Home » Simple Way to Get MKV Played on Xbox One S from USB or Media Server

Simple Way to Get MKV Played on Xbox One S from USB or Media Server

Xbox One S MKV Playback Issue

"Hi, everyone, my new Xbox one S both seem to be transcoding all my MKV's causing them to constantly buffer and becoming unwatchable. i got a synology ds416play about a month ago and was running the new plex dvr update 2 server from it and also running the same on my MacBook.
all the files play on my iPhones, iPads and MacBook but NOTHING will play on my xbox. I've tried analysing, optimising but nothing works."

"Is the Xbox One S able to play 20-40GB .mkv Remuxes with Lossless HD audio? I've tried it on Xbox 360 and PS3 and both require my Mac Mini to transcode and it's very strenuous."

Play MKV on Xbox One S

MKV Support on Xbox One S

Apart from the additional support for 4K Blu-ray and 4K streaming video, the Xbox One S also allows you to play video you have downloaded or ripped by plugging in a USB drive with its built-in Media Player app. The Xbox One S has included playback support for MKV, however, only MKV files that contain video and audio tracks encoded with the following codecs are expected to play on Xbox One S:

MKV container codec support on Xbox One S

Matroska Id

MSFT Media Foundation MF_MT_SUBTYPE


FourCC or WAV identifiers



H.264 video




MPEG-2 video




MPEG-1 video




Microsoft MPEG 4 codec version 3




MPEG-4 part 2 video




Maps to several codecs usually supported in the AVI format that are available on the console.




Advanced Audio Coding (AAC)




Dolby Digital (AC-3)




MPEG Audio Layer-3 (MP3)




MPEG-1 audio payload




Uncompressed PCM audio




Uncompressed PCM audio




Uncompressed IEEE floating-point audio


MKV container other features support on Xbox One S

- If one or more video tracks are present, the first track will be played.
- If one or more audio tracks are present, the first track will be played.
- If one or more captions tracks are present, the captions will not render, but the file will load and play.
- If one or more fonts or images are present, captions and images will not render, although the file will load and play.
- Menu information is not supported and will not be displayed, but the file will load and play.
- Chapter information is not supported, but the file will load and play.
- If files with chapters refer to supplemental files, the supplemental files will not play.
- Thumbnail images are available when browsing for files on USB drives using the file browser.

Play Unsupported MKV files on Xbox One S

If the MKV files in your hand are encoded with Xbox One S not readable video codec like H.265, VC-1/WMV, etc or audio codec like WMA, DTS, FLAC, ALAC, DTS-HD, you will then to perform a codec transcoding process. Here, a simple to use and workable program called Pavtube Video Converter (best video converter review) is highly recommended to you. With the program, you can easily encode all the MKV files downloaded from online video sharing sites or ripped from Blu-ray or DVD disc to Xbox One S playable MKV files with compatible video and audio codec.

Tips: If you plan to play the MKV files on Xbox One S from USB drive, make sure that you are using Xbox One S supported USB 1, USB 2 and USB drive. In addition, the USB drive must be formatted in FAT16, FAT32 or NTFS format. If you have a Windows PC, your USB drive will work on your Xbox One as long as your Windows PC can read it. If you have a Mac, be sure to format the drive as exFAT and not with a Mac-only file system like HFS+. Alternative, you can also stream the converted files to Xbox One S via a DLNA server like Windows Media Player on Windows 10 or Plex on Mac.

Besides MKV, you can also use the program to convert other unsupported file formats such as AVI, WMV, MP4, MOV, FLV, H.265, etc into Xbox One S playable file formats.

For Mac users, please turn to download Pavtube Video Converter for Mac to get MKV files played on Xbox One S.


How to Convert MKV to Xbox One S Playable Video and Audio Codec?

Step 1: Load MKV files into the program.

After the successful installation, click "File" > "Add Video/Audio" or "Add from Folder" to load unsupported MKV files into the program.

Input MKV files into the program

Step 2: Set output file format.

Click "Format" bar, from its drop-down options, select one of Xbox One S supported file formats such as "H.264 HD Video(*mp4)" frop "HD Video" main category.

Output Xbox One S playable video codec

Step 3: Adjust Xbox One S playable audio codec.

Click "Settings"on the main interface to open the "Profile Settings"window, in audio panel, from "Codec"drop-down list, choose one of Xbox One S readable audio codec such as "AAC". You can also adust other output profile parameters such as video codec, resolution, bit rate, sample rate, bit rate, sample rate and channels, etc to make them adapt with Xbox One S.

adjust output audio codec

Step 4: Begin the conversion process.

Press the "Convert" button in the right-bottom to begin the conversion from MKV file to Xbox One S media player app readable video and audio codec conversion process.

After the conversion is completed, you can either play video on Xbox One S from USB drive or stream video to Xbox One S via Windows Media Player on Windows and Plex on Mac platform.

My Profile