Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

40GB RCA Lyra: Apple Fans Needn't Fret

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the picked-a-tough-task dept.

Portables 314

PaulEshoreLives writes "The Globe and Mail isn't taking too kindly to RCA's Lyra 40GB iPod 'competitor.' Amongst its gripes are a crazy-slow FFW. How slow? Like 6 minutes to get to the end of a 60 minute file. Gotta wonder how these things get missed at the beta stage."

cancel ×


Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Heil ! (1)

Adolf Hitroll (562418) | more than 9 years ago | (#10640955)

I'ed like to take this opportunity to remind you of the Goatse [] !

Lynndie England interview (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641079)

oh man. ah've gotta yeast infection. ah hear that they's ack-chully quite common. one tahm mah brother smashed 'is toy truck on mah head. ah loved dat truck. my mamma gave it tuh me. she sez, "here yuh go betty, here yuh go. ya'all go on en have some fun now. dis is your truck betty, dis is your truck." den after he smashed it, ah pulled my pants down and ran towards the doughboy. dare it was! it was mah dolly steven! i swam over to the other end and sqeezed my dolly. i said, "i love you, steven." and the dolly said, "thank you very much ma'am, i love you very much too!" he's mah boyfriend now. now dat duh real steven ain't around no mo'. he ran off tuh some other state. he told me everything would be ah-ight. den ah went over tuduh liquor stowe down duh street en bought me a small plastic rose innuh glass tube. steven always takes duh rose out en uses duh case ez a crack pipe. he burns muh titz up wit' dat pipe sometimes, he does-he does! but et's a differnt burn den duh yeast infection. uh thinks uh gotta yeast infection. muh daddy says det et's from not warshin' mah ginnertuls wit dah erttention dat et dizerves. he says yuh havetuh maintain yer vurgina like a lawn mowah. but when i pour gasoline intah mah hole it burns even more! especialy when uh lite it up! oh man. ah've gotta yeast infection

ffw ? (0)

mirko (198274) | more than 9 years ago | (#10640973)

What's a FFW [] ?

And have these 6 minutes something to do with the 17-minute file copying troll ?

Re:ffw ? (4, Informative)

jrandall (682594) | more than 9 years ago | (#10640987)

I believe what is being referred to is a ridiculously slow "Fast Forward" function.

Re:ffw ? (1)

mirko (198274) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641151)

How often do you fast forward when you use an iPod ?
BTW, besides Mike Oldfield Amarok, and a few Magma, Christian Vander or Offering songs, I do not have that much one hour long audio files.
I guess the reviewer wanted to say something bad about these because he felt so good about his iPod.
I understand this as I also am an happy iPod user but I do not have a problem with other's owning another potentially better player.

Re:ffw ? (1)

Rudeboy777 (214749) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641169)

I realize R'ing TFA is not in vogue, but if you did you would have seen that the reviewer uses his MP3 player for audio books.

Re:ffw ? (1)

geniusj (140174) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641319)

While you can fast forward on an iPod by holding down the next track button, the best way to span long distances is to press the center button and then scrub through the song/book with the scroll wheel. I'm guessing this player offers no such option, which is part of the problem.


Re:ffw ? (1, Funny)

beakerMeep (716990) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641245)

I think the article submitter must have meant a crazy slow Full Figured Woman.

Re:ffw ? (2, Interesting)

Rich Klein (699591) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641255)

Apparently the original poster felt that his Full-Figured Woman should move faster. :-P

I didn't see anything about 17-minute file copying in the article. What's that about?

Aside from the author's pro-ipod bias, I only have one issue with the article:
Tap the power button to turn it on. Unfortunately, it does not require you to hold the key to activate it and as such, it tends to get accidentally powered up in your pocket.

With the original OS, my Archos Jukebox Recorder [] required me to hold down the On button for something like 5 seconds to turn it on, and I found that to be a real PITA. With the Rockbox [] OS I only have to hold it down for about 1/2 a second to power up the unit, and I've never had it turn itself on in my pocket (or anywhere). My point is: Don't make the user hold the button down for any length of time to avoid accidental power-ups; design and place the power button properly instead!

dumbarse (-1, Offtopic)

REBloomfield (550182) | more than 9 years ago | (#10640982)

404 File Not Found
The requested URL (articles/04/10/27/1315231.shtml?tid=184&tid=141&t id=1) was not found.

If you feel like it, mail the url, and where ya came from to

Come to wonder how these things get missed at the mod stage....

