Cantata 1.5 Released with Lots Of Improvements [Ubuntu PPA]

October 27, 2014 — Leave a comment

MPD Client Cantata 1.5

Cantata, yet another client for the music player daemon (MPD), now is at version 1.5.0 which brings lots of new features, improvements and fixes.

Cantata is a MPD client originally started as a fork of QtMPC, it can be compiled with KDE support, or as a pure Qt4 application.

Cantata works on Linux and Windows. Since 1.5.0 release, it adds support for Mac OS X.

Cantata MPD client

According to the changelog, The 1.5.0 release brings below changes:

  • Remove cover size setting, set automatically.
  • Artist images only shown in grid view.
  • No images, or icons, shown in basic tree view.
  • Remove GUI option to control saving of scaled covers. This is enabled by default, and can be toggled via the config file.
  • Don’t re-load view when sort changes.
  • Simplify view config pages.
  • Use QUrl with server details to build HTTP address used to compare MPD http file paths against.
  • Store song ratings in MPD’s sticker DB. Ratings stored using ‘rating’ key and values 0 to 10. In the UI, ratings are show as 5 stars.
  • If we fail to download a cover, don’t keep trying next time song is played.
  • Simplify toolbar cover widget, no border.
  • Allow preference dialog to shrink smaller. If screen size is less than 800px, then views page is re-arranged to allow much smaller dialog, category selector uses smaller icons, and headers are removed.. You can check this setting by calling cantata as follows: CANTATA_NETBOOK=1 cantata
  • Support MPDs “find modified-since” with MPD 0.19 and newer. If a number is entered it is taken to be ‘modified since X days in past’, otherwise a date should be entered (e.g. 01/12/2001 to find all tracks since 1st Dec 2001) Cantata will first try to convert from your locale date format, default date format, and then ISO date format.
  • Show covers in search results.
  • Show performer in cover tooltip if this is set and different to album artist.
  • Always large action icons for grid view.
  • Increase gap between add and play icons in grid view.
  • Disable volume fade on stop by default – this is really something MPD itself should implement.
  • Remove ‘Add albums in random order’ from view context menus.
  • Reorganize playqueue context menu.
  • Use ‘Metadata’ and not ‘Tags’ as metadata/tags view in context song pane.
  • Minor changes to song progress slider.
  • Show covers in playlist tree and list views.
  • Use read-only editable combo for filename in tag editor, so that text can be selected.
  • Also read /com/canonical/desktop/interface/scrollbar-mode to determine if overlay scrollbars have been disabled.
  • Add note about ‘AlbumArtist’ tag to initial settings wizard.
  • Use QDesktopWidget::logicalDpiX()/96.0 to set DPI scale factor.
  • Expand ~/ to QDir::homePath() when read from UI.
  • Save QDir::homePath()/ as ~ in config file, and convert when read.
  • Allow all bar title and artist columns to be hidden in playqueue.
  • Add option to disable song info tooltips.
  • Only show icons in message widget buttons if style uses icons for dialog buttons.
  • Add option to have separate play queue search action – enabled by default.
  • Revert back to storing scaled covers as JPG. PNG is taking too much space, especially with retina displays.
  • Read ArtistSort, AlbumArtistSort, and AlbumSort from MPD. If found, use these to sort items.
  • Add ‘Full Refresh’ action – cuases caches to be removed, and models to be completely refreshed.
  • Add actions to mark podcast as episode as listened or new.
  • Add action to cancel podcast downloads.
  • Download podcasts sequentially.
  • Configurable limit to auto podcast downloading.
  • When starting, remove any previous partial podcast downloads.
  • Don’t make media keys backend configurable, auto detect the best one.
  • Remove Gtk combo popup size hack.
  • Fix Qt5 translations.
  • Add button to status bar to eanble/disable playback of MPD HTTP output stream.
  • Show notification when outputs changed.
  • Connect MPRIS stopAfterCurrent signal to correct action.
  • Add prev/play/pause/etc actions to Unity launcher, and to windows taskbar entry.
  • Fix current track highlight in grouped view under windows for header item.
  • Use same selection drawing for all views.
  • Fix size of collapsed window in windows builds.
  • If run under Unity or OSX, then place close buttons on left.
  • Fix auto-marking of played downloaded podcasts when connected via a local socket.
  • Fix playback of local files by inbuilt HTTP server.
  • In catata-tags.exe set unhandled exception handler, to prevent windows crash dialog appearing.
  • If a command fails to be sent to MPD, and the socket is in an error state, then reconnect and update status and playqueue.
  • For windows builds, when window is not focused, draw sidebar selection as a darkened background.
  • If MPD supports https, then there is no need to convert SoundCould URLs.
  • If playlist is loaded and replaces playqueue, then start playback of first track.
  • Custom/thin scrollbars for context view.
  • If fail to read a Gtk setting from DConf then try GSettings.
  • Send a message (default to ‘status’) at least once every 30 seconds to keep command connection alive.
  • Fix inconsistent default cover sizes.
  • French translation – thanks to Jaussoin Timothée.
  • Seek 5seconds when control (or command for Mac) and lef/right arrow keys are pressed. (Seek setting may be changed via config file – refer to README for more details.)

Install / Upgrade Cantata in Ubuntu:

The latest binaries of KDE build have been made into PPA, available for Ubuntu 14.10, Ubuntu 14.04 and derivatives.

If you have already added the PPA and installed a previous version, just run system update via Software Updater will bring you to Cantata 1.5.0.

If not, press Ctrl+Alt+T to open terminal, run commands below one by one to add the PPA and install the MPD client:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntuhandbook1/cantata

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install cantata

Or you can grab the .deb installer directly from the Launchpad page.

That’s it. Enjoy!

I'm a freelance blogger who started using Ubuntu 5+ years ago and wishes to share my experiences and some useful tips with Ubuntu beginners and lovers. Please notify me if you find any typo/grammar/language mistakes. English is not my native language. Contact me on Google Plus or email to

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