Thursday, September 20, 2012

80 Open Source Replacements for Audio-Video Tools

http://www.datamation.com/open-source/80-open-source-replacements-for-audio-video-tools-1.html


Multimedia creation and consumption continue to be among the most common uses for PCs and mobile devices. Consider: According to recent research from the Pew Internet and American Life Project, 46 percent of U.S. Internet users have posted original videos or photos online. Seventy-one percent of online Americans have used a video sharing site like YouTube or Vimeo.
Recording industry trade association IFPI reports that more than half of record company revenues from the U.S. come from digital music, and those digital music revenues continue to grow every year. Global Industry Analysts forecasts that mobile entertainment, including video and music, will be a $67.6 billion industry by 2018.
In light of the massive amounts of time and money computer users spend creating and consuming multimedia content, we've updated our list of open source replacements for popular audio and video tools. While some commercial audio and video software can cost hundreds of dollars, open source software often offers very similar--or even better--capabilities for free.
Before we get to the list, it's worth noting that when we highlight an application as a "replacement" for another program, we aren't saying that they necessarily have all of the same features. Instead, we're saying that the two applications perform similar kinds of tasks, and if you're considering a closed-source option in one of these categories, you might also want to consider the open source alternatives we've listed.
As always, if you'd like to call our attention to other noteworthy open source software, please do so in the comments section below.

Animation

1. Blender
Replaces: AutoDesk Maya
This professional-caliber 3D content creation suite includes tools for modeling, shading, animation, rendering and compositing. Check out the gallery of movies, videos and stills on this site. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
2. Art of Illusion
Replaces: AutoDesk Maya
While not as full-featured as Blender or Maya, Art of Illusion offers basic 3D modeling and editing tools for amateur hobbyists. The interface is intuitive, and a number of tutorials are available. Operating System: OS Independent.
3. K-3D
Replaces: AutoDesk Maya
Another tool that's best suited for hobbyists, K-3D claims it "excels at polygonal modeling." Like Blender, K-3D also offers a gallery of still and animated art. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
4. Pencil
Replaces: ToonBoom Software
If you'd like to try your hand at old-school hand-drawn animation, give Pencil a try. It offers an easy-to-use interface, and it supports both bitmap and vector graphics. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
5. Synfig Studio
Replaces: ToonBoom Software
This 2D animation tool aims to make it possible to create professional-quality animation with fewer people and resources. It supports both vector and bitmap artwork. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.

Audio Players

6. Songbird
Replaces: iTunes
More than just an audio player, Songbird positions itself as a way to discover music effortlessly with recommendations based on your interests and your Facebook friends' likes. It offers Web, desktop and Android versions, with an iPhone version on the way. Operating System: Windows, OS X, Android.
7. Amarok
Replaces: iTunes
Amarok's claim to fame is its integration with multiple Web services, including Last.fm, Ampache, Magnatunes, MP3tunes, Echo Nest, Jamendo and others. It can also import your iTunes database, including your statistics and ratings. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X, iOS.
8. Aqualung
Replaces: iTunes
This app plays most kinds of audio files, including audio CDs, internet radio streams and podcasts. Other features include gap-free playback of consecutive tracks, multiple playlists, multiple skins and support for numerous input and output file types. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
9. aTunes
Replaces: iTunes
Java-based aTunes is both an audio player and a file manager. The interface is very basic, but it does provide contextual information like song lyrics, artist information and related YouTube videos. Operating System: OS Independent.
10. Audacious
Replaces: iTunes
Audacious offers excellent audio playback without consuming too many system resources. Features include a drag-and-drop interface, search capabilities, a graphical equalizer and more. Operating System: Windows, Linux.
11. Jajuk
Replaces: iTunes
Critics have called Jajuk "the most powerful jukebox out there." It's a full-featured music player designed for those with large or scattered music collections, and it's available as a download or as a Web app. Operating System: OS Independent.
12. Jukes
Replaces: iTunes
First released in 1998 as "Put Up Your Jukes," this older audio player was "created for the serious music lover." It offers an easy-to-use interface that works well with large music libraries. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
13. Rhythmbox
Replaces: Windows Media Player, iTunes
This Linux audio player for the Gnome desktop offers excellent media management capabilities inspired by iTunes. It plays most audio formats, transfers music to and from other devices, plays Internet radio, displays album art and lyrics, and more. Operating System: Linux.
14. CoolPlayer
Replaces: Windows Media Player
This "blazing fast" audio player offers a lightweight size, although it does lack some of the more advanced features of some similar apps. Multiple skins and plug-ins are available. Operating System: Windows.
15. Zinf
Replaces: Windows Media Player
Like CoolPlayer, Zinf offers a basic feature set for playing audio files on Windows systems. It plays audio CDs, MP3, Ogg/Vorbis, WAV and streaming formats. Operating System: Windows, Linux.
16. Moosic
Replaces: iTunes
For those who prefer the command line to a GUI, Moosic is a very simple client-server audio player. It supports MP3, Ogg, MIDI, MOD and WAV files by default, or you can configure it to play other file types. Operating System: Linux/Unix.
17. DeaDBeeF
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
The self-proclaimed "Ultimate Music Player For GNU/Linux," DeaDBeeF can play mp3, ogg vorbis, flac, ape, wv, wav, m4a, mpc, tta, CD audio and many other formats. Features include a drag-and-drop interface, support for multiple playlists, 18-band graphical equalizer, album art integration, optional command line controls, gapless playback and more. Operating System: Linux, Unix.

