Category Archives: Audio Tools

Tiny but Full Featured MP3 Player – STP

[Windows Only]  STP, short for “SysTrayPlay”, is an MP3 player made in Russia by Youri Strous.

This tiny music player is contained in a single executable file about 200k in size. Despite the small size, STP has everything you need to easily listen to and manage your MP3 collection. It’s designed to stay out of your way and provide music while you are busy doing other things on your PC.

Installation and first use:
This program is offered as a ZIP file collection. Since STP is a single EXE file, you can unzip and place the STP.EXE file anywhere on your hard drive. As far as I can tell it’s completely portable and you should be able to use it from a flash drive or any other media.

Once you launch it, you’ll see the STP icon in your system tray. It will save it’s own settings in an STP.INI file after it’s started.

stp_systray_icon

A right single click on the STP icon reveals all the settings, controls and options. Normal left single mouse clicks will pause and play the current song. You can assign other functions to both right and left double and triple clicks of the mouse.

stp_menu

Using the STP minibar:
Under the Windows menu, STP can be set to display a “minibar” interface that many people will recognize as common in music players. The minibar can be dragged around on the screen by grabbing the dark grey rectangle on the right end.

stp_minibar

The minibar also displays the standard Play, Pause, Stop, Forward and Backward buttons. The next “now playing” field is active and clicking on it will cause the player to jump to different portions of the song almost instantly. The next field shows the volume as a percentage. Clicking on the volume field allows you to change the volume up and down.

After the volume field, you can see that there are 5 letters displayed. Clicking on the letters “I E P T A” provides quick access to many of the often used player functions.

I – brings up up “MP3 Info” on the currently playing song where you can also edit the ID3 tags.

stp_mp3_info

E – launches the built in “Equalizer” which allows you to adjust the sound frequencies and save or load EQ settings.

stp_equalizer

P – displays a playlist which can be saved as M3U or PLS files. MP3 files can be dragged and dropped on the playlist and once there, they can be re-ordered by dragging them up or down in the list. Playlists can also be searched by typing in the “Find Track” field at the top of the playlist.

stp_playlist

T – shows the “Tracks” menus which I’d say should really be called the “Folders” because it allows you to see all the music folders that your current playlist is using.

A – shows “Album” menu with the current music folder and the songs in it.

That basically covers using the “minibar” interface. I prefer using only the systray icon along with some custom hotkeys.

Using Hotkeys instead of the minibar:
You can set your own custom hotkeys in STP by going to the Settings / Advanced menu. You’ll find lots of other goodies in this settings menu, but let’s focus on the hotkeys which can be accessed by hitting the “Hotkeys” button at the bottom.

stp_adv_setting

Almost every function of STP can be accessed by hotkeys that you can define.

stp_hotkeys

As you can see, I only use a few of the hotkeys such as Play/Pause, Prev/Next and Volume. Those alone are enough to keep me from having to click open any other menus while using STP.

STP Home page: http://stp.byteact.com/

The only other MP3 player that I like as much as STP, is Foobar. Keshav, my friend and co-author here at Techie-Buzz, has written several posts about Foobar. It’s a well supported MP3 player with plenty of skins and plugins.

Techie Buzz Verdict:

techiebuzzrecommendedsoftware1 There are very few MP3 players that are smaller than STP and I’d give it 5 points for cramming in all of it’s features in such a small and completely portable package. However, I have to take one point back because the author is no longer actively developing this application. The source code is available for this application. Does anyone need a coding project?

Techie Buzz Rating: 4/5

TunesBag: Upload Music Online and Share With Your Friends

Want to store music online and share the songs with your friends? Tunesbag is just the tool you need. It acts as an online music library and lets you store audio up to 1 GB. You can listen to the songs, share them in various social networks and see what others are listening. Cool !

To get started with Tunesbag, you need to register here. You can create a fresh Tunesbag account with your email address or choose to login using Twitter, Facebook, Google, Yahoo or Msn.

