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How To Play Recorded Mobile Audio (.AMR) in Evernote Without RealPlayer

If you’ve ever created a voice note in the Evernote mobile client and then tried to play the files through Evernote on your Windows desktop, you’ve probably seen the obnoxious message that tells you to install RealPlayer. Yeah, like we want to do that!

The message says “In order to play audio notes using the mobile AMR audio format, you need to install an audio player such as RealPlayer that supports AMR files. Considering the fact that the button actually links you to the RealPlayer home page, one has to wonder why Evernote decided to use that format for the mobile audio recording instead of an open format that could be played back directly.

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What we’ll do, instead, is setup VLC to player .AMR files, and then we’ll use a registry hack to force Evernote to recognize VLC as the player for .AMR files.

Note: there’s some chance that you might not encounter this message and your PC might be configured properly. In which case, why are you reading this article? Go check out How-To Geek ETC for some fun links.

Assign VLC to Play .AMR Files

Before you do anything else, you should make sure that you’ve got VLC installed on your PC. It’s the swiss army knife of media players, afterall.

The next thing you’ll want to do is save out the attachment to your desktop by opening up the note and selecting File –> Save Attachments, and saving it to your desktop.

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If the file type icon shows up blank, like mine did, that means that VLC is not currently assigned as the default player for that file type.

Note: assignment of the file type might have already happened during install of VLC, but maybe not. If it did, skip down further.

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If you right-click the file and choose Open with, you can choose VLC media player in the list, and make sure to check the box for “Always use the selected program to open this kind of file”.

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Setup the Registry Hack to Force Evernote to Play .AMR in VLC

If you’re able to play your files directly in Evernote at this point, be happy. All is well. If not, then open up regedit.exe through the start menu search or run box, and browse down to the following key:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes

Once there, you’ll want to create a key called .amr by right-clicking on Classes and choosing New –> Key. Then create one under that called OpenWithList, and another one underneath that called vlc.exe.

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Or… you can just download this file, unzip it, and double-click on it to enter the information into the registry.

Download the VLC .amr Evernote Fix Registry Hack from howtogeek.com

Restart Evernote

This is probably wise to do every so often anyway, but you will want to completely exit Evernote by choosing File –> Exit, or choosing it from the tray icon.

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Once you’ve started up Evernote again, you should be able to double-click on any mobile audio file and play it in VLC.

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Once again, registry hacks saved the day. At least on my PC.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 08/16/10

Comments (9)

  1. tim

    My copy of VLC complains that you have to recompile to get AMR support. This is due to license restrictions on the codec.

    I was able to use the same technique you gave to point to Quick Time which includes support for 3gp / AMR files by creating registry entry for QuickTimePlayer.exe

    Example registry file:
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\.amr\OpenWithList\QuickTimePlayer.exe]

  2. Haroon Q. Raja

    A question: Could the same process be used with KMPlayer instead of VLC player? If so, would one simply need to replace vlc.exe with kmplayer.exe or does one have to add kmplayer.exe’s folder to the path environment variable as well?

  3. Peter Rauh

    This worked perfectly. Thanks, not only for writing this post, but for tweeting it – so I would see it.

  4. The Geek

    @tim

    That’s awesome. Thanks!

  5. The Geek

    @Haroon

    It should work with just the name there, but you might have to test.

  6. Josh Richards

    Worked great under Vista x64. Just had to install the latest version of VLC and let it associate with the various audio file types (double-checked during install that it selects .AMR by default). That got AMR files to play from Explorer/be associated with VLC. Then had to make the registry change to get Evernote to stop nagging me to install RealPlayer. Restarted Evernote and all was good.

    Thanks,

    -jr

  7. ab

    The latest version of VLC plays amr files

  8. Namita

    Your post saved my day. As I was not able to hear so many of my Evernote notes made in workshops etc on my iPad. Only difference was that my files were being saved as .wav files on my windows laptop. Thanks for this post.

  9. Ales Balcar

    It did not work with my VLC installation.
    Is only supported by new version – 1.1.9. Portable edition works for me now, with no registry tweaking (I am running on WXP Tablet edition EN) – just assigned VLC as a default player for .amr files.
    Software Ales Balcarobtainable here:
    http://portableapps.com/apps/music_video/vlc_portable

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