Best Free Windows 64-bit Software - Page Index
Multimedia applications are generally popular and interesting so it is no surprise that there are several excellent 64-bit products.
Daum PotPlayer is "feature packed, easy to use and provides awesome video and audio quality. Some may call it KMPlayerRedux with more stability and versatility. … PotPlayer truly stands out for supporting a wide variety of formats and having extensive configuration settings. It includes a long list of built-in audio and video codecs that enable you to play almost any media format you can dream about. PotPlayer has a simple and sleek interface though not mind-blowing and has high quality playback. The player is light on system resources and has a very fast startup." (Best Free Media Player)
MPC-HC, like its predecessor, Media Player Classic, "is an incredibly small program but has a vast feature set." … Under the hood, this program packs a lot of features, including codecs for viewing DVD discs, MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG 4 and x.264 movie files, MP3 and Ogg files. It can also use the QuickTime and the RealPlayer architectures (if installed on the computer) to play their native files. To further extend its functionality while avoiding the installation of RealPlayer, WinAmp and Quicktime, you will have to download some codec packs.… MPC Home Cinema requires no installation on your PC. This means that it can be run from your USB flash drive as well as your hard drive. (Best Free Media Player)
For those who use Apple devices, iTunes has a 64-bit version.
"iTunes has become more prevalent on many PCs due to the almost universal reach of the iPod, but it also uses a lot of resources and is processor intensive." (Best Free Media Player, It also gets a dismissive mention in Best Free Music Player) I am less restrained when I say iTunes is a hog and a dog. Much of that bloat seems to arise from Apple's distrust of Windows which showed in the need to bring almost everything with iTunes except the kitchen sink.
On the positive side, if you are going to run 'bloatware' then you're much better off doing it on a 64-bit system. I happily admit to being a long-time user of iTunes. All my children use it and it works very well with the media player on my non-Apple cell phone. Over several years of use I've had no problems with it and I'm not exasperated by any of its much-maligned issues (e.g. I use Autoruns to stop the unneeded applications). This new version has improved slightly but you won't see it in the interface. First, it is 64-bit. Second, I no longer need QuickTime. Third, for the 32-bit version, the download and footprint are noticeably smaller.
"Maintaining your media library is simple joy with XBMC. Point to a folder containing your files, indicate what type of files there are (Movies, TV Shows, etc.) and XBMC does the rest. It scans all subfolders and files and downloads all relevant information (text, thumbnails, sounds, etc) from the Internet." On the other hand, it has some idiosyncracies. "Most annoying for me still is that you cannot freely pick a position in your media file by clicking on the progress bar while it is playing. Instead you have to type in a time position via the keyboard. Don't ask me why the simplest media player can do that but most of the Media Center Software cannot." (Best Free Media Centre)
"As far as single track editing goes, there is very little that cannot be achieved with Audacity, and achieved easily and cleanly. As far as physical drive space goes, Audicity is a small installation, but an immensely powerful one. Really though, track editing is just the tip of the iceberg with this application: it's functionality for editing is balanced with it's equally powerful functionality for recording, and also applying effects and modifications to existing audio tracks." (Best Free Audio Editing Software)
"Avidemux is a free open-source program designed for multi-purpose video editing and processing … Avidemux lets you do just about everything under the sun. It supports many file types, including AVI, DVD compatible MPEG files, MP4 and ASF, using a variety of codecs." Its main weakness may well be its dated interface. (Best Free Video Editor)
"LMMS is a free open source MIDI sequencer/composer for Windows and Linux. … I initially found it a little bewildering … but it's worth taking the time because the rewards are great. … As a stand alone application, one would be hard pressed to find a more comprehensively full featured and versatile free music creator than this. There are so many instruments and effects to choose from … YOU NEED TO TRY THIS SOFTWARE!" (Best Free Music Creation Software)
Christian Kindahl's InfraRecorder is a GUI for CDRTools. It "supports all of the common features that a good burning application should have, and it works with all types of CDs and DVDs including dual layer discs" but "It does not support Blu-Ray discs or HD-DVDs." "It even includes full command line support like CDBurnerXP. With InfraRecorder, you can burn and create images with support for bootable discs, author rewritable discs, and create audio CDs and video DVDs. The interface is clean and simple without a lot of extras to make things confused." (Best Free CD-DVD Burner)
InfraRecorder does not have some advanced options.and is not as helpful as ImgBurn: it does not give much assistance, important information is in the manual, dialogs and warnings are often cryptic, and the interface is inconsistent. For example, sometimes the instruction to insert a particular disk is in its own pop-up window but other times it will be in the title of the current one.
If you read other users' comments you will see that they either love it because it works flawlessly or hate it because it converts their disks into coasters. It seems likely that CDRTools has problems working with some burners which would explain why I had consistent problems on my test system . Even so, I still recommend that you try it out because it is native 64-bit and will probably work for you.
Imgburn "is the most powerful free burning, as no other software comes close to its advanced features and options." However, "ImgBurn's advanced features may confuse you if you just want to do a basic burn. The welcome menu provides quick access to some common tasks, but other basic features such as erasing a re-writable disc are not immediately visible." (Best Free CD-DVD Burner)
Ashampoo Burning Studio "is still simple and intuitive to use. For power, simplicity and file backup. … If you want a program that focuses on burning discs quickly and easily with quality and a minimum fuss then this could be the program may well suit your needs." (Best Free CD-DVD Burning Software)
I evaluated the free version but you can also install a much later version for a time-limited (30/40 day) trial. I recommend you do two things when installing Ashampoo Burning Studio. First, select "Custom installation" so you can uncheck the Ashampoo toolbar and search. Second, do not accept the upgrade offer when you run Ashampoo Burning Studio for the first time. The upgrade is for a time-limited trial of the latest version which has a large download of more than 300 MB. If you decide to uninstall it you may have to remove the free version also.
"MagicDisc, also known as MagicISO Virtual CD/DVD-ROM … allows you to run many types of CD/DVD images without burning them onto CDs or DVDs. It also allows you to create CD/DVD images from CDs/DVDs and save them into various formats including ISO, BIN/CUE, NRG, UIF.This program with a simple interface supports up to 15 virtual disk drives. Other features are available such as compress ISO, NRG, CUE, MDS and CCD formats into UIF format, or decompress UIF format into ISO format. The feature for burning images to disks is not supported." (Best Free CD-DVD Emulation Software)
HandBrake is rated best of class as a DVD Ripper. It "has a relatively small file size for all the features that it offers. Despite the slow speeds it transcodes … the transcoded video is surprisingly good quality for the amount of time it takes to rip. However, if you have a graphics driver installed that supports Open GL, it will take a rather small fraction of time to transcode the content. Handbrake produces an MPEG-4 file which is compatible with a wide range of media players. Note that you’ll need to have the right codecs installed for the type of file you wish to convert". For many of us the most useful feature is the "preconfigured profiles for Apple iPhone, iPad, iPod and Apple TV. It also provides numerous video and audio parameter settings for advanced users to alter the file size and video quality accordingly." (Best Free DVD Ripper)
Handbrake's main deficiency is that it does not convert copy-protected DVDs. So it can rip some but not all DVDs.