SMPlayer on Linux: features, download and installation


One of the things you’ll notice after a clean install of Ubuntu, or pretty much any other Linux distribution, is this message when trying to play certain video files.

The default media player is not good with codecs

This means that the necessary codecs to play media are not installed on the system. Now, due to some copyright issues, some Linux-based operating systems cannot pre-pack codecs in the installation media. But they allow you to download and install the codecs with just one click, or you can just install a media player that has all the media codecs, to start with. To verify SMPlayer.

Meet SMPlayer: A Best Media Player for Linux

SMPlayer is a free and open-source media player built on the powerful MPlayer multimedia engine. SMPlayer is able to play avimp4, MKV, mpeg, movement, divx, h.264 and just about any other major media format. And the icing on the cake is that he can play Youtube videos too, without ads.

SMPlayer default interface

SMPlayer is a complete multimedia solution. It is cross-platform, so available on all operating systems. If you have dual boot, you can install it on your Windows and Linux operating system to get a uniform experience on both systems. It also supports convertible laptops with touch support.

You can also play YouTube on SMPlayer. I know it’s inconvenient to copy-paste the video URL and play it on an external player every time. But SMPlayer is especially useful when watching relatively long videos. SMPlayer plays YouTube videos in very good quality and I felt the videos were much better than the browser videos. And by playing longer videos on SMPlayer, you can stay away from mid-roll ads that appear on longer videos.

If you are watching a movie which has no subtitles, you can directly download the subtitles via SMPlayer. It comes with the integration. So none of that, open the browser, find the subtitles, download the suitable ones, unzip, put them in the video folder and connect the subtitles to the movie. No sir! SMPlayer at your service.

Auto download subtitles in SMPlayer

SMPlayer is available in over 30 languages ​​and is highly customizable. It contains both app themes and a ton of icon sets.

If you think SMPlayer’s default interface doesn’t look good, with a few clicks you can make it look like this:

SMPlayer skin change

SMPlayer comes with lots of tools and features for power users. It has an equalizer, video speed controls, aspect ratio and zoom controls, video filters, screenshot extraction and much more.

Overall, I really liked SMPlayer. It has a lot to offer in a small and light package. I think it is a must-have video player on your Linux PC. Apart from easily playing all media formats, it also provides a ton of power controls.

Installing SMPlayer on Linux

SMPlayer should be available in the software center of all major Linux distributions. You can search for it and install it from there itself.

On Ubuntu/ Linux Mint/ Elementary OS, you can also install SMPlayer by running the following command in terminal

sudo apt install smplayer

Alternatively, you can download the package for Fedora, Arch Linux, OpenSUSE and Debian here.


There are a good number of full-fledged media players like VLC media player. SMPlayer is one of the best video players for Linux with full functionality and great added benefits. I will consider it one of the must-have applications for Linux.

Give it a try and share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.


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