I am very anal when it comes to certain things. User interfaces being one of them. Recently, I’ve come to like a more spread out and larger interface for my music player. I think its because my eyes are getting worse. But whatever the reason, I’ve moved from XMMS to Banshee. Banshee has its problems, the main one: its slow! But it has the best interface, dammit! I’m going to show my gripes about Rhythmbox here, and if I get some others who feel the same I’ll be trying to convince the developers. (Note: not bothering with Amarok, its too cluttered and full of junk, if you like that, fine, but not my cup of tea).
Gnome is suppose to be the desktop environment about small and useful interfaces. That is why I feel Rhythmbox would accept my changes. Here are a few screenshots (in XFCE, not Gnome):
The first screenshot shows Banshee. In the next two you’ll see Rhythmbox as well, one with the browser, one without, can’t decide if I like it yet. My gripes are:
* The Play button does not turn to a Pause button when a song is player. Yes, it pauses, but the image does not change to signal that.
* The placement of the loop and random button (to the right of the Next Song button) do not belong there.
* The button to the right of the random button is for displaying or removing the browser, that feature belongs in View! Not a button!
* The space between the random button and volume is a complete waste! It looks horrible. Just because Gnome does it with the top bar doesn’t mean you need to.
* The statusbar for showing the status of the currently playing song is way to long. Its just annoying to watch it jump across. Maybe thats because most songs I listen to are 3 minutes long so it really jumps, but come on! Its just ugly and stupid.
* You can’t get rid of the Play Queue. Why do I need that??
* Search bar is too long. Why have those buttons? Have them as a drop down (Banshee does this).
* The buttons next to the search also aren’t obvious they are with the search. It is just a weird way to place them and have them look. I don’t think I’ve seen anything like it before. Very poor design in my opinion.
* NEW: And who puts the Play button before the Previous Song button?!?
Notice Banshee does not waste that space next to the buttons. It also changes the play button to a pause button (not shown in the screenshot). It is just a cleaner and smoother interface. I feel these problems with Rhythmbox are so elementary that I find it hard to believe it was on accident. Someone must like this, right?
Should clarify the slowness. Maybe its just Banshee 0.13.1 on Ubuntu Gutsy. But I doubt it, I have used banshee on multiple distros. Just to give one example, switching playlists in Banshee takes seconds!! In Rhythmbox there is not a countable delay! This is not even close to the only thing slow in Banshee, searching, playing, etc are all slow. Maybe this will all go away with updates to Mono, but why not just make Rhythmbox better instead, it would be easier.