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Embedded MP3 Player and Playlists

permalink   Wed, Feb 7, 2007 @ 9:31 PM
In case you blinked, ccMixter has finally caught up with every other media site and now has an embedded MP3 player and playlists.

Embedded MP3 Player

Next to most uploads you now see a little Speaker button with (sometimes with a Play next to it). If you have Flash (tm) 8 or higher installed as a plug in with your browser the track will play “in your browser.” If you don’t have the right version of Flash (tm) then the file stream with whatever you’ve got setup as your default MP3/M3U player (usually QuickTime, iTunes, Windows Media Player, etc.)

Note: to get the full benefit of this feature you can download the latest version of Flash (tm) from here.
Because the song is playing in your browser, if you navigate to another page the song will stop playing. This is the way it’s supposed to work.

Special shout out to dj peregrine who wrote the Flash (tm) player for us — just don’t blame him for the user interface, that was all done on top of he gave us.

SPECIAL NOTE: Older versions of Flash (tm)’s MP3 player only knows how to play sample rates divisible by 11 so, to those versions, all the tracks encoded at 48k will not play and so there will be no speaker button. Please consider upgrading to a new version of Flash if you are having playback issues. Also: Uploads over a given file size (13MB) will not be available for Flash (tm) playing.


The big new feature on the site is playlists. There are two types of playists “dynamic” and the “other kind.”

For both kinds of playlists you can open them in a separate window (if you have Flash (tm) 8 or above) and start playing so you can continue to browse the site (or the web) and the playlist will continue to play.

HINT: If a song is playing in the background that you suddenly fall in love with it, click on the name of the song and the song’s page will open in your main browser window while continuing to play. You can then review/rate song right there.


Any one (even folks not registered at the site) can create dynamic playlists. In that form you can specify upload types, users (based on a lookup in our database), tags (again, looked up automatically), license, score, etc. and a playist is dynamically created and presented to you.

Registered users can then save that playlist which will become part of your profile. You can rename it, tag it, adjust the dynamic criteria and share it with others.

The contents of your Dynamic playlist will change depending on new uploads to the site. So for example, if you have a playist that is based on the ‘hip_hop’ tag, when some one uploads a new track with that tag, the new song will pop to the top of your playlist.

Other Kind

Registered users will see a ‘Add to playlist’ button on every upload on the site and a ‘Add to…’ button on every song on song in every playlist. Using these buttons you can add/remove tracks to and from your personal playlists.

The contents of this kind of playlist will only change when you edit it (like WebJay (tm) and more traditional playlists).


These features are coming in the future so don’t bother asking for them (although cheerleading is always encouraged):

- Play counts - we are keeping close tabs on every play of every song from every playlist. At some point we will start tabulating these and including these numbers into the ‘favorites’ calculations.

- Search by tag - make sure to tag your playlist because at some point we’ll have a way to browse playlists by tags

- Stream too - we will add a ‘stream’ link next to the ‘Play in Window’ so you can (if you choose) play the playlist in your favorite media player.

- Picks Page - at some point we will update the ‘Picks’ page with play buttons and playlists.

- Sample brower - at some point we will update the sample browser with play buttons

- Remix Radio - at some point Remix Radio will generate dynamic playlists too.

Hope that covers it, if you have any questions (or you know, find bugs) let us know.


[EDIT] This topic was edited July 13, 2009 to reflect changes in Flash(tm)

[EDIT] This topic was edited Dec. 8, ‘09 to reflect changes in file size policy.

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Luke Tripp
permalink   Thu, Feb 8, 2007 @ 1:53 AM
I can’t seem to ever get the playlist page loaded up. I’ve downloaded and installed the latest version of Flash for both Firefox and IE6. But still doesn’t load. Do I need IE7?


EDIT: Nevermind, now I got it. I had to add one song first, now I can see the playlists and default one. :P

EDIT #2: Could we also see about getting a feature where we leave like a little review or something about the song, why we chose it to add to our playlist?
permalink   Thu, Feb 8, 2007 @ 12:26 PM
Quote: EDIT #2: Could we also see about getting a feature where we leave like a little review or something about the song, why we chose it to add to our playlist?

yup, or I could correllate it with your actual review of the track (?). For now you can heap it into the playlists ‘description’ field.

Right now I busy chasing down bugs in the new code, like why I didn’t get notified you had replied ;)

permalink   Thu, Feb 8, 2007 @ 4:08 PM
Wow, what a nice surprise! I only played a little bit with it now, but this is a great addition to the site! Two thumbs up!

BTW: is there any chance that the Flash version requirement could be lowered to V7? I’d love to surf ccMixter on my Wii, but it only supports Flash 7. :-(
permalink   victor Thu, Feb 8, 2007 @ 4:35 PM
thanks ;)

and no ~ there really is no way at this point, there’s remarkably little code in our player but what’s there depends on a specific feature we need. sry.
Luke Tripp
permalink   Thu, Feb 8, 2007 @ 11:18 PM
For some reason Ophelia’s Song (DNA Remix) won’t play in my playlist. It just skips it right to the next one. Any ideas to fix it? I’ve tried removing it, and adding it again, but same results…
permalink   victor Fri, Feb 9, 2007 @ 1:09 AM
hey, I’m impressed that you could remove and add again w/o problems! lol. Yea, I noticed that with DNA but couldn’t immediately figure it out. My connection tonight is really shoddy so it’s really hard for me to tell what to blame. I’ll check it out from the office tomorrow
MC Jack in the Box
permalink   Sat, Feb 10, 2007 @ 10:27 AM
would be kind of cool to be able to add comments to individual playlists. not sure if thats an option, but it would be cool.
permalink   victor Sat, Feb 10, 2007 @ 1:33 PM
yup, noted here — I’m afraid it’s not going to happen right away
permalink   MC Jack in the Box Sat, Feb 10, 2007 @ 1:58 PM
yeah, not just comments to playlists i make but me commenting on other playlists as well. wait, that sounds greedy but it’s not.

