How to Open MXF Files

By Stephen Lilley

i Pixland/Pixland/Getty Images

The MXF file extension is an abbreviation for "Material Exchange Format." Files in this format are a type of media file (either audio or video, depending on the specifics of a file) designed to be played on a computer. You can access MXF files by adding a few different pieces of software to your computer. You can pick between special media programs that support the MXF format, or you can install specialized codecs that support this format.

Step 1

Use VLC Media Player (see References 1). VLC Media Player is a lightweight media utility that won't use a lot of your computer's available system resources while playing video files. Among the many different types of audio and video formats supported by this program is the MXF format, so once you have VLC Media Player installed on your computer just drag your MXF file over top of the main program window to get it to play.

Step 2

Use XFReader (see References 2). XFReader is a media playing program that is designed specifically to play MXF files. It is not meant as a replacement for the regular media player software that you use. XFReader is a program that you will ultimately need to buy if you plan on using it on a continual basis. However, there is a 30 day fully functional trial version available on its official website.

Step 3

Install the Avid Quicktime Codecs Light Edition 1.2.0 codec package (see References 3). The Avid Quicktime Codecs Light Edition 1.2.0 adds support for a variety of formats (including MXF files) to your system. It is intended to be used on computers running the Avid video editing software; however, because the codec information is installed in the System32 directory on your computer, all installed media programs that did not previously support the MXF file format will now be able to play them with no problem.