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How are you listening to digital music?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Starfighter, Sep 5, 2022.

  1. Starfighter

    StarfighterExperienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Feb 16, 2011
    Male, 37 years old
    Malmö, Sweden Sweden
    We shouldn't support the streaming platforms and a lot of software is made by developers we shouldn't support, I know, but this said, what solution works for you? How do you listen to your digital music?

    I'm a mp3 kind of fella, I want my digital music offline, so I've gone through a couple of players over the years. I started out with Real Audio Player and Windows Media Player, then I moved to Winamp when that player arrived. After a few years I found foobar2000 which was my main player for about 15 years. During the last 10 years I've been using MusicBee which is great. Totally free, no bullshit, very configurable and powerful*.

    Here's my two window layouts for when I'm listening through MB:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    * = It officially supports MP3, AAC, M4A, MPC, OGG, FLAC, ALAC, APE, Opus, TAK, WavPack, WMA, WAV, MIDI, MOD, UMX & XM but I've been able to play even more formats.
     
    Spike one of many likes this.

  2. Spike one of many

    Spike one of manyExperienced Member Uploader Experienced member Forum Member


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    I've also gone through a lot of different players over the years. I was quite happy with Winamp over a decade ago. Now I'm using Windows Media Player for my music, and for watching videos I use a very old Media Player Classic (I like the simplicity of it and it has all the features and configuration options I need) and VLC Portable (for videos only, namely, those ones whose file extensions MPC won't recognize).
     
  3. VeganStill

    VeganStillMember Forum Member


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    Jul 19, 2022
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    I absolutely agree and would characterise myself the same way. Yet, it often creeps into my mind that streaming systems might be the perfect way to distribute music if they weren't tied to capital. There are certainly benefits to artists having data analytics available to them on how and to what extent their output is of interest to others, but the whole idea might be bollocks without capital anyway.

    I think it's worth asking myself why I feel the need to "own" music i.e. maintain mp3s, when I don't support the notion of ownership more broadly. Certainly I have no interest in safeguarding my "owned" music, and want to share it freely. I couldn't say that about my vinyl collection though, which I worry I'm too attached to. If there's anything in life I've replaced the notion of God with, and fanatically obsess over it's my music and book collections. But I'm getting off topic...

    I lament the loss of mixtapes as a 1:1 gift between two people as well, which still existed with digital music, but seems lost to me now in the streaming world. In high school, this was a way to say, "hey, you matter to me." I still cherish and safeguard the ones given to me from those days, especially from lovers. I suppose you probably can make playlists on Spotify and the like private, but it's also a social media site, so one would probably feel inclined to share a personal mix with as many as possible for the rush of adrenaline that comes from feeling validated on social media. I don't know. I just know I made a mixtape (zipped mp3s) for my niece's 13th birthday not long ago. I put a lot of time & thought into it and she was just kind of 'what the fuck is this? This isn't Spotify.' You're right dear, it is not Spotify. A playlist and a mixtape are not the same thing.

    I use Apple Music nowadays, which I've got working completely offline and disconnected from Apple's music & streaming services. I use Audacity to alter & fix digital music and MediaHuman's Converter to quickly convert or batch edit metadata. Combined those three work pretty well for me. Apple has a great library system IMO, which is what keeps me on it. I currently have 197 different genres of music since I'm a total nerd for music so organisation is probably my highest priority.
     
  4. Starfighter

    StarfighterExperienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Feb 16, 2011
    Male, 37 years old
    Malmö, Sweden Sweden
    Agreed! Streaming services would be great tools if they were owned by "us" instead of "them". This is something the left in general is behind on, we need infrastructure online that isn't dependent on corporations and higher-ups. Having a resistance on platforms that are controlled by the very forces we oppose is... Well I guess it's evident how that would be "not optimal". ;)


    Personally I'm fine with ownership of smaller things, personal effects isn't the same as owning the means of production as it were. The things that makes me want to have physical records are: 1) I like to interact with the music in physical ways like reading through a lyric sheet and 2) streaming services can lose the rights (god I'm so tired of RiGhTs in this context...) to albums and remove them. To me, there's something deeply unsatisfying in having a collection where things disappear willy-nilly outside of my control.


    The mix tape is still alive with me, if you lived in Sweden I'd send you one ASAP. :)
     
  5. Max Genius

    Max GeniusMember New Member


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    It's rare for me to listen to music on my phone so I can just put YouTube on my laptop with adblock and that works fine for me.

    I will pay for digital copies of albums on Bandcamp but obviously only independent artists and, even then, I'm more likely to opt for physical copies if they have any.
     
  6. Moxy

    MoxyNew Member New Member


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    I usually use spotify either on my computer or tv. I want to buy a music player just for music purposes but i dont know how to even use one, where to get one and what to get. Rn i only have a shitty samsung chromebook so i cant run any sort of programs on it.
     
  7. Spike one of many

    Spike one of manyExperienced Member Uploader Experienced member Forum Member


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    I just noticed you also listen to electronica. Any specific sub-genres?
     
