Video playback

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Home icon grey.png   ▶ Video library
▶ Settings
▶ Video playback

The main feature of Kodi is playing back videos. This page describes the controls, features, and settings related to video playback.


1 On screen display (OSD)

OSD.videos.Confluence zoom.png

When playing a video full screen you can bring up the on-screen-display controls by pressing  Enter or M or on remote the OK (or the equivalent button on your remote control).

  1. Previous
  2. Rewind
  3. Play/Pause
  4. Stop
  5. Fast Forward
  6. Next
  7. Scrub bar (touch/clickable)

A. Subtitle downloader (via add-on)
B. Video settings
C. Audio and subtitle settings
D. Bookmarks
E. DVD Menu (if playing back a DVD disc or ISO)

2 Mini player controls

While in the GUI you are able to browse all of Kodi and even look at pictures while playing music or videos. During GUI playback you can call up the Mini player controls at any time. In the default skin Confluence, you can do this two ways:

2.1 Sidebar

Mini player sidebar-video.png

While the sidebar tab is present and while media is playing, bringing up the sidebar/blade menu by navigating to the left will reveal a small selection of player controls.

2.2 Window

Mini player window-video-cropped.png

A pop-up window with mini player controls can be brought up in Confluence while media is playing. For a keyboard press M while video is playing in the background.

3 OSD audio and subtitle settings

Allows you to adjust the playback volume
Volume amplification
Additional audio amplification that is then limited/compressed at a certain threshold to prevent clipping.
Audio offset
Adjusts how long that the audio is delayed in relation to the video. This is useful when viewing poorly synced videos.
Audio stream
If the video file contains more than one audio stream you can select them here.
Stereo upmix
Outputs stereo to all speakers
Audio output
Select output device for the current stream
Enable subtitles
Enable or disables subtitles. Subtitle tracks with the "forced" flag are unaffected by this and should always display.
Subtitle offset
Adjusts how long that the subtitles are delayed in relation to the video
Allows you select which subtitles are displayed
  • As of v12, Kodi will auto select subtitle language based on your global settings. Also - Set as default for all Movies is now Set as default for all Videos. See: Settings/Appearance#International.
Browse for subtitle
Allows you to browse the filesystem for the file used to display the subtitles
Set as default for all videos
Selecting this will make the current settings the default

4 OSD video settings

Deinterlace video
Auto / On / Off
Deinterlace method
  • Auto select - Tries to guess the best method.
  • DeInterlace -
  • None
  • Editor note: need updated deinterlace methods listed here.
Video scaling method
Changes the size of a video frame in order to match the resolution of the display device. All methods here are non-adaptive so they may produce different amount of aliasing, blurring and edge halos. There are no best methods it’s up to personal taste what method you should use. The methods are:
Crop black bars
Choosing this will crop any black bars encoded at the top, bottom or sides of your video. This will fix some issues with videos being displayed at the incorrect aspect ratio.
View mode
Allows you to choose how the video is displayed. The options are:
Zoom amount
Allows you to control how much that the view is zoomed into the video.
Vertical shift
Determines the amount a the video is shifted up on vertical axys on current display (helpful for projectors)
Pixel ratio
Allows you to adjust the pixel ratio that the video is displayed at. This can be used to adjust videos that are not displaying at the proper aspect ratio.
Basically puts an unsharpen mask over the image to reduce pixellation/macroblocking on low-res/low-bitrate videos
Adjust brightness
Adjust contrast
[VDPAU] Noise reduction (only visible when VDPAU is in use)
Select level of noise reduction for video content
[VDPAU] Sharpness (only visible when VDPAU is in use)
Select sharpness amount to apply to video content
Non-linear stretch
When enabled the stretching method doesn't look so wide in middle of video area ?
Stereoscopic mode of video
Stereoscopic mode inverted

Set as default for all videos
Selecting this will make the current settings the default
Video calibration
Opens the Video calibration window

5 Bookmarks and chapters


6 Subtitles

Kodi supports both stand-alone subtitle and embedded subtitles. Most major subtitle formats are supported. Kodi can also search and download subtitles directly from full screen playback.

7 Skip steps

Skip steps is a new seeking function that has been implemented into Kodi as of v15, and is a method of additive skipping (also known as additive seeking) that applies to both videos and music. This allows the user to skip backwards and forwards with the left and right cursor keys (this is the default keyboard and remote mapping), and by pressing these keys multiple times they can skip with increasingly larger steps.

8 Internet video and audio streams

Various internet video and audio streams can be played back in Kodi as if they were locally stored on your media center by using STRM files. As long as the format and streaming-method (network-protocol) is supported by Kodi, stream can be added. These are basic text files that look like <name>.strm and contain a URL to the internet stream. STRM files can also be added to the video library and can have cover art, summaries, etc.

Some internet sites may have an add-on available that can also access these media streams, rather than having to manually create STRM files. See Add-ons for more information on how to find and install add-ons.

9 Playlists

  • Basic playlists - Kodi supports both basic playlists and smart playlists. A basic playlist is a normal text file that lists one or more media files (Audio or Video), and plays them in succession. You can either create your own or use existing playlists from other sources, such as a playlist generated from Winamp, iTunes, or other sources. Basic playlists can be created and edited directly from Kodi's GUI.
  • Smart playlists - Kodi supports smart playlists for all types of media (excluding pictures), which essentially use a set of rules to limit the results from the databases. This means that to be able to create a smart playlist in the GUI, music/video must first be added to the libraries using a scraper addon or by creating NFO files. Smart playlist can be created either by using the built-in GUI smart playlist editor accessible from the Playlists section, or by creating an XML file with the extension XSP (XBMC Smart Playlist).

10 UPnP

Kodi has several built-in UPnP A/V (Universal Plug and Play Audio Visual) features, including the ability to receive UPnP and DLNA content pushed to Kodi, browse UPnP and DLNA media sources, sharing a Kodi library with other UPnP and DLNA devices, and even controlling UPnP and DLNA devices. UPnP is also the easiest way to share a library from one Kodi device to another.

11 AirPlay

As of v11 (Eden), Kodi has very limited support for being an AirPlay target, allowing any device/platform that can run Kodi to receive some AirPlay content.

12 3D

Starting in v13, Kodi supports a number of passive 3D video formats such as SBS, TAB, anaglyph or interlaced. This support extends to the Kodi GUI including subtitles and on-screen-controls.

13 On-Screen Video Diagnostics

Video playback with Codec Info enabled

On Screen Video Diagnostics, or Codec Info, can be displayed when a video is playing by pressing O, or the corresponding control on your remote.

A detailed explanation of the displayed values can be found on the Codecinfo page.

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