What is the best sound player? Winamp? Nero? RP?

A simple question:

What application renders the best, clearest sound from all of those many out there:

Example: Real Player, Winamp, Nero, Creative, Windows Media........

I have used all of them and notice slight differences but I dont know much about them.


I just bought a 24 bit soundcard (creative audigy 2 ZS)  and I need a really good player.  
The creative  Mediasourse player that came with it sounds OK, but I want to know the best player.... for Audio CD's Mp3s, etc.
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pdorileyAsked:
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patrvicConnect With a Mentor Commented:
get winamp 5.x. its the best. realplayer doesnt give much bass. windows media player need a lot of tweaking to make the lyrics "audible".

get winamp from the winamp site. enable equilizer and seletc pop from the preset menu. its the best for all. if u can get hold of extra plugins ( u can get demo versions at the winamp site)..enable surroud sound...its the best. occupies 1/10th the memory mplayer9 does...
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adecoldCommented:
I don't really think one player plays better sound that the other, it just depends on your preference...
The slight differences you heard may be different equlizer settings.

Some media players have more features than the other, and some just take up too much memory... again it all depends on your personal preference.... I go with windows media player so i don't have worry about conflits between many players

Adecold
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pdorileyAuthor Commented:
What about advanced on board mixers that have built in amps.  i.e. Sound Forge, Adobe Audition, Cool Edit, im looking for good amps, mixers. Winamp 5.05 released 8/26/04?

Did tomshardware or any other site test common players

If anybody can give me some technical details into how these programs  are all alike, or how they're different.  Or why 1 might be the better sounding than the rest (espec. w/ my new 24bit THX soundcard and THX speakers).

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adecoldCommented:
I think the only way to reduce an mp3 file size is to reduce the bitrate and you a codec that uses more compression like mp3pro claims too,,,
so i think what you should be looking for is a batch program that recodes... i think nero recode does that.

Adecold
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pdorileyAuthor Commented:



                                                  Who's asking how to reduce an mp3 file size ?


My question is does anyone know areally good player that plays CD's/tapes/onboard sound/mp3 with good output/mixing - better than the rest - with some technical proofs.    I think some sort of accoustic testing would be most convincing.

Then , Regarding MP3encoding:
128+  bit is good, 64 is sort of Ok 32 bit sounds like a robot in a tin can and 16 bit sounds like an electronic disaster, 8 bit - forget it.  There are programs that will compress to reduce the bitrate, but to improve an mp3 files sound quality, you are pretty much limited to .

Remix the file you already have - This includes equalizers, pop / hiss eliminators, and more advanced mixers/enhancers - these are good in general but sometimes over-mixing makes the sound "metallic" and "Fake"

Re-record the mp3 from better original source (like wave/good line in)  -into a higher MP3 bitrate or remixed into the same or better bitrate.


I just want a really good player that plays CD's/tapes/onboard sound/mp3 with good output/mixing that is known to be better than the rest... I'll even make WMP my default if someone can prove that it has the best sound.      


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adecoldCommented:
OOooppps...
sorry i was pasting a comment in the wrong question.....
(now how did that happen?)

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pdorileyAuthor Commented:
Sokay
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patrvicCommented:
winamp rules over all...anywez like u said its best to chek out yourself...good luck and happy listening
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crissandCommented:
http://www.musicmatch.com/

Quote:  Winner of PC Magazine Editors' Choice Award for Best Music Player
      - five times in a row!
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xooroxCommented:
For the most part the "major players" will sound the same if they are playing the same material - if you have their EQ sections turned off.

What makes more of a difference is what you are listening to.  One of the nice things about Winamp is that it supports Ogg Vorbis audio file compression (http://vorbis.com/) - which some people prefer the results over mp3 for the same file size.

If you are recording things into the computer from an analogue source such as tape, the quality is going to vary depending on what you use to convert to digital.

To be honest you'll find that the results are very subjective however much technical terminology is used to promote a player/compression system and the the results are going to depend on what you're listening through.

Personally I run a home studio and use a high-spec studio amp (on the hardware side) and nearfield monitors.  For this reason I prefer Ogg Vorbis for storing music in digital format on computer over mp3, the top end suffers less - and for listening I use winamp, but this is as much for ease of use as for preferring the "sound".  My setup isn't designed to make the music sound as "nice" as possible but to hear exactly what is going on in a mix - and also for listening I like to hear as much as possible so all EQ in winamp is turned off.

You will find almost certainly that the "best player" will differ from setup to setup depending entirely on how the EQ is setup - so unless you know what you are doing with EQ settings it will be which player has the best presets.
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pdorileyAuthor Commented:
Winamps lookin the best to me right now!  



Any final comments.... anyone?
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patrvicCommented:
good choice :)
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pdorileyAuthor Commented:
I've been using Winamp ever since its earliest times, it is the best media player.   I might even $$ pay for the upgrade to be able to burn mp3's with it!!


Winamp reigns over all media players.
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