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New to managing music through Windows. Software advice needed!

KrisKris Registered User regular
Hey all. So I just made the switch from using a mac exclusively at home for as long as I can remember, to now using a custom built Windows 7 machine. I support Windows machines at work so I'm comfortable with the OS, but I'm not familiar with media management software for Windows and what's actually worth using. I did a google search on the forums for essential windows software, but most of the threads were fairly old.

Before on my Macbook, I was using iTunes to manage my music collection, rip CD's, and sync with my iPhone and iPad, but I've read that iTunes under Windows isn't as great (resource hog). I have no issues with trying out other pieces of software if they perform better.

I would like to know what my best bet is for software to replace the functionality I mentioned above. I'm assuming I'll still have to have iTunes on my system for updating my iPhone and iPad software. Is Foobar2000 good as a hub for all my music? Can I sync music to my iPhone through something other than iTunes? What's good for ripping CD's to FLAC and m4a without too much hassle? Like I said, all I've really used is iTunes previously, so I don't really know what else is available to me now.

Thanks in advance for any help! :D

Kris on

Posts

  • GnomeTankGnomeTank What the what? Portland, OregonRegistered User regular
    I just use iTunes. There are certainly lighter weight programs out there (WinAmp is still in heavy use, after all these years), but my hardware is beefcake and I'll never notice the extra resources it takes.

    The sync question: Not easily. There used to be some third party programs (Red Chair's Anapod Explorer comes to mind), but I have no idea if any of them work with newer iOS hardware (Anapod was written for old school iPods). For modern iOS devices, the safest sync is through iTunes.

    Sagroth wrote: »
    Oh c'mon FyreWulff, no one's gonna pay to visit Uranus.
    Steam: Brainling, XBL / PSN: GnomeTank, NintendoID: Brainling, FF14: Zillius Rosh SFV: Brainling
  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    Stick with iTunes. It does use a bit more in the way of resources, but nothing actually noticeable.

  • DehumanizedDehumanized Registered User regular
    with apple devices, whether it's good on the platform or not, you are pretty much chained to itunes

  • KrisKris Registered User regular
    Thanks for the advice guys. Good to know iTunes is still decent under Windows. Installing now. :)

  • TavTav Irish Minister for DefenceRegistered User regular
    Kris wrote: »
    Thanks for the advice guys. Good to know iTunes is still decent under Windows. Installing now. :)

    Well, no, it's fucking awful. It's just your one real option.

  • KrisKris Registered User regular
    Haha, fair enough.

  • FremFrem Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    I love Foobar2000, and it's really lightweight, but it requires quite a bit of (rather user unfriendly) customization and plugins to be great.

    Frem on
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    Tav wrote: »
    Kris wrote: »
    Thanks for the advice guys. Good to know iTunes is still decent under Windows. Installing now. :)

    Well, no, it's fucking awful. It's just your one real option.

    Yeah, this is pretty much it--I don't know of any other way to organize music onto an iPhone and iPad myself. It's not that it's more awful than it was five years ago, when it was really awful--it's just that pretty much all music organizing software, including Microsoft's own, have gotten better with time, meaning iTunes for Windows is horrible by comparison.

    On the bright side, you don't have to re-tag anything, I think.

  • GnomeTankGnomeTank What the what? Portland, OregonRegistered User regular
    edited August 2012
    I'll really never understand the "GOD ITUNES SO TERRIBLE" thing. I mean...it plays music, it shuffles, it sorts, it lets me make little playlists and folders, and it syncs to my iDevices...what more is it supposed to do that I am missing? Or what does it do "wrong" that I don't see?

    I mean, I get it..heavyweight, proprietary, required to deal with iOS...but I mean, I don't load it up and just scream at it about how terrible it is. I press the play button and go about my day.

    GnomeTank on
    Sagroth wrote: »
    Oh c'mon FyreWulff, no one's gonna pay to visit Uranus.
    Steam: Brainling, XBL / PSN: GnomeTank, NintendoID: Brainling, FF14: Zillius Rosh SFV: Brainling
  • DehumanizedDehumanized Registered User regular
    GnomeTank wrote: »
    I'll really never understand the "GOD ITUNES SO TERRIBLE" thing. I mean...it plays music, it shuffles, it sorts, it lets me make little playlists and folders, and it syncs to my iDevices...what more is it supposed to do that I am missing? Or what does it do "wrong" that I don't see?

    I mean, I get it..heavyweight, proprietary, required to deal with iOS...but I mean, I don't load it up and just scream at it about how terrible it is. I press the play button and go about my day.

    I believe you just nailed the reasons why.

  • GnomeTankGnomeTank What the what? Portland, OregonRegistered User regular
    None of those things illicit reactions like "it's fucking awful" from me. They are annoyances, not non-starters. And really, the only really annoying one is the required to deal with iOS, the rest I think are absolute non issues for the modern computer user, except on purely ideological or philosophical grounds. Barring people with 10 year old email checkers of course.

    At any rate, this is sort of way off the rails of the thread. People are free to hate or be ambivalent about iTunes as they see fit.

    Sagroth wrote: »
    Oh c'mon FyreWulff, no one's gonna pay to visit Uranus.
    Steam: Brainling, XBL / PSN: GnomeTank, NintendoID: Brainling, FF14: Zillius Rosh SFV: Brainling
  • AlectharAlecthar Alan Shore We're not territorial about that sort of thing, are we?Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    GnomeTank wrote: »
    None of those things illicit reactions like "it's fucking awful" from me. They are annoyances, not non-starters. And really, the only really annoying one is the required to deal with iOS, the rest I think are absolute non issues for the modern computer user, except on purely ideological or philosophical grounds. Barring people with 10 year old email checkers of course.

