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damager
2009-08-25, 07:29
I wanted to thank everyone on this board for all their support and assistance over the past years with my Squeezebox setup. I ended up with 3 Booms, 2 Duets, and 1 SB3.

Unfortunately, I'm tired of the constant tinkering necessary to keep this all working. The Duets have been especially troublesome. While I initially loved the many opportunities to customize and hack around, I'm now just looking for something to work, and work reliably both for me and my family.

I'm replacing my setup with Sonos. I totally get that I'll be losing significant customization potential, and I really dislike the fact that their units don't have any information display capability (i.e. no "Now Playing" on the unit itself), but for someone who just wants the system to reliably work, this seems the way to go.

Once again - thanks. The energy and spirit of cooperation on this board has been amazing, and much appreciated.

froth
2009-08-25, 08:43
To each his / her own. I stayed away from the Duet and have to say my system is very stable and requires little to no work at all. I have 1 boom and 2 SB Classics's and am looking to add at least 2 more SB devices in the near future. All my children and as well my wife have no issues using the technology. In fact, my children who have been on iPod crack for a while are now asking about moving their music to SqueezeCenter. Unfortunatly they have many DRM tracks but for the stuff that is not DRM we will be moving in the next month.

I will be adding iPeng into the mix this fall as we have a couple touches and an iphone in the house as well. I am just going through the purchasing of a wireless extender to allow me to provide service to my shop which is a very long way from my house.

Good luck with the Sonos. I do think in some ways their system may be less prone to the need to tweak, but then again, I also have heard the stories that people have had issues with the technology as well. I like the idea that I can tweak if I want and I have a little. I have the local weather showing on the boom in the kitchen and this took all of minutes to configure.

regalma1
2009-08-25, 08:46
If only Sonos had a better controller. One that showed a larger piece of the library, then I would probably join you.

Though for now my SC has been pretty stable, finally. I am keeping my fingers crossed. I don't think I will be risking any FW upgrades though. And I avoided the Duet. Figured since the SB took so long to settle down the Duet should be pretty rough for a few years ;) Actually, I don't like the controller.

damager
2009-08-25, 09:52
To each his / her own. I stayed away from the Duet and have to say my system is very stable and requires little to no work at all. I have 1 boom and 2 SB Classics's and am looking to add at least 2 more SB devices in the near future. All my children and as well my wife have no issues using the technology. In fact, my children who have been on iPod crack for a while are now asking about moving their music to SqueezeCenter. Unfortunatly they have many DRM tracks but for the stuff that is not DRM we will be moving in the next month.

I will be adding iPeng into the mix this fall as we have a couple touches and an iphone in the house as well. I am just going through the purchasing of a wireless extender to allow me to provide service to my shop which is a very long way from my house.

Good luck with the Sonos. I do think in some ways their system may be less prone to the need to tweak, but then again, I also have heard the stories that people have had issues with the technology as well. I like the idea that I can tweak if I want and I have a little. I have the local weather showing on the boom in the kitchen and this took all of minutes to configure.

Thanks for your comments. I'm in no way meaning to bash the Squeezebox products - I've used them for many years, and really like them. I think alot of my issue is caused by the relative high number of issues with the Duet, which, unfortunately, was the main device my family was using.

ddewey
2009-08-25, 09:55
Quoting damager (damager.3xhhbz1251219241 (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com):

>
> froth;451642 Wrote:
> > To each his / her own. I stayed away from the Duet and have to say my
> > system is very stable and requires little to no work at all. I have 1
> > boom and 2 SB Classics's and am looking to add at least 2 more SB
> > devices in the near future. All my children and as well my wife have no
> > issues using the technology. In fact, my children who have been on iPod
> > crack for a while are now asking about moving their music to
> > SqueezeCenter. Unfortunatly they have many DRM tracks but for the stuff
> > that is not DRM we will be moving in the next month.
> >
> > I will be adding iPeng into the mix this fall as we have a couple
> > touches and an iphone in the house as well. I am just going through the
> > purchasing of a wireless extender to allow me to provide service to my
> > shop which is a very long way from my house.
> >
> > Good luck with the Sonos. I do think in some ways their system may be
> > less prone to the need to tweak, but then again, I also have heard the
> > stories that people have had issues with the technology as well. I like
> > the idea that I can tweak if I want and I have a little. I have the
> > local weather showing on the boom in the kitchen and this took all of
> > minutes to configure.
>
> Thanks for your comments. I'm in no way meaning to bash the Squeezebox
> products - I've used them for many years, and really like them. I think
> alot of my issue is caused by the relative high number of issues with
> the Duet, which, unfortunately, was the main device my family was using.

You putting them up for sale? I might be tempted to replace my SB1
- last device on my network that's wep-only.

Goodsounds
2009-08-25, 11:07
I''ve stayed away from the Duet. 4 of your 6 devices were of the "most trouble-free" flavors, was your experience with those unsatisfactory too?


...I'm tired of the constant tinkering necessary to keep this all working....While I initially loved the many opportunities to customize and hack around...

Maybe your wounds were self-inflicted? I don't tinker or customize and I've had no problems to speak of, I just listen to music on a rock-solid system.

Too bad, but good luck

amcluesent
2009-08-25, 12:06
No shame in dumping the Receiver(s) on Ebay and getting the Touch when available.

Those Receivers were never as good as the Classic.

damager
2009-08-25, 12:40
Quoting damager (damager.3xhhbz1251219241 (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com):


You putting them up for sale? I might be tempted to replace my SB1
- last device on my network that's wep-only.

I'll be putting on EBay over the next few weeks.

damager
2009-08-25, 12:42
I''ve stayed away from the Duet. 4 of your 6 devices were of the "most trouble-free" flavors, was your experience with those unsatisfactory too?



Maybe your wounds were self-inflicted? I don't tinker or customize and I've had no problems to speak of, I just listen to music on a rock-solid system.

Too bad, but good luck

Really very little tinkering, except to try to get things to work reliably. The SB3 and Boom have been pretty good, except for bugs repeatedly introduced by new software releases. The Duet? Not so much. You "self-inflict" wounds just by buying one of these, I'm afraid.

damager
2009-08-25, 12:43
No shame in dumping the Receiver(s) on Ebay and getting the Touch when available.

Those Receivers were never as good as the Classic.

True, but I really wanted to go the "everything just works" route, even if it's more expensive.

I got the Sonos bundle today at noon. 2 zones were installed and I was playing music 20 mins later.

CardinalFang
2009-08-25, 13:36
I'm now just looking for something to work, and work reliably both for me and my family.

I still watch this site to see if there's something new to read about, but sadly gave up on Slim some time ago and moved to iTunes and digital out from a MacBook.

Why? The Slim system is so clunky and too geeky. My family just won't use it because the controller is slow to respond and you have to do so much tidying up of the database to get it back in line with iTunes (and before you comment, iTunes is universally loved by my family, almost as much as Spotify)

It was very disappointing to give up after several years, but user experience is such a big deal for me now, and whilst Slim is technically excellent, the feel is always too much like home built.

I did look at Sonos too, but it wasn't for me either, to expensive fo rwhat it is and forever associated in my mind with Paris Hilton...

damager
2009-08-25, 13:43
I still watch this site to see if there's something new to read about, but sadly gave up on Slim some time ago and moved to iTunes and digital out from a MacBook.

Why? The Slim system is so clunky and too geeky. My family just won't use it because the controller is slow to respond and you have to do so much tidying up of the database to get it back in line with iTunes (and before you comment, iTunes is universally loved by my family, almost as much as Spotify)

It was very disappointing to give up after several years, but user experience is such a big deal for me now, and whilst Slim is technically excellent, the feel is always too much like home built.

I did look at Sonos too, but it wasn't for me either, to expensive fo rwhat it is and forever associated in my mind with Paris Hilton...

Hah - I bought DESPITE the association with Paris!

My real reason for starting the thread was truly to say Thanks - there are alot of great people on this board who were extremely helpful - much appreciated.

And Sonos IS too damn expensive!

paulster
2009-08-25, 14:42
I find it a shame that you've felt compelled to move system because clearly you'd rather not and also because I've had a Duet system for just under a year now and have had no problem with it whatsoever.

I'll admit I'm antsy about some of the things I've read about in 7.3.4 but I've started on 7.2.1 and been through every version of SqueezeCenter until 7.3.3.

I did have some buffering issues at first, but I was using a Windows XP virtual machine while I decided exactly how I was going to implement my SqueezeCenter server for production, and this had a wireless hop to my router and then to the Receiver. Once I got my little Debian Linux machine up and running and ran an Ethernet cable at the same time it's been hiccup-free, and it is used for a good number of hours each day.

It makes me wonder whether the problem is all environmental (the comparatively poor reception on the WiFi antennas for example), or whether the Linux platform and the Duet are simply a much happier pairing than other combinations, but I am genuinely baffled by some of the complaints I see here regularly. I do believe them, but I don't understand how people can see such problems all the time and I see none. It's not like I haven't tried all of the software versions over a period of time either.

