newbie View Post
            @Roquefort

            You might wanna add Adobe Audition to "Music Production/Creation and Audio Editing".
            You can record, edit, and create audio content with an amazing toolset containing waveform, spectral display, and multitrack.
            I only wrote about free to use software. Many people here are not professionals, so they are going to be looking for something free they can use. As for the professionals or enthusiasts, they probably don't need a guide anyway :)
            Updated the topic title to reflect that.

            Comment


            • #7
              Just to give a heads up: Adobe Premiere Pro 2.0 and Audition 3.0, along with all Adobe CS2 products, are free downloads on the Adobe website (http://helpx.adobe.com/creative-suit...downloads.html). The only requirement is the registration of a free Adobe ID.

              Comment


              • #8
                I recommend Any Video Converter. I really enjoy it and it does so many formats including tons of mobiles that it is a handy tool to have. Link. Great post +Rep [MENTION=251344]Roquefort[/MENTION]

                Comment


                • #9
                  It's a good list. But you're missing MPC-HC and Foobar2000. :(





                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by HeavensRedeemer View Post
                    It's a good list. But you're missing MPC-HC and Foobar2000. :(
                    I did list Foobar as an alternative in the Winamp section, but for someone like me, so many options can sometimes get tiring to choose from. Winamp will usually suffice someone just wants a good media-player. Foobar is very good for people who can handle it.

                    And regarding MPC-HC, I honestly think there's not much of a difference between it and VLC player-wise. Both have inbuilt libs, play almost all formats, and are free. Interface-wise, I think VLC is a bit more intuitive for non-savvy people.

                    Updated list.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Flagger View Post
                      I recommend Any Video Converter. I really enjoy it and it does so many formats including tons of mobiles that it is a handy tool to have. Link. Great post +Rep @Roquefort
                      D'oh *slaps forehead* Of-course! It's been such a long time since I did any video work, I absolutely forgot about that program! Thanks for the reminder. Added.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Roquefort View Post
                        D'oh *slaps forehead* Of-course! It's been such a long time since I did any video work, I absolutely forgot about that program! Thanks for the reminder. Added.
                        Made me laugh out loud bro, I could hear the Homer.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Very useful, thank you.

                          I would like to add some other useful tools like tsMuxeR (mux/demux TS, M2TS, BR), eac3to (convert audio tracks from/to AC3, TrueHD, PCM, DTS, DTS-HD) and DVDshrink (very old and classic tool but yet effective for DVD copying)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            You can think about portable apps using as well. Like PortableApps.com - Portable software for USB, portable, and cloud drives

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Roquefort View Post
                              This is a work in progress, so check back once a few weeks for new stuff!
                              Do your registry a favour, and get portable versions of software you will use occasionally/once-a-while/never.
                              Last updated - 08 March, 2015

                              I. Music Production/Creation and Audio Editing

                              1. Psycle Modular Music Creation Studio - Interface takes some time to get used to, one of the best, actually 'free' ones out there.
                              2. LMMS - Intuitive interface, best for a beginner. My favourite.
                              3. Audacity - Mainly for editing clips, podcasts and audio instead of music creation. Absolutely love it (no sarcasm). My biggest mistake would be making my first remix with this. Never again.
                              4. Hydrogen - Beat maker, Drum Machine.
                              Virtual MIDI Piano Keyboard - Turn your keyboard into a MIDI Piano. If you want to start producing music seriously, get a cheap real MIDI keyboard, (and please learn music theory. It does help)
                              5. Mu.LAB - Not for me, but may appeal to you.

                              II. Video Editing/Post processing/Creation
                              1. AVIdemux - Despite the name, it works on most containers/files. Convert, split, join and enhance files. The best choice for intermediate/advanced people. Even beginners, if you're a quick learner and aren't afraid to break anything ;)
                              2. Handbrake - Best for beginners, intuitive interface, reads ISOs and discs.
                              3. MKVToolNix - Only because Matroska is my favourite container. Seriously, it's the most versatile container I've worked with, and MKVToolNix is the fastest, and simplest software suites I use to work with them. You can rip from DVDs, Blu-Rays, existing files, extract individual audio/video/subtitle streams and also load/edit/add chapters to/from an existing MKV file without re-encoding it. Matroska isn't supported everywhere yet (God only knows why) so be careful before you re-encode all your movies.
                              4. VirtualDub / VirtualDubMod - Haven't used it much, except for some specific taks. Heavily dependant on AVI files, and is most useful when you know how to script in AVISynth. Probably the easiest way to reverse a video and add filters to preiview how the video looks before encoding.
                              5. AVISynth - Extremely useful, once you get the hang of it. Inbuilt container support is still not as good as I'd like, but you can get it working with usually any file with a few tweaks/3rd party libs.
                              6. AnyVideoConverter - An old favourite. Very intuitive.