After you login, you can start uploading audio songs from your computer. Here is how the Tunesbag dashboard looks after logging in:

tunesbag-dashboard

Upload songs in your Tunesbag account: There are a lot of options to upload songs to your Tunesbag account. You can download their Adobe air app, use the browser uploader or email the songs as an attachment. You are given a private email address and sending the song as an attachment to this email address works fine. I used the browser uploader to add songs and it took only a couple of minutes to finish. While uploading a new song you can organize it into a custom playlist as well.

upload-songs-tunesbag-account

Listening to playlists: You can create playlists of songs that you have added in your TunesBag account. This helps in organizing the audio collections into selected groups. From the “Explore” tab you can see what your friends are up to, what they are listening and which artist is popular at the moment. The service also supports tagging the songs and creating sets.

tunesbag-friend-activity

Techie-Buzz Verdict

Tunesbag is very simple and minimalistic, which makes it any music lovers first choice. The service is free, and unlike other audio sharing services which let you share only a handful of songs, Tunesbag is a smart alternatve. The only downside: you can upload only mp3,m4a,wma or ogg formats.

Techie-Buzz rating: 4/5(very good).

Search And Download Over 15 Million Songs With Nexus Radio

You may have used thousands of programs to listen songs online, but today I’m going to introduce an exceptional freeware that will fulfill all your music needs.  Nexus Radio is an excellent all-in-one application that will help you to search and download over 15 million songs directly into your PC.

You can even listen and record more than 10,000 radio stations free of charge. You can play downloaded songs directly within Nexus Radio or transfer songs to your iPod/iPhone or any other multimedia device effortlessly.

Nexus Radio

You can easily create custom ringtones using the built in music trimmer. You can even use the Nexus Radio ID3 tag editor to tag your music files.

Features

  • Over 15 million songs.
  • 10,000+ radio stations.
  • 38 music genres.
  • Full featured media player.
  • Audio editor.
  • One click recording.
  • Easy to use TiVo style recording.
  • Recording filters.
  • iPod & iPhone compatible.
  • File support: AAC, MP4, MP3, MP2, MP1, OGG, WAV & WMA.
  • Dynamic stream recorder with auto file naming features.
  • Automatic ID3 v1/v2 tag support.
  • ID3 v1/v2 tag editor.
  • 32 Bit Digital effects.
  • 5.1 Surround Sound.

Nexus Radio 2

Nexus Radio works on Windows 2000, 2003, XP and Vista. It requires 128MB RAM and 12MB free hard disk space.

[ Download Nexus Radio ]

Manage Your Extensive Music Collections With Music Bee

If you are looking for an application geared toward managing extensive music collections, easy to use and with a comprehensive feature set, then your search is over. MusicBee is an easy to use program that can easily organize, find and play music files on your computer, on portable devices and on the web.

MusicBee

MusicBee plays MP3, FLAC, Vorbis, WMA files. It can even play and Sync iPods and other MP3 players. MusicBee can also edit the tags of all your music files. MusicBee has an excellent feature “Auto-DJ” which can create a playlist for you and discover new music tracks from the web.

Features

  • Organize music files and edit tags in your library with a powerful and easy to use interface.
  • Have new music files automatically added to your library from monitored folders, with the option to tag the files from an Inbox beforehand.
  • Securely rip CD tracks as individual files or as a single album with embedded cuesheet, and with AccurateRip.com validation.
  • Automatically look up Album Art, Lyrics and tag other metadata from the web. Have a track identifed using its digital sound signature.
  • Play MP3, FLAC, Vorbis, WMA files and optionally have tracks scrobbled to Last.fm. Play the web – playlists are created from MP3 blogs you visit.
  • Play and Sync iPods and MP3 players, converting and levelling tracks on-the-fly.
  • Create dynamic playlists based on your own rules.
  • Have the Auto-DJ create a playlist for you and discover new music tracks from the web or old ones from your collection you have forgotten about!