Why should Apple fans fret? (4, Insightful)

3terrabyte (693824) | more than 9 years ago | (#10640988)

I don't understand the tone of the post. Why would a better product coming out years later be a bad thing for Apple fans?

Will it make your iPod quit working? Or make you love your iPod less?

Consumericanism. (-1, Troll)

torpor (458) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641015)

You know, that White-Picket Fence "keeping up with the Joneses" agitated nervousness that comes as a result of being breast-fed consumerican ethics from the day you were born ..

Its sickening, really, to watch consumericans eat themselves over such things as 'competitive marketplace economics', but hey, when you live in a society that has to mask its innate desire for fascism with product-owning mechanics, you're gonna get sick a lot ..

Re:Consumericanism. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641056)

Dear sir,
Your views intrigue me and I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

Re:Consumericanism. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641102)

Gee, you'd think someone with views as meticulously thought out as yours would realize that the Globe & Mail is a Toronto paper. Perhaps you have a similar screed about consumenadians, eh?

Re:Consumericanism. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641121)

Perhaps you have a similar screed about consumenadians, eh?

That's a type of soup, right?

Re:Consumericanism. (1)

torpor (458) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641228)

Typical .. you think just because there is 'merican' in there that I'm only talking about Americans?

No. There are consumericans here in Germany too. That this particularly nefarious social disease started in America, with its 'our cars are bigger than your car' doctrine, is immaterial to the actual meaning of the word.

Funny, though, that you would think that Consumericanism is only an American disease, given that countries predilection for exporting such things...

Re:Consumericanism. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641275)

What the fuck... you put most of a country's name in a word like that and then get vaginal when someone thinks you're talking about that country?

There's nothing about it or your comment that indicated it was meant to be a generic term encompassing people all over the world.

So take your sneer and cram it sideways.

Re:Consumericanism. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641296)

Apparently Canadians feel that they can be called "Americans" because they live in North America.

That's funny, because the last time I called a Canadian an "American" he launched into a 20-minute rant about how Americans are a bunch of fast-food-eating, SUV-driving, Republican-electing morons that are ruining the world.

Re:Consumericanism. (0, Offtopic)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641320)

"mask its innate desire for fascism?"

Huh? Where does that come from? From what theory is that derived?

Re:Why should Apple fans fret? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641076)

**Why would a better product coming out years later be a bad thing for Apple fans?**

you don't obviously understand apple fans and their level of commitment!

Re:Why should Apple fans fret? (5, Insightful)

pertinax18 (569045) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641082)

I had this same question. Do Apple fans really have so much of their self-worth, emotional well-being and identity tied up in the Apple products they use that a competitor would make them concerned? Perhaps the Apple Corporation would fret, but unless I am really missing something this is hardly a concern for iPod users as it will only force Apple to innovate more and create a better product.

Re:Why should Apple fans fret? (1, Funny)

ExKoopaTroopa (671002) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641114)

This is a just an apple-lover's way of saying "My iPod is bigger than your portable music player"

Re:Why should Apple fans fret? (1)

martingunnarsson (590268) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641116)

Mac fans don't want any competition for Apple. They want everybody to use macs, and tries to make all their friends buy Apple stuff. Believe me, I do :-)

Zealots, zealots zealots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641207)

Linux fans don't want any competition for Linux. They want everybody to use Linux, and tries to make all their friends use Linux.
Believe me, I do :-)

Re:Why should Apple fans fret? (1)

gumpish (682245) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641177)

Will it make your iPod quit working?

No, iPods do that on their own [] .

As for your sig...

Why are there only 19 people folding@home for slashdot?

In my case it's because their client is buggy. It would launch and quickly proceed to kill off the actual crunching engine. No worries, now that [] is back to running useful projects (like OGR) I can use them.

Re:Why should Apple fans fret? (4, Interesting)

mrtrumbe (412155) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641265)

Because Apple is the only manufacturer in the world whose batteries eventually die, right? Or is it that, IN THE PAST, they didn't have a battery replacement program?

