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View Full Version : Squeezebox3 seems very buggy



shawkie
2006-02-04, 11:14
I've just bought a new Squeezebox3 and I can't believe how buggy it seems to be. I'm pretty sure I'm going to be sending it back.

1) Fast forward doesn't work on WMA lossy (CBR or VBR) files. It says Scanning 2X but the audio stops and the progress bar doesn't move. Pressing play causes playback causes it to stop saying Scanning 2X but still no audio. Pressing play again causes playback to start from the beginning of the track.

2) Fast forward on FLAC and WAV causes the progress bar to stop working properly. It counting from 0 again towards the end of the track. It sorts itself out at the start of the next track. I also don't particularly like the way you have to press, hold and then release the button to make it do fast forward or fast forward faster. It would have been much better if the remote had individual buttons for fast forward and track advance. Failing that maybe the longer you hold the button for the faster it goes?

3) Rewind (on WAV and possibly FLAC) just after a track advance causes it to say Scanning -2X but the audio stops and the progress bar doesn't move. Pressing play causes playback to resume.

4) By default WAV gets transcoded to FLAC for no good reason. You save ~25% bandwidth but lose the ability to fast forward or rewind and plus use up CPU time on the server.

5) Playing WMA VBR files on the squeezebox sometimes introduces artifacts. They are not present if the files are transcoded to WAV or FLAC on the server.

6) Sometimes trying to select an internet radio station on the squeezebox with the remote won't work but the same station can be selected using the web interface.

7) In the browse by folder menu using the alphanumeric keys to quickly jump to a particular letter doesn't work properly. The PQRS TUV and WXYZ buttons cause it to get into a state where none of the buttons work correctly. You have to back out of the menu to fix it (and then it only works until you press one of those buttons again). This behaviour doesn't happen when browsing by artist or album.

I don't think any of my problems are caused by networking issues. I have 80% signal strength and never have any kind of dropouts. All the things I have seen are completely repeatable.

I'm using SlimServer 6.2.1 on Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 with SP2.

So are all these problems likely to get fixed anytime soon or is my Squeezebox3 heading back to the supplier?

JJZolx
2006-02-04, 11:24
I've just bought a new Squeezebox3 and I can't believe how buggy it seems to be.
Give it a little time. It'll grow on you.

Patrick Dixon
2006-02-04, 11:34
Some of them may already be fixed - try a 6.2 nightly.

WMA support was new in 6.1 so the bugs may well be sorted (I don't know 'cos I don't use it).

2) fair comment on the button operation, but there is a plugin that allows you to jump to any point in a song I think. Maybe that would work for you.

3) is correct - you have shuttled back to the start of the song and can't go any earlier.

4) if you don't like the default setting, just change it in Server Settings -> File Types by unchecking that particular conversion type. It's pretty easy to force it to stream the format you want.

7) I have seen something like this, but not for a while. If you get it after trying 6.2, either file a bug or post here and I'll file one!

shawkie
2006-02-04, 11:43
Thanks for your reply. I just tried the latest beta and it seems to have all the same bugs plus a new one.

8) After fast forwarding a WAV file and resuming playback it plays back okay for a few seconds and then becomes slow and choppy.

And some more comments

3) If you rewind from the middle of a track it is possible to rewind through the track break into the previous track. So why is this not possible from the start of a track?

7) This bug is definitely still present in both 6.2.1 and the latest beta.

autopilot
2006-02-04, 11:52
1) Fast forward doesn't work on WMA lossy (CBR or VBR) files. It says Scanning 2X but the audio stops and the progress bar doesn't move. Pressing play causes playback causes it to stop saying Scanning 2X but still no audio. Pressing play again causes playback to start from the beginning of the track.

2) Fast forward on FLAC and WAV causes the progress bar to stop working properly. It counting from 0 again towards the end of the track. It sorts itself out at the start of the next track. I also don't particularly like the way you have to press, hold and then release the button to make it do fast forward or fast forward faster. It would have been much better if the remote had individual buttons for fast forward and track advance. Failing that maybe the longer you hold the button for the faster it goes?

