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Last post Author Topic: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!  (Read 29749 times)

superboyac

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foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« on: September 24, 2006, 03:15:35 AM »
I know I have a lot of posts and threads to catch up on, and I should be studying right now, but I was just checking out foobar, and I like it's features...

However, trying to configure this thing the way I want is making me lose my mind.  Freakin A!  I'm no slouch with computers, but this is just insanity.  Am I really stupid, or is trying to find the answer on "How to's" for foobar an extremely illogical and frustrating experience?!  I've been on the forum, the wiki site, various plugin places, and read the FAQ's.  Almost all of them all completely uninformative.

It took me an hour to figure out where the volume slider was, and then I wanted to actually have a volume slider visible on my main UI, so apparently there's this plugin I need "foo_uie_volume", which is NOWHERE to be found.

Then, on the freakin main website, they have these nice screenshots showing how the various albums in a playlist can be colored separately.  But is there any documentation on how to do it anywhere?  NO!  I searched the forum for the obvious words like "color" "album" "playlist", etc., but nothing turned up.  What the hell are they talking about on those forums in all those threads?  I have no idea.

Anyway, I know somebody here must use foobar, so I'll probably need some coaching.

I think foobar is one of those software where, because it's aimed at powerusers, they have intentionally made the software as hard to figure out as possible.  OK, it's a poweruser program, but it's also a freakin media player, not some complex, flight-simluation software for corn's sake.

Renegade

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2006, 10:24:36 AM »
I think foobar is one of those software where, because it's aimed at powerusers, they have intentionally made the software as hard to figure out as possible.  OK, it's a poweruser program, but it's also a freakin media player, not some complex, flight-simluation software for corn's sake.

You're pretty much bang on the money.

Foobar is like 7-zip (and quite a few others). Good software, with an impossible interface. Neither of the rise to the level of decent usability. The programmers aren't interested in that aspect of software. They're much more interested in the 'guts'. And since they're both open source, anyone could come along and create a decent interface for them.

But then again, they're free. You get what you pay for. In this case, you're paying nothing to get what some kind programmers are interested in. And they're just not that interested in fancy GUIs.
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

Lashiec

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2006, 06:52:29 AM »
To make the volume slider appear, do a double click on the status bar (where it says "x.xx" dB) in foobar 0.9 and above. In 0.8.x you need a plugin indeed. To learn Tagz (foobar2000 own script language), this is an excellent tutorial: http://tagz.brother-john.net/

mouser

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2006, 07:15:22 AM »
someone showed me a column-ui addon for foobar - without that i found the program unusable, but with that it's not bad.

 http://music.morbo.org/columns.php

Renegade

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2006, 08:03:04 AM »
Learning a scripting language just to play some music is a bit overboard. Is there any real benefit?
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

allen

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2006, 03:49:36 PM »
Foobar isn't a media player replacement for you if you just want a simple application that does what you expect it to do.  It's to media players what linux is to operating systems -- potentially immensely versatile/customizable/powerful but inherently unusable for anyone who isn't a geek expecting to spend a great deal of time tweaking.

vegas

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2006, 04:57:51 AM »
You're pretty much bang on the money.

Foobar is like 7-zip (and quite a few others). Good software, with an impossible interface. Neither of the rise to the level of decent usability. The programmers aren't interested in that aspect of software.

You're kidding right?  OMFG foobar has more usability and features than any audio player out there (add plugins too).  It's VERY deep.  It just so happens to also be VERY poorly documented.  Take the time, learn it, it's Uber powerful.  Unfortunately is does feel like learning regex syntax or scripting or another not so learn it in an hour task.

edit by jgpaiva: fixing quote
« Last Edit: September 26, 2006, 09:04:36 AM by jgpaiva »

superboyac

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2006, 10:37:47 AM »
Thanks for the help guys.  That columns ui plugin is essential, mouser, good find.

