Windows won’t play GoPro videos [Fixed]

GoPro is a company that manufactures action video cameras. The cameras are capable of capturing videos up to 4K. However, there have been issues with GoPro video playbacks in Windows 10. Most of these issues are related to missing codecs or video compression mode used by GoPro cameras.

GoPro Camera

GoPro has a slightly different file format as compared to other normal videos. There are only rare chances that the video fails to play because of the corruption of the game file.

Solution 1: Install Codec Pack

With the new Windows 10 update, the support for HEVC (H.265 or High-Efficiency Video Coding) was removed. This causes the computer to be unable to render the video and only the audio plays in the background. The solution is to download the K-Lite codec pack. This codec pack is for audio and video formats not supported by the current OS.

  1. Go to the official K-Lite website.
    K-Lite Codec Packages
  2. Download the codec pack according to your requirements.
  3. You can also install supporting software. Restart your computer and check if the issue is resolved.

Solution 2: Use VLC Media Player

VLC media player is one of the best open-source and free media players out there. It supports a phenomenal amount of video formats, with frequent updates for different video formats. If your operating system doesn’t support the video format of GoPro videos, this application surely will.

  1. Go to the official VLC Media Player Website.
    VLC Media Player Download
  2. Then download the latest version. Restart your computer, right-click on the VLC file, select Open with and then select VLC Media Player.

If you are already using VLC check and see if you have the latest version. VLC rolls out updates regarding the latest codecs and formats it can support.

  1. Open VLC. On the Menu, bar go to Help and then click Check for Updates.
    Check for Updates

VLC will automatically check if an update is available for your version or not.

Update Available

Solution 3: Shoot at Lower Resolution

Videos shot at 4K or 2.7K rely on a lot of processing power to run. If you are not into professional movie making and editing, it would be best to shoot at a lower resolution like 1080p at 30 or 60fps. The video is pretty clear and the difference is not noticeable.

Solution 4: Upgrade your PC

As explained above, GoPro videos shot at 4K or 2.7K require a lot of processing power and are heavily reliant on either your CPU or dedicated GPU. If you want to enter the professional world of video editing you might want to upgrade your PC, to something a little better. Here is a list of system requirements for GoPro video editing.

GoPro Video Editing Requirements

GoPro videos have a lot of information and they require strong processing power to load them properly in your graphics modules. If you have a really low specification computer, consider upgrading it. You can also see the requirements in GoPro’s forums.

Solution 5: Run in Compatibility Mode

The official software provided by GoPro is GoPro Studio. However, this software has been discontinued and is no longer updated. If you are using this to run the GoPro videos, you might need to run it in compatibility mode. Even though it should run without the compatibility mode as well, we came across instances where enabling it worked instantly.

  1. Right-click on the Studio icon and then click on Properties.
  2. Now navigate to Compatibility and select ‘Run this program in compatibility mode for’.
    Run in Compatibility Mode
  3. Select Windows 8 from the drop-down options, save changes, and exit. Restart your computer and check if the issue is resolved.

Solution 6: Convert to H.264 using HandBrake

The most common reason for the issue with the GoPro video playback is lack of compatibility with the video compression that the camera uses which is H.265. The best possible solution is to convert the video to the most common video format which is H.264 MP4. We will convert using HardBrake. This is a third-party software so make sure you install it at your own risk.

  1. Download the software HandBrake from the official website.
  2. Once installed, click on Open Source to add the file.
    Open Source to Add File(s)
  3. Change the preset to the one according to your requirements.
    Encoding Presets
  4. Choose the destination and save the file in Save As by clicking Browse. After saving the file, try playing it and see if the issue is resolved for good.

Solution 7: Compatible + HEVC or H.264 + HEVC Compression on HERO7 Black

In the Preferences for the HERO7, there is an option to choose either HEVC video compression or H.264 + HEVC. This setting allows the camera to record videos in H.264 whenever it is available. Make sure that you enable this option when shooting videos. This option, however, does not matter when shooting higher resolution videos in 4K60.


Kevin Arrows

Kevin Arrows is a highly experienced and knowledgeable technology specialist with over a decade of industry experience. He holds a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification and has a deep passion for staying up-to-date on the latest tech developments. Kevin has written extensively on a wide range of tech-related topics, showcasing his expertise and knowledge in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. His contributions to the tech field have been widely recognized and respected by his peers, and he is highly regarded for his ability to explain complex technical concepts in a clear and concise manner.