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How to Play AVI Files on MacBook | 4 Ways to Go!

AVI or Audio Video Interleave is a popular video container format developed by Microsoft. You cannot play AVI video files on Mac as the default QuickTime player doesn't support it. More than that, as it would contain multiple types of video and audio tracks interleaved with each other. This attribute makes it harder to play AVI DivX or XviD files on Mac.

Though QuickTime 7 and QuickTime X (QuickTime Player v10.x) native structures are said to be compatible with AVI, QT X AVFoundation couldn't recognize AVI video unless it's encoded by Motion JPEG, alongside with PCM audio. Therefore, the key to deciding the successful playback of AVI on Mac lies in the type of compression codec of the AVI itself. Thus, it becomes clear how to open and view .avi files on macOS since the knot has been found. Top 4 solutions are available and helpful here:

Solution 1. Convert AVI DivX/XviD Video to QuickTime on Mac

When Mac QuickTime can't play DivX/XviD AVI files, you can convert AVI format to Mac supported formats, such as MOV, M4V or MP4. MacX Video Converter Pro is able to convert AVI to Mac with high quality and fast speed.

  • Bulk convert AVI DivX/XviD videos to QuickTime MPEG-4/H264 or HEVC in MP4, MOV, M4V formats.
  • 5X faster speed converting large & high-quality AVI videos to Mac QuickTime with GPU acceleration.
  • Freely choose audio track from AVI multiple sound tracks; extract or add subtitles from/to AVI file, as well.
  • Up to 98% quality kept with the built-in High Quality Engine for a visually no quality loss output file.
  • 420+ preset profiles to convert AVI to MKV, VOB, SWF, WebM, iMovie, iPhone iPad, Apple TV, Android, etc.

How to Convert AVI from DivX/XviD to Mac QuickTime

To begin with, free download the AVI video converter on your MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac, Mac mini, or Mac Pro. Install and run it.

Step 1: Click "+ Video" button to load the AVI file you want to convert for playback on Mac.

Step 2: Select an Mac compatible output format. On the Output Profile panel, you can scroll down to "Mac General Video" and choose "MP4 Video (H264)", "MP4 Video (MPEG4)", "MOV Video (H264)", or locate to "Apple Device" to choose "QuickTime Video". And, hit "Done".

Convert AVI to Mac playable format

Besides H.264 and MPEG4 video codec, it also supports converting AVI video to HEVC/H.265 codec which can release more space for your Mac's hard drive. All Macs on High Sierra and later support HEVC playback.

Step 3: Click "Browse" button to choose a destination folder to save converted AVI files.

Step 4: Click "RUN" to start converting AVI for Mac. Hardware acceleration is by default enabled to boost conversion speed by maintaining high quality.

Besides converting AVI to Mac, MacX Video Converter Pro has many other features you'll love.

  • Compress and reduce AVI video size by lowering resolution 4K to 1080p, bit rate, frame rate 60FPS to 30FPS, etc.
  • Some basic editing features are offered, like cut video length, crop video border, and merge clips into 1.
  • Free record screen video, gameplay video on MacBook or iMac.
  • Allow you to download video from YouTube, Vimeo, Dailymotion, Metacafe, Facebook, and more 1000+ sites.

Solution 2. Install Perian to Help QuickTime Play AVI on Mac

Insisting on using QuickTime for AVI playback, you can install Perian. This is a free and open-source QuickTime component which can bring necessary codecs or components to help QuickTime play AVI, MKV, FLV, MTS, DivX, WMA and more on Mac. Certainly even if Perian is installed, QuickTime won't play all media types.

note icon
Perian is no longer under development. It fails to work with QuickTime 10 or later and it may be incompatible with your macOS.

How to Use Perian to Free Open and Play AVI on Mac

Step 1. Download and install Perian from https://perian.org/. once done, it will be listed inside System Preferences.

Step 2. Right click on the AVI file and then choose QuickTime to open it.

Solution 3. Watch AVI File on Mac with 5KPlayer

When QuickTime won't play AVI on Mac, you still have many other AVI players for Mac to choose from, such as 5KPlayer. 5KPlayer works like a charm, without requiring to install codec pack.

5KPlayer is a 100% free and clean media player, enabling you to play SD HD 4K UHD AVI video on MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac, etc. It supports AVI files with codecs DivX, Xvid or 3ivX etc. It delivers surprisingly great audio and image quality. With frequent update, it fully supports macOS Monterey, Big Sur, Catalina, High Sierra, and earlier OS.

Now free download 5KPlayer so that you can view AVI on Mac without converting.

In fact, 5KPlayer can also play 720p/1080p/4K UHD/8K videos in MKV, M2TS, FLV, MOV, MP4, AVCHD and more, music audio in MP3, AAC, AC3, DVDs, and many more on Mac and Windows (including Win 10). Additionally, it can download video and music from YouTube, Dailymotion, Vimeo, Vevo, over 300 sites for free.

How to Use 5KPlayer to Open AVI (DivX/XviD) Video on Mac

Step 1. Download and install 5KPlayer. Once done, open it.

Step 2. Load target AVI file to play. There're 3 ways to do so.

Free AVI player for Mac
  • Click "Video" to browse and open the source AVI file on the main interface;
  • Drag and drop AVI video to the main window;
  • Right click AVI file, choose to open with 5KPlayer.

Solution 4. Install the Right Codec to Make QuickTime Play AVI on Mac

That QuickTime fails to play your AVI files may be because it doesn't support the AVI' codec. AVI is a container format. It can package various codecs, such as Xvid, DivX and 3ivX. So you need to know how the AVI file is coded and download the right codec for QuickTime to decode it on Mac.

To figure out the codec used to encode AVI, you can open the file with QuickTime and choose Show Movie Info from the Window menu. Then you should be able to find codec information after format properties. Next, you should check if the codec is supported by QuickTime or not. If it is an unsupportive codec, you can download the codec online.

The most popular codecs that can be installed to play AVI on Mac are:

Both add support for a variety of DivX and other formats which often carry the .avi extension. You can download and install either one codec. Once done, open QuickTime and see if it can play your AVI file on Mac now.

But this method isn't foolproof. Some users report that after installing DivX for Mac, the sound in some AVIs will sometimes be either missing or distorted.

To sum up, the ways above are the all we got currently to open and play AVI file on Mac. You'll surely find a workable way.