WACUP

General => General Discussion => Topic started by: Axel Slingerland on February 08, 2022, 01:52:04 PM

Title: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 08, 2022, 01:52:04 PM
Hello DrO,

You may recall back in June 2020, I sent you an email (out of the blue, thanks again for replying!) asking about your Winamp Album Art plugin. Once I figured out that was a "Senior Moment" I told you I had never heard of WACUP before, and I would have to look into it. Well, it took awhile before I remembered to do that. Another senior moment, I suppose (I get a lot of those now that I'm in my mid-60's), but I usually remember things eventually. In addition to that my health had been doing the yo yo thing for awhile, and I have recently started to feel a little more towards my normal self again.

I tend to remember things when something reminds me of them. That was the case with Winamp, when I decided I wanted to try to make parts of my modified copy of Major Tom Remix (originally for Winamp 2.6, if I recall correctly, but this particular one was updated for Winamp 5.666) bigger and thus more visible. I can see the Amp and EQ windows ok, which are "Double Sized", but the rest of the windows aren't capable of that. I increased the font size in the Playlist, but I would like to make all window borders and title bars the same size.

I remember back in the old days some people made some outrageous skins that were nothing like any of the standard stuff, but I have no idea how that was done. I can update the images, but I don't know how to make the window borders twice their normal size. That is basically all I want to do.

Can you (or anyone) point me in the right direction, as searching Google has turned up very little, and most of what I did find I couldn't understand a word of. One thing that came up that I recognized, was WACUP might provide some insight. So here I am, finally looking into it. :)

Do you have any suggestions for me? I would appreciate it very much.

Also, I see you have mentioned "patched 5.666" in many places on the forum. How do I tell if my copy fits that description? In the About listing it says "v5.666 Build 3516 (x86)." Nevermind... I found what that means. :)

Thanks in advance,

Ax
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Eris Lund on February 08, 2022, 02:45:56 PM
You'll find what you need in the preferences under the "Classic Skin" section, I don't know what it's called again unfortunately (not on the computer at the moment), so you'll have to look what it's called there.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: dro on February 08, 2022, 03:51:15 PM
Winamp when using a classic/2.x style skin will only ever double-size the main & equaliser windows (unless the option to double-size the equaliser window is un-checked). There's nothing that can be done to change that either in it's configuration or via modifying the skins.

WACUP will double-size all of the classic skin window frames that it can along with the playlist editor & video windows. If using 3rd plug-ins that add their own windows, those typically will not be double-sized to match as there's some compatibility issues with generically forcing such a behave & so it needs updates to have them opt-in by reporting they support the handling.

Otherwise the "outrageous skins that were nothing like any of the standard stuff" are winamp3/modern style skins which allow for a freeform design but they're much more involved to create/edit vs the classic/2.x style ones where it's just editing a few bitmap files. There are some modern skins including one that's included with WACUP which offers a scalable classic skin like appearance that might be appropriate (https://getwacup.com/community/index.php?topic=595.0).

There's also the issue that a plain Winamp install will often be smaller than it should be when the Windows text scaling is enabled which may not be helping - something else that WACUP does by telling the OS to not mess around with things which may also help if you're struggling to see the windows.

If you try out the WACUP preview, you're best ensuring you install it into a separate folder from your existing Winamp install so it's easier to compare & try things out between the 2 installs.

-dro
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 08, 2022, 05:47:44 PM
Wow... I forgot how fast you reply. :)

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There's nothing that can be done to change that either in it's configuration or via modifying the skins.
I was afraid you would say that...

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WACUP will double-size all of the classic skin window frames that it can along with the playlist editor & video windows.
Those are the primary windows I would like to double, along with the Main and EQ windows.


Quote
Otherwise the "outrageous skins that were nothing like any of the standard stuff" are winamp3/modern style skins...
20 years is a long time, specially for someone with a bad memory to begin with.

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There are some modern skins including one that's included with WACUP which offers a scalable classic skin like appearance that might be appropriate (https://getwacup.com/community/index.php?topic=595.0).
Wow... That looks better than the original.

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There's also the issue that a plain Winamp install will often be smaller than it should be when the Windows text scaling is enabled which may not be helping...
I don't think that's the case here because I tried installing 2.9 and Major Tom looked the same as in 5.666. More likely it's that I still need new glasses, and my eye Doctor's office is still basically shut down, as he's old and very concerned with the pandemic.

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...you're best ensuring you install it into a separate folder from your existing Winamp install so it's easier to compare & try things out between the 2 installs.
Ok, thanks!
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: dro on February 09, 2022, 12:31:07 AM
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There's nothing that can be done to change that either in it's configuration or via modifying the skins.
I was afraid you would say that...

Quote
WACUP will double-size all of the classic skin window frames that it can along with the playlist editor & video windows.
Those are the primary windows I would like to double, along with the Main and EQ windows.
The whole point of WACUP is to improve on things that Winamp did whilst trying to keep the 'classic' Winamp experience alive when it's pretty clear now that 'classic' Winamp is a dead product & whatever "new" may arrive under the Winamp brand is not going to have much to do with what came before.

So with WACUP all of the primary windows will follow the double- (or as the beta testers currently have access to, triple-) sizing of the classic skin windows. If you're only wanting to use a pure Winamp install then it won't do what you want without making / modifying skins or getting someone to make a plug-in that replaces the window drawing & a slew of other things (which is what WACUP started out doing).

I've done the hard work to be able to do just what is wanted with classic skins so please excuse my exasperation at those parts of your reply that I quoted along with offering a safe means of trying out WACUP to confirm that it's going to show the skin in the manner wanted.

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There's also the issue that a plain Winamp install will often be smaller than it should be when the Windows text scaling is enabled which may not be helping...
I don't think that's the case here because I tried installing 2.9 and Major Tom looked the same as in 5.666. More likely it's that I still need new glasses, and my eye Doctor's office is still basically shut down, as he's old and very concerned with the pandemic.
Any Winamp version will be affected in the same manner with the OS setting I mentioned if its enabled trying to help whether its 2.9 or 5.666 or anything older as that's what happens with such programs from the OS trying to be helpful but all it does is make Winamp smaller.

-dro
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 09, 2022, 03:11:14 AM
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I've done the hard work to be able to do just what is wanted with classic skins so please excuse my exasperation at those parts of your reply that I quoted along with offering a safe means of trying out WACUP to confirm that it's going to show the skin in the manner wanted.
No need for exasperation... I didn't say anything about it before because I hadn't installed it yet. But it's installed now and I have to say it is very impressive. As my old Pappy used to say, Ya done good!

There was one little hiccup, but it was my doing and easy to fix. I had installed a copy of Winamp for it and when I tried to install WACUP it stalled, saying it couldn't detect my Internet connection (which was active) and it needed it to install along with WACUP. I assumed it would need it so I installed it while WACUP was downloading. But I just uninstalled it, changed the folder name to WACUP and dropped both install files into to it and fired up the WACUP installer again and it purred like a kitten.

After it finished, and I had selected Victhor's Winamp Classic Modern skin, I dropped a copy of my Axified Major Tom Remix in the skins folder and it looks absolutely fabulous!