3) Rewind (on WAV and possibly FLAC) just after a track advance causes it to say Scanning -2X but the audio stops and the progress bar doesn't move. Pressing play causes playback to resume.


I have these exact same problems. I am hoping the problems are due to Slimserver and not the SB3. All the nightly beta's i have tried have been to buggy for me. Waiting for the proper 6.5 release to see if that helps.

Anyone know when 6.5 is due for release?

Michaelwagner
2006-02-04, 12:19
If you're new to the Squeezeboxes, a few comments are in order.

People on this list know most of this stuff, but forget that newcomers don't.

The Squeezebox is a "thin" client (the "slim" in the name), so there's not all that much in the box itself. A processor, a software DSP, stuff for the display, the DAC, some memory for a buffer, a network interface, power regulation, a few other things). Oh, the wireless card if you have a wireless one.

Most of the "decisions" are made in the server, which is open source and easily updated or modified.

Almost everything you wrote about is really coding in the server, not the squeezebox itself.

So when people say "it's not the squeezebox", what they mean is, it's not something that needs firmware updates, therefore it is easy to fix.

There are people on the list who can answer, in more details, whether what you're describing is a bug, whether it's been fixed in the beta releases already or not, and how to go about getting it fixed. One of the things that isn't clear about the squeezebox initially is that there are so many music formats, so many methods of accessing the server, etc, that not all options get properly checked out and sometimes bugs slip through.

PAUL WILLIAMSON
2006-02-04, 17:44
>> dangerous_dom.22py2b (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com 02/04/06 1:52 PM
>>>
>I have these exact same problems. I am hoping the problems are due
> to Slimserver and not the SB3. All the nightly beta's i have tried
> have been to buggy for me. Waiting for the proper 6.5 release to
> see if that helps.
>
> Anyone know when 6.5 is due for release?

LOL. That's some funny ish...the HTML for the browser control is
barely working right. I doubt it will be anytime soon. I would bet
that 6.2 train will be working without flaw (or close) first.

All these bugs sound like they're already reported. I can't look at
bugzilla, but if they aren't reported, they can't get fixed.

shawkie
2006-02-05, 06:09
If you're new to the Squeezeboxes, a few comments are in order.

People on this list know most of this stuff, but forget that newcomers don't.

The Squeezebox is a "thin" client (the "slim" in the name), so there's not all that much in the box itself. A processor, a software DSP, stuff for the display, the DAC, some memory for a buffer, a network interface, power regulation, a few other things). Oh, the wireless card if you have a wireless one.

Most of the "decisions" are made in the server, which is open source and easily updated or modified.

Almost everything you wrote about is really coding in the server, not the squeezebox itself.

So when people say "it's not the squeezebox", what they mean is, it's not something that needs firmware updates, therefore it is easy to fix.

There are people on the list who can answer, in more details, whether what you're describing is a bug, whether it's been fixed in the beta releases already or not, and how to go about getting it fixed. One of the things that isn't clear about the squeezebox initially is that there are so many music formats, so many methods of accessing the server, etc, that not all options get properly checked out and sometimes bugs slip through.

Okay, I've looked at the bugzilla database (scary reading) and thought I'd update my comments a bit.

1) This is listed as #571 although this report dates from before the SB could do native wma.

2) This is listed as #2486 and #1191.

3) This is not listed.

4) Personally, I think WAV should not be transcoded by default but I don't really care since its configurable.

5) This is not listed and is the most serious in my opinion.

6) This is not listed but also seems to have stopped happening. Not quite sure what changed.

7) This is not listed. My guess is that it sometimes forgets its dealing with a sorted list.

8) I think this only happens in the 6.5 beta so it doesn't really count.

If I can create a login for bugzilla I will add bug reports for 3, 5 and 7.

shawkie
2006-02-05, 08:16
Yet another update.

5) The artifacts are actually gaps introduced by the squeezebox (or slimserver?). Not entirely suprising. I've tested it with the same track at different bitrates. At 178kbps (avg?) I just get a couple of (relatively) long gaps near the start of the track. At 448kbps (avg?) I get longer gaps near the start and small gaps at fairly regular intervals all the way through the track. I guess thats logical. But why does it play perfectly when transcoded to WAV which is 1440kbps?