Good luck with the Sonos. I hope it resolves the problems for you.

damager
2009-08-25, 15:43
I find it a shame that you've felt compelled to move system because clearly you'd rather not and also because I've had a Duet system for just under a year now and have had no problem with it whatsoever.

I'll admit I'm antsy about some of the things I've read about in 7.3.4 but I've started on 7.2.1 and been through every version of SqueezeCenter until 7.3.3.

I did have some buffering issues at first, but I was using a Windows XP virtual machine while I decided exactly how I was going to implement my SqueezeCenter server for production, and this had a wireless hop to my router and then to the Receiver. Once I got my little Debian Linux machine up and running and ran an Ethernet cable at the same time it's been hiccup-free, and it is used for a good number of hours each day.

It makes me wonder whether the problem is all environmental (the comparatively poor reception on the WiFi antennas for example), or whether the Linux platform and the Duet are simply a much happier pairing than other combinations, but I am genuinely baffled by some of the complaints I see here regularly. I do believe them, but I don't understand how people can see such problems all the time and I see none. It's not like I haven't tried all of the software versions over a period of time either.

Good luck with the Sonos. I hope it resolves the problems for you.

My experience is that there are too many releases, and too little testing. I guess the way to deal with it is to just refuse to go on any new release until it has been out for awhile.

Clearly the Duet is a bit of a bi-polar product - it either works perfectly and people love it (and I love the overall design), or it is problematic and drives people nuts. Both of mine were the later. The issues MAY have been environmental in nature (who knows), but I got tired of dealing with all the variables to figure it out, especially since it would work fine about 50% of the time and not work at all on other days.

The Booms and SB3's were more reliable, but still not bulletproof. Now that I've played with the Sonos a bit, I like what I see except for one thing. On every Squeezebox product, there is a readout (on the front or on the controller) with info such as Now Playing. There is no such thing on any Sonos unit (except, of course, the controller).

egd
2009-08-25, 19:07
Whilst in my experience the Duet has been an absolute disaster (admittedly, it has improved, but it was definitely not even close to ready for market when launched and getting it stable has taken so long I'd suggest its a failed product) I cannot say the same of my SB3s, nor my Transporter.

I've also found that with all the software releases (which is a good thing) there is a constant temptation to upgrade, and that can and does lead to stability issues. To this end I've learned the hard way - experiment with a non production installation and leave your production installation alone until you're sure the next release operates as you require it to and is stable. There is nothing worse than wanting to settle into a listening session only to have issues getting things working. Instant bad mood! The only way to avoid that is to avoid upgradealitis. This approach btw, is no different to releasing software in a commercial environment - it's tested and proven in its intended environment before deployment to production...for pretty much the same reasons too.

damager
2009-08-25, 19:49
Whilst in my experience the Duet has been an absolute disaster (admittedly, it has improved, but it was definitely not even close to ready for market when launched and getting it stable has taken so long I'd suggest its a failed product) I cannot say the same of my SB3s, nor my Transporter.

I've also found that with all the software releases (which is a good thing) there is a constant temptation to upgrade, and that can and does lead to stability issues. To this end I've learned the hard way - experiment with a non production installation and leave your production installation alone until you're sure the next release operates as you require it to and is stable. There is nothing worse than wanting to settle into a listening session only to have issues getting things working. Instant bad mood! The only way to avoid that is to avoid upgradealitis. This approach btw, is no different to releasing software in a commercial environment - it's tested and proven in its intended environment before deployment to production...for pretty much the same reasons too.

All good points. Except that I don't want to even think about a "non-production environment". I just want this thing to work without an IT Dept. I'm a CompSci major and a huge geek, but this stuff has to be bulletproof or I face the wrath of the family. I simply can't get to that point with the SB products right now.

maggior
2009-08-25, 20:19
I've also found that with all the software releases (which is a good thing) there is a constant temptation to upgrade, and that can and does lead to stability issues. To this end I've learned the hard way - experiment with a non production installation and leave your production installation alone until you're sure the next release operates as you require it to and is stable. There is nothing worse than wanting to settle into a listening session only to have issues getting things working. Instant bad mood! The only way to avoid that is to avoid upgradealitis. This approach btw, is no different to releasing software in a commercial environment - it's tested and proven in its intended environment before deployment to production...for pretty much the same reasons too.

Exactly! I've taken exactly this approach myself after losing out on valuable listening time to an effort to recover after installing a version of SC that didn't work well in my environment. Also, the entire family relies on this system now, so I'm not the only one impacted.

FWIW, I think the Duet has become quite stable at this point. As I've mentioned in other posts, my brother just purchased a Duet and had absolutely no troubles setting it up using 7.3.3, and he is no computer expert - though he knows he has me to support him if all goes south.

To the OP - best of luck with your new setup. Sorry to hear that the squeezebox products weren't able to meet your needs.

Andy8421
2009-08-25, 21:23
Damager,

I am very nearly in your camp. My Wife is of the 'throw that damn thing away and give me my wave radio back' school, but I have stuggled through and now have a system which is stable - most of the time. I have recommended squeeze proucts (the Duet unfortunately) to non technical friends (3) who have now all given up on the system and have it gathering dust in cupboards.

As an aging EE graduate who cut his teeth programming PDP-11s in binary from the front panel switches I have enjoyed learning about TCP/IP and wandering around my house with NetStumbler, but I think that raises real questions about whether the products are really ready for the mainstream. For those who care, my experience is:

Transporter (wired) - no problems
SB3 (wireless) - occasional problems
Duet (2 of them, wireless) hopeless until the last couple of releases, still not great
Boom (2 of them wireless) - occasional problems

Given the new products that Logitech seem to have in development (Radio, Touch) it does look as if their engineering smarts are being dragged away from software developing and fixing for existing products and are working on the new stuff. Development of the whole new database back end must also be a significant distraction. This is unfortunate, as most forums on the web(correctly in my opinion) describe the squeeze products as innovative, but really only suitable for geeks. I do think Logitech should focus on getting their existing line stable.

My next door neighbour has Sonos. In my opinion, it isn't cutting edge, looks clunky and has limited options. He had it professionaly installed, and says he has never had a single problem. My Wife would drop squeeze and get Sonos in a heartbeat. I just keep hoping that the next software release will fix all my problems........

egd
2009-08-25, 22:20
Transporter (wired) - no problems
SB3 (wireless) - occasional problems
Duet (2 of them, wireless) hopeless until the last couple of releases, still not great
Boom (2 of them wireless) - occasional problems

I should have mentioned, forget about wireless, it's the surest way to ensuring you're going to get pissed off at some point. I initially started with wireless and after stopping myself short of throwing an sb3 across the room I went wired (with netplugs) and haven't had any issues since. My only use for wireless at this stage is the UI which in my case is iPeng on my iPod Touch and iPhone.

dsdreamer
2009-08-25, 22:54
I should have mentioned, forget about wireless, it's the surest way to ensuring you're going to get pissed off at some point.

Sounds like you could use some kind of mesh network to increase robustness. Perhaps throw in a little MIMO technology to make it even more robust and far-reaching. Something like damager just installed, perhaps?

Sorry, normal SqueezeBox enthusiasm will be resumed as soon as possible.

bernt
2009-08-25, 23:18
My setup is rock solid and has been so since I started with SS 6.5.

Tip.
Dedicated server.
MIMO AP.

froth
2009-08-26, 08:24
As I stated before, I have a very stable system but with that said, I too believe that many would not be able to install and configure the system unless they had some technical know how.

Perhaps as wireless technology matures even further many issues will be resolved. Sonos has their own Mesh Network so other than the occasional interference with things like cordless phones it is pretty good and is dedicated for the use with their equipment. The Slim / Logitech uses good old wifi which in most cases is probably used by other devices in the house such as a laptop or iThingy.

So my install is stable, the wife and children love it and have not issues using it which is fantastic.

But in reality, if one wanted to really get the mass numbers of people using this system some packaging needs to be done. Here are my thoughts.

- SqueezeCenter Server (HW with SW preloaded and configured)
- Easy to use Ripping and Tagging pre installed
- Packaged Wifi Router Option
- Pre Installation check list including ways to test wifi signal strength before trying to get things to work.
- Good and easy to use trouble shooting tools
- Logitec to purchase iPeng, rebrand and own to insure long term support and new feature offerings.
- Consider dropping Controller or doing some redesign no the HW.

I am sure that there are other things but this is just from a person who is very happy with my current system.

mbonsack
2009-08-26, 08:27
Sounds like you could use some kind of mesh network to increase robustness. Perhaps throw in a little MIMO technology to make it even more robust and far-reaching. Something like damager just installed, perhaps?


I've said it before and I'll say it again -- Implement N in the product and I'll bet 90% of this duet/rebuffering/etc. crap goes away and stability goes through the roof. How many folks do we have complaining about wired setups? Wireless N will get you that much closer to what the wired folks are experiencing.

I'm not saying that N will fix the bugs, only mask them. But that's good enough for the wife in the kitchen...

jbart1965
2009-08-26, 08:56
I had some problems with Duet originally (bought in December 2008). Biggest bugaboo was occasional drops in the attic (farthest away from my modem), especially during the morning. Yet I eliminated all non Squeeze add-ons and, after the release of later 7.2s and now 7.3, my Duet has been quite stable and reliable. I eventually added 3 extra receivers and now have four floors covered, all of which can sync consistently.

