The “VLC could not open the mpga audio encoder” is an error you may encounter when trying to convert video files using the VLC media player. You may also encounter similar error with different audio or video encoder such as mp4v, mp4a, h264, hevc, mp2v, mp1v, wmv2, div3, and mjpeg. This issue is not restricted to audio files and often comes up when converting between video formats such as MKV to MP4.
In this article, we present a series of possible solutions that can help you overcome this issue. Each solution will be discussed in detail, highlighting the reasons why it might help in resolving the problem.
1. Change “Strict standard compliance” to -2
“Strict standard compliance” is a setting associated with FFmpeg, a versatile library used by VLC to handle multimedia data. This setting is designed to maintain strict compliance with multimedia standards, which, while beneficial, can occasionally lead to compatibility problems such as the “VLC could not open mpga audio encoder” issue when dealing with media files that don’t perfectly align with these standards. Adjusting this setting to “-2” relaxes the strictness, allowing VLC to process a wider variety of files.
Here’s how to modify this setting:
- Open VLC and navigate to “Tools” > “Preferences“.
- At the bottom of the Preferences window, change “Show settings” from “Simple” to “All“.
- In the left pane, navigate to “Input / Codecs” > “Video codecs” > “FFmpeg“.
- Set “Strict standard compliance” to “-2” on the right.
- Click “Save” and try the conversion again.
2. Enable “Keep original video track” and “Keep original audio track”
The VLC media player provides an option to keep the original video and audio tracks during the conversion process. By enabling these settings, VLC can bypass potential codec-related issues during the encoding process. In essence, it keeps the original video and audio streams, reducing the possibility of codec compatibility errors.
Follow these steps to enable this setting:
- Launch VLC and select “Media” > “Convert / Save…“.
- Add the video file you want to convert.
- Click on “Convert / Save” at the bottom.
- Choose the desired output profile under “Profile“.
- Click the tool icon next to the profile to edit it.
- Under the “Video codec” and “Audio codec” tabs, check the boxes for “Keep original video track” and “Keep original audio track” respectively.
- Click “Save“, and then attempt the conversion again.
Handy guide: How to Cut Video Using VLC in Windows 11
3. Use a different conversion profile
In VLC, conversion profiles are pre-configured settings designed for specific output formats. Sometimes, the issue might be with the chosen profile itself, which might have configurations that are incompatible with your file. Switching to a different profile could potentially resolve the problem.
Here’s how to do this:
- Follow the steps in Solution 2 to reach the “Convert” settings.
- Try a different conversion profile under the “Profile” dropdown.
- If the error persists, attempt using another profile.
Also see: How to Compress a Video in Windows 11
4. Use an alternative audio encoder
The “VLC could not open the mpga audio encoder” (or any other encoder error) might indicate an issue with the audio or video codec being used. If the selected encoder (in this case, MPGA) isn’t working as expected, changing to another encoder might be the solution.
Here’s how you can change the audio encoder:
- Follow the steps in Solution 2 to get to the “Convert” settings.
- Click on the tool icon next to your selected profile to edit it.
- Under the “Audio codec” tab, change the Codec to an alternative, such as “AAC” or “FLAC“.
- Click “Save” and attempt the conversion again.
Related resource: How to Move Subtitles in VLC Player
5. Reinstall VLC media player
If none of the previous solutions work, there’s a chance that the problem lies within the VLC installation itself. Corrupt files, altered settings, or other software-related issues can be resolved by reinstalling the program.
Here’s how to reinstall VLC:
- Uninstall VLC via the “Control Panel” > “Programs” > “Programs and Features“. Find VLC in the list, click on it, and then select “Uninstall“.
- Restart your computer after the uninstallation to ensure all VLC files are removed.
- Visit the official VLC website, download the latest version of VLC, and install it following the prompts.
- Try the conversion again after reinstalling VLC.
6. Use a different video converter
Should the error “VLC could not open the mpga audio encoder” (or any other encoder) persist even after implementing all the provided solutions, it might be worthwhile to consider using an alternative video converter. There are numerous other tools, like HandBrake, that offer conversion capabilities, and these might be better suited to your specific task.
Throughout the process of troubleshooting, it’s essential to bear in mind that different VLC versions may have varying settings and feature implementations. Therefore, if you can’t locate a particular setting mentioned in this guide, it might be due to version differences. Keeping your VLC player updated to the latest version ensures you have the most recent features and bug fixes, often enhancing the software’s overall performance and compatibility with various codecs.
It’s also important to remember that while VLC is a powerful tool for media playback and conversion, it might not always be the ideal solution for every conversion task. Issues such as “VLC could not open the mpga/mp4v/mp4a audio encoder” might sometimes be easier to resolve by using dedicated conversion software, particularly for more complex tasks. Tools like HandBrake offers extensive conversion options that may provide a smoother experience depending on your needs.