Best Mac audio player?

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by ShadowXOR, Jul 27, 2008.

  1. ShadowXOR macrumors regular

    Jun 3, 2008
    I'm getting my first Mac and I've been using Windows for ages and Winamp has always been my favorite...I'm going to miss it. I don't like iTunes at all. What is the best Mac music player? Thanks.
  2. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3


    Apr 6, 2007
    Portland, OR
    iTunes is the best. It's complete crap on Windows but is great on OSX.
  3. richard.mac macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2007
    51.50024, -0.12662
    well i was going to say iTunes which actually uses Mac OS X's QuickTime layer to play audio. but theres also VLC, Songbird (looks like iTunes but allows plug-ins). i dont think theres a full version of Winamp for Mac yet but Googling for "winamp + mac os x" bring up a few results.

    im assuming you dont like iTunes becuase you are used to its slow, annoying Windows cousin, or you dont like how it lists songs of the same artist or you just dont like how Apple forces you to use iTunes to sync an iPod.

    i cant help you with the last one but you could try giving iTunes a try on Mac OS X as its fast and integrates with the system very well and you could try clicking the eye button on the bottom right to view genres, artists and albums without repeats for evey song.
  4. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3


    Apr 6, 2007
    Portland, OR
    songbird is too slow and too buggy to be used as a primary jukebox on OSX right now :( but it is awful pretty
  5. ShadowXOR thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 3, 2008
  6. richard.mac macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2007
    51.50024, -0.12662
    its developed by the same company that develops the OS that it runs on! uses the QuickTime framework to play media rather than using QuickTime for Windows which is installed alongside iTunes.

    umm opens faster! seriously try it! :)
  7. mannix87 macrumors 6502

    Nov 16, 2005
    in the southeast
    I can assure you, you're not going to miss it.:rolleyes:
  8. Killyp macrumors 68040


    Jun 14, 2006
    I used to have the same attitude as you, as I was used to iTunes in Windows (which is terribly slow and buggy), whilst iTunes in OS X is almost a completely different piece of software...
  9. Robbb macrumors newbie

    Nov 10, 2009
    Anything new from Mac music players in the last year or so?

    Here's what I don't like about iTunes and why I need to switch:

    - can't play ogg files and my whole collection is oggs (makes you feel like you're on Win95 again...)
    - random play is broken -- the "random order" is always the same
    - doesn't let me add my own radio stations (Apple defines what radio I can listen to?!) and I can't even delete the pre-defined ones
    - doesn't let me adjust volume while it's bufferring a stream -- each time I go from a low radio station to a loud one I need to remember to adjust volume or get blared at
    - to subscribe to a free podcast, I now need to register with Apple store (WTF?!)

    The last one totally did it for me. I do not share my data with Apple, period.

    I looked into Amarok, but unfortunately that seems to pull in a lot of KDE dependencies.
    The Songbird idea seems like overkill -- an extra browser? Doesn't that include all the well known attacks and problems we see every day on the web?
    I don't want the Windows media player cause that seems to be trading pest for cholera.

    Any other suggestions?

    Thanks in advance,

  10. Cromulent macrumors 603


    Oct 2, 2006
    The Land of Hope and Glory
  11. anjin macrumors newbie

    Dec 27, 2008
    I feel your pain.. I switched to Macs about 3 years ago and have been grudgingly using iTunes ever since. On Windows I used Media Monkey and on Linux I used Amarok .. both put iTunes to shame. iTunes insists that you do everything the "Apple Way". I like a little more control over my media. As I use an iPhone though, there's no getting away from iTunes at this point.

    I pray that Amarok finally gets an official port to OSX, as the current methods of installing it are a bit too hacky and buggy for my tastes. If you ever have access to a Linux box though (particularly one using KDE) check Amarok out. It's easily the best jukebox app ever created.

    Songbird is just too buggy right now but shows a lot of promise. Problem is though, they've showed that promise for years now and STILL haven't delivered.

    I've heard good things about DoubleTwist, not sure if it plays OGG though. I know I'd be thrilled to have a good Mac jukebox that handled FLAC natively. Why does Apple have such an issue supporting FLAC, OGG and other formats anyway?
  12. The Frantic Ant macrumors newbie

    Jan 2, 2010
    So, I too am having a problem finding a suitable music prog. I have recently switched from windows and my major problem is not that i don't like itunes (i am a dj and have synced it with my dj software so i cannot use it as my day-to-day player) but that finder does not allow me to view artist and album name - something one takes for granted as part and parcel of file browsing coming from windows.
    i have tried alternatives to finder but nothing has the options i require.
    to elaborate, my problem is that I keep all my music on an external hard drive, and browse it for tune picking purposes (for work). i used to just drag and drop using winamp and vlc but now that's not good enough as i often don't know what i'm dragging and dropping (compilations etc).
    had a look at songbird (well, i got it yesterday, so am still exploring - i like how you can import the song names without it needing the songs to 'be there').
    so basically i would love for someone to either suggest how i can browse an external hard drive and view artist and album name or, as the original poster wanted - suggest a good music player.

    p.s. i keep my music on an external hard drive because there is too much to put on my mac, the only stuff i keep on the mac is the tunes for djing.
  13. The Frantic Ant macrumors newbie

    Jan 2, 2010
    a reply to the original...

    vlc sounds like it could work for you (unless you're in the same position as me), it ain't pretty but it will play all file types you can throw at it.
  14. daddyg macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2010
    Peterborough, UK.
    OSX media player.

