7 Best Windows Music Players For High Resolution Audio

By | December 24, 2021

While many Mac users simply choose to use iTunes, things are different on Windows. While Microsoft’s operating system has always offered built-in options like Windows Media Player or Groove Music, Windows users are more likely to seek out their own preferred music player.

However, if you are an audiophile, the search becomes more complicated. Try looking for a music player that supports high-resolution audio in FLAC, MQA, or DSD formats, and your options are slim. That’s why we’ve rounded up the best hi-res music player apps for Windows. But if you intend to search for Mac check out Best High Resolution Music Player Apps for Mac

Hysolid

If your PC is connected to a quality Hi-Fi system, Hysolid could be just what you’re looking for. This is not a traditional media player software. Instead, it turns your PC into a music player that you control with your iOS or Android device. Just kick back on the couch, select the music you want to hear, and your PC plays it through your Hi-Fi system.

Hysolid will play most hi-res formats you use. The app is compatible with PCM audio, including WAV and FLAC up to 384 kHz as well as DSD from 2.8 MHz to 11.2 MHz in DSF format. Hysolid can also display the operating mode of the USB DAC you are using as well as whether the playback is a little flawless.

Download: Hysolid (Free)

Amarra Luxe

If Amarra Luxe looks familiar, it’s because it has also earned a place on our list of the best hi-res music player apps for macOS. This is a premium music player, and therefore not cheap, but packed with features. It also supports major hi-res formats, including FLAC, MQA, and DSD. Unfortunately, MQA is currently only supported on macOS.

It’s also a useful app if you also want to stream hi-res audio. Apart from playing back your music collection, Amarra Luxe can stream from Tidal and Qobuz. If you want to control all your music with one app, no matter where it is, this might be what you’re looking for.

Download: Amarra Luxe ($99)

Audirvana

Another app featured on our macOS list, Audirvana is focused on giving you control over your audio stream from source to output. If you have a powerful computer that you want to use to process great-sounding audio, this is an option worth considering. For example, Audirvana supports running high-performance algorithms to eliminate the burden of your DAC and avoid oversampling.

This app also supports VST3 plugins. Whether you want to add a touch of EQ or want to view your favorite songs through a spectrum analyzer, this can be useful for audiophiles. Audirvana is another option that isn’t cheap, but the sheer power of the app might make it a price worth paying.

Download: Audirvana ($75, with 30-day free trial)

Foobar2000

One of the most popular music players for Windows, Foobar2000 is practically a household name. It may not be a fancy name, and the interface is a little dated, but the app is fast, configurable, and perhaps most importantly, free. While it’s not the only free player on this list, it is the only one that resembles a “traditional” media player.

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Foobar supports FLAC out of the box, but not DSD. To get support for this, you’ll need to add the DSDIFF add-on, which you can download from the Foobar2000 website. Once the components are installed, it becomes an even more powerful audio player. This information is very useful if you already know and love Foobar200.

Download: Foobar2000 (Free)

Jr

Jriver is software that tries to do many things for many people. Luckily, it seems to do a good job at most of everything it wants to do. It supports slightly flawless audio in lossless PCM and DSD formats. When it comes to the audio subsystem, it can use ASIO or WASAPI, which means it will deliver audio flawlessly to your DAC.

There are some features here that seem obvious but which other players lack. One example is the optional audiophile grade cross. The developers say this makes listening in headphones sound more natural and less tiring, because it’s more like what you hear from speakers in a room.

Download: Jr ($59.98 for Windows license only, $79.98 for Master license)

Ron

While most examples of hi-res music player software focus on sound quality only, Roon focuses on something else. The developers say that something is missing in the transition to digital music. To bring back that feeling of engagement you get from researching liner notes, Roon aims to present a searchable music “magazine.”

Roon doesn’t just apply this technique to music stored on your computer. This can be done for music playing from a local NAS or even streaming from Tidal as well. If music isn’t a background activity for you but something you’d like to get into, Roon might be worth checking out.

Download: Roon ($199/year or $499/lifetime, with free trial available)

JPLAY FEMTO

If you proudly declare yourself an audiophile to anyone who will listen, this might be the perfect software for you. Developed by a self-described “audiophile fanatic”, this software aims to optimize everything to deliver the audio signal from the source to your DAC with the highest possible quality. This feature supports PCM audio, DSD, and even claims to improve the sound quality of Tidal and Qobuz.

Like Hysolid, this is not a player. Instead, it’s a server. Once up and running, you can use it with any UPnP compatible app or hardware device. The developers recommend Bubble UPnP for Android, but Kinsky for Windows, macOS, and iOS has been tested as well.

Among other features, JPLAY FEMTO includes Hibernate mode. It aims to reduce the background noise made by your PC. It does this by eliminating jitter-generating processes and threads. This means you may not want to use your computer for much else during playback, but it will sound fantastic.

Download: JPLAY FEMTO ($167.79)

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