Amarok 2.1 "Let There Be Light" released

Amarok 2.1

After 5 months of hard work, the Amarok team is proud to present the next major version of Amarok, 2.1.
When Amarok 2.0 was released, we celebrated the first of many steps along what will be a long series of Amarok 2.x releases. The 2.0 release brought with it an entirely new foundation to build on, and a developer team more motivated than ever to make Amarok 2 the best music player possible. While Amarok 2.0 contained many new features and ideas, it was also lacking many features that users of the previous, very successful, versions of Amarok had come to expect. With the release of Amarok 2.1 we are not only starting to close this gap, but we are also introducing a number of new and unique features that will make your music listening experience even better.


The highlights of this release are:

Playlist Improvements

The playlist in Amarok 2.1 has undergone many improvements since the last release. You can now search and filter its content and queue tracks as well as tell Amarok to stop playing after a certain track. The biggest change however is the new playlist layout editor. It lets you make the playlist look the way you like it. Covers, ratings, genres or just a simple track name? It's up to you! It comes with a few layouts predefined and leaves the rest for your creativity!

Context View

The improved Context View comes with a new layout and makes better use of free space. Applet management has been improved and applets follow your KDE color scheme. Instead of using multiple pages with applets, new Context View displays them in one vertical column which can be reorganized with a handy widget at the bottom.

Bookmarking

Bookmarking is finally here! Bookmarking comes in two types, automatic and manual. When you are listening to a long podcast, audiobook (or any other track longer than 10 minutes) Amarok will automatically mark the last listened to position and auto resume playback when you return to the track. You can also manually bookmark a position in any track to save for later.

Amarok URLs

Amarok URLs allow you to create a link to a certain place in Amarok. For example, you could make an URL to a great song you found on Jamendo and send it to your friend. Her Amarok will open the Jamendo service and the song you found. Stumbled upon an exceptional audio book on LibriVox? Create a link and send it to your family. In this release we are just starting to explore what is possible using these URLs, so expect to see many interesting features based on this in the future.

Last.fm

The Last.fm service received an interface update and now allows you to play any tag, user, or artist radio. We have also added an option to mark songs in your local collection as loved. Now you can show how much love you have, even for local tracks. ;-)

ReplayGain Support

Amarok now supports ReplayGain natively. When it is enabled Amarok equalizes the volume of songs with ReplayGain tags to avoid big unexpected volume changes between songs. It currently requires the GStreamer Phonon backend.

Collection Headers

Headers in the collection browser now have a much cleaner, more distinctive look.

Media Devices

Album cover support for iPods has been added and many bugs have been fixed.

Compilation support

Thanks to the sleepless nights of many Amarok developers, identifying albums as compilations (aka "Various Artists") now works more reliably :)

Phonon Configuration

There's no need to leave Amarok in order to change the system-wide sound settings anymore. The Phonon configuration can now be opened from Amarok's preference dialog. This is especially handy when using Amarok in other desktop environments and operating systems.

and more!


Grab your copy of Amarok 2.1 today and rediscover music!

download

You can find videos of some of the above mentioned features in our YouTube account. If you want to find out what we are working on for Amarok 2.2 and beyond, check our blog posts on our Planet.

Comments

Feature wishlist...

Great work with the player, guys. Don't pay heed to the haters out there. Same thing happened with KDE 4, true, 4.0 and 4.1 blew (I even went to GNOME for a while because KDE 4 was unusable) but 4.2 brought back the goodness and stability I wanted. I'm sure the same will happen with Amarok 2. Here's my wishlist with the 1 feature Amarok 1.4 had that I REALLY want (maybe it is there and I have not been able to find it... and I know no other player out there that has it):

-- Automatic sorting of files!!! ---

I absolutely loved the feature in Amarok 1.4 where you could right-click the file in the playlist, and select "Move to collection", after which it would rename the file according to its ID3 tag and move it to the appropiate folder (/Artist Initial/Artist/Album) within your music folder... It really helped keep my music files in order. This is the main reason why I still use 1.4.