Audio Recorders and Editors

18. Ardour
Replaces: Sonar X1, Adobe Audition, Sony ACID
Suitable for use by professionals, Ardour offers highly advanced audio recording, mixing and non-linear editing capabilities. Key features include unlimited tracks, unlimited undo, 32-bit floating point audio path, sample accurate automation, more than 200 plug-ins and much more. Operating System: Linux, OS X.
19. Audacity
Replaces: Sonar X1, Adobe Audition, Sony ACID
While it isn't as full-featured as the commercial audio recording tools above, Audacity offers an impressive set of capabilities suitable for garage bands and hobbyists who are just getting started. It records live audio, converts among various file formats, allows users to edit sounds together in various ways and much more. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
20. Frinika
Replaces: Sonar X1, Adobe Audition, Sony ACID
Like Audacity, Frinika offers music recording and editing features suitable for amateur musicians. Key features include sequencer, midi support, soft synthesizers, audio recorder and piano roll/tracker/notation editing. Operating System: OS Independent.


Audio Ripping and Conversion

21. CDex
Replaces: Direct Audio Converter and CD Ripper, Exact Audio Copy, Audio Convertor Studio
This very popular CD ripper boasts more than 40 million downloads. It supports numerous encoders, including Lame MP3, Internal MP2, APE lossless audio format, Ogg Vorbis, Windows MP3 (Fraunhofer MP3), NTT VQF, FAAC and Windows WMA8. Operating System: Windows.
22. Free:ac
Replaces: Direct Audio Converter and CD Ripper, Exact Audio Copy, Audio Convertor Studio
Short for "free audio converter," free:ac converts among MP3, MP4/M4A, WMA, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, AAC, WAV and Bonk formats. It's available in a portable version, and it comes in 37 different languages. Operating System: Windows.
23. MMConvert
Replaces: Direct Audio Converter and CD Ripper, Exact Audio Copy, Audio Convertor Studio
MMConvert aims to convert both audio and video files among various popular formats. However, it has a spotty reputation and is better at some conversions than others Operating System: Windows.

Audio Mixing/DJ Tools

24. Mixxx
Replaces: Traktor Scratch, Scratch Live
Mixxx claims to offer "everything you need to start making DJ mixes in a tight, integrated package." Key features include iTunes integration, BPM detection and sync, support for more than 30 MIDI controllers and a cutting-edge mixing engine. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
25. Mixere
Replaces: Traktor Scratch, Scratch Live
Optimized for live performances, Mixere has a simple, spreadsheet-like interface. It offers unlimited file size, an unlimited number of tracks, unlimited undo, auto-triggering, fully automated sliders and more. Operating System: Windows.

CD/DVD Burning

26. AVStoDVD
Replaces: Nero Burning ROM, Roxio Creator
This helpful tool can convert various multimedia file types to DVD-ready formats and then burn them to DVDs. It supports multiple tracks and offers some audio and video editing capabilities. Operating System: Windows.
27. Burn
Replaces: Nero Burning ROM, Roxio Creator
For Macs only, this burning tool can create data, audio or video CDs and DVDs. It can also copy discs, even if you only have a single optical drive. Operating System: OS X.
28. InfraRecorder
Replaces: Nero Burning ROM, Roxio Creator
This Windows-only CD and DVD burner integrates directly into Windows Explorer. It can create audio, data or mixed-mode discs, and it offers four different methods for erasing rewritable media. Operating System: Windows.
29. DVDStyler
Replaces: Nero Burning ROM, Roxio Creator
This app aims to make it easy for anyone to create professional-looking DVDs, complete with interactive menus. It includes tools for adding subtitles, mixing multiple audio tracks and creating photo slideshows. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
30. Cdrtools
Replaces: Nero Burning ROM, Roxio Creator
First released in 1996, Cdrtools offer Linux users a set of nine different tools for recording CDs, DVDs and BluRay discs. Note that it runs from the command line. Operating System: Linux.

