When AOL suddenly discontinued Winamp it left a bit of a gap in the market for those who liked the idea of a music player that was fast, small and didn’t hog system resources. As its name implies, Spotiamp aims to give Spotify Premium users the Winamp experience with a small, fast program for accessing your Spotify playlists without having to fire up the main software.
Spotiamp also lets you search for tracks to play, and comes with a built-in radio feature too. Once launched, the interface will be instantly familiar to anyone with experience of using Winamp: a tiny player window with all your playback options, including visual EQ, neatly laid out.
Start by clicking the Eject button to access the Open menu – from here you can load your own Spotify playlists, browse radio stations and even search for tracks to play, thus giving you access to all of Spotify’s content. Your choice will reveal a new Spotiamp List window, and if you click the EQ button you’ll find a third window gives you access to the equaliser for tweaking the sound. A fourth window – album art – is buried in the context menu that appears when right-clicking the Spotiamp icon in the main window.
This context menu also provides you with access to various settings – increase the bit-rate to a more audiophile-friendly 320kbits for example – and also lets you set up Spotiamp as a Shoutcast server, enabling you to pipe your music to Shoutcast-enabled devices.
In a further nod to Winamp, Spotiamp also allows you to resurrect your old Winamp visualisations and skins – simply create plugins and skins folders inside the main Spotiamp program directory and copy all relevant files across.
Pleasingly, Spotiamp lives up to its promise of being small and unobtrusive – on our test system its CPU demands were under 1% and took just 4.4MB of memory. It all adds up to a must-have app for Spotify users pining after a small, fast media player, particularly if you’re mourning the loss of Winamp.
If you’re looking for a less demanding app for accessing the music in your Spotify Premium account, Spotiamp is it. Shame it’s not available to non-premium users though.