I'm struggling to find a good music player for the Librem 5

I have my music on my sd card( SanDisk Extreme 128GB) and I refuse to put it on my main storage due to the 20 gigs the system takes up on my 32gb emmc. Only 5gb left.

The issue with that is that music players that don’t buffer properly/enough and can’t play music from the sd card without audio glitches.

So far players that can’t play properly due to the SDCARD:

  • Lollypop
  • Tambourine
  • Amberol
  • G4Music
  • Elisa

Players that buffer and play properly from the SDCARD:

  • Rythmbox
  • Gnome Music
  • DeadBeef
  • Audacious

The players that can play from my SDCARD don’t have a good mobile UI or are slow like Gnome Music.

Does anyone have any suggestions as to player that would be suitable?

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what about VLC?
I use it for almost any multimedia file

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I’m using Lollypop to play my FLAC library from SD card just fine with no stuttering. mpv stutters a bit in comparison because of high access latency.

I’ll give it a go, but I have never used it for music, any tips?

I should have mentioned that most of my files are in .m4a format (from apple music). Most of them are also larger than 10mb as I try to have the highest quality available. I understand that flac is lossless and I wouldn’t lose any information by converting. Do you think converting to flac would let them play better?

I am playing Flac music in Amberol from SD card like a butter even under inactive mode.

Looks like my issue is m4a format and not the music players themselves. I converted one of my songs to flac as @dos hinted at. Although it went from 8mb to 45mb in size it is now playing without issue.

I’ll test the conversion later to see if I can notice any degradation in quality. But if I converted it correctly, there shouldn’t be.

Only issue is that my music collection, although small at about 2gb currently will now be about 10gb in the flac format.

You can try .m4a to .mp3 as Flac is most for PCM to Flac.

Sorry, it doesn’t look like you can find good music these days anymore.

I highly recommend trying mpv in the terminal. It is extremely configurable and has a great --help command that can assist you if anything needs to be tweaked.

Sounds like you solved your own issue.

I use Lollypop because it does not lag with album covers, unlike Amberol.


Aside: I’m using Lollypop with MP3 music files on the uSD card and without any problems.

A compromise might be … master copy is lossless format on your “server” … converted to a lossy format copy for the uSD card. That way, there is no permanent loss and if and when whatever is causing problems with M4A gets fixed then you could convert again if you want.

I’m using 320 kbit/s MP3 - so while that is technically a lossy format, I’m a bit unconvinced that under the circumstances anyone could hear the difference.

To be honest the main reason for having MP3 (for me) was for use in the car that I had at the time. With the less than great listening environment in the car I am doubly unconvinced that anyone could hear the difference.

A terminal for everything guy ay? There is always one. And to be honest, I wish I was one too. Tried to be, but it is hard. Still, I think I could be happy in a guiless world. Maybe not on my phone though.

Thanks but as long as ffmpeg converting my songs properly I should be fine. Plenty of space, on my sdcard that is.

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I’m using clementine as a music player when I want an UI, and moc when I don’t need one

  • moc is a non graphical music player, you have to do everything by shell commands, and is not compatible with dbus (meaning music controls don’t show up in the notification screen)
    But its CPU usage is very low (~4%), so very good for power saving
  • clementine is a QT graphical player with a very powerfull search bar, and is more adapted to a PC than a screen phone, it’s still usable on the phone, is compatible with dbus, and you can set the size of the buffer in the preferences
    But the CPU usage is high (~19% when Lollypop is around ~10%)

You can try those :+1:

I know you said you’re not a terminal guy, but I have to recommend cmus anyway.

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Say what?!

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Yeah I don’t know what is taking up that much space, my home dir only takes up 5gb and I only have 5gb free out of 32gb. I assume that the flatpaks will be included in the system, and I have waydroid installed but that shouldn’t be more than 3.5gb. Thing is I don’t have many apps installed. So ether flatpaks are huge or the system is.

I actually love the terminal. But due to inexperience (I actually have a lot of experience but when you compare that to how much you need to master the command line, it isn’t much) I often find it faster to use a GUI for most things. But I’ll take a look. Thanks

Thanks I had considered Strawberry (an updated clementine fork that was updated more recently than 2016) but it didn’t look like it would work well at all on a small screen, but I might give it a go. Thanks

Showing music playing on the lock screen is important to me, but so is battery life, so I might give it a go.

Even after converting my collection to flac, Lollypop still has some audio glitches. They are much more infrequent, as appose to about twice every song, the glitch is only about once per half hour now. My other issue is that all mobile friendly music players are ether slow or have a bad design. Bad design seems to be prevalent with music players for some reason.

As far as I can see it, the only solution is to build my own, so that is what I am going to do. Might take me awhile but I’ll let you know when it is ready. I’ll be building it in rust. My goals will be:

  • Speed
  • Low CPU usage
  • Lots of Customization

Wait a minute. Mine is the same size. I thought it was a lot smaller, but it isn’t: I only have 11 gigs left. But, I have to add, this hasn’t changed much since I received and set up the phone.
And I never had any issues with playing music from the sd-card - using Amberol which I like a lot.

I broke my install so I re flashed the phone according to the instructions Purism gives. Now I have 27gb free… Hmmmmm… What is going on here?

But then I did an OS update through the PureOS Store and my phone is broken again. Black screen after decrypting the storage.


If you don’t have ssh set up. You can use a usb keyboard (directly or through a hub). More on this in the thread on the ‘major issues’ mentioned above.