Sunday , 21 September 2014

1by1: Friendly, miniature directory player

A couple of years ago, fancy audio players with shiny buttons and a million skins where the most popular. Now, I’m under the impression that people are looking for capable, but lightweight players, such as 1by1, a player which takes 200 KB of space on the hard drive. Even so, it’s not something you would say when looking at the features it offers.

1by1Installation & Requirements

1by1 has the world’s fastest install process. After you agree with the licence terms, the program does all the settings on its own, such as creating a desktop shortcut and Start Menu entry. The program automatically creates a folder in the system drive’s Program Files. Since most users choose the default install location and shortcuts, the fact that 1by1 offers no manual settings during the installation is a time-saver.

Being a lightweight application 1by1 has no hardware requirements and runs on Windows 2000, XP, Vista and 7.

Interface

1by1 has a very simple GUI with a section dedicated to a folder tree file navigation and one showing all the tracks from the selected folder. That’s basically how you load music in 1by1: simply select a folder and the program will load all the audio files it contains. The simple design, inspired by Windows Explorer offers users a familiar layout right from the beginning.

A toolbar located at the top of the UI, offers all the controls and settings available in the program. Besides the basic navigation controls, the toolbar includes many other options such as the Repeat menu, the option of moving a track after the one currently playing, remove individual tracks from the list, go to current track, quit after current track, track info, file finder, explore folder and reload the file list. The File Finder lets you search tracks by multiple criteria, such as name, side and date modified.

You can toggle on/off several elements of the UI, namely the tree view, the playlist view and the Big Title view. The program’s Options, available in the Main Menu, feature Equalizer and Audio Enhance functions among other useful options such as gapless play, fade on stop and skip, auto search directories and the possibility of displaying various information about the currently playing track (time elapsed, time remaining, upcoming track, track folder and pictures).

For such a lightweight player, 1by1 offers plenty of control. The Settings panel enables users to customize the player’s decoder, audio enhancer and equalizer. Also, you can remove/add toolbar icons, redefine hotkeys, customize the display, track list and folder tree view as well as changing the player’s font and color scheme. The System section offers several environment tweaks (enable/disable systray icon, allow only one instance of the program, enabled high task priority), the possibility to hide system subfolders and others. 1by1 also has a track logging function that can be enabled in the Settings menu with a few related options.

Pros

– Very small directory player with a speedy setup.
– Users can quickly navigate and load all the tracks from a folder using the folder tree file navigation.
– The UI is fully customizable from hiding/showing elements, to color schemes and toolbar icons.
– Built-in audio enhancer and equalizer.
– Offers the option to minimize the player to the system tray.
– Customizable hotkeys for almost all controls and functions.

Cons

– None worth mentioning.

Conclusion

While it certainly doesn’t disappoint in terms of functionality, 1by1 works fine without fiddling with its settings, making it a good, lightweight audio player for the tech-savvy and beginners alike.

About Cezar Renta

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