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I'm running Ubuntu Lucid on my netbook, and I like listening to music while doing other stuff. Problem is: Rhythmbox is constantly consuming 7-9% of my CPU while it's playing. Now, 9% might not seem like much, but it's more than double the sum of all other processes, and it's a battery killer.

Now, I know that any music player will be active (not idle) while playing, and thus will consume more CPU power than idle processes. But I'd still like to know if there's a good music player for Ubuntu that's light on CPU.

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I hate to jump in an a really old topic, but since it pops up in the search engines when I was looking for an alternative - I would highly recommend DeadBeef. It's super-light-weight in comparison to Rhythmbox and is packed with features. It's kind of like the "foobar" of linux. On my system it's running 4% CPU 0.3% memory according to $top – Brandon Bertelsen Mar 18 '13 at 16:59
up vote 3 down vote accepted

moc :P , smplayer (uses mplayer), vlc, mpd (you have to learn this one), exaile (gtk2 lw).
These are the most used alternatives I guess. (Try exaile first.)

My favourite is still the xmms player. Its old, but does its job. Sadly they removed it from the original repo, but here is a PPA for it.
Here is a list also:

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Ok, I tested a couple. Smplayer stayed around 6-9% as well (if you count both the smplayer and the mplayer processes). Exaile managed to double rhythmbox's cpu load. Your link then led me to try cmus, and I love it. It's light (2-4%) and it's cute. Thanks for the tip. – Malabarba May 25 '10 at 18:26
No problem. SMplayer is more like a movie player than an audio player. – Shiki May 25 '10 at 18:44

For a light player I tend to use cplay, which is available in the Ubuntu repositories.

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