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So... I've been waiting for KDE 4 for quite some time, just reading all I can about it and trying to absorb everything. Unfortunately, now that its out, I have ...
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    KDE 4 and Phonon


    So... I've been waiting for KDE 4 for quite some time, just reading all I can about it and trying to absorb everything. Unfortunately, now that its out, I have nothing to install it on (my computer's across the country) so I can't try it out.

    Regardless, one of the things that I thought was interesting when reading an article about KDE4 was how they found a way to streamline system calls for media (Phonon), but I didn't understand, really, what Phonon does, what it is, and how it solves a lot of media playback issues in Linux.

    If anyone could help me better understand, that'd be great, read the Wiki entry and all

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayek View Post
    Regardless, one of the things that I thought was interesting when reading an article about KDE4 was how they found a way to streamline system calls for media (Phonon), but I didn't understand, really, what Phonon does, what it is, and how it solves a lot of media playback issues in Linux.

    If anyone could help me better understand, that'd be great, read the Wiki entry and all
    If you read the wiki here:

    Phonon (KDE) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    There's little more that can be said. Phonon is a way to abstract multimedia stuff. So, when you program a media player or any other thing related to multimedia, you don't need to deal with alsa, oss, windows' sound or midi stuff, or any other thing like that. You just write it for phonon, and it automatically works on any platform that can run kde4.

    It's much simplear than having to rewrite parts of your application so it can run on each sound system adequately. This is just one example, phonon will help you to deal with all the media stuff.

    For the final user, it might mean things like more control over your mixer setups, a desktop-wide equalizer or even independent setups for each application (even for each running instance of a given app). Phonon has an unlimited set of capabilities, and I must admit that I haven't really researched too much into it to be able to clarify much more.

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    I'm curious to see what way Phonon goes now. There were comparisons with GStreamer at the start, but now I see a lot of distros considering Pulse Audio which does something similar. I'm wondering if perhaps we're going to end up with two or three abstraction layers plugged into each other here?!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigtomrodney View Post
    I'm curious to see what way Phonon goes now. There were comparisons with GStreamer at the start, but now I see a lot of distros considering Pulse Audio which does something similar. I'm wondering if perhaps we're going to end up with two or three abstraction layers plugged into each other here?!
    Phonon, in principle, is just a layer that acts as a wrapper. KDE apps can communicate with it directly, and phonon will take care to send the output to the relevant place. It is not aimed to substitute anything, but instead, its purpose is to wrap all this crap into a single layers that kde apps can understand.

    It shouldn't add any real overhead, since it's just that: a wrapper. Actually, no processing is done in the phonon's side. It just send the things to the correct place in a correct way. And that way, kde programmers can forget about dealing with the thousands of drivers, backends, frameworks and foobars that there are around for multimedia purposes.

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    Dual sound cards with phonon

    One nice thing about phonon is it centralizes the controls for your sound devices so you can actually manage more than one card in a computer without messing with config files or separate configurations for each app or multimedia api.

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