Video and audio streams in multimedia files are now, in most cases, encoded with special encoding programs (called codecs). This helps to reduce file size while preserving relatively good quality video and sounds. To playback such files, special decoding programs (decoders) are required for each video/audio format used to encode data in these files (e.g. DivX, XviD, H.264, H.265, MP3, AAC etc). Some multimedia players/editors already contain required codecs, while others (e.g. Windows Media Player) use external codecs that need to be installed on your computer separately.
Machete is a lossless video editor that preserves original the quality of audio and video. Editing with Machete does not involve encoding programs (encoders) and this is why no codecs are included in Machete itself. This is what makes Machete "lean" in the first place (the size of the installation package is just a few megabytes) and also minimizes the risks of incompatibility/conflicts with other applications.
Editing with Machete is quick and does not require a powerful computer. However, to enable the viewing and playing of the video and audio being edited; your PC needs to have corresponding decoding programs (decoders, codecs) installed. Machete cannot open and edit a file if the preview function is not disabled due to a missing decoder.
To make sure that all decoders required for playback of ASF, WMV and WMA files are present in your system, we suggest that you visit the official Microsoft website and upgrade to the latest version of Windows Media Player available for your version of Windows.
Finding necessary decoders for AVI, MP4 and FLV files may be a bit trickier, because such files can contain video and audio streams encoded in many different formats (DivX, XviD, On2 VP, MP3, AAC etc). There are several ways to approach this:
1. Find and install a decoder for each required format separately. For example, to edit files encoded in DivX format, you can download the decoder from the official DivX website. This may become tedious and complicated because you would need to find, download and install decoders for many different video and audio formats.
2. Install a universal decoder and encoder for several video and audio formats. As one option, you may consider FFDShow. This freely distributed encoder contains most popular codecs usually required for AVI, MKV and FLV files (and some others). You can check the Wikipedia article on FFDShow for more information.
3. Install a codec pack that includes the most widely used codecs (this would be the most comprehensive solution). However, it may also lead to problems since installing a lot of codecs may cause some programs on your computer to work incorrectly. It is recommended that you install a codec pack only if a universal encoder (such as FFDShow) does not address all your needs. An example of such a codec pack would be the free K-Lite codec pack. You can read more about K-Lite through its Wikipedia entry.
Besides FFDShow and the K-Lite codec pack, there are other universal codec sets that can be downloaded and installed on a PC to enable viewing (and editing) of multimedia files with Machete. Codecs from these codec packs can be used by other multimedia players/editors, such as Windows Media Player and others.
We have tested Machete for compatibility with FFDShow and K-Lite codec pack. The program's compatibility with other codec packs is not guaranteed.