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west_sounds
2010-03-09, 03:02
Hi

I wonder if anyone can give me some help. I am desperate to get some wireless music. So far I have looked at the apple airport express and the squeezebox receiver. From what I can gather the Squeezebox is the highest quality audio (as the airport express can add some pops and crackles in the silence between tracks, so I have read). Sound quality is my main priory.

However I don’t want to use itunes, windows media player or the squeeze box software or any extra remote controls. I have two laptops running the Albumplayer jukebox software and I just want that direct from the laptops to the receiver to my HiFi. It is obviously possible someway but has anyone done it. I see AE has third party Airfoil software that lets you do a similar thing but I can find anything for the SB receiver. I just want to buy a couple of receivers and I hoping I wont need the remote as it is something I don’t really want.

dsdreamer
2010-03-09, 04:20
Hi

I wonder if anyone can give me some help. I am desperate to get some wireless music. So far I have looked at the apple airport express and the squeezebox receiver. From what I can gather the Squeezebox is the highest quality audio (as the airport express can add some pops and crackles in the silence between tracks, so I have read). Sound quality is my main priory.

However I don’t want to use itunes, windows media player or the squeeze box software or any extra remote controls. I have two laptops running the Albumplayer jukebox software and I just want that direct from the laptops to the receiver to my HiFi. It is obviously possible someway but has anyone done it. I see AE has third party Airfoil software that lets you do a similar thing but I can find anything for the SB receiver. I just want to buy a couple of receivers and I hoping I wont need the remote as it is something I don’t really want.

There is a way to do what you ask, using the WaveInput V1.05 plugin of SqueezeCenter, which is maintained by bpa who is very helpful in these forums. This would involve setting up the Squeezebox Server software in addition to AlbumPlayer and setting a favorite that "tunes" to the soundcard output. You will also likely need either a physical (cable) loopback cable, or a (real or virtual) soundcard that can be configured to do loopback. As I say, it may not be very elegant, but you can probably make it work.

People say there is about 5 seconds latency in the buffering with default settings.

moley6knipe
2010-03-09, 05:29
Any box like a Squeezebox will need some sort of software to drive it, I'd imagine. It sounds like all you want is a wire-free way of taking an audio output from your laptop into your hi-fi, so maybe something like a Bluetooth AV tx/rx jobby? Google "bluetooth receiver transmitter" - if your laptop has got Bluetooth built in you're laughing. No idea what the sound is like on these things.

Mnyb
2010-03-09, 05:50
Wav input plug would possibly do away with some of that good soundquality a squeezebox have.

Is there any other product that would be more suitable ?

The squeezebox is not a long cable to your soundcard, it's aimed at another type of user.

So using it only for some special corner case would not use it's full potential and possible no guarantee that it will function any good in the future for that special case.

USb dac with some kind of extension for the usb if such a thing exists ?

JeffHart
2010-03-09, 07:50
Sounds like you are looking for something more along the lines of the Rocketfish wireless audio products - they accept an audio input and broadcast it wirelessly to a receiver; options include a receiver that will provide audio outputs to connect to an existing sound system or wireless speakers.

Basically they replace wires with a wireless connection. I'm not sure of the impact on signal quality if any.

The Squeezebox approach offers much more control and flexibilty, but if you're happy with your setup and just want to go wireless it may be the easiest approach.

west_sounds
2010-03-09, 07:58
thanks for the replies so far. Yes maybe there is a better product out there but i havent found one yet.

what i really need is a 'long wireless cable from my audio out' thats it. I only considered the squeeze box because it does have a very good dac built into it already which would save me buying a DAC straight away.

I did plan on getting a DACMAGIC down the line but I just wanted the wireless part to get started. the apple airport express with airfoil was a possibility also but i read somewhere that it does have some interference on the silence between tracks? Which may not be a big deal but I know over time it would be a nussance.

Mnyb
2010-03-09, 08:16
thanks for the replies so far. Yes maybe there is a better product out there but i havent found one yet.

what i really need is a 'long wireless cable from my audio out' thats it. I only considered the squeeze box because it does have a very good dac built into it already which would save me buying a DAC straight away.

I did plan on getting a DACMAGIC down the line but I just wanted the wireless part to get started. the apple airport express with airfoil was a possibility also but i read somewhere that it does have some interference on the silence between tracks? Which may not be a big deal but I know over time it would be a nussance.

