I loathe iTunes personally. I installed it on a Windows box once because people keep raving about it. At the time I had been ripping all my music in Windows Media Player. iTunes refused to play my collection of 6,500+ songs and wanted to reencode all of those tracks. Amarok had no qualms playing the same songs.
Next, iTunes wouldn’t recognize my album artwork, but offered to download album art if I gave them my credit card number and created an iTunes account.
Then, I see the interface. Supposedly this is what Apple excels at. Their interfaces are better than anyone else’s, except it wasn’t. You have search (which is nice, but everyone has search) and then you have a massive list. Scrolling through 6,500+ songs is annoying. It takes forever. In Amarok and WMP, I can navigate quickly with a tree view. I can also use dyanmic trees.
Quite frankly, I didn’t see one single thing that iTunes did better than anyone else, and many things they did worse.
Anyway, when I started out with Suse around version 9.2 I was a rhythmbox person, I think I was using gnome too, as I had moved from Mandrake around the time of the name change and wanted to break from KDE to see what Gnome was like. I tried Banshee around the same time too, but it was terrible, in my opinion. Looking back, I only had a 6,000 song collection at the time–and it struggled with it.
By the time Suse hit 10.0 I decided to go back to KDE and I kept using rhythmbox. That is, until I tried Amarok. Best. Player. Ever. In my opinion, nothing beats it. Perhaps I’ll check some of the other alternatives soon, when I upgrade Ubuntu on my laptop (despite the gnome environment, it is using Amarok) but I doubt any of them can compare.
iTunes doesn’t run on Linux, and I only run Windows and Linux. iTunes also doesn’t run on Windows x64, so it won’t run on either of my two OS’es at the moment.
And frankly you insist that if I tried it on the native OS I’d like it better. I think you didn’t read my post. I’ve seen it on a Mac. We have plenty of Macs here where I work. (I’m a SysAdmin for a decent sized newspaper company). The Mac version still won’t play my music, still won’t recognize my album artwork, and still lacks the tree-based navigation.
The internal widgets look the same, and aside from the window deco, the app pretty much looks the same on both platforms.
You insist that I didn’t give the app a fair shot since I didn’t use a Mac, but I am forced to use and support Macs all the time. Next you personally accuse me of whining and/or acting like a child.
Personal attacks are weak sauce. Just because someone has a differing opinion that you, you shouldn’t attack the person.
Although with Banshee 1.0 this is no longer a direct comparison since Banshee has blossomed into a general “media player” while Amarok (at least the stable branch) is still strictly an audio player.
While I’m not too worried right now that Amarok has “basic” video support for music videos…I hope they don’t get bullied into investing a ton of time into video features. They’ve cracked open the door and some people will probably try to push it wide open. I’m hopeful that the Kaffeine devs will be able to come up with something exciting for KDE 4 in time (the Qt4 interface of the new VLC is a nice add, but it’s still the same basic design).
Since the bulk of my media is audio I use Amarok in KDE and Exaile in Gnome (because in all honesty it’s basically “Gnomarok”). If Banshee develops a more robust playlist management scheme like Amarok, then I’d probably use it as my primary Gnome player for all media.
No question, Amarok is still far superior. I’ve been using it on Gnome for awhile now (in both OpenSUSE and Ubuntu + Kubuntu), and the ease of use is amazing. Stuff just works. I’ve also noticed that I’ve been able to sync my iPod relatively seamlessly using Amarok, even when GTKPod was struggling with a particular model.
Banshee is moving up the ranks, but they’re not close yet.
Given the option I would always go for AmaroK.
To me it’s basically the UI that does it and AmaroK is
far ahead of Banshee, though this does get better and better
as more features are added. I like being able to customize the
UI to my liking and AmaroK has some support for this, although
I’d wanna see it open up more to this.
The ability to choose engine and to store in MySQL is other pros in my mind.
Oh, I exclusively use AmaroK with Gnome, never seen it in action
on KDE to be honest.
The combination of easytag and AmaroK is unbeatable.
Niclas Ekstedt, CNA/CNE/CNS/CLS
Systems Engineer/NSC Sysop
Telindus Sweden AB