Understanding FLAC decoders

Everything about X, Gnome, KDE, ... and everything running on it

Understanding FLAC decoders

Postby debbieanne » 2020-01-23 17:35

I am trying to diagnose problems playing FLAC files on Debian. I have FLAC files that refuse to play through Firefox or interrupt in Firefox that have no problem playing in Clementine/Strawberry or VLC. Could someone explain where these decoders are located and if there is a way I can make Firefox use the codecs that Strawberry and VLC use.
debbieanne
 
Posts: 11
Joined: 2018-05-03 14:46

Re: Understanding FLAC decoders

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2020-01-23 18:32

Firefox should have native FLAC support. I don't know if it can be configured to use an external decoder.

Does FF print any errors to ~/.xsession-errors or the systemd journal when you have problems?
Black Lives Matter

Debian buster-backports ISO image: for new hardware support
User avatar
Head_on_a_Stick
 
Posts: 12150
Joined: 2014-06-01 17:46
Location: /dev/chair

Re: Understanding FLAC decoders

Postby stevepusser » 2020-01-23 23:35

Debian's Firefox or Firefox-esr use libavcodec to play back media, but that's a Recommended package, not a hard dependency. It's possible that if you installed the Mozilla version of the browser directly, or with the --no-recommends argument, you may not have the correct libavcodec version installed.

Do you have a link to, or could upload, a sample FLAC file that's giving you trouble?
The MX Linux repositories: Backports galore! If we don't have something, just ask and we'll try--we like challenges. New packages: Kodi 18.7, Strawberry 0.6.12, Pale Moon 28.10.0, Xscreensaver 5.44, Krita 4.3.0, Foliate 2.4.0
User avatar
stevepusser
 
Posts: 11786
Joined: 2009-10-06 05:53

Re: Understanding FLAC decoders

Postby debbieanne » 2020-01-24 15:52

Thanks for the replies. What is very confusing to me is that it is possible for Firefox and VLC to use the same ffmpeg library (libavcodec) and get different results on the same input file. I found a Mozilla bug report (https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1528265) from a year ago that discusses this reproducible freeze error that is the same as I am experiencing. The discussion centers around variable frame sizes and the way the FLAC standard is written and the way Firefox interprets fixed versus variable frame sizes.

One suggestion in the bug discussion is to remux the affected files. I am going to try to remux them from FLAC to FLAC to remove the issue that triggers the bug. If that doesn't work I may just convert the worst affected albums from FLAC to MP3. Or I will install Chromium to play audio or I will use strawberry (ugh, the tags, woe to me with imperfect tags) as a front-end to Subsonic instead of Firefox. There are some sample files in that bug discussion that may still be valid and you could use them to test your system for the bug.

Thank you for the help. I am surprised how difficult it is to find out about codec libraries and ffmpeg commands. I guess everything just works for most people because FLAC is rare, like us music collectors. I am going to be so sad when CDs go extinct. I hope my non-signed favorite bands will post FLAC online instead of MP3 when they stop printing CD batches. Save me, discogs.com!!
debbieanne
 
Posts: 11
Joined: 2018-05-03 14:46

Re: Understanding FLAC decoders

Postby stevepusser » 2020-01-24 22:23

There are many quite lightweight music players that will play FLAC perfectly, so I don't know myself why one would need to throw a heavyweight browser at the problem.

Strawberry's not even in the standard repos, so are you getting it directly from the developer, or another third party repo??? https://build.opensuse.org/package/show ... strawberry
The MX Linux repositories: Backports galore! If we don't have something, just ask and we'll try--we like challenges. New packages: Kodi 18.7, Strawberry 0.6.12, Pale Moon 28.10.0, Xscreensaver 5.44, Krita 4.3.0, Foliate 2.4.0
User avatar
stevepusser
 
Posts: 11786
Joined: 2009-10-06 05:53

Re: Understanding FLAC decoders

Postby debbieanne » 2020-01-25 16:45

stevepusser wrote:There are many quite lightweight music players that will play FLAC perfectly, so I don't know myself why one would need to throw a heavyweight browser at the problem.

Strawberry's not even in the standard repos, so are you getting it directly from the developer, or another third party repo??? https://build.opensuse.org/package/show ... strawberry


Subsonic, Emby and other richly-GUI music organizers exclusively use browser front-ends on desktop PCs. I use a NAS and a browser, because that is the way they designed it to work. When you have a huge music collection and wish to organize something to play for an afternoon, lightweight music players don't suit. I prefer Subsonic because it is so easy to follow a trail of genres or artists and build up a nice playlist in a few minutes. Clementine's interface is thirty years old and its rules for tags is painful. That said, I can switch to Chromium and all is well for now. But there is no good reason for Firefox not to play FLAC properly and no good reason we should have to tweak our Linux installs to get good audio playback.

As for Strawberry, I always say Clementine/Strawberry because they are almost identical. I am familiar with Strawberry from a MX Linux install I have used. It is identical to Clementine as far as this issue goes.

Thank you for your help. To sum up, it isn't possible to fix Firefox FLAC issues because it uses the same library as all the other apps that work fine. I appreciate the help in getting this far.
debbieanne
 
Posts: 11
Joined: 2018-05-03 14:46

Re: Understanding FLAC decoders

Postby stevepusser » 2020-01-25 18:21

OK, I see your point.

I was just curious about Strawberry because I'm also the guy that packages it for MX Linux.
The MX Linux repositories: Backports galore! If we don't have something, just ask and we'll try--we like challenges. New packages: Kodi 18.7, Strawberry 0.6.12, Pale Moon 28.10.0, Xscreensaver 5.44, Krita 4.3.0, Foliate 2.4.0
User avatar
stevepusser
 
Posts: 11786
Joined: 2009-10-06 05:53

Re: Understanding FLAC decoders

Postby debbieanne » 2020-01-26 14:08

stevepusser wrote:OK, I see your point.

I was just curious about Strawberry because I'm also the guy that packages it for MX Linux.


Thanks for mentioning that. I like Strawberry because it can use multiple music libraries. I have a copy of my Music folder on my TV computer and I have the same music on a Synology NAS. I can manage both libraries from the same copy of Strawberry at the same time. I intend to continue to use Strawberry as I imagine there are features I have not found that may be very useful. For example, the tag editing feature of Strawberry is a decent substitute for MusicBrainz Picard when tweaking tags to make Strawberry happy.
debbieanne
 
Posts: 11
Joined: 2018-05-03 14:46


Return to Desktop & Multimedia

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests

fashionable