Better playlist functionality than Winamp?
August 18, 2004 6:28 AM   Subscribe

PlaylistFilter: I find Winamp's native playlist manager too restricted. Ideally, I want a plugin/player with a playlist module that can accomodate trees and metadata; the extreme case being where I can have an arbitrary number of fields (incl. trackname, artist, genre, "mood"...etc) and then pass it through selection filters (all Classical which are AT MOST 3 mins AND NOT baroque AND soothing...etc). Of course, this is kinda the ideal case. What's the best realistic solution? (I don't mind switching players).
posted by Gyan to Computers & Internet (11 answers total)
posted by gleuschk at 6:41 AM on August 18, 2004

I really like Media Jukebox. It has unlimited options in constructing trees, a nice filter capability, and is moderately attractive from a UI point-of-view. It also lets you add whole albums to your playlist in track-order (surprising how many players make this so hard!). Unfortunately it is not free (I think I got it for $20?) but it does have a free trial. When I started to digitize my CD collection I looked far and wide for a good player and Media Jukebox seemed to fit the bill best, but I would love to hear other people's recommendations.
posted by Tallguy at 6:43 AM on August 18, 2004

I don't know what the best practical case is, but I really want something along the lines you're talking about, Gyan. I've contemplated hacking on xmms, but I don't really have the time (or, to be honest, the mad skilz).
posted by kenko at 7:54 AM on August 18, 2004

Seriously, iTunes.

I am pretty anal about my Miles Davis idtags and with iTunes I can create fairily complex smart playlists. I put as much information in the comment field, such as other musicians and date and location of recording.

So for example I can create a live playlist for Miles that includes all the tracks WITH Wayne Shorter playing on them but WITHOUT Chick Corea playing and were composed by Miles Davis. I could go further and limit to tracks only recorded in New York and and are longer than X minutes.

It takes a bit of time to get all the information into the tags when you first burn them, but I only do it for certain musicians.

Check out Smartplaylists for other ideas of what you can do with iTunes.

(sorry for sounding like an iTunes shill)
posted by Razzle Bathbone at 9:07 AM on August 18, 2004

Note that in iTunes smart playlists can now reference other playlists in their criteria. The 'comments' tag can be used to store keywords or create other filtering schemes which aren't supported by the rest of the ID3 tags. iTunes can probably handle anything you'd want.
posted by sudama at 10:51 AM on August 18, 2004

Cool! Can my G3 ipod do smart playlists that reference other playlists, too? I know the processing power is kind of limited...
posted by lbergstr at 11:38 AM on August 18, 2004

I'm fairly certain that whatever is in a smart playlist at the time of sync with the iPod is handed as a simple list of songs to the iPod itself -- that way the music player doesn't have to have any smart playlist logic in it.

Or, short answer: Yes.
posted by jammer at 12:37 PM on August 18, 2004

Actually, I'm pretty sure smart playlists are updated dynamically on the iPod. My "Never Played" playlist, for example, gets smaller as I play songs on it. I have to exit the playlist and enter it again for it to be updated, but I don't have to connect it to my PC.
posted by lbergstr at 12:54 PM on August 18, 2004

You are correct, they are dynamic on the iPod. I have several that are based on the time of my commute (35min) and not played in X days and once a song has played through and then I exit the list, it repopulates automatically. Even without syncing.

Sadly a playlist cannot reference another playlist, but that is a big 'can we have this pony please' request that many are asking for.
posted by Razzle Bathbone at 3:09 PM on August 18, 2004

umm.. winamp has been able to do smart playlists for a while now. get the latest version and go to the media library (alt + l), right click "local media," and hit "add smart view." the query builder button in the advanced editor section is probably the most noob-friendly way to go about making your smart playlist... but yeah, i actually have one of these filtered views in winamp:

"all my 192kbps+ rap songs released between 1994-1996, longer than 3:30 and rated higher than +3, with the word 'Awesome' in the comments but never listed as the first song on an album, in my c:\my documents folder, and that i haven't played in a month."

if that's the kind of functionality you're looking for, try playing around with the smart views in winamp.
posted by lotsofno at 3:13 PM on August 18, 2004

iTunes is utter garbage on Windows, in my experience. Dunno how well it works on a Mac.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:55 PM on August 18, 2004

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