Marc Sherman
2006-02-05, 09:24
shawkie wrote:
>
> 8) I think this only happens in the 6.5 beta so it doesn't really
> count.
>
> If I can create a login for bugzilla I will add bug reports for 3, 5
> and 7.

File a bug for 8 too, just make sure you note that it's new in 6.5.

- Marc

Michaelwagner
2006-02-05, 09:25
I can't look at bugzilla
Why not? It's open to everyone.

Marc Sherman
2006-02-05, 09:26
Marc Sherman wrote:
>
> File a bug for 8 too, just make sure you note that it's new in 6.5.

.... and while you're there, vote for the other bugs you discovered
already filed, to indicate your interest in seeing them fixed, and also
to subscribe to status changes on the bugs to keep track of them.

- Marc

Michaelwagner
2006-02-05, 09:27
If I can create a login for bugzilla I will add bug reports for 3, 5 and 7.
You can. Please do.

Michaelwagner
2006-02-05, 09:52
while you're there, vote for the other bugs you discovered already filed, to indicate your interest in seeing them fixed, and also to subscribe to status changes on the bugs to keep track of them.
I think if you vote for a bug, you're automatically subscribed. But check just to be sure ... I may be mis-remembering.

Christian Pernegger
2006-02-05, 11:42
> 4) By default WAV gets transcoded to FLAC for no good reason. You save
> ~25% bandwidth but lose the ability to fast forward or rewind and plus
> use up CPU time on the server.

FWIW, you can disable that in the file types section of server settings.

C.

PAUL WILLIAMSON
2006-02-05, 17:24
>>> Michaelwagner.22rlsb (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com 02/05/06 11:25 AM
>>>
> PAUL WILLIAMSON Wrote:
> > I can't look at bugzilla
>Why not? It's open to everyone.

Because (at that point) the proxy server at work was down. I
only had e-mail... ;-)

Paul

slimdemage
2006-02-06, 10:19
I ran into a number of the exact same problems, then returned the Squeezebox3 after too many wireless dropouts and crashes. They are claiming my unit had a "bad" wireless card. Perhaps your unit is defective. Isn't fun paying $300 to test this product? It's like a hobby! I am still really looking forward to a working wireless music setup, someday.

CardinalFang
2006-02-06, 13:14
I ran into a number of the exact same problems, then returned the Squeezebox3 after too many wireless dropouts and crashes. They are claiming my unit had a "bad" wireless card. Perhaps your unit is defective. Isn't fun paying $300 to test this product? It's like a hobby! I am still really looking forward to a working wireless music setup, someday.

I must admit I can see both sides to this. I bought into the community and open source nature of SlimDevices because I like to tweak and modify my setup, but I can also see how someone seeing the SB in a review would not expect to have to touch a damn thing after installation.

There is a dilemma here, to be more successful for those people who want to install and leave alone, then it has to be a lot more solid out of the box. No matter how many times you can point to inferior products, that doesn't make this one better. At the same time it still has to appeal to the community that contribute and therefore be fast moving.


I personally think the answer is to have much more solid and well-tested releases for more general users, rather than enthusiasts. These would be updated a lot less often and be more rigorously QA'd. The nuts like me who like to live on the bleeding edge can carry our with the nightlies and betas and scratch our heads when it doesn't work. I know it's kind of like this already, but I think the builds for people who don't want to fiddle need to be more robust. The fact that Roku are tied to products like iTunes gives them that.

Paul

Michaelwagner
2006-02-06, 15:39
I think many (most?) of us can see that it could be a better experience for people out of the box. I'm just not sure how to get there. And I'm sure there are many different ideas on how to get there.

Dan Sully
2006-02-06, 15:54
* Michaelwagner shaped the electrons to say...

>I think many (most?) of us can see that it could be a better experience
>for people out of the box. I'm just not sure how to get there. And I'm
>sure there are many different ideas on how to get there.

One of the things I'm working on in my copious spare time(tm) is a Setup
Wizard - which will hopefully answer questions and be a lot more use friendly
than what exists today.

-D
--
I'm really looking forward to this hangover.

