you and your mp3 player

PCs, laptops, macs, mp3 players, consoles, peripherals
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Jono Volpone
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Jono Volpone » Sun Dec 21, 2008 23:07

Sootyzilla wrote:you can watch real train videos on youtube, why bother with the simulator?
Oh, it's all Humblebee and Crystalball's fault. Anyway, you can see some pretty spectacular crashes on train sim on youtube! For example: -

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=A_9PnlPNaAc
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humblebee
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by humblebee » Mon Dec 22, 2008 09:50

This whole thing with the Ipod, where it encodes all the music files so you can't just use Windows Explorer or whatever to drag and drop stuff, and you have to use Apple's software. Right, well. It strikes me as exactly the sort of dirty trick that Apple groupies are forever slating Microsoft for. But because of all the bullshit Apple mythology that IT hipsters buy into ("oh, they're not really a big rapacious multinational company just like all the others, because, um, design, look, it *looks* really cool), nobody seems to question it when it's Apple; it's just accepted.

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crystalball
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by crystalball » Mon Dec 22, 2008 10:52

Jono Volpone wrote:No, that's a very handy post, as I'd already forgotten about that (in all my excitement over watching train Simulator videos on Youtube!).
And I'd completely forgotten about the train simulator crashes on Youtube - that's my last day at work sorted then.

Blimey, that was one kerrrazy half hour we spent in humblebee's kitchen.

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Thee SPC
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Thee SPC » Mon Dec 22, 2008 10:57

tonieee wrote:Also one of my main requirements for an mp3 player is that it behaves as a usb drive so you don't have to install extra drivers for it which I believe rules out ipod and creative.
This is the reason I opted for an iRiver player. Admittedly this was about 5 years ago(?) when it was a genuinely excellent alternative to an ipod (pre-shuffle, nano, touch, etc.) I've still got the player & it still works fine - looks terribly dated, mind!

Ironically, since I started working from home, I hardly ever use the iRiver & i've got my office set up so that my HiFi, vinly & cds are right next to my pc. In the last month I've probably listened to vinyl more than any other format. I do appreciate that I'm a bit on an anomaly, so it's been fascinating to read this thread. It's also got me thinking about what the hell i'm gonna do with Thee SPC in 2009, 'cos people just aren't buying physical records as much as they did. Kinda makes me think our record label is becoming redundant and I'm doubtful that downloads can fill the gap. But that's a different issue.

I've recently installed iTunes, just out of curiousity, ad it's quite impressive. Thnk I'll hold off on getting into the whole ipod culture until I really have to!

I do listen to a fair few MP3s on my pc, but the drive where I hold all my music is starting to 'creak' with age. Files aren't playing properly - they jump, skip, get stuck - and it's that having all your eggs in one basket nature of storing them on one drive that worries me. Year, sure you can have a backup system, but if your drive goes, you've still go to shell out for a new one and then do the recovery. And don't get me started on upgrading! In comparions, the very first CD I bought back in 1990 still plays beautfully & sounds much better than an MP3.

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crystalball
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by crystalball » Mon Dec 22, 2008 11:06

Thee SPC wrote:I've recently installed iTunes, just out of curiousity, ad it's quite impressive. Thnk I'll hold off on getting into the whole ipod culture until I really have to!
Bah, there's no Ipod culture. It's just an mp3 player. Like humblebee said, the annoying Apple things of not letting it function with anything other than Itunes make it all sound like it's a bit cultish and special but in reality they make a really good mp3 player inflexible because you always need a computer with Itunes installed to load files on to it.

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Thee SPC
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Thee SPC » Mon Dec 22, 2008 11:15

crystalball wrote:
Thee SPC wrote:I've recently installed iTunes, just out of curiousity, ad it's quite impressive. Thnk I'll hold off on getting into the whole ipod culture until I really have to!
Bah, there's no Ipod culture. It's just an mp3 player. Like humblebee said, the annoying Apple things of not letting it function with anything other than Itunes make it all sound like it's a bit cultish and special but in reality they make a really good mp3 player inflexible because you always need a computer with Itunes installed to load files on to it.
That's really what I meant. Ta for the summary, though! :) I've always felt rather unsure when it comes to "locking in" with a product or service. I guess I just prefer to keep my options open..

