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.VOB File Extension

Perhaps you’re wondering what the .vob format stands for? Or you’re familiar with the extension, but not entirely sure how to play .vob files? You’ve come to the right place. We’re here to describe the purpose of VOB files and why they may be difficult to play on your Mac. And most important, to tell you what VOB player for Mac you can use to overcome any compatibility issues.

What is a VOB file?

VOB (or Video Object) files that DVDs use, which contain essential information. They serve as containers for data such as the actual video, as well as the audio, subtitles, DVD menus and navigation contents. You’ll typically find .vob files in the VIDEO_TS folder at the root of a DVD. The VOB file type is closely related to MPEG-2 and files may contain MPEG-2 video, as well as AC-3, DTS, or MP2 audio.

Most DVDs feature some form of restriction or copy protection, which also applies to VOB files. They’re encrypted, in order to stop them from being copied directly from DVD discs. As a result, if you copy a DVD video to a hard drive, an error will occur. There are decrypting programs which can open VOB files without the original authentication keys, but their use is banned by certain legislations.

What is VOB?

The VOB format: strengths and weaknesses

icon pros Pros

  • Very high quality video
  • Contains large amounts of information
  • Allows you to choose from audio streams and subtitles in different languages
  • Could be played on DVD players and computers

icon cons Cons

  • Large in size (up to 1 GB per file)
  • Cannot be streamed or networks or uploaded to YouTube, Facebook, etc.
  • Cannot be edited in iMovie, Movie Maker, etc.
  • Cannot be easily copied due to encryption
  • QuickTime and Windows Media Player may have trouble opening .vob files

How to open VOB files?

This brings us to the important question - what plays VOB files on Mac or PC?

On macOS, the best solution to opening VOB files is by using Elmedia Player. Not only does it support the format and play it without additional codecs or plug-ins, but it also comes with various additional benefits. For example, Elmedia offers enhanced performance due to its M1 chip support. There are numerous advanced playback options as well - from fine picture adjustments and audio delay, to subtitle settings and visual effects. Last but not least, Elmedia Player has powerful streaming capabilities - cast your local files to Apple TV, Smart TVs, speakers via AirPlay, Chromecast and DLNA.

Best VOB Player for Mac

How to play a VOB file in 3 easy steps:

1. Download and run Elmedia Player on your Mac.

Download VOB Player for Mac

2. Add your VOB file in one of the following ways:

  • Drag and drop your file onto the Elmedia player window or directly onto its icon in the Dock;
  • Right-click the VOB file, then tap "Open With” and choose Elmedia Player from the list;
  • Open the player’s Main Menu, choose File > Open and locate your desired VOB file in the VIDEO_TS folder.
Open VOB files with Elmedia

3. Enjoy your VOB video file!

On Windows, you can open .VOB files with VLC Player, a lightweight open-source app which has been very popular over the years. While it’s not as customizable as Elmedia, it is easy to use and offers all the essential features you may need. You can tweak video and audio playback, synchronize your subtitles, and more.

To open a VOB file, click on Media > Open Folder > browse to find your VOB file.


So, if you’re still wondering what is a VOB file and how do I play it, take a look at the info below. If you still have questions after reading, please feel free to let us know in the comment section. We’ll do our best to reply ASAP.

The short answer is ‘yes’. Yes, you can. There are many free converters out there that you can use to convert VOB to MP4 or other media formats. We recommend using Movavi Video Converter.

To convert a VOB file, please follow these steps:

  1. Drag and drop your VOB file into the app. Alternatively, you can click "Add File".
  2. Select your preferred output format (e.g. MP4, MOV, M4V).
  3. To start the conversion, click the "Convert" button.

To skip downloading additional software on your Mac, you can simply use the web-based version at

On macOS, a good option to open the VOB file format is by using Elmedia Player. It’s a free VOB player Mac application and you won’t need to bother with additional codecs or plug-ins. You can select language, encoding, subtitle settings, etc. There is also streaming and other advanced functionalities available.

On Windows: when it comes to PC, VLC is a good way to go. VLC is a free open-source app, which can play all sorts of audio and video files. It will allow you to play DVD menus, special features, chapters, and other attributes incorporated into your VOB file(s).

Yes, they can. The Elmedia Player app allows you to stream VOB files to your TV set.

Just follow these simple steps:

  1. Switch on your Smart TV.
  2. Next, download Elmedia Player to your computer. Unpack and install it as you would with any app on Mac.
  3. Select which VOB file you’d like to stream.
  4. Play the file with Elmedia Player.
  5. In Elmedia Player’s control panel, click the streaming icon to the left. Then, you will see a drop-down list of available devices - click on the name of your TV (or another device of your choice).
  6. Watch, enjoy, repeat!
To play VOB files, use Elmedia Player on macOS or the VLC player for Windows. To then play VOB on DVD players, you can burn the VOB files on a DVD disc. Note that this is only a viable option unless the VOB files are encrypted.
You most certainly can. The QuickTime player native to macOS may have trouble with the VOB file format, but third-party players can save the day. Our weapons of choice in opening VOB on Mac would be Elmedia Player, 5KPlayer or IINA.
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