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Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Best Media Player, Bar None

I have been playing with a media organizer/player that is so superior to everything else out there, I have to comment about it. This is the "Media Monkey". On the surface, it looks about equal to "Itunes" or "Winamp" but the surface is where the similarity ends. This is an amazing program. It has taken me about a week to learn how to exploit some of its capabilities and it is well worth the time spent. If you give it a fair chance, you will dump Itunes in a flash. "Out of the Box", it will do everything that Itunes does and better. Looking at details of customization including plugins and scripting capabilities will uncover something that could only be accomplished in an open source environment.

Media Monkey is primarily intended to just catalog and play common audio files such as MP3, FLAC and WAV but there is a plugin for MIDI as well. All the features of Itunes such as tagging from web databases is included. There is even the ability to play internet radio, manage podcasts etc. What makes it so different is the ability to customize virtually every aspect of the program and also to install plugins and scripts contributed by others. One of these scripts allows you to add meta data from text files. If you can create a text file for each of your multimedia files, you can import the tags to Media Monkey. So???? This is incredibly powerful. I have written a script that creates these required text files from a tabbed delimited text file. You can therefore do all your editing in a text editor or in excel and dump the tags to your media library. You don't have to edit the tags one at a time. If you already have the data in a file or database, you can easily convert it to the simple tabbed text format and save countless hours of editing.

I have created a file for all of my E-Rolls and emulation files so any of my customers ( now use Media Monkey to organize and play their files. Media Monkey has no problem slurping tags from MP3 files but we who use MIDI have been left in the dark until now.

I have also been using Media Monkey as the force behind a very inexpensive media file storage and playing system that can be assembled for very little money and that can produce excellent audio. It has been tested on a fine stereo system, the like of which I will never personally own. I will be posting some details about this system in the near future.

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