[ Download MusicBee ]

Free MP3 Splitter/Cutter

Last week we told you about two useful tools that allow you to reduce the size of MP3 files by lowering bitrates and adding album art to MP3 files, now both these tools are really useful for managing your digital album, but there are times when you just want to store a small part of the MP3 file instead of storing the entire MP3.

In such cases a software called MP3 Cutter will come in pretty handy. MP3 Cutter allows you to split MP3 files, you can easily cut or trim a part of the MP3 and then save it as a entire new file.

free_mp3_splitter

MP3 Cutter also features in embedded audio player which allows you to select segments that you should be sliced, the good part about this is that it slices MP3 without reducing the quality.

To split a MP3 select the section where you want to start to cut from and mark then select the end point, once you have marked the selection you will see the time in the actions section, click on the cut button to slice the MP3 and store it as a new MP3 file.

Download MP3 Cutter

Smart Playlist Generator For Linux

Surprise yourself with a list of songs from your favorite genre and those that match in frequency. GJay is a smart playlist creator, which will search your collection of songs, gather information about each song, using   – the frequency ‘fingerprint’ methodology and beats per minute, and create a smart playlist of songs that match in frequency and beats.

You can describe and rank your music and assign each song a color. GJay then builds a playlist based on the characteristics you’ve set for each song. You also have option to set the relative importance of various features between songs. GJay will match all the features and build a playlist of songs matching your highest priority.

GJay is still emerging, so do not expect something extraordinary, but it does manage the job pretty efficiently.

gjay

To create a playlist:

> Create a list and copy all the songs into it.

> If you’ve set rules then songs below the set rating will be cut-off

> Choose the starting song randomly, either by user or by color.

Follow the instructions step by step as mentioned on GJay’s site :

  • (*) Pick a random subset of the working list. The random subset’s size varies by the user’s randomness parameter; the more random the playlist, the fewer songs in this subset.
  • Sort this subset with a ranking algorithm. The most appropriate song to go next in the list will be first in the list. Each factor is weighted by its user-defined importance. If a factor is marked as maintain, we calculate the difference between a given song and the first song in the playlist; otherwise, the most recently added song to the playlist is used for comparison.
  • Repeat (*) until the playlist is done

[ Download GJay ]

Free Sound Recorder

Have you ever wanted to record your own voice or create a podcast and share it with others? If you do, Free Sound Recorder could be the tool you should be using.

Free Sound Recorder does exactly as it sounds, it is an easy-to-use FREE software program that lets you record any sounds from your sound card and save the recording directly into MP3, WMA or WAV files.

Continue reading Free Sound Recorder

Free CD To MP3 Converter [CD Ripper]

Usually audio CDs cannot be directly copied and people require a converter to save the files in a playable format like MP3.

Free CD to MP3 Converter is an easy-to-use free CD ripper software that allows you to extract audio files from a CD and convert them to MP3, Wav, Ogg or Wma format. It can automatically retrieve title information from the CDDB database, normalize the output files and supports additional LAME options.

Continue reading Free CD To MP3 Converter [CD Ripper]

Access Pandora Music From Your Desktop With OpenPandora

Pandora provides a great way for people to listen to music and discover new artists and albums in the process. Pandora does provide user with a option to listen to music on their desktop through a application, but I came across another interesting application called OpenPandora which has more features than the default application provided.

OpenPandora is an open source freeware windows desktop application that exposes Pandora music discovery service and allows you to play music from your desktop.

Continue reading Access Pandora Music From Your Desktop With OpenPandora

Easily Rename MP3 Files With Its ID3 Tags

You may have MP3 files named as track1.mp3, track2.mp3 and so on, these filenames do not really tell you which song it actually is, who the artist is and so on. The best way to name mp3 files has been artist name song name.mp3. If you pretty large collection of MP3 files with no proper naming convention, it becomes hard to rename files, because you have to play the files before you can even realize which song it is.

MP3 Renaming is a handy and free utility that will allow you to rename MP3 files using the ID3 tags it carry. Just open the files or folders you want to rename and let MP3 Renaming do the job of renaming it with the correct name.

Continue reading Easily Rename MP3 Files With Its ID3 Tags