When you play a video in QuickTime, sometimes you will only to hear the sound, but see no picture. The QuickTime screen will be grey or white. This happens to AVI and WMV files most often, and sometimes even MOV or M4V files exported from Mac’s apps like QuickTime Pro, iMovie or Final Cut! And upgrading to Lion can also make your files suddenly “unplayerable” .
Why QuickTime plays audio but no video? The most common reason is that the video file you try to play in QuickTime is using a codec that QuickTime can’t read. So the solution is to install the missing codec on your Mac. But codec world is quite complicated, even for the pros. First, you might not know which codec is missing, and the missing codec might not have a Mac version (this is rare, don’t panic). For the rest of us, install a third-party player or plug-in is the easiest resolution.
Perian is the best FREE QuickTime plug-in to tackle the problem. It provides native seamless support for AVI format and many other video formats like: DIVX, FLV, MKV, GVI, VP6, and VFW. With Perian installed, QuickTime will play AVI files like a charm, and in high video quality.
Note: If you are using Lion, and the latest version of Perian doesn’t work for you, downgrade to the previous version 1.2.2. Uninstall Perian on your Mac and then reinstall the 1.2.2 verison. Make sure you don’t upgrade to the latest version during the installation process. Also, uncheck “Automatically Update” box in the Perian preferences.
VLC play is a free and open source cross-platform multimedia player. It plays almost anything, from video & audio files, discs (DVD, CD, VCD, Blu-Ray), webcams and streams. You can definitely use VLC player as AVI player for Mac.
MPlayer plays pretty much all files: MPEG/VOB, AVI, Ogg/OGM, VIVO, ASF/WMA/WMV, QT/MOV/MP4, RealMedia, Matroska, NUT, NuppelVideo, FLI, YUV4MPEG, FILM, RoQ, PVA files, supported by many native, XAnim, and Win32 DLL codecs. You can watch VideoCD, SVCD, DVD, 3ivx, DivX 3/4/5, WMV and even H.264 movies.
If the above solution does not work for you, there’s one workaround you can use. Not perfect, but workable. Convert your files to MP4 or Apple supported format using a Video Converter. It takes a while to convert files, but the good is that you can play your files and you can put your videos and movies on your mobile devices, say iPad.