May 192011
 
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Here’s the scenario: My music collection is on my main Windows PC on the middle floor of my house. I do 99% of my work on my MacBook Pro either on the ground floor or the top floor of my house. I like my music but hate iTunes (only use it for syncing iPhone/iPad apps and backups) so using Home Sharing was out of the question – I cannot trust iTunes to look after my music collection properly plus MediaMonkey is so much better with regards to features and functions.

So, how do I listen to my music while I’m working? MediaMonkey doesn’t work too well in WINE, it’s OK in Parallels but running a 2nd OS solely for music isn’t ideal…

For a while I used Spotify. I was using it ‘wrongly’ apparently though as I used to listen to albums I already owned rather than for discovering new music. They have recently limited the free version to only play a track a maximum of 5 times so my use has been severely affected.

I’ve been hunting for a method to play music on my MacBook Pro that doesn’t involve iTunes. Someone mentioned Airfoil for streaming music across a network which sounded OK but I would have to physically go to the computer to change tracks / playlists… Then I discovered MonkeyTunes which, put simply, allows you to use Apple’s Remote app on iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad to have full control of MediaMonkey. Sweet!

So, now I have my MacBook Pro running as an Airfoil ‘speaker’, the windows machine running as the Airfoil source and I use my iPhone to control it all. I can also use my Android phone as the remote too, or my iPad.

Another bonus is I can install the free Airfoil speaker app onto my old iPhone 3G and stream it to that if I wanted to connect that to my stereo or the dock when I have guests and the MBP isn’t loud enough.

I’m pretty chuffed! So even with iOS 4.3 allowing HomeSharing of iTunes library, I can still use MediaMonkey for my music AND have all the benefits (and more) of that being shared across handheld devices and computers!

The only thing that annoys me is I didn’t discover all this 2 years ago…