IN THE PAST, they didn't have a way to fix the issue of a dead battery. That was bad. Bad Apple! But they fixed that problem. Now, they are just like every other manufacturer out there: your battery dies within the warranty period? You get it fixed for free. Your batter dies outside the warranty period, you pay to replace it (either through Apple, or through many of the "unofficial" sources available).

Can we stop grousing about this issue now? Please?


Re:Why should Apple fans fret? (1)

t123 (642988) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641185)

Apple Fans Needn't Fret. That means they should not worry [about the lyra being a better product]

Re:Why should Apple fans fret? (1)

PriceIke (751512) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641259)

TRUE Apple fans don't "fret" about competition in the market because they--okay, we--know that Apple designs and produces the best. To an Apple fan, 98% of Apple's competition just proves that Apple is the best. The remaining 2% is what drives Apple to continue to innovate and develop even better products.

Apple fans, being mostly fanatical zealots (myself included), will buy Apple products regardless of what else is available to them .. so we don't pay much attention to RCA or HP or Rio or Sony....

Hey, not all codecs .. (3, Informative)

torpor (458) | more than 9 years ago | (#10640992)

.. are conducive to rapid-scan indexing of frames.

Sure, on an uncompressed mpeg4, you can just fseek() where you need to go and pick right up, but some codecs (not gonna mention names) are designed with limitations that make faster-than-1x speed indexes exceedingly difficult for simple lower-power processors ..

Re:Hey, not all codecs .. (3, Interesting)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641043)

mp3 falls into that category. On a CBR file you can roughly just fseek to bitrate*seconds into the file and be approximately where you want to be.

Valid mp3 decoders must allow "garbage" data before a header. So

cat somerandomtxtfile.txt mysong.mp3 > new.mp3

new.mp3 is now a valid mp3 file/stream.

Chances are the testers aren't actually users which is why they didn't find a really slow FFW "a problem".

Though really cumbersome MP3 players are pretty much the norm. Mine [from Samsung of all companies...] doesn't sort the files so even though my tracks are numbered they never play in any particular order [and no this is with shuffle turned off]. It also "plays" as you seek which is annoying [so it's even slower than 6min/60min as this player has].


Re:Hey, not all codecs .. (1)

delus10n0 (524126) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641229)

A lot of MP3 decoders only allow so much garbage in the header (usually 16k, I believe?) before they just give up and declare the file not playable.

Re:Hey, not all codecs .. (4, Interesting)

CKW (409971) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641077)

Doesn't mp3 allow you to just "start somewhere" and begin playing? It's a streaming media protocol... They don't need to *process* 60 minutes of mp3, they just need to stop processing the mp3 while you're holding down the Fast ForWard (FFW) button, AND do a slow rise in the rate that the "time counter" is increasing....

My Lyra 64 MB SD mp3 player also has this problem, it only fast forwards at a fixed rate of about 10:1, which is entirely unacceptable for a "whole albumn" mp3. For "large files" they need to rise to 50:1 after 5 seconds, and 200:1 after another 10 seconds. Maybe leave it at 10:1 and 30:1 for files less than 10 minutes... heck scale the rise in rate with the size in file...

And my Lyra isn't processing the file either like this reviewed device is, I don't hear any clipped chatter.

Re:Hey, not all codecs .. (1)

delus10n0 (524126) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641198)

If it's CBR, yes, it's easier to just just to a jump to a certain time. But, if it's VBR, there should be a "XING" VBR header to give the codec some idea of where that time frame is. The codec jumps to that point, and then starts seeking frames to find that exact timecode. That can take up a little more time/processing power than CBR would.

Re:Hey, not all codecs .. (1)

Otter (3800) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641270)

I think this is less of a technical issue than a UI decision. Hitting fast-forward has to do *something*, and making it too fast or too slow would both be problems. The issue here is that they seem to have chosen a poor scheme.

Re:Hey, not all codecs .. (3, Insightful)

doofusclam (528746) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641139)

Sure, on an uncompressed mpeg4, you can just fseek() where you need to go and pick right up

What are you on about? What is an 'uncompressed' mpeg4 file? The real issue is the bitrate, is it variable or fixed per frame? Most decent codecs are the latter and you need to build an offset list to handle ffw correctly. Rewind is even harder that ffw, especially with b-frames.

