Poweramp 3.0 Overview – Android’s Most Powerful Music Player is Still Kicking [Giveaway]

Poweramp 3.0 Overview – Android’s Most Powerful Music Player is Still Kicking [Giveaway]

Many people these days have switched over to music streaming services like Spotify, Pandora, or YouTube Music. Long gone are the days for many when their phone used to be filled to the brim with MP3 files, as streaming has become so much more convenient for many, myself included. Still, there are times when locally stored music has its own advantages over streamed media. For example, you can store files in FLAC format, a lossless codec which promises the highest sound quality possible. Files are larger, sure, but they sound better on higher quality headsets and speakers. That’s without getting into the data usage of streaming media, even if you can save songs locally on your service of choice as well. If you prefer to use locally stored media, then you’ll need a music player for that, which is where Poweramp comes in.


Poweramp is one of the oldest and most revered music players on the Google Play Store. With hundreds of features, it is one of the best music player available for anyone who is serious about their offline listening. The app hasn’t received a lot of media attention lately, but recently even more features were added in Poweramp 3.0, many of which users might not know about. We decided to review the latest version of Poweramp to see how the app currently stands. And to celebrate 9 years since its release, we’re giving away 90 codes – courtesy of the developer. Poweramp offers a 14-day trial, which is what we used for this review. We also recommend that you check out the app on free trial before you buy, so that you can figure out if this is the right music player for you. You can check out Poweramp’s website here.

Poweramp Music Player (Trial)
Developer: Max MP
Price: Free
Poweramp Full Version Unlocker
Developer: Max MP
Price: $3.99

Poweramp on Android

Look and feel

Poweramp’s customizability options alone set it far ahead of much of the competition. What other music apps allow you to install a custom theme from the Google Play Store? Not many. Poweramp comes with a dark theme and a light theme, with the option to install as many more as you like from external sources. On top of that, you can change around elements of the UI, such as remove the Chromecast button, add a track counter, change the rating system, control animations, and so much more. There are so many options available.

But options are nothing if the app itself isn’t intuitive to use. It’s very basic to use, with no ambiguity as to how it functions as a music player. Simply open the app, choose how you want to view your music and then select a song.

One feature that was added in version 3.0 of Poweramp is the ability to have a custom music visualizer in the background of the player UI. There are so many pre-configured options that you can select, and you can customize the visualizer from in settings as well. It’s fully reactive to the frequencies that are playing in the song that you’re currently listening to, so it’s a pretty neat feature to have.

Poweramp features

Poweramp is filled to the brim with features. There are so many that it’s honestly hard to keep track, and the settings menu can almost appear daunting at first. If you’re on Android Q, for example, you can seek through a track straight from your notifications. Listen to any albums with interludes? You can have Poweramp skip songs in a playthrough of an album that is below a certain length.  There’s also forced wakelocking so that Poweramp isn’t killed in the background, automatic album art downloading, automatic resume when a headset is plugged back in/connected, and so much more. It is well laid out too as features are organized neatly into sections. There’s also scrobbling support, Android Auto support, and even an option to skip songs by long pressing the volume keys (though this feature requires adb to enable). Poweramp also gets quite a decent amount of updates, so there are always new features getting added. Just take a look at the changelogs for the most recent versions to get an idea of how big the updates can be. Finally, there’s a fantastic equalizer that comes as part of Poweramp that we’ll be talking a lot more about in the next section.

Poweramp 3.0 latest updates

Build 838:

  • new Album Artist Label for Album Artist Tracks option
  • Start at Library option now modifies Back action to return to the current list
  • Manual Track Change Fading – No fading now doesn’t do any fade at all
  • Minor clicks are possible when very loud track manually changed.
  • Also short fade seekbars allow min. 10ms now
  • tweaked Most Played Clear/Show All action
  • Clear is based on time now, instead of number of playbacks
  • improved remote control/keyboard/mouse support
  • Hi-Res + Bluetooth for FiiOs
  • fixed license issue for restored backup from another device
  • rating in Queue
  • bug fixes

Build 831-836:

  • 64-bit build
  • Updated codecs. Added als, mlp, dst, mpegts, truehd support
  • Hi-Res support for Snapdragon based OPPOs @ Oreo
  • Hi-Res support for OnePlus 7 Pro (requires Dolby Atmos set to None)
  • zoom levels for Search (list only)
  • translation updates – big thanks to all our Crowdin translators!
  • bug fixes and stability improvements

Build 830:

  • Hi-Res support for Snapdragon based OPPOs @ Pie
  • translation updates
  • bug fixes and stability improvements

Build 829:

