PDA

View Full Version : Taking th plunge?



sammie
2005-10-26, 22:08
Ok, all set to order the new squeeze box 3, have it modded by Boulder Cable, and get to work burning my entire CD Collection w/ EAC. But this is all new to me, so I need some answers to a lot of questions and nudges in the right direction.

I own a laptop with a 60GB HD. Not enough for the music collection...so, I'll need to buy an external HD. I was looking at 300GB Maxtor drives. I have no idea what kind of DVD RW drive I have. I have read that Plextor DVD drives will burn better quality copies. I have wireless router located in basement (I live in an old house, no cable outlets upstairs).

#1 Does the HD need to be plugged into the computer or can I place it downstairs next to router + plug it into the router?
#2 Is the wireless network cabable of handling streaming large music files, like full tracks from burned CD?
#3 Does computer need to be turned on to listen to burned CD's on HD if HD is plugged into router?
#4 Is this a reliable way to listen to music, or am I setting myself up for frustration?
#5 Is it neccessary to buy Plextor drive or will the drive I have now do just fine?

I apologize if any or all of the questions have previously been answered and are available somewhere on this site. I did some snooping, but could not find answers such as these. Thanks for attention and help.

seanadams
2005-10-26, 22:45
#1 Does the HD need to be plugged into the computer or can I place it downstairs next to router + plug it into the router?


computer



#2 Is the wireless network cabable of handling streaming large music files, like full tracks from burned CD?


Almost always yes, no problem with SB3. (802.11b often had difficulty with full CD data rates, but 802.11g does great)



#3 Does computer need to be turned on to listen to burned CD's on HD if HD is plugged into router?


Forget about connecting the HD to the router unless you i) have a router that supports this and ii) have a lot of time to spend getting it to work (I'm assuming that ease of setup is important).



#4 Is this a reliable way to listen to music, or am I setting myself up for frustration?


For me, it's a hell of a lot more reliable than CDs! The reason I got started on these products is because I was lugging big CD binders from home to the car to the office, and not only tired of not having the music I wanted available, but also pissed off when CDs inevitably got scratched, pitted, lost, never returned by friends, etc. Squeezebox is more convenient, more reliable, and (in certain cases) even better soundind than CDs.



#5 Is it neccessary to buy Plextor drive or will the drive I have now do just fine?


Plextor earned a great reputation early on, because their drives were better at ripping than others. These days however, I don't see any indication that their drives are better than anyone else's at ripping.



I apologize if any or all of the questions have previously been answered and are available somewhere on this site. I did some snooping, but could not find answers such as these. Thanks for attention and help.

Au contraire, great questions.

abdomen
2005-10-26, 22:46
Ok, all set to order the new squeeze box 3, have it modded by Boulder Cable, and get to work burning my entire CD Collection w/ EAC. But this is all new to me, so I need some answers to a lot of questions and nudges in the right direction.

I own a laptop with a 60GB HD. Not enough for the music collection...so, I'll need to buy an external HD. I was looking at 300GB Maxtor drives. I have no idea what kind of DVD RW drive I have. I have read that Plextor DVD drives will burn better quality copies. I have wireless router located in basement (I live in an old house, no cable outlets upstairs).

#1 Does the HD need to be plugged into the computer or can I place it downstairs next to router + plug it into the router?
#2 Is the wireless network cabable of handling streaming large music files, like full tracks from burned CD?
#3 Does computer need to be turned on to listen to burned CD's on HD if HD is plugged into router?
#4 Is this a reliable way to listen to music, or am I setting myself up for frustration?
#5 Is it neccessary to buy Plextor drive or will the drive I have now do just fine?

I apologize if any or all of the questions have previously been answered and are available somewhere on this site. I did some snooping, but could not find answers such as these. Thanks for attention and help.
Terminology note: When you refer to "burning" your CD collection, you should be saying "ripping" or "extracting". Try the drive you have before you buy anything else; EAC in Secure mode will let you know whether or not there are problems. Assuming decent signal strength and no excessive interference, even an 802.11b (as opposed to 802.11g) wireless network will easily accommodate one or more streaming FLAC files ripped from CD. I am supposing the drive you are looking at is an external USB drive. In this case, it will be plugged into your laptop, and your laptop will need to be on and running Slimserver in order for you to be able to listen to your music collection.

abdomen
2005-10-26, 22:50
Beat to the punch by the man himself. :)
I rescind my overconfident portrayal of 802.11b in light of Sean's more educated statement.

