MP3 Player for WindowsME
April 6, 2005 8:14 AM   Subscribe

MP3 Player for WindowsME: I'm looking for a free MP3 player that will work with WindowsME.

I cleaned up my harddrive last night, uninstalling programs I don't use anymore, finally finding the spyware files that were driving me crazy and defragging the hard drive. While I was at it, I uninstalled the downloaded MP3 player that I never liked anyway. But now I can't find a replacement.

Must have features: Plays MP3s off a queued list. Fairly simple to use.

Ideal features: Ability to tag and generate playlists based on tags (as per someone else's earlier question, but the suggestions I tried from there (i-tunes, musicCube) don't work on WindowsME). Ability to rip CDs.
posted by duck to Computers & Internet (13 answers total)
What were you using before? And what didn't you like about it?
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 8:40 AM on April 6, 2005

WinAmp is terrific (just avoid their "modern" skin). The regular version is free, and for $14.95, their "Pro" version will rip CDs, into a variety of formats.
posted by curtm at 8:51 AM on April 6, 2005

The free version of Winamp will rip CDs as well... at x2...
posted by muddgirl at 9:23 AM on April 6, 2005

I've recently been turned onto Media Monkey, after my Musicmatch meltdown. It seems great.
posted by Caviar at 9:44 AM on April 6, 2005

Player: 1by1 or the more complex foobar2000.

I would use an external ripper, since most players that have a built in ripper are bloated. For that, you want CDex. LAME mp3 encoding with --alt-preset-standard or some abr bitrate.
posted by easyasy3k at 9:48 AM on April 6, 2005

Zinf is a good, all purpose MP3 player that I used to use (until WinAmp 5 came out). Worth a look if you want something less featured than WinAmp but still good quality and easy to use.
posted by filmgoerjuan at 10:04 AM on April 6, 2005

Response by poster: Thanks...I'm looking up the options offered so far...will any of these allow me to tag with something other than title/artist etc.?

In particular I'm thinking I would like to tag the file with who owns it (multiple people with different musical tastes use the computer) other idiosyncratic tags (e.g. "songs that tell stories")

I think the player I was using before was MusicMatch Jukebox. I just didn't like it...I don't know it was kind of clunky and ugly and messy to work with.
posted by duck at 10:19 AM on April 6, 2005

MusikCube looks pretty nice.
posted by crumbly at 10:42 AM on April 6, 2005

I second Winamp. The overview is quite informative. System requirements here.

Next suggestion is to look for a new operating system. You shouldn't spend too much time trying to get things set up well in ME. They'll never be set up well, and the OS is obsolete, discontinued. Migrating all your stuff off ME will only get harder with time, so use it only as long as you have to.
posted by scarabic at 10:54 AM on April 6, 2005

Response by poster: Meh...ME has been on this computer since I bought it..I'm not going to format the harddrive and risk losing files (yes, i know you back up, but there's always a chance I'll forget something) just so I can have my choice of MP3 players. It works and the computer is already 5 years old, why change now?
posted by duck at 11:23 AM on April 6, 2005

foobar2000 lets you tag with whatever you want to, but the tags will be APEv2, not id3v1 or id3v2. The masstagger is a bit complex but very powerful. foo_freedb (a 3rd party component) will let you do cddb lookups with foo_quicktag will let you automatic tag setting if you do it a lot (like rating +1, rating -1, etc.).

You can get third part components for foobar2000 to do dynamic smart playlists generated as well. foo_genplaylist_ex uses tagz queries to generate playlists (for example, I tag stuff that is live with LIVE=1 and my shuffle everything playlist can do %live% MISSING to check if it isn't there. That combined with %rating% > 2 is what my big shuffle playlist is generated from).

foobar2000 also supports gapless mp3 playback (so Abbey Road doesn't have 1 second gaps in it!) and replaygain (which scans audio files and will automatically adjust the preamp so that everything is the "same" volume without actually normalizing the audio file itself). Replaygain is supported on all file types too, not just oggs and mp3s. Once you get used to it, it's hard to live with out it.

That all said, foobar2000 is pretty complex and may seem dauting at first. But it definitely has room to grow as you demand more out of your player.
posted by cmm at 11:28 AM on April 6, 2005

I was thinking the same thing as scarabic, but didn't post it. Tangent follows:

Almost risk-free upgrade route: buy a new hard drive -- they're pretty cheap. Remove your old hard drive; install the new one as master. Install new OS. Put old hard drive back in as a slave. (Alternatively, get a hard drive enclosure and have it around as removable media.)

Presto! New OS, access to all old data. Unless you do physical damage to the old drive during the process, you'd be hard-pressed to lose anything during all this. (Leaving it outside the case during the installation is belt-and-suspenders -- I leave it in. But there's probably some OS installer somewhere that would let you screw up a slave drive if you asked it to.)
posted by Zed_Lopez at 12:16 PM on April 6, 2005

Sorry - didn't mean to be unhelpful or anything. I just thought it was a worthwile footnote since you seem to be investing time and energy getting your comp the way you want it. Doing that with ME is like pitching your tent in quicksand. There's no need to upgrade just for MP3, certainly. I hope it stays stable for you - I've seen it go suddenly and utterly South in the past, sometimes from something as simple as installing a new application.
posted by scarabic at 1:46 PM on April 6, 2005

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