- Best Audiophile Music Player For Mac 2017
- Best Audiophile Music Player For Windows
- Best Audio Player Mac
Elmedia Player is a media player for Mac OS that can serve you as a free music player for Mac with the highest standards of playback. It works with iTunes content smoothly no matter the format: MP3, MP4, or audio CDs. This app can go well as a music downloader and audio receiver. It can stream the music to a computer with larger speakers connected.
Windows 10 comes with both Windows Media Player, as well as the Groove Music app and they are both fairly decent, but they are incapable of playing many popular file formats and also lack the tools that power users crave for. While these software gets the job done for most people, audiophiles in need of something more can have access to a wealth of features by choosing quality third-party music players fir Windows that can make listening to music an absolute pleasure.
But are customization tools and complex playback controls needed by all? No, because some people just want a simple music player that is fast, lightweight and elegant. Keeping in mind the diverse needs of users, we have compiled a list of the top 10 best music players for Windows you can find right now. So, let’s get straight to the point and check what these music players bring to the table and what sets them apart.
The Best Music Players for Windows
I have used many music players on my PC over the years, but none has proved to be as impressive as Dopamine. This software’s minimalist design blends particularly well with Windows 10’s dark and light themes, and its UI is one of the cleanest I have ever seen in a music player. All the options for opening the songs list, artists, albums, etc. are neatly laid out on the home screen, giving Dopamine an identity of its own when compared with the cluttered design of other music player software.
Dopamine can play songs in a wide array of formats such as WAV, MP3, OGG Vorbis, FLAC, WMA, APE, and M4A/AAC among others, all of which are the most widely used file-types for audio tracks these days. The settings menu is quite well-decked too, allowing users to control variables like audio latency, background adjustment tools and a host of others. Dopamine also boasts of Last.fm integration and also offers a nifty lyrics download tool that allows users to add lyrics to their song collection from sources like MetroLyrics, LyricWiki, etc. located in the settings menu itself.
Supported Platforms: Windows 10, 8 and 7
Download Dopamine (Free)
Next in the list is Foobar2000, which is one of the most popular music players for Windows, and for a good reason. Foobar2000’s USP is its interface, which is even more minimalist and clean-looking than Dopamine. But don’t let the simple Windows Phone-esque black and white theme fool you, as the software is loaded with more tools and customization options than any other music player out there. The software comes with its own ReplayGain tool as well as an impressive DSP manager, aside from FTP and media server tools.
When it comes it to executing its fundamental task, Foobar2000 is no slouch, as the software has support for audio codecs such as MP3, MP4, AAC, CD Audio, WMA, Vorbis, Opus, FLAC to name just a few. Foobar2000’s advanced search feature is quite handy too, while its automatic library monitoring system keeps an eye on changes like addition and deletion of songs and accordingly manages the audio file elements like cover photos, lyrics, artist photo, etc.
Supported Platforms: Windows 10, iOS, and Android
Download Foobar2000 (Free)
3. Music Bee
Music is not just limited to the audio files stored locally on our devices, as there are a host of other media such as radio, podcasts, etc. where one can enjoy their love for music. If you are among the folks who listen to music from varied sources, MusicBee is the perfect software for you, as it brings the convenience of enjoying radio shows, podcasts, and locally stored songs in one slick-looking app. But is that all? Absolutely not. From my experience, I can confidently say that MusicBee is one of the most feature-laden music player apps you can find. From core music library management and automatic file organization to in-depth playback controls and aesthetic tools, the app simply has it all.
Aside from codecs like MP3, M4A, FLAC, Musepack, WavPack and Opus among others, MusicBee also supports audio interfaces like WASAPI and ASIO for high-end audio cards. The music player software also features a particularly useful tag update feature, which automatically identifies tracks with missing tags and updates them. Moreover, MusicBee also has support for WinAmp plugins and can synchronize songs and playlists with Android devices too.
Best Audiophile Music Player For Mac 2017
Supported Platform: Windows 10, 8 and 7
Download MusicBee (Free)
If you know your way around a music player and like to personalize even the most basic elements of the software, then AIMP is your best bet. Take for example its rich sound mixing options and the excellent sound engine section, which features an impressive 18-band equalizer and numerous sound effects like Reverb, Flanger, Enhancer, etc. which really work and are far from software gimmicks. Another noteworthy feature of AIMP is the Audio CD Grabber, which allows users to copy music files from an audio CD.
As far as codec support is concerned, AIMP plays well with the largest selection of audio standards I’ve ever seen in a music player. Aside from support for formats like CDA, AAC, AC3, APE, DTS, and FLAC among others, the app also has output support for DirectSound, ASIO, and WASAPI among others. MusicBee also has a nifty system shutdown feature which allows users to set a timer to shut down their PC at the scheduled time or after finishing a particular song. There is also a fairly advanced tag editor which supports standards like ID3v1, ID3v2, APE, and WMA to name a few.
