Free media player to last the ages
Winamp is a classic free media player for Windows. It has been around for years and knows exactly what its users do and don’t like. Updated frequently and almost totally customizable, if you’re the kind of person who still likes and uses a standalone media player, you’re probably going to be a huge fan.
What is Winamp?
Winamp is a veteran media player for Windows. It is highly customizable, very easy to use, and supports a really generous number of file formats, including MP3, MIDI, MOD, MPEG-1 audio layers 1 and 2, AAC, M4A, FLAC, WAV, and WMA. The app also offers a mini-player that you can dock to your taskbar for even easier access.
Winamp download and install
Winamp is a classic Windows app and shouldn't give you any trouble installing or downloading. During the install, you'll be asked if you want to make it the default player for certain file types and given the option to do a custom install (good if you know what you're doing and have certain preferences). Other than that, installing Winamp is very smooth sailing.
Once everything's been installed, you'll need to hop into the options menu to really get into any of the Winamp's unrivaled customization options. These are truly impressive, with ways to modify almost any aspect of how the app looks, performs, deals with files, or finds new media. If this kind of specification interests you, Winamp will provide you with hours of entertainment without even opening a media file!
Using the classic player
Back in 2006, when Winamp was first launched, we might have had to explain how to use it, but these days, we think you'll have a pretty good idea of how to get to grips with it! The first time you open the app, it will ask what music and video folders you want to connect and whether or not you want to import iTunes.
Once that's decided, you'll see the file structure on the left-hand side of the window, and the media currently playing in the center. Up top, you've got the playlist editor and the playlist search function, and down the bottom, a media monitor, which will automatically import any new media it detects (say, from a website or streaming service. The main window only opens if you open it, or you play a video. When only music or audio is playing, the player offers a smaller interface.
Once the main window is open, you can use the tabs to see your video, your full media library, a retro visualization of what's playing, or even a basic web browser. Another classic Winamp capability - the ability to change the player's skins - also remains intact. You'll find it under the options skins menus in the top bar.
An interesting story
Winamp's recent history hasn't been particularly smooth. Updates on the software actually stopped in 2013 and it was bought out in 2014. Things have been relatively quiet until recently when it was announced that Winamp is back with an ambitious new plan for media player domination.
The all-new Winamp is actually focussing on a mobile media player. that works perfectly on all platforms and plays all media sources (music, streaming services, etc.) through one interface. As an extra gesture to their (many!) loyal fans, however, they've also released this updated version for Windows.
Aren't you lucky?!
Classic media player that just works
It’s easy to laugh at Winamp. It’s been around for years, looks its age, and has spent the last few years, especially, stuck in' a sort of tech limbo - but it’s still an app to be reckoned with.
For Winamp’s millions (yes, millions) of users all around the world, they wouldn’t consider using anything else. It’s skinnable, customizable, and it works perfectly and, for many, is the perfect alternative to streaming apps and the dreaded iTunes. Give it a try - you might be more impressed than you think! Another good alternative is VLC Media Player.
The latest version of Winamp was recently leaked. This version is the official one, with tweaks to make it more stable for users.