How to Play an MKV File on My PS3 Using an External Hard Drive

Written by leighton sawatzky
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How to Play an MKV File on My PS3 Using an External Hard Drive
The PS3 plays a number of video file formats, but MKV is not one of them. (movie image by saied shahinkiya from

Besides playing video games, Blu-ray discs and connecting to the Internet, the PlayStation 3 can play movie files stored on storage devices like external hard drives and USB sticks. It supports a number of video file formats, but MKV support has not yet been added to the system. In order to play back MKV files on your PS3, you need to convert them to a format that the PS3 recognises.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Windows Computer
  • PlayStation 3
  • External USB hard drive
  • Internet connection
  • MKV format video

Show MoreHide


  1. 1

    Connect your external hard drive to your computer.

  2. 2

    Download "SmartLabs tsMuxeR" from its website.

  3. 3

    Open the downloaded file and drag the "tsMuxer" and tsMuxerGUI" applications to your desktop or another folder where you will keep them. Both applications must be kept in the same folder in order to function.

  4. 4

    Double-click "tsMuxerGUI" to open the program.

  5. 5

    Click the "Input" tab at the top of the program window.

  6. 6

    Click the "Add" button to the right of the empty box under the row of tabs. This brings up a browsing window.

  7. 7

    Browse to the MKV file on your computer's hard drive that you want to play on your PS3. Click "Open."

  8. 8

    Under the "General Track Options" box, click the checkbox next to the "Change level" drop-down menu. Type "4.1" into the drop-down menu.

  9. 9

    In the "Output" section below "General Track Options," click the "M2TS muxing" option. It is the second option from the left.

  10. 10

    Select a location to output the file. You can either type a file path into the text field in the "Output" section or click the "Browse" button to its right to browse to the location. It is simplest to choose a location on your external hard drive.

  11. 11

    Click the "Start Muxing" button. The program will create a new file at the location that you selected. This process will take several minutes.

  12. 12

    Disconnect the external hard drive from your computer and plug it into a USB port on your PS3.

    How to Play an MKV File on My PS3 Using an External Hard Drive
    A USB connector. (usb cable image by Leonid Nyshko from
  13. 13

    Go to the "Video" tab of the PS3 main menu. The external hard drive is listed as "USB Device," with the manufacturer and model name of the hard drive included in parentheses.

  14. 14

    Highlight the external hard drive and press the "Triangle" button. Select "Display All" from the menu that pops up on the right side of the screen.

  15. 15

    Navigate to the MKV file that you converted on the external hard drive. Files and folders are listed alphabetically on the PS3 menu.

  16. 16

    Highlight the video file and press "X" to begin playback.

Tips and warnings

  • If you don't have an external hard drive, you can play video files on your PS3 from USB drives and SD cards, as well.
  • Disconnecting a USB drive while watching video files stored on it can damage the data.

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