Apart from that, I'm not sure 2.1 still does it, but 1.4 would change the genre tag in music files to a number. Within Amarok, the tag would read "Rock" "Hip-Hop", etc, but in my iPod or in other programs the tag would be a number. I really didn't like this...

Keep up the good work guys!!

Bad color contrast in playlist

As example, in this figure (http://amarok.kde.org/files/playlistoldschool.png) there is a bad contrast between black and dark blue in the music that is playing (4 - Truenorth).

Finally Internet radios scrobbling works

I can now scrobble internet radios like Radio Paradise (Cool stream in amarok).
even love tracks!
thanks!!!!!!

Amarok 2 as it should have been

I am happy with the Amarok 2.1 release. It's how the Amarok 2 series should have been since the start, but nevertheless, as goes the old saying "it is better late than never". :)

still at 1.4, but i hope for 2.2

Hi dev team,

Great work, but i still use 1.4 because of the functionality to organize and delete songs from the playlist...
I hope 2.2 is my next release !
Thanks, Jan

just say wow

wow

ipod devices

Nice work, i like the changes. The only thing i discovered, is that the cover art is NOT transfered and neither am i capable of transferring podcasts...

I see a lot of comments that

I see a lot of comments that basically amount to less-than-helpful sniping about 2.1. If you want to inspire the (totally volunteer) developers to work on the features you find to be most important, why not give them well-reasoned (and polite) arguments in favor of that work?

With that in mind, here is my personal list of missing/problematic features that are keeping me from upgrading, along with reasons why I think they ought to be included or fixed.

*** Mass Storage Class (MSC) support ***
There are several reasons I see support for MSC devices as mandatory before I'll upgrade.

First, most non-Apple mobile audio players can be mounted as removable drives and store audio files that can then be played back, meaning that no specific support for their unique communications protocols is required to use them with Amarok 1.4. Putting MSC support into 2.x will widen considerably the potential number of users.

But secondly, and more importantly, Amarok 2.1 currently prevents MSC devices from working. If I plug in my SanDisk Sansa player while Amarok 2.1 is running, it gets in the way of KDE opening it in a file manager, but doesn't otherwise interact with the device. No notification appears in the device notifier. I have to quit Amarok, then attach the Sansa. Since my whole purpose in attaching the device is to transfer music or podcasts to it, that alone is enough to prevent me from upgrading to 2.1. I would be happy to accept the temporary necessity of dragging audio files from Amarok to my device manually, if Amarok didn't do that to MSC devices.

*** Proper Media Transport Protocol (MTP) support ***
The other more-or-less generic method for receiving multimedia files on a device is MTP, and Amarok 2.1 does support it. But so far, that support seems pretty buggy. It detects my Sansa in MTP mode (as a separate "Collection") and even shows me the tracks that are currently on it, but it shows them all as "unknown" tracks. And for the life of me, I can't figure out how to transfer anything to it. If I right-click a song in the local disk collection, I have the option to move an item to the Sansa, but not copy it. I don't know whether this is a real defect, or just a usability problem, but it would be nice if queuing songs for transfer to the device worked like it did in 1.4.

*** Support for Drag-n-Drop from the collection to Dolphin ***
This is a real problem for me. If I have a playlist loaded, I don't want to have to append a song to it before I can copy it to a different location. It may seem like a small issue, but it's a deeply annoying one for users who are used to being able to drag pretty much any object they want from one place to another. It's the kind of seemingly niggling problem that can make a user too uncomfortable with the application to keep using it.

I hope the fine developers working on Amarok don't take all this criticism to mean they messed up with 2.x. I don't think they did. It's just got a ways to go before it's user-ready, and these are what I perceive as the worst problems holding it back for general use.

