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Old 11-15-2004, 01:00 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2002
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Default PocketMusic Bundle: A Powerful Package

<span><b>Introduction</b></span><br />You don’t need any fancy MP3 playing hardware if you’ve got <a href="http://www.pocketmind.com/pmfp.htm">PocketMind’s PocketMusic Player Bundle</a> on your Pocket PC. This award-winning software will turn your Pocket PC into a serious music-playing machine, capable of playing MP3, WMA, OGG Vorbis, Audible Books, and HTTP streaming audio. Don’t take my word for it though, let’s look at the features!<br /><br /><span><b>The Interface</b></span><br />The first thing you’ll see when you fire up PocketMusic is the wonderful, candy-like screen:<br /><br /> <img src="http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/images/web/2003/pocketmusic1.jpg" /> <br /><br />The buttons are logically arranged and sized to enable finger operation. Other applications have large buttons, but this is the first one I’ve seen that allows me to fast forward, rewind and adjust the volume with the tip of my finger. <br /><br />On each side of the “function cluster” are buttons that will enhance the listening experience. On the left is the X-Bass, Repeat and Lock buttons. X-Bass really adds a punch to your music, Repeat will loop a single song or a playlist, and Lock will disable the hardware buttons. The set of buttons on the right are EQ, Shuffle and Mode. EQ toggles on the Equalizer (which can be set via the options button), Shuffle will play a random selection of songs from your playlist, and Mode will switch to landscape mode.<br /><br />Yes, you heard me right – Landscape mode! <br /><br /><img src="http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/images/web/2003/pocketmusic2.jpg" /> <br /><br />This is an AWESOME feature if you have a car mount. This mode displays the same features as portrait mode, but moves things around a bit. All of the buttons are moved to the right of the cluster and the volume is oriented vertically to the left of the cluster. Very useful!<br /><br />Another feature of this application is the Today Screen plug-in:<br /><br /><img src="http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/images/web/2003/pocketmusic7.jpg" /> <br /><br />This means that you can launch PocketMusic and control the most important settings directly from your Today Screen. Yet another one of the little ways where PocketMusic goes the extra mile.<br /><br /><span><b>Playlists</b></span><br />On the far right of the screen is the Playlist button. This button launches the Playlist screen, which is one of the most useful (and best looking) that I’ve seen. You can import from a file, folder or URL. You can also view information about individual songs via the Show Selected Item Info menu option.<br /><br />Previewing songs is a snap – you can play anything you like directly via the on-screen controls: <br /><br /><img src="http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/images/web/2003/pocketmusic8.jpg" /> <br /><br />Sorting and cleaning up your files is easy, too. If you’re like me, you’ve imported the same song on more than one occasion. The Remove menu gives you the option of removing duplicates, and the Misc. option lets you remove “Dead Files” and even allows you to erase files! This is a great time-saving feature, as it removes the need for you to delete files manually from File Explorer.<br /><br /><span><b>Options</b></span><br />The Options button is on the far left of the main screen. Tapping Options will open up the extensive options list:<br /><br /><img src="http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/images/web/2003/pocketmusic3.jpg" /> <br /><br />You can set your equalizer here, switch to WinAmp skin mode (so you can use WinAmp skins), switch to landscape, set your key mappings, save and organize bookmarks, and organize your playlist. <br /><br />The Media Catalog feature of the Playlist Organizer is extremely cool:<br /><br /><img src="http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/images/web/2003/pocketmusic9.jpg" /> <br /><br />It breaks your music down into categories, complete with artist, album and song information. This allows you to add whole genres and entire albums to your playlist in one fell swoop. Yet another great time-saving, well-thought-out feature!<br /><br /><span><b>Player Settings</b></span><br />The Player settings are accessible from the Options menu. This is where you can really get down to business and optimize the player to match your specific needs. The options are too numerous to go into detail, but I’ll point out a few highlights for you. First of all, PocketMusic supports crossfading, gapless playback, and will even remove silence from the beginning and end of individual tracks:<br /><br /><img src="http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/images/web/2003/pocketmusic10.jpg" /> <br /><br />The player can also be set to start playback on launch, it can continue from the last position at start, and it can load either local content or a folder (even a mapped network folder).<br /><br />One of the neatest little features of the player is the Timer function. You can set the device to be turned off if not used for a specified period of time, and you can even set it to wake up the device and start playing at a set time! Throw out your clock radio; THIS is the way to wake up! <br /><br /><span><b>Extra Goodies</b></span><br />PocketMusic sports the official Microsoft “Designed for Windows Mobile” logo, won the Pocket PC Magazine Awards 2004 Audio Category and is available in Spanish, French and German. There’s even a <a href="http://www.pocketmind.com/pocketmusicsp.htm">Smartphone version</a> available! Pocket Mind has also just released a beta version of their new “<a href="http://www.pocketmind.com/files/CDtoMobileBeta.zip">CD to Mobile</a>” software which will (you guessed it) help you copy your music from a CD directly to your Pocket PC. <a href="http://www.pocketmind.com/images/cdtomobile.jpg">Check out the screenshot </a>for a taste of what you'll get.<br /><br /><span><b>Conclusion</b></span><br />The PocketMusic Player bundle is the best and most powerful music application I’ve used. By combining useful features with a usable interface, they’ve moved their application to the top of my list of favorites! The PocketMusic Player bundle <a href="http://www.pocketmind.com/pm_fp.htm">can be purchased for $19.95.</a><br /><br />- - - - - - - - - - <br /><span>The above article is a paid advertisement for Pocket Mind and does not necessarily represent the views of Pocket PC Thoughts.</span>
 
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