either way, the upgrades are nice.
permalink   victor Sat, Feb 10, 2007 @ 5:22 PM
oh sorry, misunderstood. that’s a great idea, time permitting (which is tough) it would be relatively straight forward to reuse the upload review code.
permalink   Mon, Jul 13, 2009 @ 7:30 PM
Here’s an update: newer version of Flash(tm) no longer have the old sample rate restrictions. It appears the vast majority of our visitors on these newer versions so we have re-enabled other bit rates for the native MP3 player.

*** Topic deleted by author ***
permalink   victor Wed, Jul 15, 2009 @ 11:23 AM
restricting to mp3 is not going to fly (religious, patent, personal preferences, etc.) and ime people just don’t read stuff on the screen.

for the 108 wma’s out of 14,706 audio files, I’m content replying to the once-a-month panic email I get about why the little speaker doesn’t show up rather than pile on more ‘documentation’
Uncool Bob
permalink   Thu, Dec 10, 2009 @ 11:03 AM
Hi Victor and your new corporate overlords ;-)

Is the tiny button player available for use by the community? I downloaded the ccHost zip file and found some .swf files, but wasn’t sure which one to use, and documentation was lacking.

I would appreciate this nice player
because the xpsf musicplayer buttons on don’t tell the others to stop when one is pressed…

permalink   Snowflake Sat, Dec 12, 2009 @ 9:23 PM
i think it is hilarious we’ve been referred to as corporate overlords! i’m not sure about the player but will ask someone with better nerd skills than myself. we are still learning everything there is to know about this amazing site!

thanks for your patience.
permalink   Uncool Bob Sun, Dec 13, 2009 @ 5:07 AM
Quote: Snowflakei think it is hilarious we’ve been referred to as corporate overlords! i’m not sure about the player but will ask someone with better nerd skills than myself. we are still learning everything there is to know about this amazing site!

thanks for your patience.

thanks, and no hurry! glad you saw the humour in my comment :-)
permalink   go1dfish Wed, Feb 17, 2010 @ 2:06 AM
Fellow corporate overlord here ;)

You don’t see a swf for the button player, because unlike the other players it is not a pure flash widget, the button, and progress display are done in javascript/html/css (note the easiest way to tell this is by right clicking it, you don’t get the flash menu). Flash is still required/used in the background for playback, but isn’t visible in any way.

Because the button player is not a self contained flash applet, it wont be as straightforward to pull this type of player and stick it on another site. Also, this is the reason why it is able stop one song when another stops (javascript coordinates between the players/tracks, even on different pages)

The js code for this player is in ccskins/shared/js/playerembed.js in ccHost I’m pretty sure the swf it’s using is cchost_lib/fplayer/ccmixter2.swf

I think for this purpose you’d have an easier time using an existing standalone player though, I highly recommend soundmanager2: it’s a swf/js/css combination for doing the type of player I describe here, with good docs and examples.

We use a similar player setup over on as well, built on soundmanager2.
permalink   Uncool Bob Wed, Feb 17, 2010 @ 2:30 AM
Hi go1dfish,

Thanks for getting back to me with the useful details. I am currently using a free soundcloud account which has a good player, although no button player with the free account. Their playlist player is fit or purpose though.

Thanks again, and I’ll take a look at soundmanager2 also.

permalink   go1dfish Thu, Feb 18, 2010 @ 2:17 AM
No prob, soundmanager2 is a very flexible library. The soundcloud guys used it for this project as well:

I’m not certain, but I think the soundcloud player’s on the soundcloud website are sm2 based as well. The embedabble players for other sites (like the playlist playe you’re using) aren’t though (again, this type of player is a bit harder to embed than a pure flash player)
permalink   Uncool Bob Thu, Feb 18, 2010 @ 3:48 AM
sm2 looks great. if it can play one MP3 seamlessly after another then I could do the entire evolutionary music interface in javascript and avoid having to stream anything (which we do now - you have to have browser and iTunes (or whatever) both visible).
permalink   go1dfish Fri, Feb 19, 2010 @ 12:46 PM
I don’t think it has any facilities for what you’d call true ‘gapless’ playback (i.e. listening to a cut up version of dark side of the moon might not flow quite perfectly in this manner) But no web based mp3 player I’m aware of does.

However it is possible to make sm2 prefetch a track before playing it. So you would be able to prefetch the next track while the current is playing to help reduce the gap further. This is something I’ve been meaning to try out for a while, but haven’t ever gotten around to it.
permalink   Uncool Bob Fri, Feb 19, 2010 @ 1:51 PM
I think you’re right about the seamless/gapless playback. I’m following related threads on the sm2 support forum. Will see where it leads. Thanks again for your help!