MrC
2005-10-26, 22:53
You will be setting yourself up for frustration if you don't get a few things clear first.

1) You're not going to be plugging your HD into your router - it will be connected to your laptop.
2) A wireless connection doesn't care how large files are - it either works reliably or it doesn't, and this is all a matter of your own personal circumstances. Many have no problems with wireless, others are not so fortunate.
3) Computer needs to be on to listen to your CDs. It does not need to be on to listen to internet radio via SqueezeNetwork
4) Very reliable. I setup an SB2 for my wife in your home work room, and she loves it.
5) Any drive you have for now is fine. If you feel later you need to upgrade for whatever reason, do what you feel's best.

Do yourself a favor and download slimserver, install it, and run the SoftSqueeze app. Rip a couple of CDs in whatever format you desire to start, and you'll be ready and able to stream your ripped CDs to SoftSqueeze (which will feel very much like the SB3 you want to purchase). This will get you into the waters, without jumping head first.

seanadams
2005-10-26, 22:55
BTW home routers are gradually moving towards the ability to connect hard disks and run useful software on them. I do think that this is the future, but today it's not fully baked.

MrC
2005-10-26, 22:59
BTW home routers are gradually moving towards the ability to connect hard disks and run useful software on them. I do think that this is the future, but today it's not fully baked.
Yes, these "appliances" do more and more.

JJZolx
2005-10-26, 23:14
Ok, all set to order the new squeeze box 3, have it modded by Boulder Cable, and get to work burning my entire CD Collection w/ EAC. But this is all new to me, so I need some answers to a lot of questions and nudges in the right direction.
See Wayne's statements in his forum over at Audio Circle. He seems to think that the SB3 maybe less friendly to modding due to less space within the case for components. I'm not sure he's actually seen the insides of one yet, though.


I own a laptop with a 60GB HD. Not enough for the music collection...so, I'll need to buy an external HD. I was looking at 300GB Maxtor drives. I have no idea what kind of DVD RW drive I have. I have read that Plextor DVD drives will burn better quality copies.
Burning copies is really a separate issue from setting up your music network. You don't need a CD burner to extract (or "rip") the digital files from your CDs.


I have wireless router located in basement (I live in an old house, no cable outlets upstairs).

#1 Does the HD need to be plugged into the computer or can I place it downstairs next to router + plug it into the router?
You can do this, but you'll need additional hardware other than just a bare hard drive. This is generally called "Network Attached Storage" (NAS) or sometimes a "network hard drive".

One example: http://westerndigital.com/en/products/Products.asp?DriveID=150&Language=en


#2 Is the wireless network cabable of handling streaming large music files, like full tracks from burned CD?
Yes, easily. Even 802.11b has 7x the bandwidth you need for streaming uncompressed WAV files (and more if you stream compressed FLAC). 802.11g is much better.


#3 Does computer need to be turned on to listen to burned CD's on HD if HD is plugged into router?
Yes. You must be running SlimServer on some computer. SlimServer is the brains. The idea behind the "Slim" Devices Squeezebox is that the playback box has minimal intelligence and most everything is controlled by SlimServer.


#4 Is this a reliable way to listen to music, or am I setting myself up for frustration?
It can be extremely reliable, although there can be bugaboos due to network interference and the odd problem that arises. I think you have to be prepared to deal with troubleshooting such problems, but can expect that 95% of Squeezebox users may never have any to deal with.


#5 Is it neccessary to buy Plextor drive or will the drive I have now do just fine?
Your drive will probably be fine. It may not be the fastest in the world at ripping CDs, but you can test that at any time. Get a different drive only if you need faster rips.

Mike Anderson
2005-10-27, 00:14
Thanks for attention and help.

By the way, for how many products can you get each and every answer to your questions provided by the friggin' CEO himself?

Dude, not too long ago, I was in the same position you were. Just buy a Squeezebox. Don't look back. And enjoy.

