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Group test: what's the best media-player software?

The best software to play music and video

PC Advisor reviews the best media player software you can install today.

5. AK-Player 7

AK-Player 7
  • Reviewed on: 28 May 12
  • RRP: FREE
  • Rating: Rated 6 out of 10

AK-Player 7 is free and no one should complain when someone puts in hard work and donates it for the public good. It's worth the download just to watch it launch. After that, the experience, unfortunately, is merely average, though promising for the future.

4. RealPlayer

RealPlayer
  • Reviewed on: 30 September 10
  • RRP: Free
  • Rating: Rated 8 out of 10

The new RealPlayer retains the handy features found in previous versions that let you upload files directly to sites like Facebook and YouTube. You also can choose to download video files from websites directly to your RealPlayer library. These are all nice touches, but not enough to make RealPlayer a must have. But if you own an Android, BlackBerry, or Nokia phone, however, and have been looking for a free and easy way to manage its multimedia files, the new RealPlayer will make your life a whole lot easier.

3. Nero 11

Nero 11
  • Reviewed on: 18 November 11
  • RRP: £69 inc VAT for the standard version; £89 inc VAT for the Platinum edition
  • Rating: Rated 7 out of 10

The Nero 11 multimedia burning suite is as powerful as they come, and friendlier than its predecessors by far, but the new look isn't pervasive.

2. Apple iTunes 10

  • Reviewed on: 3 September 10
  • RRP: Free
  • Rating: Rated 8 out of 10

The marquee feature, Ping, is promising, for those interested in the concept. Some of the space-saving interface changes are useful, but the Windowsization of parts of the iTunes interface, the blandness of the monochromatic icons, and the additional white in some of its views make the program look much more drab than its previous version. iTunes 10 has a somewhat Soviet utilitarian look which, to the author's eyes, makes it less interesting to work with. Since it’s one of the programs we use a lot, we’ll miss those splashes of colour in the sidebar, and especially the ability to display artwork at the size we want.

1. CyberLink PowerDVD 12 Ultra

CyberLink PowerDVD 12 Ultra
  • Reviewed on: 12 March 12
  • RRP: £98 inc. VAT
  • Rating: Rated 8 out of 10

The best DVD/Blu-ray player software available is morphing into an organizer/player for all types of media. It's not cheap, and it utilises a lot of your PC's resource, but there is no better media software out there.

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