                              III. Playing Audio/Video Files
                              1. VLC - Plays almost any media file you can throw at it, Can occasionally play broken/incomplete files, not a system hog, Live streamer/recorder, file converter/ripper(?), inbuilt Video/Audio/Subtitle effects/filters/synchronization, inbuilt library of codecs (you won't have to install a million different codec packs). And lots more. Subititle support could have been better, but I'm not complaining.
                              2. Windows Media Player - 'Huh?' 'What?' No, I haven't gone insane. I rarely use WMP except for when I have DVDs with multi-angle camera shots. WMP is the only one I know that can switch between the different angles seamlessly every time. VLC can't, and I don't want multiple media players hogging space. And with a bit of 3rd party support, it might fit the average user well.
                              3. MPC-HC - Another very popular alternative to VLC. This one seemed to be especially popular in the anime fansubbing community for some reason way back when, but now, it's mostly even ground between this and VLC. Voiceforous camps for either still do exist. It is usually used with CCCP. It really depends on what YOU want your media-player to do. Convert files, Stream and save files, and all of that stuff? VLC. Just play all different sorts of files, with enough little tweaks to improve playback (madVR and the likes)? MPC-HC. If you just need aa media-player, MPC-HC will do.
                              4. Winamp - Light, fast, more plugins available than you will ever need (or use), thousands of skins, right from the get go. Stream podcasts, videos, rip CDs losslesly, edit tags, view lyrics (3rd party plugin) and tons more. Another alternative is foobar, but it is honestly a bit too customizable for someone with slight OCD-ish traits like me. In Winamp, all of the major customizations are inbuilt (and increased ten fold with 3rd party plugins).
                              5. Foobar2000 - You just get a shell of a player (with most of what you need) when you first download it, but there are an immense (and I mean huge) number of 3rd party plugins available, so basically, the sky is the limit with this one. As I said above, I'm the kind of person who obsesess over configurable knick-knacks and stuff in software, so definitely not for me, if I don't want to spend multple hours trying out ALL the plugins.... but it may appeal to your tastes!

                              IV. DVD/Blu-Ray tools
                              1. DAEMON Tools Lite - DVD/Blu-Ray images/ISO/mds/etc., maker/reader/player. Goodbye region protection.
                              2. DVD Decrypter - Lifesaver. I repeat. Fricken' lifesaver. Removes encryption/region-protection/
                              3. IMGburn - I have others, such as InfraRecorder, but this is by far the one with the best and most features.
                              4. VobSub - Rip stubborn subtitles from DVDs

                              Miscellaneous
                              1. MuseScore - Free scorewriter, music composition & notation program
                              3. MediaInfo - The one I use and recommend. Provides a host of information about a file, including codecs , stream sizes, encoding dates, tag data, programs used, bitrates and much more with exactly two right-clicks. Can be integrated into the Windows tool tip (the little box with info that pops up when you hover over a file). Pro-tip - Use the HTML view for the most detailed info.
                              2. GSpot - Do not Google for GSpot (NSFW). Or maybe do it. IDK. Tells you what codec a file uses, and maybe some more info.
                              4. Sherlock - The Codec Detective - From their site- Helps to determine the codecs installed on computer and check to see if any of the codecs are broken.
                              5. CCCP Insurgent - Tells you what codecs and codec packs you currently have installed on your computer.

                              P.S. If this post helped you, feel free to press the Like button! It should be at the bottom left corner of the post. If it isn't visible (it's a known bug), have a look at thedifferent workarounds available.

                              Feel free to add your own favourites/suggestions.
                              I see that you didn't list my favourite music and video player, which is SmPlayer :)

                              Comment

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