Thank YOU, DrO!
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: dro on February 11, 2022, 10:39:47 PM
There was one little hiccup, but it was my doing and easy to fix. I had installed a copy of Winamp for it and when I tried to install WACUP it stalled, saying it couldn't detect my Internet connection (which was active) and it needed it to install along with WACUP. I assumed it would need it so I installed it while WACUP was downloading. But I just uninstalled it, changed the folder name to WACUP and dropped both install files into to it and fired up the WACUP installer again and it purred like a kitten.
The internet connection complaint is an odd bug that happens for some due to how the installer does that check which I changed back in December with the beta builds to use a different preferred way which seems to have fixed that issue from testing. A prior Winamp install isn't needed for WACUP to be installed as it'll try to get what's needed but most of the online aspect can be skipped if using the installer the error prompt should have shown. Though as you got it installed & what I've changed in general it should be far less of an issue for anyone when a new preview build eventually appears :)

After it finished, and I had selected Victhor's Winamp Classic Modern skin, I dropped a copy of my Axified Major Tom Remix in the skins folder and it looks absolutely fabulous!
You're welcome & that's good to hear it worked :)

-dro
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 13, 2022, 08:09:55 AM
I probably should have installed it first, and gave it a run to see what it could do and such, but to be honest, I actually didn't pick up on you being the developer of WACUP until after I had done that and I was trying to figure out what you meant when you said you had "...done the hard work..." I was sitting here half-staring at the screen because I was in pain, and half-confused because, well, I just get that way sometimes. (Specially when I'm in pain...) Then I noticed your Forum Title and I finally understood what you meant, both about that and what you said in one of the emails you sent me about how you were "progressing with WACUP." I thought to myself, "Duh... Aren't you the observant one!"  :o

Then to reinforce that idea, every question I had about WACUP was either answered by Eris Lund, or by my digging a little deeper into the forum when ever I had a question that I didn't want to ask because I figured it had probably been asked and answered a thousand times already. People who won't look for answers to their questions before they ask them used to really irritate me when I was the Admin at PC Pitstop forums back in the early 2000's.

So after playing around with the skin for most of the night the other night, I was able to get the Major Tom Remix skin fixed the way I wanted it. The only thing that was being stubborn was the background color of the scroll bars. I found out those colors come from the default Winamp skin. What the website that I found out about that and the color dots in the genex.bmp on did not mention was that you have to reboot your computer for changes to the background color of the scroll bars to take effect. No matter how I set them, they stayed dark blue (or later white) until I shut my computer down to go somewhere and when I turned my computer on again later, they were the color I had specified in the genex.bmp file dots earlier. But it's all good now. I think computers age in dog years or something... If they do, this poor old PC is 56 years old. I've had it for 7 years, but the mainboard is a year older. So maybe my computer just needed a nap? (https://s19.postimg.cc/4kf6fpjub/rofl3.gif)

Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 13, 2022, 08:48:01 PM
Hi Axel,

Welcome to WACUP and the forum. I retired before I got tired.  :)

Dro is awesome. For 1 guy to do all he does is almost unbelievable. Other forum members (including myself) try to help with answering questions we think we know the answers to. Dro will step in, sooner than later, to correct what we get wrong and/or expand on the conversation. 

... People who won't look for answers to their questions before they ask them used to really irritate me when I was the Admin at PC Pitstop forums back in the early 2000's.

I agree with this comment in general, but sometimes answers are needed faster than searching will provide them. I used PC Pitstop a lot back in the day. I was probably one of those who irritated you from time to time. Sorry.

... I think computers age in dog years or something... If they do, this poor old PC is 56 years old. I've had it for 7 years, but the mainboard is a year older. So maybe my computer just needed a nap? (https://s19.postimg.cc/4kf6fpjub/rofl3.gif)

You are basically correct. My computer is older than yours and badly in need of an upgrade. For the past few beta builds, my WACUP configuration has been maxing out my cpu for a couple of seconds when changing playback between songs. This has yet to cause any serious issues, but I need to upgrade sooner than later.  :)


Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 15, 2022, 12:59:02 PM
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I retired before I got tired.
I wish... I tried, but about a month later I was so bored I could scream. So I got a job at a Computer Renaissance store as a bench tech. That only lasted for a few months as my body reminded me of why I retired. But then boredom set in again, and that was when I went to work for Rob at the Pit. It was fun at first, but then we started getting these rejects from "Polite Society" that would act all serious and seemingly smart enough to know what they were talking about and their posts did a lot of damage to the computers of unsuspecting people who didn't know what they were doing was trying to intentionally cause problems for them, just to have fun at other people's expense. I've only been around here for a few days, but I've read enough of your posts to seriously doubt you are one of those people. Mainly because it seems you have more brain cells than would fit on a pinhead. :)

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My computer is older than yours and badly in need of an upgrade.
I don't know... I seriously think it all depends on what you do with your computer. If all you do is general netsurfing, maybe watching a YT video or two here and there, then no. I would leave it as is until some part fails, then replace that part. But if you do all that, plus some playing games or doing video production and editing, etc., just about anything with high system requirements, then maybe it is time to upgrade. But I got past that "get a new PC every two years whether I need a new one or not" thing years ago.

However, I am a firm believer in "Bare Bones Upgrades" when the time does come to upgrade. Even this last time when I bought more hardware that I usually do, I still had several core items from previous rigs. The computer I'm using now that was mostly bought in 2016, has an LG monitor I bought in 2008, a Logitech wireless KB and mouse that I bought in 2010, two Western Digital Blue hard drives that I bought in 2012, and my Altec Lansing 5.1 speakers were a Christmas gift from my kids in some time in the mid 1990's. I always think why get rid of something that still works, when it can still do what you need it to do?
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 15, 2022, 02:33:31 PM
... It was fun at first, but then we started getting these rejects from "Polite Society" that would act all serious and seemingly smart enough to know what they were talking about and their posts did a lot of damage to the computers of unsuspecting people who didn't know what they were doing was trying to intentionally cause problems for them, just to have fun at other people's expense.

I will never understand those kind of people. How would they feel if the same thing was done to them? However I believe what goes down comes around, so they will get theirs sooner or later.


.. But I got past that "get a new PC every two years whether I need a new one or not" thing years ago.

We think alike when it comes to computer upgrades. I worked as an enginner and programer, so my job required me to keep up with the current stuff at work. At home, I'm a 'do it yourself' kind of guy and only add parts as needed. I did buy my first home system (back in the eighties) as a bundle deal. It came with more programs than would fit on it's hard drive. So the first thing I did was get a larger drive and a math co-processor (to help speed up the processing of programs that would benefit from it). Since then, I research for the 'best in class' component and buy the closest I can afford. I guess I've been lucky in that I seldom have to upgrade due to hardware failure. It's usually because some program(s) I'm running could benefit from it.

I loved using that first system. But, when I think about it, my current android smart phone is at least 1000 times more powerful and can do things that first system could only dream about.

The last thing I bought for my current system is a SSD to use as my main drive. It only runs at half speed since my motherboard doesn't support SATA 600. It's funny how quickly you get used to something. When I first got it I noticed the speed increase it provides over mechanical drives. Now I want more and am thinking about upgrading my mobo (and cpu and ram with it) to support SATA 600.

I hope you enjoy using WACUP. Dro has more he needs to do, and wants to do, before it can graduate from beta/preview stage.



Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 15, 2022, 08:37:47 PM
I will never understand those kind of people. How would they feel if the same thing was done to them? However I believe what goes down comes around, so they will get theirs sooner or later.
Indeed, neither will I. There was one guy, and I learned the futility of banning people from him, that was posting all manner of destructive garbage so we banned him. He registered again and again, 70 some odd times, but in addition to his previous antics, he took to posting warez links, to all sorts of illegal software, porn, sometimes images into posts, and all sorts of offensive comments. Everything that racist, sexist, other *istic types would love. After all that, I sat down with some friends of mine on another website, that specialized in Invision Power Board mods and we came up with a mod we named "Miserable User". We noticed that he almost always used the same 6 email domains to register emails, all of which were Russian freemail accounts (Yandex, etc.), and that the first two of four sets of numbers in his IP addresses were the same.

I didn't like to block email domains or IP addresses because of the nature of the board, and the potential to block innocent people from registering, but he forced our hand so in his case, I made an exception. Since the IP address ranges were all Russian, I put them into Miserable User. This mod didn't block users, it just "encouraged" them to go somewhere else to play. One page might work normally, where as the next ran at variable speeds between 10% to 50% of normal. And the more pages they visit, the slower things went. The general idea was that eventually they would tire of that, attribute it to server problems, Internet traffic, etc. and move on. We put in fake specific browser type error messages to help the user believe that was the case. It worked like a charm, he was gone in a week or two.

But later we found out from another forum owner that he had been visiting his forum, and had been doing the same things and one of the people on his board was a Police officer, who specialized in cyber crime. Some of the images he had posted were of teenagers engaged in sex, so he tracked the guy down through his work computer and found him in Wisconsin, and contacted the local Police there and had him arrested for posting child porn images on a public forum. So he got what he deserved... And we all cheered at that news.  ;D

We think alike when it comes to computer upgrades. ... I did buy my first home system (back in the eighties) as a bundle deal.

Mine was a rent to own deal. If I had paid it off, it would have been over $2,500. I was working at Lake Powell, at the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area in Arizona and Utah and it was supposedly a temporary rental. But as luck would have it, I got to be pretty good friends with the store owner and he let me take to PC to another marina on the lake, because he had only rented a few times and I paid my rent every month in advance and took good care of the PC. Later when the winter season was over and I returned to Page, Arizona, he made me a better offer to work for him so I took the job. Included in his offer was a new (well, a different one anyway) PC to replace the one I had, and previous payments had paid for it, he said. It actually had cost me about $1,200.

Since then, I research for the 'best in class' component and buy the closest I can afford. I guess I've been lucky in that I seldom have to upgrade due to hardware failure. It's usually because some program(s) I'm running could benefit from it.
The least amount of time I have had a PC was 2 years, the longest was 12.

I loved using that first system. But, when I think about it, my current android smart phone is at least 1000 times more powerful and can do things that first system could only dream about.
The pocket calculator I have now is probably faster than that first PC I had. It was a 286/4Mhz... And I bet as an engineer, you know that the first PC CPU's were based on extended versions of calculator CPU's. :)

It's funny how quickly you get used to something.
Indeed... Back in my band days a friend of mine had a really sweet 1981 Aria Pro II guitar that was made with Claro Walnut and Hard Rock Maple that had a neck through the body design (it was all one piece of laminated maple with two strips of claro walnut, which gives a much warmer tone) that was a guitar that was way out of my price range. His wife got arrested for DUI and he wanted money to bail her out, so he "pawned" the guitar to me for $500, with a contract that if he didn't pay me back in six months the guitar was mine. He never paid me, so I got to keep it.

I loved that guitar, it was a much higher quality of guitar that I had ever had, out shinning Les Pauls and Strats by a long shot. I played it for about 6 years. And then it was stolen. I don't have any photos of it as they were also stolen, but this one is the same model, but made with regular walnut. On mine the claro walnut is much darker, and the front and back were both two piece bookmark style, cut from the same block of wood... It was an absolute beauty.

(https://i.postimg.cc/GmV7jnCv/1981-ap2-fs1000wa-2.png)

So I went back to my old Stratocaster and even though it was much older and a sweet guitar in it's own right, it just wasn't the same. A few years later, after I moved to northern California, I found my Aria in a local guitar shop, on sale for $4,000. I knew it was mine because there were these three little dents in the finish by the controls where my two year old son had dropped my car keys on it. (Lesson learned, never leave the case open when children are nearby!) IF I had filed a police report when it was stolen, with the serial number of the guitar and all that, I might have been able to get it back. But I didn't. We filed a report for our equipment truck and contents, with descriptions of what was in it, as that was all that was required for our insurance company. But I didn't know the serial number of the guitar as I never thought to write it down anywhere. Plus, since I had collected insurance for it already, the local police said I did not have a case to claim the guitar. At least the store owner was nice enough to pull it off the rack until I talked to the police, he did not have to do that. But I did not have $4,000 so... :(

I hope you enjoy using WACUP. Dro has more he needs to do, and wants to do, before it can graduate from beta/preview stage.
I'm quite happy with WACUP, and Dro's previous Winamp add-on, the Album Art window. And I like this forum too. Lots of good information on here... :)

For my purposes, the only thing I would like to see changed is when I open a playlist, the Playlist Editor window moves. And that is most likely already fixed if I had to guess about it... It's also barely worth mentioning too, since all you ha to do is move it back where it was.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 16, 2022, 03:47:16 AM
...

For my purposes, the only thing I would like to see changed is when I open a playlist, the Playlist Editor window moves. And that is most likely already fixed if I had to guess about it... It's also barely worth mentioning too, since all you ha to do is move it back where it was.

I assume you're talking about the window moving when clicking on it with your mouse. I've not seen it move on it's own when changing the listed playlist. I'm not as steady using my mouse as I once was, so I sometimes activate a click & drag movement when I don't mean too. To help prevent this, I'm learning the keyboard shortcuts for things I do often.

WACUP (like Winamp) is loaded with context menus. Right-click on anything and everything, and a context menu is likely to pop up. These menus list the keyboard shortcut next to the commands that have them.

You can also create custom shortcuts if you have enabled the Global Hotkeys (gen_hotkeys.dll) plug-in. If you did a full install then go to the Preferences - Plug-ins - General Purpose tab to enable this plug-in. If it is not there then run the installer again to add it. Once Global Hotkeys is enabled then go to the Preferences - General - Global Hotkeys tab to view the current shortcuts, modify them, and/or create new ones. You may need to restart WACUP for this tab to appear, I don't remember if this is necessary or not.

I think I read somewhere that dro was thinking about adding an option to lock down the selected classic skin windows arrangement to prevent accidental movement of classic skin window locations. Since all classic skins use the same windows arrangement this should be relatively simple to implement. I mostly use modern skins, but that would be a welcome option for older users of classic skins.


Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 16, 2022, 06:07:26 AM
I assume you're talking about the window moving when clicking on it with your mouse. I've not seen it move on it's own when changing the listed playlist.
No, it moves when I open a new playlist...

(https://i.postimg.cc/mgB3FKw2/wacup-playlist.png)

But it's more of an annoyance than anything. It's just a simple matter of moving it back where it belongs, which only takes one click and one second, so it isn't a really big deal. It just that it does that every time I want to open a new playlist that makes it annoying. I also thought if it isn't just something about my computer (which is always a possibility, I had this PC for two years before I realized that I had somehow turned off Windows Updates) and it happens to everyone, but nobody ever mentioned it and dro doesn't know about it he might want to fix it. If he happens to be a Capricorny perfectionist like I am... (https://s19.postimg.cc/4kf6fpjub/rofl3.gif)

On the other hand, he may have already fixed it in a later build. I'm running the preview build and I assume there have been beta builds since that was released.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 16, 2022, 07:32:44 AM
Ok, I understand now.