Would I recommend Duet to a music lover who lacks any technical know-how? Probably not. My wife, for instance, still hasn't learned how to operate the system. On the other hand, my 8-year-old daughter figured out how to use the remote without any teaching from me. Go figure.

My biggest concerns are speed and connectivity. Future handsets need to operate faster (WiFi N, better internal chips) and more seamless connectivity. I hate having to fiddle with the receivers when they won't connect.

And of course software needs to improve, though stick to 7.3 until that happens. The only thing I dont like about 7.3 is my inability to use Rhapsody or Slacker via the headphone jack.

Personally, I am open to buying a Sonos in the future, but for now the Duet more than does the job after some initial frustration. I empathize with those who ultimately could not get the Duet to work as I and others did. It can be a bit quirky.

regalma1
2009-08-26, 08:58
It is still a problem child. I think that Slim Devices may be too hardware oriented and too techy. I work for a company that makes test and measurement equipment for use by professionals. I recently spent a year as a volunteer working with customers to solve problems that they were facing that our usual channels did not resolve I also am on multiple teams dealing with field failures.

Outside of batteries (sigh) absolutely, without question, the biggest cause of problems is firmware. In a field that used to be all hardware we now have more firmware developers than hardware folks and we still constantly fall short on our products. And then there is the problem of engineers not understanding consumers, and really not caring. Lastly the pressure to get a product out really causes designers, especially firmware designers, to not address problems they are not forced to.

I suspect that Slim Devices suffers from these problems.

Any product that is defined by engineers and whose final form and function is controlled by engineers will fail to be acceptable to consumers. That is a bit of an absolute on my part, but I truly believe it. By the way, I am an engineer.

syburgh
2009-08-26, 11:53
Wish you the best with Sonos. For me the 65k library size limit is a problem (of course I don't actually listen to 65k tracks, but who wants to spend the time to cull the tracks that don't get played?).

Am pleased with my SB3s, Booms, and Transporter. It (now) works reliably (as long as I don't upgrade SC often) and is easy for uninitiated users to figure out.

I too have avoided the receiver and controller. Guests often wonder how this "wireless music thing" works, but I've stopped explaining it because it is beyond my average tech savvy friend's grasp to reliably run SS/SC and a network of players without getting too frustrated in the process of making it all work (and I live a pretty tech savvy bit of the world).

<rant>
It should be very clear that as of 2009 many of the sort of people interested in this product no longer have (or want) a desktop PC, and running SC on a laptop is an unattractive proposition (SC gorges on memory like few other consumer apps, and people like to suspend/sleep their laptops to save battery power!).

I think a PogoPlug style SC7 appliance with USB drives and no wireless NIC would help a lot (tell people to plug it into their router. I've never seen/heard of an a SB owner without a Linksys/D-Link/whatever router). Put LEDs on it to indicate when it has a connection to the Internet (or SqueezeNetwork, or just a DHCP lease), a light to indicate the detected presence of 1 or more SB players (perhaps it could blink or change color when it finds un-configured players), and a light to indicate when SC is ready/rescanning the library. USB hard drives are cheap and simplicity is golden, so don't over-feature it and make it a FreeNAS/WHS clone. PogoPlugs cost $99, but I think a SC appliance would be worth at least as much as a Boom, and I might even be persuaded to pay some sort of subscription fee for radio and ongoing SC updates (if this is what it would take to get better quality SC releases). My $0.02.

More selfishly, can we have an officially supported iPod Touch interface and a modern (meaning fast & responsive) web interface to SC?
</rant>

andynormancx
2009-08-26, 12:16
I think a PogoPlug style SC7 appliance with USB drives and no wireless NIC would help a lot (tell people to plug it into their router. I've never seen/heard of an a SB owner without a Linksys/D-Link/whatever router). Put LEDs on it to indicate when that it has a connection to the Internet (or SqueezeNetwork, or just a DHCP lease), a connection to 1 or more SB players (perhaps it could blink or change color when it finds un-configured players), and a light to indicate when SC is ready/rescanning the library. USB hard drives are cheap and simplicity is golden, so don't over-feature it and make it a FreeNAS/WHS clone. PogoPlugs cost $99, but I think a SC appliance would be worth at least as much as a Boom, and I might even be persuaded to pay some sort of subscription fee for radio and ongoing SC updates (if this is what it would take to get better quality SC releases).

Have you not seen the discussion on the upcoming Squeezebox Touch player ? Its spec includes a USB port and SD card slot and the speculation is that it will be able to run a version of SqueezeCenter (hence the need to move SqueezeCenter to sqllite). Though I suspect that the software isn't quite there yet and it will probably launch without that feature being advertised.

syburgh
2009-08-26, 12:21
Have you not seen the discussion on the upcoming Squeezebox Touch player ?

Haven't been trawling these forums closely enough. My fear is that it could just be an overgrown Controller with a photo viewer applet and the ability to play local files from the USB drive, but lacking the ability to stream (and synchronize) other players as a full SC instance could. I believe the existing Controller product is similarly endowed with an SD card reader and USB host controller.

Would be terrific if this Touch product could run full-feature SC-- either the hardware will have an impressive amount of RAM and computing power, or SC will have become incredibly more efficient to make this possible. Either would be a welcome development.

If this Touch device lives up to expectations, I've my wallet at the ready.

exile
2009-08-26, 12:30
"More selfishly, can we have an officially supported iPod Touch interface and a modern (meaning fast & responsive) web interface to SC?"

as a long time user of these magical products, i can honestly only complain about that clunky and slow web interface. I love ipeng but I think an officially supported app could only help develop it further.

dsdreamer
2009-08-26, 12:50
But in reality, if one wanted to really get the mass numbers of people using this system some packaging needs to be done. Here are my thoughts.

- SqueezeCenter Server (HW with SW preloaded and configured)
- Easy to use Ripping and Tagging pre installed
- Packaged Wifi Router Option
- Pre Installation check list including ways to test wifi signal strength before trying to get things to work.
- Good and easy to use trouble shooting tools
- Logitech to purchase iPeng, rebrand and own to insure long term support and new feature offerings.
- Consider dropping Controller or doing some redesign to the HW.


Very good suggestions, to which I would add detection and warning during installation of AntiVirus installations that would potentially squelch MySQL transactions.


I've said it before and I'll say it again -- Implement N in the product and I'll bet 90% of this duet/rebuffering/etc. crap goes away and stability goes through the roof. How many folks do we have complaining about wired setups? Wireless N will get you that much closer to what the wired folks are experiencing.

I'm not saying that N will fix the bugs, only mask them. But that's good enough for the wife in the kitchen...

Fully agree with that. I think that we may be victims of an over-zealous Open standards ideology among the original SD founders and principals. I can sympathize with the principle of it; but at some point pragmatism should come into play and eventually put the customer experience as a higher priority than ideology.


It is still a problem child. I think that Slim Devices may be too hardware oriented and too techy.

[snip]

Any product that is defined by engineers and whose final form and function is controlled by engineers will fail to be acceptable to consumers. That is a bit of an absolute on my part, but I truly believe it. By the way, I am an engineer.

In another thread I tried to suggest a role for a "Director of User Experience" to be the voice of the customer. I guess that mainly produced giggles at the pomposity of such a title, but that reaction missed the point. In general, it is difficult for an engineering-led company (the original SD startup) to morph into a customer focused organization. Efforts are clearly underway, but may be too little too late.

socistep
2009-08-26, 14:45
My first product was the Duet, I've had issues but this has been stable for me since the last couple of releases.

In addition since I've had a dedicated server (vortexbox) my whole system has worked better, prior to that I was switching between the music on my laptop and squeezenetwork and at that point the Duet wouldn't cope well with that, I have barely used SN for months now and it.

For me the big plus for SB kit over Sonos is the ability to do extra things with the product, for example some of the plugins, iPeng & the controller acting as a player.

I think its always disappointing to see people leave to use Sonos kit and that the user experience hasn't been as good as others

86atc250r
2009-08-26, 15:01
My setup is rock solid and has been so since I started with SS 6.5.

Tip.
Dedicated server.
MIMO AP.

My setup has also been very solid with only minor issues that are easy to diagnose and resolve --- in fact, I have two locations, one with 7 devices (including 2 booms, a Duet, a couple SB3's, an SB2, etc), the other location has a Boom and a Duet.

I've had one Duet since they became publicly available and have never had any significant trouble out of it. The other is newer and haven't had trouble out of it either. The oldest unit is used for hours at a time on a daily basis & has been since day 1. It spends the vast majority of it's time streaming pandora and shoutcast.

I do have a solid network at both locations and am running decent server hardware --- even XP, which many claim is far less stable than *nix.

I would really like to analyze some of the setups that are claiming to have so much trouble. My initial feeling is that the vast majority of the time it could be tracked down to network and or server problems...

In my opinion, one of the greatest advantages to the slim system is it's flexibility. Unfortunately, that same flexibility also affords the end user the ability to screw it up in an infinite number of ways.

