:fa_apple: Macadelic audio players



  • TIL that only thing more depressing than Windows' audio player scene is the Mac OS's audio player scene.

    Here's what I want in an audio player:

    • Work directly with my files on HDD, without forcing me to import everything into some proprietary database or "media manager"
    • Multiple playlists, with easy management (sorting, filtering, drag&drop...)
    • Download and display album art and lyrics
    • Focuses on playing audio. I don't need video player / image viewer / coffee maker options cluttering the interface

    Good to haves:

    • Automatically manipulate and "fix" ID3 tags (eg. by using discogs API) ON DEMAND (no iTunes kind of crap)
    • Doesn't look like a spreadsheet

    On Windows, I was a long time fan of Winamp. Once they went bust (and after pissing me off a bit too), I switched over to Foobar2000, with which I'm relatively satisfied. As you can see, both my Windows audio player choices fulfil these requirements.

    On Mac OS, though, there seems to be NOTHING approaching the quality of these two. Here's the players I looked at, keeping in mind that some of these are vague memories from my previous OS X excursions.

    This is the player I settled on the last time around. It's... ok. I can live with it. But it's dead in terms of development, godawful ugly, feature poor, slow and just a crappy experience compared to Foobar.

    It looks nice. Good to play a file or two. But no playlists and seriously lacking other features.

    I always disliked this thing, and the fact it's primarily a video player doesn't help endear it further.

    Some people are seriously suggesting this thing. Really? This relic hasn't been updated since 2008.

    Before I waste too much time trying out one abandoned iTunes clone after another, let me ask you guys if you have some recommendation. Is there some gem I'm missing? Or am I doomed to using fucking Clementine yet again?



  • Trying out another one of these iTunes clones.

    How generous of them. I guess they don't want those hit & run customers, who only want to listen to one song and then never need an audio player again.



  • Not the best start...



  • Not that it helps you, but I used to really love Zune on Windows, which met all your criteria (especially "doesn't look like a spreadsheet"-- it had an awesome design which didn't skimp on playlist features.)

    Unfortunately it died when the service turned into Xbox Music, and ... whatever they call it now. Shame.



  • @cartman82 said:

    Here's what I want in an audio player:

    iTunes?

    /runs and ducks for cover, knowing very well what a horrible 340MB piece of trash iTunes is.


  • area_deu

    @cartman82 said:

    But it's dead in terms of development

    Is it? It looks like their github still has activity ...



  • @aliceif said:

    Is it? It looks like their github still has activity ...


  • area_deu

    They're working on a version 1.3, though.

    And I recall having gotten a Version 1.2.3 last year.



  • @aliceif said:

    They're working on a version 1.3, though.

    And I recall having gotten a Version 1.2.3 last year.

    You're right, seems their github is way more active than their home page would indicate.

    BTW.

    1500 unresolved issues! WTF!?



  • No Sonara. Don't copy my music. Don't organise my music. Don't try to be friends with my music. Don't invite my music to a party and try to get it drunk. Don't put toothpaste into my music's ear while it's asleep.

    ###JUST FUCKING PLAY MY MUSIC!

    ##IS THAT SO FUCKING DIFFICULT!?



  • Oh God, this one looks like a 70-ies radio player.

    Mac developers, have you no shame?



  • Hey web designers, here's a hint.

    If you're trying to sell me a media player, don't show me stupid stock photos flying in as I scroll down the page.

    SHOW ME THE FUCKING MEDIA PLAYER!



  • The only actual screenshot of the media player is this... thing.

    Except, when you look a little bit closer...

    ... you discover this is some kind of composite, javascript manipulated frankenstein, where each section of the player is a separate image layered on top of the others.

    So is this a part of some cool presentation? Do we see each section of the player zoom out, with little bullet points appearing next to it? Or maybe there's a highlight as you mouse over?

    Nope. Not even links to different sections of the endless marketing copy. Nothing at all.

    What the hell were these people smoking?



  • Why don't you just give up on music and learn to love interpretive dance.



  • What's this laziness?! Just grab your favorite programming language and widget toolkit and make your own.

    Like that guy that wasn't allowed to run any unauthorized apps in his work computer so he just used Excel

    @cartman82 said:

    No Sonara. Don't copy my music. Don't organise my music. Don't try to be friends with my music. Don't invite my music to a party and try to get it drunk. Don't put toothpaste into my music's ear while it's asleep.

    JUST FUCKING PLAY MY MUSIC!

    IS THAT SO FUCKING DIFFICULT!?

    That's not the Apple Way™. You're on OS X, you get the OS X experience, which is that your data belongs to the program you use to manage it and no one else.



  • @anonymous234 said:

    What's this laziness?! Just grab your favorite programming language and widget toolkit and make your own.