Yes but using the Wav input plugin, would possible mangle the sound trough your OS (windows K mixer urgh) and soundcard and drivers for that card ?
This is often not a bit perfect path. No dac in the world would fix that ?

The squeeze approach is server client, the PC used as a server does not need to have any working sound at all it's the files themself that got streamed to your squeezebox not the "sound" so likewise no "drivers" needed for the squeeze box as it is a network client to the squeezeboxserver.

Edit: this is why no other software "player" can use the squeezebox, many thinks that squeezeboxserver is a music player it is not.
It is A: a server B: an interface to the player which is the squeezebox itself C: Admin interface for the server D: i gazillion other things thatI've missed ?

west_sounds
2010-03-09, 09:11
not sure what the wave input plug in is but I know the dacmagic and others have a usb and optical input. if the PC sends just a digital signal a 0 or 1s to the DAC to convert into analog I cant see the problem, if its wirelessly done or not. The same as if the squeeze box sent a digital signal via the optical output to a dac. Its either a 0 or a 1. Its the analog conversion that gives the characteristics of the sound coming out the speakers.

bpa
2010-03-09, 09:32
Any device which takes the audio from a Windows application which is playing to a Windows audio device then Windows audio subsystem will have altered it (e.g. usually upsampling to 48kHz from 44.1kHz) compared to the file on the disk.

SqueezeBox server (SBS) takes the bits from the disk and does nothing to them mand the DAC in the receiver changes them to analog. WaveInput plugin takes an PCM audio stream from Windows applications and passea it to SBS for playing. So even though the audio stram is digital, Windows will have altered it compared to the digital audio on the file.

Phil Leigh
2010-03-09, 10:15
not sure what the wave input plug in is but I know the dacmagic and others have a usb and optical input. if the PC sends just a digital signal a 0 or 1s to the DAC to convert into analog I cant see the problem, if its wirelessly done or not. The same as if the squeeze box sent a digital signal via the optical output to a dac. Its either a 0 or a 1. Its the analog conversion that gives the characteristics of the sound coming out the speakers.

Let's put it this way - the zeroes and ones are supposed to be the easy bit - it's everything else that is hard... (and it's got nothing to do with wirelessly or not).

Getting Windows to produce bit-perfect streams is an art in itself.

I don't understand - if you care about sound quality, just get a Squeezebox and run Squeezebox server on your laptop(s). Don't futz around with Windows audio at all.

If you want a GUI that looks like AlbumPlayer, use Moose.

The Squeezebox solution is hardware AND software used together. not just hardware.

west_sounds
2010-03-09, 12:36
I am almost buying the SB but I do love albumplayer though, I have tried squeeze centre without the hardware and AP is much faster and easier to use even for people who have never used a pc I would say, but the whole idea of the squeeze box is becoming more attractive to me all the time. I didn’t even know about the moose extra.

I think I would still rather just buy the receivers than having to buy the remote control also. I have never seen it in the flesh but It looks a little gimmicky to me, im not sure about it. I could probably get an iphone cheaper( at least second hand) to control it rather than the dedicated remote and get all the features of the ipod also. But it seems like a very tricky job setting the reciver up with out it, I read a little on the Net:UDap application and that seems over complicated, im not sure what to do with it.

tcutting
2010-03-09, 12:49
FYI - the receivers are "supposed" to be available for sale outside of the Duet package, but currently they cannot be found at any US retailers INCLUDING logitech - posts from Logitech employees claim they are supposed to fix the situation, but to my knowledge it hasn't happened.
You might consider the "Classic" (aka Squeezebox3). It's a discontinued model, but I believe it's still available from several retailers, the sound quality is basically equal to the receiver, but it has a screen and IR remote, is very easy to setup and is a very stable product. It also has digital outputs (optical and coax) to allow connection to external DAC.

aubuti
2010-03-09, 13:19
You might consider the "Classic" (aka Squeezebox3). It's a discontinued model, but I believe it's still available from several retailers, the sound quality is basically equal to the receiver, but it has a screen and IR remote, is very easy to setup and is a very stable product. It also has digital outputs (optical and coax) to allow connection to external DAC.
And like the SB Receiver, you can control an SB3 via iPhone or iPod Touch, the SBS web interface on your computer, Moose, SB Controller, etc.

