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quantock

A fresh batch of ideas

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Hi there.   I have been intrigued by Music Box Alpha since hearing about it as I love Launchbox and what it's done for my emulation experience.   I recently decided to begin upgrading my entire music collection to Uncompressed FLAC as I finally have the storage capacity to make that reasonable.  I figured what a great opportunity to load everything into Music Box Alpha as I upgrade/tag/organize everything.  After using it for a bit now I wanted to share my thoughts.. I understand MBA is still very early in development and many suggestions have already been mentioned and added to the list, but I think there are some fresh new ideas here as well:


- Would much rather have albums order chronologically... currently they seem to only display alphabetically .

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- When in song view, organizing by album should have tracks listed in track # order.  Currently I can't even tell what secondary variable they are being ordered by.. Play Count?

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- Right clicking a file/album and have a "Go to folder" or "Open Folder location in Explorer" etc. option would be nice !

- Hovering over an album to give a floating Play/Pause option on top of the album art (maybe next & previous track as well)

- A Total song/album count at bottom/somewhere would be nifty

- Selecting a new song seems to be noticeably slow (2-3 full seconds).  Not sure if this is due to me using FLAC files which are bigger to load/accessing them over my NAS but I don't seem to notice a delay when using any other media player

 

Bonus Ideas:

- Launchbox includes a way to explore tons of artwork & manuals for game releases.. MBA should include a way to view album art, inside & liner notes, the media itself (Vinyl/CD), alternative release artwork etc.

- Loading screens have recently been added to Launchbox which include a spinning CD when the image is available.  It would be amazing if there was an option to display a little CD player/Record player in the bottom corner (where album art is currently shown) which would spin with the scan of the physical media when available while the disc is playing.  Something similar to the Dreamcast's CD player but from a top down view:

 

 

Anyways, the ideas are generally listed in order of importance/estimated ease of implementing to more aesthetic/non essential but cool.  Keep up the good work!

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Some Ideas that I think could help.

  • Treat artist art like collections. If a picture is not available for an artist use a collage of the album art. this would be especially nice for the various artist folder.
  • Add metadata tags for musicbrainz or other databases. This would help with finding artwork and identifying tracks and keeping albums with the same name separate like Weezer's blue green and red albums 

These are just a few ideas that I think help with the overall experience.

Thanks

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Launchbox includes a way to explore tons of artwork & manuals for game releases.. MBA should include a way to view album art, inside & liner notes, the media itself (Vinyl/CD), alternative release artwork etc.

Created an account to suggest this...

I'm ripping my CDs and scanning it all.

Would be nice to view both front and back, any booklets (as PDF like game manuals in Launchbox), and CD art.

Responded here to show additional support of this idea.

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23 hours ago, PCguy730 said:

Created an account to suggest this...

I'm ripping my CDs and scanning it all.

Would be nice to view both front and back, any booklets (as PDF like game manuals in Launchbox), and CD art.

Responded here to show additional support of this idea.

That would indeed be amazing, but we'd need a source for all that stuff. Unfortunately I'm not aware of any place to download booklets and such.

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Hi Jason,

I have been really enjoying MBA and bought a license as I began to approach the 1000 song limit 🙂

Thanks for being so responsive via the forums... I also feel like some of my suggestions from this thread potentially inspired some of the features included in the last release.. namely the right click go to folder option and the bar loading animation which is a nice touch and good solution to the semi-awkward loading periods i mentioned in my OP.  I was def happy to see these features included!

After some more time with the program I have come up with another list of ideas I'd like to share with you.  Before doing that though I want to respond to some of the other posters as well as you:

On 6/25/2019 at 7:41 PM, Jason Carr said:

That would indeed be amazing, but we'd need a source for all that stuff. Unfortunately I'm not aware of any place to download booklets and such.

