Please scroll down for the How-To guide if you do not want to read the intro.
DivX is actually the name of the company that manufactures the popular DivX codec. The DivX codec became well known for its ability to compress video and audio files into a single small file while still retaining much of the original integrity of the movie being compressed.
The DivX codec has become increasingly popular with the ripping community (people that rip their home DVDs and movies to their hard drives) because of its ability to create near perfect DVD rips while reducing the size by almost 75%. Nowadays the DivX codec is showing up in a lot more places than just movie files and there are many uses for the codec and its spin-off encoding partners.
Let’s take a look at what DivX can do and how you can use it to your advantage.
The DivX company offers a DivX player that will allow the playback of many DivX encoded files. Their newly updated player is capable of full HD playback in multiple container formats. The most popular video containers to hold DivX encoded files are MKV and AVI. The DivX Player will play both. While it’s not the most popular player around, it gets the job done. For people looking to play DivX encoded files along with many others, we recommend VLC. Download links can be found below.
The DivX company also offers a converter that will allow you to take previously encoded files and convert them to work with DivX compatible players. This allows for users to take their other AVI container files or WMV HD files and convert them to the MKV DivX HD format. Simply download the converter and follow the instructions. There isn’t much to dragging and dropping an existing file into the program window and letting it do its thing. The download link for the DivX Converter can be found below.
DVD Player Compatibility
There has been a recent market influx of DivX compatible players for cheap prices. DivX compatible players add to the features of an existing DVD player in that instead of having to burn your DVDs to work on a DVD standard format, you can simply put any DivX encoded files onto a blank CD or DVD and pop them into a DVD to play. This means that instead of going through the lengthy burning process which can sometimes take a few hours, you’ll simply copy a file over to the CD instead.
- Obtain a blank CD and find the DivX file you wish to copy. DVD rips of movies encoded in an AVI container with the DivX codec are typically around 700 megabytes in size and will fit on a standard CDR.
- Open your favorite CD burning software and simply “copy” the files to the disc. Do not attempt to burn them to the disc like you would burn a DVD.
- With the files copied to the CD, just as they would be copied to a USB drive or external hard drive, you can play the CD straight in the DivX compatible DVD player.
Just like with your DivX compatible player, many modern gaming systems are also capable of playing the DivX file format. Either burn a disc with your favorite DivX file or access the file from a media server located across your house. The Sony Playstation 3 and the Xbox360 are both capable of handling AVI containers and DivX files, making them the perfect unit for media playback.
DivX very recently released a player and codec pack for the Macintosh. The player comes bundled by default with the most popular versions of the codec including the HD version. The DivX player is also capable of playing a variety of other file formats that are native to Apple hardware including the popular Quicktime video format.
The primary competitor to DivX is a free codec known as XviD. Notice that XviD is simply DivX spelled backwards. XviD strives to provide the same services and encoding possibilities as the popular DivX codec, but instead releases their software for free. Since its inception, XviD has become the more popular video and audio codec of DVD rippers the world over. By using free software instead of paid software, they can cut down on costs and be unrestricted by proprietary warnings and protections.