The SBS software isn't fast, but imo SBs are designed so that the primary user interface is remote control (any remote control), not sitting at your computer. Ideally the computer isn't even in the same room.

west_sounds
2010-03-10, 04:11
I love the idea of the squeezebox wireless audio, but the squeeze centre software is slow and awkward’ish to use direct from a PC unlike Albumplayer. As one of the forum members said it was designed to be used from a remote rather than direct from PC. As for sound quality Albumplayer does include ASIO support which bypasses the normal audio path from AP through Windows operating system software, so that the application connects directly to the soundcard hardware.

As much as I think the SB is a great product and the hardware is probably the best out there at the moment value for money wise, the software side of it just puts me off actually buying one.

Phil Leigh
2010-03-10, 04:37
I love the idea of the squeezebox wireless audio, but the squeeze centre software is slow and awkward’ish to use direct from a PC unlike Albumplayer. As one of the forum members said it was designed to be used from a remote rather than direct from PC. As for sound quality Albumplayer does include ASIO support which bypasses the normal audio path from AP through Windows operating system software, so that the application connects directly to the soundcard hardware.

As much as I think the SB is a great product and the hardware is probably the best out there at the moment value for money wise, the software side of it just puts me off actually buying one.

I don't know about awkwardish as that's clearly a personal preference... but the Web UI that I use all the time is rather quick on my 2.7Ghz Athlon running XP. I mean sub 2 seconds for most things, sub-second to play an album...

Moose is virtually instantaneous...

ModelCitizen
2010-03-10, 05:01
Personally I run the server software but only really used it to configure my sound players originally. For day to day control I use the very snappy and simple to use iPeng on my iPhone and iPod. IMHO this control method is far superior to that offered by the SBS interface, Moose, or anything that involves using a clunky computer/laptop.

Setting up the receivers is still a problem though (and indeed buying them it seems).

MC

Phil Leigh
2010-03-10, 05:07
Personally I run the server software but only really used it to configure my sound players originally. For day to day control I use the very snappy and simple to use iPeng on my iPhone and iPod. IMHO this control method is far superior to that offered by the SBS interface, Moose, or anything that involves using a clunky computer/laptop.

Setting up the receivers is still a problem though (and indeed buying them it seems).

MC

I just happen to have a screen, mouse and keyboard next to my listening position (the server is elsewhere) - if I didn't I'd use the remote or iPeng

aubuti
2010-03-10, 05:43
I love the idea of the squeezebox wireless audio, but the squeeze centre software is slow and awkward’ish to use direct from a PC unlike Albumplayer. As one of the forum members said it was designed to be used from a remote rather than direct from PC. As for sound quality Albumplayer does include ASIO support which bypasses the normal audio path from AP through Windows operating system software, so that the application connects directly to the soundcard hardware.

As much as I think the SB is a great product and the hardware is probably the best out there at the moment value for money wise, the software side of it just puts me off actually buying one.
If you plan to do most of the controlling while sitting at a computer, are satisfied with the quality of your sound card, and don't plan to have more than one player (either sync'd or playing different streams) then it sounds like you're effectively looking for a long (wireless) extension cord for your PC, and Albumplayer may meet your needs better.

west_sounds
2010-03-10, 06:48
a long wireless extention lead has been mentioned. but what? and the quality has to be high, if not quite as good as SB then something which is high quality No FM transmitter.

aubuti
2010-03-10, 07:43
My neighbor has a Linksys WMB54G Wireless-G Music Bridge. It appears to be discontinued by Linksys, but you can find it on Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Linksys-Cisco-WMB54G-Wireless-G-Bridge/dp/B000E5E6KG). It appears to use wifi (TCP/IP). It looks like a bit of a kludge to me, and he is only semi-happy with it.

There's also Logitech's "Wireless DJ" system, which they had before acquiring SlimDevices and the SB line. I think that is also discontinued, but may still be available on Amazon. It uses 2.4GHz, but I suspect it's cordless phone/baby monitor technology, not wifi. And then there's Apple's Airport Express -- does that require iTunes?

In your original post you said sound quality is your highest priority. None of these have sound quality as good as an SB, nor are they nearly as flexible. But if using Albumplayer is really your highest priority, one of these may be the way for you to go.

