3Nity Media Player adds an easy-to-use GUI to MPlayer | Download Product Review - CNET Download.com

3Nity Media Player adds an easy-to-use GUI to MPlayer

Use MPlayer's engine with an attractive user interface in this freeware media player.

With so many freeware media players to choose from, finding one that's best for your needs starts with features. Nearly all of the popular media players are great performers; what sets a given player apart from the competition? Is it the ability to play the most obscure file types, or numerous skins, or the best playlist manager? What 3Nity Media Player offers is an attractive, easy-to-use GUI for MPlayer, the open source media player, and MPUI, the tool that makes MPlayer a versatile Windows program. Like MPlayer, 3Nity is highly comprehensive, incorporating all the codecs and other moving parts in a single executable; this makes it supereasy to use without sacrificing any of MPlayer's advantages, such as the ability to play nearly every media file. Better still, 3Nity lets you configure MPlayer's advanced settings, including deinterlace and postprocessing, without using the Command Line. However, the Command Line option remains, as does the ability to add any features to this open-source freeware you can program. In addition, 3Nity Media Player also supports drag-and-drop and includes the ability to create self-playing DivX CDs via a special autorun.inf file.

MPlayer's default interface has an attractive two-tone fade finish, with the Linux penguin displayed in the main window. There's only so much you can do with media player controls beyond designing an efficient layout, and 3Nity's is commendably clean, but it's nice-looking, too, in a subtle way. The separate, matching Playlist is simple, with Move Up and Move Down arrows, Shuffle and Repeat, and other basic features, with none of the bloat of some well-known competitors. It has some useful features that some players omit, such as TV/Capture Card capability, and you can even open MPlayer's output in a separate window.

So how does 3Nity Media Player perform? Quite well, thanks to MPlayer's video playback capabilities. As for 3Nity's contribution, the player strikes a nice balance between flexibility and ease of use. We played a variety of video and audio files with good results. We'd like to see a proper Help file, and maybe skins or a customizable look.

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