IntroductionDebian is the universal operating system, but sometimes, it doesn't feel all that universal out of the box. For people looking for a top-notch multimedia experience, Debian might not seem like the best choice because of its free software policies, but it can actually be made into a multimedia powerhouse.
Debian Stretch, when combined with one super powered multimedia repository, is an awesome option for both audio and video playback.
Enable The RepositoryThe repository in question here is the deb-multimedia repository. It's maintained by a Debian developer, and includes more up-to-date multimedia packages as well as some non-free packages that didn't make it into Debian proper.
In order to add it to your system, add the line below to you
deb http://www.deb-multimedia.org stretch main non-freeAfter the repo is added, run an update with
# apt updateYou will receive a message complaining that there is no signing key for the repository. To remedy that run the command below.
# apt install deb-multimedia-keyringWith the keyring installed, you can update again. However, run a
dist-upgradetoo. This will upgrade any packages that you already have installed to newer versions in deb-multimedia. This includes switching to ffmpeg.
apt update && apt dist-upgrade
Codec and LibrariesSo, you've already gotten an upgrade to your playback capability in the form of ffmpeg. Deb-multimedia also offers some other options to enable a wider range of file formats.
GStreamerThere are several GStreamer plugins available through the repository. To install them, run the command below.
# apt install gstreamer1.0-libav gstreamer1.0-plugins-bad gstreamer1.0-vaapi
AudioFor MP3 playback and AAC, deb-multimedia has you covered as well.
# apt install lame libfaac0
DVDProper DVD playback capabilities don't come with Debian. In order to enable DVD playback, you need
libdvdcss. It too is available from deb-multimedia.
# apt install libdvdcss2
Blu RayBlu Ray is a tricky topic in Linux. It still isn't officially supported, but there has been some progress made, and there are many Blu Ray disks that play just fine under the right circumstances. The libraries needed to play those Blu Rays in Linux are available as well.
# apt install aacskeys libbdplus0 libbluray1
AudioThere are a couple of high quality music players available from the repository as well. They are both more minimal the some of the more robust options like Rhythmbox and Clementine, but have some great options for people who are more concerned with the quality of their music playback.
# apt install audacious audacious-plugins
# apt install deadbeef
VideoThough these two great video players are available from the Debian repositories, the versions from deb-mutimedia tend to be more up-to-date and have other available extras.
KodiKodi is the world's favorite open source media center. It really is an excellent one-stop solution for everything from music to playing local video, to even streaming. Install Kodi with the following command.
# apt install kodiThere are also a ton of addons for Kodi available. You can find them in the complete alphabetical list of deb-multimedia packages here.
VLCVLC is also a big-time favorite for video playback. VLC is more of a standalone video player that can play video from local sources or from a remote stream.
# apt install vlcThere are also plugins available for VLC from deb-multimedia
EditingThere are also audio and video production tools available through the multimedia repository.
AudacityFor audio editing, Audacity is a favorite of Linux and non-Linux users alike. It really is a top-notch solution for creating and editing sound files.
# apt install audacity
CinelerraFor editing video on Linux, Cinelerra is a great option. It may not be as full-featured as some other options, but it can certainly get the job done.
# apt install cinelerra