Only one more feature left: Shuffle/randomize playlist

It now has the native Replay Gain I've been waiting for, and now there's only one thing left to bring back before I switch back to Amarok from Audacious: the ability to randomize/shuffle a playlist. Is this something that will be coming in the future? 'cause it's actually an important feature to me. I find it more sensible than shuffle play, 'cause I can actually see what song is going to be playing next.

how to edit the metadata

I upgraded Amarok on my Ubuntu by the source i found on kubuntu.org:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/kubuntu-ppa/backports/ubuntu jaunty main

The new release looks very great, but now i cant edit the metadata/ID3 via Amarok anymore.

1.4 and 2.1

I switched to amarok 2, went back to 1.4. Tried now 2.1, going back to 1.4 again...

Look, it's simple: when you make a new version of something, it should be better than the old one and not worse. I understand you are trying to make a new application, but - as you say - you are "reimplementing" the features found in Amarok 1.4??? Does that make sense? You made a new version, worse than the old one, and eventually you will be back to the same level as the old one???

I know kde started this new trend - releasing something that is not ready, which eventually gets better (nothing to complain about kde 4.2, but 4.0 was really a nightmare).

So now we have to wait a few more months to have Amarok working a bit better - and a bit better will mean like the old Amarok?

I hope really someone takes care of Amarok 1.4 and starts to build onto that... if after all these months Amarok 2 is still like that...

let's what I find missing in Amarok 2:
1) the interface is that of the kde theme. Why on earth? If 1.4 had individual themes, it means people didn't want to have amarok looking like the kde theme.
2) suggested songs
3) statistics
4) and a bunch of other stuff.

Now that my amarok 2 is taking 90 minutes to scan my collection - and that's a rescan - I think it's time to "killall amarok" and "make uninstall". Amarok 1.4 had "update". Amarok 2 doesn't have that. So now in a few months perhaps you will release amarok 2.2 which might have some of the features of amarok 1.4... it really doesn't make sense...

... like the cashew in kde... thank heavens for the "I hate the cashew" plasmoid...

Anyway, best of luck, I hope one day Amarok 2 will get better than 1.4

developers - early adopting users - wide masses

"I know kde started this new trend - releasing something that is not ready, which eventually gets better (nothing to complain about kde 4.2, but 4.0 was really a nightmare)."

Is it really _that_ difficult to read the release notes and release goals around KDE4 and KDE4 programs, announcing that there will be a lot regressions?

Is it so hard to trust the developers when they say, that Amarok 1 was a code and dependency nightmare making maintenance a pain, leave alone the idea of porting it to Mac and Windows?

Look, it's not that

Look, it's not that hard:

"lots of regressions" by definition excludes "new complete version"

if KDE 4.0 called itself kde 4.0rc1
and KDE 4.1 kde 4.0rc2
and KDE 4.2 kde 4.0

it would be great, we would know what we were installing.

and if the developers didn't make a big fuss about the new Amarok 2.0, calling it a great breakthrough when it had what you call "regressions" and I would say "bugs",

and called Amarok 2.0 "alpha"
and called Amarok 2.1 "beta"
and eventually something with the functionality of Amarok 1.4 (or better) "Amarok 2.0 final" - then we would know what we are downloading.

Imagine something like firefox doing the same - let's say you have firefox 3.1, firefox announces "greatly improved" version 3.5, and the "greatly improved" version doesn't have - say - tab support, which would be implemented "some time later", would you really call it a "new" version? If someone wants something that might not work, that's what svn is for - but a "release" should not be worse than the preceding version.

Thats a fair comment, but

Thats a fair comment, but then distro's should not be making KDE4 and Amarok 2 default on new installs until they are ready for the masses

Buggy as hell!

Looking at the feature list, I decided to finally switch from 1.4 - but what a bloody mess! I never thought such a buggy software would be released in KDE land :(.

Most of my music is on a Samba-Share: Apart from the fact that the KDE app Amarok cannot use kioslaves to access this, but I have to manually add the network drive with fstab, Amarok is dead slow. It freezes for minutes when browsing the collection (no speed problems in Dolphin). And with every new start, Amarok once again scans the collection - taking about an hour each time. So much for network transparancy.