Vegas, you're right, foobar is very deep.  I had no idea it could do the things it's capable of, my goodness.  You can basically make your own music player, just the way you want.  Maybe someday, I'll spend a week and design the perfect one for myself.

What I wish for, besides better documentation, is an organized, central place to find user settings, scripts, plugins, etc.  It's a pain in the ass to find anything.  And searching their forum sucks because of the way it shows search results.

An amazingly powerful program, though.

leland

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2006, 05:37:49 PM »
Here is a link to a post at the Hydrogen Audio forum that covers the plug-ins for v0.9.x.  Also, the forums here are a very good source of information on using Foobar.

http://www.hydrogena...42730&hl=columns

Leland
 :D

JavaJones

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2006, 09:53:18 PM »
So the question then is - if you don't have some crazy audio setup or automation needs or whatnot - what is the real advantage of Foobar? Why should I use this instead of say Winamp? Sure it's "lighter", but it seems a lot like the Opera vs. Firefox thing - in order to get all the Winamp functionality I'd want out of Foobar I'd have to use a bunch of plugins anyway, so it may not be so light anymore, and certainly is more difficult to setup. Opera and Winamp both work and have tons of functionality "out of the box".

I'm sure making converts of people isn't a priority with an app like that and I'm not asking for evangelism, but I do wonder sometimes if I'm missing something good. :D

- Oshyan

Josh

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2006, 04:33:17 AM »
I've often wondered the same thing. I use ZP which is an all in one media player, which is what I need. I do not want a separate application for audio and one for video. I have no need for that type of setup.

Foobar is a nice app, but, its never been my cup of tea. I agree with you JJ, I do want to know if perhaps I am just missing something.

Lashiec

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #11 on: September 27, 2006, 09:42:11 AM »
WHOA! I planned to write a good post about what's great about foobar2000, but I'm so dense right now that I can't write anything... No, on second thought, I'm really angry, I've just received the results of the last exam I did in September and I'm really not happy with THAT results. Not to mention that the T3 used by the university (or T1, I don't know the type of connection exactly) feels like a 14,4 kbps modem. GREAT! Now I'm outrageous! I'll post something tomorrow >:(

superboyac

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #12 on: September 27, 2006, 10:12:23 AM »
So the question then is - if you don't have some crazy audio setup or automation needs or whatnot - what is the real advantage of Foobar? Why should I use this instead of say Winamp? Sure it's "lighter", but it seems a lot like the Opera vs. Firefox thing - in order to get all the Winamp functionality I'd want out of Foobar I'd have to use a bunch of plugins anyway, so it may not be so light anymore, and certainly is more difficult to setup. Opera and Winamp both work and have tons of functionality "out of the box".

I'm sure making converts of people isn't a priority with an app like that and I'm not asking for evangelism, but I do wonder sometimes if I'm missing something good. :D

- Oshyan

I'll answer this from my perspective.  I used Winamp for almost 10 years (until a couple of days ago!).  I've known about foobar for a few years, but like you, I had no real motivation togive it a good try because Winamp was pretty great.  But after seeing some screenshots of what people are doing with foobar, I just had to try it.  I don't think it's like Opera vs. Firefox, because while the plugins for foobar are important, the biggest advantage is the ability to script and essentially design your own music player.  Check out this thread to see what people have been doing with it:
http://www.hydrogena....php?showtopic=30988

I'm totally sold on foobar

f0dder

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #13 on: September 27, 2006, 04:38:25 PM »
superboyac: can you post some info on how you have configured foobar? I used to use winamp, but after realizing that I don't care about skins and don't use visualizations these days, I've switched to foobar. Default setup seems pretty okay to me, although I wouldn't mind albumart or something :)
- carpe noctem

JavaJones

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #14 on: September 27, 2006, 07:56:28 PM »
100 pages in that thread? Good god. Well, I looked through a few. Very little seemed particularly different or cool. I did like the album view in the playlist and the heirarchical media library (explorer-like). There was also mention of color coding in playlist as tracks end, for low bitrate files, etc. which seems novel but not really something I think I'd get much use out of.