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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Wheatabeat » Mon Dec 22, 2008 11:24

crystalball wrote:
Thee SPC wrote:I've recently installed iTunes, just out of curiousity, ad it's quite impressive. Thnk I'll hold off on getting into the whole ipod culture until I really have to!
Bah, there's no Ipod culture. It's just an mp3 player. Like humblebee said, the annoying Apple things of not letting it function with anything other than Itunes make it all sound like it's a bit cultish and special but in reality they make a really good mp3 player inflexible because you always need a computer with Itunes installed to load files on to it.
Isn't Apple's theory about this because they don't want people to simply use the iPod like a hard drive to share stuff illegally with other people like you would a normal hard drive? I know dragging and dropping straight onto an MP3 player is the easiest way of doing such a task but aside from people who don't like iTunes/iPods because they're a bit fussy about the filing/tagging structure, what really is the big deal about the supposed inflexibility? The way I do it is I drag all the folders (containing films/MP3's etc.) I want into iTunes and just plug my iPod in and away I go. If you've multiple computers can't one just copy their music and have it on the other computers?

I'd be loathe to label myself as one of the "IT hipsters" that Humblebee speaks of, but I do find iTunes far more user friendly than any other similar beasts I've come across (admittedly only Windows Media Player and Creative Media). I've got quite a large library of stuff (getting to the 200Gb mark now) and the only gripe I really have is it gets a bit sluggish with large quantities of music and films, but it probably means I need a faster PC with more memory. And anyway, I hate things like phones because they're awkward, clunky and difficult to work out from phone to phone. I just like things I can use easily from the off.
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by SophieC » Mon Dec 22, 2008 11:33

i used to use winamp to upload my files onto my ipod, so it's not true that you're locked in to one particular piece of software. it may have been the case at one point though.

my 80 GB ipod classic is now at the cutting edge of paperweight technology haven finally wheezed into uselessness after about 14 months since purchase. after a couple of months the slightest knock to the headphone socket would cause the ipod to cut out and lock itself as if the headphones had been unexpectedly removed. which was massively annoying. i 'solved' the probelm by buying headphones with a rounded headphone socket so the jack no longer knocked against your pocket and turned itself off. then about six months in a splodge appeared on the screen which has very slowly spread across the screen to the point where i can no longer read anything on it. and the same day the screen went itunes stopped detecting the ipod and the hard disk makes strange wheezy noises.

i took the ipod to an apple approved dealer while still under warrant, where upon he walked me over to the accessory stand and said, "you should hacve bought one of these mate, a case." said it was a waste of postage sending the ipod off because they would just send it back and charge me a tenner for looking at it and then showed me a website where screen and headphone repair came to about £120, not far off the price of a new ipod. and i'm not paying that when i know my hard disk could conk out any day.

so up yours apple, i'm going to just listen to mix tape compilations on my walkman made for me by fans of the doors and the bluetones in 1997.
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Gordon » Mon Dec 22, 2008 18:07

The reason you have to use iTunes is that the iPod uses an arbitrary database to locate all the files (it's more efficient than using directory structure or having to scan the whole ipod to find music of a specific type). And yes it's supposed to make it more difficult to drag mp3s off the iPod (and this makes record labels more happy with it so keener to go along with the iTunes store). I imagine if other mp3 player manufactors were able to make a piece of software of similar quality, that they would. But why bother? They're not in the same business as Apple, really.
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tonieee
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by tonieee » Mon Dec 22, 2008 18:42

Gordon wrote:The reason you have to use iTunes is that the iPod uses an arbitrary database to locate all the files (it's more efficient than using directory structure or having to scan the whole ipod to find music of a specific type).
It could be made to do the same thing by having the iPod build up the database itself rather than it being done by software in you computer.
Gordon wrote:I imagine if other mp3 player manufactors were able to make a piece of software of similar quality, that they would.
This one fact makes it of such low quality that its of no use to me. But maybe I'm just weird in being particular about how I interact with my computer.
Gordon wrote:And yes it's supposed to make it more difficult to drag mp3s off the iPod (and this makes record labels more happy with it so keener to go along with the iTunes store).
Wheatabeat wrote:Isn't Apple's theory about this because they don't want people to simply use the iPod like a hard drive to share stuff illegally with other people like you would a normal hard drive? I know dragging and dropping straight onto an MP3 player is the easiest way of doing such a task but aside from people who don't like iTunes/iPods because they're a bit fussy about the filing/tagging structure, what really is the big deal about the supposed inflexibility? The way I do it is I drag all the folders (containing films/MP3's etc.) I want into iTunes and just plug my iPod in and away I go. If you've multiple computers can't one just copy their music and have it on the other computers?
If Apple are going to prevent me from using a device that I've paid money for in the way I want to because I *might* do something illegal with it even though it would be so easy for me to do the same with one of many other cheaper methods of copying files then there is no way I would ever consider buying anything from them.

