April 11, 2016

How to Make a Media Player in C Language in Less Than 1000 Lines Using ffmpeg

Every Engineering student and a graduate are aware of a new language other than the regular languages. C is one of the most popular high-level Programming languages based on some coding. Want to make media player using ‘C’ language? Do you really consider there is a step-by-step instruction for programming a media player? You’ll have to consider various tasks for doing this. You need to open and display media files, designing the user interface, using menus and mouse or keyboard events.

Handling multimedia with ffmpeg is pretty much as simple as this program, although some programs might have a very complex “DO SOMETHING” step. So in this tutorial, we’re going to open a file, read from the video stream inside it, and our DO SOMETHING is going to be writing the frame to a PPM file.

What is ffmpeg?

ffmpeg is a complete, cross-platform solution to record, convert and stream audio and video. It is the best and perfect library for creating video applications or even general purpose utilities. It actually takes care of all the hard work of video processing by doing various tasks that includes:

  • Decoding
  • Encoding
  • Muxing
  • Demuxing

This can make media applications much modest to write. It’s simple, written in C, pretty fast, and can decode almost any codec you’ll find in use today, and encode several other formats as well.

How to Make a Media Player in C Language Using ffmpeg?

ffmpeg is a rich video library which is written in C language that helps you to make simple media applications. Based on the updated version of ffplay (model program coming with ffmpeg), here, I’m sharing the best way to code your own media player in less than 1000 lines.

If you’ve pretty much knowledge of libraries used for creating video applications, ffmpeg is one of the best ways. This wonderful general purpose library performs complex video processing work like decoding, encoding, demuxing and muxing. This video library which is written in C has the ability to decode most codecs.

If you wish to get started with ffmpeg, you couldn’t find much information available online. Hence, I have shared a detailed step-by-step guide that helps you make a Media Player in C Language in less than 1000 lines using ffmpeg.

Click here to read the complete Tutorial.

  • In this guide, to get the video and audio output of the media file, SDL (Simple DirectMedia Layer) has been used as it’s a good cross-platform media library used in many video games and media software.
  • To compile the programs that’ll be taught in the tutorial, you need to download SDL development libraries on your system and install it.
  • On each page, there’s a C file that you can download, compile, and follow along.

With a good knowledge queues, mutexes and much more in C language and some other multimedia basics, you are well enough to twitch with making your own media player.

While the program doesn’t make a player to accomplish all your media playback requirements, just take it as an approach to study more, gain knowledge and discover more and more opportunities to make enhancements in the program.

Article first found on FossBytes.

About the author 

Imran Uddin

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