Installing Winamp Plugins In AIMP

Martin Brinkmann
Oct 13, 2008
Updated • Feb 23, 2014
Music, Music and Video

If you look around and ask your friends which media player they prefer you will most likely come up with many different answers. Winamp, Windows Media Player and iTunes will surely be on the top of the list with lesser known players mentioned by some of the friends. Most are perfectly happy that they can play music on their computer without having to think about configuring the service first or tweaking it for maximum effectiveness.

AIMP is a music player that might not be mentioned that often. The main reason why that is the case is surely the Russian website that is keeping lots of users at bay. Some might spot the player on download portals like Softpedia and those are usually the ones who stick with it after installing and testing the player.

AIMP comes with an impressive design and functionality that leaves most music players behind. It is low on resource usage, provides an impressive sound, great design, an audio converter, CD ripper and Internet radio ripper among other things.

The official website contains a few plugins and skins that can be added to the player but one feature that the player excels in is the compatibility to many Winamp plugins.

One of the winners of a Ghacks t-shirt mentioned a few Winamp plugins that were keeping him from changing to AIMP. A quick research revealed that it was possible to add the plugins to AIMP as well. He mentioned the following three plugins: Minilyrics, DFX and Ozone.

The principle is basically the same for all plugins:

  • Download the plugin to the computer.
  • Try to extract it using a packer. If that is not working install it. All three plugins could be installed without having Winamp installed. Some might require Winamp though.
  • Go to the directory where the files have been extracted / installed into.
  • It is usually enough to copy the plugin dll files to the AIMP2/plugins directory. In the case of DFX it is the dsp_dfx.dll, for Ozone it is dsp_iZOzoneFree.dll while Minilyrics requires two: gen_MiniLyrics.dll and MiniLyrics.dll

A rule of thumb. If in doubt copy all files into the directory. AIMP will tell you if something is missing upon activation of the plugin. This is how you do that:

A click on the top left icon will display a menu. Choosing plugins from that menu will open the AIMP Plugin Manager which displays all loaded (meaning active) and unloaded plugins.

New plugins that have been placed in the plugins folder can be activated by selecting them with a left click and clicking on Load afterwards. You will see a message window if something is not right. If the wrong dll has been moved into the plugin directory no plugin will be shown under the Unloaded Plugins tab.

Some plugins, like the DSP ones, require activating in the options of AIMP. A click on the same icon that brought you into the Plugin Manager will also bring you in the DSP Manager. There you can select the Winamp DSP Plugin that has been previously loaded into AIMP.

Not all plugins will work but many will. It is just a matter of trying.


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  1. Justin said on November 30, 2011 at 10:18 am

    The warning message about AAC streams when you load streams is because you don’t have the free Orban AAC/aacPlus Player Plugin installed.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 30, 2011 at 10:56 am

      Justin, thanks for the information.

  2. santosh said on December 1, 2011 at 12:43 am

    does this support AAC ? or only mp3 streaming

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on December 1, 2011 at 1:43 am

      I’d say it supports all pls streams but I have not tried that so cannot verify it 100%.

  3. Barnabas said on August 3, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    Thank you Martin for a most informative and viable solution (it allowed me to play streams from a Netherland internet radio station in my WMP)! Continued success to you!

    Barnabas (USA)

  4. AppleRome said on October 7, 2012 at 7:31 am

    Your steps’ recommendation is still valid until 7th October 2012.. Thank you very much !!

  5. Laura said on December 1, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    Thank you!

  6. sak2005 said on December 9, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    You must convert file.pls to file.m3u
    because file.pls open with winamp and file.m3u open with wmp.

  7. Lithium said on February 10, 2017 at 11:10 am

    2017 still kicking on Windows 7
    Thx a ton

  8. Dennis said on April 18, 2017 at 4:05 am

    Hey, even i can do it, i stumbled through it and it works great! The only instruction advice i will add as i had to figure this out, when the wmp box opens that says save or open the bar on right says wmp click that drop down and select “open pls in wmp” once you do that it will work . Took me quite some time to discover that as i am no computer expert by any means. Having said that, previously i had downloaded codec packages and something about aac. None did any good. This rocks, i listen to a lot of internet radio and a number of them have dropped flash player and getting wmp to work had been a nightmare. So many thanks for this great solution to another problem that Micro-Hell will not even address. Peace- Out

  9. stephen marshall said on March 19, 2019 at 2:07 am

    openplsinwmp came in a zip file. I unpacked it, and didn’t find anything that looks like an executable, and even the files in the “doc” folder were in a format windows didn’t recognize. I’m not stupid. you said it would open effortlessly. It didn’t. This a rabbit hole I don’t want to go down.

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