Taking a second look at Miro

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 13, 2008
Updated • Dec 20, 2012
Music and Video

When I first reviewed Miro it was still known as the Democracy Player; a lot has changed since then and I decided to take a second look at Miro. The first question that I was asking myself was how I could classify Miro. Is it a video player, a videocast player, a way to play videos from video portals ? It's actually all of this although I would not use it for everything that I have just mentioned.

I would classify Miro as a videocast player with extended functionality. If you think Joost or Bablegum now you are wrong because Miro is open plattform while the other two are not. Open Plattform, what's that again ? Open Plattform means that any video producer can get his videos on Miro and that every viewer can also add videos using urls. Try that with Joost.

Another huge difference is that videos are actually downloaded to your hard drive and placed by default in the My Videos folder if you are using Windows. That means that you can watch them, burn them or send them to a friend without problems. The option to send a email link to a friend also exists in Miro btw.

The quality of the video depends how it was encoded but I can say that it is better than the quality of Joost from what I have seen so far.

The channel system has another advantage. You can subscribe to channels and when you do that you can opt to download new videos automatically when they are published. A few default channels are already added to your sidebar but those naturally don't appeal to everyone.

If you take a look at the categories offered you notice 3283 categories like Music, Food and Sports at the moment. A click on a category opens a list of available publishers and a click on a publisher the list of available videos from that publishers. Videos can be downloaded with the click of the left mouse button and can be added to playlists which are filled by dragging and dropping downloaded videos into them.

Besides the possibility to add videos from channels or urls users can also search popular video portals like Youtube, Google Video and Dailymotion and add videos found there to their library. Those videos are downloaded as well which means that you can watch them with another video player or send them to your friends easily.

If I had something to criticize it would be the following. You can't reach the category list from everywhere nor is there a home button. I had to click on Miro Guide to access these features. Another criticism is that you can't go back since there is no back button. This is for example irritating if you browse a channel and find a publisher that sounds interesting. Once you click on that publisher you can't get back to the list of channels.

There is no way to navigate search results if you search one of the video portals. You only see a handful of results and can't browse to a existing second page of results. At least I could not figure out how this would be possible. It would be nice if it would be possible to search multiple video portals at once and see one results list.

Yes, that screenshot is from the game Cannon Fodder on the Commodore Amiga by the Bitmap Brothers.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Anonymous said on August 1, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Why not make use of the mplayer.conf?

  2. Mike J said on August 1, 2010 at 2:58 pm

    Huh, I have never even seen this “font cache” pane; videos play at once for me, using VLC & XP SP3.

    1. Martin said on August 1, 2010 at 3:39 pm

      Mike, in theory this should have only been displayed once to you, at the very first video that you played with VLC. The time this window is displayed depends largely on the number of fonts in your font directory.

      1. Mike J said on August 2, 2010 at 2:30 pm

        huh, I lucked out for a change?? Amazing!!
        Apparently VLC keeps this info through version updates, but I didn’t see this message after a fresh OS install about 8 weeks ago, & a new VLC.

  3. myo said on August 1, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    yes, yes, i have the same problem. sometimes, VLC crashes when it is playing .mov file.

  4. Kishore said on August 13, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    Buidling font Cache pop-up


    Open VLC player.

    On Menu Bar:


    (at bottom – left side)
    Show settings — ALL

    Open: Video
    Click: Subtitles/OSD (This is now highlited, not opened)
    Text rendering module – change this to “Dummy font renderer function”


    Re-open – done.
    Progam will no longer look outside self for fonts

    Source – WorthyTricks.co.cc

    1. Martin said on August 13, 2010 at 3:10 pm

      Great tip, thanks a lot Kishore.

  5. javier said on August 14, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    @Kishore, I’ll try your tips, but does this mean it will no longer show subtitles either?
    I do use subtitles, but the fontcache dialog box pops up (almost) everytime I play a file.

    Could this be related to the fonts I have installed? Or if I add/remove fonts to my system?

    I’ll try to do a fresh install also, if your tips does no work. I’ll post back here later…


  6. Kishore said on August 15, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    @ Javier, The trick i posted will show up subtitles too. If not,

  7. Kishore said on August 15, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    @ Javier, The trick i posted will show up subtitles too. If not,Dont worry, VLC is currently sorting out this issue and the next version will be out soon.

    No probs @ Martin !! Its my pleasure

  8. Ted said on October 22, 2010 at 3:57 am

    Try running LC with administrator privileges. That seemed to fix it for me

  9. Evan said on December 8, 2013 at 1:48 am

    I am using SMplayer 0.8.6 (64-bit) (Portable Edition) on Windows 7 x64. Even with the -nofontconfig parameter in place SMplayer still scans the fonts. Also, I have enabled normal subtitles and it is still scanning fonts before playing a video. Also, it does this every time the player opens a video after a system restart (only the fist video played).

  10. Mike Williams said on September 6, 2023 at 1:26 pm

    Does that mean that only instrumental versions of songs will be available for non-paying users?

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