Amarok also eats my ID3 tags. I don't know why and when, it simpy does that. Extremely annoying. As I read in the feedback, I'm not the only one...

And then the missing functionality: For serious tagging, I have to use an external app. I cannot use Amarok to integrete in my home music networt. I CANNOT EVEN EXPORT PLAYLISTS. Everything seems to be locked in in Amarok, and at the same time, Amarok is missing functionality, stability and even data integretiy!!!!

Playlists

"I CANNOT EVEN EXPORT PLAYLISTS."

What about the "export playlist" button in the playlist panel? ;-)
There's a script to save the playlist, too.

You're right - thank you! I

You're right - thank you! I didn't notice that button (and why is there an "import playlist" menu entry, but an "export playlist" button? Ok, Amarok 2 is famous for it's new interpretation of user friendlyness).

What is still more than annoying is the fact that Amarok keeps on deleting/changing ID3-Tags. Things like that must not happen.

What I'm also missing badly is some more elaborated tagging feature (like music brainz).

why support freebsd and not

why support freebsd and not mac? uniux discrimination?

Upgraded to 1.4

After months of struggling with Amarok2 today I finally had enough (Sound stopped working again). So after a bit of googling I found someone who showed me how to upgrade to version 1.4.

Everything is good once more. I can shuffle the playlist and send it to me portable media device again.

Upgraded?

I don't think it's possible to upgrade from version 2.*.* to 1.4. That would be downgrading lol :D

It's a lower version number

It's a lower version number with better functionality and stability. Whether you're concerned about arbitrary version numbers or usability for what constitutes an 'upgrade' is your decision, I'm gonna go with the latter.

When is the official Windows

When is the official Windows version going to be released?

Register the name now!!

Hey guys, firstly I wanna to say congratulations to everybody involved on the development of Amarok! Is the best player.

Secondly, today I read some argentinian newspapers and got this:

http://www.caradvice.com.au/32122/vw-names-pickup-amarok/

Volkswagen Amarok??? WTF!

Remote MySQL and labels back

Remote MySQL and labels back for the next version? Please? :-D

+1 on the SQL

I understand some (perhaps most) people want a 'playlist' editor. Amarok 2.1 seems to do that well.

For me, I needed a 'collection manager'. Amarok 1.4 did this much better, with MySQL backend support.

MySQL support was awesome because it was faster with large collections (30,000+ MP3s). With it I went and fixed my entire collection of music.

Some of my music I had re-ripped into FLAC, and it was a pain keeping track of everything.

Amarok 1.4 with MySQL was also awesome because you could take advantage of that MySQL backend and do anything you wanted with it... scripting, export your collection as HTML/XML, search for DUPLICATES, etc.

I completely understand the fact that many users will not want or use SQL. 1.4 seemed to have solved this nicely, because it defaulted to sqLite but still gave you the option to setup MySQL. I hope this feature returns, because in the future it will mean I have to compile Amarok 1.4 from source to keep using it on newer Linux distributions...

Really Amarok 2.2 we surely

Really Amarok 2.2 we surely change the multimedia experience on Linux

Various Artists Multi-CD Compilations

Wishlist: Support for multi-disc, multi-artist compilations -- Please. It's frustrating to see a few dozen entries for "Tooth & Nail 10th Anniversary box set" because there are 50+ artists spread across 6 cds.

