DAPlayer is a multimedia player for the MS Windows platform. It’s a proprietary application, but is completely free to use, supports almost all the popular audio/video codecs out of the box and is pretty user friendly too. Although one won’t finds it that often with proprietary tools, but DAPlayers also bypasses all DVD region code requests (like VLC).

A beautiful looking skin (two actually), audio equalizer, few video enhancing filters, playlist … it’s all there. The developers claim that it’s pre-optimized for Blu-Ray/HD video playback on never CPU architectures thus the power consumption should be also somewhat lower too (due to less CPU usage). But while I was playing a video (1280×544, H.264), it used a bit more of my CPU than both Windows media player and KMPlayer did.

But then again, I think the video quality was slightly better. Other than that, it worked really well and has few built in beautiful audio visualizations and excellent subtitle rendering on the bright side as well :).

Few main features …

*. As mentioned in the beginning, supports almost all the popular audio/video codecs and container formats such as: MP3, Ogg Vorbis, AAC, FLAC, WAV, WMA, WMV, H.264/263, AVI, Xvid, Divx, OGM, MKV, MPEG 1/2/4, Real audio/video codecs etc.

*. DVD playback with menus.

*. Built in audio equalizer.

*. Change Brightness, Hue, Saturation, aspect ratio, zoom, de-interlace, flip video and few other video related settings.

*. Media info window that shows advanced codec details (codec ID, resolution, bitrates, encoders used to encode the file, sample rate etc).

*. Change subtitle settings (fonts, sizes, colors, add borders & shadows, automatic language detection etc).

*. Enable/Disable file association with ease.

*. Load lyrics when playing audio tracks.

*. Change hot-key associations.

*. Show/hide playlist (shows track name, duration, album, artist, file size etc when you move your mouse over the items).

*. Fade audio volume levels when closing, pausing and changing tracks.

*. Delay (+/-) audio/video playback (a very useful feature, if you have a multimedia file where audio track comes before the video track, gun shot firing sounds before the “video action” for instance, yikes! :P).

These are some of its main features to mention.

If interested, you can get it from this DAPlayer home page.

Any other issues?

Well unfortunately there’s one issue which I think is pretty important. Whenever you play a video file (does not apply for audios), DAPlayer loads a file called “dap.dll” and it usually takes about 50-83MB (goes up/down depending on the video file) of your RAM. And then there’s another file called “DAPlayer.exe” (its main engine) which usually takes about 25-30MB of your RAM (the same while playing both audio & video files).

So all together, DAPlayer needs about 85-100+MB of your RAM when playing a video.

And depending on the video file (resolution, bitrate, codec or the quality in general) “dap.dll” will have a lower or a higher value. So I think actually is a video caching mechanism. This is not something necessarily bad as even MS Windows player (plus almost all the media players) too uses a similar approaches while playing, and as a result it too uses a decent amount of your RAM (at least in my Vostro V131).

But then again, perhaps that caching could help it to reduce some of the system’s load, or HDD activity thus saving some battery life (perhaps). So it’s hard to say whether it’s really a drawback or not.

Anyhow, other than that, I experienced smooth playback, beautifully designed UI (quite simple & intuitive) good responsive times and slightly better looking video outputs. So, for a completely free multimedia player, DAPlayer is a pretty decent software application. However, I still prefer KMPlayer as it uses a bit less of your system resources plus gives you a lot of features, and it’s too of course is completely free!.

But then again, I don’t know how well it does while playing Blu-Ray (which is becoming vastly popular), so even though it uses slightly higher amount of RAM, but if you have never and powerful PC, then perhaps you might wanna try DAPlayer and see it for yourself if it lives up to its claims ;-). Good luck.