I’ve been following along with the improvements made by the MPlayer development team through their mailing list. When Fedora Core 4 came out there were some (I think many) issues with the choice to use GCC4 (the GNU Compiler). Many applications, such as MPlayer, were not yet supported. There were patches from other groups, but the MPlayer team did not officially support it. As usual I compiled from source, but I used GCC3.2. I’ve never had any problems.
A week ago I pulled a CVS snapshot through their website and decided to compile and test a developmental version to see anything new. I installed along side my current version of MPlayer v1.0pre7. (I used ----prefix=/opt/mplayercvs/ during the configure step.) It all seemed to work perfectly with GCC4. Some basic things I noticed were better support for some media formats and full support for many output plugins that didn’t work with the GCC3.2 workaround. Finally they also have ported the GUI to GTK2. The forever old (and still very poor) gui was using GTK1.2 and has now been deprecated. Although I don’t see any new features in the GUI, it is nice to finally have a consistent GTK/Gnome interface – fonts, themes and all.
Basically good progress, but not recommended for average users. I am looking forward to the new release, even though lately it seems Xine has seemed like a better alternative.