As a beta tester, I try to keep up with posted issues for the betas and skim those posted for the current preview. I have not read about this issue, but I could have missed it.

I had an issue when first opening a classic skin media library window in a new session. It would open partly off screen in the top left hand corner. After dragging it back, it would keep it's placement when closing and re-opening during the session. That was fixed a few betas ago. The reason for your issue may be similar to what was causing that one.

The current preview will soon be a year old and dro regrets that a new one hasn't been released. Expected release dates are not announced, but I expect a new one in the next 2 to 3 months. So far, the longest interval between betas has been 6 months. Several things reported in the current preview have been fixed or improved in the current beta. Unfortunately, new beta testers are currently not being accepted because too many selfish a__holes or deliberate trouble makers have abused the privilege, forcing dro to waste time dealing with nonsense.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 16, 2022, 11:14:07 AM
Yeah... Those deliberate trouble makers caused my old boss at the Pit to have to replace a couple of PCs. Some of the "advice" they gave people was quite destructive at times. To add to that, some of the people in the US Congress at the time might fit that description as well. The two owners of PC Pitstop testified before Congress about Spyware, in an attempt to get them to do something about it, but the stupid Cons refused to back any legislation, so nothing came of it. What a waste...

Anyway, getting back to WACUP... I just made a discovery on my PC that solved a 7 year old problem. When I set this PC up one thing I was a little dissapointed in was that the left channels of the of speaker system was weak, and I had to compensate for that by moving the balance to about 20%-25% left / 75%-80% right. That was the only way I could get the sound to be about even on all channels. After 7 years, I was pretty much used to it.

Tonight, I was looking for the setting to control the bass output, and noticed that instead of the 5.1 surround sound speaker configuration, it was set to plain old 2 channel stereo. I was listening to Pink Floyd's 2019 remix of the Delicate Sound Of Thunder DVD at the time, and when I changed it to 5.1 it was like my speaker system suddenly came to life, as if I went from sitting in front of my PC to front row center at the concert. Wow... What a difference! And to think that I opened that program to turn up the bass, and I ended turning it down. (https://s19.postimg.cc/4rujnhdwz/thumbsup.gif)
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 18, 2022, 03:56:32 AM
...

Tonight, I was looking for the setting to control the bass output, and noticed that instead of the 5.1 surround sound speaker configuration, it was set to plain old 2 channel stereo. I was listening to Pink Floyd's 2019 remix of the Delicate Sound Of Thunder DVD at the time, and when I changed it to 5.1 it was like my speaker system suddenly came to life, as if I went from sitting in front of my PC to front row center at the concert. Wow... What a difference! And to think that I opened that program to turn up the bass, and I ended turning it down. (https://s19.postimg.cc/4rujnhdwz/thumbsup.gif)

I don't think you would have failed to notice the lack of sound from some of your speakers. So I'm thinking your speaker system sounding different (better), when (WACUP/Windows/speaker system ?) switched from stereo to 5.1 mode, is either because your Pink Floyd file is encoded with 5.1 sound or your speaker system is able to run in a pseudo 5.1 mode.

I use an output plug-in that upmixes the output of all my stereo files to pseudo 5.1 outputs, so that 6 customizable output channels are sent to my speaker system instead of the files' native stereo channels. I'm looking for a plug-in that would upmix to 8 customizable output channels, then I can upgrade to a 7.1 speaker system.   ;D

As for bass controls, they are too in-discriminant imo. This is why I use a DSP plug-in instead of the default equalizer or the bass and treble controls (in skins that have them). As you know, bass and treble controls allow the output level increase or decrease of all frequencies below or above a certain mid-range frequency. The default equalizer allows for control of 10 groups (bands) of frequencies spread across the entire frequency range. DSPs allow for much more fine tuning of the frequencies needed to be enhanced or reduced.


Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 19, 2022, 09:42:35 PM
I don't think you would have failed to notice the lack of sound from some of your speakers. So I'm thinking your speaker system sounding different (better), when (WACUP/Windows/speaker system ?) switched from stereo to 5.1 mode, is either because your Pink Floyd file is encoded with 5.1 sound or your speaker system is able to run in a pseudo 5.1 mode.
I think you're right. The Delicate Sound Of Thunder DVD is 5.1, and my MP3's are not, yet they too sound better now. Not quite 5.1, but fuller than stereo. I like it.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 19, 2022, 11:21:20 PM
I'm not an audiophile, looking for bit perfect reproduction of my digital music files. I like to play at sound engineering in this digital age. Trying to get the playback of my recorded music to sound as good (to me) as I can has been a decades long habit, from back in the analog days.

While nothing can be added to a digital file (during playback) that is not already in it, there are several ways to bring out what is there for the best sound possible.

As a musician, you most likely have an approach to making music sound good that differs from mine. As an engineer, I take a technical approach. This is why I loved Winamp and now WACUP because of all the plug-ins available that let me tinker to my heart's content. Of course what sounds good is very subjective and a major point of Winamp/WACUP is letting each person get their music to sound good to them.

Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 20, 2022, 09:29:54 PM
While nothing can be added to a digital file (during playback) that is not already in it, there are several ways to bring out what is there for the best sound possible.
But you can add something to a file that was not already in it before you play it. There are some great recording and mixing programs, many of them free, that can do that.

For basic stereo, I use a program called Acoustica MP3 Audio Mixer (https://acoustica.com/legacy). I call it a poor man's Mixing Board. You can record your own albums with it. Even though it has "mp3" in the name, you can use .wav files too. It used to be $25, but it's free now. It has seemingly unlimited channels, but I would recommend not over doing it based on how much memory your system has. Mine only has 8Gb and I've done 20 before, and it didn't even flinch. Sadly, it is not capable of doing a 5.1 or 7.1 mix. For that you would need something with a little more cojones, and even some of those programs are free. Audacity (https://www.audacityteam.org/) for example, can do a 5.1 mix. Unfortunately there are no audio samples included with free software, but you can find plenty of things to sample on the Internet. A friend of mine challenged me to make a studio recording sound like a live album, and that was easy. I used crowd noise from a Grateful Dead concert to sample the crowd, and added it as a backing track to a studio album.

Here's a Manual (https://acoustica.com/assets/products/mp3-audio-mixer/acoustica-mp3-audio-mixer-manual.pdf) for Acoustica MP3 Audio Mixer if you want to give it a try. You'll probably only look at this file once, maybe twice. After that you won't need it anymore. Audacity, on the other hand is a lot more complicated.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 20, 2022, 10:36:05 PM
Sorry to have taken your thread so far off topic. It appeared that your main issue was resolved, as much as possible. So back in reply #8, I was mainly wanting to welcome you to the forum.  :)

We can continue these discussions in a new thread or via PM, if you want.

I have ripped a lot of my mp3s from CDs (and a few from LPs) and I have also downloaded quite a few. I've also gotten some from an online service that extracts audio from YouTube videos. I would like to pick your brain about your experience with the recording, mixing and other sound related apps you're familiar with.

I'm familiar with Audacity. It is complicated. I have been using mp3DirectCut for awhile to remove excessive silence at the start and/or end of some of my downloaded mp3s. It also lets me fade out the ending of some of them that ended without a fade out or instrumental tracks that ended abruptly. It does all this without having to re-encode the files.

I have also been using mp3Gain to level the output of my mp3s so that some would not sound much louder than others, forcing me to reach for my volume control. It changes a value in the file header that affects the output level, so that the file doesn't need to be re-encoded. I don't like using the Replay Gain feature in Winamp/WACUP.