Re:Hey, not all codecs .. (1)

torpor (458) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641203)

MPG4 is just a container format, the frames in that container can be 'compressed' with different codecs.. though you can have a 'raw-data mpeg4' file containing individual bitbuffers full of video, most mpeg4's depend on a codec to reduce the file size.

Re:Hey, not all codecs .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641168)

MP3 should have no problem with this; its about as simple as it gets.

Wow ! (2, Funny)

Digital Warfare (746982) | more than 9 years ago | (#10640994)

Might sell my iPod for one of these. Infact, I might start using Windows as well..

iPod Competitor (4, Insightful)

Ionizer7 (814098) | more than 9 years ago | (#10640999)

Why does every new hard disk mp3 player have to be labeled an iPod competitor? Some of these devices aren't even close to the iPod.

Re:iPod Competitor (1)

Bricklets (703061) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641186)

Why does every new hard disk mp3 player have to be labeled an iPod competitor? Some of these devices aren't even close to the iPod.

Umm, because they compete with the iPod? That was easy. Next! :-)

I think a more appropriate question is why are so many MP3 players labeled an iPod killer. My personal opinion is because Apple is doing too good a job moving iPods off the shelf. This is the same company that "ruined" their computer business, right? They haven't learned from their past mistakes, right? They only make cute little toys that are neato but have no mass consumer appeal, right?

Wrong. Oops. But that's not stopping "industry analysts" from seconding guess Apple anyway.

Re:iPod Competitor (1)

Ionizer7 (814098) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641225)

My point is, there is lots of competition out there in the electronic market, but you dont see everything labeled a competitor.

Re:iPod Competitor (1)

PriceIke (751512) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641300)

I think the point is that RCA wants their product to be an iPod killer. So does every other manufacturer with a competing product. It's like when Adobe kept coming out with new versions of PageMaker in their attempt to make a "Quark killer." That's how I read it, anyway ..

Re:iPod Competitor (2, Insightful)

parvenu74 (310712) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641209)

All the new hard drive mp3 player are called iPod competitors because Apple's iPod owns about 92% of that particular market. Ergo, they are the de facto incumbent against which all new entries will be compared and against which all new players must compete in order to make any sales.

(For my part, I am still trying to decide between the iRiver H140 or the 40GB iPod for my Christmas gift to me...)

Re:iPod Competitor (1)

buro9 (633210) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641227)

The same reason that every other OS aside from Windows is a Windows competitor... Apple holds the majority of the portable HDD audio market, if anyone else wants to gain significant market share then it's Apple that they need to beat.

It's no point making a device like this (incurring all of the R&D costs... though not it appears in this case) and then only wanting to take out a 2% market share holder.

OK, this just isnt fair.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641000)

I am submitting an article on the Archos Gmini 400 [] . This has gone too far. 'oooh the ipod can view photos!' jesus christ.

Re:OK, this just isnt fair.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641316)

The Archos is not compatible with industry-standard AAC files, does not synchronize with iTunes, and provides an inferior user experience.

Don't worry. iPod users needn't fret about the Archos Gmini 400.

Lyra: the * MPY * player. (not MP3) (5, Interesting)

denis-The-menace (471988) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641006)

I have a Lie-ra too. The 128MB version. It claims to play MP3s but you must convert them to MPY format using a MusicMatch plugin!! (BTW: it plays WMA files too but without a conversion to MPY )
I wonder if this Lyra play MP3s or MPYs?

Re:Lyra: the * MPY * player. (not MP3) (1)

YetAnotherName (168064) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641208)

OK, for those of us who live in virtual caves (self included), an MPY format file seems to be nothing more than a secure version of an MP3 format file that plays only in RCA/Lyra players.

More info [] .

Re:Lyra: the * MPY * player. (not MP3) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641258)

Really? I have the 128 and I drag and drop mp3's to it with out using their junky software or converting. You should check their website for a firmware update or something.

Re:Lyra: the * MPY * player. (not MP3) (2, Informative)

crownrai (713377) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641267)

I have the 64MB RCA Lyra. Same as the 128MB except for the obvious gimpyness of less storage space.

It can play MP3, WMA(plain or DRM), and MP3pro. I haven't use WMA's on it much but for MP3 or MP3pro playback you just hook it up to your machine and copy the files using your OS' filemanger. No extra software required. Havent even heard of this MPY format you speak of.