I love my Squeezebox; this thing kicks ass!

seanadams
2005-10-27, 00:19
By the way, for how many products can you get each and every answer to your questions provided by the friggin' CEO himself?

Some day other CE companies will disover this new INTARWEB, and how a single question answered publicly benefits hundreds more than just he who asked in the first place.

Neil Davidson
2005-10-27, 01:28
> seanadams Wrote:
> > BTW home routers are gradually moving towards the ability
> to connect
> > hard disks and run useful software on them. I do think that this is
> > the future, but today it's not fully baked.
> Yes, these "appliances" do more and more.
>
>

If you are going to be getting an external drive anyway, you might want to
look as some of the NAS (Network Attached Storage) solutions out there.
There are any number that will work perfectly (and are easy to set up) as a
basic file store. There are however some that will also host your slimserver
as well so you don't need a large PC to serve your Squeezebox, just a small
appliance style unit. There has been lots of discussion on this forum over
the past few days, have a search for Qnap TS-101 for starters.

These will be a bit pricier than a basic USB drive in a box, but for me they
are far more useful.

YMMV

pfarrell
2005-10-27, 05:17
Sammie, you have a few basic concepts a bit twisted.
Think about the name of the company. It is SlimDevices.
The name reflects a philosophy, the device does a very
few things very well.

For lots of things that we use it for, takes a real computer.
Not a new or fast one, but a computer. Most of the sexy
stuff is done on the computer, not within the SqueezeBox

On Wed, 2005-10-26 at 22:08 -0700, sammie wrote:
> #1 Does the HD need to be plugged into the computer or can I place it
> downstairs next to router + plug it into the router?

In your case, you want a computer with lots of disk space
in the same place. I'd suggest down stairs. Plug the disks into
the computer and plug the computer into the router.

> #2 Is the wireless network cabable of handling streaming large music
> files, like full tracks from burned CD?

Actually, data from a redbook CD is not considered large anymore.
With a SB3 and a modern 802.11g router, you should be fine.

> #3 Does computer need to be turned on to listen to burned CD's on HD
> if HD is plugged into router?

Most routers are not computers. Disks are used by computers.

> #4 Is this a reliable way to listen to music, or am I setting myself
> up for frustration?

Its great. I love it/them, I've bought three

> #5 Is it neccessary to buy Plextor drive or will the drive I have now
> do just fine?

Easyist approach is to try what you have and see. The CD drive is only
used once per CD to rip the music. If you find it doesn't work for
you, you can get a faster better CD.

I don't think using a laptop is a great long term approach.
They generally are limited in specs, unless they are new and expensive.
The computer can be a couple of years old and thus cheap.
I bought a new $400 computer that is way overkill for running the
SlimServer.

--
Pat
http://www.pfarrell.com/music/slimserver/slimsoftware.html

jplatner
2005-11-16, 12:43
I would really like to avoid required use of the computer to run slimserver / Squeezebox. any opinions on network hard drives and how easy to use they are with squeezebox? any advice?


some examples:
http://westerndigital.com/en/products/Products.asp?DriveID=150&Language=en

Qnap TS-101 200Gb & Slimserver

http://www.lacie.com/products/product.htm?pid=10057

Jim
2005-11-16, 15:28
Very easy to use. You plug them in and then realise they don't work. Easy.

A bit like trying to wash your clothes with a state of the art washning machine but no electricity.

As Pat said....you NEED a COMPUTER.

JJZolx
2005-11-16, 15:46
I would really like to avoid required use of the computer to run slimserver / Squeezebox. any opinions on network hard drives and how easy to use they are with squeezebox? any advice?


some examples:
http://westerndigital.com/en/products/Products.asp?DriveID=150&Language=en

Qnap TS-101 200Gb & Slimserver

http://www.lacie.com/products/product.htm?pid=10057
Won't work. There are a couple of NAS devices capable of running SlimServer on the device itself. Not the fastest systems in the world, but may be adequate. That would be your only option unless you're satisfied with using SqueezeNetwork and only being able to listen to streamed Internet radio, and not your own music.

See this thread for some ideas: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=17551

jplatner
2005-11-16, 21:13
got the point, thanks.
not a problem. i'll just run the pc.
thanks