JeffHart
2010-03-10, 07:54
Sorry if I was unclear - you're describing the Rocketfish solution or something like it - no cables, wireless, not FM, etc. This is not an endorsement - saw them at Best Buy one day and remembered them.

http://www.rocketfishproducts.com/pc-217-5-rocketfish-wireless-hd-audio-starter-kit.aspx

Given this is a Squeezebox forum, most of us here are biased towards the Squeezebox since we've decided it meets our needs. There may be more familiarity with alternative solutions on general audio forms such as Audio Asylum. Please don't take this as discouragement from looking at the Squeezebox solution - I love mine and use it daily, sync'ing songs from my kitchen to the bedroom to my office as I move throughout the day, scrobbling everything to last.fm, using it to listen to NPR Wait Wait Don't Tell Me, when my wife and I have time in the evening playing cribbage instead of when we are running around Saturday morning, etc.

With the exception of snyc'ing you can probably do 95-100% of that with Albumplayer - not sure how it handles podcasts or scrobbling if it does.

On the otherhand, I have a spare server in my basement. I guess having a 'spare' server basically means I'm enough of a geek to deal with any software and setup issues. Which have been minimal, but have on more than once occasioned the use of fancy language (cursive). All in all, my setups been stable over the last four upgrades, with the exception of having to reset a receiver or the controller a couple of times a year.

Anyway - if you can check out the Rocketfish and let us know what works and what doesn't - price, setup, etc. - maybe someone will know of an alternate.

west_sounds
2010-03-10, 09:24
Thanks for all the posts it has really given me something to think about. There is no doubt that the Squeeze box is a fantastic product and I can see its appeal. I don’t think it is going to be easy to get the best possible sound and with the interface that we like to use in our house.

Going on what ive been reading on the net I think the only way I will get the highest sound quality is not with a wireless device at all, but to plug my laptops usbs direct into something like the dacmagic or V-DAC.

I would also love to have the flexibility of wireless. I think my main amp & speakers when funds allow will be connected direct to a DAC via Albumplayer with ASIO enabled. For now if I can get some sort of wireless system for casual listening in my other room which is high quality for all the family to use I would be happy.

I haven’t totally ruled out the SB yet. Another issue is it has taken me a long time to get all the album covers, tracks and artists etc configured properly with AP and as I have a huge collection I don’t fancy the task of tiding all that up again. Plus the albumplayer is very simple to use, even when we have guests play with it they are amazed and love it. The rockfish may be an alternative, I will have a look into it.

tcutting
2010-03-10, 09:35
Thanks for all the posts it has really given me something to think about. There is no doubt that the Squeeze box is a fantastic product and I can see its appeal. I don’t think it is going to be easy to get the best possible sound and with the interface that we like to use in our house.

Going on what ive been reading on the net I think the only way I will get the highest sound quality is not with a wireless device at all, but to plug my laptops usbs direct into something like the dacmagic or V-DAC.

I would also love to have the flexibility of wireless. I think my main amp & speakers when funds allow will be connected direct to a DAC via Albumplayer with ASIO enabled. For now if I can get some sort of wireless system for casual listening in my other room which is high quality for all the family to use I would be happy.

I haven’t totally ruled out the SB yet. Another issues is it has taken me a long time to get all the album covers, tracks and artists etc configured properly with AP and as I have a huge collection I don’t fancy the task of tiding all that up again. Plus the albumplayer is very simple to use, even when we have guests play with it they are amazed and love it. The rockfish may be an alternative, I will have a look into it.

I would argue with your statement that "the only way I will get the highest sound quality is not with a wireless device at all, but to plug my laptops usbs direct into something like the dacmagic or V-DAC." With the squeezebox setup, the fact that it's wireless doesn't affect the sound quality. The only issue with wireless is that it's possible to have some type of interference which could cause buffers to underrun, resulting in a dropout. As long as the network is stable, the quality of the sound is determined SOLELY by the player hardware. As the squeezebox player is isolated from things like noisy power supplies, fans and other EMI emmiters which are present in a PC, this eliminates a potential degradation effect which would be present on any type of PC. Second, the Squeezebox hardware is designed as a music player, with attention paid to the audio circuitry, clock generation, for the best audio possible.
As far as album covers, etc, if tagging and album covers are clean, SBS should be able to use that as-is. Out of curiosity, what format are your music files in? How is cover art stored? I don't know if you've actually tried Squeezeboxserver? It's downloadable for free. In fact, before I had a peice of Squeezebox hardware, I had the server up and running, and used a laptop with "Softsqueeze" to get a real feel for how the system works. You could try something similar, possibly with Squeezeplay as a software player emulator, to get a feel for how compatible your existing music files and tags are with Squeezebox server. Be aware, however, that the "software" players don't measure up to the performance and stability of the dedicated "hardware" players.

