Whether it’s CD rips, free Creative Commons music or recordings from last night’s band practice, almost everyone has audio files that they want to listen to on the go. This used to be the domain of MP3 players, but ever-increasing storage sizes for smartphones and memory cards means that smartphones are gaining traction as the all-in-one solution for listening to music on the go.
An advantage of using smartphones, particularly Android smartphones, over using MP3 players is the fact that you’re not locked in to a player’s particular software features. If you think that Android 2.3 player is simplistic or outdated, and you’re not loving Google Play Music’s focus on livestream music, then check out the following 10 Android music players.
Some of these players are available for free for a short trial period while others have a free basic app and a premium upgrade. Let us know if you know of any other player that should make this list.
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Poweramp is a full-featured, customizable audio player. In terms of audio tweaking, Poweramp has a 10-band graphic equalizer with bass and treble adjustments, stereo expansion, mono mixing and left/right balance controls. Poweramp also supports gapless playback, ReplayGain and has built-in last.fm scrobbling.
Poweramp comes with four different themes and features a large number of UI customization options. Plus, it will also download any missing album art for you. [$3.99; free 15-day trial available]
Neutron’s standout feature is its 32/64-bit audio rendering engine, which provides high-quality, HD audio playback. In addition to its high-quality rendering engine, Neutron comes with advanced audio control features such as a high-quality 4-band parametric equalizer, normalization, resampling as well as surround sound, crossfeed and rumble filter DSPs.
Neutron also allows you to tweak left/right balance and pitch. It also supports a variety of file formats, including lossless files, and is highly customizable. [$4.99; free 5-day trial available]
Rocket Music Player aims to be a complete music player for both advanced and basic use. It has a 5-band equalizer, the ability to fade in and out when playing and stopping, dynamic Live List playlists as well as a feature similar to "Up Next" in iTunes. Rocket also works with iSyncr, which will allow you to sync podcast bookmarks, playlists and play counts to iTunes.
Rocket Music Player’s Premium upgrade adds a 10-band equalizer, support for lossless audio formats (such as FLAC, APE, WavPack), gapless playback and ReplayGain, etc. [Free; $3.99 for Premium upgrade]
MixZing’s biggest attractions are its user interface and playlist features. MixZing’s Mood Player creates playlists from your library music based on the moods you select. MixZing can also automatically build playlists according to your feedback about songs. In addition, MixZing will download album art and automatically identify untagged music for you.
MixZing supports SHOUTcast Radio, so you have a large selection of radio stations to choose from. [Free; $4.99 for the upgrader, which removes ads]
PlayerPro is much like Poweramp, in that it provides a large number of features and customization options. PlayerPro features audio effects such as equalizer and reverb as well as support for Dolby, SRS and Beats audio enhancement. PlayerPro also allows you to share text notifications and album artwork on Twitter and Facebook.
In addition, you can swipe or even shake your device to change songs. There are more than 20 free skins available for PlayerPro, and it supports both grid and list views. [$4.95; 10-day free trial available]
Yes, you can get Winamp on your Android. Apart from being able to sync wirelessly with your PC and Mac, it can also import your iTunes library and playlists. In addition, it integrates with Android voice search and comes with last.fm scrobbling and access to artist news, biographies and information. Pro features include a 10-band equalizer, customizable home screen, FLAC support and gapless playback.
Winamp also displays lyrics for the song being played, while the album washer downloads missing album artwork and updates missing metadata. [Free; $4.99 for Winamp Pro; $2.99 for lyrics; $3.99 for album washer]
Fusion Music Player is a free player that is not only devoid of ads, but also doesn’t skimp on the features. Fusion Music Player has a 12-band equalizer and virtual surround sound. It also has a music discovery feature that works based on albums and artists. In addition, Fusion Music Player supports shake and wave gestures, SHOUTcast radio and dynamic playlists. You can also share what you’re listening to on Facebook and Twitter.
Some of the more unique features include an MP3 cutter, support for App2SD and the ability to listen to online charts of currently popular music, Bollywood included. [Free]
Sensor has the basic features you’d expect from an Android music player, such as a 5-band equalizer, bass boost and virtualizer. By far the most interesting feature of Sensor, though, is its support for gestures to control music playback. It comes with four modes: wave over, pocket, hammer and custom. In wave over mode, for instance, you can skip tracks by simply waving your hand over your device.
The custom sensor mode allows you to select the sensors you want to enable and the actions associated with these sensors. [Free; each sensor mode costs $1.00]
n7player’s main draw is its unique and eye-catching approach to displaying your music library. n7player’s user interface is based on OpenGL and consists of a 3D wall of album covers that also supports multi-touch. Aside from its unique user interface, n7player has a 5-band graphic equalizer, supports gapless playback and supports environmental effects and bass boost.
n7player has both automatic and manual album art downloading, and lyrics support via embedded lyrics as well as via the musiXmatch plugin. [$3.49; free 14-day trial available. Unlocker requires free version to be installed]
Beam Player Pro takes a different approach than most of the music players on this list. Instead of adding features, Beam Player focuses on providing a minimal and clean, Holo-themed music playing experience. Beam Player is a folder-based music player with full support for tablet-sized screens. In addition, Beam Player Pro comes with support for lossless formats such as FLAC and ALAC.
Beam Player Pro comes with a DashClock widget as well as a selection of homescreen and lockscreen widgets. [$1.29]