8 Best MKV Players for Mac in 2023

About MKV file format

MKV files are tricky – there’s no telling how it may be encoded. That’s why a good MKV player should be able to decode any video or audio track. But there’s more you can get from a high-quality app – the features may improve your viewing experience, and even allow you to do additional things – for example, streaming. You can see it all in our list.

Users situation:

“Please recommend the best apps for playing .mkv files on my M2 MacBook Air”, – Reddit

Let’s take a look at MKV players that we’ve collected to help you choose the best one for you.

Comparison Table (Free & Paid Versions of Players)

In our list, you will find free players as well as those that have a paid (Pro) version. Here you can see the difference between the free and paid versions of the apps.

Elmedia PlayerMovistCisdem Video PlayerMacgo Blu-ray Player
Plays MKV✅ (Free)✅ (Free)✅ (Free)✅ (Pro)
Subtitle support✅ (Free)✅ (Free)✅ (Free)✅ (Pro)
Convert multimedia files to desired formats✅ (Pro)
Create, customize, and manage playlist✅ (Free)✅ (Free)
Hardware-accelerated and additional codec-free✅ (Free)✅ (Free)✅ (Free)✅ (Pro)

1.Free MKV Player for Mac – Elmedia Player

Looking for the ultimate MKV player on macOS? Need to play other formats, like MOV, AVI, and WMV? Elmedia Player will open almost any media file on the newest Apple M1 Macs. When watching MKV, you can open external audio and subtitles, and sync them up with the video. Playlists and bookmarks will make it easier to manage your media, mark chapters, or simply leave a movie to come back and watch it later.

Elmedia MKV Player for Mac

Elmedia PRO is a significant upgrade, enhancing the player with many customizable options. After purchasing the PRO license, you can use the 10-band equalizer and apply visual effects in the video tuner, including useful tools like color correction and deinterlacing. You can also stream your videos over AirPlay 2, DLNA, and Chromecast.

  • Compatibility with most formats and MKV codecs
  • Configurable audio and video
  • One-click streaming
  • Easy to use
  • Works on the newest systems
  • Full upgrade costs money

License: free to use, PRO upgrade priced at $19.99

App Store Rating: 4.5/5

 Latest update (at the time of writing): July 20, 2023

2.VLC Mac MKV Player

VLC (formerly VideoLan Client) comes with plenty of codecs out of the box. As a result, it has no issues with MKV videos. The multitude of playback options makes it possible to configure every aspect of video, audio, and subtitle playback. In addition, VLC supports MKV chapters and other such features.

VLC as MKV Player for Mac

On the other hand, finding the right options can be difficult, since many are hidden in sizable menus, and mixed with other, less useful settings. Sometimes, the options are unexplained, or they have an unclear description. Nonetheless, it’s one of the best options to play MKV right now. And it’s not hard to just open it and load a file.

  • Will play almost anything, including DVDs
  • Advanced settings for the perfect setup
  • Completely free to use, no ads
  • May be hard to navigate
  • Useful settings blend in with the niche ones

License: free and open-source

User rating: 4.2 out of 5 on CNET

Latest update (at the time of writing): Oct 14, 2023


5KPlayer offers a lot for free – viewing, customization, streaming, and downloading don’t require you to activate or purchase anything. But it’s not completely free – the player features ads in the interface, and it launches on startup, without any easily accessible ways to disable this behavior.

5KPlayer opens MKV files

Despite that, it’s a pretty usable player that offers many premium features without any sort of payment. 5KPlayer can, indeed, open MKV and lots of other file types. It’s capable of HD playback, if not UHD. Depending on what you expect from an MKV player for Mac, some things may be missing, but the added streaming and downloading functionality may make up for it.

  • Free streaming and downloads
  • Supports a wide range of codecs
  • Great feature set
  • Limited options
  • Contains ads
  • Doesn’t require a lot of resources

License: freeware

User rating: 2.9 out of 5 on Trustpilot

Latest update (at the time of writing): Oct 27, 2021


Movist doesn’t include any fancy features, such as streaming, or video filters. It can simply play any FFmpeg codec, which is more than enough for MKV. Movist is a cheap, reliable player that has a reasonable amount of settings for everyday viewing or listening. For example, it has an audio equalizer and subtitle sync.

Movist as MKV player

The “sliding panel” design is unusual, and it has its benefits. You can access a large portion of Movist’s functionality without clicking through menus or memorizing hotkeys. It’s a breath of fresh air compared to the uniform interfaces in other players.

  • Simple and feature-rich
  • Unique interface
  • Excellent playback quality
  • Multiple tracks simultaneously
  • No free trial

License: paid, $4.99

App Store Rating: 4.3/5

Latest update (at the time of writing): Nov 28, 2021

5.Cisdem Video Player

Cisdem provides a minimal experience, lacking many settings that are otherwise common in media players. This includes playback speed, bookmarks, audio equalization, track syncing, etc. However, it has enough to open and view MKV files.

Cisdem Video Player

Cisdem allows you to open additional audio or subtitle tracks, and also to create playlists. More importantly, you can do it for free, since video conversion is the only feature that requires paid activation. And, as a commercial product, it’s a lot safer than a freeware app.

