Plexamp updated, still lacking basic features

Plexamp, the devoted music player for Plex servers with a Plexpass, reached version 3 yesterday. While the under the hood feature list touts technical sweetness, the app itself seems to be missing some features.

2020 04 17 12.36.16 - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here
Greeted with this. Nothing comes up, ever. You can tap Home and get started. Seems like “tap home” would have been a more useful message.

Features such as casting your music to a device, playing local to the phone media, using multiple Plex servers as sources for your music, the UI feeling is a bit off (long press album art you get which visualizer you want to use, long press album name you can add to playlist,) no real right feeling way to view all library songs (you go to recent, hamburger, change the view there).

2020 04 17 12.43.40 - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here
What’s an -Amp without a visualizer? Bunches of selectable ones.

Mostly UI issues and unexpected errors until we get into the playing area and then it’s… it needs a one tap mixer because it simply does not sound good over the phone speakers. There is a mixer (home, settings, equalizer,) but the settings for equalizer don’t appear to have any way to save a preset.

Maybe this isn’t a thing a lot of people deal with, but I have two or three different ways of listening (mowing headset, motorcycle, whatever I’m testing this week,) and the ability to save multiple equalizer settings seems like other people would like that too.

2020 04 17 12.46.13 - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here
Lots and lots of error messages and all seem to go away

System notifications seem more intrusive somehow with this. Like the music fades more. I may be tripping on this particular bit but every “tok” of a notification I get feels like it’s going an extra half second on fade in and out. This may have nothing to do with Plexamp and more to do with having too much time on my hands.

2020 04 17 12.57.34 - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here
I’m assuming the album art mismatch was on the Plex Server side as my MP3 libraries have been there since time immemorial, but it was amusing to run across.

That said, the instant next track is nice.. reminds me a lot of WinAmp circa 1999. The audio it delivers is good but I’m going to have to put it against some other players to see if I can actually spot much past “slightly better”.

There’s a whole deep dive into what the new Plexamp can do, it’s a pretty cool project technically but aesthetically and on the user interface side it’s clunky.

Also the inability to cast music in this day and age, when you additionally have a Plex server up and running, seems like something that we’d have stopped using in 2017 or so.

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts

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