Seven Unknown Tricks with VLC

VLC is by far the best free media player. This cross-platform tool is packed with incredible features, some of which you may not even realize exist.

VLC, music, video, play

VLC Media Player, also known as VideoLan Client Media Player, has come a long way since its humble beginnings. The app now has things like Chromecast support and 360-degree video views. This flexible, small, open source player can handle any media file you give it.

VLC Media Player has 3,5 billion downloads. Perhaps the secret of its longevity is its modular design, which allows it to adapt, adding new features to always be in the forefront. There are some "secret" features that you may not have noticed and that we will explore in this article.

1. Use VLC as a video downloader for YouTube

There are several websites that can help to Download Free YouTube Videos | But few know that VLC actually has this feature built in. It's not that simple to do with just one click, but it works.

a. Click Media> Open Network Transmission (or alternatively type Ctrl + N).
b. Paste the YouTube URL and click Play.
vlc video download 1
c. VLC Media Player starts streaming video. Now, click Tools> Encoder Information.
vlc video download 2
d. At the bottom of the window, you will see a Location box. Copy the large URL to the box and paste it into the address bar of your browser.
e. The browser will now start playing the video file. You can download the video file to your desktop by right-clicking the video and selecting Save Video as. You can also select it record video to VLC .

It does not work on all Youtube videos because it simply cannot play what is locked by their administrators.

2. Convert video to any format

Converting a video to another format is another of our favorite hidden VLC features.

a. From the toolbar, click Media> Convert / Save (alternatively Ctrl + R).
b. In the Open Media dialog box, click the Add button and select the media file you want to convert. Then click the Convert / Save drop-down menu and select Convert.
c. Click the Profile drop-down menu and select the file format in which you want to convert your file.
vlc video convert
d. Click Browse and select a location to save the converted file. Then click Start.

3. VLC as a graphic equalizer for your music

vlc equalizer
You can only use VLC as a video player, but VLC is actually a standalone media player with full sound effects and music playlist support. VLC not only displays the album cover but also offers a very good graphic equalizer.

You can call it with the Ctrl + E shortcut keys (είτε go to Tools> Effects & Filters> Sound Effects). Adjust the audio quality of your media file to the available defaults or optimize it with the Equalizer, Compressor and Spatializer tabs.

4. Turn on Sound Smoothing to protect your ears

vlc normalize volume
The general audio settings are in Preferences. One of the best features of VLC is called Sound Smoothing. This setting helps you adjust the volume of any medium to a constant level and improve the sound quality.

Go to Tools> Preferences> Audio and turn on “Smoothing volume at”. The value you set here adjusts the decibel levels of dialogue, music, explosions, shots, and any other loud noise in the file. Restart VLC after activating the setting to lock it.

5. Play Internet Radio and Podcast in VLC

One of the most underrated features of VLC is definitely its ability to find and play radio stations on the Internet. VLC Player can meet all your audio needs: it can not only broadcast radio, but also play podcasts.

a. Start VLC and open the playlist with Ctrl + L.
b. Make sure the playlist view mode is set to List (go to View> Playlist View Mode> List).
c. In the Internet area, you can browse the two radio servers - Jamendo and Icecast - and select a station by clicking on it.
vlc internet radio

If your favorite internet radio station is not listed, use the station's URL to broadcast via VLC. Go to Multimedia> Open Network Broadcast. Enter the URL and press Play to listen.
You can manage your favorite podcasts through the same Playlist interface. To play podcast in VLC:

a. Go to the playlist and, in the Internet section, select Podcasts.
b. Once the cursor hovers over the Podcast section, click the plus sign.
c. Copy and paste the RSS feed URL of the podcast you want to listen to and click OK. The podcast will be added to the sidebar and you can select any episode you like.

6. Loop a section of a video or audio file

Most media players can play an entire video or soundtrack. With VLC, you can also loop a specific piece of a media file.

a. Open a video or audio file with VLC. Go to View> Advanced Controls.
b. Now, a few more buttons will appear above the normal play and stop controls.
vlc loop
c. To start the loop from a specific part of the video, move the playback head to the part of the media where the loop should start (Point A).
d. Click the loop button once. The "A" mark on the button will turn red. To complete the loop, drag the video to the end point and click the same button again. You will see both points A and B of the button are red.
e. Now, play the video and the section will loop. Click the loop button again if you want to turn it off.

7. Add features with VLC add-ons and VLC extensions

For everyday use, the default VLC feature suite may be more than enough. If you are looking for improved functionality, however, there is a whole list of add-ons that you can install alongside the program. Remember, VLC has a huge open source community behind it. Its fanatical users have created extensions, skins, playlist analyzers and other tools, accessible worldwide.

These extensions are more "secret" features that can be added to the player, such as tools to help you search for subtitles, for example.

a. Visit her VLC add-ons page and browse what is available.
b. Click the Download button on each add-on page and download the ZIP file. Export the file. (VLC add-ons use the LUA extension.)
c. Place the LUA files in this Windows directory:
C:\Users\NAME\AppData\Roaming\vlc\lua\extensions folder.
d. Restart VLC. You can access all your installed extensions from the View menu.

Some of the best VLC extensions are:
Resume Media
Moments' Tracker
Intro and Credits Skipper
TuneIn Radio
Info Crawler

VLC is full of incredible features to try
There is no doubt that VLC Media Player is one of the best tools on the internet. It can handle almost any video file you can imagine and is full of great features.

Customizing your VLC experience has never been easier or more exciting. No matter what you need to do with a video or audio file, if you look it up a bit in VLC Player you will definitely find the way.

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