Now that drive storage space is so plentiful and cheap, I'll been trying encoding wav rips in different loss-less file formats (mostly flac and wavpack). I can't hear a difference between flac and wavpack. Flac is much more widely supported, but wavpack uses the same tagging scheme as mp3s.


Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 21, 2022, 01:55:45 AM
Sorry to have taken your thread so far off topic. It appeared that your main issue was resolved, as much as possible. So back in reply #8, I was mainly wanting to welcome you to the forum.  :)
I'm not too worried about that. It was resolved. The moment I opened WACUP. :)

Besides, the description of this particular section of the forum is "Feel free to talk about anything and everything in this board." I thus felt free to yak. Of all the things I have done in my 66 years of life, that is one thing I am an expert at doing.

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We can continue these discussions in a new thread or via PM, if you want.
We can do PM's if you like, but like I said before, the description says "Feel free" so I do.

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I have ripped a lot of my mp3s from CDs (and a few from LPs) and I have also downloaded quite a few. I've also gotten some from an online service that extracts audio from YouTube videos.

I still use CDex 1.51 (https://cdex.mu/download) for CD rips (I've had it for many years), and for YouTube videos, I usually download the video first, using youtube-dl-gui (https://www.videohelp.com/software/youtube-dl-gui), then extract the mp3 using Pazera MP4 Audio Extractor (https://www.pazera-software.com/products/audio-extractor/). Both freeware.

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I would like to pick your brain about your experience with the recording, mixing and other sound related apps you're familiar with.
Pick away, my friend.

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I'm familiar with Audacity. It is complicated.

Yeah, too complicated for my taste. I like simple...

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I have been using mp3DirectCut...
I never heard of that one, so I looked it up. I have to admit what I found made me snicker. Whackypedia says "mp3DirectCut is a lossless editor for MP3 (and to a degree, MP2 and AAC) audio files...", and I thought to myself "Hmmm, a lossless program to edit a lossy audio format." But I'll have to check it out anyway. Because while I know there are lossless formats that work great, MP3's are everywhere. My car came with an MP3 player built into the dashboard. If all I had was .FLAC or .OGG files, I would be stuck listening to the radio. And radio sucks around here...

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I have also been using mp3Gain to level the output of my mp3s so that some would not sound much louder than others, forcing me to reach for my volume control.
An invaluable tool. I actually have used that program more than most of the ones I have for MP3s. Because no matter how I record or process an MP3 file, that program matches the volume with all the others. I think FFMpeg will do it too, but I'm not sure. But I've been using mp3Gain for long enough that I always use it for that purpose now.

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I can't hear a difference between flac and wavpack.
That's where I sit right now, but with my hearing I can't hear a difference between flac and and mp3. So I'm not going to re-do my CD library again... It takes far too long.


Edit: By the way, I was curious about those Logitech speakers you have so I looked them up too. Even as the long time fan of Logitech products that I am, I was impressed. Wow... Those out do my 60w Altec Lansing 251s by a long shot!
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 21, 2022, 03:24:53 AM
Ok, I have no problem continuing our discussions here. Those looking for the thread topic will soon see that that discussion ended rather quickly. I will be 71 the end of next month. I'm beginning to understand that with all I have learned and think I know, there is more for me to learn.

I have been using 'Exact Audio Copy' for at least the last 10 years for ripping my CDs. It is not as fast as other apps but has never failed to provide me with excellent wav rips. It supports various encoder add-ons and can convert the wav to the desired format seamlessly.

I will try your method of getting audio from YouTube videos. It is probably just as fast as what I'm doing, but may provide some control over the mp3 bitrate, frequency and mode.

Sometimes the mp3s I download have structural errors. I use various utilities to fix them when possible; 'MP3 Diags' most often. It has a stable and unstable version, neither one has been updated in some time. I use the unstable version and it has yet to destroy a file.

As you know sounds are just vibrations at different frequencies and music is felt as well as heard. Accordingly I have never been completely happy with lossy formats. The idea of stripping out the frequencies that most people can't hear also removes some of the nuances. However the trade off of removing the artifacts introduced by the analog playback devices and media back in the day versus the pitfalls we have now is acceptable to me.

I mostly listen to digital recordings of music now anyway. I stopped going to most live concerts many years ago when crowds started to panic for whatever reason and trample people (causing serious injury and sometimes death). It's crazy, no way people can't tell when they are stepping on other people. I went to Woodstock when I was 18 and people went out of their way to help each other back then.

It has taken me years to acquire, fix or replace, and tag the over 6600 mp3s in my small collection. Like you, I'm not going to try to replace them all with a lossless format.

I'm also a long time Logitech fan. My speaker system is very nice, but the previous model, also THX Sound certified, was better (bigger sub and more wattage in each speaker). When something failed in that system, I was bummed that I couldn't replace it because it was discontinued. However this system is a lot more affordable than the other one was.





Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 21, 2022, 06:31:14 AM
I forgot to respond to your car radio comment.

My car sound system only supports AM/FM radio with a single CD player in the dash and a 6 CD player in the trunk. I bought a very affordable receiver-transmitter gadget that gets audio from the digital music player on my smart phone via Bluetooth and transmits it through selectable FM frequencies. All you have to do is plug it into a cigarette lighter port, find a FM channel that is not being used in your area and tune the receiver-transmitter to it. Voila, you have your own commercial free radio station.

There are several of these receiver-transmitter gadgets available. The one I got provides very good sound quality and buttons that let me control the playback of the player on my phone. It also has a small display that shows the selected FM channel and the song title and artist name, if the song file contains these tags.

This thing also has a USB port so I can keep my phone charged.


Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 21, 2022, 11:02:37 AM
As you know sounds are just vibrations at different frequencies and music is felt as well as heard. Accordingly I have never been completely happy with lossy formats.
For me, I make a comparison like the guy I learned about computers from. When I asked him what I should buy when I was going to get my first one, he said something to the effect of "If you go to a computer store you will see that they have aisle after aisle of IBM PC clones and parts (sound boards, video boards, etc.) and you can either buy a lesser quality factory made PC that you can do just about anything with, and then they have one or two racks of Macintosh computers and Macintosh stuff, that you basically can do a limited array of things with, they're great machines, but essentially they are work computers. PCs have tons of many types of software (even in 1988, when he told me all this) and Macs only have a few productivity software titles. So what you want depends on what you want to do with your computer. If you want to do more than work with it (such as after work, him and I occasionally played a game called 'Tank', an early version of 'Scorched Earth' for a few hours) then you want a PC." So I bought a PC. When Napster came along and I first heard of mp3s, I started downloading them and I downloaded Winamp to play them on. I later learned of lossless formats, but like I said earlier, MP3's are everywhere where as the others are not. If my car and portable mp3 players could play flac files, and their drives were larger, I would consider re-ripping my 1,400 CDs.

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I mostly listen to digital recordings of music now anyway.

I've been doing that since CD's first came out. A good example of why would be an album called At Fillmore East by the Allman Brothers Band. Because my Father took me to one of the many shows at the Fillmore East Auditorium in New York City in 1971, I have always loved that album, because it was one of my first blues rock concerts. When all I could get were vinyl records, I would wear them out and have to buy another copy every year or so. I must have bought at least a dozen copies of it. But I still have the CD of that album that I bought in the early 1990s and have never had to buy another one after that, except for The Fillmore Concerts box set that came out years later, which had 5 shows from 3 different days over 6 CDs. The At Fillmore East album has the best tracks from all of them, mostly unedited. I would have liked it better if they had not edited them at all. But you know how record companies are, specially back in the early 1970s...