    Hey there. N new user, first post.

    I've been a Windoze user for many years but recently got my first Mac. Although a Level 2 Mac\PC support engineer (i.e. I can sort most niggles out, but happily there have been very few!) this media player problem has been my one real frustration.

    I have (like yourself) got a large amount of music on external and not enough space on my Macbook for all of it. I don't want iTunes to catalogue it. I want to browse my hard disks myself and cue up in Winamp. Found almost no file formats Winamp couldn't play and for those - VLC.

    I find Finder (in many ways) not as good as explorer, so it looks like bootcamp with XP for me, much to my disappointment - since moving to Snow Leopard I have developed a healthy hatred for Microsoft. But that's another story! (Where's them NTFS codes Gates!)

    Good luck
  15. coolmacguy macrumors regular

    Dec 6, 2002
    Because it's existed on the Mac for many more years than it has on Windows. It never sucked on the Mac. It was based on a program that even preceded OS X. It is a very mature app on the Mac side.

    Then Apple decided that they wanted to have a Windows version, and they decided that despite it being Windows, they wanted to keep the OS X look and feel, so they had to completely rewrite it for windows while still trying to make it function like it did on OS X. Let's just say they failed miserably.
  16. didii macrumors newbie

    Aug 28, 2010
    I totally agree! Only the random play isn't broken.. That is just a system iTunes uses (what I think is totally ridiculous). When you select a song it automatically makes a random order of all songs in the selected playlist. And it will always use the same random order until you select another playlist and it will overwrite the previous order. However, it makes no sense...
    The only thing I like about iTunes: it is properly synchronized with other programs like Limewire.

    About QuickTime: It can't even play .wav-files???!!! I once found a package with almost all codecs for QuickTime. That was quite helpful. If you wan't I'll try to search for it again. It was a link on rapidshare or something. But then again you don't have a good playlist...

    VLC is quite good, but it's not a good music-player, is it? I use it for movies cause once again you don't have a good playlist.

    Apple has the best OS, why can't they make any proper programs??? QuickTime, iTunes, Finder, CleanMyMac, Mail, Bonjour, etc. are all like those programs...

    EDIT: the rest of the programs I don't know 'cause I'm still quite new on Mac :) And I found a Winamp for mac, but it's a classic app so it won't run under Snow Leopard..
  17. VoR macrumors 6502a

    Sep 8, 2008
    I use foobar2000 on windows and deadbeef on nix.
    I haven't put a huge amount of effort into finding a decent osx music player/jukebox/database/etc, everything I've tried has been a pretty large let down.
  18. spookynote macrumors newbie

    Sep 4, 2010
    i've also been looking for a new player for mac (because i also hate itunes).

    i just found one called in-stinctiv. do a google search and you should be able to find it. it's light-weight and seems to do the little things right.
  19. Zulithe macrumors member


    Jun 6, 2010
    San Francisco, CA
    I'd say that Songbird is the best iTunes alternative on Mac (sadly no foobar2000 or Winamp on Mac, argh!). They need to focus heavily on increasing performance though (big problem with mozilla programs in general, really); supposedly some of the recent 1.9 nightly builds have been incorporating some performance fixes.
  20. myca macrumors 6502

    Oct 7, 2005
  21. waloshin macrumors 68040

    Oct 9, 2008
    VlC: Best audio/ video player in the world, be in MAC, Linux, Windows, or even bsd.
  22. didii macrumors newbie

    Aug 28, 2010
    Well, I've just tested Songbird and it looks a lot better than iTunes but sadly it has the same random thingy as iTunes which means always the same order..
    When you look a bit closer it's just slightly better than iTunes so actually not worth for replacing iTunes..
    But that's just my thought :)
  23. princedant macrumors newbie

    Oct 14, 2010
    If you are looking for a media player only, I suggest VLC. I have never really been one for library management other than directly through the fiel system as I am frequently changing the machine with which I interact. However VLC is a great multi-platform media player that will certainly meeting your audio playing needs.
  24. tug macrumors 6502

    Feb 3, 2010
    loughborough. u.k.
    by far the best music/mp3 player i have ever used on mac is VOX, it is amazing! i use it together with logitech z2300 set up as a hifi system in my living room. its very lightweight, it also synchs all your library from itunes also it uses drag & drop. just check out the aqualizer! its better than the one in itunes! it is way better than vlc. give it a go you will be glad you did.
  25. dousch macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2010
    While I loved, and used Vox for a couple of months as a replacement mp3-player for Winamp since my Windows-days, I just now found out about "Cog" and instantly realised how much I've missed what a member here already stated: The freedom to que up whatever you want to listen to, and just like in Winamp you can also loop it, take away or add some track and keep looping on through the night, and while at it scrooble to in the, like on iTunes. Vox could loop songs, but it did not count the second and forward play as a scrobble, this gave my most played, favorite songs during my Vox-days only a few listens on

    While it might not clean out your playlist after you've quit, look as lightweight or play the song you've selected automatically, it does everything else wonders.


    My biggest problem with Vox was the playlist, and how it could only be revealed through a small fade-in-fade-out bubble. I remember trying to find ways to sneak in new songs in the playlist without having to autostart a new one.

    Check it out here:

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