Phil Leigh
2010-03-10, 09:48
Yeah I totally disagree with that statement! - Whilst the V-DAC is for sure a good DAC, using the USB port of any computer is NOT going to give the absolute best possible quality. Using wireless or ethernet to interconnect computer with "DAC" is preferable - no noise/ground loops! (and I don't mean mains hum...).

However, of course, you may not notice and that's fine. I just couldn't let a statement like that pass unchallenged :-)

west_sounds
2010-03-10, 15:24
I would argue with your statement that "the only way I will get the highest sound quality is not with a wireless device at all, but to plug my laptops usbs direct into something like the dacmagic or V-DAC." With the squeezebox setup, the fact that it's wireless doesn't affect the sound quality. The only issue with wireless is that it's possible to have some type of interference which could cause buffers to underrun, resulting in a dropout. As long as the network is stable, the quality of the sound is determined SOLELY by the player hardware. As the squeezebox player is isolated from things like noisy power supplies, fans and other EMI emmiters which are present in a PC, this eliminates a potential degradation effect which would be present on any type of PC. Second, the Squeezebox hardware is designed as a music player, with attention paid to the audio circuitry, clock generation, for the best audio possible.
As far as album covers, etc, if tagging and album covers are clean, SBS should be able to use that as-is. Out of curiosity, what format are your music files in? How is cover art stored? I don't know if you've actually tried Squeezeboxserver? It's downloadable for free. In fact, before I had a peice of Squeezebox hardware, I had the server up and running, and used a laptop with "Softsqueeze" to get a real feel for how the system works. You could try something similar, possibly with Squeezeplay as a software player emulator, to get a feel for how compatible your existing music files and tags are with Squeezebox server. Be aware, however, that the "software" players don't measure up to the performance and stability of the dedicated "hardware" players.

Most of my music files are 320kbs mp3s but I have a lot of FLAC files also and it is now my preferred format. The cover art is a small jpg in the file with the music files, artist / album in different folders.

I have had a little play with moose tonight and it is a nice interface and im sure it should only get better with time. I think I will look out for a squeeze box now as you all have convinced me with the quality and the DAC that is in it will be fine as it is to start im sure. But I would rather get two recivers rather than one and a remote. This is probably another post but does anyone know a simplified way to get them configured without the remote?

aubuti
2010-03-10, 15:29
But I would rather get two recivers rather than one and a remote. This is probably another post but does anyone know a simplified way to get them configured without the remote?
At present your only options for configuring the SBR are (a) the SB Controller, or (b) the Net::UDAP utility. I haven't used Net::UDAP, but I've seen the instructions and seems well documented. I've also seen non-technically-inclined users get successfully walked through using Net::UDAP by helpful forum members here. It may look daunting to you now, but if you can follow directions I think you'll be fine with Net::UDAP.

MrSinatra
2010-03-10, 15:49
ever since i got a SB, i have felt the same way:

love the hardware, want to use it, but generally really dislike the software.

why slim/logitech won't develop plugins to let things like itunes, winamp, and WMP power the hardware i have never figured out. it would be SO popular, and isn't it the hardware that generates revenue, while the complex SBS software is just a R&D cost $ drain?

i know SBS has some sync features and so on that you must use it for, but most people don't need or want that, and if they did, they could use SBS already. but most people i know just want to power some HQ hardware simply, with software they already like and know how to use.

i hate itunes, but i love winamp. i would much rather use winamp to power my SB. you would think logitech would like their hardware, which is where they get revenue, to appeal to anyone who wants to combine digital music with a stereo. but no, they force SBS on you if you want to use the hardware. its a real shame and missed opportunity imo. no reason you couldn't have both.

aubuti
2010-03-10, 20:29
you would think logitech would like their hardware, which is where they get revenue, to appeal to anyone who wants to combine digital music with a stereo. but no, they force SBS on you if you want to use the hardware. its a real shame and missed opportunity imo. no reason you couldn't have both.
I think it's easy to underestimate how much of Logitech's limited and diminishing software development resources would be required to write and maintain a plugin for some other company's software. And then there are the support costs. Slimproto is an open protocol, so it's a perfect opportunity for a winamp/SB enthusiast with programming skills, but there doesn't seem to be any flurry of activity on that front. Maybe the market's is smaller than you think.

