Personal Stereo "MP3" Players

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Personal Stereo "MP3" Players

Postby davecs » Mon Oct 24, 2005 1:25 pm

A bit of good news on this front.

A Korean firm called "Cowon" is producing a number of Players which, as well as mp3, wav and wma, also play back oggvorbis and even flac files. They are called "iAudio".

No fancy software is needed to load the files onto the player. As long as your "ripper" titles the files it produces in track order, that's how they run within each subfolder. You can use XMMS, Amarok, Kaffeine etc, to save playlist M3U files onto your unit, and someone has posted a script to turn the "slashes" and linebreaks to make them Windows-compatible - the only problem that Linux users are likely to have.

The sound quality is said to far exceed the iPod. The body of the 20Gb+ HDD players is real metallic Aluminium, not plastic in disguise, and it feels as solid as a rock.

Sites to take a look are

www.cowon.com
www.cowonamerica.com
www.iaudio.com

The latest one, the M5, is purely an audio player (no radio, piccies or video clips) and this is the one I am getting. There is a thicker version, the M5L, which has a larger battery inside, giving 30 hours playback instead of the standard 14.

The one with all the extras is the X5 or X5L

Finally, MISCO (http://www.misco.co.uk) are doing very good prices on the M5L and X5L.

I know this is a bit of a gushing advert, but in these days of iPod and iRiver with their proprietory formats, it is refreshing to see a simple HDD music player with simple file management and open systems available.
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RE: Personal Stereo "MP3" Players

Postby nelz » Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:03 pm

I have an iRiver H320 and it uses no proprietary formats as far as I can tell. I appears as a standard USB mass storage device and accepts files in any directory hierarchy you care to use. The only files that is at all non-standard is the database file, which is used to speed up scanning the drive. There's a Linux program to (re)generate this file.
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RE: Personal Stereo "MP3" Players

Postby davecs » Mon Oct 24, 2005 7:25 pm

Sorry about that Nelz, I was reading somewhere that some new iRivers needed an unofficial firmware upgrade to make them function as standard USB Mass Storage. Maybe the author was mistaken, and I should apologise for repeating it.

Still, nice to see another iPod beater on the market, for us more discerning (ahem) types, eh?
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RE: Personal Stereo "MP3" Players

Postby linuxgirlie » Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:17 pm

ohhhhhh, Rio Karma, the best Ogg player ever, maybe a bit chunky but it works with Linux out of the box, provides (java though) software on the CD and is fantastic....
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RE: Personal Stereo "MP3" Players

Postby nelz » Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:37 pm

That may be true, I can only speak for the H300 series.
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RE: Personal Stereo "MP3" Players

Postby linuxgirlie » Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:39 pm

;) Everyone states what they have used is better than everyone else....its just the way.............lol
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RE: Personal Stereo "MP3" Players

Postby nelz » Tue Oct 25, 2005 1:26 pm

or the worst, depending on their experience with it.
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Postby davecs » Wed Oct 26, 2005 12:45 pm

I haven't even heard mine yet. I had to order it, it is now in my wife's custody until December 25th. BTW I can also tell you that should anyone get the iAudio, "pixmania" has by far the cheapest utilities for it, should you want the remote control, cradle or leather case.

I had to get my order in first before letting on, I don't want to be left without!
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