How-To Geek

SPlayer is a Quality Video Player That is Light on Resources

If you’re looking for a new video player that provides great picture quality and is light on system resources, you might want to take a look at SPlayer. SPlayer in unique in that it utilizes the GPU in your video card and saves your CPU and RAM for other multitasking.


After installation, start up SPlayer (short for Shooter Player) and you’ll be given the opportunity to make it your default player or select manual settings. They offer a portable version as well which is nice if you want to use it on multiple machines.


If you want to try it out and make sure you’re happy with the player first, then pick Manual Settings and then you can choose the types of media files to associate it with.


Video File Thumbnails

Update: One Caveat we noticed is if you do change your file associations it may remove some of your thumbnails and replace them with the SPlayer logo.

Here are a few different thumbs you might see…




Like the geek mentioned in the comments…”The file associations killing the thumbnails are definitely a problem, though I’d like to point out that video thumbnails are always flaky in Windows, even if you use VLC. There’s just too many codecs out there”.



Playing a Video File

Select a file to open up and play in SPlayer.


Here we take a look at running a video in SPlayer. Notice the player controls are at the bottom of the video screen.


The playback controls are only displayed when you hover the mouse over the video screen near the bottom.


Right-click on the video screen to access different menus to adjust settings of playback, Audio, access files, and more.


There’s a 10 band equalizer that you can adjust manually or use one of the several presets included.


There is a cool Transparent Control feature that could actually help you out while you’re watching videos at work. Here is an example of the regular video screen over Firefox.

9 transparent

Now in this shot we’re sliding the Transparent Control slider…


Adjust the brightness and contrast of the video…


Video control features that let you tweak the display to perfection.


If you’re a Keyboard Ninja you’ll love all of the customizable hotkeys available.


SPlayer does subtitles really well too.


You can also play your music files in SPlayer as well, but its main function is being a video player.


This is a very nice video player that is easy to use and plays most video formats. If you’re looking for a new video player that looks great, has several options, and is light on system resources, you might want to give SPlayer a try.

Download SPlayer including Portable Version

Brian Burgess worked in IT for 10 years before pursuing his passion for writing. He's been a tech blogger and journalist for the past seven years, and can be found on his about me page or Google+

  • Published 02/25/10

Comments (16)

  1. Corey

    it has been rated as having a virus on web of trust

  2. cowgod

    yeah, it also embeds itself pretty deeply in your registry and destroys your movie thumbnails in windows 7 explorer. also, the “portable” version isn’t portable at all–the registry is still used profusely. you might want to consider removing this article, or at least putting a warning at the top about the issues presented by Corey and myself.

  3. jnordcrane

    It’s a slick program … too bad there seem to be some hefty caveats. Any recommendations for a similar program??

  4. The Geek

    We’ll add a warning to the article, but I think there’s some overreaction here. We’ve been using SPlayer here for a while, and it works really well.

    Let’s answer these things by point:

    1) The supposed virus on WOT is because there’s a false positive with one of the more aggressive virus scanners. These types of apps often have false positives, because they contain codecs. That doesn’t mean it has a virus. Here’s the link to the Virus Total page, and you’ll note that all the reputable virus scanners say that the file is clean:

    2) The other comment on WOT is complaining about SPlayer connecting to a server in china. This is because SPlayer checks for updates by default, and it’s a chinese software. Unfortunately, WOT is deeply flawed in that people can leave nasty comments even if they have no idea what they are talking about, or perhaps have an agenda to damage the reputation of that site.

    3) After running through a Process Monitor check, SPlayer is not doing much different than any other multimedia type of application. All apps overuse the registry, and every application needs to make registry calls to check various Windows settings, even most of the portable ones.

    4) The file associations killing the thumbnails are definitely a problem, though I’d like to point out that video thumbnails are always flaky in Windows, even if you use VLC. There’s just too many codecs out there.

    5) If you’re really paranoid, just don’t install it. Or consider switching to Linux, where these problems don’t exist in the first place!

    We’ll update the article to mention the thumbnails, which is definitely valid and we should have included it.

  5. gunn0r

    The SPlayer looks good, but I prefer SMPlayer:
    BTW: With SMPlayer, the thumbnails are good. Probably because many codecs are included.
    @jnordcrane: Perhaps you should also give SMPlayer a test drive.

  6. Fabian

    My USB’s are not woring I have already take out the batery and still don’t work I shuld I do?

  7. bassmadrigal

    @gunn0r While I personally use SMPlayer on both windows and linux, splayer does have one thing on windows that sets it apart. It is capable of doing hardware acceleration. Now, I have a fast enough computer that I can decode 1080p video, but it is very taxing on my computer and not everyone is able to. So the hardware acceleration might be a big point for some.

    Although I would love to see a writeup of smplayer. One of the things I love about it, is the fact I can use it in both windows and linux. And it is very simplistic compared to what VLC has become these days (although that can be a good thing as well). While it is able to keep the complexity down, you do still have a lot of options to further improve your video experience.

  8. eezdva

    I am loving it.

    Left VLC as my default and will just choose it when I want to play something. So I dont get the broken thumbnails

  9. lfb001

    SPLAYER solved the problem with MKV files playback on my Acer Aspire REVO R3610-U9022
    connected to a Vizio 720p

  10. Mysticgeek


    We do have a write up on SMPlayer for Windows…

    And will have one for Linux shortly

  11. john

    Is a there a solution found to fix the broken thumbnail problem?

  12. Alan

    I’ve been using GomPlayer for years but thought I’d give SPlayer a try. Like it very much but now it won’t play the audio. Audio works with all other programs. Help is in Chinese,I think. Any ideas?

  13. Tom

    uninstalled but thumbnails are still broken… :(

  14. John

    I have found that some of the dll that are suppose to install don’t. They are:

    Also, my virus checker gets stuck rying to check the SPlayer files.

  15. adnan

    it can play all video format but it cant play all audio format piece of crap km is the best wish splayer can play all audio formats checked both the player with multiple format.


    currently using it,its just awesome i just wished the sound quality was better like km overall i’ll rate it 9/10

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