FWIW, even with a total of 10 devices between my two locations (all wireless), very seldom do I ever have to do more than turn a unit on in order to make it work.

If you are having re-buffering issues you MOST LIKELY have network problems. It's time to whip out the testing tools or find someone who can.

I have one player that has had recurring rebuffering problems - Not a single one of my other players does, ever. The player in question is connected to a wireless bridge in a shop bldg that had to pass through a metal wall in order to connect to the main AP in the other building. Signal quality was low, but worked fine for most computer work (i.e. web browsing, vpn, etc). Monitoring of the network, and checking the SB buffer display confirmed what was going on. I improved the wireless connection by relocating the antenna to a much more advantageous location and all problems were solved - not a single rebuffer since.

This isn't rocket science or witchcraft - with a little testing and analysis you can see EXACTLY what is going on with these devices and the network. Although there are a few bugs here and there in some of the software features, the core software and streaming capabilities are very stable and have been for a long time.

Pretty much all connectivity, flakiness, and rebuffering problems can be narrowed down to network and/or server issues - by equipment, installation, and configuration provided by the end user himself.

JMHO and experience....

jhd
2009-08-26, 15:38
I've been teetering on the edge of doing the same thing for some time now. I used to use "bleeding edge" versions of Squeezecenter hoping they would fix my problems, which they sometimes did, but they seemed to introduce as many new ones. Recently I've stayed only with stable releases, and just tolerated the maintenance workload. There's much to love about the Squeeze system. But despite that I've refrained from buying it for my family or recommending it to friends, because I just don't want to have to supply the effort needed to keep it running.

Although it seems minor, the issue that's about to break this camel's back is that I really love Pandora, and *no* version of the software (even with complete uninstall and deleting every relevant registry key) will restore the Pandora "thumbs up/down" functionality that evaporated some time back. It plays fine, but without the ability to train it, it's just another random jukebox. I just get the classic finger-pointing routine between Logitech and Pandora, and queries on the developer forums go unanswered. Nobody seems to have the time or motivation to go figure out why the functionality disappeared and stayed gone for some users but not all.

It's a shame - this thing really has fantastic potential, and I've been hopeful for a long time that it would solidify into a category-killer. It's a catch-22 for Logitech I'm sure -- the sales doubtless don't justify a huge software team, and so SC just seems to be chronically underresourced. But to really make it take off, they'd have to resource getting it to a state where my mom could get it to work (my consumer-electronics ease of use litmus-test). The open-source approach was an innovative way to tackle this conundrum, but I'm not sure the experiment has been a success. I wish it had.

- J

funkstar
2009-08-26, 15:49
I've said it before and I'll say it again -- Implement N in the product and I'll bet 90% of this duet/rebuffering/etc. crap goes away and stability goes through the roof. How many folks do we have complaining about wired setups? Wireless N will get you that much closer to what the wired folks are experiencing.

I'm not saying that N will fix the bugs, only mask them. But that's good enough for the wife in the kitchen...
802.11n is not a magic bullet for wireless reliability or signal strength.

DraftN devices work really well at the moment, but they are all premium devices. Once N replaces G in basic APs and routers, we will see lots of cost cutting and truely terrible devices that cause huge amounts of problems with streaming devices.

exile
2009-08-26, 16:49
802.11n is not a magic bullet for wireless reliability or signal strength.

DraftN devices work really well at the moment, but they are all premium devices. Once N replaces G in basic APs and routers, we will see lots of cost cutting and truely terrible devices that cause huge amounts of problems with streaming devices.

wireless N sounds great and probably IS great but it won't be a simple task to implement the new protocol in people's homes. for older computers, a wireless n card will need to be purchased, then some folks will need to upgrade their routers, etc. etc.

I recently purchased a Netgear MOCA ethernet adapter kit for my streaming video needs (i already have powerline adapters for my squeezeboxen) and it works like a charm. You simply plug any coax cable connection into it and then connect an ethernet cable out to any computer/ethernet device and you then have a connection that's faster than wireless n.

I've always been sold on the notion of wired instead of wireless whenever possible.

maggior
2009-08-27, 07:14
I recently purchased a Netgear MOCA ethernet adapter kit for my streaming video needs (i already have powerline adapters for my squeezeboxen) and it works like a charm. You simply plug any coax cable connection into it and then connect an ethernet cable out to any computer/ethernet device and you then have a connection that's faster than wireless n.

I've always been sold on the notion of wired instead of wireless whenever possible.

MOCA is great if you have coax running all over the place. Reading about it, one thing wasn't clear to me - can you use a run of coax both for tv (e.g. DirecTV) and data? For instance, if I have a run of coax to my TV, do I install a splitter and run one split to the TV via coax and the other through an ethernet adaptor to get data? And then on the other end split it and run another ethernet adaptor to my router?

It's probably my misunderstanding of how MOCA works, but I don't see the advantage, unless you are using Verizon FiOS where your TV is coming over your fiber connection and you already have coax run to your TV STBs.

I have one homeplug and it is working great. It solved a problem I had with a SB Boom in my kitchen that was getting slammed with interference from my microwave.

exile
2009-08-27, 10:10
according to the netgear info, you can use a splitter to divide up your signal between tv and data. they suggest using a high end splitter to reduce signal loss.

a drawback of moca is that it doesn't currently work with dish network. i'm not sure about direct tv. and yes, you need to have your house already set up with coax feeds.

i now watch all tv through the internet so i have yet to test out the splitter aspect of the moca.

oh, and the benefit to moca in my mind is almost 100% consistency in signal and speed which i did not have with wireless.

damager
2009-08-27, 10:46
Damager,

I am very nearly in your camp. My Wife is of the 'throw that damn thing away and give me my wave radio back' school, but I have stuggled through and now have a system which is stable - most of the time. I have recommended squeeze proucts (the Duet unfortunately) to non technical friends (3) who have now all given up on the system and have it gathering dust in cupboards.

As an aging EE graduate who cut his teeth programming PDP-11s in binary from the front panel switches I have enjoyed learning about TCP/IP and wandering around my house with NetStumbler, but I think that raises real questions about whether the products are really ready for the mainstream. For those who care, my experience is:

Transporter (wired) - no problems
SB3 (wireless) - occasional problems
Duet (2 of them, wireless) hopeless until the last couple of releases, still not great
Boom (2 of them wireless) - occasional problems

Given the new products that Logitech seem to have in development (Radio, Touch) it does look as if their engineering smarts are being dragged away from software developing and fixing for existing products and are working on the new stuff. Development of the whole new database back end must also be a significant distraction. This is unfortunate, as most forums on the web(correctly in my opinion) describe the squeeze products as innovative, but really only suitable for geeks. I do think Logitech should focus on getting their existing line stable.

My next door neighbour has Sonos. In my opinion, it isn't cutting edge, looks clunky and has limited options. He had it professionaly installed, and says he has never had a single problem. My Wife would drop squeeze and get Sonos in a heartbeat. I just keep hoping that the next software release will fix all my problems........

Yeah - I've stuck with the Squeeze line for many years, and have also recommended it to many people. Now that I've lived with Sonos for a week, I will admit that it is missing many of the bells and whistles of Squeezebox products - no front panel indication of activity, no ability to add plugins, etc. However, it is bulletproof (or as bulletproof as I can deem it after 1 week). I'm not advocating for or against either product, because they both excel in different areas, but for me personally, dependable performance trumps bells and whistles.

GeeJay
2009-08-27, 19:31
Thanks, damager, for your honest assessment of the pros and cons of each system.

I've been posting on several recent threads and bugs about issues that have come up for me since upgrading to 7.3.3. Rebuffering, players getting out of sync...even my homeplugged devices weren't working right.

One of my kids had to upgrade their desktop, and I acquired her old one and turned it into my music-only device. Plugged it directly into the router (the old one was homeplugged in a separate room, and I think that particular circuit had worse transfer rates than some of my wireless devices), loaded SC and my music files on it, and VOILA! Everything works perfectly. Well, other than the maddeningly slow "wake up" of my Controller.

I now agree with all the folks on this thread that say that Logitech needs to work on solving the wifi issue. More and more interference from other wireless devices makes wifi extremely frustrating for many people. I don't think they'll break through to the masses until they get that resolved.

iPhone
2009-08-27, 19:55
according to the netgear info, you can use a splitter to divide up your signal between tv and data. they suggest using a high end splitter to reduce signal loss.

Using the best splitters will get one 3dB of signal strength loss for each and every splittered used. Most catv splitters are much worse, more like around 4.5 to 5dB loss. Always use the least amount possible and try to run home runs off an amplifier block right after the main head in feed.

audio53
2009-08-28, 19:13
I feel the OP's pain.

My SB3 has been no problem, but the Controller I bought to go with it gets worse with each update.

Sometimes it will be stuck on the Settings screen when I take it out of the cradle. I then have to shut it down and restart to hopefully get it to work again. With the last update there is now no way to keep the screen from going off when playing music. I have filed several bug reports but keep getting told by QA that this is a 'feature' not a bug. A feature would let me control the screen behavior like I was able to before this update.

