Amarok, Rhythmbox and Banshee are a few of the popular music players in Linux. They are great in features and have received plenty of good reviews. But what is unknown to many is that there are a lot of other music players for Linux which are also great in features, but are hidden in some corners of the world.
If you are willing to try something out of the box, here are 5 great alternative music players that you can use in your Linux desktop.
If you love Winamp for its small, simple and skinnable interface, then you will love Audacious for sure. Audacious is a fork of Beep Media Player and XMMS. It is small, lightweight and fully skinnable. It supports both Winamp and XMMS skin. This means that you can now port your favorite Winamp skin over and make Audacious looks exactly the same.
Behind the simple interface, there are options for you to configure your playlist, visualization, sound effects, mouse shortcut and also to install the various plugins to improve its functionality. If you are a loyal fan of Winamp, or just want something that does not take up the whole of your desktop space, then Audacious is definitely the best choice.
At first glance, ‘Listen Music Player’ looks just like Rhythmbox, but after a using it for a while you will find it is actually better than Rhythmbox. The interface is split into three views. The panel on the extreme left is the play control and playlist. At the bottom of the left pane is the ‘dynamic’ option where you can make your player ‘smarter’ by configuring it to remove played tracks and append new tracks to the playlist. The middle panel is the navigation menu while the right panel displays the necessary information.
Listen Music Player integrates well with last.fm, ShoutCast, and can retrieve lyrics for the playing track. You can even check up the current track’s information on Wikipedia, right within the player itself.
All in all, this is a great music player with plenty of useful features.
3. Quod Libet
Other than playing music, Quod Libet has a simple interface that only shows what you want to see. It has a clean interface, yet able to display the required information all in one place. At any point of time, you can choose from the ‘View’ option to get it to show either your playlist, album list, filesystem or internet radio.
It is also integrated with Ex falso, a program that allows you to add, edit and organize your MP3 metadata, to help you better manage your MP3′s. Quod Libet is not as feature-rich as Amarok or Banshee, but if you are looking for a music player where you can organize the music your way, then Quod Libet is the one for you.
Songbird is a music player and a web browser. It is also a web media stream player. I hope I didn’t get you confused, but that is really what Songbird is. Built with codes from Firefox and VLC, Songbird is a desktop music player with web browsing capabilities. Like Firefox, it supports tabbed browsing and add-ons. When you chance upon any sites with media content, it will automatically list the media files in a separate pane for easy download and/or streaming.
It is also compatible with most, or all of VLC’s features, which makes it a versatile audio/video player that can play almost every file format you throw at it.
Overall, its web browsing capabilities and its abilities to play a wide range of file formats easily makes it one of the best, if not the best media player around.
When compared to powerhouses such as Amarok, Decibel Audio Player is really a decimal of it. The basic install of Decibel does not come with anything. Yes, you heard me right, I really mean anything. It doesn’t support any visualization, album artwork, radio streaming, podcast or anything else. It does in fact do only one thing: play music. It is very useful if you just want to play your music and not be bothered or distracted by any other miscellaneous stuff.
Do you have any other favourite music players for Linux not mentioned here? Drop the link to them in the comments and tell us why you like them!
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