  8. Starfighter

    StarfighterExperienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Feb 16, 2011
    Male, 37 years old
    Malmö, Sweden Sweden
    I'm mainly into chiptunes, synthwave and what is commonly described as "keygen music"! How about you?

    Edit: I also make my own chiptune music, last year I released "Your Free Trial Has Expired", it's available here: Your free trial has expired, by 8-Bit Unit
     
  9. Spike one of many

    Spike one of manyExperienced Member Uploader Experienced member Forum Member


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    That sounds like old video games music (well obviously, it's 8-bit music :p). I didn't know people still make that, it's cool though :)
    Yeah, I like a bit of old school goa-trance (before it morphed into psytrance, which has become too formulaic and over-mastered/ -equallised for my taste, which makes it very same-y & predictable with a few exceptions). I also made a few of my own tunes which only a couple of my friends got to hear. Unfortunately I lost all my tunes after my computer got infected by a virus. I even made a punk tune on my pc, complete with short, fucked-up guitar solos and lagging drums.
    Sometimes I'll also listen to psychedelic ambient music which is especially nice when you're stoned, and various other bits of electronic music here and there - drum & bass for example - whatever sounds good (but not euro-trance).
     
  10. Starfighter

    StarfighterExperienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Male, 37 years old
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    It's made in a tracker that emulates the Nintendo Entertainment System audio processing unit so you're right, it absolutely sounds like old video game music! Actually, if you put those tracks on a game cartridge then the old Nintendo console would be able to play it. Pretty cool! The chiptune scene is pretty huge!

    I also listen to goa-trance sometimes! And psytrance and even euro-trance, and many others. I listen to pretty much everything if the mood is right. :) Well, 9 times out of 10 it's hardcore d-beat punk, that's like my default genre, but then I find myself going down a rabbit hole of obscure music and end up listening to "house folk trance ska metal but on violin and the drums are scissors" for a day... :D

    I guess there's a lot of anarchist artists in the electronica world as well? I remember Atari Teenage Riot for example, that was called electro hardcore or something, right? Hmm..

    Edit: It was called "digital hardcore", according to wikipedia!
     
  11. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    I'm old school, I still use the same old Winamp version with the same shitty skin that I've been using for like 25 years hahaha. It doesn't have fancy features but if it ain't broke, don't fix it!
    upload_2022-9-28_1-36-30.png

    MusicBee looks much better though, I'll probably give it a try when I have the time. So thanks for the suggestion!
     
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  12. Starfighter

    StarfighterExperienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Male, 37 years old
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    The classic Winamp skin is timeless! I still love it. :)

    One of MBs biggest strengths is how customizable it is which also makes it a bit fiddly to get just how one likes it. Not as fiddly as foobar2000 though! :D If you do try it out and struggle to get it right then don't hesitate to ask me for help. I mean sure, there's a whole forum for the software so I guess you could find all the answers that way but sometimes it's easier to understand something if explained/showed directly by a peer.

    Oh, and here's a forum thread full of inspiration to layouts: Config/theme show off thread.
     
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  13. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    I love the themes with the album covers! This is really what's missing from Winamp and other old software like that.

    A few years ago I coded a modified version of XBMC to use as a home theater PC to listen to music and it was really nice to have the album covers. But XBMC was designed for movies so it was not ideal, and I gave up after an update broke all of my custom coding.

    How does MB gets the album covers? Is the process pretty much automatized based on the band and album name from the ID3 tags, or you have to manually do it?
     
  14. Starfighter

    StarfighterExperienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    If you're using plugins with Winamp then it might interest you to know MusicBee is compatible with a lot of Winamp-plugins as well!

    I can relate. :D Well, I mostly used XBMC for movies (I have my PC directly hooked up to my stereo for music) but even then a lot went away with updates so I switched to Serviio for the movies.

    There are automatic solutions in place, but I have no personal experience with that as all my music on the PC already have local artwork. You can choose to have MusicBee either 1) gather artwork online automatically, 2) gather artwork online when you tell it to from case to case and 3) do it manually. The three main databases MB uses are fanart, itunes and deezer, and then there's support for bing as well (which I've disabled as I don't want search engines to get information from me). It's possible to add further sources manually, for example I added discogs to get artist information and photos from. And then of course you can add whatever artwork you want manually depending on your preferences.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2022
  15. Spike one of many

    Spike one of manyExperienced Member Uploader Experienced member Forum Member


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    One would think so but other than digital hardcore the electronic music scene doesn't seem to be very political. There's Trancendental Anarchists but other than that I don't know.
     

14 members have read this thread this month

  1. Starfighter
  2. Spike one of many
  3. VeganStill
  4. Charger Bullet
  5. Nightbreed
  6. Max Genius
  7. strivets
  8. Moxy
  9. JoeHawkins72
  10. rejects
  11. ungovernable
  12. N1NJA
  13. scab
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