    At any rate, this is sort of way off the rails of the thread. People are free to hate or be ambivalent about iTunes as they see fit.

    My iTunes frequently freezes virtually at random, necessitating ending the process. It crashes fairly often, eats memory, and the download manager kinda sucks ass. From a stability and reliability standpoint it has, at least for me, blown chunks for a while. As a music player, though, I've yet to find one I like better. Even skinned, WinAmp looks to me like a refugee from the early 2000s, all neon on black with unnecessary windows littered about the place. Songbird irritates me in a profound way, I didn't really dig Clementine, and Banshee's not ready for prime-time on Windows. I kinda hate iTunes as a whole, but the music library and player part of iTunes is relatively clean, pretty, and simple enough for me to use it without straining any mental muscles.

    Alecthar on
    Tef
  • TefTef Registered User regular
    Actually, I have an iTunes question that I may as well dump here

    Why would my iTunes library keep on reverting back to it's default location in My Music? I really don't want to have my music hogging up room on my 128gb OS SSD, but no matter how many times I set the library location to a partition on a mechanical drive, it reverts back to the default location

    As for my workaround for managing my iphone and ipad, you can do all the syncing and stuff via wifi now. You can do your backups, firmware updates and content synching without iTunes on a desktop/notebook that I just don't have a reason to install iTunes

    help a fellow forumer meet their mental health care needs because USA healthcare sucks!

    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better

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  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited September 2012
    Alecthar wrote: »
    GnomeTank wrote: »
    None of those things illicit reactions like "it's fucking awful" from me. They are annoyances, not non-starters. And really, the only really annoying one is the required to deal with iOS, the rest I think are absolute non issues for the modern computer user, except on purely ideological or philosophical grounds. Barring people with 10 year old email checkers of course.

    At any rate, this is sort of way off the rails of the thread. People are free to hate or be ambivalent about iTunes as they see fit.

    My iTunes frequently freezes virtually at random, necessitating ending the process. It crashes fairly often, eats memory, and the download manager kinda sucks ass. From a stability and reliability standpoint it has, at least for me, blown chunks for a while. As a music player, though, I've yet to find one I like better. Even skinned, WinAmp looks to me like a refugee from the early 2000s, all neon on black with unnecessary windows littered about the place. Songbird irritates me in a profound way, I didn't really dig Clementine, and Banshee's not ready for prime-time on Windows. I kinda hate iTunes as a whole, but the music library and player part of iTunes is relatively clean, pretty, and simple enough for me to use it without straining any mental muscles.

    As already covered, what is "horrible" is comparative. iTunes has these features when other software doesn't (but did originally). Putting those crashing/freezing/not caring what directories you set problems aside, I'm not a huge fan of the interface. I would agree that it's now better than WinAmp, but the last time I used WinAmp was five years ago, probably more. Not a terribly high bar. Compared to other software, it's....eh...very meh.

    If @GnomeTalk doesn't care about those issues (or doesn't have them), all for the better, but the rest of us dislike crashing and iTunes being committed to its own folder structure (that's the most memorable part of its experience to me) aren't exactly being unreasonable. Apparently this is not an issue in OS X, which would severely improve the product overall.

    EDIT: Of course, for those of us with WP7, if the Zune software is fucking up, we've got few choices either (since, like iTunes, it comes as the only gateway to a device sort of considerable modification).

    Synthesis on
  • KrisKris Registered User regular
    Tef wrote: »
    Actually, I have an iTunes question that I may as well dump here

    Why would my iTunes library keep on reverting back to it's default location in My Music? I really don't want to have my music hogging up room on my 128gb OS SSD, but no matter how many times I set the library location to a partition on a mechanical drive, it reverts back to the default location

    As for my workaround for managing my iphone and ipad, you can do all the syncing and stuff via wifi now. You can do your backups, firmware updates and content synching without iTunes on a desktop/notebook that I just don't have a reason to install iTunes

    Weird, I did the same thing and haven't had any issues this past week. I'm assuming we did the same thing anyways. I went to my user directory, right clicked My Music, went to the location tab, and set it to a "Music" directory I created on a secondary drive (made sure to select the "copy all files to new location" option). Once I opened iTunes again I didn't even have to change the default directory it uses, it just started showing my D:/Music folder as the default, and it has stuck that way since.

    If you did the same steps as above, then I dunno. Reinstall iTunes?

  • TefTef Registered User regular
    Huh. No, that's not what I did :)

    I tries to set it through iTunes, it wouldn't work the three times I tried so I just deleted iTunes!

    Thanks for the heads up!

    help a fellow forumer meet their mental health care needs because USA healthcare sucks!

    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better

    bit.ly/2XQM1ke
  • valgomirvalgomir Registered User regular
    I used iTunes for a while after getting an iPod, but it had really bad stability issues.
    Then a new WinAmp version came around that added the ability to sync your music in your iPod and PC, so I went for that.
    I have yet to encounter a single bug in WinAmp after using it for years.
    I don't share @Alecthar's issues with it. I actually love all the windows giving you fast access to any media you might want to view, and being able to create extensive and diverse playlists in a very short time. As for the color schemes, there are plenty and you can just as well make them yourself.

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