It seems like Discogs has a lot of additional artwork and scans for many of the albums in its database.  That could be a good place to start.  Also just including support for us to manually put the files in a directory (and each album would have its own directory with the name of the album?) and pull them by filename or something would be nice as well.  I'm sure the way you have it working in Launchbox could be well adapted.

 

On 6/24/2019 at 11:41 AM, Drean said:

Some Ideas that I think could help.

  • Treat artist art like collections. If a picture is not available for an artist use a collage of the album art. this would be especially nice for the various artist folder.
  • Add metadata tags for musicbrainz or other databases. This would help with finding artwork and identifying tracks and keeping albums with the same name separate like Weezer's blue green and red albums 

These are just a few ideas that I think help with the overall experience.

Thanks

I really like the idea of using a collage and/or slide show of album art in place of artists who don't have pictures.  This could also be a cool option even for artists you DO have pictures for.  You could choose in settings to show Artist picture in background, or a collage or slide show of album art, or have it randomly pick each time you click a new artist, or cycle through them... also having support for multiple artist pictures so you can have a slide show or have it pick a random one for background would be nice.

Having support for musicbrainz would be nice.. I use MBA in tandem with  mp3tag which seems to work well.  I read somewhere else you thought about including mp3tag functionality which surely would be nice.. i don't mind using it separately though .  It works well with being able to easily open the location of songs/albums now, and doing quick metadata touch up via MBA is working well after the latest release.  Again I have no problem doing bulk metadata fixing up via mp3tag.

 

I already mentioned this in my OP and have seen some other posters mention it elsewhere on the forum but I would like to reiterate how absolutely AWESOME it would be if Albums would list in order of release date rather than alphabetical .  I don't imagine this would be very hard to implement and it would be great to see ASAP imo.  I'm not sure how you plan to implement this if you've thought about it already.. in the right click menu having "Organize by: > Alphabetical / Year (Release Date)" Or have a Toggle switch / drop down (if more than 2 ways of organizing are included) up at the top of the UI or something?

 

Anyways here is my 2nd batch of fresh ideas..

  • A lot of times when I click an album that is currently on the bottom row... it seems like nothing happens.  so without thinking I click it again thinking my click "didn't register".. it usually takes me 3-5 seconds of staring at my screen to notice oh.. the album opened up below what is currently visible, so i have to scroll down to see the track listing... would it be possible to auto scroll the screen down to accomodate the tracklist that just spawned so it is in focus and totally visible?
  • Pressing F5 to trigger a metadata and/or image refresh on the currently selected item would be fantastic 😄
  • I'm sure you are planning on this but being able to interact with the Now Playing queue would obviously be great.. being able to insert tracks into an active queue (drag and drop and/or right click item and select (add to Now playing queue)) / being able to reorder songs in queue (drag and drop and/or right click move up move down move to top move to bottom etc.)/ being able to remove songs from queue (right click, remove from now playing) would all be great to see sooner than later 😄
  • For mice that have forward/back buttons, supporting these would be great for navigating the interface!
  • Being able to control the Psychedelic color changing setting would be cool.  For starters, changing the speed the colors cycle would be nice. Also being able to choose your color gradient (instead of full rainbow, just orange and blue, or yellow green and red, etc. maybe up to 2 3 or 4 colors,)  to go even further - for reference look at RGB case lighting or keyboards with rgb lighting software and what they offer -  various settings such as color wave, color strobe, sync color to sound volume etc. etc.  Obviously not essential but would def be fun & cool and give your application further unique appeal 🙂

I think these would all make nice additions to the experience.. hopefully some (or all 🤞) sound worthwhile & enticing to you as well

Thanks again for both LB & MBA... it's almost as much (or even more!) fun playing with these apps than the games & music themselves lol

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Hehehe, thank you @quantock; all great to hear. All noted as well. We did just add metadata editing, so we're close to having those mp3tag features integrated, though we still need the ability to change the images in the tags. Most of the things you mentioned were already planned, and I've noted the new requests. :)

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