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Top 8 HLS Players for Windows & Mac to Play HLS Files

Posted by Kaylee Wood | Last update: July 16, 2020

HLS protocol supported Apps or websites allow M3U8 files to be played on their servers, such as YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and so on, but if you want to open the HLS video on a desktop browser, it could be very difficult. Problems like video format cannot be recognized, the video played without audio, audio is not synced with video, file read to be empty, etc., but what's worse is that there is no way to solve these problems on desktop browsers. Why is it so hard to find ways to play HLS protocol video? Should I turn to look for an HLS media player? Here are the straightforward reasons and easiest solutions for you to solve the problems.

5KPlayer – Best Free HLS Player for Windows 10 & macOS

To solve the problem of HLS streaming won’t play with online HLS player, 5KPlayer with built-in HLS protocol support has the ability to access any .m3u8 playlist file and .ts segment files. Just copy the URL of the index file, 5KPlayer can assemble the sequence to allow the continued video display to users in few seconds. You do not need to install any other extensions, add-ons, or codec packs to go through an intricate procedure, this light-weight media player is your simplest solution to view live videos.

SWF Player

TOP 8 HLS players for Windows and Mac

No.1 5KPlayer

Platform: Windows, Mac

5KPlayer is a powerful and professional multimedia player, as its name, with the ability to activate GPU acceleration for video decoding and encoding that is featured in playing UHD 4K, 5K and even 8K videos. Besides, it has many other bonus functions like AirPlay screen mirroring, DLNA video music streaming, online video downloading, as well as HLS supporting. 5KPlayer has built-in with almost all video and audio codec support, including playing video in MP4, MKV, AV1, MOV, WMV, FLV, AVI, MPG, MPEG, MTS, M2TS, AVCHD, VOB, DAV, DAT, WebM, OGG, ASF, 3GP, RMVB, MOD and music in MP3, AAC, FLAC, etc. Just input the valid URL of HLS video, and 5KPlayer will read the data to integrate the video clips and display it to users.

How to open an URL of HLS video with 5KPlayer?
1. Download and install this best free player – 5KPlayer, and launch it on your PC.
2. Click on the "Live" icon on the user interface.
3. Copy the URL you want to open and paste it on the "Input a URL" box, then click on "Play".

You can obviously see the entrance of the URL stream and play M3U8 video couldn't be easier.

Best SWF Player

Although all the player mentioned above is able to play HLS protocol video, we still recommend you the best 5KPlayer to use. Except for 5KPlayer and VLC, the other players are out of update for pretty a long time (at least one year or more), that means the known bugs cannot be fixed and the new codecs support cannot be added.

VLC is a good choice though, it is not professional in UHD video playback, and there are too many complains about 4K video stutter, choppy and crash, if you want to stream UHD video, 5KPlayer does the better job. No matter you want to play HLS streaming video online or save it to your local drive, this best free HLS player helps you to work it out. Download and try 5KPlayer now!

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