Anyway, I am anxiously awaiting the iPOD Touch 3g next month and will use iPeng. Sorry I ever spent the money for the Controller. Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be much of an eBay market for them.

pablolie
2009-08-29, 13:10
let me preface all of this by saying - i LOVE teh squeezebox philosophy.

but my order of favorites goes
1. sb classic (ie 3)
2. boom
3. duet

the duet got relegated to secondary duty in the bedroom system. for those who still complain about it: the controller is very finicky about the wireless router it works with. i changed to a linksys wrt610n and can recommend it. however, the wheel user if never lived up to its promise, it is cumbersome for large music collections.

i hear about that SB Touch. it think *that* *in* a controller type device would be the ueber user interface for all things squeeze, finally. i am looking forward to the touch. i will get one.

i love the classic - the UI is basic, but very purposeful and it *works*, and if you have good audio equipment it allows you to connect to it and go.

i love the boom, it allows you to connect more and more spots in your home to music at audio quality that is very good for the price point, and unbeatable for convenience.

if i was starting a system from scratch - i'd love the transporter. but i haven't had the chance to justify it yet, and i think what was a great product for an aspiring private company (slimdevices) may be too narrow a product for a consumer oriented company such as logitech, and think the transporter an endangered species... (sadly)

i have been a slim customer since 2005. here is my feedback to logitech:

1. you have one of the best value popositions in the industry. open source, awesome usability - do NOT give up. this product line can establish utter dominance in the market.

2. focus on stability and usability

3. you guys could be the iPhone of audio. this is open source, how about an "open source application store" (but free for users) for all things slim? there is *no* marketing around the expandability and openess of the product, and it seems the application developers have neglected the platform since takeover by logitech because of that. developers have built great stuff on the slim platform - don't ever give the open source aspect up. the market will come to appreciate it. "i'm a mac"... thanks no... "i'm a pc"... pardon me while i throw up a little.. "i am open, i am you, i can be what you as a user truly want and need me to be"... heck yes.

4. make sure the audio is pure. please. keep the clean reproduction philosophy. give me a low BER optical interface, always. keep the DA clean. pure audio. please. never allow fanciness and flashiness to compromise audio quality. please.

damager
2009-09-02, 20:58
OK - wanted to give you some updates on my experience.

The Sonos hardware is really pretty solid - well made, and works well.

However - NOT bulletproof. I have had some issues occasionally with dropouts and wireless signal strength.

While the call in Support has been pretty good, I'm sorely disappointed with their forums - there is NOTHING like the level of interaction present here, either in terms of user input or vendor involvement and feedback. These forums are really amazing compared to what I'm experiencing over there.

I'll continue to check in from time to time to share my experience.

Schindler
2009-09-02, 23:40
the bad thing here is, that most people only complain about the product. for a new squeezebox user this might be frightening.

so btw. I am a happy customer... ;-) (even with the controller and I prefer it over the iphone with ipeng).

christian

pablolie
2009-09-03, 07:16
it is a the nature of these forums that the people that come here fall into several categories, mostly
1. people with problems
2. people with emotional attachment to the product

GeeJay
2009-09-03, 20:22
(even with the controller and I prefer it over the iphone with ipeng).


Glad I'm not the only one! I've tried it twice using my daughter's ITouch, and I just can't get the hang of it...not as intuitive to me as the Controller.

Now if they would just make the Controller screen bright enough to use outside....

corbey
2009-09-06, 05:20
Unfortunately, I'm tired of the constant tinkering necessary to keep this all working.

In response to the original post, sorry, but I just can't relate to the problems you mention.

I have two SB3s and a Boom all connected wirelessly, and SqeezeCenter is running on my Windows Vista desktop PC. Nothing fancy, no Linux and no dedicated server.

I've had some minor problems through the years, but I find that SqueezeCenter has become so stable that I now consider my system to be more like another musical appliance. I turn it on, and it works. And that's it.

Enjoy your Sonos system, but I think I'll be keeping my Slim/Logitech devices for quite awhile longer and maybe buying more.

Cheers!

method man
2009-09-06, 17:28
yep. feel your pain. but ive had no problems with the duet since buying 3 months ago. sc works well. controller works well. even added a boom for the bedroom.

damager
2009-09-10, 08:34
Another quick update.

Upside:
The Sonos equipment is really easy to setup and does "just work". I haven't had any major issues, and others in my household (wife, kids) seem to be able to use everything easily. This was my main goals (high wife acceptance factor rating).

Downsides:
1. The Sonos equipment isn't as "informative" as the SB equipment. No front panel displays, etc. I don't like this.
2. There is no ability to "tinker" with the Sonos stuff. It does what it does in a very simple manner, with very little or no ability to customize.
3. The forums over there aren't very interesting. The Sonos user base seems WAY less technical that the user base here, so they really can't help much with the issues that are reported. Sonos tech support doesn't seem to participate much at all in the forums.
4. Cost - it is quite a bit more expensive.
5. No Boom - I really miss the form factor and functionality of the Boom.

froth
2009-09-10, 08:47
Thanks Dmager for your update.

One think I have noticed is that many Sonos fans have really jumped on the Duet Controller as a major issue. I do agree it is not one of the best products in the line from a stability point of view but it will probably get better. But in doing some research, I see that Sonos users have been complaining about lots of issues with Sono's new touch controller and as well a new software update.

So sorry to see you move on and wish you good listening. For me I will keep my Slim products and add more. I am really contemplating jumping on the Touch and using tinysc to run things for now. I already have a USB drive and the only thing I would miss would be the Weather Plugin I use on my Boom.

ghostrider
2009-09-10, 08:53
Another quick update.

Downsides:
1. The Sonos equipment isn't as "informative" as the SB equipment. No front panel displays, etc. I don't like this.
2. There is no ability to "tinker" with the Sonos stuff. It does what it does in a very simple manner, with very little or no ability to customize.
3. The forums over there aren't very interesting. The Sonos user base seems WAY less technical that the user base here, so they really can't help much with the issues that are reported. Sonos tech support doesn't seem to participate much at all in the forums.
4. Cost - it is quite a bit more expensive.
5. No Boom - I really miss the form factor and functionality of the Boom.

These points should have been obvious before the switch. :D

GeeJay
2009-09-10, 17:24
For me, the syncing/rebuffering issues that were bedeviling me for awhile disappeared once I eliminated a few of the wireless/homplug hops in my network. Now, the tinkering I do is for fun, not just to get the darn thing to work.

I would really miss the "tinkering" aspect of Squeeze, but I understand why someone would switch if they couldn't get the basics to work right...I was getting to that level of frustration myself.

Thanks, damager, for keeping us updated. If you ever want back in the fold, we'd be glad to have you!

Gildahl
2009-09-11, 13:02
I have had 3 SB3's for a few years and while it was a bit challenging to get everything running exactly the way I wanted it, it now runs with virtually no maintenance and hardly a hiccup (except when running the microwave, which reliably kills reception after 30 to 60 seconds every time--but I'm used to it). I never tried the Duet, but it sounds like that might be a good thing :-) I will probably get a Touch eventually.

I bought this system primarily for the great audio quality that was promised (and delivered), its ability to completely integrate my audio collection, its openness and flexibility, and (yes) to some extent its geekiness and niche aspects. In researching it, I fully expected it to require tweaking and tinkering; but that was actually appealing to me since I knew I could ultimately tailor such a system in ways that I could not do with other more "canned" systems. This, of course, makes it a system that is not for everyone.

This is one of the reasons I was always a little concerned of what would happen after the Logitech takeover. It's not that there is anything in particular bad about Logitech (I own lots of their products), but a large, popular company is going to have a tendency to pickup a more mainstream population of users with lower desire to be "challenged" by their audio system. I've always viewed the system as a hobbyist sort of system, but those who want a turnkey system are likely to be at least somewhat disappointed in the effort required. I personally think it is absolutely worth the effort, but understand why others may see it differently.

Peter314
2009-09-11, 14:47
I'm tired of the constant tinkering necessary to keep this all working.


Downsides:
...
2. There is no ability to "tinker" with the Sonos stuff.

Tinkering: you can't live with it and you can't live without it. :D

MrSinatra
2009-09-11, 22:22
really interesting posts...

i have wondered for a long time now why it is, if slim wants to sell hardware, they put so much resource wise into free software?

a while back, i argued for slim to create an "all in one" product, and was lynched for it, altho some good cons were brought up.

however, given the price drops in stuff, i think its clearly time to revisit the whole paradigm.

is perl the best way to go? should it run on peoples various computers?

i would argue that a small, silent, displayless box that connects wired to the router should run SC with possibly a SSD. it could be linux based and in firmware, instantly boot, whatever... it could have usb and wireless and also be able to reach music on mapped network drives off the box. basically, a small SC server box with other possible uses, (and even optionally a SB client onboard).

the other clients would be just as they are now, SBs, SBR, etc.

logitech could [opt] update it remotely, troubleshoot it, etc... and i would rather have such a box then an "always on" computer that i don't want weighed down by SC anyway.

the really great thing is logitech could control the platform en toto going forward, not have to worry about customers operating systems to any large degree. they could optimize SC in a newer, faster language or version for just such an appliance.

did i mention this would be something i'd be willing to pay logitech for?

erland
2009-09-12, 02:18
a while back, i argued for slim to create an "all in one" product, and was lynched for it, altho some good cons were brought up.

however, given the price drops in stuff, i think its clearly time to revisit the whole paradigm.