File Sharing Clients

31. eMule/eMule Plus
Replaces: BearShare, BitTorrent (6.0 is no longer open source), iMesh
Considered by many to be the best P2P client available, eMule is now optimized for use with Windows 7. The eMule Plus version offers a slightly different interface, plus enhanced performance and IRC integration. Operating System: Windows.
32. Ares P2P
Replaces: BearShare, BitTorrent, iMesh
Ares has its own network with integrated chat, and it also supports BitTorrent protocol and Shoutcast radio stations. Key features include fast downloads, a built-in media player and a library organizer. Operating System: Windows.
33. Shareaza P2P
Replaces:BearShare, BitTorrent, iMesh
Shareza calls itself the "ultimate P2P client" and boasts that it "just keeps getting better and better." It supports eDonkey2000, Gnutella, BitTorrent and Gnutella2 networks. Operating System: Windows.
34. BitTornado
Replaces: BearShare, BitTorrent, iMesh
As you might guess from the name, BitTornado is an alternative client for the BitTorrent network. It offers encryption and other enhanced security features. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
35. ABC (Yet Another BitTorrent Client)
Replaces: BearShare, BitTorrent, iMesh
This BitTornado fork adds a queuing system. Other key features include multiple downloads in a single window, customization capabilities, super-seed mode and more. Operating System: Windows.
36. DC++
Replaces: BearShare, BitTorrent, iMesh
Downloaded more than 50 million times, DC++ offers a lot of help for first-time P2P users. It connects with the Direct Connect / Advanced Direct Connect network. Operating System: Windows.
37. ANts P2P
Replaces: BearShare, BitTorrent, iMesh
ANts uses encryption and a host of other security features to enable anonymous file sharing. Note that the ANts network is smaller than many other file-sharing networks. Operating System: OS Independent.
38. Mute
Replaces: BearShare, BitTorrent , iMesh
Another P2P client with an emphasis on security, Mute uses indirect routing to help hide users' identities. Check out the site for an explanation of how its technology is based on the behavior of insects. Operating System: OS Independent.

Multimedia Players

39. VLC Media Player
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
This very popular open source app can play most streaming video and media files, audio CDs, DVDs and more. It comes with a skinnable interface or it can run from the command line, and it supports tags, subtitles and closed captioning. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X, others.
40. FFmpeg
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
More than just an audio and video player, FFmpeg also includes tools for recording, converting and streaming multimedia files. It humbly claims to be "the leading multimedia framework, able to decode, encode, transcode, mux, demux, stream, filter and play pretty much anything that humans and machines have created." Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.


41. Miro
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
This very attractive media player works on iOS and Android devices, including the Kindle Fire, as well as desktops. It offers easy import from iTunes, connections to Amazon and Google stores, conversion capabilities, sharing and very fast Torrent downloads. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X, Android, iPad.
42. Banshee
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
Banshee can sync your multimedia library with your mobile device, connect with the Amazon store, play podcasts and Internet radio, shuffle smartly and retrieve cover art from the Internet. It also offers optional Last.fm integration, eMusic integration, import from iTunes and other services, and minimode. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X, Android, iOS.
43. UMPlayer
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
The "Universal Media Player," UMPlayer includes more than 270 built-in codecs, so it can play nearly every kind of file, including incomplete or damaged files. Advanced features include a skinnable interface, subtitles search and sync, and a YouTube player and recording tool. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
44. Mplayer
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
This award-winning player also supports a long list of audio and video file types and codes. The standard edition is a command-line tool for Linux, but variations are available for other operating system, and there are also GUI front-ends available. Operating system: Linux.
45. XBMC Media Center
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
This media player was designed to work with home theater PCs (HTPCs). It offers an attractive interface, support for most remote controls, support for most popular audio and video formats, and playlist and slideshow capabilities. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
46. MediaPortal
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
Similar to XBMC, Media Portal also supports HTPCs and even turns ordinary PCs into advanced media centers. In addition to playing CDs, DVDs, multimedia files and streaming content, it lets you watch, schedule and record live TV like a TiVo, and it also works with most remote controls. Operating System: Windows.
47. Totem
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
The official movie player for the Gnome desktop, Totem boasts features like playlists, full-screen mode, seek, volume control, keyboard navigation and a nautilus properties tab. It also includes a Firefox plug-in for watching movies through your browser. Operating System: Linux.
48. Media Player Classic Home Cinema
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
This lightweight, customizable player looks and feels like older version of Windows Media Player. It supports numerous file types, and it has been translated into 23 languages. Operating System: Windows.
49. xine
Replaces: Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, QuickTime
Xine also plays an impressive list of multimedia formats. It features a skinnable interface, extensible architecture, fast performance, navigation controls, playlists, image snapshots, aspect ratio conversion, full-screen mode and much more. Operating System: OS X, Linux.

