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I've got 3 videos, all 3 have the same time, same amount of frames, and they only differ in terms of encoding quality.

Now I need them to run side-by-side in synchronized fashion for evaluation purposes. Meaning when I press "play" BOTH! videos should start. Analogically for stop, forward, backward.

Anyone know any player capable of doing that? By that I mean playing more than 1 video side-by-side...

Platform: Win7

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Invest in some finger weights and train yourself to click very quickly. –  ta.speot.is May 10 '10 at 11:15
You're missing the point: I need a player capable of displaying more than 1 video. –  Don Salva May 10 '10 at 15:28
I think perhaps he was joking... –  Joe Taylor Jul 21 '11 at 8:13
you can schedule a task to open them all at once. –  Uğur Gümüşhan Feb 13 '13 at 23:33

8 Answers 8

up vote 8 down vote accepted

VLC on Windows (1.1.10 or later):

  • Tools → Preferences
  • Show Settings → All
  • Click Advanced
  • Uncheck "Allow only one running instance"
  • Uncheck "One instance when started from file"

VLC on OS X does not provide the same set of options. You can however run multiple instances from the Terminal with open -a VLC.

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Bino is a cross-platform media player commonly recommended for stereoscopic file playback. Among other features, it supports synchronized playback of multiple streams.

The interface may seem a bit primitive or confusing at first, but all you need to do is

  1. Drag your two video files into Bino
  2. Select "Separate streams, left first" input option and "Left/right" output option

Voilà, you got synchronized playback. The kind where a single set of playback controls is used for all streams so you wouldn't have to "Invest in some finger weights and train yourself to click very quickly" as @ta.speot.is suggests.

As a bonus, it supports rendering anaglyph 3D.

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google probably already told you, you could buy a couple proprietary software who could do that, but just in case : videocompare, tmpgenc, vidlord...

This one's free : http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.php?t=138430

(working download links at the end of the thread)

Untested because my wine setup is completely screwed right now. It doesn't do side by side but stacked playback (unless you have a very good lcd you won't be seeing the same thing by playing the same vid in two opposite corners of the screen anyway)

If you think you really need side by side you can use avisynth to do what zimmer said.

clip1 = DirectShowSource("C:\MyEncode1.foo", audio=false)
clip2 = DirectShowSource("C:\MyEncode2.foo", audio=false)

(reference forum.doom9.org/showthread.php?t=139769)

You don't need to do an encode (wich would add its own encoding artifacts anyway), just make a project that would produce an encode of the two vids playing together and skip through the file.

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I image you can use an AutoHotKey script to send a "Play" shortcut to all three players in a very short amount of time.

Whether they are able to start playing at exactly the same time is a different matter. Even if they are able to start straight away, I imagine there will be some fighting for the hard drive. Might want to make a RAM disk if this is an important evaluation.

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You're missing the point: I need a player capable of displaying more than 1 video. –  Don Salva May 10 '10 at 15:27
Any media player where you can open up more than one instance, eg VLC –  ta.speot.is May 11 '10 at 1:20
Not really taspeotis. Because I have to manually start each application which in turn translates into NOT synchronous. –  Don Salva May 15 '10 at 8:38

If this is not something you do very often, I would use a video editing software like vegas to build one video with all of them showing.

Youtube video example of how to do that.

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That's a very inconvenient way to do that. Still better than nothing so far. –  Don Salva May 10 '10 at 15:28

try Kinovea, it's free and frame accurate :

Kinovea is a video player for all sport enthusiasts.
Slow down,study and comment the technique of your athletes or of yourself.
It is 100% free and open source.
Observe two videos side by side and synchronize them on a common event.

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Welcome to SuperUser. Link-only answers are not very useful, so this needs some descriptive text. –  harrymc Jun 9 at 11:19
Doesn't seem to play audio, but if you don't need that (I didn't), it was super easy to install and get running in seconds and plays two videos side-by-side without any issues. –  hheimbuerger Jun 15 at 22:44

Many players will be able to output a picture of a single frame in the video.

You could choose multiple points in your videos to compare different types of image (clouds, smoke, trees, grass, motion are good for encoding comparisons) and take the same frames from each of your videos.

You can then make comparisons on a static image rather than trying to spot differences in motion. You can compare on a pixel by pixel basis if you want.

Ensure you don't use JPG as the output though as this is a lossy format and will introduce its own artefacts.

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You're missing the point: I need a player capable of displaying more than 1 video. –  Don Salva May 10 '10 at 15:26
@NoCanDo: I understand that, this is just an alternative option for you to compare video encoding results should you not find a suitable answer. –  Shevek May 10 '10 at 16:00

If you want to try more advanced stuff to play video you should take a look at this > http://vvvv.org/documentation/boygrouping-basics

vvvv is a hybrid graphical/textual programming environment for easy prototyping and development. It is designed to facilitate the handling of large media environments with physical interfaces, real-time motion graphics, audio and video that can interact with many users simultaneously.

It has a VLC node that you can program to make lots of things with video > http://vvvv.org/documentation/filestream-%28ex9.texture-vlc%29

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