DirectShow Filters

[The feature associated with this page, DirectShow, is a legacy feature. It has been superseded by MediaPlayer, IMFMediaEngine, and Audio/Video Capture in Media Foundation. Those features have been optimized for Windows 10 and Windows 11. Microsoft strongly recommends that new code use MediaPlayer, IMFMediaEngine and Audio/Video Capture in Media Foundation instead of DirectShow, when possible. Microsoft suggests that existing code that uses the legacy APIs be rewritten to use the new APIs if possible.]

DirectShow provides a set of default filters in Windows. These filters support many data formats while providing a high degree of hardware independence. An application can also register and install custom filters on the target system.

The ACM Wrapper, AVI Decompressor and AVI Compressor filters work with the Audio and Video Compression Managers to enable various codecs to be used in a DirectShow filter graph.

All the filters supported by the DirectShow Software Development Kit (SDK) are listed here. If a filter appears in GraphEdit but is not documented in this reference section, it means the filter has either been installed by a third party or is used internally by some other Microsoft technology. Such filters are not supported by the DirectShow SDK.

Filter Description
ACM Wrapper Enables Audio Compression Manager (ACM) codecs to join a filter graph.
Analog Video Crossbar Represents a video crossbar on a video capture device that supports the Windows Driver Model (WDM).
Audio Capture Represents an audio capture device.
Audio Renderer (WaveOut) Uses the waveOut* APIs to render waveform audio.
AVI Compressor Enables Video Compression Manager (VCM) compressors to join a filter graph.
AVI Decompressor Enables Video Compression Manager (VCM) decompressors to join a filter graph.
AVI Draw Pulled automatically into a playback graph instead of the AVI Decompressor when video is being output to an external NTSC television monitor.
AVI Mux Accepts multiple input streams and interleaves them into AVI format.
AVI Splitter Splits audio and video streams in playback of AVI files.
AVI/WAV File Source Reads AVI and WAV source files and generates the appropriate output pins for the file type. (Deprecated.)
CC Decoder Accepts sample waveforms delivered by a capture filter and delivers decoded closed-captioning data.
Color Space Converter Converts from one RGB color type to another RGB type.
DirectSound Renderer Renders audio using the DirectSound API.
DMO Wrapper Enables a DirectShow application to use a DirectX Media Object (DMO) within a filter graph.
DV Muxer Combines a digital video (DV)–encoded video stream with one or two audio streams to produce an interleaved DV stream.
DV Splitter Splits an interleaved DV stream into its component video and audio streams.
DV Video Decoder Decodes a DV stream into uncompressed video.
DV Video Encoder Encodes an uncompressed video stream into DV video.
DVD Navigator Opens all necessary files in a DVD-Video volume, navigates through the linear DVD-Video .vob files, and parses the resulting MPEG-2 program stream.
Enhanced Video Renderer Video renderer with the same core functionality and plug-in model as the Media Foundation EVR media sink.
File Source (Async) Opens and reads local files of many different data formats and passes the data to a parser filter.
File Source (URL) Works with any source file that can be identified by a Uniform Resource Locator (URL) and whose media major type is stream.
File Stream Renderer Renders file names that are parsed by the Multi-File Parser filter.
File Writer Used to write files to disc regardless of format.
Full Screen Renderer Uses DirectDraw to render full-screen video on older graphics cards. (Obsolete.)
Infinite Pin Tee Delivers samples delivered to its input pin to a variable number of output pins.
Internal Script Command Renderer Receives script commands and dispatches them to the application.
Line 21 Decoder Converts line-21 closed caption information to bitmaps with caption text.
Microsoft AC3 Encoder Encodes stereo PCM audio to a Dolby Digital bitstream. (Not supported for third-party applications.)
Microsoft MPEG-1/DD Audio Decoder Decodes MPEG-1, AAC, and Dolby Digital audio.
Microsoft MPEG-2 Audio Encoder Encodes MPEG-2 audio.
Microsoft MPEG-2 Encoder Encodes MPEG-2 audio and video.
Microsoft MPEG-2 Video Decoder Decodes MPEG-2 video.
Microsoft MPEG-2 Video Encoder Encodes MPEG-2 video.
