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Alternatives to iTunes

Okay so we have all heard everyone whining about iTunes, the main problem for me is that it is only designed for iXXX items, and hence you are tide into using Apple stuff, I like to move my tech around, and see no reason to have to upgrade with in a manufacturers ambit. And now with the new iPhone not working with any of the old iXXX cradles I am keen to move on.
So now I need to replace my iTunes, I have spent a lot of time creating play lists and groupings, and storing MP3 tags and do not want to lose these.

Songbird v2.1.0 Build 2419:

Songbird
This seems to be a popular choice when I search for an alternative, so I downloaded it. Their claim: Songbird. Connecting Fans Everywhere! With a focus on fans, Songbird personalizes music content from the artists you love the most. Download here:

Positives

  • Relatively small download, quick install
  • Imported iTunes Library fine
  • Static Playlists imported are there
  • Tabbed view at the top seems to

Negatives

  • It seems very clunky and the interface is quite old fashioned
  • No Grouping support, in fact Met TAG view very limited
  • No automatic playlists ported across
  • No auto DJ to mix tracks into one another
  • No Genius
Summary good for someone who does not have a history of tags and things in iTunes, not for me.

Clemetine 1.1.1

clemetine
Also well recommended, their claim: Clementine is a multiplatform music player. It is inspired by Amarok 1.4, focusing on a fast and easy-to-use interface for searching and playing your music. Download here clementine-player.org

Positives:

  • Simple Interface
  • Has a remove duplicate songs feature
  • Auto tag complete, interesting but not that functional, as just does standard goodies
  • When playing song tells you radio info
  • Has smart playlists
  • Interesting tag mood
  • Clean uninstall

Negatives:

  • No library import at all, this makes it dead in the water to me
  • After importing library
  • No grouping
  • No auto DJ
  • No Genius
  • Rating of songs not ported when you add the songs
If you want something quick and easy, only a step above VLC as a player

Zune

XBox music
Now Xbox player, and will obviously attract the same anti MS sentiment that seems to still perpetuate the industry, they were the first people forget, just did not make an onlne store quicker. Download here www.xbox.com/en-GB/live/zune

Positives:

  • The interface is awesome after you get used to it
  • Manage all your media here, and seems to support devices besides iXXX

Negatives:

  • Large download, also takes a while (and I mean a while) to install
  • No grouping
  • No Import of iTunes Library, and playlists (there are some third party apps), or needs to be done before (see: www.zunerama.com/forum/index.php?topic=15458.0)
  • No Genius
  • Interface seems imposing at first
  • Need to create an account for extra functionality (not sure what since did not)
  • Rating system too simple
  • Limited Tag information (main reason I do not like it)
  • Uninstall hidden in Control Panel, I know this is the correct place but find it a silly place
This product is Microsoft's attempt, never seems to quite work though.

Media Monkey

media monkey: />
Seems a popular choice too, their claim: music manager and jukebox for large collections of CDs, MP3s and other audio files. Download here <a href=mediamonkey.com/download/

Positives

  • Multi language support
  • Supports Grouping
  • Tabs across the top supported
  • Interface very comprehensive, but takes a while to get to grips with
  • Support for Media Servers
  • After importing library imported, also imports other settings
  • Tag support is comprehensive
  • Auto DJ, although it is via Menu
  • Comprehensive Device support, gives you access to stuff iTunes does not

Negatives:

  • Need to register to get access to some features, and that requires a purchase
  • Apps are not ported (that is not so serious for me)
  • The menu is where you find most of the features, a decent tool bar would be great, you can construct your own, but would be nice to have a good one to start
  • No Genius
  • Grouping does not autofill

This product ticked all the boxes, but the interface needs work, a very old school look, however may be worth the $25

I also tried to download and install Spotify but it gave me some error about not being supported in South Africa.

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