My biggest question is whether you can easily save full configs. I mean let's say a "skin" or "template" or "config" consists of a layout, but the layout is dependent on several plugins I may not have. Can you easily package up all dependent files to share with others? I would imagine there's an easy way to share configs, but if it involves much more than equivalent Winamp skinning I can't say I'm inclined to fiddle with it. There just doesn't seem to be much real benefit.

Also of vital, vital importance to me: I'm sure it can read the Shoutcast directory, but does it have basically all the same online content as Winamp, like XM Radio? If not, no deal. Free streaming media rules. :D

- Oshyan

kimmchii

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #15 on: September 27, 2006, 08:18:35 PM »
dont forget the Noise Sharpening DSP plugin, more info here.

If you find a good solution and become attached to it, the solution may become your next problem.
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JavaJones

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #16 on: September 27, 2006, 09:10:34 PM »
Looks like there's a similar "Noise Sharpening" plugin for Winamp. Not sure it does the same thing quite, or is as effective, but the results sound the same as described in that thread. One of the benefits of using one of the most popular players is lots of support, of course. ;)

- Oshyan

superboyac

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #17 on: September 27, 2006, 10:57:16 PM »
superboyac: can you post some info on how you have configured foobar? I used to use winamp, but after realizing that I don't care about skins and don't use visualizations these days, I've switched to foobar. Default setup seems pretty okay to me, although I wouldn't mind albumart or something :)
I'll attach a screenshot of something I've managed to muster together in the past few days by stealing from others' configurations.  If you like it, I can send you the files to put it together, but there are a couple of minor steps involved.  Here's the screenshot:
ac-foobar.pngfoobar...honestly...WTF?!  WTF?!
There is A LOT of scripting in what is in that screenshot.  I learned just enough to tweak it a little to my tastes.

By the way, I figured out why the foobar forum is such a major pain in the ass to use:  when you search for a keyword or something, it just returns a listing of threads that have that keyword in it.  It doesn't direct you to the actual post that contains the keyword.  And a lot of the threads are several pages (some even over 100 pages), so it's next to impossible to find anything.  What a garbage forum.  I wasted a lot of time trying to find answers.

100 pages in that thread? Good god. Well, I looked through a few. Very little seemed particularly different or cool. I did like the album view in the playlist and the heirarchical media library (explorer-like). There was also mention of color coding in playlist as tracks end, for low bitrate files, etc. which seems novel but not really something I think I'd get much use out of.

My biggest question is whether you can easily save full configs. I mean let's say a "skin" or "template" or "config" consists of a layout, but the layout is dependent on several plugins I may not have. Can you easily package up all dependent files to share with others? I would imagine there's an easy way to share configs, but if it involves much more than equivalent Winamp skinning I can't say I'm inclined to fiddle with it. There just doesn't seem to be much real benefit.

Also of vital, vital importance to me: I'm sure it can read the Shoutcast directory, but does it have basically all the same online content as Winamp, like XM Radio? If not, no deal. Free streaming media rules. :D

- Oshyan
As far as saving full configs, I don't think you can do that.  However, it seems like some of the components that make up the configuration have import options that you can use to import some aspects of the configuration.  A lot of the files can be found in the forum.  Also, many people post their scripting codes for the customizations they have made, which can be cut/pasted into the appropriate areas of your own preferences.  So it's not a one step solution, but it's not that bad either.  What's worse is trying to find anything in the forums.

As for plugins, there's a foobar component that will allow you to use Winamp DSP plugins, in case there isn't the plugin available for foobar.  I don't know about streaming shoutcast, i would imagine it's available since it's such a popular thing.  I use the winamp dsp plugin to use DFX.

f0dder

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #18 on: September 28, 2006, 02:56:12 AM »
kimmchii: foo_dsp_delta doesn't work here (foobar2000 0.9.2), and then author's page doesn't work either.

