We review the media player aimed at both novice and power users.

IMHO, one of the greatest technological advances for the casual computer user has been the ability to locate new software online, download it, customize it, and then move on to the next great new title if this one isn’t getting the job done. It’s almost laughable to think about the days when consumers bought a $900 desktop computer from a big box store (that was considered a bargain back in the day), took it home, unboxed it according to the hefty printed manual, and then were overjoyed at the functionality of all the software that they had to load themselves from the included CD-ROM.

We review Zoom Player Max, the media player aimed at both novice and power users

Zoom Player Max should appeal to tech users with a range of abilities and comfort levels.

Why use a media player?

At the risk of screaming, “Get off my lawn!” at all the whippersnappers reading this review, that is seriously what it was like. Once upon a time, users were amazed by the full color graphics and the ability to save a document on their hard drives. Media players? What the heck was that?

Obviously, those bygone days aren’t the way of things now. Today’s user is just as likely to spend 10 minutes deleting all the pre-installed crap that came with the computer thanks to proprietary licensing and partnerships, then go grab a bunch of open-source software off the internet.

This kind of choice has emerged in nearly every type of digital tool. For some tools, it wouldn’t seem like there needs to be too many options, such as media players, for example. Seriously, how many different ways are there to power up a song, a video, or a podcast?

Stuck with pre-installed player

A lot of everyday computer users are stuck in pre-installed player land because they don’t have the know-how to adjust their player. At the same time, the highly skilled users are left searching for something they can customize to their liking; the player space has typically been skewed to either end of the know-how spectrum, with nothing in the middle. Zoom Player Max is just one title in a sea of choices when it comes to playing your content, but this one speaks to a broad audience of tech users with a range of abilities and comfort levels.

“Zoom Player Max tries to both simplify the playback experience for the common user, while giving ‘power users’ all the tools and interfaces they may require to manipulate their playback environment to their exact specifications. To that end, Zoom Player Max employs a slick and simple user interface, combined with easy to access features while at the same time providing advanced control dialogs over every feature imaginable.”

Kind on your CPU

The best thing about Zoom Player Max is its low consumption of your tech – in some instances as little as 6% of the CPU while playing a video. That’s great for users who love to catch up on their favorite binge watch while also getting some work done in other tabs. There’s also a power manager feature so that you won’t drain your battery while rewatching the entire first season of Stranger Things ahead of season two’s release this fall.

Good to know

There are the typical downsides to any software. The interface and functions are not exactly intuitive, meaning there’s very little hand holding on your screen. However, there are tons of files and FAQs for anyone who isn’t immediately at home with it. Once you’re familiar with the five key system (up/down/left/right/select) you’ll be able to navigate the media library, your playlists, audio equalizer, the chapter menu, your play history, and more.

To try Zoom Player Max for yourself, click here to download.