HamMultiPlayer is an interesting media player with some unusual features, including the ability to preview and work with multiple videos simultaneously.
The program doesn’t require any installation, and it doesn’t even arrive in an archive. It’s just a single executable you can download and run right away. The interface is initially confusing with rows of tiny buttons and boxes, and the most important features aren’t clearly highlighted. A "getting started" page explains the next steps, though, and they’re not difficult: choose your video folder, click Scan > Go and wait as the previews are prepared.
Our test setup quickly displayed eight video thumbnails. Each of these has a player bar and works independently, so we could click Play to preview video #1 within its thumbnail, then start #3, #5 and #6 playing at the same time, and freely move around in any of the clips. Alternatively, double-clicking any thumbnail displays it in a larger preview window.
A separate bar supports operations which apply to every thumbnailed video. You can move the playback position, for instance. Clicking at different points updates the thumbnail for every clip, maybe helping you find one with particular content. There’s a Play button to play all videos at once, and you can also tweak playback speed or volume.
You don’t have to live with the default "thumbnails + preview window + file folder" view. Pressing tab steps through other options, maybe playing two videos side-by-side or a single video full-screen (control options are then accessible with a right-click). Other buttons enable a video wall-type display (four videos playing at once) or multi-monitor support.
If you decide you don’t need one of the thumbnailed videos, it’s easily replaced: just select it, and choose something else in the folder tree.
HamMultiPlayer isn’t just about comparing multiple videos. You can also display different parts of the same video in a separate thumbnail, so #1 represents 0-5 minutes, #2 is 5-10, #3 is 10-15 and so on. That might make it easier to find key scenes, and you can also compare them, separately adjust brightness and contrast for individual sections, and use any of the other features we’ve described.
This is all hugely configurable. There’s no room here to describe all the possibilities, but right-clicking a thumbnail gets you started, with tweaks for brightness, contrast, saturation, gamma, hue, blur/ sharpness, de-noising, audio sounds, an equalizer, playback speeds and more.
A not-so-intuitive interface means the program isn’t as easy to use as it should be, but you’ll figure out the very basics in a few minutes, and everything else can be learned over time. Take a look: the depth of functionality here makes it well worth the effort.
HamMultiPlayer is available for Windows 7 and later.