What is H.264 Format and How to Play H.264 on PC/Mac?

H.264 / AVC / MPEG-4 Part 10 (Advanced Video Coding) is a standard for video compression.

H.264 / AVC is the newest standard codec oriented motion-compensation. This codec standard developed by the ITU-T Video Coding Experts Group (VCEG) together with the ISO / IEC Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG), and is a partnership effort known as the Joint Video Team (JVT). H.264 standard, ITU-T and ISO / IEC MPEG-4 AVC (formally, ISO / IEC 14496-10 - MPEG-4 Part 10 Advanced Video Coding) developed together so that they have identical technical content. H.264 is used in applications such as Blu-ray Disc, videos from YouTube and the iTunes Store, DVB broadcast, direct-broadcast satellite television services, cable television services, and real-time video conferencing.

The purpose of the standard H.264 / AVC is capable of providing good video quality slightly lower prices than the previous standards (eg half or less the bit rate of MPEG-2 H.263, or MPEG-4 Part 2), without increasing the complexity of design so much so it would be impractical or too expensive to implement.

An additional goal is to provide the flexibility to be applied to a variety of applications in a variety of networks and systems, including low and high bit rates, low and high resolution video, broadcast, DVD storage, RTP / IP packet networks, and ITU-T multimedia telephone system.

Standardization of the first version of H.264 / AVC was completed in May 2003. The JVT then developed extensions to the original standard, known as Fidelity Range Extensions (FRExt). This extension enables high-quality video encoding with support precision with increased sharpness of colors and higher resolution, including sampling structures known as Y'CbCr 04:02:02 (YUV = 04:02:02) and Y'CbCr 04:04 4. Several other features are also included in the Fidelity Range Extensions project, such as adaptive change between 4 × 4 and 8 × 8 integer.

H.264 name follows the ITU-T naming convention, where the standard is a member of H.26x VCEG video coding standards; MPEG-4 AVC name relates to the naming convention in ISO / IEC MPEG, where the standard is part 10 of ISO / IEC 14496, which is a standard known as MPEG-4.


H.264 video format has a variety of very wide application that covers all forms of digital video compression of low-level bit application streaming internet, to broadcast HDTV and Digital Cinema applications. By using H.264, save a bit rate of 50% or more. The quality of digital satellite TV, can be achieved at 1.5 Mbit / s, compared to the current operating point of MPEG-2 video at around 3.5 Mbit / s. To ensure compatibility and trouble-free adoption, many standards bodies have changed or menanmbahkan H.264 / AVC video standard to them so that users can use the H.264 / AVC.

Digital Video Broadcast Project (DVB) approved the use of H.264 / AVC for broadcast television in late 2004.

Standards bodies Television System Committee (ATSC) in the United States approved the use of H.264 / AVC for broadcast television in July 2008, although the standard was not used for fixed ATSC broadcasts in the United States.

AVCHD is a high definition recording format designed by Sony and Panasonic that uses H.264 (according to H.264 by adding additional application-specific features).

AVC-Intra is the only intraframe compression format developed by Panasonic.

CCTV (Close Circuit TV) or Video Surveillance has incorporated this technology in a wide range of products. Prior to this technology, the compression format used in DVR Digital Video Record industry generally of low quality in the compressing. With the implementation of H.264 compression technology for video surveillance industry, the video quality to be increased substantially. Starting in 2008, several industry surveillance promote H.264 technology as synonymous with "high-quality video."

How to Play H.264 on PC/Mac?

H.264 is a new video codec standard which can achieve high quality video in relatively low bitrates. You can think it as the "successor" of the existing formats (MPEG2, MPEG-4, DivX, XviD, etc.) as it aims in offering similar video quality in half the size of the formats mentioned before.

Also known as AVC (Advanced Video Coding, MPEG-4 Part 10), H.264 is actually defined in an identical pair of standards maintained by different organizations, together known as the Joint Video Team (JVT). While MPEG-4 Part 10 is an ISO/IEC standard, it was developed in cooperation with the ITU, an organization heavily involved in broadcast television standards. Since the ITU designation for the standard is H.264, you may see MPEG-4 Part 10 video referred to as either AVC or H.264. Both are valid, and refer to the same standard.

1. 5KPlayer

5KPlayer is a 100% free and clean multimedia player, capable of playing any H.264, H.265, MP4, AVI, WMV, MOV, MKV, AVCHD and almost all video formats.

It is compatible with all popular Windows and Mac operating systems, including Windows 10 and Mac OS X 10.11 El Capitan.

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2. VLC Media Player

VLC Media Player is a software (software) diverse players file (file) multimedia, both video and audio in various formats, such as MPEG, DivX, OGG, etc. lain.VLC Media Player can also be used to play DVD, VCD, or CD. VLC Media Player is an open source (open source) and is available for various operating systems. Starting from Microsoft Windows, various Linux distributions, Mac OS, and several other operating systems.

One of the advantages of the most prominent of the VLC Media Player is a complete codec owned. In other words, VLC can play almost all kinds of audio and video files available.

VLC Media Player is a program that is highly portable multimedia player. In short, this program can be used to play multimedia files, be it on a computer, CD or DVD, up for streaming on the internet.

Behind the simple program display, multimedia file player is equipped with a variety of additional features, such as the ability subtitle, tag formats, conversion, filters, skin, can be operated via a variety of interfaces, and many more. In fact, this program can also be used as a server for streaming needs in the local network and the Internet.

Download VLC Media Player HERE

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