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Rhythmbox 3.0 is eating the tapes!

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It’s been quite some time now since the Rhythmbox developers tried to drive the popular music playing and managing application to a complete Gnome coherent version 3.0, meeting goals set by the desktop environment like the port to Python 3 and the creation of a Gmenu.

The third major release codenamed “I Eat Tapes” is finally here and the efforts have come to the fruition. Rhythmbox is finally working well under Gnome, is much more stable that it used to be (in my experience) and is looking more modern than ever.


The new playback controls look much better

Rhythmbox 3.0 changes

There are many changes and improvements on this release that concern various different aspects of the application. The most important is the feeling that it just works better generally (crashes a lot less). Here is the list of all major changes and the literally tons of fixed bugs:

Main changes:

  • Plugins now use Python 3
  • New task progress display below the track list (used for various things including track transfers and import jobs)
  • Support for composer tags
  • Restyled playback controls
  • Restyled source list using symbolic icons
  • Better introspection of everything
  • Separate CBR and VBR encoding styles with different sets of exposed properties
  • Playlist settings (browser visibility etc.) saved in playlists.xml
  • Better use of RTL icons where appropriate

Bugs fixed:

(#127939) – support for composer/Music Director id3 tag in rhythmbox and the database
(#516846) – Use short labels in toolbar
(#652892) – Browser visibility is forgotten on program restart
(#672044) – Man page for rhythmbox-client should be updated
(#675145) – Provide an app menu
(#677645) – Improve custom recording settings
(#697533) – Several keyboard shortcuts don’t work in 2.99
(#697915) – XI_BadDevice errors
(#697959) – Incorrect time shows briefly when song changes
(#698043) – fix im-status plugin load
(#698429) – click album or artist list -> window size returns
(#698460) – macros/ is kinda missing
(#698810) – IM status plugin doesn’t work
(#698979) – ReplayGain plugin cannot load
(#700017) – man: Remove –quit option
(#700177) – rhythmbox fails to build introspection with Gtk 3.9
(#700401) – replaygain crashes Rhythmbox on second play
(#700424) – Impossible to unmaximize the main window by double clicking on the title bar
(#700590) – rb-audiocd-source.c:1009: not doing musicbrainz lookup as we don’t have a disc id
(#701032) – No external plugins menu items visible in the Play Queue popup
(#701194) – The library import tab does not update the available tracks
(#701307) – No longer able to examine and respond to changes in RhythmDB
(#702679) – exception hit when attempting to read an entry-view BPM column
(#702683) – Ctrl+Space no longer pauses/plays current song
(#703624) – “Add to playlist >” contextual menu item is disabled when inside a dynamic playlist
(#703626) – “Browse” togglebutton/pushbutton is initially inconsistent
(#703627) – Small UI nitpicks in 2.99.x: cut off inline toolbar, redundant separator widget
(#703798) – App is reading wrong ID3 tag used to show Year
(#705307) – Date tag not detected properly on FLAC files (and possibly others)
(#705427) – Set button arrow icons according to locale’s text direction
(#705626) – Shortcuts missing
(#706760) – Set button arrow icons according to locale’s text direction
(#707082) – IM status does nothing
(#707184) – Song comments disappear after closing Rhythmbox
(#707360) – Desktop file categories are wrong

Gnome Music

You may be asking yourself what the use for Rhythmbox will be from now on that Gnome Music will unify the awesomeness of our favorite DE with our favorite songs and artists. The answer is pretty simple really as Rhythmbox will stay as a good choice for those who want to do things the “classic” way, and it is very good that the application is getting much improved and modernized instead of just being thrown it out of the window.

Gnome Music is under heavy development anyway and has neither the functionality nor the maturity of Rhythmbox currently, but we will be happy to test it on Gnome 3.10. Latest unstable release was the 3.9.91 that brought the following on the table:

Major changes:

  • All songs will now be loaded in Songs view after switching to it for the first time
  • First song in Songs view will play if Play is executed in MPRIS and there is no current playlist
  • The URIs are now discovered asynchronously, to make loading songs faster
  • An error icon will now show up when the file is deleted
  • The message when no music files are found is now more verbose

Bugs fixed:

(#700776) – Licensing problems
(#705855) – Crash when attempting to get properties over DBus
(#706019) – Don’t use the discoverer if we don’t care of the results
(#706294) – Duration in Albums view increases every time an album is se…
(#706353) – About box changes size when license button is toggled on, l…
(#706457) – Invalid copyright headers
(#706533) – More explanation when Music says “No Music Found”
(#706800) – Cancel button in toolbar shouldn’t be emphasized
(#706947) – Can’t shuffle my entire library without clicking “load more…

  Get Rhythmbox 3.0   Gnome Music

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  • Dread Knight

    Quite nice :)

  • Henrique Junior

    Glad to read this.

  • Uri Adonay Herrera

    I hope they change the volume icon too so it’s a symbolic icon and not that.. thing, the controls already look nice but that right there is killing it.

    • 2eurocents

      “That thing,” indeed.

    • Goddard

      Another thing that kind of annoys me about these music players is the
      fact they have volumn controls. You guys do realize I have 3 damn
      volumn controls now and it isn’t like they are fine grained controls
      like bass and trebble. I have volumn controls on my Speakers, my
      operating system gives me volumn controls in my DE and now my music
      player gives me volumn controls. How many volumn controls do I need?