Michaelwagner
2006-02-06, 16:29
One of the things I'm working on in my copious spare time(tm) [...] I'm really looking forward to this hangover.
I bet those 2 go together ...


a Setup Wizard - which will hopefully answer questions and be a lot more use friendly than what exists today.

This sounds like a good idea. Some of the options could use better explanations and a wizard-like sequential walk-through model.

joek
2006-02-07, 11:12
I must admit I can see both sides to this. I bought into the community and open source nature of SlimDevices because I like to tweak and modify my setup, but I can also see how someone seeing the SB in a review would not expect to have to touch a damn thing after installation.

There is a dilemma here, to be more successful for those people who want to install and leave alone, then it has to be a lot more solid out of the box. No matter how many times you can point to inferior products, that doesn't make this one better. At the same time it still has to appeal to the community that contribute and therefore be fast moving.


I personally think the answer is to have much more solid and well-tested releases for more general users, rather than enthusiasts. These would be updated a lot less often and be more rigorously QA'd. The nuts like me who like to live on the bleeding edge can carry our with the nightlies and betas and scratch our heads when it doesn't work. I know it's kind of like this already, but I think the builds for people who don't want to fiddle need to be more robust. The fact that Roku are tied to products like iTunes gives them that.

Paul

Well put! Having a stable turnkey solution is appealing for the consumer who simply wants to play their encoded music on their stereo. May be not a whole lot of options and features, but easy configuration, setup and operation.

At the same time, having the SB and slimserver pieces available for "hackers" to make code changes or enhancements is appealing to a different group of consumers.

As an example, TiVo boxes can be hacked and modifications made (voids warranty) or you can simply enjoy the system the way it was designed.

CardinalFang
2006-02-07, 13:17
This sounds like a good idea. Some of the options could use better explanations and a wizard-like sequential walk-through model.

I agree - and with it a much simpler interface with very few options to change. Most new users shouldn't need to go anywhere near the web interface. It all should work through the SB screen and remote to get started, which I know it does, but make it really, really robust, even if that means taking out features for the majority of users. SlimServerLite to coin a phrase. It's not as fully featured, but there's a lot less to go wrong...

Paul

Ben Sandee
2006-02-07, 13:34
<snip>

On 2/7/06, CardinalFang <CardinalFang.22vljb (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com>
wrote:
>
> but make it really, really robust, even
> if that means taking out features for the majority of users.
>

Now there's a way to alienate your enthusiast community!

Michaelwagner
2006-02-07, 13:36
SlimServerLite to coin a phrase.
Or SlimServer, Training Wheel edition :-)

Michaelwagner
2006-02-07, 14:02
Now there's a way to alienate your enthusiast community!
It's a difficult line to tread well.

ceejay
2006-02-07, 14:56
It's a difficult line to tread well.

Not so hard if you can do it as a beginner mode / expert mode arrangement (ie its all there if you want it, but you can operate in a simple mode if you want).

Or, if I interpret Dan's post correctly, don't take any functionality out but just add a Wizard to help beginners get most of the settings into a sensible starting position.

Ceejay

Dan Sully
2006-02-07, 15:22
* ceejay shaped the electrons to say...

>Or, if I interpret Dan's post correctly, don't take any functionality
>out but just add a Wizard to help beginners get most of the settings
>into a sensible starting position.

Yes - because most users don't know what to do when dumped into the Default
skin. A little guidance is all that's needed. And feedback to the user, which
we're really bad at. Like telling them that we're scanning, approximately how
long it will take, and when we're done. Oh, and that they really shouldn't
try playing music until we're done - as it's a bad user experience.

-D
--
Off the record, on the QT, and very hush-hush.

CardinalFang
2006-02-07, 15:33
Not so hard if you can do it as a beginner mode / expert mode arrangement (ie its all there if you want it, but you can operate in a simple mode if you want).

Or, if I interpret Dan's post correctly, don't take any functionality out but just add a Wizard to help beginners get most of the settings into a sensible starting position.

Ceejay

I agree if taking stuff out poses the risk of breaking things, which it usually does. But I'd be quite interested myself in a stripped down server - would it perfrom better? Perhaps not, but it may use less resources and load faster.