    You know what? I might just do that.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Sigh.

    number_of_crappy_music_players++;
    

  • :belt_onion:

    You are :doing_it_wrong:. Mac users should have money to burn, even free apps must charge OSX and iOS users. You must throw away all your music and buy them again on iTunes. If you insist on :doing_it_wrong: you can use Celementine, it works.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @cartman82 said:

    Oh God, this one looks like a 70-ies radio player.

    Hey now, that's some bitchin' woodgrain.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @blakeyrat said:

    learn to love interpretive dance.


  • area_pol

    Banshee
    I use it on Linux but I see they also have a Mac version.
    It should satisfy all your requirements, works well for me.



  • Banshee has it's own quirks, like sorting on the tags instead of just using the filenames. Of course, I have the tags in all my MP3s fixed because standalone MP3 players do the same thing, but god forbid I try to play files off of someone's thumb drive in filesystem order.



  • Is XMMS in macports / brew?



  • Just open all your audio files in Chrome.



  • @Adynathos said:

    BansheeI use it on Linux but I see they also have a Mac version.It should satisfy all your requirements, works well for me.

    Not very encouraging.

    But I'll give it a go.



  • @lucas said:

    Is XMMS in macports / brew?

    Another abandoned project. And boy, does it look open source-y, even for linux. Terrible site, talking about their daemon and server-client architecture, but not a single screenshot (!?).

    Seems they have a Mac install through macports. But since I already swore my eternal allegiance to homebrew (and never the twain shall meet), I guess it was not meant to be.



  • Well Banshee is a bust, doesn't work on El Capitan.

    Nobody appreciates Windows' insistence on backwards compatibility until they need it.



  • Final judgment on Decibel: Meh.

    They have a simple uninspired playlist, you can queue your music there and play. No advanced options that I can see, looks like a student's hobby project. One slight plus is replay gain, but even that is bush league compared to Foobar.

    Also they are asking $30+ dollars for this. I mean, I'd probably pirate it anyway, but jeesh, show some decency!

    Clementine beats this easily.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    I continue to be a hardcore xmPlay user on Windows, but after going through the above process for OS X a couple of years ago, I realised that everyone basically uses iTunes anyway and largely fell in that crowd since xmPlay with CrossOver isn't entirely stables or wasn't then.

    Though if you have a Windows app you like, you could CrossOver that ;)



  • XMMS != XMMS 2.

    The original XMMS was just a straight up winamp clone (2.x skins worked okay with it).



  • @cartman82 said:

    Work directly with my files on HDD, without forcing me to import everything into some proprietary database or "media manager"

    Why is this such a major requirement that you even put it first? Or to put it another way: why do you care about the files at all — the important things, I’d think, are that it plays your music and lets you organise the music way you want to, right?


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    Because this is the shit iTunes pulls if you let it: it rearranges all your files into how it wants it, by default.

    And since this is a multi boot environment I believe, it is important that players leave the fuck alone.



  • In a multiboot environment where you want to work with the same files, sure, I can see why you’d have this as a requirement. But in general? I’m much happier to let the app take care of where the files are so I don’t have to. In case I need it anyway, I can just drag the song out of iTunes and end up with a copy of the file.

    In any case, iTunes copies your files to its library directory, it doesn’t rearrange the originals. True, this means you end up with two of each file, but you can set iTunes to not do this at all (by going to iTunes → Preferences → Advanced) and just use the files in their original locations.



  • @Gurth said:

    Why is this such a major requirement that you even put it first? Or to put it another way: why do you care about the files at all — the important things, I’d think, are that it plays your music and lets you organise the music way you want to, right?

    I have yet to find a media library that correctly organises compilations, best off-s, rereleases, alternative versions, singles, live recordings, mixes, DJ sets, loose files and a hundred different things you might find in my collection. Most of them just read ID3 tags (that are often incomplete or inaccurate), and naively organises everything by the album, which I find infuriating.

    Furthermore, as you might have noticed, I'm often moving between different desktops and mobile devices. Once I organise something, I want to have it that way wherever I go next. I don't want to waste 100 hours massaging some crappy XML database, and then once I switch back to Windows or want to upload a few albums to my Android phone, have all that work wasted.

    FURTHERMORE, I want all my metadata to travel with my files. When I backup and restore, I want everything to be the way it was before. I don't want to think about some proprietary database I need to remember to drag along and that I can't hack at.

    TLDR; files are the best way to organise your music when you have lots of it and don't want to be chained to a single OS/application.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    That's recent behaviour then, because it always fucking used to move rather than copy...



  • @cartman82 said:

    as you might have noticed, I'm often moving between different desktops and mobile devices.

    I hadn’t. That does put you in much the same boat as multiboot, so yeah, I can see why you don’t want the player to do its own thing with the files.

    The main reason I asked is because quite a lot of people who have this as a requirement, do so for no good reason other than the feeling of being in control — and so making things more difficult for themselves than if they’d just let the app do its thing.