Interesting what you find on a search though. I don't think I ever knew about winamp's SliMP3 plugin before. Looks pretty primitive, but it's real software. (http://www.winamp.com/plugin/slimp3-server-for-winamp2/134210)

MrSinatra
2010-03-10, 20:55
I think it's easy to underestimate how much of Logitech's limited and diminishing software development resources would be required to write and maintain a plugin for some other company's software.

depends how its done. if it was simply a middleware layer, that took the digi-soundcard audio and sent it to the hardware, then it would basically be invisible aside from a settings/prefs dialog, and only need updated every once in a great while for the OS it was on.

if it was a plugin, it could be somewhat more intense. but one lone guy cracked the airport express so winamp can power it.

but either way would be a lot LESS intense, than developing your own app, and either way would be a lot more flexible than requiring a user/potential customer install/learn your own proprietary app. and either way would cost less to develop.

and having such options would make the hardware, where the money is, accessible to a lot more people, and attractive as a legit option to buy.


And then there are the support costs.

surely supporting SBS is more expensive than supporting a plugin?


Slimproto is an open protocol, so it's a perfect opportunity for a winamp/SB enthusiast with programming skills, but there doesn't seem to be any flurry of activity on that front. Maybe the market's is smaller than you think.

i don't think thats it. i think the amount of people who love SB and winamp AND who can not only program, but have the time to do it for free, is a very, VERY small number.

besides, why would people buy a solution that doesn't do what they want it to? if i were a winamp user wanting hardware support, i'd find hardware it could already support, like the airport express.

if one day there is some kind of non-SBS solution for powering the hardware via other apps, i think you'd find it HUGELY popular.


Interesting what you find on a search though. I don't think I ever knew about winamp's SliMP3 plugin before. Looks pretty primitive, but it's real software. (http://www.winamp.com/plugin/slimp3-server-for-winamp2/134210)

its not a plugin. its an early version of slim server (unless i'm mistaken).

west_sounds
2010-03-11, 02:53
ever since i got a SB, i have felt the same way:

love the hardware, want to use it, but generally really dislike the software.

why slim/logitech won't develop plugins to let things like itunes, winamp, and WMP power the hardware i have never figured out. it would be SO popular, and isn't it the hardware that generates revenue, while the complex SBS software is just a R&D cost $ drain?

i know SBS has some sync features and so on that you must use it for, but most people don't need or want that, and if they did, they could use SBS already. but most people i know just want to power some HQ hardware simply, with software they already like and know how to use.

i hate itunes, but i love winamp. i would much rather use winamp to power my SB. you would think logitech would like their hardware, which is where they get revenue, to appeal to anyone who wants to combine digital music with a stereo. but no, they force SBS on you if you want to use the hardware. its a real shame and missed opportunity imo. no reason you couldn't have both.

I agree and as one other member said it is all about personal preference. I think even though the software is useable some people prefer to use what they want to use and it’s the hardware that is the best part of it.

Software is always changing I would have thought that it has to be best to make hardware that can be used with what ever is the user wants or what the fashion is at the moment.

Hopefully Logitech will read some of this and take it on board.

moley6knipe
2010-03-11, 04:49
I think the beauty of these devices is choice, myself: you can use the IR remote, or a Controller, or an SB Touch, or an iPod Touch with one of the 3rd party remotes, or a web interface. You can install to a NAS if you want. Or you can choose to use mysqueezebox.com and leave your computer off.

Having said that I agree with previous posts about the web interface: it is slow, even on a well-specified machine; I couldn't personally use it all the time, I use the IR until I've got enough pennies for an iPod touch and iPeng.

The key thing for me is how good Squeezeboxes sound and, in my experience, they work every time I want to listen to music. Some previous players I've had took, erm, "tinkering" before they'd produce noise.

JeffHart
2010-03-11, 06:31
Software is always changing I would have thought that it has to be best to make hardware that can be used with what ever is the user wants or what the fashion is at the moment.