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It's crazy, no way people can't tell when they are stepping on other people.

Actually, there are several ways. They're drunk, stoned or on some seriously whacky drugs. Also, you have to remember, people who are trampled to death at concerts are not trampled by one or two people who are intoxicated in some way or another but by hundreds to thousands of intoxicated people.

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I went to Woodstock when I was 18 and people went out of their way to help each other back then.
I was only 13 in 1969 and my parents refused to let me leave our corn field home in Illinoizz. But four years later when I was 17 I went to Summer Jam at Watkins Glen, New York with the Allman Brothers Band, The Grateful Dead and The Band. The music was great, specially the nearly concert length sound check by all three bands the day before the show was supposed to be on, but the lack of food, water, medical facilities and restrooms for a show that had 600,000 people instead of 150,000 it was planned to have. That show was 66666% larger than my little wide spot in the road home town of 900 in Illinoizz. And I have never been to a large concert since.

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It has taken me years to acquire, fix or replace, and tag the over 6600 mp3s in my small collection.
I don't know how many individual mp3 songs I have, because I rip CDs and or record my music by the album, and I have almost the full catalog of albums for all of the bands I listen to. As it stands now, Windows says I have 2,827 in my mp3/bands folder on my hard drive, and I have about 1,500 CDs. Because of the old Winamp limitation on time displayed on the Playlist window, I always limited my mp3 files to 99 minutes, thus a lot of my longer albums were split up similar to CD contents. (Thank You, DrO for fixing that in WACUP!) A lot of my mp3 albums came from my DVD collection (copied with Tipard DVD to MP3 Converter (https://www.tipard.com/dvd-to-mp3-converter.html)), such as I made mp3s for all of my concert films, and I also recorded or downloaded some of them from Tidal, Spotify and or bootleg websites. I only keep high quality bootlegs that are soundboard recordings. Like you said, I am not an audiophile, but I know bad recordings when I hear them.

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I'm also a long time Logitech fan.
I could probably be called a "Super Fan"... (https://s19.postimg.cc/4kf6fpjub/rofl3.gif)

I have a Logitech wireless K520 Keyboard / M705 Mouse combo that I wore the mouse out and replaced it with an M720 Mouse, a J-UJ18 Wired Attack 3 11 Button Programmable Joystick, a G-UF13A Wired Dual Action 10 Button Programmable Game Pad, a G13 25 Button Programmable Game Board and a 16 Button Programmable G27 Racing Wheel. My laptop has a M720 Mouse, 4 port USB 3.0 hub, and a F710 wireless Gamepad. My girlfriend's computer has a lot of the same stuff as mine, as does her son. (No steering wheel, as I'm the only one who plays Euro Truck Simulator 2.) Between those 4 computers we have about 20 different Logitech products. In fact, the only "other" peripheral component of my computer is my Altec Lansing speakers. But you know how it is. My kids bought them, and they didn't know any better...
 
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When something failed in that system, I was bummed that I couldn't replace it because it was discontinued. However this system is a lot more affordable than the other one was.
I hope you didn't toss those speakers... I have an old Stereo system that has two Pioneer speakers that have 12" woofers and a 2" horn, and they sound fabulous. (For stereo, anyway.) I bought them at a yard sale for $20

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There are several of these receiver-transmitter gadgets available.
I used to have one of those. Every time I drove under a power line, it would cut out. Damn thing made me so mad one day I threw it out the window. Then of course, Mr Green started yelling in my head to go back and pick it up, so I did. It had been ran over a couple of times, so I recycled it.

If I wanted to get my mp3 player to connect to the car (before this one, which has an input jack for that purpose) I would use one of those cassette adapters that lets you connect to a headphone output.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 22, 2022, 05:57:08 AM
Actually, there are several ways. They're drunk, stoned or on some seriously whacky drugs. Also, you have to remember, people who are trampled to death at concerts are not trampled by one or two people ...

That is my point, it takes more than a few to trample someone to the point of serious injury or death. Being intoxicated is part of the live concert experience. Being intoxicated contributes but doesn't excuse this mob behavior in my mind. Have you ever witnessed this (maybe not, this wasn't happening in 1971)? I have seen this more than once. After the first person steps on someone, those following behind continue stepping on whoever went down as if they don't care. I've seen people glance down to see what they stepped on and then just keep going. I've almost fought people (probably because I was intoxicated) to keep them from stepping on someone. Anyway, different people see things differently. I will never be able to see this behavior as anything but crazy.


I don't know how many individual mp3 songs I have, because I rip CDs and or record my music by the album ...

I almost never like all the songs on an album. Before drives got bigger and cheaper, I also figured why waste storage space on songs I don't really like just to have all the songs on an album. Beyond that, my collection includes songs (ripped from analog sources; remember 45s) from as far back as the 1930's, several of these songs never were released on an album.


I hope you didn't toss those speakers...

The good thing about a high power system is it can produce good, clear sound at low volume and when I cranked that system up, it would literally rattle the windows in the house with no distortion. It started randomly switching between 5.1 and 4.1 output. The sub and center channel always worked, but the left or right, front or rear channel would drop out. A friend said he didn't mind the glitch, so I gave it to him.
 

I used to have one of those. Every time I drove under a power line, it would cut out. ...

I've always lived in or near large cities. There has always been several acceptable radio stations to listen to. In the past when I wanted to listen to my own music choices, mainly to avoid commercials, I put my portable player of the moment and portable speakers in the back seat. The downside of that was having to keep extra batteries on hand, carry a lot of media around, and switching cassettes or CDs when stopped at a traffic light.

I moved to Glendale, AZ (literally next door to Phoenix) 4 years ago, most of the power lines run underground. I got my first smart phone then to help me navigate until I learned my way around. It's a Tracfone (old Samsung model that cost less than $100) and the service plan I have is about $15 a month. When I saw the phone had a digital music player app, I removed it and installed a better one. Then I added extra storage memory and loaded several hundred mp3s. At first I paired the phone with portable rechargeable Bluetooth speakers (old habits die hard). A little over a year ago, I decided to try pairing the phone to my car's sound system and got the receiver-transmitter gadget. So far I like it. I do get short periods of static from time to time.



Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 22, 2022, 11:46:53 AM
Being intoxicated contributes but doesn't excuse this mob behavior in my mind. Have you ever witnessed this (maybe not, this wasn't happening in 1971)?
After playing in bars and casinos for 25 years and hotel lobbies and lounges before that as half of a classical guitar / grand piano duo, I absolutely hate drunks. Being drunk is not an excuse, but it is a valid reason for why people do what they do. In my opinion, "Intoxicated" is just another word for "Incapacitated", and I wish the people who make laws in this country (and the world for that matter) would take that into account when they write new laws, specially those that pertain to when someone who is drunk, stoned or worse kills someone because of their careless life choices.

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I almost never like all the songs on an album. Before drives got bigger and cheaper, I also figured why waste storage space on songs I don't really like just to have all the songs on an album.
If I don't want to hear songs, I cut them out of my recordings. Or if I don't like all of a song, such as the Allman Brothers Band have always had long boring drum solos in the middle of some of their more lengthy jams, so I just shorten them a bit. In my usual manner of trying very hard to make it nearly impossible to tell that I did it.

