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View Full Version : Looking for a SB Boom alternative / replacement



BlueScreenJunky
2011-01-11, 02:41
Hi everyone !
First I'd like to say that I'm a big fan of Slimdevices and I loved my squeezeboxes (one Boom and one "Classic"), I recommended them to some of my friends and would probably do it again.
However, every good thing comes to an end, and for various reasons I'd like to replace them. The Classic in my living room is in the process of being replaced by an HTPC (which used to host the squeezebox server) with xbmc and spotify.

However, I can't seem to find a decent replacement for the Boom, so I thought maybe you guys would have some ideas, here's what I need :
- Something with good sound quality (I could live with slightly lower SQ than the Boom)
- Which can play music from the network, preferably using uPnP.
- Which can reliably serve as an alarm clock to wake me and my gf up (so several alarms needed, snooze button, unobstrusive screen...)

Thanx !

Soulkeeper
2011-01-11, 03:34
Why don't you replace the Boom with a new Boom?

(Or tell us what those "various reasons" for replacing it are, so that we may understand where you're coming from?)

johnas
2011-01-11, 04:44
Sonos S5 would seemingly fit the bill, though it does not have a screen at all or a snooze button so you will need a remote of some kind (iDevice or Sonos remote).

I used to own an S5 but sold it as I preferred the boom. If you like the boom, IMHO you will lose more than you gain by getting the S5.

TheLastMan
2011-01-11, 04:57
Hi everyone !
First I'd like to say that I'm a big fan of Slimdevices and I loved my squeezeboxes (one Boom and one "Classic"), I recommended them to some of my friends and would probably do it again.
However, every good thing comes to an end, and for various reasons I'd like to replace them.

Why? Reasons Please! What was wrong with SqueezeBox and the Boom? You can get Spotify on the Boom with Triode's plugin running on your HTPC and / or if you replace your Classic with a Touch then it is, as of yesterday, available on MySqueezeBox.com. Initially this is a beta and only available if you have SBS, but once it is fully released in the next month or so you can get it without SBS.

Nobody makes an acceptable alternative to the Boom, except perhaps for some people the SqueezeBox Radio - which will also play Spotfiy via MySqueezeBox.com.

Only Sonos offers the same networked multi-room facilities as SqueezeBox, and they do not offer a portable, self-contained, "radio" type device at all. The S5 is very expensive, big and heavy and requires a separate controller.

As Maggie Thatcher used to say - TINA
(google it ;))

BlueScreenJunky
2011-01-22, 01:52
Sorry for taking so long to answer but I was pretty busy this week, plus I didn't want to turn this conversation into "should I replace my SB or not", because it will entirely depend on wether I find a good replacement or not.

Now as to why I would change here are the reasons : As I said I now have a HTPC in the living room right next to my Squeezebox classic, and since this computer (i3 540 underclocked/undervolted + Radeon HD5450 + Low voltage DDR3) uses much less power than my main computer I'll run squeezebox server on this computer. Which means I'll have the server right next to the squeezebox, which seems pretty pointless to me : I could as well use Foobar2000 (or maybe xbmc) and get rid of the squeezebox.

So that lets me with the Boom, which is the best alarm clock I've ever had but has always had pretty huge flaws for me : You can't crossfade when switching tracks manually, when you hit the "snooze" button while the volume is gradually increasing it goes all the way up before fading down, which never fails to wake my girlfriend up when she can sleep longer than me, there's still no native support for spotify, the alarm is unreliable when using web radios, I never managed to display exactly the info I wanted on the screen...
I used to think "these are on the bug tracker, they'll get fixed eventually" but let's face it : Development is not what it used to be, especially for ip3k devices... I even *think* I read a dev saying that there would be no new features for ip3k, which is a shame since the boom is still being sold (at least here in France) and only about 2 years old.

So all in all, I think I'm just disappointed that some bugs have been on the tracker for YEARS and will probably never get fixed, and I'd like to try a new toy :-P
Problem is, there's very little devices that can compete with the squeezeboxes. Sonos looks good but doesn't have the good form factor (I need an alarm clock), and most other connected alarm clocks are really cheap.


The only thing that might interest me right now is th Arnova web radio, but I'm affraid the LCD screen will be too bright at night (or you'll have to turn it off completely and you won't know what time it is) : http://www.archos.com/products/arnova/arn_webradiotv/index.html

johnas
2011-01-22, 14:49
Now as to why I would change here are the reasons : As I said I now have a HTPC in the living room right next to my Squeezebox classic, and since this computer (i3 540 underclocked/undervolted + Radeon HD5450 + Low voltage DDR3) uses much less power than my main computer I'll run squeezebox server on this computer. Which means I'll have the server right next to the squeezebox, which seems pretty pointless to me : I could as well use Foobar2000 (or maybe xbmc) and get rid of the squeezebox.

I personally find that XBMC is not good for music. Not sure what size of library you have, but it isn't great for navigating music. Plus you need the TV on. I haven't used Foobar in a number of years, does it have an interface for distance and remote support?



You can't crossfade when switching tracks manually, when you hit the "snooze" button while the volume is gradually increasing it goes all the way up before fading down,

I've never noticed this problem. What version of SBS are you running?



there's still no native support for spotify
You've been able to play spotify on the Boom with Triode's plugin for a while now, what's the problem?



the alarm is unreliable when using web radios,

Yup, relying on a remote stream to wake you up is risky. This will be the same for any device you use.



I never managed to display exactly the info I wanted on the screen...
I used to think "these are on the bug tracker, they'll get fixed eventually" but let's face it : Development is not what it used to be, especially for ip3k devices... I even *think* I read a dev saying that there would be no new features for ip3k, which is a shame since the boom is still being sold (at least here in France) and only about 2 years old.

Yeah no doubt development has slowed. With regards to new features, the Boom will benefit from enhancements to the server, new plugins etc. But my understanding is that the IPK3 devices are maxed out in terms of native codecs and processing, so yeah there isn't much else they could add.



The only thing that might interest me right now is th Arnova web radio,

If you decide to get that Archos, let us know how it compares to the boom.

BlueScreenJunky
2011-01-23, 07:53
xbmc now comes with an android remote control, so you can use it without the TV just like you'd use a Duet. But yeah I agree that it's not perfect for playing music.

I've read your other points but won't answer them, in an attempt to stay on topic ;-) (thanx for the input though).

StuartUSA
2011-02-15, 10:22
Just recently started playing with SqueezeServer after being a long time XBMC user, so far so good, the Squeeze handles music much better, although I still use XBMC from time to time.

The one thing I have done recently was to add squeezeslave on my XBMC machine. XBMC is setup to use the HDMI connector for sound, and video, so I configured squeezeslave to use the headphone jack which is wired into my amp. Works a treat and I use the web interface to control it from my PC, iPeng on my iPhone, slim control on an old WM PDA I had lying around, and squeezePlay on a touch screen. Would recommend trying it out....