Have you seen the Squeezebox Touch announcement, isn't this more or less exactly what you want ? It's able to run a light version of SqueezeCenter with the current internal name "TinySC".



is perl the best way to go?

Every language has its advantages and disadvantages, one of perl advantages is that it's pretty easy to support different platforms and it uses less resources than for example Java.

It would take a lot of work to develop something in another language with the same functionality as we currently have, so even though I'd also like the server to be in something else than Perl I also understand why it isn't changed.



i would argue that a small, silent, displayless box that connects wired to the router should run SC with possibly a SSD. it could be linux based and in firmware, instantly boot, whatever... it could have usb and wireless and also be able to reach music on mapped network drives off the box. basically, a small SC server box with other possible uses, (and even optionally a SB client onboard).

That would basically be a Squeezebox Touch but without the display. Seems like a very logical next step, but probably not until the Touch has been released. The question is just how much hassle it will be to setup a unit without a display and no web interface. My feeling is that this is one thing that caused some support issues with the Duet.

cliveb
2009-09-12, 03:18
i would argue that a small, silent, displayless box that connects wired to the router should run SC with possibly a SSD. it could be linux based and in firmware, instantly boot, whatever... it could have usb and wireless and also be able to reach music on mapped network drives off the box. basically, a small SC server box with other possible uses, (and even optionally a SB client onboard).
Plus a CD drive and some decent ripping s/w, of course. (Oh, that's a Vortexbox, isn't it?) But I agree that it would be a sensible offering from Logitech - a turnkey solution for non-IT literate users. But if such a device were to be created, it's crucial that SqueezeCenter continue to be developed and made available to those of us who do want to configure our own servers. I happen to have a Linux machine running 24/7, so it makes perfect sense to run SqueezeCenter on it too, rather than have yet another box consuming power.

However, offering such a server "appliance" may not solve all of the problems that non-technical users have. The impression I get from these forums is that many (most?) of the problems are down to networking issues rather than getting the server up & running. As long as the Squeezebox system runs over whatever standard network the user has, it's vulnerable to these issues. That said, I'm certainly would not advocate that Logitech "do a Sonos" and switch to a closed, proprietary wireless solution.

MrSinatra
2009-09-14, 13:25
Have you seen the Squeezebox Touch announcement, isn't this more or less exactly what you want ? It's able to run a light version of SqueezeCenter with the current internal name "TinySC".

i don't want a box that has no webui that i have to "touch" to control. its "nice" to have a SB3 or something with a display, but honestly a SBR is all i ever need as a client by a stereo.

what i want to do is replace SC on a computer with a new, smarter, more focused device that uses less power and is controlled by a SBC. every so often i'd webui into it.

i'd want to be able to hookup a raid "mybook" mirror usb ext drive to it, and/or have it map network drives.

i'd also want SC to take "more ownership of it" meaning sync it with SN, handle linux updates for it as well as SC updates, and so on. i'd also like them to consider making SC in another, faster, less of a footprint language, with the idea being that if they could control both client and server, they could develop SC better and faster. also, if they could sell the server side of it, they would have more incentive to do upnp, dlna, etc to make it more attractive. it could even serve video to dlna clients.

i think most people would eventually want to move to such a device, rather than have SC on their computers.


Every language has its advantages and disadvantages, one of perl advantages is that it's pretty easy to support different platforms and it uses less resources than for example Java.

It would take a lot of work to develop something in another language with the same functionality as we currently have, so even though I'd also like the server to be in something else than Perl I also understand why it isn't changed.

i should make clear i'm no programmer but my impression is Perl is clunky and leaves too big a footprint.

i think development would be aided by a server environment they control.


That would basically be a Squeezebox Touch but without the display. Seems like a very logical next step, but probably not until the Touch has been released. The question is just how much hassle it will be to setup a unit without a display and no web interface. My feeling is that this is one thing that caused some support issues with the Duet.

indeed, and good point. i don't understand why they forced the SBR to need the SBC, it should have just defaulted to DHCP, period.

by now, i think u gather how i envision it. any device can be a client, and i'd use a SBC with it, and i'd have one small, silent, power efficient, always on linux server box with SC that they could rewrite for this box that i'd be all too happy to buy.

Declan Moriarty
2009-09-14, 15:11
I am happy with my SqueezeBox 3. The touch sounds interesting. The only thing that worries me about is is the fact that it requires a USB drive to be plugged in if using the built in server. This would mean scanning a large music collection would be dreadfully slow compared to a server using internal IDE drives. Also since the internal server of the Touch is operating on the Touch only (no web interface), if something happens to the Touch display you are stuck. At least I can control SC from my computer and my SqueezeBox. I would only be able to control the built in SC on the Touch from the Touch. Although I would be able to play it on my PC using SqueezePlay. I wouldn't have the option of using SqueezeSlave with a web interface.

Surely something like intergrated CD/ripping/server solutions that are sold by places like cooltipia or ripcaster are better than the touch since no USB drives lying arround (faster DB scan).

Another point about Sonos. Surely the "Sonos has less information" than SqueezeBos is untrue. This is exactly the same as the duet. The reciever has no display the display is in the SBC/iPhone. And Sonos has an iPhone client. Sonos has a controler (and has a new touch controler). I chose the SB3 because I couldn't read the Sonos controller and couln't try out the SBC but realiesed it was probably going to be extemely difficult to use.

With the new server software in the Touch, it appears that anybody having an existing installation can't use the Touch without transfering there library to the Touch and USB drive combination? And a Touch would'nt like a SB3 + Boom + SC server installation?

froth
2009-09-14, 15:19
.

With the new server software in the Touch, it appears that anybody having an existing installation can't use the Touch without transfering there library to the Touch and USB drive combination? And a Touch would'nt like a SB3 + Boom + SC server installation?


Hey Declan,

Using a USB drive is an option but not needed. You can use your Touch just like you use your SB3 and have a server running.

Nonreality
2009-09-14, 18:28
Damager,




Transporter (wired) - no problems
SB3 (wireless) - occasional problems
Duet (2 of them, wireless) hopeless until the last couple of releases, still not great
Boom (2 of them wireless) - occasional problems

Given the new products that Logitech seem to have in development (Radio, Touch) it does look as if their engineering smarts are being dragged away from software developing and fixing for existing products and are working on the new stuff. Development of the whole new database back end must also be a significant distraction. This is unfortunate, as most forums on the web(correctly in my opinion) describe the squeeze products as innovative, but really only suitable for geeks. I do think Logitech should focus on getting their existing line stable.

......

I really think you hit it well with these comments. I think the SB3 is a fantastic device and the only problems I've ever had have been with beta versions of the software and never with the device. Those choices were mine and not with the product. I understand the need for new products but I really think that you should have rock solid existing products before you move on. This probably only happened with the Classic. The duet has been totally inconsistant from the beginning. I stayed away and am glad I did. It has hurt the entire line. Some people love it but more seem to have too many problems and this notion makes people stay away from even trying the SB3. It's ok to have a reputation of being great for geeks but not having one that alludes to the fact that you need to be one. I love my SB3 but I hope that the newer products start to create the idea that 1. They just work. 2. They allow people that have a touch of understanding of computers to do more with them than any other product. 3. You are not handcuffed with a proprietary system that will not allow your system to grow without spending a bunch more money. 4. You system will suite both casual and critical listeners with ease.
But the first thing is it must work, out of the both with little hassle. Don't release it if it doesn't.

aubuti
2009-09-14, 18:32
Using a USB drive is an option but not needed. You can use your Touch just like you use your SB3 and have a server running.
Right. And you can also use the SB Touch like an SB Controller, controlling other SBs you have around the house.

As for the scanning being slower on an attached USB vs an internal IDE or SATA disk, of course you're right. But the people who will use the TinySC option are those who don't want a separate server running. Those who prefer a separate server can continue to do so with the SB Touch.

iPhone
2009-09-14, 20:03
Right. And you can also use the SB Touch like an SB Controller, controlling other SBs you have around the house.

As for the scanning being slower on an attached USB vs an internal IDE or SATA disk, of course you're right. But the people who will use the TinySC option are those who don't want a separate server running. Those who prefer a separate server can continue to do so with the SB Touch.

Exactly. Well said and a nice post Aubuti.

Anybody else notice that this post has been semi-hijacked into a Touch discussion? I hope that is an indication of how much people are looking forward to the new Squeezeboxes.

Nonreality
2009-09-14, 23:27
Exactly. Well said and a nice post Aubuti.

Anybody else notice that this post has been semi-hijacked into a Touch discussion? I hope that is an indication of how much people are looking forward to the new Squeezeboxes.

Shinny new things are always attractive.

damager
2009-12-16, 13:50
Now that I've been gone on my Sonos trial run for the past 5 months or so, I thought I would drop in and give you an update.