The thing that irks me about foobar is that it's so... messy. All those tweaks and extra downloads from small & obscure sites, if you don't like the vanilla looks. And the very lacking documentation, so you have to resort to forum-hunting. I've become too old for that :). Luckily it does work okay out-of-the-box.

(Too bad musikCube hasn't been updated for ages, that's a nice & interesting player as well.)
- carpe noctem

kimmchii

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #19 on: September 28, 2006, 03:32:36 AM »
ok i upload it here.
i just tried it with foobar ver 0.94 in virtual pc, it worked.
(i am still using foobar 0.8.3,  :D)
If you find a good solution and become attached to it, the solution may become your next problem.
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Lashiec

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #20 on: September 28, 2006, 03:51:28 AM »
OK, so I'm much better now. Relaxed and calm. Let's post something about foobar then.

My biggest question is whether you can easily save full configs. I mean let's say a "skin" or "template" or "config" consists of a layout, but the layout is dependent on several plugins I may not have. Can you easily package up all dependent files to share with others? I would imagine there's an easy way to share configs, but if it involves much more than equivalent Winamp skinning I can't say I'm inclined to fiddle with it. There just doesn't seem to be much real benefit.

No, it's impossible. musicmusic (ColumnsUI programmer) has something like that in his ToDo List, so maybe something is possible in the future, but for now the only way of sharing a complete foobar config is sharing the .fcs file (ColumnsUI configuration) and the same foobar2000.cfg, together with the directory containing the plugins used by that particular configuration. And I've seen that several times in Hydrogen Audio...

superboyac: can you post some info on how you have configured foobar? I used to use winamp, but after realizing that I don't care about skins and don't use visualizations these days, I've switched to foobar. Default setup seems pretty okay to me, although I wouldn't mind albumart or something :)

Look on the link I provided at the beginning at the topic. It's VERY useful for those people who want to understand how foobar works.

Of course foobar2000 is a music player geared toward users with some expertise on computers and want to make an audio player to addapt to his/her needs, and not the other way around. Things were worse before 0.8 (I started there), so don't complain too much. Also, I might add, that you have not spent too much time on foobar2000 page, superboyac. In the main page you have the "Optional Components" link, which lists some useful plugins, along with another links to the most popular components. And then you have a link to the Hydrogen Audio wiki called "User Guides", which have links to Bachi-Bouzouk excellent user guide (I wish I had something like this back then) and the tremendously useful foobar2000 0.9.x Components wiki page, which lists almost all components available for it. Months ago (before 0.9.x release) there used to be a web page containing lots of ColumnsUI configurations, but unfortunately it's now closed...

... BUT two of the most popular configurations are available in Hydrogen Audio threads. First you have Navigator Suite and then Azrael

I remember that in the old days, you have to actually wander through Hydrogen Audio to find something. And the so called "official" Third-party components page contained much less components than its Japanese counterpart (pitiful). Feel free to ask anything about foobar2000, by the way.

By the way, how do you add hyperlinks to text, like f0dder did?
« Last Edit: September 28, 2006, 06:37:30 AM by Lashiec »

mitzevo

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #21 on: September 28, 2006, 04:28:02 AM »
what's a foobar? :(
The clock is running. Make the most of today. Time waits for no man. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That's why it is called the present.

kimmchii

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If you find a good solution and become attached to it, the solution may become your next problem.
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jgpaiva

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #23 on: September 28, 2006, 04:48:09 AM »
By the way, how do you add hyperlinks to text, like f0dder did?

It's quite simple, just type this:
[url=SOME TEXT HERE]http://foobar.com[/url]

Lashiec

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Re: foobar...honestly...WTF?! WTF?!
« Reply #24 on: September 28, 2006, 06:38:00 AM »
Thanks! Now it's much better