Subsonic: The Music Streamer You Didn’t Even Know You Needed [Part 1]

Have you ever loved something so much that you would donate a limb for it? Well fine, neither have I. But Subsonic comes pretty damn close.

While not exclusively an Android application, Subsonic is by and far the most comprehensive, reliable, and easy to use music streamer this writer has ever come across. And this writer has tested A LOT of music streamers (Orb, Audiogalaxy, Google Music, Apple’s Airplay, Doubletwist, not to mention your online radio like Pandora and Subsonic is different in the sense that it is not a hosted solution. You stream your own, personal library of music with a very high level of quality and compatibility, and only you have control of it.

While initial screenshots may leave one disconcerted, what Subsonic lacks in flair, it makes up for in features.

What features, you may ask? How about 320kbps streaming directly to your phone over wifi or 3g/4g? Local caching to minimize data charges and “buffering”? Support for Scrobbling, sharing, and podcasts? Transcoding on-the-fly of nearly any file to an easily playable mp3 format? Support for video to your phone?

Are you sold yet? Of course you are. Lucky for you, Sindre, Subsonic’s developer, has provided us with a great demo to test the web interface here. Now on to the fun part.

Subsonic’s BIGGEST disadvantage is its semi-technical setup. While not hard to those that are experienced in the field, your average PC user is going to dismiss the job before even trying to attempt it.

Never fear. I am going to walk you guys through setting it up on your own network, and provide some support in the comments. Check with us tomorrow for the full guide here!

[via subsonic]

  • ibmonkey

    At the moment I like audiogalaxy’s pin feature where you can make a song or album available when offline

  • Ryan Brooks

    Subsonic does it too, automatically. Music is “pre-cached” and thus, available if you go offline.

  • Portnoy Forward

    Sounds like this needs port forwarding. My music library is held on a satellite workstation that wireless connects to a home network through a wireless router. Opening ports is a pain in the behind and a dodgy proposition at best. Audiogalaxy doesn’t need any portion forwarding setup and neither does Google Music or Amazon Cloud. Audiogalaxy plays Flacs too. I don’t know what it’s streaming bitrates are but it sounds plenty good to me. And I drive around with Audiogalaxy without buffering problems. So you will have to do more convincing before I would switch.

  • Ryan Brooks

    This does require port forwarding, hence the tutorial coming tomorrow. Subsonic plays Flac (and wav, ogg, whatever you want throw at it). Audiogalaxy does NOT stream at 320kbps, which is a must for audiophiles.

    Not to mention Subsonic supports video, linking of songs, separate user accounts so that you can share your library, and it even works as a psuedo-FTP server, making your music readily downloadable as a zip package if you so choose.

    I am absolutely biased toward Subsonic, but I also feel like anyone would be if they tried it :)

  • Ryan Brooks