Updated 02/01/2013Home » Guides » Video Playback Troubleshooting Guide

Video Playback Troubleshooting Guide

Solutions and answers to the most common AVI and video playback issues.

Welcome to the DivXLand.org Video Troubleshooting guide. Here you will find some solutions to the most common video playback situations and issues. All needed software mentioned here can be found at the Software section of this site.

Please note; since the DivX codec bundled players (all versions) have resulted to be very unstable and unreliable managing all media types, you should use a proper player from this section.

Remember that codec packs install decoders only, this means they are unable to encode or recompress media. Please install the required codecs separately for audio and video edition.

Troubleshooting topics

1. I receive a message such as 'cannot find appropriate decompressor'

This only happens when the needed audio or video decoder is not installed on your system. To get all the most common audio and video codecs, install the DivX Total Pack. You could also install the required codecs separately as well.

To view the codecs used in you AVI file, open it with GSpot. Additionally, you can locate the required codecs accordingly to the FOURCC code returned.

2. The movie plays but there is no video

If you are using more than one display device, jump to this answer.

Make sure you have installed the proper video codecs. To view the codecs used in your AVI file, open it with GSpot. Additionally, you can locate the required codecs accordingly to the FOURCC code returned by GSpot.

If you have all the required codecs or filters, try changing the color depth of your Windows desktop (right click on desktop, select Properties, then Settings tab). Recommended setting is 32 bits.

If you are using Windows Media Player 6.4, select Options from the View menu. There you can change the Hardware Acceleration. For older systems it's recommended to keep it in None, and to use a desktop resolution of 640x480.

3. The movie plays but there is no audio

You have to install the specific audio codec that your movie requires to playback the audio stream. Install the audio codecs included in DivX Total Pack to get the required codecs, or find out the required codec by opening the AVI file with GSpot; then only install the proper codec separately.

4. Audio is not synchronized with video

We will assume the video file is copied to your hard disk, and it's not being played from a CD-ROM drive, a Local Area Network, or any other different method. That can cause additional problems.

Also, make sure your machine meets the minimum system requirements.

Possible Solution 1:

If you have performed any video conversion/encoding process with the file and the problem appeared with the resulting file, proceed this way: Open the original video in VD and go to File > Save WAV. The audio stream will be extracted to an external WAV file. Now, proceed with your conversion process that previously caused the audio problem, using the Direct stream copy mode for audio. Open the obtained video file and go to Audio > WAV Audio, and select the WAV file extracted earlier. Now save this file with Direct stream copy mode under both Video and Audio menus and the resulting file should have the audio still synchronized.

Possible Solution 2:

Maybe the entire audio stream is incorrectly positioned. If sound is always desynchronized at any position of the video, you will have to change the entire audio position. Open the movie in VirtualDub and in the Video and Audio menus, make sure to select Direct stream copy. Then select Interleaving from the Audio menu. In Audio skew correction you will have to enter how many milliseconds the audio will be moved. (1 sec=1000 ms). Insert a minus (-) symbol before the number to have the audio earlier, or the value alone to have the audio later. Click OK and you will be able to preview the video right there. After you have corrected the audio, save the file by selecting Save as AVI from the File menu.

Possible Solution 3:

If the above solutions don't not apply to your case, then let's find out if your file is in 44.1 KHz or 48 KHz. Open the file in VDUB and then select File Information from the File menu. If at the Audio stream section you see:

  • Sampling rate: 48000 Hz, and you use to have problems with 48000 Hz files, then you should downsample it to 44100 Hz, because not all audio cards can manage 48000 Hz audio properly. To do so, you'll need to use an MP3 codec. In the Video menu, select Direct stream copy. In the Audio menu, select Full processing mode and then Conversion. There select 44100 Hz (when available, make sure to chose a CBR mode). Again under Audio, select Compression, and chose the audio quality desired such as 128 kbps 44100 Hz. Now save the video file from the File>Save as AVI menu.
  • Sampling rate: 44100 Hz, then your sound hardware should be able to handle the audio from the file correctly. The problem should be fixed using the 1st or the 2nd solution, so make sure to try them.
5. I can't open the video file, or there's something wrong with it

Ensure you have installed the required codecs by checking out answer number 1. If this doesn't solve the problem, try opening the file with VirtualDub, AVI Preview or DivFix. DivFix can rebuild the index of corrupted files, but it doesn't completely fix all kind of errors. To use DivFix, open the video with it and click Check Errors; after it's done, select Rebuild Index and that's it.

: Make sure to have a backup copy of the file before doing this.

6. Video freezes in several locations

Then you should install a filter called DivX AntiFreeze, or either check the file with a program called DivX Repair. This is of course valid for DivX compressed files only.

7. I want to split the video file

This process is explained now at the Video Edition guide provided by DivXLand.org.

8. I want to preview an incomplete AVI file

You can open incomplete video files with AVI Preview easily. Notice the AVI file will require to have the beginning/index complete, otherwise it is impossible to preview it.

