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VLC Media Player Tricks

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VLC media player icon
There are a lot of media players you could choose from, with lots of new features and marked changes in their interface and design and we are going to discuss about the best of them Video Lan's VLC. At this time, almost everyone knows about Video-Lan's VLC media player. There are a lot of things there, You don't know about VLC, I could bet on this ;)
We would recommend you to use Video-Lan's VLC media player, if you haven't used it in the past and are looking for a decent media solution. Those who are already using it would be surprised to know these features and might comment they really do deserve recognition.
Lots of people would prefer VLC as their default media player. If you're just using it to watch movies and listen songs then you're really missing something and only using a tiny fraction of it's capabilities.
Believe it or not, it's a box full of tricks. You've to just open it's lid to make your life easier.

VLC media player


  • It’s simple to use.
  • Fast to load.
  • Never gives any codec or crash problems, things of the past :D .
  • It could play almost each and every format that exists.
  • It requires minimum system resources.
  • Runs on all major platforms Windows / Mac / Linux and some others too.
  • Wide Variety of features.


  • Design is so so.
  • Buttons are Jazzed Up.
Here, on Unique Trick we're going to list some time-saving,cool, enjoyable and mischievous features that would help you to get most out of VLC and some hidden tricks to optimize your VLC media player experience to the fullest.

Tricks and Tips for VLC

  1. Convert/Transcode/Resize Videos with VLC

    Convert / Transcode / Resize videos with VLC
    There are huge amount of conversion softwares available out there, but you could Convert/Transcode/Resize your videos with VLC too, then why download a new conversion software if we already have one. Why you would convert media files ? the Answer is,You might want to make the video suitable for your Android phone or any other reason.

      Steps to transcode the video:

    1. Open VLC media player.
    2. Go to Media at the top right corner then click on Convert / Save or directly press Ctrl+R.
    3. In the file tab add the file(s) which you want to convert/transcode.
    4. Click on Convert/Save.
    5. New window opens, Click on Browse button and make a new file at any location you want. Select Save as type as the output format.
    6. Make sure that raw input is unchecked
    7. .
    8. In the settings section click on the settings icon after profile drop-down menu.
    9. In new window go to Encapsulation tab to select output format and choose suitable audio and video codecs, you could also add subtitles. Tip:Ogg produces smaller files as compared to other formats.
    10. Click on Save and then start.
    11. VLC would then enter streaming mode, depending on the video, this may take some time. You would be able to see your new video in the specified destination folder once the seek bar reaches the end.

    Follow the same steps to convert any video in VLC media player.
    As we know that media file conatins video stream, audio stream or both. VLC lets us control the both the streams separately i.e., if you are only interested in listening to the music, untick the video check-box under video codec tab and select audio stream under audio codec tab.
    Output file's size could be reduced even further by lowering the bitrate, but it degrades quality.
    So with VLC we can convert media files so as to make a video smaller for a portable device, convert media from an unsupported to a supported format and even, extract audio and video from a media file and save as separate files. This feature is not so famous but we could use it instead of other softwares which are huge and costly.
  2. Screen Trick

    Screen Trick VLC
    • Open VLC media player.
    • Go to media and open Network Stream. Or, Alternatively, Press Ctrl+N.
    • Now type "Screen://" without quotes in the new dialouge box.
    • Click on play and enjoy this trick.
  3. Watch Youtube Videos in VLC

    Watch youtube videos in VLC
    VLC media player could do almost all the things you could think of doing with a media file, and it includes playing Youtube videos and videos from other sites too. Also, when you play Youtube videos in VLC you can also get rid of all the unwanted disturbances.


    • Open VLC media player.
    • Click on Media and then Open Network Stream. Or, Press Ctrl+N.
    • Now, Paste the link into the text box and click on play.If you want to play youtube videos, link would be like
    It's needless to say that you must have Internet connection for this. This was the answer to the question, How to play Youtube videos in VLC media player ? and your Answer is given above. You'll see how smoothly VLC streams videos.
    For downloading the same video you are streaming Press Ctrl+J copy the location and paste it in your browser's address bar and GO.
  4. Video and Audio Effects.

    Video and audio effects VLC
    What if your video and audi streams are not syncing with each other ? In VLC media player you could fix it with a little tweak. Similarly, you can apply effects to your audio and video, which takes place live.
    Let's see how :
    • Open VLC media player.
    • Click on Tools, then choose Effects and filters from drop down list.Alternatively, Press Ctrl+E. Or, Click on the icon that looks like equalizer, in the playback bar.
    • Click on Audio tab if you want to add Audio effects and similarly for video files.
    • Now play around, make changes and save the settings which suits you best.

