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foobar2000 is a plain application that acts as an audio player. In addition, you can use it as a CD ripper and quick audio file converter.
When installing the program, you notice that there are two available modes: you can either choose a standard installation for running the app strictly on your computer, or an alternative one compatible with portable devices. Once the app is launched, you see a rather unimpressive interface. However, the appearance is very much configurable in terms of colors, main and playlist layouts; yet, getting a more attractive GUI implies multiple trials and, in my opinion, it is unreasonably time consuming.
Besides its main function, which is playing audio files, foobar2000 comes with some smart features that differentiate it from similar programs. For instance, you can enable a gapless playback and thus listen to sequential tracks without annoying interruptions in-between songs. Another interesting option is a consistent playback loudness for all files of your collection. This technique enables adjusting the amplitude of the waveform which is different from peak normalization provided by this type of software .
What's more, this utility offers a quick solution for converting audio files. You simply add the tracks intended for conversion to a playlist and select the desired target format. In addition, the program comes with an advanced tagging ability that enables you to edit most of the metadata values.
foobar2000 is a decent application that can be set as your default player for audio tracks. However, I personally find it unpleasant and rather difficult to use because of the inadequately organized menu. Yet, it is worth appreciating the effort to provide special functions such as gapless playback and ReplayGain.
- Free tool
- Can be set as your default audio player
- Gapless playback and ReplayGain features
- Provides advanced tagging abilities
- Inadequately organized menu
- Some options are available from within the drop-down menu, other functions are to be found with right-clicking the main layout
- No advanced converting features