First, I've come to the conclusion that neither product line is "better" for all users. Sonos is more bulletproof and always works as expected, Logitech has more device choices and much more expandability and "hackability".

I've enjoyed Sonos so far - everything works as expected every time, sync'ing is perfect every time. I do, however, find myself missing the configurability of the Logitech line.

snarlydwarf
2009-12-16, 14:15
Now that I've been gone on my Sonos trial run for the past 5 months or so, I thought I would drop in and give you an update.

First, I've come to the conclusion that neither product line is "better" for all users. Sonos is more bulletproof and always works as expected, Logitech has more device choices and much more expandability and "hackability".

That's a fair summary.



I've enjoyed Sonos so far - everything works as expected every time, sync'ing is perfect every time. I do, however, find myself missing the configurability of the Logitech line.

That is I think a balance people need to choose for themselves, and a pretty common one. (ie, in the digicam world do you want a simple point and shoot, or a high end DSLR? Both are valid choices depending on your needs... heck some people carry around one or more of each... Plasma or LCD, which is better? Depends...)

For me, I think the SB line is much more impressive, not just because I'm cheap, but because of the Value Add from 3rd parties, the flexibility in servers, etc. I've gotten spoiled by that, and I don't think I could easily drop it, even if Sonos offered the same plugins that I currently use, it would still be a "ooh, but the SB line can always add more even if some corporate marketing droid thinks it's a dumb idea.."

My parents? I dunno, they'd probably prefer an All In One thing, but I don't actually think they would buy either product.

Thanks for the valid feedback, it's nice to see a post not filled with "oh, yeah, well you suck more!" nonsense, but a good informed summary of the differences and a realization that life rarely gives us a Perfect Choice for All Users.

damager
2009-12-16, 19:29
Thanks Snarly -

One other thing I'll note is that the forums here are MUCH more active and supportive than the forums on the Sonos side - I benefited tremendously from the help from users here while I was a Squeeze products user. The community is a real asset for the Squeeze line.

GeeJay
2009-12-16, 20:13
Thanks for the update, damager. I hope that the folks at Logitech read this and realize that the strength of their product lies in the development community. I fear that if they ever stray from that I'll be searching for an alternative as well.

eganders
2009-12-17, 06:24
Thanks Snarly -

One other thing I'll note is that the forums here are MUCH more active and supportive than the forums on the Sonos side - I benefited tremendously from the help from users here while I was a Squeeze products user. The community is a real asset for the Squeeze line.

As the SqueezeBox product lineup has a feature set that also appeals to the technical mind, it seems reasonable that more of the Squeeze community (than Sonos community) would be willing to fiddle and share. It's not that Sonos buyers couldn't mimic this behavior. But almost by definition, it seems that the prototypical Sonos buyer doesn't know as much about the inner workings of their product and, for the most part, doesn't want to.

By the way, I would echo the comments of others in this thread who've discussed upgrading their WAP's and / or antennas. After doing the same I've had no problems with my Duet or Controller.

hungarianhc
2009-12-17, 12:03
Been following this thread...

It takes a LOT of work to get things to the "everything just works" point with the Squeezebox Server. But once it's set up, I think you really can just set it and forget it.

I think an area for Squeezebox Product management to look at is a quick and easy server, possibly based on the Sheevaplug...

snarlydwarf
2009-12-17, 12:08
Been following this thread...

It takes a LOT of work to get things to the "everything just works" point with the Squeezebox Server. But once it's set up, I think you really can just set it and forget it.

I think an area for Squeezebox Product management to look at is a quick and easy server, possibly based on the Sheevaplug...

See the Touch.

(Though neither is really workable for ripping/encoding/tagging... it's best in that case to use your regular PC/Mac/Linux/whatever box and copy the files to the server machine... but, then, I think that's true of Sonos, too.)

I've always believed there is a huge market for things like VortexBox, though I'm not sure if Logitech really wants to get into that. It could be very difficult since it's way out of their usual product line. "System Integrators" should be doing exactly what VortexBox has/does...

Ken
2009-12-18, 21:39
Having been a SB user since the days of the Slimp3 I had a set up consisting of 7 SBs (a mixture of SB2s and SB3s) plus 2 SB Booms in our holiday apartment. The SBs were all wired but despite this I had issues with the three that were synched. Eventually the irritation of this reached the point where, having pondered the switch for the last couple of years I finally succumbed and bought a Sonos system to replace my main three SBs.

The remaining SBs have been reduced to 3 as one was never used. I don't envisage replacing the other three SBs with Sonos units as they are in locations where synching with other units is not a factor. I will also be definitely keeping the Booms.

The Sonos certainly achieved instant WAF, not least I suspect because its limitations (lack of plugins) is part of what keeps it straightforward to use. Synching with the Sonos seems much more reliable and straightforward. The Controller is far more intuitive than the SB Controller (which I also have). The only thing to get close to it is iPeng, but even some elements of that are not so intuitive.

Anyway I have a number of units I will be selling off on ebay.

But I will still be lurking around here and will remain a SB user.

Ken

aubuti
2009-12-18, 21:51
Having been a SB user since the days of the Slimp3 I had a set up consisting of 7 SBs (a mixture of SB2s and SB3s) plus 2 SB Booms in our holiday apartment. The SBs were all wired but despite this I had issues with the three that were synched. Eventually the irritation of this reached the point where, having pondered the switch for the last couple of years I finally succumbed and bought a Sonos system to replace my main three SBs.
Did you abandon the sync'ing before or after SC 7.3 came out? There was a major reworking of the streaming and sync'ing code that made sync'ing rock solid in 7.3.0 and later. Although maybe yours is a corner case for some reason.

Ken
2009-12-18, 23:16
Problems started post 7.3. The players worked fine if all started off together but joining one to the group whilst playing resulted in the server software just hanging up, which was only recoverable by reloading the system that the server software was running on.

Clearing down the cache via the SB Control panel sometimes improved the situation temporarily but didn't last long.

I suppose the problems brought home to me the point that support for issues like this is very much dependent on these forums.

Ken

andynormancx
2009-12-19, 02:17
I'm pleased to say that syncing nowadays (probably since 7.3.3) is 99.999% reliable for me now. I keep three players synced 100% of the time and turn them on and off individually through out the day.

About once a month when turning a player on the audio will stop and has to be restarted. But other than that it just works.

socistep
2009-12-19, 15:08
I posted in this thread a few months ago, since then I've moved in with my girlfriend and added a SB Radio to my players, system is still excellent and have had no complaints, its great syncing all 3 players. The 7.4 upgrade for me was very positive, I like the GUI on the Radio/Duet controller and has been very stable.

Usage of wireless is now in a bigger house and, again, no problems, however have added some ethernet homeplugs to connect the server (vortexbox and upstairs) to the router, I've also wired the duet to the router as opposed to wireless, wireless still used for Boom & Radio)

I've never used Sonos however the kit looks good from the website etc., my main concerns over Sonos though was the price and also the lack of flexibility in their product range, both from the closed code side and also the fact that the players have to be linked to amp/speakers whereas SB Boom/Radio over something completely different and much more suited to my requirements - I also think the touch looks completely better then anything offered by Sonos and the potential to link a USB drive looks great

NoFlyZone
2009-12-21, 13:03
I think I'm moving on as well. I have a Squeezebox 3 and a Transporter.

I've giving up on getting an accurate library to browse and the help I got from Logitech support was "we don't help with tagging issues"

I know I can use this forum and have in the past, and have but I still haven't resolved my "albums in the artists and vice versa", music. It's been extremely frustrating. God only knows how many hours I've spent retagging..

It all looks perfect in MedaMonkey.

There's so many great companies out there. Nuforce has been awesome and they have a music server in their lineup as well. I use an outboard DAC so the internals aren't so much important - the interface is.
Maybe I'll check out Sonos as well.

Good luck to you

mlsstl
2009-12-21, 13:45
NoFlyZone wrote:
I know I can use this forum and have in the past, and have but I still haven't resolved my "albums in the artists and vice versa", music. It's been extremely frustrating. God only knows how many hours I've spent retagging.

Interesting, I've had very little problem with tagging in my 44,000+ song collection. I assume part of that is perhaps I don't access my collection in the same fashion as you.

I would assume the other aspect is I never accept the tagging provided by the various database services without at least reviewing the tags before the files are added to my collection. They get modified a good percentage of the time. (For example, I have just a small amount of iTunes material, but I get particularly annoyed by the way it breaks up albums. However, a lot of people absolutely love iTunes.)

Of course, that is one of those issues where different people have different needs and priorities so it is good you have some alternatives identified that will better suit your situation.

Good luck with your search. I'm sure you'll have no problem selling the SB3 and Transporter when you replace them.

pablolie
2009-12-21, 20:20
These days I only do stable releases in anything I own. I do enough design and debugging at work. :-)

My impression with 7.4.1, with what I think is a decent installed base, is that it is less reliable than prior releases reaching back to 6.x, and my posting history is there to show it. The installation was not smooth. And now that it works, some nagging occasional pauses and random behavior persist. The Duet particularly so (no surprise there historically), but even the typically very reliable SB3s will stutter here and there, especially when synched (2 SB3s and 1 Boom are *always* synched in my setup). The synch itself works well enough, but there seem to be some occasional stuttering issues around it. Occasional long pauses between songs, typically. The very occasional stop. I don't recall it happening with several prior releases.