  • Plays MKV
  • Free to try
  • Full control over video playback
  • Customize video playback and create screenshots
  • Extremely simplistic
  • Many important features missing

License: free, with a $19.99 upgrade available

App Store Rating: 4.1/5

Latest update (at the time of writing): Nov 11, 2022


This Mac MKV player can be configured in many different ways. This includes subtitle colors and fonts, video color correction, playback speed, sound equalizer, tips for operation buttons and more. Not to mention, OmniPlayer can stream over AirPlay and DLNA. Most of these features can be accessed for free.

OmniPlayer supports MKV files

It’s not all perfect, though. Users note that some conveniences are missing. For instance, you can’t use the scroll wheel to change the volume. Also, it should be noted that the free version contains ads, and the calls to leave a review and a rating may stay even after purchasing the VIP upgrade.

  • Full control over subtitles, audio, video
  • Convenience features, such as progress bar preview thumbnails
  • Purchase or subscription required to access all features
  • Ads and constant reminders to rate and review

License: free with paid options

App Store Rating: 4.7/5

Latest update (at the time of writing): Oct 25, 2023


MKPlayer is another player allows you to play MKV files on Mac as well as other file formats. Along with flawless playback, it provides a range of features including a responsive control panel, AirPlay support, subtitle settings.

It's MKV Player for Mac that supports a wide range of formats

The application can integrate alternative audio tracks and multilingual subtitles. It handles media container files and allows you to add custom subtitles to videos as well. Besides, you can adjust the video image by changing the brightness, contrast, and saturation. The player also comes with a Safari extension that lets you play media found on websites in MKPlayer.

  • Compatible with most formats
  • Responsive control panel layout
  • AirPlay support
  • Can play videos on any Smart TV and Apple TV.
  • Some features need to be unlocked with in-app purchases.

License: free, has in-app purchases

App Store Rating: 4.6/5

Latest update (at the time of writing): Aug 14, 2021

8.Macgo Blu-ray Player

If you want to play MKV files with ease and enjoy all your videos in top quality and comfort, the Macgo Blu-Ray Player should be on your solutions shortlist. It enables playback for Blu-ray, DVDs, and other formats compatible with Mac and Microsoft Windows.

It’s one of the Mac Blu-ray software licensed by the Blu-ray Disc Association, it fully supports the Blu-ray menu and 5.1 surround decoding for an ultimate home-theatre experience. You can fine-tune the video and audio settings to perfection, and the hardware acceleration ensures smooth playback for even the trickiest files.

Macgo Blu-ray Player

Lastly, it comes in multiple languages and allows you to play Blu-ray materials on iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch, as well as share video information on Social Media – Facebook and X.

  • Excellent compatibility with macOS and iOS devices
  • Wide list of features and settings
  • Supports 1080p HD playback without quality loss
  • It’s quite expensive for a Blu-ray playback software
  • The .mkv file format is only supported in the PRO version of the app

License: $29.95 (lifetime license), Pro version costs $39.95 (lifetime license)

User rating: 3.6/5 on CNET

Latest update (at the time of writing): October 12, 2023

What is an MKV File?

Matroska Video is an open container format that was developed to contain any amount of audio, video, and subtitle streams, in addition to XML metadata and images. MKV metadata can be used to delimit chapters, among other things. As any open-source project, it’s extensively documented, and the tools to create or edit MKV files are available for free.

What is MKV File

Currently, MKV does not enjoy the same popularity as MP4 or WMV. Matroska support may be difficult due to the possible variety of its contents. Still, Windows 10 already includes native support for MKV. It has the potential to become more widespread.

  • Tools and documentation available freely
  • Contents aren’t limited by number, size, or encoding
  • No licensing issues – FOSS
  • Can contain lossy and lossless data
  • Hard to support completely due to having no codec restrictions
  • Still in development; not all desired features are implemented
  • Isn’t backed by large organizations


We’ve reviewed the media players based on criteria such as usability, format availability, subtitle and audio/video settings, pricing. When it comes to choosing the best free MKV player for Mac, Elmedia Player stands out from the rest. It’s versatile, packed with handy features, and boasts compatibility with a range of file types.

We hope that this article helps you find the right app, play MKV files and enjoy the result. You can’t go wrong with any of the software from the list above, just choose the solution that suits you best.


This format provides lossless compression, offering higher video and audio quality. MKV is versatile and convenient: it is easy to work with – extract / add video files, audio files, images, etc. In addition, MKV is freely licensed, making it free to use and open to everyone.

MKV is not the standard, it is a container that can contain any video/audio formats. Apple focuses on standards used in the consumer electronics industry. Therefore, you are not able to open .mkv files in QuickTime that were created by Apple. Instead, you can use a media converter or players we’ve mentioned in this article.

Olga Weis
I am an internationally certified Freelance Technical Author/Embedded System Developer. I briefly studied computer science before starting a career in freelance software development. My expertise extends into Mac and iOS app development. Having worked extensively with iOS technologies, I’ve contributed… Full Bio