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Aqualung audio player

July 10, 2009 — BarryK
As mentioned in the previous post, I'm on the home run (hopefully) with preparing 416alpha. Invariably, I think it is ready and I burn a CD, but then discover something that needs fixing...

I tested Pmusic, version 0.7.2, tried to play the "2barks" file, nothing, not a peep. Sound is working, the 'aplay' utility plays it, Gxine plays it. So what's the problem? I don't know, but that set me thinking of the situation with audio players in Puppy...

It's a bit of a mish-mash. Puppy has /usr/local/bin/defaultmediaplayer, which launches gxine if it is installed. However, Gxine, and the underlying xine-lib, is quite temperamental when it comes to playing audio files. I did some simple tests. I have a little collection of .au, .wav, .ogg and .mp3 audio files, and I tested them on some different players...

Gxine: plays short .au and .wav files very poorly. Also has that awful optical-drive probe everytime.
Alsaplayer: also plays .au and .wav files poorly, even worse than Gxine, some of them no sound at all.
Sweep: this is an editor/recorder, but as a simple player it is very good. Every file played beautifully. Sweep is in Puppy 415+.
Aqualung: Played all the audio files perfectly.

Something that is quite remarkable about Aqualung is that it's dependencies match very well with what is in Puppy 415+:


Also very good is what it doesn't need, like it doesn't need dbus.

Aqualung is very sophisticated. It is a player, with the usual stuff, including playlists. It also plays podcasts, and it is also a CD ripper.

So, 416 will have Aqualung. I have taken out Pmusic, but if you guys report that you like aqualung then perhaps I could give consideration to removing Pcdripper, Ripoff, and pCD -- although these are quite small and may offer some unique feature not offered by Aqualung -- well, play with 416 and see what you think.

To tidy up handling of audio, there needs to be a separate /usr/local/bin/defaultaudioplayer, as distinct from defaultmediaplayer. Which I have now implemented. As aqualung is installed, that is what defaultaudioplayer will launch.

I have also modified the run actions of all audio files in rox-filer to launch the defaultaudioplayer.


Media play

Aqualung skins
Username: BarryK
"To save space, I have only put in one skin, named "plain". I suppose the skins could be an extra PET package.

Username: ttuuxxx
"Hi Barry another player we are using in 2.14X for default Audioplayer is BMP, Beep Media Player is no loger being developed, But it doesn't matter, its stable, small fast, uses most of XMMS plugins that you can compile as gtk2, uses XMMS and Winamp themes, plus it has other addons etc, its actually very nice. The sources you can get at It plays everything also, also mikmod plugin is handy for sdl games. I just added some plugins to2.14X that tempestuous packaged for Flac,AAC,WMA support. also if you like Aqualung I have a 583.03 KB pet version Compiled on 4 series that comes with Streamtuner for 1000's of current online radio stations. Its a great size for both apps combined. the link to the packages is They both are great audio/cd players :) Great news Barry, I'm sure lots of puppy users will be happy with the new Audioplayer, they take a lot less resources to listen to online media or cds than gxine does. ttuuxxx

Aqualung by ttuuxxx
Username: happypuppy
"Close,but no cigar. ttuuxxx's .pet package is compiled without JACK and LADSPA support,so it's useless for most audiophiles.

.wav on Pmusic 0.7.2
Username: charlie6
"Hi Barry, ...tried on current Puppy 4.1.2 k2.6.25.16 frugal .. 2barks.wav (or ant .wav file) don't bark at all !?? many thanks again for Puppy! cheers ! charlie

.wav on Pmusic 0.7.2
Username: charlie6
"Hi Barry, ...tried on current Puppy 4.1.2 k2.6.25.16 frugal .. 2barks.wav (or ant .wav file) don't bark at all !?? many thanks again for Puppy! cheers ! charlie

Username: 01micko
"Hello Barry A request... can you put a script calling aplay to play the 2barks.wav in ~/startup please? (Or is it better in .xinitrc?) I do it sometimes myself, have tried both methods. It's just nice to know sound is working after each reboot. Cheers

aqualung maximum bang for buck
Username: tempestuous
"Well I prefer the look and feel of BMP or XMMS (or Audacious) ... but certainly Aqualung is a clear winner in the size stakes, especially, as Barry says, since it achieves broad audio codec support by linking directly to libraries already contained in Puppy. Aqualung with only one skin included is just 900KB uncompressed. BMP- with all useful codecs included is 4.8MB uncompressed! AAC support causes 420KB of this, because the libfaad library needs to be added. But generally, BMP's plugins are large. The equaliser, alone, is 1.7MB.

Username: tempestuous
"happypuppy, I've experimented quite a bit with audiophile computer audio reproduction, with results which don't quite match high end CD players. So I would be interested to know what JACK and LADSPA achieve in terms of audio quality. I thought they just related to functionality?

Username: ttuuxxx
"Oh sorry Barry Beep Mediaplayer sources are located at The url I gave for sources is for BMPX that version uses extra libs, this version should compile fine, and having it compiled with jacksupport is just nuts, like we have the extra space to include jack, sorry happypuppy but seriously we don't have a few extra MB compressed to toss at Jack, that I think will always be a addon. Most puppy needs in the mainstream is a basic audioplayer that plays online streams, music cd's, mp3's and your run of the mill codeC, High-end Audio always comes with High-end size, that is more of specialized versions of puppy. If the media player comes with a eq, that even better, but thats about all I think you'll ever seen in a 100MB puppy official release. ttuuxxx

Username: ttuuxxx
"Ok guys you got me there, lol I just found a thread where Dougal compiled Agualung back in 2006 and he didn't need jack server just jacklib and if that is what your talking about then YES Aqualung is the clear-choice winner for size, his pet was around 600kb compressed with all the addon features which is amazing, :) here's his version If something like that could be achieved again, by all means I'm 100% for it. Not often am I wrong, but this case I was. ttuuxxx

Username: BarryK
"My aqualung pet package is 301KB. I did some optimising of the images, and probably I could get it to share with some images already in Puppy and get it down further. My own audio requirements are pretty basic, and I know nothing about LADSPA... but the wikipedia will enlighten me: I compiled Aqualung without LADSPA support, but it appears the 'configure' script expected something to be there to support LADSPA but it wasn't -- so, is there some package that would need to be installed first? Also, do we really need LADSPA, or is that too exotic for most Puppy users?

Re: mplayer
Username: BarryK
"linuxcbon, You will have to do a search of my blog to find out why. I have a long history of trying to use mplayer.

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