MIDI Parser Reads MIDI data that is found in .MID and .RMI files.
MIDI Renderer Renders MIDI data from the MIDI Parser filter.
MJPEG Compressor Compresses an uncompressed video stream, using motion JPEG compression.
MJPEG Decompressor Decodes a video stream from motion JPEG to uncompressed video.
MPEG-1 Audio Decoder Decodes MPEG-1 Layer I and Layer II audio to PCM.
MPEG-1 Stream Splitter Splits an MPEG-1 system stream into its component audio and video streams.
MPEG-1 Video Decoder Decodes MPEG-1 video.
MPEG-2 Demultiplexer Demultiplexes MPEG-2 transport streams that are delivered in push mode, and program streams that are delivered in push or pull mode.
MPEG-2 Splitter Parses MPEG-2 program streams, creates an output pin for each stream, and outputs the compressed audio and/or video MPEG packets to an MPEG-2 decoder filter.
MSDV Driver The Windows Driver Model (WDM) driver for DV camcorders.
MSTape Driver Supports D-VHS and MPEG camcorder devices.
MSYUV Color Space Converter Codec Enables playback of video source data in YUV formats on clients whose video display adapter cannot be used for YUV-to-RGB conversions in hardware.
Multi-File Parser Parses a simple file format that enables multiple file names to be specified as though they were one file.
Overlay Mixer 2 Like the Overlay Mixer, but can be added to a filter graph automatically. (Obsolete.)
Overlay Mixer Designed specifically for DVD playback and broadcast video streams with line-21 closed captioning. (Obsolete. Superseded by Video Mixing Renderer.)
QT Decompressor Decompresses Apple QuickTime 2.0 video. (Obsolete.)
QuickTime Movie Parser Splits Apple QuickTime data into audio and video streams. (Obsolete.)
SAMI (CC) Parser Parses captioning data from Synchronized Accessible Media Interchange (SAMI) files.
Smart Tee Used in video capture graphs to split the video stream into a preview stream and a capture stream.
Tee/Sink-to-Sink Converter Provides an efficient means to duplicate streams of data within kernel mode without the expensive transitions between kernel and user mode.
TV Audio Provides control of television audio decoding, stereo or monoaural selection, and secondary audio program (SAP) selection.
TV Tuner Selects an analog broadcast or cable channel to be viewed.
VBI Surface Allocator Controls the allocation of VBI buffers in analog television graphs with hardware video port capture scenarios.
VFW Capture Filter Works with older video capture hardware that uses Video For Windows.
VGA 16 Color Ditherer Converts from an RGB color type to a 4-bit color display so that AVI and MPEG video streams may be displayed on older 16-color monitors. (Obsolete.)
Video Mixing Renderer Filter 7 (VMR-7) The default video renderer in Windows XP. Offers advanced rendering and video mixing capabilities.
Video Mixing Renderer Filter 9 (VMR-9) Similar to VMR-7 but available on all platforms supported by DirectX.
Video Port Manager Enables the Video Mixing Renderer to work seamlessly on systems where video data is transferred directly from a video capture device or hardware decoder to the graphics chip.
Video Renderer Default video renderer on Windows 98SE, Windows 2000, and Windows Millennium Edition. Connects to any video transform filter that produces decompressed video data.
WAVE Parser Parses WAV-format audio data from .wav, .au, or .aif files.
WDM Video Capture Controls analog capture devices that use Windows Driver Model (WDM) drivers.
Windows Media Source Filter Default source filter for playback of Windows Media and MPEG-4 content created using the Microsoft MPEG-4 Encoder. This is the source filter used by Windows Media Player 6.4. (Obsolete.)
WM ASF Reader Source filter for file playback of Windows Media-based content and content created with any of the Microsoft MPEG-4 Encoder DMOs. Must be explicitly added to a filter graph. This filter is based on the Windows Media Format SDK.
WM ASF Writer Accepts uncompressed input streams and creates ASF files containing either Windows Media streams or MPEG-4 streams using the Microsoft MPEG-4 Encoder DMO. This filter is based on the Windows Media Format SDK.
WST Codec Decodes and/or duplicates the decoded and forward-error-corrected Teletext data for the WST Decoder filter. (Obsolete.)
WST Decoder Accepts decoded World Standard Teletext data from the WST Codec and delivers the bitmaps to Pin 2 on the Overlay Mixer using fonts supplied by Microsoft. (Obsolete.)


DirectShow Reference