I do understand Logitech is evolving as is the product line, and think the Touch a very cool addition to the lineup. But as this thread cautions, I think it is critically important that the core functionality of the SB system, that is to play music with total reliability, is never remotely compromised for bells and whistles.

I can live with album art not showing at times. I can live with some cool features here and there not working. But the music not playing or having dropouts, that will always have a very emotional reaction. When I am in the mood to listen to music, the last thing I am in the mood for is to troubleshoot why it might NOT be playing. Which has happened to me a few times in 7.4.1, randomly.

That said, I continue to be a fan and will continue to endorse the product, albeit a bit more cautiously after the 7.4.1 experience. Here's looking forward to more stability going forward.

NoFlyZone
2009-12-22, 06:13
I solved the problem with the screwed up library in Squeezecenter. As I mentioned, artists would show album titles and albums would show artists, all in a totally random way. Having a 1000 + library in FLAC this has been most frustrating as I found it difficult if not impossible to play s title I wanted to hear and worse yet, others who had desires for certain artists/albums to play could not. Kind of embarrassing considering the level of system I have :-/

The problem was with in the path. Although MediaMonkey had no problem with long filenames Squeezecenter apparently does. In MediaMonkeys Tools/Auto Organize Files, one could rename file names based upon a tagging scheme. Very cool. I was able to rename nearly 1000 CD's worth of song titles with a click of a mouse. Doubting this would work I deleted then rescanned my library, sat on the couch and witnessed a perfectly organized library from my Squeezebox 3. Haven't seen that in over a year! Woo Hoo!

Thanks for the tips and helpful information from this forum.

No thanks to Logitech support who refused to even talk about a possible tagging issue. Business must be good..

It's good to know that other companies as of late (say Nuforce) have been extremely helpful with problems I've encountered with a product, even when I was the cause!

funkstar
2009-12-22, 06:33
The problem was with in the path.
Interesting. I would have assumed a tagging issue as well. I think this needs raised in the bug tracker (http://bugs.slimdevices.com) with both the previous and current structure detailed to prevent this becoming an issue for others in the future.

MrSinatra
2009-12-22, 07:50
was this a windows system?

if so, it could be a windows limitation, not a SBS one. windows does have problems with handling changes/edits/even reading very long paths-filename combos.

i ran into this but not via SBS. if the total characters of the path and filename all together exceeds a certain limit, windows does not handle it well.

Phil Leigh
2009-12-22, 08:07
was this a windows system?

if so, it could be a windows limitation, not a SBS one. windows does have problems with handling changes/edits/even reading very long paths-filename combos.

i ran into this but not via SBS. if the total characters of the path and filename all together exceeds a certain limit, windows does not handle it well.

259 for filename characters and 248 for path I think...

huytere
2009-12-23, 04:22
Many of you will say this is overkill, but if you really want to troubleshoot things, here are the steps to identify the problem.

If you are experiencing issues, here are some steps to see if the Duet problem is purely wifi/environment related:

Make sure your SB receiver is plugged into a wired ethernet connection directly on the router switch port! No homeplug, no wifi, a real old fashioned ethernet wired connection. Use a very long ethernet cable if you need it!

Install SB Server on a dedicated machine that is not doing any tasks except serving SB. Password protect it so nobody in the family can use it. Make sure you install SB Server on a clean OS install, not an old pc with ten million shareware apps that are hogging resources. The machine should have good specs, at least 2 gb ram, 1.0ghz cpu.

Unplug all wireless devices in your house including phones, wireless doorbells, ham radios, etc. Anything that uses a radio should be shut off. Disable all laptops that are using wifi.

Make sure nobody on your home network is using the network/internet, especially video sharing, ip cameras, etc, streaming audio/video, VOIP, Vonage etc.

Make sure your wifi access point is not located near any metal objects, especially anything with electronic components. For testing purposes, put it right in the middle of your testing room.

Make sure your wifi access point is high quality device, not a 20 dollar special. Think of all the engineering that goes into manufacturing a wifi access point, there is lots of quality issues if you have a poor device. Make sure it has good clean power from a UPS.

At this point, you have a pristine environment to test the duet handheld controller. Now it is the ONLY device on the wifi network and it is just sending *very small* data commands to the receiver (ie Play, Next, Up, Down, etc). This is known as a "dedicated wireless control network" because the wireless network is dedicated to only sending very lightweight commands, it is NOT competing with a million other bandwidth robbing things. Make sure your wifi access point is very close to the duet handheld controller, this will ensure that the signal is very strong. If you have a weak signal the battery has to work overtime on the controller and it will drain faster. The closer / stronger your signal is to the wifi access point the better control signals you will be sending.

Ok, lets assume everything works great for a few days, you have no audio drop outs, the controller is very responsive, everything works perfectly. Now you can start to do things like turn on your house phone. Then test it for a few more days and slowly add more things to the environment till you find the devices/human behaviours that are causing the performance problems.

Another thing you could do is create a "control only" wifi network that is dedicated 100% to the duet handheld controller. No other devices (laptops, etc) are allowed to use this wifi network. That way its resources are dedicated 100% to the controller traffic.

Gerry123
2009-12-23, 05:13
I've discovered what was causing my SBC problems. It's called a squeezebox controller. A small thin box with a display on it. Sold that on Ebay, bought iPeng for the iPod touch for 4.99 and never looked back.

Solved.

Simples.

huytere
2009-12-23, 05:19
you could have tried wrapping your house in tinfoil before you got rid of it.... also do not forget the new OralB toothbrush that has a wireless timer. Bad news.

Gerry123
2009-12-23, 06:16
you could have tried wrapping your house in tinfoil before you got rid of it.... also do not forget the new OralB toothbrush that has a wireless timer. Bad news.

That's what I like about these forums. Plain, uncomplicated and sound advice!

Bummer, never thought of that one. Kicking myself now, but not quite as much as the SBC.

Actually, I suspected the pen/watch/webcam/usb stick/breadmaker/toaster/tea maker gadget the wife bought me last Christmas. Was OK until I tried to wirelessly toast a poptart then all hell broke loose.

Dogberry2
2009-12-23, 12:38
Yup. I 'spect we can all relate. Like them new-fangled fancy auto-MO-beel things. I bought one, and expected it to JUST WORK! Nobody told me I'd have to learn how to actually DRIVE the consarned thing! Reading the owner's manual, learning about all the buttons and levers and knobs inside, and all the funny-looking doo-dads, knowing fancy lingo just to be able to start the blasted machine! Isn't this the 21st century? Why do things have to be so all-fired complicated? I expected I could buy an auto-MO-beel and just get inside it and it would take me places, without me having to know anything about how to make it go! I ain't no dadgum mechanic! All the ads made it look like it would be easy, just get in and it goes where you want it to! But instead I'm expected to know something about the machine, how to work it, how to make it work, what it can and can't do . . . no end of nonsense!

Nosiree bob, I think it's just easier to stick to my good ol' horse and buggy. Them newfangled inventions just ain't ready for plain common folk. I'll wait 'til they get all the bugs out and make it real EASY to use.

Yup.

pfarrell
2009-12-23, 13:04
Moving quickly way off topic:
> Nosiree bob, I think it's just easier to stick to my good ol' horse and
> buggy.

Years ago, I was up in Shenandoah National Park on a Sunday, there were
a bunch of horses tied up to a rail outside the main lodge. I asked the
Ranger what was the deal. He said that the surrounding counties were dry
(no booze) on Sunday, so the locals would ride up into the park, and hit
the bar in the lodge. They rode because they lived just outside the park
and there was no direct way to get a car there quickly, other than going
down into the valley, driving twenty miles, then entering the park and
driving back twenty miles.

Plus, the horses knew the way home, so if they had one or two too many,
the horse would get them home. Even better, now DUI while riding.

--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

garym
2009-12-23, 13:14
Plus, the horses knew the way home, so if they had one or two too many,
the horse would get them home. Even better, no DUI while riding.

--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

well, maybe, maybe not....


SOMERSET, Ky. -- A Kentucky man is behind bars for DUI, but officers said he never got behind the wheel of a car.

Instead, police said Millard Greg Dwyer, 42, of Somerset, was arrested while riding a horse, WLKY NewsChannel 32 reported Wednesday.

An off-duty state trooper said Dwyer nearly fell off the animal. Investigators said Dwyer admitted to being drunk, and a breath test showed his blood-alcohol level was at more than three times the legal limit.

Although they said Dwyer's arrest is very unusual, Somerset police have made similar arrests for riding a bicycle and a lawnmower while under the influence, WLKY reported.

funkstar
2009-12-23, 14:23
Plus, the horses knew the way home, so if they had one or two too many,
the horse would get them home. Even better, now DUI while riding.
OK going OT here, but in the UK you can be "Dunk in charge of..." pretty much anything. Drunk in charge of a push bike is fairly common in parts of the country :)