Monday, 27 April 2009

Kaffeine 1.0 Pre-Release Preview - First KDE4 Port


The first pre-release of Kaffeine 1.0 was released yesterday so I decided to give it a spin and see how it behaves. Since this is a pre-release, it is not intended for general use and currently lacks many features and functionality from Kaffeine 0.8.7. This is first KDE4 port of Kaffeine for KDE3, which was one of the most powerful players for KDE, including support for DVD menus, subtitles, video effects, and supporting a huge number of video and audio formats via the Xine engine.

According to the official announcement, the next release will be more suitable for general use, and this one is intended for testing purposes only, it's just a preview.

Kaffeine 1.0 pre-release

For this preview I installed Kaffeine from source on a Debian Sid system.

The interface at first sight made me a good impression. It's characteristic to Kaffeine, clean and simple, with 4 tabs to the left for fast access to functions like playback, the playlist or television. As usual, Kaffeine will show several buttons for the main actions in its start-up window, and those include Play File, Play Audio CD, Play Video CD, Play DVD and Digital TV.

Start tab


The Settings menu currently includes only the option to configure shortcuts, but this is a preview release, so configuration options will get there soon.

The first thing which jumps into attention is the Television module, which looks extremely promising, but currently has no functionality (or at least, it didn't look to me to have any). However, I was enchanted to see it in concept: it looks great.

Television- no functionality yet

A good change which seems very useful is that the Playlist tab includes a playlist, a movie preview and also a file manager. See the screenshot below:

Playlist, file manager and movie preview

I was able to play Ogg Theora, but no other formats (including the free Matroska or DVDs).

About

Conclusion
Although this is a pre-alpha release, it looks just awesome, and if all the features (or at least almost all) will be implemented by the time 1.0 gets out as a stable release, Kaffeine will definitely keep being one of the most powerful video players for KDE. I'm very curious on how the TV functionality will turn out, and I'm also pleased to see the same clean and intuitive interface, which doesn't stay in the way of the user. I'm looking forward to a full-featured release which certainly won't disappoint the fans of Kaffeine.

Updated: April 28, 2009

9 comments:

Arne said...

I think for the TV mode you need to have DVB-S, DVB-C or DCB-T connected to your PC. Then you can watch Digital TV on your PC.

colesen said...

Thanks for the update. I was wondering because the Kaffeine home page for the longest time was silent. Because I very much look forward to Kaffeine on KDE4. Its all I use for DVB-T incl. HDTV, DVD movies and music. Even the "Start Scan" function as pictured in the article works. To me Kaffeine is the media center on Linux. Anyone know if DVB-C works in Fedora 11 to be released for pre-review tomorrow?

klearvue said...

I love Kaffeine - the best video player on Linux, and can't wait for KDE 4 version. I'm really glad they haven't pulled "Amarok 2" on us with this new release and did not try to re-invent the wheel.

Jeffry said...

I've tried kaffeine in KDE 3.5 and stopped using it because it crashed a lot. Otherwise it's a good media player. I hope the new version is more stable.

vincent said...

I thought Kaffeine was replaced by Dragon Player.

Anonymous said...

is there a way to remove or hide the side panel??...

Bobby said...

I just can't wait to see kaffeine on KDE 4. Kaffeine is the most user friendly and best multimedia player on Linux for me.
It's actually the only reason why I still use KDE 3.5.

Anonymous said...

I'll second the plea to have the navigation sidebar be removable. Zoom Player on Windows learned years ago that some people really hate these sidebars.

Absolutely will not use this player until it can be hidden or removed.

Maxx said...

I use kaffeine for Digital TV only because it's the only best player for my SkyStar 2 card. For other media files, I use lot MPlayer (on Slackware 12.2)