When comparing MusicBee vs foobar2000, the Slant community recommends foobar2000 for most people. In the question“What are the best music players for Windows?” foobar2000 is ranked 1st while MusicBee is ranked 2nd. The most important reason people chose foobar2000 is:
Foobar200 has [over a hundred components](http://www.foobar2000.org/components) to choose from that add UI functionality, decoding support for various formats, etc.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Customizable look and feel
MusicBee can be skinned which can significantly change the appearance of a player.
To apply a skin, it must first be downloaded, moved to the appropriate folder, and after restarting MusicBee, it can be applied. A collection of skins can be found here. It's also possible to customize the layout by choosing which panels to display.
Pro Remarkably responsive interface with small to medium numbers of files
Your media library is stored in a flat file rather than a traditional database, limiting its ability to manage truly massive collections of audio files, but offering far reduced processing overhead for small to medium-large collections.
Pro Can autofill information on songs
MusicBee can automatically identify songs based on their sound signature and use that information to pull metadata about the song (such as tags, artwork, and lyrics).
Pro Simple interface
MusicBee offers a very straight-forward and easy-to-use interface.
Pro Portable version is available
A version of MusicBee can be used without having to be installed. It can be kept on an external device and run from that.
Pro Functionality can be extended via plugins
A collection of plugins can be found here. These plugins extend the uses of the app from iOS support, last.fm support, to streaming services support.
Pro Auto-playlist creation with powerful rules
Pro iOS sync support
There is a plugin available that allows users to sync their iOS devices (including music ad podcasts).
Pro Integrates with Last.fm
MusicBee allows scrobbling with Last.fm.
Pro Lots of ways to organize media
Pro Synchronized lyrics
In addition to automatically pulling lyrics for songs, MusicBee can synchronise music playback with lyrics.
Pro Can convert media
Pro WASAPI/ASIO support
High-end audio cards can be easily used to their full potential without any additional software due to WASAPI and ASIO support.
Pro Good podcast support
MusicBee allows the user to subscribe to and auto-download podcasts.
Pro Waveform seekbar
Pro Supports Winamp visualizers
Pro Ability to lock down access to settings
It's possible to lock down access to settings while still having access to the player. This is great for parties, allowing guests to browse and play music without worrying if they will mess something up.
Pro Functionality can be extended with components
Foobar200 has over a hundred components to choose from that add UI functionality, decoding support for various formats, etc.
Foobar2000 has a clean, minimalistic UI, small filesize, and is light on resource usage.
Pro Plugins can be used to bypass Windows mixer to output a bit-exact signal
Through the use of a plugin (of which there are three popular ones), users can get bit-exact sound output straight to their DAC or soundcard. While not something every user will use, for audiophiles this is a pretty important feature.
Pro Supports a wide variety of audio formats
Foobar2000 natively supports MP1, MP2, MP3, MPC, AAC, WMA, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, ALAC, WavPack, WAV, AIFF, AU, SND, CD, Speex, Opus, and support for additional formats can be added with plugins.
Pro Transcodes all supported audio formats
The converter component allows foobar2000 to convert from and to any file formats that the player is capable of playing back.
Pro ReplayGain support
ReplayGain can be applied on a per album or track basis, allowing the user to set up an even volumed listening experience.
Pro Advanced layout
The player has a layout-editing mode that allows for a wide variety of UI setups.
Pro Variety of skins available
Browsing a site like DeviantArt will give you hundreds of skins (that have been made by other users) to choose from.
Pro MP3 player management
Users can easily send their music files to their MP3 device through the use of the right click menu when browsing their library.
Pro Highly customisable
Foobar 2000 has powerful theming support.
Pro Built-in support for Windows Media streaming
Foobar2000 can natively play ASX/MMS/RTSP streams.
Pro Internal search is a beast
Foobar2000 provides an extensive search to look through your library. It supports special queries to only look for certain tags and other conditions and is incredibly fast in doing so even with over 20k of songs in your library.
Con MP3 and AAC transcoding requires installing separate encoders
Due to licensing reasons, MP3 and AAC encoders don't come bundled with the software and have to be installed separately.
Con The UPnP plugin is still buggy
Con Does not handle large numbers of files very well
When opening a large number of files, the interface slows down, album view blocks, process blocks disk every now and then on updates.
Con Doesn't integrate with system media playback interface
Con Not fancy
Con Not easy to skin
Out of the box it looks like something out of win2000. It is also very difficult to skin for the normal user.
Con Cumbersome start-up
Foobar2000 requires a bit of work to get it up and running.
Con Provides little in terms of hand-holding
Advanced tasks such as skinning and installing components may be a bit intimidating for beginners because they require knowing your way around the computer, not just the player.
Con The previous button doesn't work in random playback
You are unable to go back to a song when using random playback.
Con Locks files and folders, making it hard to manage them
Several parts of Foobar lock files and folders in a way that they cannot be file-managed (move/copy/rename/delete) easily in the program (and externally). With the waveform plugin it's even worse. Cannot delete a file until the waveform is fully scanned.
Con Breaks existing components every few updates
Makes it very hard to keep a customized version of Foobar running smoothly without worrying about non-working components.
Con Outdated Plugins
Many, many plugins are outdated and not maintained for years, leading to stability issues with a lof of them. A rather complex SDK and missing sufficient documentation makes maintaining or creating new plugins unnecessarily hard.
Getting to that neat GUI setup you've seen somewhere is probably impossible because of that.