Songbird vs. iTunes: The Battle of the Music Players

Songbird is a customizable music player that has, in my opinion, many advantages over iTunes.  First and foremost, I am a fan of anything innovative and open-source (Songbird is both of these).  Here is a screenshot of my Songbird.  I want you to notice a number of features:


1. Lyrics Extension: On the left the lyrics to my currently playing Blonde Redhead’s song 23.

2. Artist Info/Reviews: Instead of having to go between the iTunes store and then back to my library, Songbird seamlessly adapts so I can read about the artists I am listening at the bottom of the browser.  Not only does it have information on the band, but it also has reviews, pictures, video, and news all in one place.  This is extremely superior to going back and forth between Safari (or Firefox) and iTunes.

3. Built in Browser: The built in browser gives you the ability to go back and forth between your library and other tabs.  Because it is a browser it uses the tabbed browsing made famous by firefox.  Thus, you can surf the net and have your library all in the same window.

4. Thousands of Add-Ons: Like it’s sister Firefox, Songbird has thousands of add-ons being developed and they are all FREE and open source.  They have hooked up with lastfm and shoutcast for radio and ratings that are really cool.  One thing they need to add on is some sort of integrated browsing with Pandora.  If anyone hears anything about this, let me know.

5. FLAC Support: MP3 support is good, but it is not all there is.  Many sites allow you to download music in FLAC format. The files are a bit larger, but they are good for audiophiles who love to have that perfect crisp sound.  It is especially good for listening to bootlegged live concerts of Dave Matthews or Pearl Jam.

All of these reasons (and hopefully more to come in the future) are why I am transferring over to Songbird with my music library.  I would really advise everyone to switch over and try it too.


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