Part 1. Free DVD Players for Mac
To play a DVD on Mac, you need to get a DVD player software on Mac to play the movie and a optical drive to access the DVD data. If your Mac has a internal optical drive, you simply need to insert your DVD and let the DVD player app to open it. Below are the best free DVD player software in 2023 that can help play the DVD video on Mac.
1. Apple DVD Player
Best for: The defualt DVD player app for macOS to play standard DVDs without region codes or other copy protections.
If you have a SuperDrive on Mac, insert a DVD into the Mac DVD drive and the DVD Player will open automatically.It supports all the standard DVD features such as multiple audio, video & subtitle tracks as well as Dolby Digital 5.1 passthrough, DVD access URLs and closed captions.
Some people may think that Apple's DVD Player disappears with the release of macOS 10.14 Mojave, just like other 32-bit apps. But it's actually not. It has been updated to a 64-bit app. Simply use Spotlight, search for DVD Player, and then you'll find it at the top of the Top Hits. Double lick on the app icon and it will launch.
Play DVD on Mac with Apple DVD Player
Comes bundled in Mac machines and is totally free to play DVD on MacBook Pro, iMac, etc.
It is fully compatible with DVDs authored by DVD Studio Pro and iDVD.
It enforces most restrictive measures of DVD technology, such as DVD region code and user operation prohibition.
It lacks a DTS decoder, which means DTS tracks cannot be played through the Mac's built in speakers or analog output.
Older versions of DVD Player won't work on external DVD drives.
How to Play a DVD Using Apple DVD Player on Mac?
You simply need to insert a DVD and the Mac DVD Player app will start playing it automatically. If the auto-play doesn't happen, please tap the Space bar after the DVD is recognized.
Best for: a free region-free DVD player for macOS.
DVD Player will not work, so you may have to download a third-party DVD player on Mac. 5KPlayer is one of the best choices.
It is an awesome DVD player for macOS Ventura that supports both protected and homemade DVDs without problem. Without any ads, malware or spyware, it is 100% safe to get both homemade and copy-protected discs playing on iMac 5K, Macbook Air/Pro, Mac Mini, and more with near HD quality.
The Mac-stylish UI is highly acclaimed among DVD users. Working as an all-in-one free media player, it can also play ISO image, Video_TS folder, 4K/8K UHD videos, 3D videos, etc, all at your fingertips.
Play DVD on Mac with 5KPlayer
Support playing DVDs protected by region codes, CSS, RCE, Sony ARccOS, Disney DRM, etc;
Not only a free DVD player for Mac computer, but also an HD/4K UHD media player, downloader and Airplay sender/receiver;
Clean and awesome skin and UI.
It doesn't support Blu-ray discs.
How to Play DVD on Mac with 5KPlayer?
After inserting a DVD, you simply need to open 5KPlayer, click the DVD button in the main interface, and then open and play your DVD.
3. VLC Media Player
Best for: the most popular, safe, and free DVD player.
VLC is the most popular open-source and cross-platform media player that supports physical media (DVD, Audio-CD, VCD), almost all audios and videos (H264, MPEG4, MP4, MOV, AVI, Ogg, MKV, MP3, etc). It is the best option available as free DVD player for Mac OS X, Windows, Linux, Android, iOS, etc.
Technically, you can even use this Mac DVD player software to play encrypted DVD discs without the aid of any third party software, as long as your Mac computer has a DVD drive for you to insert and view your disc.
VLC play DVD on Mac
Great audio/video performance;
Support playback of encrypted DVDs from Disney, Sony, paramount, etc;
Support a wide range of media file types, including HD and Bluray discs.
The user interface is a little bit unlikeable, with skin options needing enhancement;
Run into problems like VLC won't play MKV, VLC won't play DVD and VLC audio sync from users feedbacks.
How to Use VLC to Play DVD on Mac?
1. Find VLC in Applications and open it.
2. Click Open media in VLC, choose Disc, and then select your DVD and hit Open. Then VLC will begin playing DVD on your Mac laptop or desktop.
Best for: best Mac DVD player to play DVDs with customized settings.
KMPlayer is similar to VLC, which is also a solid open-source media player that can deal with any media and subtitle formats you throw at it, ranging from VCD, DVD, AVI, MKV, OGM, 3GP, WMV, QuickTime to compressed audio album.
The bonus features enable you to play damaged/incomplete AVI file, locked files while downloading and even play movies without worrying about formats and storage on Android and iOS. Editor from CNET gives KMplayer 4-star rating. No wonder it is one of the best DVD player for macOS to
play DVD movies on Mac mini, MacBook, etc.
KMplayer play dvd on mac
Easy access to subtitle management, brightness adjustments and frame captures;
Handle a bewildering variety of media files;
Stream local videos to your mobile device via Wi-Fi, provided you install Connect app on Android or iOS.
A preview-heavy Mac DVD movies player that throws ads and links constantly;
Sometimes fail to play DVDs on Mac due to Region Code issue
5. XBMC (now Kodi)
Best for: it's a media center application and can do more than other Mac DVD players on the list.
