You might not know it, but if you’ve been using iTunes for the PC you have been missing out. The Mac crowd has been enjoying audio of a much higher quality as it uses a different back-end to process the audio.
We’re stuck with the crappy quicktime audio filters on PC. Quicktime is a resource hog and it also sounds like mud when compared to other programs.Allow me to introduce Foobar 2000. It is still in beta but it is extremely usable and it offers the best audio playback I have heard on a PC. The equalizer is infinitely better and the sound quality is amazing.
I downloaded it then cranked up some In Flames. “Oh my God!” The wife came running around the corner to ask if everything was alright. “Yes it’s alright. This sounds amazing!”
For the next couple hours I switched back and forth between iTunes and Foobar 2000; testing the same songs. As I did, iTunes sounded more and more like mud.
I can really hear each individual instrument with Foobar. The vocals are clean and full, I found them easier to understand. I have to listen to my entire music collection over again as I now feel that I have never properly listened to it.
So you’re probably saying, “Shut up! I love iTunes.” Well, I love it too. There is no better way to organize your files but if you want the best audio you have to have Foobar.
Now suppose you want the best of both worlds. You want to organize with iTunes but you want to use Foobar for playback. You can.
Download a tool called Multi-Plugin. This allows you to skin iTunes plus it allows you to use the Foobar pass-though! When this option is selected you can use iTunes to organize your music and the Foobar sound engine is used. This will also free up a lot of system resourses since you are not using that hog quicktime to play audio! If you are still using an older version of iTunes, DON’T UPGRADE! Multi-Plugin will not work with the latest version of iTunes. If you already upgraded don’t worry. I’m sure there will be an update soon.
Here is what you need to make this happen:
If you decide to try out Foobar you might notice that it looks a little drab. It’s up to you to apply the plugins and skins that best suit you. If I can find the time I’ll make a video to demonstrate the flexibility of Foobar and I will be blogging about it, so check back!