Ok, more than a few minutes to get back on this...
Now, I'm not a big fan of MS, but I have to admit, they've made some pretty heavy improvements with WMP11
The interface is clean and easy to figure out, and at the same time it runs deep, in the sense that there's a lot of power behind the clean, simple, interface.
CD ripping (to several qualities of WMA and MP3, as well as lossless WAV), is a breeze, and you can even automate it. You can set the player to automatically rip every CD you pop into the drive.
And you can combine this with the "Sync" feature, so that as you rip CDs, it creates a list of files to load onto your MP3 player the next time you plug it in. Spiffy!
Creating and editing playlists is dirt simple. As it should be.
And best of all... It's actually light on resource use.
Well, on a 2.4Ghz Celeron machine (pre-hyperthreading), with 1Gig of RAM, and onboard intel GFX, with a wimpy 64meg GFX card (to enable multiple monitors), I was able to pull off the following:
I put a DVD in one drive (Richard III), and an audio CD in the other. With the DVD playing full screen on one monitor, not only was I able to surf the net on the other monitor (with FireFox at full screen), but it ripped and labeled an hour's worth of music to MP3 in the background (From a legitimately purchased CD, natch). It took less than 20 minutes to rip and re-encode the CD.
The DVD didn't chug out or skip even once.
And that's a load that just plain SHOULD chug out that machine.
Color me impressed.
Mind, I'm still not going to give up WinAmp for a music player. I'm just to used to it.