Hopefully Logitech will read some of this and take it on board.

Ok - you've got your wish. The Squeeze setup is pretty well documented - the hardware can be used with what ever software author wants to support it. It's not a hardware problem, it's a software problem. It's up to the software authors, like Albumplayer, to step up if they want to provide customers the ability to use third party hardware. Or they can wait until Logitech sees a customer demand for that specific application large enough to buy its way into the development plan. Or for an independent author to create the integration - depends on how open the ISV is with their internals/APIs.

Logitech can either focus on improving the SBS UX or becoming dependent on the viability, popularity and goodwill of third party ISVs. That's a pretty hard business case to make. From what I've seen the priority is on 1) Good hardware 2) Functional Software 3) Extensibility to other music player/managers (iTunes) and services - Pandora, Last.fm, etc.

As time moves forward the plan should be a well balanced approach - new hardware to open new market segments and retain current markets, better software to improve UX and more options with third party software and services. Without an unlimited budget they are faced with the traditional triangle of project management - schedule (time), resources and scope.

The new releases of the Radio, Touch, SBS 7.4x and new applications indicate that this is the route Logitech is taking and either unexpected problems with resources or scope are impacting schedule and delaying the Touch. I'd certainly bet that getting the Touch out the door is priority 1 at this point, since hardware is the basic revenue driver.

west_sounds
2010-03-11, 19:20
ive been playing with the squeeze centre all night and i have really come to the conclusion now that it is terrible. I gave it a few days just to make sure i wasn’t being unfair but the SB software is absolutely dismal. the hardware is first class probably the best out there but it is horribly let down with its software. even playing with the moose interface is awful. its just slow and clunky to use. they have a great product here which could be so much better its a shame.

there is no way i could live with that software I have just uninstalled the lot, squeezecentre, squeezeplay and moose. as good as the hardware is because of the software it is not for me, I will wait for an alternative. The way technology is moving on I shouldn’t have to wait too long.

Hopefully some of the software writers will get something sorted for it soon.

I know its may be personal preference and I even considered getting rid of Albumplayer if the software was OK but there really is no contest.

Phil Leigh
2010-03-12, 02:08
ive been playing with the squeeze centre all night and i have really come to the conclusion now that it is terrible. I gave it a few days just to make sure i wasn’t being unfair but the SB software is absolutely dismal. the hardware is first class probably the best out there but it is horribly let down with its software. even playing with the moose interface is awful. its just slow and clunky to use. they have a great product here which could be so much better its a shame.

there is no way i could live with that software I have just uninstalled the lot, squeezecentre, squeezeplay and moose. as good as the hardware is because of the software it is not for me, I will wait for an alternative. The way technology is moving on I shouldn’t have to wait too long.

Hopefully some of the software writers will get something sorted for it soon.

I know its may be personal preference and I even considered getting rid of Albumplayer if the software was OK but there really is no contest.

Out of curiousity I downloaded the demo version of AlbumPlayer - here are my initial impressions (which are obviously skewed by the fact I am not familiar with the software!)

1) took 45 minutes+ to scan in my 32k Track database + about 15 more minutes to finish off gathering the artwork from my cover.jpg files - so about half the speed of 7.5Embedded on the same machine. CPU was pretty 50% pegged during this time (single core machine).

2) No handling of multi-disc sets

3) search/filter function works on songs or artist or album titles - but not across all 3 at once. However, it does use progresive keystroke matching (like MusicIP). Partially because of the progressive matching, the searching is extremely quick - a few milliseconds after your last keystroke, compared to about a second on SBS

4) No integration with MIP that I could yet find (?)

5) the browse lists are horrible - well, the lists are OK but the scrolling gives me a headache as it jerks around - it's hard to explain in words what it does but I don't like it.
6) The app has a slightly "Windows Media Player ish" feel to it
7) the inbuilt tag editing is... dangerous
8) The artist browse supports "artist artwork", which is nice, although I don't want to be reminded what a lot of 60's rock bands actually looked like :-)



All in all, it looks like a nice app if you like the Windows highly graphical approach. It is quick (but does anyone really need that speed? - I like to relax when listening to music...)

Of course,the lack of MIP, multi-room sync, dependency on a Windows PC etc make it a rather different
sort of application.


