For our May “Staff Pick” Project of the Month, we selected fre:ac, Audio converter and CD ripper for various formats. fre:ac was previously elected “Community Choice” Project of the Month in October of 2015 where lead developer Robert Kausch spoke about the project’s developments and direction. Recently we caught up with Robert to find out how the project has been doing since then.
SourceForge (SF): What significant changes have occurred with your project since you were voted Project of the Month in October 2015?
Robert Kausch (RK): Back in 2015, I had a very ambitious release schedule for fre:ac. Unfortunately, that did not work out that well as challenges in my personal life interfered and I did not get as much time to spend on fre:ac as expected.
So there is no fre:ac 1.1 release yet, but the project is back on track making good progress towards it. Several major new features like support for multi-channel audio and a digital signal processing (DSP) engine have been added, making the current alpha release almost feature complete with respect to the upcoming 1.1 version.
SF: Have any of your project goals changed since then?
RK: The ultimate project goal is simple and will always stay the same: Build the best audio converter possible.
In the near term, the goal still is to stabilize the fre:ac 1.1 codebase and replace the aging 1.0.x release series. The new codebase brings a complete rewrite of the audio conversion engine, a modular architecture for codecs and extensions and a long list of new features.
SF: What can we look forward to with fre:ac?
RK: A fre:ac 1.1 beta release should be available very soon and will open up many of the new features to a broader audience. The focus absolutely is on getting that – and subsequently the fre:ac 1.1 final release – ready.
Following that, there already are plans for going forward to a 1.2 version. I will write about these in the fre:ac development blog when the time is ripe.
SF: Is there anything else we should know?
RK: Thanks again to everyone supporting this project! Whether it’s making donations, sending bug reports and feature requests or simply spreading the word about it. All of this contributes to advancing the project and fre:ac would not be what it is today without your help!
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