Supported Platforms: Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7 and Vista
Download AIMP Music Player (Free)
MediaMonkey is another feature-laden media player which is tailor-made for folks who like every detail of their music collection right on the home screen, and also want the software to keep their music library organized. For the latter, MediaMonkey’s automatic organization algorithm systematically arranges the audio files into folders based on artists, albums, series number, etc. Moreover, the MediaMonkey’s CD burner feature allows users to import songs from a CD, while its Podcatcher functionality lets users download podcasts.
Moving over to the technical aspects, MediaMonkey supports a wide array of audio playback formats such as MP3, AAC (M4A), OGG, WMA, and FLAC among others. The app also allows users to create a statistical table of their entire music collection and also sync it with Android and iOS devices. MediaMonkey also facilitates media sharing with TVs and other devices over UPnP and DLNA. Moreover, the software’s jukebox mode is a neat addition which automatically plays tracks of a particular genre to uplift your mood or keep the party going.
Supported Platforms: Windows 10, 8, 7 and Android
Download MediaMonkey (Free)
If the idea of a lightweight music player app with a simple UI, rich audio codec support, and a clean design sounds appealing to you, then Winyl is the music player app you need. The ‘no-frills-no-fuss’ app can easily handle over 100,000+ audio files without a hiccup, and also features a dedicated radio section to let you tune in to your favorite shows on air and enjoy music from various genre. The app also has a ‘Smartlist’ feature’ which automatically creates playlists (25 Most Played, 5 Random Albums, etc.) for an added dash of convenience.
Winyl can play audio files of various formats (WMA, M4A, MP3, OGG, MPC, APE, FLAC, etc.) and also supports audio output in standards like WASAPI and ASIO. And hey, Gapless playback is also on the table, so you won’t be annoyed while waiting for the next song in the queue to actually start playing. The app can also import song lyrics from the web and is also equipped with a fairly efficient tag editor.
Supported Platforms: Windows 10, 8, 7, and Vista
Download Winyl (Free)
Clementine is among the most popular music player apps for Windows, and its popularity has a lot to do with its versatility and simplistic interface (which looks ancient compared to the design of other names mentioned earlier). But don’t let aesthetics deceive you, as the app is loaded with the widest array of online connectivity tools and music streaming options you’ll see in a music player app. Not only can you enjoy songs from services like Spotify, Grooveshark, SomaFM, etc. you can also play songs stored on the cloud (Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive among others).
Clementine can play audio files of various formats like FLAC, MP3, and AAC to name just a few, and can also transcode songs into codecs such as MP3, OGG Vorbis, OGG Speex and FLAC among others. Moreover, it can also be controlled remotely with Android smartphones via a companion app. The music player software also features an excellent library management algorithm and can also update the songs that are missing album cover art details by downloading them automatically from the web.
Supported Platforms: Windows, Linux, and macOS
Download Clementine (Free)
8. Bread Player
Bread Player is a free, open source music player for Windows platform that will catch your interest from the very first time you fire it up, thanks to its eye-catching design. But far from being an eye-candy, Bread Player is actually a very capable, open-source music player app which has all the bells and whistles of a conventional music player app.
Bread Players supports a wide array of audio codecs viz. MP3, M4A, FLAC to name just a few. But what’s impressive is the fact that unlike other music player app, the app automatically retrieves local audio files, which means you don’t have to manually search for audio files and add them to the library. Apart from that, the app also comes with synced lyrics support and an automatic download feature that fetches missing artist details of a track. And as an added bit of convenience for users, the app also offers OneDrive streaming to let users stream their songs stored on the cloud.
Supported Platform: Windows 10
Download Bread Player ($1.99)
Winamp, the old horse, yet still in the race. Despite being around two decades old, Winamp has continuously been refined over the years by the addition of new features. In my opinion, Winamp’s UI gives you the true feeling of using a music player app, thanks to the systematic arrangement of tools and the detailed interface which is rich in features and playback controls.
Winamp has support for a wide array of contemporary as well as specialized audio formats such as MP3, AAC, FLAC, WAV, and OGG Vorbis to name just a few. Winamp can import music files from local folders, iTunes as well as audio CDs. Aside from audio playback, Winamp also facilitates streaming via podcasts, Internet radio and a couple of other media, and also offers Gapless audio playback for an uninterrupted music listening experience.