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tonieee
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by tonieee » Mon Dec 22, 2008 18:45

humblebee wrote:This whole thing with the Ipod, where it encodes all the music files so you can't just use Windows Explorer or whatever to drag and drop stuff, and you have to use Apple's software. Right, well. It strikes me as exactly the sort of dirty trick that Apple groupies are forever slating Microsoft for. But because of all the bullshit Apple mythology that IT hipsters buy into ("oh, they're not really a big rapacious multinational company just like all the others, because, um, design, look, it *looks* really cool), nobody seems to question it when it's Apple; it's just accepted.
I've never owned an Apple and don't really know that much about them but it seems to me that Apple are worse than Microsoft at locking people into their hardware/software.

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Gordon
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Gordon » Mon Dec 22, 2008 22:34

It's a bit ironic that there's an accusation that Apple users gloss over the facts that is itself not borne out by the facts. You just need to check the Apple forums (which doesn't make that much sense if you don't own an apple). You're not exactly locked into the hardware, except that only Apple makes Mac computers (not completely, but basically true), however the user experience is better, and if at any time you get click of it, you can always switch to Linux or Windows on the same computer.

I like the way iTunes and iPods work, and other MP3 players have seemed a bit crappy to me. If these facts weren't true, I'd be more annoyed with apple, but it's always a case of weighing up the relative pros and cons.
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Gordon » Mon Dec 22, 2008 22:37

tonieee wrote:If Apple are going to prevent me from using a device that I've paid money for in the way I want to because I *might* do something illegal with it even though it would be so easy for me to do the same with one of many other cheaper methods of copying files then there is no way I would ever consider buying anything from them.
This is not completely logical reasoning. Not only is Apple preventing people from doing something which breaks the law, they are preventing people from doing something which would cause serious problems for their business of selling music. Compare it to the EU volume capping that exists on iPods. It's irritating, but it was forced to do it to comply with legislation. You can complain that you should be able to listen to any volume you like (and you probably can with the right line-out attachment) but you don't really have any legal grounds to). And of course you can always choose not to buy it. I just don't see what it's such a big deal. It's a product that works well, and that most people are very happy with.
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by tonieee » Mon Dec 22, 2008 23:27

Sorry I was having a little bit of a rant there. My excuse is I'd just got in from work and was grumpy cos I'd not had my tea yet. I'm all fed now and mellowed out with a glass of whiskey. I was talking bollocks about Apple, I have no idea or real opinion about them. And I do understand people like iPods and are probably a good at what they do but they're not for me. Though I stand by my comment that it's silly to make it so you can't just copy files to/from an iPod to stop people pirating music when they could just go and buy a USB hard drive or memory stick to do the same but maybe it isn't Apple's fault and was forced on them by the record companies.

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tonieee
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by tonieee » Tue Dec 23, 2008 00:12

I've just come across this which sounds quite good:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASI ... 000888g-21

has anybody ever had a go on one?

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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Gordon » Wed Dec 24, 2008 07:18

(looks a bit like a knock-off iPod touch)
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tonieee
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by tonieee » Wed Dec 24, 2008 08:28

Gordon wrote:(looks a bit like a knock-off iPod touch)
Except it does two things the touch doesn't do: works as a regular USB drive and plays FLAC files. I'm not so sure about it now anyway as I'm not keen on the idea of a touch screen interface - I like real buttons. The only touch screen interface I've used is on our sat nav thing which is really awful but that might be just that it's a rubbish one rather than touch screens in general are rubbish.

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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Gordon » Wed Dec 24, 2008 10:12

Well the iPod touch's screen is pretty awesome.

The iPod can probably play FLACs and OGG and things if you put Linux on it, but not very well. Which is to say, lots of iPod knockoffs do things like that, but not necessarily very well.
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Uncle Ants » Wed Dec 24, 2008 22:14

I really liked my Touch ... until it broke.
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Re: you and your mp3 player

Post by Gordon » Wed Dec 24, 2008 23:01

not under warranty?
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