Privacy and audio streaming: help!

Hello everybody! These last week I tried making a switch from Spotify because I needed a bigger and convenient library (a lot of anime songs and videogame OST are either blocked by licensing issues or straight up not available), so I’ve tried to find the best privacy-respecting client or streaming website that could work well for daily use (on PC at least, if it has mobile options even better).

I have tried the following:

  • YouTube Music; generally good, but requires a Google account. In terms of library has the blocked anime songs, but videogame OSTs aren’t available
  • YouTube-Music (th-ch); a desktop app that still requires a Google account and doesn’t solve any problem for me
  • SpoTube; okay interface, but only works with Spotify, so no bigger library. Open source and privacy respecting though
  • MooSync; the best one, but unfortunately feels very rough to use; it combines both Spotify library and YouTube and solves any problem that I had… if it worked. Sometimes it functions well, sometimes it just stops, not really suitable for everyday use (and development kind of stopped?)
  • Nuclear; extremely rough despite being promising, but basically nothing loads properly
  • Beatbump; their official istance has an uptime of 0%, which is impressive (despite at the time of writing working), making it completely unusable
  • Hyperpipe; great option, if it wasn’t extremely early in development… it still didn’t solve the library problem.

So, the ideal solution would be something that used the Spotify library coupled with Invidious or Piped to search on YouTube for those songs that are not available. Is the only solution to use Spotify with downloaded songs for everything that I can’t find?
If you have any suggestions, please help!

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You could try making a suggestion to the SpoTube dev to allow a ‘search on youtube music’ option. The app already uses the Youtube API for audio, so I don’t think it’d be a stretch to add as a feature.

Otherwise there’s always the painful manual way of using yt-dlp to download songs from youtube or any other source, syncing with something like syncthing, and using any local music player. Back when I did that, I’d just bookmark songs I wanted to add, and then go through catching up and downloading once a week. Definitely not convenient, easy to fall behind on, and uses up a lot of storage space depending on your playlist size. I wouldn’t recommend it, but if that’s for you it does its job well

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Similar questions have already been asked a couple times. I’d recommend scrolling through those threads first

Have you considered self hosting your own Navidrome Server + Subsonic client of choice? Its gonna be a pain if youve just started self hosting things but its a decent way to get started.

There are Windows and Linux installs. I’ve only tried them as a TrueNAS Scale app and its adequate for a simpler use case.

Just buy and rip your own audio CDs and stream it yourself. You dictate the library and the quality of songs.

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I didn’t specify it in the post, but most of the recommendations I used came from those exact discussions… unfortunately they either stopped updating or deviated from the original topic and discussed something else.

SpoTube seems like my best choice, for now. Hopefully they will consider it; in the meanwhile moving everything from Spotify will keep me occupied. Thank you!

Unfortunately I’m not really in a position where I can self-host now… Right now, using Spotify + local songs seems just way comfortable than setting up an entire server exclusively for some songs. But when I’ll have the resources necessary to self-host other things as well, it’s definitely an option I will consider. Thank you!

I just found Monophony which seems nice if you’re on linux

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I’m not on Linux but I’m planning to move soon, so it seems like a great place to start.

Just to update: I’m still using Spotube on Windows, but it has some major bugs that keep reappearing every update. So… Hopefully Monophony will solve my problems, otherwise Spotube is still available on Linux. I would recommend using it since it’s the only one being updated regularly and with a large enough userbase.

Consider perhaps? Needs an Apple ID of course but it’s better than Spotify, privacy-wise.

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Not sure if you’d be fine with something like this, but piracy might be the best option for you while being more private than 99% of streaming services. If you’re interested I can explain further.

If you don’t want to pirate for whatever reason (no shame, everyone has different ethics & morals) then compare the bigger streaming services’ privacy policy and choose the one which best fits you.


Unfortunately Apple isn’t really my jam; there isn’t really anything wrong with it, I just don’t like the whole ecosystem. I will always keep it as my last resort in case anything fails, but for the moment Spotube will do. Thank you though!

I’m interested in new solutions, but to make a moral/ethical choice on yours I would need to hear more. So please, go on!

Try ViMusic. It’s FOSS, ad-free, and pulls songs from youtube music. There’s no logging in either, so it’s basically anonymous. And unlike Nuclear, it works very well.

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This is a great app, I also saw it recommended many times throughout my research! But…

I personally need a PC option to properly use it. It’s a shame it doesn’t have that; I also saw from the Github that last update was late 2022 and latest commit was six months ago for fixing grammar mistakes, so it’s not even that updated… But thank you for the recommendation!

I replaced spotify with this YT music client and have been happy. Don’t have to login if you don’t want (I don’t) and it blocks ads.

Spotify always sucked for me for variety. I get much more with YT music.

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I mostly use my Jellyfin server with Symfonium (paid, and closed source afaik), but as a youtube music front end Ive been pretty happy with InnerTune.

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Just downloaded it again to try again, but you still need a login to even have a playlist. Am I missing something?

Yeah, personal server with an app is the best solution.

No desktop option available! It’s a toss-up between ViMusic and InnerTune for best Android app though.