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A friend said he didn't mind the glitch, so I gave it to him.
Oh yeah... I like that. I'm a firm believer in Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Freecycle. (https://s19.postimg.cc/4rujnhdwz/thumbsup.gif)
 
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I moved to Glendale, AZ (literally next door to Phoenix) 4 years ago...
That's very close to my old stompin' grounds. I lived in Flagstaff for a few years, back in the 1990s. I've always loved Arizona. (Except for the political games they play, but I don't care much for that anywhere.)

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When I saw the phone had a digital music player app, I removed it and installed a better one. Then I added extra storage memory and loaded several hundred mp3s.
Several years ago I bought a Sandisk MP3 Player and I loved that little thing. I bought a 32gig flash drive and loaded it up with my MP3s and every day I would listen to it while riding my bicycle. After about 3 years or so, almost to the day after the extended warranty expired, you know how that goes I'm sure, it started acting up. I would choose an album to listen to, put the player in a buttbag and strap it on, put all my outdoor gear on, put my helmet on and head off. I would get about two miles down the road and it would randomly switch to another album. 10 minutes or so later it would do it again. I never got past the first 15 minutes of any album with it again. So I reverted back to this cheap one called Lyric that I had bought at FYE for $2 out of the clearance bin. After I tried it and it worked well, I thought since they had a bunch of them I would go back and buy a few for backups. By the time I got back to the store they had five left, so I bought them all. It's been 15 years since I bought them, and the original one still works. I gave one to each of my three kids and the other two are still in the original packages. They only have 1Gb drives in them, but they run for days on one AAA battery. In mine I use a pair of rechargeables and run one until it dies, and change it to the other one, and throw the dead one in the charger after my ride and it's always ready to use again in about an hour.

(https://i.postimg.cc/vBKPZJxv/lyric-mp3-player-tmb.jpg) (https://i.postimg.cc/nrQ3j3vf/lyric-mp3-player.jpg)

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A little over a year ago, I decided to try pairing the phone to my car's sound system...
I did that too. But my car's system only allows hands free calling, and it actually doesn't even do that all that well. To make a call, you have to activate the phone system (and the phone must be ready), then you say "Call ____" and it will say "Mobile, is that correct?" (as if there's a landline option or something, which of course there isn't in a car), you have to say yes, and it makes the call. And the stupid thing doesn't seem to be able to tell that two listings with the same phone number are duplicates. My girlfriend put our home phone number in twice by mistake, and when we want to call home, it will say "Say 1 for Home, or 2 for Home." And it only does that about half the time. What a poorly written program...

It won't play mp3s through that cable though. So I got a two headed headphone cable and plug it into the stereo's input and it plays from the Lyric mp3 player or my phone, and that works like a charm. (In 2.1 stereo.) In fact, that stereo system is one of the few things about this car we bought new that I actually like. It has a DVD player with two screens too. We can play it on the back seats and entertain the kids while traveling cross country. That would have been so good when they were little many moons ago....
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on February 23, 2022, 03:31:21 AM
...
After about 3 years or so, almost to the day after the extended warranty expired, you know how that goes I'm sure, it started acting up. ...

As the US economy moved from a manufacturing base to a consumer base, more and more products were deliberately designed to fail in 1 to 3 years. I'm not proud to admit I took part in this in the beginning.

Remember the arcade game era. Williams (one of the big game machine companies at the time) asked the company I was working for to design a joystick that would wear out and break faster than it needed to. It was a tricky task because the joystick had to appear to wear out gradually and not snap too soon. Williams made more on maintenance calls than on the sale of machines. Williams' customers never caught on, thinking their patrons (mostly kids and teens) were just being too rough with the machines.

My company was contracted to do many similar jobs. Now a days very little is designed to last as long as it otherwise could. Also, too many products are designed to be replaced instead of repaired.


...
So I got a two headed headphone cable and plug it into the stereo's input and it plays from the Lyric mp3 player or my phone, and that works like a charm. ...

Nothing beats a good headset, imo. I'm afraid to use them while driving. I want to be able to hear the ambient sounds around me, such as approaching emergency vehicles before they get close and etc.



Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on February 23, 2022, 07:31:39 AM
I'm not proud to admit I took part in this in the beginning.
Why? It's kind of expected that you do the job you were hired to do.

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Remember the arcade game era.
Sure... Specially since it isn't quite over yet. At least not here, anyway. There is an arcade at the mall, about 15 miles from where I live. And every time I went to that mall prior to the pandemic it was always very busy. I would assume it's either shut down now or has a lot fewer patrons since the pandemic came along. A lot of the stores in the mall are history now.

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Williams made more on maintenance calls than on the sale of machines.

Typical business model for the 21st Century.

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Williams' customers never caught on, thinking their patrons (mostly kids and teens) were just being too rough with the machines.
Now a days very little is designed to last as long as it otherwise could. Also, too many products are designed to be replaced instead of repaired.
Even if they did catch on, and I would bet more than a few would have, what could they do about it? That's they way it's been for the last 4 or 5 decades. That's why I like old stuff, made back in the days when things were built to last. My 2016 Dodge Grand Caravan that I spent $37,000 plus interest on is a piece of junk. I wish we had bought the Kia we looked at. It was only $3,000 more than the Dodge and it was a much better van.

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Nothing beats a good headset, imo. I'm afraid to use them while driving.
I wouldn't even consider doing that here. California has some mighty expensive tickets for stuff like that. Not to mention, some crazy ideas... Did you know that California considers bicycles to be motor vehicles, even though they usually have no motors? I found this out by accident late one night when I was out on my daily ride. Since 2006, almost every day until about 5 years ago or so I would go on a two hour ride. I preferred mornings, but if something prevented me from doing that I would go at night.

One night I left my house at about midnight and rode into town and followed my usual 12 mile loop around the outskirts of town. About 1:00 AM I came across a city cop stopped at a stop sign, but standing next to his car. As I stopped for the stop sign he said hello so I started talking to him. We had a 45 minute conversation, during which the subject of why he was standing there, he was watching a known drug house. I told him that was why I preferred to live out in the county instead of in town. Too damn many tweakers. Out where I live there are a lot of deer, an occasional elk, less frequently a bear or two, the only thieves we have are raccoons, but NO tweakers. He said he was looking for a house in the county himself so I told him about the realtor I rent from. One thing we talked about was my headphones, he said it was illegal to wear headphones while driving.

They are the neckband over the ears type, very light weight, and at the time I could get them at CVS for about $15 a pair.
(https://i.postimg.cc/Jhj4HNpk/philips-shs5200-neckband-headphones.jpg)

I told him "We've been standing here talking for almost an hour, did I miss any part of the conversation?" He said no. "Here's why..." I took them off and handed them to him, he put them on for a second, then laughed and took them off and handed them back to me. I said something to the effect of "I mostly wear them to keep dirt and such from getting in my ears, and that is the volume I always have them set at, even in the daytime when the noise level is a lot louder. Plus my mp3 player has a pass-through option that I keep on, so the small microphone on it picks up sound around me and I hear it with my music."

He decided not to write me a ticket. But if he had, it would have cost me a lot of money. The fine for the first offense is $100, the second is $250, and if you get a third it's $500 and 5 days in the county Grey Bar Inn. And that's just for the city ordinance, the state law fine is $197 and a point on your drivers license. If you get more tickets, the fine stays the same (I think, don't hold me to that), but as usual, if you accumulate too many points in a specific amount of time (4 points in 2 years, 6 in 2 or 8 in 3), DMV can suspend your driver's license for 6 months or revoke it if you are in an accident where someone gets injured or killed.