Amarok 2.1 in Debian

Under Debian Lenny, I'm using the debian-desktop.org repositories for kde 4.2.3 so I don't have to run unstable/sid - And although dd doesn't supply amarok 2.1, I've found that you can get amarok relatively painlessly by doing the following:

- If you get libtag-extras0 from the squeeze repo;
# dpkg -i libtag-extras0_0.1.3-1_amd64.deb
- Add to your sources.list the kubuntu jaunty ppa;
# echo "http://ppa.launchpad.net/kubuntu-ppa/backports/ubuntu jaunty main" >> /etc/apt/sources.list
- Save the gpg key text from here to a file;
# apt-key add kubuntu-ppa.gpg
- And update apt;
# apt-get update
- Then you can install amarok:
# apt-get install amarok

This isn't ideal - and you'd probably want to disable the jaunty ppa in /etc/apt/sources.list afterwards - but hopefully this helps someone. Unless I'm doing it completely wrong and someone else I'm unaware of is supplying a nicer way to install amarok2.1 - If so, please tell!

Loved it, but I suggest to Amarok2 should have an equalizer!!!

I loved amarok's speed upon searching songs and how he manages my playlist...I liked it, but the audio quality of amarok2 compared to exaile is still poor. Exaile has a magnificent edge since it has an equalizer. Better quality sound and suits well both on headphones and actual settings. If exaile was as fast and has a better playlist manager, I'd really use exaile as my primary music player even though I'm using kde4...:(

The equalizer should be the topmost priority of the devs if they want to gain popularity, this was cited a million times already...If this won't happen, amarok2 won't be world dominating...

Works nicely, BUT...

No matter what I do 2.1 can only find 262 of the 1100+ songs in my collection! I have reinstalled it twice, I have "updated collection" twice or more, I have deleted anything "amarok" from .kde/share/apps/ folder and every time, Amarok comes up with only 262 files. Strange. Back to Songbird or Rythymbox, I guess, which is sad, because I really wanted to use Amarok.

Wikipedia applet

Hi all,

Amarok 2.1 is pretty good, I'm enjoying it ;) and I have to say it's seams quite usable till now. From now just file managment fails, at least for the kubuntu version. I'm having a silly problem with wikipedia applet, I've noticed that it only searches in the desktop language, in my case catalan, which means that most times the applet doesn't find anyting, as catalan is a small language. I'm courious to know if there's a way to configure the wikipedia search language without having to change the desktop or amarok language?

Thanks for amarok 2.1! It looks like soon is going to be as good as 1.4 amarok series and it's features, keep as you're doing!

Yet to try it out and a question.

Thanks for the hard work, I'll be trying this release out tomorrow.

I read the post throughly and didn't find any mention of a comeback of equalizer; should I take it that it isn't present in this release too? EQ is an essential feature for me, and yeah I have a powerful amplifier but with the headphone, EQ is a must-have.

Hopefully it will be added in the next version.

What do you do with the

What do you do with the equalizer + headphones?

I never really got the point of the equalizer. Once I used an eq when I was DJing a dance, but then I was constantly adjusting it per-song. For normal listening its never made sense to me.

Anyways I think phonon might support equalizers, but probably most of the backends don't. And none of us our interested enough to make anything happen with that really. Maybe a motivated eq-using dev will appear at some point.

Can't build any collection

Where should I put files so that they get scanned. Am using Mandriva's version 2.1. Amarok seems to telling me that it will scan all directories, but the scan is over in a second and nothing is in my collection. Most of the music is on an NTFS partition, but I copied a little on to an ext3 partition to avoid any problems with file permissions etc. Nothing is found. I've deleted all the amarok settings numerous occasions. Do I need to install mysql server to make it work.

It does play individual files OK, though.

Strange Problems

Amarok 2.1 sometimes does not show
- tags (nothing appears),
- bitrate ('?' appears),
- length ('?' appears).
I had to revert to 1.4.

context view dynamic scaling

Please add the ability for dynamic scaling in the context view section. I would love the ability to see the lyrics and current track all at once without needing to run the player in full screen (or resized to an ungodly large height to see everything) or clicking on random widget icons to see everything (this mainly affects the Lyrics widget but the others are pretty bad too).

Yet another Amarok release announced

In a press release from thurday (june 4th), Volkswagen announced that their new pickup will be called amarok:
"The new Volkswagen pickup is called Amarok. In Autumn 2009, the first pickup by a European volume manufacturer in South America is to be unveiled. The South American launch is set for Spring 2010, with the Amarok coming to Europe in the summer."

