How to Play MKV Files on Windows?

Here are the best MKV players:

  • VLC Media Player
  • 5KPlayer
  • GOM Player
  • KMPlayer

Edited by Nataly Bogorad

July 18, 2019

Five Best MKV Players for Windows

Most people believe that .MKV is a media file formats, but contrary to these beliefs, MKV files are free, open-source container formats, that stores various multimedia files with the same or different encodings. File types may include unlimited video, subtitles, album arts and other associated files enclosed by the file provider.

There are numerous reasons why there is a steady increase in the number of users over the years, and these reasons are not far-fetched. MKV is also is known as Matroska contain High definition video or Ultra High Definition videos that gives a remarkable cinema experience and provides all the necessary files needed to execute the task. You can identify an MKV file quickly by their file extensions. .MKV represent video files while .MKS is for subtitles and .MKA is audio related files. MKV is a leading container format, so it is advisable to be more familiar with it and how to play MKV files. Therefore, let's start by exploring the best MKV players at our disposal suitable for Windows and other Operating Systems, and I bet that you will love to convert your files to MKV container format with the Movavi Video Converter before sending to online and offline users.

You can also check out Movavi Video Suite – a software package that includes a video editor, converter, screen recorder, and more.

VLC Media Player

VLC Player is a free open-source internationally popular player with full compatibility with Matroska. The software is a district for its versatility and efficiency in playing arguably all available file formats including MKV files without the need to download additional plugins and codecs. Users can experience difficulty playing MKV H.265, cut the stress, convert your files to H.264 and the file will play smoothly.

Distinct Features:

  • Various OS Support: The player works perfectly on virtually all available Operating System's ranging from Windows, iOS, Linux, Mac, Windows Mobile, Unix, and other available OS.
  • Easy and Advanced Control: There are a lot of tweakable controls on the software which does not require the intervention of a tech genius. From audio and video filter options to subtitle synchronization, VLC has a vast feature-set for an MKV file.
  • Converts to MKV and Vice Versa: You can convert and play MP4 and other file formats to MKV with just a few clicks, the same process applies when changing MKV files to a desired one.
  • Inbuilt Subtitle Search Engine: Finds online subtitles for PC tracks in different languages to favorite MKV files with the aid of the OpenSubtitle database.


5K MKV player is one of the most efficient in the category, its free of malware, viruses Windows and iOS software that helps to protect a system from online attacks when downloading files from the internet. It is a complete pack of efficiency with a combination of MKV, DLNA and Airplay, music and HD player. You can organize your video and audio files from its file manager and boost a visual video quality to an HDR 4K/8K, VP8/ VP9, H.264/H.265.

Distinct Features:

  • Compatible Operating Systems: : It works on only Mac and Windows OS so that there can be full concentration to solve almost all player issues before it's an introduction to other computer programs.
  • Streaming and Download Enabled: Download your favorite videos from over 300 supported websites, the file type of 1080P/ 720P/ 4K/ 5K/ HD/ videos and can easily stream Wireless audio materials with DLNA and AirPlay.
  • Built-in Universal Codec Pack: 5KPlayer has an internal package of codec files to help play files that may not be compatible with a system, it has a universal pack that functions perfectly with Windows 10, 8, 7 and on iOS.
  • Laudable Positive Rating by Professionals: Editors like Cultofmac, Techrader, TheWindowsClub, Softpedia, WidowsReport and others believe the player is a big deal for playing 4k/8k UHD pictures without a glitch and editing limitations.

GOM Player

GOM player is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a resourceful MKV player; its well-designed interface is easy to navigate amazing advanced features that make viewing experienced better. You can opt for a GOM remote to navigate most basic options and a customizable interface to suit your preference. There is a load of fancy logos and skin on the application's website that is cool.

Distinct Features:

  • Compatible Operating System: It is a Freemium software that is compatible with Windows, iOS and Android jelly bean or higher.
  • Keyboard and Mouse Shortcuts: Save time and make playback activities less stressful with shortcuts, there are 15 control keys for video size, 26 pans and scan, 7 playback speed, 14 video control, to name a few.
  • Available in Different Languages: The GOM player is available in English, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Japanese and Spanish, however, the developers intend to add more languages.
  • High Efficiency: These players are known for its rugged ability to playback some broken files and searches for missing codecs with the use of a search engine for a codec that jumps bad frame areas and rebuilds broke file index when there is a need.


Few players can match the KMPlayer in media playbacks, visualization and ability to play broken files. Though it is lightweight, it has productive features that are more efficient than in other heavier software of the same category. Most common and foremost file formats work perfectly well on it, and for those that do not work, users can include external decoders to make it play perfectly, in short, it is a fantastic MKV player that you would not regret using.

Distinct Features:

  • Neat Media Organization: Organize your files into different categories with the built-in file editor. You can present your video and audio files in a customized playlist from the home screen or video library.
  • File Downloads: KMPlayer unlocks MKV media files and protects the system from harmful viruses when a session is on. The real-time index rebuilds automatically when you are still on a download or send to another party.
  • Blue-ray and Slow-Motion Media Support: These versatile players comfortably play Blu-ray files of high definition and super high definition to give a theatre experience and can be on slow motion when you need to preview a particular portion or the entire video file carefully.
  • Connect from Anywhere: Even when you are away from your PC, it is still possible to access your favorite MKV files with KS connect which should be set up beforehand, once a connection is set, users can stream their data from their system through their mobile phones from anywhere.

Media Player Classic (MPC-HC)

Media Player Classic is a C++ application developed in May 2003 as a closed source software but was later made available to the public as a licensed free software which plays on 32-bit and 64-bit Operating System for Windows. Users can remove H.264, VC-1 additional and tearing video decoders with ease. It has an excellent picture rendering quality and has been consistent with regular updates to meet modern standards.

Distinct Features:

  • Friendly User Interface: The MPC has moved on from its old and former interface and has a standard and well-organized features and menu which can match any other software that serves the same purpose.
  • Supports OGG and Matroska Container Formats: The player supports Matroska and OGG file formats and corrected the OGM playback issues on the CoreVorbis DirectShow that once needed an immediate solution.
  • Available to Different Regions: A total of 42 languages is accessible on this software for users around the world to choose, the languages cut across all major areas like Asia, Africa, Europe, etc.
  • Great Video Support: MPC-HC can play HEVC(x.265) files without a glitch; this is something that most movie players find hard to buffer without additional support. It can play practically any video file format.

Now that you know the features of the best MKV players, it is important to know how to open the MKV files with your chosen player. Follow the steps below, and you will have a smooth ride.

How to Play MKV Files on Windows

Step 1: Identify and Download the MKV Player

Go to the Movavi Video Suite page or click the Download for Free button on this page to get the Windows version of the software.

Step 2: Install the Software

Run the installation file and follow the on-screen instructions. Now it’s time for opening and watching the movie!

Step 3: Open the Video Player

Launch the program and click the Watch video option.

Step 4: Locate and Open the MKV Files

Find the MKV file in the File Explorer and drag-and-drop the video files into the program window.


Movavi Video Suite

Everything you need to create and edit multimedia files

  • Edit videos and create slideshows
  • Capture screencasts or streaming web videos
  • Save videos for viewing on mobile devices
  • Convert media files and DVDs

* The free version of Movavi Video Suite has the following restrictions: 7-day trial period, watermark on the output videos, and, if you’re saving a project as an audio file, an ability to save only half the audio length. Learn more