With so many different codecs to choose from, it is little wonder that codec packs such as K-Lite prove so popular. If you regularly obtain audio and video files from different sources, you may not always know what format they will be provided in and what codec will have been used to encode them. Rather than just installing every available codec, you may want to take a look at MediaInfo Lite, a free tool that can be used to determine just which codec you need.
The program can be used in one of two ways. It installs as a regular Windows application, but it also features context menu integration. You have the option of launching the main program and then selecting the file you would like to know more about, or you can right click on an audio or video file and select the MediaInfo Lite entry that has been added to the menu.
Whichever route you decide to go down, the result will be the same. You will be provided will a screen packed will all manner of details about the currently selected file. You will be told not only about the name and format of the video, but the precise codec that was used during the encoding process – this is very helpful if you have found that you were unable to play the file and just want to install the necessary codec rather than a full codec pack.
But the tool can be used to discover a wealth of additional information about media files. You can learn about video resolution and audio bitrate as well as checking the frame rate of footage and the overall size and length of a file. All of the data is displayed in a handy, easy to read window, but you can also quickly export it to a text file so you can use it in other programs without the need to manually make a note of anything.
Version 0.7.86 (see full changelog for more):
+ Linux/Mac: more output formats (PBCore, EBUCore, FIMS)
+ FFV1 parsing optimization, avoiding by default a too verbose trace
+ Matroska: more elements support and typo fixes in the trace
+ #I172, Trace feature: provide the name of the main parser in the media element
+ Matroska: consider all values below 0x10 EBML names as 1-byte junk
x Matroska: better support (including speed improvement) of huge lossless frames (e.g. 20 MB FFV1 4K)
x #I144, Python binding: Python 2 on Linux does not automatically provide the locale to the shared object
x HTML output: don't escape carriage returns from the input file
x FFV1: some streams were rejected despite the fact they are valid
x Python binding: some errors during call of Get() API with Python3 on Linux/Mac