is there a best music player on the computer?

I recently bought an HRT MusicStreamer II and have listened to internet radio lately but sometimes the stations have their own player that they prombt you to use but I have had no luck with. For example: KUSF does not work for me, they offer a choice of Flash 2.0 Flash 3.0 and Windows Media Player. When I select one of these in the pop up window it does not work.

What is the best music player for my computer (Windows XP pack 3)?

Is there a way to select one player to use with everything?

What is the best choice for this?

I presume the individual website are to blame in some instances, however, I need a plan of attack.

any help appreciated.



Go to the listen tab(upper left), Click Setup, Click listen settings, pick advance settings, click windows media player. enjoy!
I do not think Windows Media Player is a good sounding player at all. It may be your best bet for internet radio, I'm not sure on that one as I don't listen to internet radio. However Media Monkey, J River, and Foo Bar are three good ones that will sound much much better for playing your music files.
thanks guys,

I do not have any music files on my computer yet but I do enjoy the radio.

Tom when you say to go to the listen tab do you mean listen settings? there is nothing that just says listen but listen settings asks for my email etc.

I am looking for an answer to all my internet radio listening and what player to use.



I am fairly new to computer audio, and recently have tried most all of them. JRiver is by far the best. I mean just waaay better than the rest. It just has no real competition.
thanks Timtim do you listen to internet radio with JRiver?

I will look into it.
Apple owners would say Pure Music. Having used Foobar and Exact Copy on Windows XP, I would say the Mac is much better and more reliable.
I guess I should have mentioned for the PC (Windows XP)
Hi Phil, I am in the same position as you. I recently started listening to the radio over the internet and was having dropouts with the station streams and a friend of mine turned me on to Winamp. It is a dedicated radio station player and sounds much better than going through the stations and does not drop out as much. Download the player at Way better than WMP. The only problem is that it doesn't pick up all the stations. It does have I believe a couple of hundred though. Hope this helps.
JRiver is by far the best. I mean just waaay better than the rest. It just has no real competition.

Ditto! Amazing stuff JRiver is!

Alex Peychev
Alex, I would take exception to this statement about JRiver.

Alex, I would take exception to this statement about JRiver.

Sure, but have you auditioned JRiver on a newer energy-efficient laptop with Core i3 or i5 processor and Windows 7, 64bit? If you did, what were the settings?

Alex Peychev
Hello Alex,

Is JRivers, on your opinion, better then MediaMonkey? If so in what areas, particualrly sound quality (WAV/FLAC)?.

Thank you,

Hello Simon,

Is JRivers, on your opinion, better then MediaMonkey?


If so in what areas, particularly sound quality (WAV/FLAC)?.

Together with ASIO4ALL, JRiver is the only computer based playback I've heard to come so close to the upgraded Esoteric VRDS transport inside my NWO-M.

Alex Peychev
Aplhifi, I heard my Mac OS 10.6 with an SSD playing PM 1.72 and also Audirvana and the Weiss 202 connected with FW playing side by side with the JRivers on a new PC USB connected to a dac, that I'm afraid I don't recall.

It is interesting how divided this computer server effort has become. I had a PC server once, but doubt I would ever really consider going back to Micro Soft.
I have not tried JRiver in a long time. I heard the current version is significantly better than previous versions I tried about 2 years ago by quite a bit.

Over the past 2 years, I have been using XXHighend. All I can say is that when I started using XXHighend, it was significantly better than foobar, mediamonkey, Jriver at that time. Since then, it only got better and better. I don't know if Jriver has caught up with it or not. The only weak part of XXHighend is the interface is not nearly as nice as mediamonkey or Jriver and I feel that to get the most of it, low power PC/laptop is not going to work. You really need lots of RAM and seems to sound best at this time with Win7 with service pack 1 (not official release yet but you can get them).
I forgot to add that XXHighend seems to be the only PC program so far that I find to rival Mac Pure Music/Amarra but then again, I have not heard the current version of Jriver.
I have tried Winamp, Real, WMP and Media Monkey. The free versions are all compromised in some way and the sound of none were that good. I recently discovered J River Media Jukebox (the free version) and it's excellent. The view and search elements are second to none and unlike many of the free media players, full boolean commands are standard. Unlike the others you can manage the sound to a high degree and it sounds vastly superior in tonal quality. They have a good support forum which is manned permanently by a Beta team as well as admin presence. They do favour their full price player a little more (Media Center)but that's to be expected.
What ever I am using at the moment! Which happens to be JRivers.

I'm curious as to what settings you use with J River. I use a Windows 7 64 bit laptop, with ASIO4ALL installed (what ASIObuffer do you use?).

I've been using XXhighend for a while now and must say that it sounds very good. I started with playing around with J River today and compared them one on one. And XX still has the slight edge.. The difference is smaller than I thought it would be though. Maybe I'm using the wrong settings? Somewhere I hope that J River will be better because of the user friendliness. At least my wife can put on some music when I'm not home!!!