Supported Platforms: Windows 10, 8, 7 and Vista
Download Winamp (Free)
Audacious is another music player whose simplistic design approach and clean UI will win you over. But that doesn’t mean the software is lacking in tools and controls. Once you open the settings menu, you’ll discover a rich selection of tools ranging from effects like Crystalizer, LADSPA Host and Voice Removal to artist detail retrieval feature among a host of others. Audacious also features an audio bit depth control feature, ReplayGain, stream record functionality as well as support for plug-ins.
When it comes to music playback, Audacious supports a wide array of audio formats such as FLAC, WMA, AAC, WAV, and OGGto name just a few. You can also tweak the music player software’s interface to look like Winamp Classic’s and also enable proxy usage from its network settings section. Despite its vintage aesthetics, Audacious is quite an advanced music player and can easily handle whatever task you throw at it with ease.
Supported Platforms: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, XP and Linux
Download Audacious (Free)
SEE ALSO: 10 Best Video Players for Windows
Choose the Best Music Player Software for Windows
Before you go ahead and proceed to download one of the software listed above, we’d advise you to go through the details and choose which music player suits your requirements. If you are after a clutter-free design and minimalist appeal, then Dopamine, Bread Player, and Winyl are your best options. However, if you like to play with tools and want a deep level of customization controls at your disposal, then AIMP, MusicBee, and MediaMonkey will serve you well.
So, that was our recommendation list. Do you have any music player in mind which stands out from its lot in a prominent fashion and offers some unique and useful features? If yes, then head to the comments section below to spread your knowledge and be someone’s savior.
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The introduction of the MP3 player enabled people to play their music anywhere, but it has had an unfortunate side effect: Folks have sacrificed the awesome audio quality that the compact disc delivered in exchange for ever tinier music players, simpler room-to-room streaming, and the flexibility to buy songs instead of entire albums. So while the convenience of digital media just keeps getting better, the sound quality itself has suffered.
It doesn’t have to be that way. You can get sublime audio quality from compressed music files—files that you can store on a central server and listen to in any room in your house, and transfer to an MP3 player for enjoying just about anywhere.
I’ll show you how to rip tracks from CD and encode them to FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec), which will deliver compressed but bit-by-bit accurate copies of your music (much in the way that zipping a text file with a compression algorithm can reduce the size of the file without losing any of the text). All you need is a PC with an optical drive, some free software, and your collection of audio CDs.
I’ll also discuss several hardware products that can stream music from your PC or network-attached storage (NAS) device to your home stereo system, even though they may be in separate parts of your home. And as a bonus, I’ll teach you how to calibrate your speakers to your listening environment to achieve the absolute best sound possible.
If you buy music online because you’re interested in acquiring specific songs, consider that most online music merchants—including Apple’s iTunes store—don’t offer high-quality music. They use lossy codecs such as MP3 and AAC with bit rates that max out at 256 kilobits per second. They want you to cram as much music as possible on your PC or portable device with little regard for audio fidelity. When you listen to music encoded this way, you’re not hearing everything that the recording artist created.
Buying and ripping CDs is old-fashioned, but in doing so you enjoy much higher audio quality (and you have a factory-made copy of your music in case your hard drive ever fails). If you can’t bring yourself to buy an entire CD to acquire one track, you can find a handful of online retailers selling music encoded in lossless formats. Music Giants, the biggest fish in this small pond, offers a broad range of pop, classic rock, jazz, and world music encoded in the WMA Lossless format. Linn Records presents a fine collection of classical, jazz, and Celtic music encoded in the FLAC, WMA Lossless, and MP3 formats. Much of the Music Giants catalog is free from DRM restrictions; none of Linn Records’ offerings is saddled with the annoying technology.
Music Streaming Systems
Best Audiophile Music Player For Windows
The Sonos Digital Music System and Slim Devices’ Squeezebox Classic and Squeezebox Duet are some of the best audio-streaming products on the market. All three enable a do-it-yourselfer to assemble a sophisticated multiroom audio setup for a fraction of the price of a custom-installed system.
Plenty of other alternatives are on the market—including Media Center Extenders that can stream both audio and video from a host PC, NAS box, or central server to your entertainment system—but if you’re looking for high-quality audio, these three products deliver tremendous price/performance ratios.
Best Audio Player Mac
These devices can operate on either wireless or wired ethernet networks; the Sonos can create its own proprietary wireless network so that streaming music won’t consume your other Wi-Fi network’s bandwidth.
The Sonos music streaming system and the Logitech Silm Devices Squeezebox both support FLAC, but neither supports WMA Lossless. The Squeezebox does come with PC software that can transcode WMA Lossless files on the fly, but that requires storing your WMA Lossless files on a PC as opposed to a NAS box (since that kind of device can’t run the software). You’ll have to transcode DRM-free WMA Lossless files yourself in order to stream that music on a Sonos system (a tedious process that’s impossible with encrypted files).