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Author Topic: Subscription Based Music Services -- Rhapsody, Yahoo, Napster, Urge, etc  (Read 12648 times)

jmmttu77

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I am contemplating joining a subscription based service allowing me unlimited downloads and transfers to a portable device.  Particularly, I have been looking into Rhapsody as I like their "channels" and genre playlists and since I have recently purchased a Rhapsody Sansa mp3 player. 

Anyone else using a subscription based service?  Which ones do you recommend?  Which ones just plain suck and should be avoided? 

Thanks for any advice.

Jeff
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scthom

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I've tried a few, but that was over a year ago.  I ultimately went with Rhapsody.

I like the fact that you can stream whole songs, and you don't have to buy them based on a 30-second sample.  I like that when you buy them, you own them and can rip them, move them, whatever (at least with my subscription, I think they now have a subscription where you can only put them on your player).
I like being able to use their genre's and artist information to find other artists or tracks I might like.

I used to like that it would play on my Squeezebox, but that doesn't work anymore.

I like that if you set it to download streamed songs, MediaCenter will play them.  You just have to play them every 30 days inside Rhapsody to keep the DRM alive.

The other services I tried only let you listen to 30-second clips, and they weren't easy to find new music.  That may have all changed since I last tried the others out.  I know Yahoo music didn't exist then.
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KingSparta

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recently like a few days ago

all the files marked "Streaming" in yahoo was replaced With "Subscription" and with the new Yahoo music program it acualy downloaded the media file.

I am sure is is encripted however
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jmmttu77

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Thanks for the info.  I have been playing around with both Yahoo and Rhapsody, trying to figure out which one I like best. 

I like Rhapsody's browsing style slighly better than Yahoo's.  Rhapsody's channels still appeal to me as they appear to lend to me discovering new music as you can transfer a "channel" to your portable player and listen to it on the go.  The channels just seem more professionally polished than the member based shared playlists.  Finally, the Rhapsody jukebox seems a little quicker to respond and less bloated than the Yahoo jukebox.

On the other hand, Yahoo's service is cheaper than Rhapsody and the Yahoo jukebox was able to import my existing M3U playlists and they are functional.  Rhapsody will not import existing M3U playlists, thus forcing you to recreate any you might already have.

Any more insight or advice from anyone?
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jmmttu77

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The more I play around with Rhapsody, the better I like it. 

scthom, do you experience much track skipping when using Rhapsody?  I am certain my internet connection is strong, but on a few tracks I have been having some skipping problems.


Edit:  I found out once you join the service the files stream to your computer much much better versus the 30 second clips in free mode.  No skipping problems whatsoever now.
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dcwebman

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I have Yahoo and have been extremely happy. With their MasterCard special (http://music.yahoo.com/mastercard), you get 2 years for the price of one so it makes it very inexpensive. New music is usually up on Tuesdays when they are released in the stores too. The good thing is that if you select Download instead of bookmark in the jukebox, it will download the DRM file to the computer and get the license for it. You then don't need to use the jukebox and can use another media player.
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Jeff

datdude

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Who do you think has the best coverage in terms of total number of songs you can download? 
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jgreen

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I have Napster and I believe their catalogue is still the broadest of any download service.  I can't speak to their new album program, maybe Yahoo's is better/quicker.  Most Napster tracks are 192 kbps, perhaps their remaining 128's are tracks yahoo simply doesn't have.  I know both Yahoo and Napster are MusicNet vendors, meaning they get their tracks from the same place.    Rhapsody is separate, and I would be wary of their proprietary player.

That said, I have never seen a more exhaustive music catalogue than XM radio.  It is through listening to XM that I discovered more 4s and 5s than from any other method, particularly FM radio.  Their music collection, across all genres, swamps any other  comparison.  Spend a few months listening to XM, then go to Napster, and you will know exactly what you want.
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scthom

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The more I play around with Rhapsody, the better I like it. 

scthom, do you experience much track skipping when using Rhapsody?  I am certain my internet connection is strong, but on a few tracks I have been having some skipping problems.

I don't generally have very much problems with skipping or slow buffering.  I typically like to stream rather than download and play, so you would think that if they had too much trouble I would know it.
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JimH

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I have Napster and I believe their catalogue is still the broadest of any download service.  I can't speak to their new album program, maybe Yahoo's is better/quicker.  Most Napster tracks are 192 kbps, perhaps their remaining 128's are tracks yahoo simply doesn't have.  I know both Yahoo and Napster are MusicNet vendors, meaning they get their tracks from the same place.    Rhapsody is separate, and I would be wary of their proprietary player.

Yahoo uses MusicNet.  So does MTV's Urge service.  Napster has their own licenses.  As far as I know, they don't use MusicNet at all.
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skeeterfood

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I'm currently using Yahoo (with MasterCard deal listed above), but I was with Rhapsody before that.  Both their players are bloated and slow.

Rhapsody Pros:
* Better integration of Artist/Album information
* UPNP Server (if you have harware that supports it)

Rhapsody Cons:
* Downloading tracks makes doing anything else in the player nearly impossible (unless they've fixed that by now)
* Version 3 is a UI nightmare compared to 2 (again, unless they've fixed it by now)
* More expensive

Yahoo Pros:
* CHEAP
* Downloading tracks while still using the player works great
* Ratings are much more integrated into the player
* Radio stations based off your ratings

Yahoo Cons:
* Always wants to show you songs, instead of Albums when you go to an Artist page
* Poor integration of Artist/Album info into player (Player links start an external browser to music.yahoo.com)
* UGLY color scheme, unless you really like purple

Having said all that, I'm cheap, so Yahoo won...

But, the first service that works as a service within MC12 will get my money when my Yahoo subscription runs out.

-John
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jmmttu77

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I am trying out current version of Rhapsody which is version 4.  I think its software/music jukebox is a fairly lightweight program.  Maybe they fixed things since version 3. 
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KingSparta

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Yahoo Cons:

After you buy a song it dups you out of what you were viewing, and you need to do extra work to get back to where you were to maybe buy more music.
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statious

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Sorry to resurrect an old thread but thought it better to post here rather then create a new thread. Is it possible to integrate Rhapsody with its UPnP mode to play through MC12?
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scthom

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Sorry to resurrect an old thread but thought it better to post here rather then create a new thread. Is it possible to integrate Rhapsody with its UPnP mode to play through MC12?

I don't think so, they're both UPnP servers, but neither is a receiver.
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jeffx

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Re: Subscription Based Music Services -- Rhapsody, Yahoo, Napster, Urge, etc
« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2007, 11:37:59 am »

thanks for the tip on the Yahoo music MC deal. I signed up a week ago and am loving it.
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