What video players out there exists that have frame by frame playback feature ?
Media Player Classic (Home Cinema) Sourceforge
I've landed on this page quite often when trying to watch video clips frame by frame. Having tried many of the suggestions, I'm still frustrated with the lack of availability or ease of use of such a feature, which I find indispensable in an analytic environment (I'm not trying to go frame by frame on Leia's slave costume).
Today having tried VLC only to discover it has a frame by frame forward but not backward, and subsequently landed on the VLC forums where many users ask for the feature, I learned something. It is apparently not an easy thing to do for certain codecs (as far as I can tell, the ones designed for streaming, or "multi-frame" compressions). For example, ImageJ will save AVI files which are evidently a sequence of JPEG images more or less concatenated into a single file. So here frame by frame is easy---the "codec" is "frame based". Take an MPEG movie, where if, on frame 512, the top left corner has not changed since frame 265, video players are unable to go backwards and render the image correctly for frame 511 without theoretically loading some unknown number of previous frames to build a "history" of the image.
Needless to say I do not believe any manipulation of data is impossible with a computer and certainly if these video players can render to the screen they could keep a buffer in RAM with a history of rendered frames to at least allow some amount of frame by frame, but this is not feasible for an entire HD movie and thus, at least in VLC's case, they don't see the point of implementing it for clips of some maximum duration.
Quick time can do it.
Hold down K and tap J or L – allows you to scrub the video in slow motion, viewing in either rewind or forward frame by frame
I use Zoom Player. Control frame-by-frame playback using the mouse scroll wheel. both ways.
ImageJ can load some videos as a stack which makes frame-by-frame easy in either direction. http://rsbweb.nih.gov/ij/
It's significantly limited as far as codecs.