Various Artists

I'm a GNOME user, and I do not use AmaroK, but I must congrat you for the Various Artists implementation, there isn't any other Linux music player but AmaroK who made it :)

Thanks ...

Hi, it looks like a huge improvement.
But .. the MediaPlayer plugin shows ... nothing. What about this?
Would be nice if i could rearrange the playlist into the middle and the plugin view to the right ... that would be cool. On partys i would like to have a bigger playlist because that is the main thing on that use case.

Keep on great work ..

Amarok keeps deleting ID3 tags :(

Anybody else experiencing this problem?
When doing sorting work in the library using the ID3-tag windows of Amarok and the file management feature, sooner or later the point is reached where Amarok2 deletes the ID3 tag info of all songs currently in the playlist.
It has to be noted that this doesn't happen while editing the ID3 tags, but later on, when using the file management feature in order to copy the edited files to the correct point in the collection.

I've now had this several times both with beta versions of Amarok and with the final 2.1 version, and it is really really really annoying!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Work-around: Remove write rights

Since I don't want to bother with deleted tags but did not want to change back to another version, I simply removed write rights from the music files ( in terminal chmod -R a-w /path/to/your/collection ). Radical solution, in order to change sth, you have to permit yourself writing to these files and folders again :)
Hope this is solved soon.
Great software, apart from this. Thanks for your efforts, devs :)

I kind of confirm this, 'tho

I kind of confirm this, 'tho for me it just messed up things w/ tags.

I have several "missing" songs from some albums, but the actual file is there, what's missing is the ID3 tag of the song, somehow it got deleted. And for some other "missing" songs, the ID3 tags changed, now I have several songs w/ different artist (and albums)...

Right now I'm hunting down those "missing" songs in my library and correcting the ID3 tag... I have 2K+ songs, so this will take a while...

ID3 Tags

I kind of confirm this, 'tho for me it just messed up things w/ tags.

I have several "missing" songs from some albums, but the actual file is there, what's missing is the ID3 tag of the song, somehow it got deleted. And for some other "missing" songs, the ID3 tags changed, now I have several songs w/ different artist (and albums)...

Right now I'm hunting down those "missing" songs in my library and correcting the ID3 tag... I have 2K+ songs, so this will take a while...

It's sad, but somehow because

It's sad, but somehow because of annoying things like this Amarok - being my most used app in 1.4 times - is slowly getting out of use for me. As nowadays I have to use different programmes anyway for tasks like ID3 tag editing, UPNP stuff and so on, Amarok is getting superfluous.
I also have problems with Amarok not correctly scanning the MP3 directory, problems with the file manager feature and so on. 2.1 in some regards looks more "beta" than 2.0. 2.0 was beta because of missing ffeatures, 2.1 has the features back again, but buggy.
I'd like to have one program for all my media management, but as Amarok does not currently fullfill my needs, least of all the "data integrity", I have to use other apps :(.

pickup amarok ???

Nothing to do with subject, but did you see the new volkswagen pickup?
They named it Amarok =D

http://www.autoblog.com/2009/06/04/volkswagen-continues-inscrutable-nami...

I'm brazilian, so english may be funny

[ ]'s

How about .cue support ?

How about .cue support ?

It's in there.

It's in there.

I could not play any .cue,

I could not play any .cue, only m3u

its true, cue sheet support

its true,

cue sheet support is "in there" but not working :( , only cue sheets that are not in the collection can be played which is quite useless

check
http://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=112477 and
http://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=187587

About Amarok 2.1

I really can't understand the rush to release amarok 2.*. It remains unstable, very "heavy" for my pc and not so usable. It needs millions of miles just to reach the features of 1.4. I used amarok for more than 5 years, but now i switched to exaile. KDE did exactly the same mistake and lost many users. I hope both will improve before 2010!!!