Multimedia Library Management

50. Data Crow
Replaces: MediaMan
If you've been wanting to organize your CDs, DVDs, books and/or digital files, Data Crow is for you. It creates an electronic catalog of everything in your media collection, complete with data imported from Amazon.com, Imdb.com, Softpedia and MusicBrainz, and it even tracks which of your friends have borrowed your stuff. Operating System: OS Independent.
51. Wwidd
Replaces: MediaMan
Wwidd describes itself as "Del.icio.us for your video collection." It makes it easy to organize, tag and search your video library, and it integrates with VLC for playback. (Note that the source code is available through GitHub. Operating System: Windows, OS X, Linux.

Music Composition

52. DrumTrack
Replaces: DrumCore
This open source app makes it easy to create your own rhythm track with nothing more than your keyboard. It uses multiple audio samples of actual drums, plus volume randomization, to help create the illusion that the track is being played live by an actual human. Operating System: Windows.
53. Hydrogen
Replaces: DrumCore
Suitable for use by professional musicians and producers, Hydrogen is a powerful drum track creation system with an easy-to-use GUI. The latest version adds features like a sample editor, time stretch and pitch functions, playlists, advanced tab-tempo, director window, timeline with variable tempo, single and stacked pattern mode and more. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
54. Linux MultiMedia Studio
Replaces: FL Studio
Specifically designed as a free alternative to FL Studio, LMMS lets users create, mix and edit sounds. It supports MIDI keyboards and includes a song editor, piano roll, FX mixer and numerous instruments and effects. Operating System: Windows, Linux.
55. TuxGuitar
Replaces: GuitarPro
Like GuitarPro, this app allows you to create and edit multi-track tab scores and play them back. Key features include tempo management, time signature management, autoscroll, special effects and import and export. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
56. MuseScore
Replaces: Finale
Sheet music creation software can cost hundreds of dollars, but this tool creates attractive scores for free--and it plays them back. Capabilities include unlimited score length, unlimited staves, four independent voices per staff, chord symbols, jazz notation, percussion notation and much more. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.

Screen Video Capture

57. CamStudio
Replaces: Camtasia
Many individuals and organizations need to make demonstration videos on occasion, but commercial screen video capture software can be very expensive. CamStudio can record your system's on-screen and audio activities, plus it offers some basic editing capabilities. Operating System: Windows.
58. Krut Computer Recorder
Replaces: Camtasia
Java-based Krut can record screen video from nearly any system. Key features include timer control, the ability to move recording areas, two choices for frame rates and highly accurate audio/video synchronization. Operating System: Windows, Linux OS X.
59. Webinaria
Replaces: Camtasia
In addition to downloadable screen capture software, this website also offers the opportunity to share your own creations and view other people's webinars and tutorials. A built-in rating system and discussion capabilities makes the site even more interesting. Operating System: Windows, Linux OS X.

Server Software

60. Ampache
Replaces: Real Helix, Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server, QuickTime Streaming Server
Want to set up your own streaming server? Ampache makes it easy and affordable and allows you to access your music and videos from any Internet-connect device. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.


