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JVC video camera MOD files not playing in Windows Media Player

Posted on 2007-11-26
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Last Modified: 2013-12-07
I have a newer JVC Everio video camera with HD recording.  I can move the *.MOD files to my son's computer.  Getting them to play is a problem.  They play on my computer seemingly OK.
Both computers use XP Pro.  He used Media Player 11.0 while I use 10.0.
Based on some other posts, I tried changing the file extensions from MOD to mpg and mpeg.  Media Player after opening the video files says "acquiring codec" in the bottom left of the screen and then pops up an error that it can't play the file based on the codec.  I've downloaded two suggested codecs (Stinkys' and DJBCP light).  When installed ,one will show video but not sound.  The second codec does the opposite.  I tried Apple QuickTime, and it didn't work either.
I don't know how a codec that works got on my computer, and my son's doesn't have one.  I would think that a mpeg2 codec would be installed by default in Windows XP.
Next my son wants to use the video files in Windows Movie Maker, and it now complains about codecs too.  I presume if I get on to work properly for Media Player then Movie Maker will follow.
Can someone clarify the codec issues I'm facing and how to find ones that work fully or why the ones I downloaded aren't working properly?
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Question by:twgonder
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by:fredshovel
ID: 20356482
Windows Media Player doesn't come with the MPEG-2 codec installed. And neither does XP. This is because Microsoft is at war with MPEG LA and doesn't want to pay licencing fees, and wants its own codec WMV9 or VC-1 to rule the world. But it's not going to happen.
What could be happening is that the computer that plays the MOD files via WMP may have at some stage installed a WMP compatible plugin. These often come with DVD drives, computer packages, and even software packages. But if you didn't get one of these you version of WMP won't play MPEG-2 files.
Microsoft is very specific about which third party plugins will 'plug' the MPEG-2 codec into WMP.
Here's the list:
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/player/plugins.aspx

Another alternative is to download and install the free VLC player, which will play MPEG-2 files. I'm not sure about support for MOD files though.
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by:fredshovel
ID: 20356498
Also if you want a tip. Uninstall WMP11 -- you don't need this lemon. Then download WMP9 from here:
http://www.download.com/Windows-Media-Player-Windows-XP-/3000-2139_4-10180881.html
Then to get MPEG-2 videos (DVDs included) just download Stinky's codec, which is compatible with WMP9.
http://www.free-codecs.com/download/Stinky_MPEG_2_Codec.htm

This was recently tried here at EE and works ok.

 
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by:twgonder
ID: 20359470
I was up till midnight researching this and much of what I've found out is in line with what you state.  I will try getting rid of WMP11.  I have Cyberlink PowerDVD 4.0 (web update added yesterday to make it current).  It plays the videos fine on my computer.  (The kid doesn't have a DVD drive or player. ) WMP on the other hand, plays distorted with lots of scratchy lines and static.  I presume it uses the Cyberlink codec, but I can't confirm this as it looks like there are several codecs installed, but as usual with MS XP trying to figure out which belongs to what is difficult.  I know you can look at the properties, file page in WMP after playing a file to see the codec used.  At least two different ones show for MPEG clips.

Thanks for the links.  CyberLink offers a $14.95 solution that may beat their $49.95 upgrade price (and that product may not be compatible), but I'm not sure if I would then have 2 (or more) codecs installed for MPEG-2 and if that would be bad (some posters elsewhere state it would be).

Thanks, and I'll report back on the results.  The ultimate issue is getting the clips to work with WXP Movie Maker.
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fredshovel earned 500 total points
ID: 20360926
I don't think the XP version of Windows Movie Maker handles High Definition -- you have to get Vista and it version of WMM. Personally I'd rather get smallpox. Thre's not much point in shooting in 1080 x 1440 (HDV spec -- not 1080 x 1920) and then having to edit and save in Standard Definition.
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/features/details/moviemaker.mspx
Rather than spend the Cyperlink money -- just to get WMP going -- or even mess with Vista and WMM, why not use another solution?
Ulead Video Studio 11 PLUS, deals with HDV and will play anything that you can throw at it -- even MPEG-2 and the new H.264 MPEG-4. And it's very easy to use. USD$129.99
There's a free trial here:
http://www.ulead.com/vs/runme.htm 
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Author Comment

by:twgonder
ID: 20361242
STUPID ME!  Thinking that HDV would be even remotely handled by MS, WMP, WMM, Windows updates  or the CyberLink PowerDVD SE software I just sprung $15 for.  (BTW, PowerDVD SE installed without any entries in the Start Menu.  Running the exe directly errors out that the 30 day trial expired even though I never used the trial, installed from the purchase download link and entered the serial number-just a warning to others.)

Which all goes to show that the more I need to know the less I want to know.  Will check out the ulead option.
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Author Closing Comment

by:twgonder
ID: 31411128
Good observations and advice.  Downloaded trial, still doesn't allow WMP to play the files by itself though, even at std. resolution.
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Expert Comment

by:fredshovel
ID: 20482294
Just FYI CyberLink PowerDVD is supposed to come with a pretty good video editing software called Power Director. Did you get this? If so it might be a good idea to utilise it as a video editor -- I think V6 handles HD -- maybe you could update.
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