foobar2000 is a free music player for Windows. It features multiple playlists, streaming, ReplayGain support, extensive plug-ins support and more.
Supported through plug-ins:
- TTA, FLAC, Monkey's Audio, WavPack, Speex, Mod, SPC, TFMX, Shorten, OptimFROG, LPAC, WMA, AC3, PSF, NSF, XID, XA, Matroska
In addition, foobar2000 can also play music directly from compressed RAR, ZIP and 7-ZIP archives without requiring the user to extract the files prior to playing.
By default foobar2000 uses the standard interface, foo_ui_standard. This interface is based around a tabbed list of playlists. Playlists are then formatted according to the title formatting strings entered by the user. These allow access to tag data, as well as information about the state of the program in the playlist display.
foo_ui_columns is an extension of the ideas used in the standard interface. It takes the open area of the playlist and divides it into one or more columns that have individual formatting strings. Recent versions of Columns UI have also added support for UI Extension panels which appear in Columns UI's sidebar. To date panels for viewing the database, track info, album art, playback buttons, volumebars and visualizations have all been created.
Because of the useful extensions to the Standard UI, Columns UI is rapidly becoming popular and continues to be under rapid development.
TAGZ is the code used to format the way information is displayed. Thorough documentation on various TAGZ fields and functions is laid out in titleformat_help.html, which can be found in your foobar2000 directory.
Always remember that the best way to become comfortable with foobar is to read the forums regularly and to play around with foobar itself. Download some configs (found at the "must-know sites" link below), study how they do what they do, change them around to see how you affect things, explore the preferences window, see what happens when you check/uncheck things if you can't figure out what they mean, etc. etc. I will discuss some basics, but 90% of what you learn will come from the forums and experimentation.
Your first stop will be these two sites; bookmark them now:
You should also bookmark and familiarize yourself thoroughly with titleformat_help.html in your foobar directory. This contains all the TAGZ code you need to know to write your own formatting strings. It will look very strange at first, but once you see some TAGZ strings "in action" it will begin to make sense.
Any question you have as a beginner has probably already been asked and answered in the forums a half dozen times. Please search the forums thoroughly for an answer before posting your question.
Using Columns UI
It is best to start with Columns UI: the TAGZ formatting needed is very basic and the panel plug-ins will make foobar much more user-friendly, resembling mp3 players you're more accustomed to.
Bookmark and thoroughly read these sites before using Columns UI:
- the Columns UI thread: Very large, but the first post contains links to important related sites
- Columns UI FAQ: A short FAQ, including installation instructions
- Columns UI documentation: it is crucial that you read this
Installing panel extensions (such as albumart and track info is simple; just copy the .dll into your foobar2000\components folder. To enable these panels, first you must enable Columns UI's sidebar. Check both "Enable sidebar" and "Show sidebar" in the "Columns UI" subgroup of the "Components" menu. Track info is highly recommended, as it is capable of displaying in real-time what TAGZ strings will produce. While you are learning to use TAGZ code, this will make a handy "scratch pad."
No known plans exists to port it to other platforms, but attempts have been made, with varying degrees of success, to run foobar2000 on x86 Linux systems by using Wine.