    You can change Brightness, Hue,etc. and synchronize audio and video too. You can use it for enhancing dark videos and much more.
  5. Take Snapshots in VLC

    Take Snapshots VLC
    There are a lot of instances while watching a video we want to take a snapshot but, pressing the 'Print Screen' button then opening paint and doing all the cropping, etc. is too tedious for us. But VLC could come handy to us by following simple steps given below:
    • Open VLC.
    • Go to tools.
    • Select Preferences from drop down list. Alternatively, Press Ctrl+P.
    • Go to Video tab and see Video Snapshots section.
    • Enter the directory, prefix, check sequential numbering and choose a format png or jpg. Default format is png.
    • To take a Snapshot Go to video and select snapshot from the drop down menu.Alternatively, use Shift+S to take snapshots.

    To use another button or button combinations for taking snapshots.
    • Go to Tools then select preferences from drop down. Alternatively, Press Ctrl+P.
    • Go to hotkeys tab.
    • Search for Snapshot in the search box.
    • Double click below the Hotkey or Global in front of Take Video Snapshot to change key / key combinations.

  6. Recommended Reading: Best Command Prompt Tricks

  7. Set Video as the Desktop wallpaper

    On mobile platforms like android, you could set videos as your live wallpaper. Then why you couldn't on your Computer. VLC media player is the only player which could let you do this thing. You can replace your desktop wallpaper with any video using Video-Lan's VLC media player.

    Follow these Steps to set video as the desktop wallpaper:

    1. Open Preferences from Tools menu in the menu bar or, Use Hotkey Ctrl+P.
    2. Choose All Settings radio button.
    3. Go to Video -> Output modules.
    4. Select DirectX(DirectDraw) video output module from drop down list.
    5. Restart VLC, Load Video then point to Video menu in the menu bar.
    6. From the drop-down list choose Set as Wallpaper.

    Above steps would set the video you chose as a wallpaper. When everything is done change video output mode back to default and restart VLC.
  8. Overlay a logo on a video

    Here's how you can overlay a logo on a video:
    • Go to preferences via Hotkey Ctrl+P.
    • Choose all under 'Show Settings'.
    • In video section expand Subtitles / OSD.
    • Click on Logo Overlay.
    • Then choose your logo file.
    • Click on Save button.

    You can also change the position of image, time in milliseconds logo will remain at the specified position, animation and all.
  9. Change Jump Settings

    Many a times we want to see a particular scene and or hear a particular dialouge but, when we use jump buttons sometimes it skips more than required. Nevertheless, you can change the jump times and make your life easier.
    You can change it as follows:
    • Press Ctrl+P to go to preferences.
    • In show settings choose 'All'.
    • Go to Interface section and click on Hotkey.
    • Now you can edit the values of various jump sizes like Very Short Jump length, Medium Jump Length, etc.

    You can also use this window to change default hotkey and choose hotkey for functions which don't have hotkey.
  10. Play Image files (*.img, *.iso, etc) and .rar files in VLC

    Play *.img *.iso files in VLC
    VLC can play image and rar files directly you don't need to mount the images on a virtual drive or extract them. Many formats are supported but not all. Open an image file or rar file directly for a video to start playing.
  11. Skins

    VLC supports skins but you don't know a secret, it also supports Winamp 2 and Xmps skins. How to select a skin ?
    • Ue hotkey Ctrl+P to go to preferences.
    • In interface tab see Look and feel section, choose 'Use custom skin' radio button.
    • Select a skin by browsing from the button given below
    • Click on Save.
  12. ASCII playback

    ASCII playback in VLC
    This is an amazing and amusing feature of VLC, but not that much useful. In this mode VLC displays a video in ASCII characters instead of playing it normally. It's a Geek thing :p . How to display a video as ASCII characters ?
    • Go to Preferences, Use hotkey Ctrl+P.
    • In the Video tab choose color ASCII art video output from the Output dropdown menu in display section.
    • Click Save button.
    • Start playing a video and enjoy.
  13. Record your desktop to a file

    Record Desktop to a file VLC
    Yes, you can do this with VLC itself. There's no need of any special software. How to do it ?
    1. Click Media menu and select Convert / Save. Or, Use Ctrl+R.
    2. From Capture Device tab select Desktop from Capture mode box.
    3. Change the frame rate to a bit smaller value and see it appears smooth because the default frame rate here is one frame per second, which is very Grainy.
    4. Click on Convert/Save button.
    5. Set a destination file in destination section.
    6. If you want to see the contents of your desktop in VLC window while recording enable Display the output checkbox.
    7. Adjust resolution and video codec by clicking on the edit button on right of the Profile box. Or, select a profile as it is without editing.
    8. Set resolution as per your needs by using options in Video codec tab, Resolution section. eg, you can use double of your dektop's resolution by typing 2 into the Scale box.
    9. Click Save and Start.
    10. VLC will start recording your desktop. Once done, click on Stop button.
  14. Use Mouse to Play / Pause a video

    Right click and then left click, it's as easy as this if you're so lazy that you don't even want to move your hand here and there :D .
Hope you would enjoy these tricks and learn more about VLC. Leave your suggestions in the comment box below.

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