Just thought I'd offer an alternate view...
Phil

alfista
2010-03-12, 03:51
there is no way i could live with that software I have just uninstalled the lot, squeezecentre, squeezeplay and moose. as good as the hardware is because of the software it is not for me, I will wait for an alternative. The way technology is moving on I shouldn’t have to wait too long.

Hopefully some of the software writers will get something sorted for it soon.

Then again, you never wanted Squeezebox to begin with. What you wanted was some kind of "wirelessly attached remote soundcard, sort of", and that's not really what Squeezebox is about. Never has been and I dare say it never will be. I think you will be have better luck with products that follow a paradigm closer to what you want rather than trying to get Squeezebox to do something it was never intended to do.

toby10
2010-03-12, 04:42
SB players are about not needing direct computer interaction for music playback combined with excellent audio output. I’d bet the vast majority of SB users access the web UI control mostly for management, settings, and maintenance purposes. For enjoying their music collection (or the extensive list of offered Music Services) they just use the hardware remotes (IR, Controller, iPhone, iTouch, Nokia, etc…).

I do understand your desire for web UI usage for all playback control, many would agree with you and do so themselves. It’s just not what I and the typical SB user desire for playback usage.

SBS will never win any UI design competitions as this is not the focus of this server platform. It ain’t pretty, but it’s interface with SB players is beautiful! :)

Phil Leigh
2010-03-12, 04:58
SB players are about not needing direct computer interaction for music playback combined with excellent audio output. I’d bet the vast majority of SB users access the web UI control mostly for management, settings, and maintenance purposes. For enjoying their music collection (or the extensive list of offered Music Services) they just use the hardware remotes (IR, Controller, iPhone, iTouch, Nokia, etc…).

I do understand your desire for web UI usage for all playback control, many would agree with you and do so themselves. It’s just not what I and the typical SB user desire for playback usage.

SBS will never win any UI design competitions as this is not the focus of this server platform. It ain’t pretty, but it’s interface with SB players is beautiful! :)

All good points - I keep forgetting I'm in the 1% that uses the WEB UI mostly (because I happen to have a screen/keyboard/mouse right next to where I sit to listen to my main system. On the Radio and Boom I mostly use the onboard knobs/controls. I only ever use the Touch IR (actually a Harmony One) to start a firmware upgrade or do a hardware reset... :-)

bernt
2010-03-12, 05:41
I'm a very satisfied web ui user. Sometimes I even prefer it over iPeng.

west_sounds
2010-03-12, 06:31
Out of curiousity I downloaded the demo version of AlbumPlayer - here are my initial impressions (which are obviously skewed by the fact I am not familiar with the software!)

1) took 45 minutes+ to scan in my 32k Track database + about 15 more minutes to finish off gathering the artwork from my cover.jpg files - so about half the speed of 7.5Embedded on the same machine. CPU was pretty 50% pegged during this time (single core machine).

2) No handling of multi-disc sets

3) search/filter function works on songs or artist or album titles - but not across all 3 at once. However, it does use progresive keystroke matching (like MusicIP). Partially because of the progressive matching, the searching is extremely quick - a few milliseconds after your last keystroke, compared to about a second on SBS

4) No integration with MIP that I could yet find (?)

5) the browse lists are horrible - well, the lists are OK but the scrolling gives me a headache as it jerks around - it's hard to explain in words what it does but I don't like it.
6) The app has a slightly "Windows Media Player ish" feel to it
7) the inbuilt tag editing is... dangerous
8) The artist browse supports "artist artwork", which is nice, although I don't want to be reminded what a lot of 60's rock bands actually looked like :-)



All in all, it looks like a nice app if you like the Windows highly graphical approach. It is quick (but does anyone really need that speed? - I like to relax when listening to music...)

Of course,the lack of MIP, multi-room sync, dependency on a Windows PC etc make it a rather different
sort of application.


Just thought I'd offer an alternate view...
Phil


A lot of the settings you described above can be modified in the preferences page. things like album tag editing can be changed so no one can alter them, there is a fair bit to it. Its the SB hardware that I would really like as they use great dacs and they are well known for their high quality sound. I have found something which may be more of what im after but its such a new product that there are no reviews on it yet , the QED u-play. I may risk it and buy the QED or I have also downloaded a trial version of the airfoil software for the airport express which works very well with AP apart from a slight delay in the sound, I am guessing that it would be the same if I had the airport connected.