I recently loaded XXHIGHEND on a laptop and was very impressed with what I heard.
I am comparing it with Amarra, Pure Music, MediaMonkey and 1 or 2 other non-contenders.
XXHIGHEND seems to have better dynamic effect on my music, but has a very awkward interface. I like MediaMonkey for its interface more than the rest. It also finds all of you music during the initial installation.
I also enjoy SharkGroove, Pandora and Mog for music streaming.
Hope this helps.
There is no definitive "best" of anything. There are way too many variables involved. The "best" you can hope for is to find something that works well in your system. You can then say it's the "best" for you until you find something you think is better !!!!
Jplay appears to be the game changer for PC's.
Jplay is evidently the best currently available, but I dont believe it works on XP. I would recommend JRiver with Kernel Streaming enabled.

you can try something free first if you want, Foobar2000 with the KS plug-in:

Steve N.
Empirical Audio
Audioengr, will you please explain why you say this. Is it limited to Windows?

JPlay is limited to Vista on up to the current. In Hibernation mode, it truly embarrasses all of the other software I have here, including JRiver. It is the difference between a nice, detailed system....and the event playing out within the walls of your listening room.

Not having Apple in-house, I have not tried Amarra and the like.
For windows Jplay is a no brainer In my view its better than xxhighend whn played in full hibernation mode
You can listen to trail version but it will cut out every few mins for free but once you hear the difference to what it can do then no go going back to JRiver
Using in full hibernation mode you will have no control over the rest of your computer it will be playing directly on the HD so it is not for everybody but the performance it offers is worth it imho
Jplay was desigbed to work with Vista and Windws7 It strips out all other functions on your computer so music is getting read direct from memory without other processing getting in the way this makes a huge difference as I said full hibernation will not be for everyone as when in use you cannot use your computer for other funtions but this makes a huge difference
Ditto! JPlay is the new reference when it comes to computer playback, IMHO!

About the Apple question; I experimented with MacMini using Pure Music and Decibel (did not try Amarra), and also tried the same with the latest MacBook Pro (Core i7). None sounded as good as if running Windows 7 (x64), JRiver MC and ASIO4ALL. But now with JPlay and JRiver MC17 is a totally new level of performance.

The level of naturalness and refinement combined with extreme detail and 3D soundstage is truly amazing! Congratulations to the JPlay team!

Best wishes,
Alex Peychev
I second "JPlay" for Windows too!

For Mac I feel that Amarra still the best but with high costs. Otherwise Audirvana is now the best albeit not quite stable yet. PureMusic and Fidelia seems to be almost equal.
I will add on to the praise of Jplay. Was using J River and decided to try Jplay on a trial basis - especially since it integrates nicely into J-River as a plugin. I did not need more than a few songs to realize that JPlay was the better player in my system. Difference was not subtle.

It's not cheap (99 Euros or about $137 at time of purchase with exchange rate) but considering what people pay for cables and other tweaks it's a no brainer if you really want to optimize your digital experience on the PC. Between J River and JPlay it will set you back just under $200.

Only potential downside is that the interface is very basic. Don't expect lots of extras. The programming time and effort clearly went into optimizing the sound rather than convenient features. Hopefully, we will get some of these in later updates (which are free for life).
ok, jPlay it is.
I'll buy a HP laptop with win7/64-bit, i5 2.4GHz processor, 80GB SSD, 750GB hard drive, and 6GB DDR3.

How best to optimize jPlay? Upgrade RAM to 16GB? Do I store CDs and hi-rez files on the HD or SSD?? Or is the SSD better served as the buffer? Which USB port: Super Speed 3.0? Ideas?

Sorry, just a newbie here looking for help or a good link!
Can J Play run under Microsoft HomeServer OS? If not, what recommendation for that OS? It is a dedicated music server so I don't imagine that something that runs in "hibernation mode" would be a problem. Please be gentle on the geek-talk. My IT consultant (read my son) is away at law school ;-)
Does Photoshop crop a photo better than Paint Shop Pro?
Does Nero burn a CD better than Burrrn?
I've used WMP, VLC, Foobar, MediaMonkey and others, and from my experience no media player sounds better (or worse) than any other media player. Better features...yes. Better
Danoroo - I respectfully disagree. Have you tried Jplayer? I'd suggest those that are skeptical download the free trial software and judge based on your own ears. If you don't think it improves the sound in your system - don't buy the full program. No harm, no foul.

What is different about JPlay's design is that the program is designed to minimize your computer's hardware and software interruptions when using the music player.

The nice thing about evaluating music players is that all of us can do it via free trial software. Over the last few days I compared players from mediamonkey,JRiver and JPlay. I had no vested interest in the outcome and clearly preferred JPlay.
I have had the trial version of JPlay downloaded for a couple of weeks. I use a Win 7 64 bit, 6gb ram, I run foobar and Jplay. Before JPlay, I had my Laptop as optimized as I could, shutting down all non pertinent software. At first I had a problem with it running slow and distorted most of the time. I was outputting Wasapi, once I switched to Kernal streaming, most problems ended. When I play Hi Res files, if the buffer is set too low, it will still sound distorted, but I can usually just up the buffer and it plays fine. If I understand JPlay, It pulls the files out of foobar, Jriver, etc and in hybernation mode, bypasses all functions and runs completely off of ram. I still get very good performance out of Hybernation mode, but you can hear the difference going to Hybernation.
I would relate the sound quality difference of using a good 14 gauge copper lamp cord as speaker cable to upgrading to a top quality cable. Tighter, more focused, more detail... you got it.
JPLAY for me too,

I don't have any experience on apple side, but if you're running pc with vista or 7, you have to try jplay.

The sound is better in windows 8 actually...