  • Audio / Direct Volume Control (DVC) options
  • No DVC Headroom Gain
  • No DVC for Bluetooth Absolute Volume / Media Sync
  • As some devices lie about Absolute Volume status (Pixels), DVC+BT is disabled for them unless this option is switched off manually
  • Disable Bluetooth Absolute Volume / Media Sync
  • Ignore Video Tracks now also handles .3gp formats
  • Samsung @ Pie + DVC + Hi-Res (up to 192kHz) support for firmwares with changelist > 15516145
  • Samsung @ Pie default audio output is either OpenSL or Hi-Res, depending on changelist
  • separated List Options / By date added sort to By date added/modified and By date added to Library
  • Applied to files and folders
  • Library / Lists / Sort By Filesystem Date/Time option is removed
  • By play count sort for tracks
  • By number of files sort for folders/albums/artists/etc.
  • Show All menu action for Most Played, Recently Played, Recently Added
  • Show All action reverts Clear action
  • Look and Feel / Skin / Transparent Navbar
  • Look and Feel / Skin / Light / More Light
  • Library / Scanner / Symbols to Split Multiple Genres
  • Changes the way genre tag is split into multiple genres
  • categories meta now includes total duration
  • Folders Hierarchy meta now includes total children hierarchy number of tracks and duration
  • webp images support (in folder, downloads, embedded)
  • improved gapless for iTunes-tagged mp3
  • improved Chromecast album art support
  • improved wav format support
  • FiiO X5, M11 Hi-Res support
  • translation updates
  • bug fixes and stability improvements

Build 828:

  • Short folder names option now also affects parent folder name labels
  • new Misc / Prefer Lyrics App option
  • translation updates
  • bug fixes and stability improvements

Build 827:

  • Hi-Res support for LG G8
  • Hi-Res support for Snapdragon 675 devices
  • improved Chromecast devices compatibility
  • new Force Send Album Art option
  • For Chromecast devices which report no screen, but actually have one
  • new Short folder names option for Folders/Folders Hierarchy
  • Via menu / List Options. When enabled, short folder names are shown instead of full root paths
  • translation updates
  • bug fixes and stability improvements

Build 825, 826:

  • Hi-Res support for Snapdragon 855 (Xiaomi Mi 9)
  • playlist meta now includes playlist total duration
  • translation updates
  • bug fixes and stability improvements

Build 824:

  • support for Android Q scoped storage
  • Each storage (internal storage, SD card, etc.) should be enabled via Music Folders dialog as there is no global storage permission for Android Q.
  • Many internal changes to folders/library scanner to support (slow) scoped storage related APIs.
  • This change also improves USB storage scanning for pre-Q Androids
  • playlist entries now survive storage path changes
  • Required to support dynamic Android Q scoped storage selected folders.
  • Poweramp now keeps playlist entries even if Music Folders are changed/unchecked, Scoped Storage root changed, storage removed, etc.
  • Some related functionality is changed too, e.g. Playlists Export.
  • New Playlist menu action to Rescan / Resolve Playlist
  • new options:
  • Library / Playlists / Remove Playlist Entries On Track Deletion
  • Library / Playlists / Resolve Playlist Entries
  • Audio / Audio Focus / Wait For Storage
  • Library / Queue / Always Clear On Add
  • Library / Lists / Headers With Meta
  • Misc / Change Tracks By Long Volume Keys Press
  • Headset/Bluetooth / Vibrate
  • Look and Feel / Player UI / Animate Long Labels
  • bug fixes and stability improvements

Audio quality

Audio quality is what Poweramp was known for back in the day, along with its solid collection of features. Using its own audio decoders, Poweramp is able to have consistently high sound quality across all devices. Because it decodes the audio by itself and doesn’t rely on the Android system to do any of the work, its equalizer is one of the best in the business. It doesn’t need to use Android’s audio equalizer API, instead applying the changes that the user chooses to the decoded stream. What’s more, there are a lot of changes that the user can make. There are lots of different equalizer presets too, so that the user can tune it to their own listening style.

Final thoughts on Poweramp, and Giveaway

Poweramp is the best offline music player that I’ve ever used, and I’ve used a lot of them. Sure, I’ve switched over to the likes of Spotify, but that’s out of convenience. If you prefer higher quality audio files, then Poweramp’s commitment to high audio fidelity, great features, and fantastic usability are likely going to suit you just as well. If you think Poweramp is the music player for you, then you should also be sure to check back in this comment section and the comment section on the YouTube video embedded above, as we have 90 Poweramp keys to giveaway! Make sure to give the trial a go first, to ensure that it’s the music player for you before you make a decision. Good luck!

About author

Adam Conway
Adam Conway

I'm the senior technical editor at XDA-Developers. I have a BSc in Computer Science from University College Dublin, and I'm a lover of smartphones, cybersecurity, and Counter-Strike. You can contact me at [email protected] My Twitter is @AdamConwayIE and my Instagram is adamc.99.

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