9. Video is upside down

You probably have installed the DivX G400 filter and / or the Bicubic Resizer Filter with Nimo codec pack, so uninstall it at the Windows Add/Remove Programs dialog. Then install the DivX Total pack or the required codecs separately.

If you have installed the DirectVobSub filter with the DivX Total Pack, you can force the video flipping from the filter's icon near the clock during the video playback. To make this icon appear, you must configure the codec to auto load itself always.

10. I receive a 'FOURCC code 0' related error

The FOURCC code defines the codec needed to playback the file. Since the code 0 does not exists, this type of files are fake or severely corrupted. You should simply delete the file that gives this error, and don't really trust the file source in the future.

11. I receive a 'XVID' related error

This means that your movie has been encoded with the XviD codec. You can easily convert the file header to DivX with a small tool called WinX2D as explained here, or simply install the XviD codec.

12. Video does not show on secondary display

This solution for viewing video on several displays requires the usage of Media Player Classic. During playback, go to View > Options and select the Output section:

  • The red modes normally won't be able to clone video.
  • The green mode (VMR9 windowed) will show video on all displays.
  • The blue modes will also show video in cloned screens, but they will also show the subtitle stream if available. When using an external subtitler filter, both subs will be shown simultaneously, therefore, you should disable either the internal or the external filter.
Restart the player for this setting to take effect.

If you cannot use Media Player Classic, you'll have to disable one of the displays in order to show the video in the other one.

13. I receive an 'improper VBR audio' error in VirtualDub

The following VBR audio error message appears when opening a media file in VirtulDub, causing audio/video desynch after the file encoding.

Only VirtualDubMod allows to ignore this issue with the No button.


This message appears when opening video files with variable bitrate (VBR) audio streams. The AVI file format specification does not support VBR audio streams natively, therefore, despite of being able to playback such files properly, problems appear when trying to work with the audio streams of these files, such as being unable to properly encode or convert the audio stream(s) from the file.


The solution to this problem has 3 steps and will permanently fix errors in the audio stream from your file:
  1. Completely extract the audio stream into an uncompressed WAV file (keeping the original audio format)
  2. Convert the created WAV file to a constant bitrate (CBR) MP3 file
  3. Finally, replace the original audio stream from the media file with the fixed MP3 encoded file
All this can be done with VirtualDubMod as explained here:

Open the video file in VirtualDubMod, and answer No to the question regarding VBR audio. Under the Video menu, select Direct stream copy. Go to Streams > Stream list.

If your media file is an MKV container file, additional audio or subtitle streams will appear here.

In the streams window, right click on the audio stream to extract and select Full processing mode in the popup menu, then right click again and select Conversion. Configure the conversion options as shown below:

These settings are 100% compatible with the audio format required for VCD.

Click OK and then Save WAV to extract the audio into an uncompressed WAV file. This can require up to 1.2 GB of free space for an audio length of 2 hours. Notice that you will need to have installed the required audio decompressor to properly extract certain audio formats such as AC3.

Once extracted the audio, we must replace the file's audio stream with the extracted WAV file, and compress it using the MPEG Layer-3 codec (constant bitrate). All this can be done in one step:

Back to Streams > Stream list, disable the current audio stream by double clicking it. Click Add and choose the previously extracted WAV file. Right click on this new audio stream and select Full processing mode. Once again right click on it, and select Compression.

The audio codec selection window will show up. Chose the MPEG Layer 3 codec and a bitrate value between 96 and 256 kbps at 44100 Hz, remember a higher bitrate will increase the output file size.

Finally click OK on both windows and go to File > Save as AVI. If your original file was an AVI, make sure to select the AVI item from the file types drop-down box, if it was an MKV or OGM with additional streams, select either OGM or MKV to preserve all the audio and subtitle streams.

Ensure you have selected the Direct stream copy mode at the Video menu, since we must only recompress the audio stream(s) and not the video.

14. Minimum system requirements for DivX playback

These are the minimum specifications recommended by DivX.com:

For Windows:
  • Windows 98 or higher.
  • Pentium II 450 processor or equivalent.
  • 64 MB or more of RAM.
  • 8 MB or higher video card.
  • Minimum 24-bit desktop color when using Windows Media Player.
  • DirectX 7 or higher is suggested for best video performance.

For Linux:
  • Pentium II 450 processor or equivalent.
  • 64 MB or more of RAM.
  • 8 MB or higher video card.
For Mac:
  • 400Mhz G3 or faster
  • Video acceleration card with QuickTime support (ATI, NVIDIA)
  • QuickTime 5 or later
  • Mac OS 8.6 or later (includes OS X)
  • CarbonLib 1.2.6 or later
These requirements are measured for full-screen (640x480) video decoding with playback quality and post-processing settings at their lowest levels. Full playback quality and post-processing requires at least 20% more CPU power, and at least twice the amount ot RAM.


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