      • Uri Adonay Herrera

        Not enough it seems, but yes there’s a volume control in your keyboard to control the volume on your environment to control the volume in your audio application.. which has a volume control.

        If there’s a need for individual volume settings the Audio or Sound section in Settings already does that, why adding that same thing to the software itself?.

        Gotta love redundancy.

      • Rowan Lewis

        If you removed it, imagine the whinging from Gnome haters, it’d be absolutely endless.

        “No volume for you!” ~Hitler

        • Goddard

          Yeah, but seriously we don’t need application level control on a music application unless it is more detailed then the default DE so if you are using Gnome Shell, Unity, or KDE you really have no reason to have a volumn control on the music app. All of these DE’s put the volumn control right in their version of the system tray. It should at the very least by a display option that is turned off by default when installing the application in Gnome Shell.

        • bwat47

          Yeah its ridiculous how much hate there is anytime gnome makes any kind of change to a feature, good or bad. I love gnome-shell, IMO gnome-shell and elementary’s pantheon are the only two properly polished and clean modern DE’s available. I much prefer a simple clean and polished DE like gnome, to something convoluted and hugely feature-bloated like KDE.

  • Goddard

    That is cool, but I am curious why gnome has a music player that is separate from the video player and both of them are just ok and not great. It looks good except for the giant window title bar that serves no purpose. Sorry I am not trying to rag on anyone I just expect the best from the Linux community.

    • Joshua Strobl

      The Gnome Foundation likes creating a bunch of useless crap (like Maps) and their own Music app rather leveraging and helping support third-party devs like the Rhythmbox team.

      • Rowan Lewis

        Oh fuck off. Music is a very different app to Rhythmbox and it’s not as though the effort that’s gone it to it could’ve been used elsewhere.

    • Guest

      I’ve always liked rhtyhmbox, its been a reliable application I prefer it over other applications I’ve used for a music player.

      totem makes me rage though, its had an extremely annoying bug for a very long time where the fullscreen controls don’t show up when you move the mouse. I can reproduce it on two laptops that have totally different touchpads on many different distros and different versions of totem 3.x (a system76 laptop with a standard synaptics touchpad, and an asus with an elantech touchpad, and my desktop pc with a roccat mouse). This is a pretty wide range of effected hardware, I don’t understand how a bug like that isn’t high priority. They decided to wait until they re-write its controls in clutter to fix it, but its been taking FOREVER /rant.

      If it wasn’t for that major issue I’d happily use totem. I’m hoping gnome 3.10 finally has the new clutter based totem controls…

      • Algas Rados

        You should try on a different distro. :) I don’t have the problem on OpenSUSE, but I know it from my girlfriend’s Ubuntu laptop.

        • bwat47

          He’s talking about a known upstream bug, it is not ubuntu-specific. I see this issue on my arch linux install using the latest totem 3.8, and on fedora 17/18/19… This is the only reason I use smplayer instead of totem.

    • Algas Rados

      Why not? Music can be listened to in the background & individual tracks are short (1–10 minutes); videos usually demand full attention for a longer time (10–180 minutes). Those are very different scenarios and mixing the one with the other doesn’t make that much sense to me. Granted, music videos are somewhat of a fringe case, and it would make sense to integrate them into the music player.

      Anyway, try Banshee if you can stand it – it does both.

      • Goddard

        I personally use Miro because it is actual a media player. Rythmbox is stable and that is exactly the reason I think it would make a good video player as well and then just remove totem all together. It manages podcasts pretty well, but the downside is you can’t have video podcasts. It is a damn good program that needs just a little more features.

        • Rowan Lewis

          If it’s going to become a Video player than I’d want it to let me browse my TV shows and Movies in some organised manner. Personally I don’t see that happening. I also don’t think the interface suites it, video playback demands a minimal UI.

  • Alaa Hossam

    And still no built-in equalizer ?

    • Helmuth Saatkamp

      That’s the only thing that I miss, but the developers think this is not an important feature. :(

    • CameronN

      Use Noise!

    • SeeM

      yum list *rhythmbox*
      rhythmbox.i686 2.99.1-1.fc19 @anaconda
      gnome-do-plugins-rhythmbox.i686 0.8.4-13.fc19 fedora
      pidgin-rhythmbox.i686 2.0-10.fc19 fedora
      rhythmbox-devel.i686 2.99.1-1.fc19 fedora
      rhythmbox-equalizer.i686 1.4-5.fc19 fedora
      rhythmbox-lirc.i686 2.99.1-1.fc19 fedora

      How could you miss that? And pulseaudio-equalizer also works really well.

  • Guest

    Another thing that kind of annoys me about these music players is the fact they have volumn controls. You guys do realize I have 3 damn volumn controls now and it isn’t like they are fine grained controls like bass and trebble. I have volumn controls on my Speakers, my operating system gives me volumn controls in my DE and now my music player gives me volumn controls. How many volumn controls do I need?

  • Michael Mistretta

    Can this be installed on Ubuntu 13.04? Anyone know if there are any dependency problems?

    • Michael Mistretta

      Also wondering if this would work with Gnome Shell 3.6 : >

  • JaSauders

    Perhaps I’ll give this another shot. The last half dozen times I used Rhythmbox it would segfault on me before I could get through a single song. :(

    • Márcio Sousa Rocha

      Rhythmbox had bad times after change gtk2 to gtk3. It had a lot of bugs, but now it’s very stable, fast and with great gui.

  • bwat47

    interface looks FAR batter, can’t wait till this shows up in the arch repos!