    @Arantor said:

    That's recent behaviour then

    I don’t recall it ever being any different, but I also don’t feel like booting up my Mac with OS X 10.4 and a version of iTunes to match on it to check :)



  • @Gurth said:

    The main reason I asked is because quite a lot of people who have this as a requirement, do so for no good reason other than the feeling of being in control — and so making things more difficult for themselves than if they’d just let the app do its thing.

    If a media app could organise and display everything correctly, I'd be seriously tempted to give up this janitorial crap. I have yet to find some that could to my satisfaction, though.



  • Is Kodi (nee XBMC) any good for music? I know it happily leaves files alone for videos.



  • Kodi's UI is designed to work full-screen on a TV. It's the shell for OSMC (which I run on a Raspberry Pi in my lounge room) and it works very well there, but it's irritating to drive as a windowed application.

    Personally I just use VLC to play all my playable stuff, and hand-build my playlists as M3U files. VLC won't win any beauty contests but it's flexibly configurable, there's very little it won't play, and it works pretty much the same regardless of which OS is underneath it on any given day.

    I have similar must-work-anywhere requirements to @cartman82's and agree with all his reasons for distrusting "media organizers" as a thing; would certainly never even begin to think of locking myself into any particular player's own playlist or index format.


  • sockdevs

    FWIW back when i was running linux as my desktop OS i used MPD as my music player.

    It's a system daemon so it survives playing even when i drop out of X, lets me arrange my music library however i want and preserves the folder structure as semantic data about the music.

    it supports a wide variety of clients (some of which (especially the java ones) are bound to work on mac)

    so for your need to haves it:

    • works directly with the files on disc. point it at a directory and drop your music in there, and away you go!
    • Multiple Playlists, supported in base functionality, ease of use depends on the client that you use with it.
    • download album art/lyrics, not part of the base functionality but there are plugins for that and some clients build it in.
    • focus on playing audio. yep. that's all it do.

    and your good to haves:

    • ID3 tav manipulation, sorry, no. that's missing.
    • Doesn't look like a spreadsheet, some clients do, particularly the CLI ones, but the GUI ones are mostly good

    the client i used most was Lyra not exactly the prettiest in the world, but totally functional and not too many frills.



  • You dropped this: ')'


  • sockdevs

    ara ara?

    my parens are unballanced?


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Doesn't look like it. I suppose you'll just have to keep it spare for some other time. :smile:


  • area_pol

    @cartman82 said:

    On Windows, I was a long time fan of Winamp. Once they went bust (and after pissing me off a bit too)

    While the main site of winamp is down, the program itself can be downloaded for example here (admittedly this site looks quite shady, you will have to scan for malware yourself). It even has a Mac version.



  • @cartman82 said:

    I have yet to find a media library that correctly organises compilations, best off-s, rereleases, alternative versions, singles, live recordings, mixes, DJ sets, loose files and a hundred different things you might find in my collection. Most of them just read ID3 tags (that are often incomplete or inaccurate), and naively organises everything by the album, which I find infuriating.

    AMEN

    I have everything named correctly then a tool like iTunes et al just shit over your whole fucking collection and you end up worse than when you started.

    Winamp and similar programs at least respect what was there before and not fuck around with it unless you tell it to and why I am still using winamp today.



  • Do not check these boxes. Simples.



  • I am suppose to know that shit in advance? ... it isn't obvious ... I haven't been using Macs for years so how the fuck am I supposed to know there is some fucking advanced feature.

    Apart from that it is an irrelevance, because I hate using iTunes. The whole thing is a piece of shit.



  • @Gurth said:

    In any case, iTunes copies your files to its library directory, it doesn’t rearrange the originals.

    Since when?

    Don't try to bullshit us on iTunes, buddy, we've all used that piece of shit at one time or another.


    After hearing Cartman is a dickhole who pirates all his software, I honestly hope he never finds a product that meets his needs, also that a rabid dog bites his ass. Don't be a dickhole, folks, karma will get you.



  • Not my fault you can't be arsed to investigate how to customise the software. And "I haven't used macs for years" is no excuse either, because those options have existed since the first versions of iTunes.

    I've found that iTunes is marginally less shite than all the other OSX options.

    I used to use mpd back in the day too. Nice, lightweight, choice of crappy UIs.



  • @tufty said:

    Not my fault you can't be arsed to investigate how to customise the software. And "I haven't used macs for years" is no excuse either, because those options have existed since the first versions of iTunes.

    No how about fuck you because you don't understand that this is "consumer software" and should maybe fucking prompt you to how it is going to do anything.

    This "you should already know by now" reasoning is best left to pop artists and not software engineers.

    If You Don't Know Me By Now - Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes – 03:24
    — SWING1435

    BTW You are a massive bellend.


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