[QuickTime Perian Tutorial] How to Download, Install and Use Perian for QuickTime

Posted by Candice Liu to Convert Video, QuickTime | Updated on Dec 6, 2018

Perian, the swiss-army knife of QuickTime components, is designed to expand the file formats and subtitles supported by QuickTime Player. With the components installed on macOS, QuickTime is able to handle a motley collection of formats, from the commonly used MKV, FLV, MPEG-4, H.264, H.263, WebM, VP8, SRT/SSA subtitles to the less known formats HuffYUV, and more. If you are still using this component for QuickTime 7.6.6 or older, get started with QuickTime Perian tutorial and learn how to download, install and use it for Mac. Note that if you are using QuickTime 10 or above, the most efficient way to play videos on QuickTime without unsupported video container/codec format issues is to use a video converter for Mac.

Perian Alternative: Play Videos on QT without Any Issue

MacX Video Converter Pro, a robust alternative to Perian, will help QuickTime play any media file without errors. The software can quickly convert 4K, 1080P, 720P, SD video of MKV, FLV, WMV, AVI, H.265 to QuickTime supported formats MOV, MP4, MPEG-4, H.264. With its built-in 370+ video audio codecs, no additional video codecs or plugins are needed. macOS High Sierra is also supported.

How to Download and Install Perian for QuickTime

You have different sources to download QuickTime codec Perian for Mac, the safest ones include its official site (the download is available under the statement), Softonic, and CNET. Below is the information. Some download buttons or links may redirect you to Perian alternatives. Check the file name before you save the plugin to your computer.
File size: 3.4MB
File name: Perian_1.2.3.dmg
OS: Mac OS X 10.4.7 or higher ( Yosemite or above is not supported)

How do I install QuickTime plugin Perian? After the download process is completed, double-click on the file icon to install the components.

How do I uninstall Perian? Before you remove it, shut it down on your computer. If you don't have any app uninstaller on your Mac, just go to Home/Library/Preference Panes/folder and Perian to the Trash and Empty. Or you can find the Perian folder in System Preferences, click on the Perian pane and select to remove the quicktime component.

Use QuickTime Perian download and install

How to Use Perian for QuickTime for macOS

Now, you have Perian installed for QuickTime for macOS, enabling you to play MKV, AVI, FLV etc. without compatibility issue. Here's how to do it.
Step 1: Find the media file you'd like to play on your computer.
Step 2: Right-click on the file.
Step 3: Select Open With and Perian - Open in QT Player on the list.
Step 4: That's it. You file should be playing in QuickTime with the help of Perian.

FAQ: QuickTime Not Working with Perian

1. Cannot open Perian on Mac

Q: I've tried to download Perian from different sources but none of them can be opened because of unidentified developer.
On you Mac, go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > General > Allow apps downloaded from… and set your preference, try to open Perian again to see if it works. For any users who can't open Perian for QuickTime, we suggest checking if the components are compatible with the version of QuickTime and macOS.

2. QuickTime with Perian won't open AVI files

Q: QuickTime refuses to play AVI files in QuickTime 7. Any straightforward solution for this problem?
It's common that QuickTime won't play AVI files even you have Perian installed on your computer. AVI is a container format introduced by Microsoft, which can contain different types of video and audio codecs unsupported by Perian. You have three ways to solve the error of QuickTime with Perian not playing AVI files:

Try other QuickTime Player alternative, for instance, VLC Media Player, 5KPlayer, MPlayerX etc.
Convert AVI to MOV, the best video format for QuickTime.
Install other AVI codec packs to help QuickTime play AVI media files.

3. QuickTime doesn't play MKV with Perian installed

Q: MKV video files won't play in QuickTime with plugin Perian. I downloaded some MKV files but they couldn't open via QuickTime with plugin Perian installed on Mac. I thought QuickTime would work with MKV videos.
MKV is a container format like MP4 and AVI. The reasons why QuickTime is not playing MKV are similar to that of QT not playing AVI files. To play MKV on Mac, try other MKV players for Mac or change MKV to MOV with H.264 codec that is widely accepted.

Forget Perian, Here's A Tool That Helps QuickTime Play Any Video

Perian is no longer under development and doesn't work with QuickTime 10 or above on Yosemite or later. It's not a reliable plugin to let QuickTime play a wide range of media files. Forget Perian, use a solid video converter for macOS like MacX Video Converter Pro to make QuickTime plays any type of video by converting any 4K/1080P/720P/SD video to QuickTime supported formats MOV, MP4 etc, for example, AVI to MOV, MKV to MP4, WMV to MOV, H.265 to H.264, DivX to MPEG-4 and more. No additional codec pack is required. Use steps below to get started easily.

Free download for macOS (macOS High Sierra also supported)

Use QuickTime Perian alternative

Step 1: Run the QuickTime Perian alternative on your computer, click Add Video icon at the top, and select source video files to load. You can add more than one video at a time.

Step 2: Choose an output format from the popping-up Output Profile window. Click Mac General Video and select MOV video with H.264 video from QuickTime.

Step 3: Click RUN button at the bottom to start converting videos to a QuickTime format. Now, the QuickTime can play any video on Mac without needing Perian.

Convert Any Video to QuickTime without any Codecs Installed

Free download the QuickTime plugin Perian alternative, MacX Video Converter Pro to play any type of video in QT without Perian by converting videos of MKV, AVI, WMV, FLV, M2TS, HEVC, VP9 etc. to QuickTime format MOV, H.264. It is frequently updated and fully supports macOS High Sierra or older.

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Perian Alternative: Play Any Video on QuickTime without Perian