Labeled as the High Definition Hub for all kinds of media, XBMC Media Center joins our top 7 best DVD players working on Mac list with no ambiguity. This free open-source media center is a pretty good contender as 5KPlayer, being easy to use, slick and supported by a large community of users. It offers a number of options and settings that allow you to
play DVDs on Mac OS right out of the box from the main menu something other free DVD players cannot do yet maximize DVD playback quality.
XBMC media player
Look great from the start with lots of skins;
Stream video over a network with no effort.
Take some time to customize for Macs.
6. Mac Media Player
Best for: It includes all the basic functions you may want from a DVD player.
Macgo Free Mac Media Player is a basic but efficient program to play all kinds of media files right on your Mac, whether they originate on your computer or on a disk. As soon as you install this program, it's ready to go, so you won't have to worry about managing complicated configurations or setups before you start playing your files. It also offers super high definition visual effects & fabulous DTS5.1 audio spectacle.
DVD player for mac - Mac Media Player
A powerful high def video player with hardware acceleration capabilities.
Has the potential to use up plenty of system resources.
It may have trouble playing DVDs on the latest macOS Ventura.
Part 2. External DVD Player/Drive for Mac
If you're running on a MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, or Mac Mni that doesn't come with a DVD drive, you also need to get an external DVD drive to open a DVD. That means after you select a DVD player app for Mac from the list above, you still need to choose an external DVD drive.
In addition to the Apple USB SuperDrive, there are many other external DVD players for Mac that can also help. Below are some of the best in 2023 based on the price, speed, USB compatibility, quality, design, user ratings, etc. Just select the one that suits you the most.
Gotega External DVD Drive - a cheap external DVD player for Mac with fast speed.
Dell DW316 - a lightweight and slim DVD player for those who have a tight budget.
Amicool External DVD Drive - a beautiful Mac DVD player with a special design and also stable performance.
SAMSUNG TSST - an ultra-slim DVD player with extra features like Tilt Actuator Compensation, though at a higher price.
Pioneer BDR-XU03 - an advanced DVD player for Mac that also supports Blu-ray discs, BDXL, DVD, and CD. It's fast, quiet, highly compatible yet quite expensive.
LG GP65NB60 - the best Mac DVD player if you have some M-disks. It's also a slim and quiet DVD player, though it's not as strong as other players as it's made of plastic.
Part 3. FAQ
1. Is there a DVD player on Mac?
Yes. It is called DVD Player. This Mac DVD Player app isn't missing with the appearance of macOS Mojave. Where is the DVD Player in Mac? There're two ways to find and open it.
Method 1. Go to System > LibraryCoreServices/ > Applications.
Method 2. Click the little Spotlight icon in the top right corner of your Mac's screen. Search for "DVD Player", and then the DVD Player app's icon should show up at the top of the Top Hits. Double-click on the icon, and the app will launch.
2. Can QuickTime play DVDs and how to play DVDs on QuickTime?
No. Many users wonder how to play a DVD on QuickTime. But actually, QuickTime can't play DVDs or DVD video formats (like VOB, Video_TS, ISO, or IFO). You can either use the dedicated DVD Player app on Mac or convert the DVD to QuickTime formats like MP4, MOV, and M4V.
3. How can I play DVD on Mac without a DVD player?
Playing DVDs on Mac requires a DVD player and an integrated optical drive, or a DVD player app and an external DVD drive. Either way, a DVD player app and drive is a must. If you don't want to use a DVD player app or an optical drive to play a disc, the only way is to convert the DVD into a digital format. Then you can open the converted DVD movie with any other media player freely.
4. Why is my DVD not playing on my Mac?
There are many reasons causing this:
System issues usually after upgrading macOS.
Bad or damaged Superdrive. If your DVD drive is damaged, the player will not be open.
Region issue on commercial DVDs.
DVD disc is scratched or dirty. In this case, your DVD disc player can accept discs but they do not mount or are automatically ejected.
Unsupported DVDs such as some commercial DVDs. If your DVD discs are not supported, the player will go to a black screen and then unexpectedly quit.
Solutions: As the reasons about DVD player not working above, you can find the corresponding way to fix DVD not playing problems, such as repairing or purchasing a new DVD drive, removing DVD region code, cleaning the dirty DVD discs, fixing the scratched DVDs, converting unsupported DVD to MP4 and the like, etc. 5. Why Apple DVD Player says "Not Permitted"?
If this error message pops up for certain DVDs, it may be because it doesn't support the DVD protection or DVD type; if this error appears for every DVD, the problem might be the settings. For more details, you can read "
How to Fix Apple DVD Player Not Permitted Error on Mac". 6. Why does DVD Player say "supported disc not available"?
This message appears when there is no disc in the DVD drive or when it can't recognize video content burned onto certain types of DVD-RW discs. You can burn the content into a DVD-R disc. For more details, check the article "
How to Fix Supported Disc Not Available". 7. Why does DVD Player say "skipping over damaged area"?
This is because your DVD is scratched. Check "
How to Fix Scratched DVD". 8. Why does Mac automatically eject DVDs?
It happens because you insert a DVD whose region is different from the one the DVD drive is set to, and you don't change the region code when prompted, or when you have reached the maximum number of region changes.