Flac Files & WMP12, WMC & Win7 32 or 64 bit, For Those That Care

gimpodgimpod Posts: 1,795
First for clarity WMP = Windows Media Player 12 & WMC = Windows Media Center, for Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32 or 64bit. Also remember that WMC is just basically a 10 foot interface for WMP, So anything that works in WMP will also work in WMC.

Secondly I’ve tried most all trial & free media players for windows like “FooBar, Media Monkey, Jriver, XMBC, ..etc” and they all failed badly for what I wanted. They were for the most part bloated with so called “Features” that were difficult to set-up and figure out and for my purpose were of no use.

What I needed in a media player for music was a simple player that would play flac files and make use of the embedded metadata. The problem with WMP & WMC is they don’t natively support flac files or read the metadata. Not a big problem you can get a codec pack like Shark007’s ADVANCED_Codecs comes with both 32 & 64bit codecs and works pretty well for the most part, that takes care of the playing flac files with only two big hiccups, plus your loading a bunch of other codecs you may not want or need.

1. Still no tag support. This is easily fixed you just need to download and install this program called “WMP Tag Plus”, It’s free and here’s a link.

2. When playing say “Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon” for example you would get a break between the tracks, If you converted the flac’s to wav’s WMP would play them just fine but would have problems with the tags as there is really no standard way to put tags in a wave file that everyone follows.

Well this was driving me nuts until I was reading on MSDN (Microsoft Software Developer Network) that since Windows Media Player 12, Windows was moving away from using DirectX and going toward an API (Application Programing Interface) called WMF or “Windows Media Foundation” thus deprecating all DirectX codes, Now seeing all codec packs that I know of use all freeware DirectX codecs this all started to make sense to me. What was happing I believe was WMP when trying to play a flac file would look for a WMF flac codec and not finding one would then look for a DirectX codec upon finding one load it building a graft (this is a bit complex and you would need to know the DirectX API and programming to understand) then play it and when WMP was done playing the file it would dump the whole DirectX graph and start all over again on the next flac file hence the break between tracks.

Once I figured out what was going on this was easily fixed also by downloading and installing “mfFLAC.msi” also free from sourceforge a WMF codec for flac files here's a link , Problem fixed! Now I have full flac and tag support in both WMP & WMC that just plain works.

Now before you guys gang up on me for using the stock software that comes with Windows let me say that they both just WORK with no bs. Now oddly enough WMC seems to be the only software I’ve used that has a 10 foot interface, works easily with my remote (iMON Insider, the only one I’ve found that can cold boot a computer remotely, unfortunately it’s no longer available) and can reliably play full unconverted DVDs from hard disks. When I rip my DVDs I rip the whole DVD menu’s and all to the hard disk and the only editing I’ll do if needed is change the play back so it go’s strait to the main menu. At the moment I have 16tbs (2 x 2tb & 3 x 4tb HDDs) of HD space with around 800 DVDs and around 300 CD’s (uncompressed flacs) with just over 6tbs free space left, Plus I use a 120gb SSD for the O.S. and software.

It took me long enough but two little free programs and all is well in gimpland. :smile:
Pink Floyd, Just makes me want to turn it up too 12 and share it with the world!!. JMO
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“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” ~ Mark Twain

Unfortunately for most of us we only get to experience the first day and then we can't even remember it.
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"Close only counts in Horseshoes, Hand Grenades and Thermonuclear Weapons."
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Gimpod Custom 4th & 5th Gen SDA Circuit Boards
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"The best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction." ~ Kenneth Swauger

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