61. VideoLAN
Replaces: Real Helix, Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server, QuickTime Streaming Server
From the creators of the VLC Media Player, this is another option for setting up an audio/video streaming server. Like the Media Player, it supports a wide array of file formats. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
62. Subsonic
Replaces: Real Helix, Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server, QuickTime Streaming Server
Subsonic can function as a streaming media server or a local jukebox. With apps available for Android, iPhone, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Roku, PlayBook and others, it's easy to take your music and movies with your wherever you go. And if you don't have a server of your own, hosting services are also available. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X, Android, iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Roku, others.
63. AmpJuke
Replaces: Real Helix, Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server, QuickTime Streaming Server
While most of the other options on our list stream both audio and video files, AmpJuke focuses on music. It also connects to various Web services in order to provide lyrics, album covers and other data related to the songs being played. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
64. Mp3dj
Replaces: Real Helix, Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server, QuickTime Streaming Server
Another audio-only tool, mp3dj allows users to search, browse or play their MP3 collections remotely via a Web browser. The interface is basic, but easy to use. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
65. kPlaylist
Replaces: Real Helix, Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server, QuickTime Streaming Server
KPlaylist was also designed with music streaming in mind, but it can support both audio and video files. Features include multi-user support with authentication, Flash player support, Shoutcast support, randomizer function, shared playlists and more. Operating System: Windows, Linux.
66. Darwin Streaming Server
Replaces: QuickTime Streaming Server
Based on the same code as the QuickTime Streaming Server, Darwin was also developed by Apple. It can stream live or pre-recorded content using RTP/RTSP protocols. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.

Subtitles

67. Amara
Replaces: Softel Swift, EZTitles
From the same group behind the Miro multimedia player, award-winning Amara aims to make it easier to subtitle and translate video. The project includes both downloadable software and a website for working on projects collaboratively. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.

Video Editing

68. Cinelerra
Replaces: Adobe Premiere
Cinelerra promises to "unleash the 50,000 watt flamethrower of content creation in your UNIX box." While it doesn't claim to offer all the features available in leading commercial video editors, it does offer many advanced video compositing and editing capabilities. Operating System: Linux.
69. CinelerraCV
Replaces: Adobe Premiere
The standard version of Cinelerra doesn't get updated very regularly, but this community-managed fork has added features and bug fixes more recently. It claims to be "the most advanced non-linear video editor and compositor for Linux." Operating System: Linux.
70. OpenShot Video Editor
Replaces: Adobe Premiere
Designed to be easy to use, powerful and stable, OpenShot is a popular Linux-only video editor. Check out the website for some helpful tutorials and an interesting blog that chronicles the project's development. Operating System: Linux.
71. Kdenlive
Replaces: Adobe Premiere
The self-proclaimed "most versatile video editor available today," Kdenlive is designed to appeal to both amateurs and professional filmmakers. Key features include support for most camcorders and cameras, multi-track audio and video editing, numerous special effects and transitions, intuitive interface and more. Operating System: Linux, OS X.
72. Avidemux
Replaces: Adobe Premiere
Avidemux is not as full-featured as commercial video editors, but it does have sufficient capabilities to meet the needs of most amateurs. It supports multiple file types and includes automation and job queue features. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X, others.
73. VirtualDub
Replaces: Adobe Premiere
Another "lite" offering, VirtualDub offers basic video capture and processing. It works best with AVI files. Operating System: Windows.
74. PhotoFilmStrip
Replaces: Adobe Premiere
While it's not a full-featured video editor like Premiere, PhotoFilmStrip is a good option for amateurs who want to make a movie out of existing photos. It uses the "Ken Burns" effect on your photos to make a much more interesting show than you could with PowerPoint or similar presentation software. Operating System: Windows, Linux.
75. LiVES
Replaces: "a href="http://www.resolume.com/avenue/">Resolume Avenue 3, AVMixer
LiVES, which stands for "LiVES is a Video Editing System," is both a tool for VJs and a non-linear video editing tool. It's frame and sample accurate, supports the latest standards and includes dozens of special effects. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.

Video File Conversion

76. DVDx
Replaces: Movavi Video Converter
Convert DVDs to any of the popular file formats with DVDx. It can also correct some file errors, split videos into smaller files or merge several files into one larger file. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.
77. DVD Flick
Replaces: Movavi Video Converter
This app focuses on converting video or audio files saved on your system into playable DVDs. It offers the options of adding a menu and subtitles as well. Operating System: Windows.
78. HandBrake
Replaces: Movavi Video Converter
This newer conversion tool also helps convert DVDs or BluRay disks to other formats. Features include chapter selection and markers, subtitles, support for numerous filters and live video preview. Operating System: Windows.
79. Media Converter
Replaces: Movavi Video Converter
This Mac-only converter supports avi, wmv, mkv, rm, mov and several other file types. A lot of its code is based on the Burn CD burning software (see above). Operating System: OS X.
80. SoX
Replaces: Movavi Video Converter
Described as the "Swiss Army knife of sound processing programs," SoX can convert among various file formats, add special effects, play files and record sounds. It's a command line tool, but it works on Windows and OS X as well as Linux. Operating System: Windows, Linux, OS X.

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