However, there are exemptions. One I could qualify for is if you are using a hearing aid, and the pass-through option on my mp3 player might pass muster on that. On the other hand, the law is specific on it being illegal to cover both ears. If one ear is not covered, that's a legal defense. So whenever I see a cop while riding with headphones on, I quickly uncover one ear just in case I get stopped for whatever reason. In my opinion, the law should be even more specific and state that low volumes are acceptable, specially from non-noise cancelling headphones and noise cancelling headphones should be specified as always being illegal, even when not producing any sound. Because if the whole idea is to not prevent you from hearing what's happening around you, it seems to me that banning noise cancelling headphones while driving should be a no brainer.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on March 14, 2022, 04:29:34 AM
Hi Axel,

I hope you are in good health.

I've been trying to figure out your method of extracting mp3s from YouTube videos. The overall process works, but it is taking a long time to download a video. I'm using youtube-dl-gui v2.3 with youtube-dl v2021.12.17.0 and must be doing something wrong. What settings do you use with youtube-dl-gui?


Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on April 08, 2022, 09:28:18 PM
I'm sorry I missed this post. I've been a little (well, actually a lot) distracted by a series of family health problems. My daughter fell and smacked her head pretty hard and lost a lot of her memory, my oldest son who is a Colonel in the Army had a heart attack and I have been having kidney problems. It's been a stressful month. I'm not used to that, as I have had almost no stress for almost 26 years since I retired.

Anyway, to extract audio from an .mp4, which is the video format I prefer (although I do have a number of .mkv files), I use a program called Pazera Audio Extractor (https://www.videohelp.com/software/Pazera-Free-Audio-Extractor). The version I have is 2.4, but the download linked to from that page is for 2.11. I don't remember where I got 2.4 (https://www.mediafire.com/file/sduqrk5uqv0zaf3/Pazera_Free_Audio_Extractor_64bit_PORTABLE.zip/file), but there's a link to my file (on my MediaFire account) if you want to grab it instead. I've been using that version for several years with no problems at all. It works great.

I use youtube-dl and youtube-dl-gui, as well as yt-dlp (https://www.videohelp.com/software/yt-dlp), all of which work well for downloading movies and TV shows, but I've never tried to use them for audio only so I have no experience there. By the way, the forum that those links are on is a great source of software for video (and some audio), but I'll warn you, the people there are a bit stuck up. Typical know it all types that don't know as much as they think they do...

For YouTube though, you're absolutely right... Oddly enough, youtube-dl-gui is dreadfully slow, so I use a program called 3D YouTube Downloader (https://www.videohelp.com/software/3D-Youtube-Downloader). It downloaded a 2 Gb file pretty quickly, even on my lightning fast (extreme sarcasm) 6 Mbps Internet connection. That might be changing soon though. I got a little ticked off at Suddenlink, my cable TV company, because they raised my bill 38%. I called them and said I was going to cancel my account if they didn't make me a better deal. So instead of cable TV that is 80% unused because never watch most of the channels, they switched me to 500 Mbps Internet with basic cable (50 channels), but I think I am going to be dropping that part of it, because everything I've been paying $100 a month for I can get through streaming for less than $20 a month. But because Suddenlink has proven themselves to be untrustworthy, I might be cancelling the whole thing. We've been streaming with AT&T at 6 Mbps and it works fine. No buffering to speak of, unless I am downloading something big at the same time.
Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Aminifu on April 09, 2022, 04:23:13 AM
You certainly have a lot to deal with all at once. Real life has to take priority over a software app. However, listening to some of your favorite tunes hopefully helps ease the pain. I pray you and your family get better quickly.

I will give 3D YouTube Downloader a try.

We switched from cable to Direct TV years ago. It has gotten just as bad as cable. Overpriced and filled with content you don't want to watch. I've been experimenting with various streaming services for the past few months. I been wanting to drop Direct TV every since AT&T bought it, but I will miss the sports content, some of which is exclusive.

I'm jealous of your 500 Mbps Internet. I have 300 down and 11 up. I sometimes get some buffering at the start of streaming content but almost never once a movie or tv show episode has started.

Title: Re: Editing a Winamp Skin so that all Windows are Double Sized
Post by: Axel Slingerland on April 09, 2022, 10:34:44 PM
Well, it was pretty stressful. But my daughter is in good hands, for living in what I consider to be Hell, California. Also known as Bakersfield. All I can say about it is there is absolutely no freekin' way I ever want to go there again. I honestly don't see any merit in living there. But she likes it there, so if that is where she wants to life, she is entitled to do it. I call her my baby girl, but I've been doing that for 35 years. Her memory is starting to come back, fortunately. Her Doctor said that the memory loss was from very low magnesium levels. I wasn't surprised to hear that. Fortunately she remembered enough to hand him her phone and tell her Doctor "Mom. Press hold 5." And he understood and called us. We drove down there a couple of years ago and it took us 12 hours of driving at our usual speed. That day we got there in 9 hours.

I have a friend who's magnesium levels went off and she was definitely not herself for awhile. She was repeating things she heard, over and over. She was in the hospital and while her husband was waiting to talk to the Doctor, she was laying in bed watching TV. One of the actors on whatever show she was watching was a kid, and this woman came in wearing a Halloween costume, and after playing the kid for a few minutes the kid says "I know who you are, you're Grandma!"

The Doctor comes in and her husband was relieved that it was one he knew, and when the Doctor introduced himself, her husband said "I know who you are." She heard that and said "I know who you are, you're Grandma!" They all laughed but it really wasn't funny. But they gave her magnesium through her IV and she was back to semi-normal in a few hours.

What scared the stuffin' out of me when they said that was what caused my daughter's memory loss, was that the same thing could happen to me at the moment. I've been having kidney problems and I am a type 2 diabetic, and I am a high risk for losing too much magnesium in the same way, with the same end results. I mentioned that to her Doctor, and he told me to take some magnesium supplements for awhile.

On a slightly brighter subject, I'm still not sure about Suddenlink and their so called 500 Mbps Internet. At best, all I really want is faster downloading. One of the guys at the video help forum told me he has 300 Mbps and can download a 2 Gb file in a couple of minutes. Where as with my 6 Mbps AT&T connection it takes around two hours. But never having had high speed internet I never missed it. But that is something I am concerned about now. If I get used to lightning fast downloads, and then have to tell Suddenlink to shove their lack of service and high prices where the sun don't shine, I would have to go back to 6 Mbps again. But even if it only works half as fast as they say it will, it will be leaps and bounds faster than what I have now. So if it is reliable, and if it doesn't go over $100 a month just for the Internet, and IF they keep their lies to a minimum, I'll keep it. If not, I can always stick with AT&T.

However, when it comes to the Internet, Suddenlink was horrible at first. But over time, AT&T was still the same, and Suddenlink got faster and (hopefully!) more reliable. And when the Tubbs Fire in 2017 burned out a third of Santa Rosa, California, Humboldt County started thinking and a second cable to connect to the Internet might be a good idea. So they made a deal with Suddenlink because AT&T was too cheap to get involved, and now there's a second line, in case the main one gets burned, cut or whatever. So it might be better, but considering they can not be trusted to keep their word about anything, I am skeptical at best. So I not expecting much, and if I get more than I expect, I'll be happier than I am now.