I don't know the architecture of the server well enough to be able to know the impact of extra functionality. Does it have zero effect if not being used, or are the code paths more complex even if things are turned off?

Paul

CardinalFang
2006-02-07, 15:38
<snip>

On 2/7/06, CardinalFang <CardinalFang.22vljb (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com>
wrote:
>
> but make it really, really robust, even
> if that means taking out features for the majority of users.
>

Now there's a way to alienate your enthusiast community!

Why, if the majority of users don't want it and just want plug and play, why leave it in their version? The enthusiasts can still have all the bells and whistles in their version, can't they? Lets face it most people don't use most of the features of most equipment and the best designs don't punish them for not using those features. It's home vs pro editions of the software, and it can be from the same code base.

It begs the question - what is the ratio of enthusiasts versus average consumers who buy SBs? If there is, or the potential for, many more Joe Consumers than tweakers, then SlimServer should get packaged and adjusted to fit that need.

Paul

Wirrunna
2006-02-07, 17:19
As a new Squeezebox 3 owner (as a result of the SilentPCReview.com review) I agree with CardinalFang, I just wanted and expected plug 'n play.
I used iTunes to rip my collection of 600 CDs into Apple Lossless, created a few playlists, installed the Squeezebox and away it went (after I configured the fine print items in the server).
A wizard to guide me through the configuration (as suggested by Dan Sully) would have got the iTunes playlists across to Slimserver a bit quicker.
In time I may start to play with the bells and whistles, but for now the searches work fine and are all I use. As for Internet radio, down here in Oztralia the Internet providors give you a maximum amount of data per month before either charging for excess or restricting your bandwidth to 64K, so I have not even attempted to use this functionality.

treble
2006-02-07, 23:26
Simplicity is great.

Before I had my SB3 I used the Tivo to stream music to my stereo. But the SB3 sounds a lot better. But unfortunately it is a lot less 'user-friendly'. My wife still uses the Tivo interface (MusicMagic) only. And it is indeed easier to use. I would be happy if I would just see the same thing on my SB3 as TiVo sees from the MMM interface:

Instant Mix
Playlists
Artists
Albums
Genres
Filters

THe INstant Mix gives a random MMM mix (which is fast on TiVO). My random mix on SB3 starts after about 5 seconds, on TiVo basically instantaneously (same music library).

The Artist are in multiple folders of similar number of entries. Instead of having to scroll from A to Q if you want to listen to Queen, you can just scroll down to the folder with Queen in it. Probably 5-10 click on the remote at the most.

So, in short, maybe not TiVo but MusicMagic did a great job to make my music readily available with a couple of clicks.

For those who want internet radio, RSS, and whatever, just add some more categories. But keep it simple and especially FAST!

crapulent
2006-02-08, 00:23
as an old school SliMp3 user, I say quit your whining! Just kidding, I'm
gratified to see a once obscure device and software combo become what it
has, a frustration to a larger user base.

On 2/7/06, treble <treble.22wepb (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com> wrote:
>
>
> Simplicity is great.
>
> Before I had my SB3 I used the Tivo to stream music to my stereo. But
> the SB3 sounds a lot better. But unfortunately it is a lot less
> 'user-friendly'. My wife still uses the Tivo interface (MusicMagic)
> only. And it is indeed easier to use. I would be happy if I would
> just see the same thing on my SB3 as TiVo sees from the MMM interface:
>
> Instant Mix
> Playlists
> Artists
> Albums
> Genres
> Filters
>
> THe INstant Mix gives a random MMM mix (which is fast on TiVO). My
> random mix on SB3 starts after about 5 seconds, on TiVo basically
> instantaneously (same music library).
>
> The Artist are in multiple folders of similar number of entries.
> Instead of having to scroll from A to Q if you want to listen to Queen,
> you can just scroll down to the folder with Queen in it. Probably 5-10
> click on the remote at the most.
>
> So, in short, maybe not TiVo but MusicMagic did a great job to make my
> music readily available with a couple of clicks.
>
> For those who want internet radio, RSS, and whatever, just add some
> more categories. But keep it simple and especially FAST!
>
>
> --
> treble
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
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> View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=20773
>
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