It does come with music manager software but that still on the CD. Perhaps it stores music on the device in this MPY format.

Nice feature about this player is the SD card slot. I'll be getting a 1GB when the SD cards drop even more then they have already.

Re:Lyra: the * MPY * player. (not MP3) (2, Insightful)

bonqers (682852) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641336)

RCA/Thompson has a firmware update that gets rid of the necessity to encrypt mp3s thru MusicMatch. It works great. My Lyra looks and acts just like a portable usb drive to windows now, and I don't have to use MusicMatch either. Check out Yahoo Groups RCA-Lyra-MP3, or go to

As Heather Duke would say... (1)

Fear the Clam (230933) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641013)

"Just another case of a geek trying to imitate the popular people and failing miserably."

Hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641021)

Why would I fret? I already own an iPod. It's not like the existence of a superior product to the iPod (which may already exist in some ways) will suddenly make my iPod disappear.

I'll check out the market in a year or two when my iPod is getting old and clunky and I feel like getting a new gadget. Until then, I'm not really thinking about mp3 players honestly...

Not the beta stage (2, Funny)

TheOste (413117) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641025)

In the software development world that would be the alpha stage. I can just see it now.

Engineer to Management.

We are trying to work on the fast forward function and we would like to do that before shipping.

Management to Engineer.

We must ship by this date, we don't care if the software is done correctly or not, just get us revenue.

Engineer to Management.

Ok, me must remove the FFW button from the machine.


No, leave it we have a great idea.

Management to end user and press.

"This is a new feature of the ffw button, we think that it should be a super slow function, for those times when you just have a little too much time on your hands."

Happens all the time

Again? Look, can we just take it as read (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641027)

That every portable hard disk based music player is inferior to an iPod until we hear otherwise? We get the message.

Re:Again? Look, can we just take it as read (3, Informative)

thisfred (643716) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641147)

In that case: have a look at the Rio Karma. 1. It's cheaper 2. It plays Ogg 3. It has a better screen resolution 4. It has cross platform support (a java client that uses an ethernet connection to download/upload music from/to it)

Re:Again? Look, can we just take it as read (1)

mmkkbb (816035) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641338)

1.) it's ugly
2.) no integration with iTMS
3.) too big to fit comfortably in a pocket
4.) doesn't play AAC

So? (3, Insightful)

iainl (136759) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641059)

So the forward-scan button gives you a 10x speed ffw. And? Why is this bad?

But then, I'm not getting my head round having single mp3 files that are 60 minutes long either, so that might explain it. I mean, there's Eno's Neroli, but I can't think of any others off the top of my head.

Ebooks (2, Informative)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641092)

I have a few that are MUCH longer then an hour..

And are not split up by chapter... so its one huge file..

Re:Ebooks (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641117)

Aaah, I see. Every eBook I've ever seen came broken down into couple-of-minute chapters, so this never occurred to me. How do you remember your place?

Re:Ebooks (1)

MattWeth (228379) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641196)

jeez - did you read the review article at all??
You remember your place by placing a bookmark (a feature which is very poorly implemented on the unit in question).

Re:So? (1)

savagedome (742194) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641095)

Complete Albums as single mp3 files. I use them a lot. Make a playlist of all albums and set them on shuffle. So you get to listen a complete album from start to end and also keep the 'guessing' mode which I like.

Re:So? (1)

Koyaanisqatsi (581196) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641124)

the article specificaly mentioned audiobooks and the lack of a decent "bookmark" function, so the concern is very valid indeed.

Re:So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641182)

Green Carnation, a Norwegian progressive rock band, released an album called "Light of Day, Day Of Darkness" which featured a song that lasted for 60 minutes exactly.

Err, perhaps because... (1)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641210)

... with a CD or even a vinyl LP you can skip to wherever you want in seconds or less. This player is supposed to be the next generation of music machines and yet it appears to be a lot more awkward to use in some ways than the technology its supposed to supercede! For me thats hardly a selling point.

Re:So? (1)

Alranor (472986) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641212)

Dance Music.

I've got several live sets which are 3 or 4 hours long single mp3s , and it's tricky to split them into single tracks because they're all mixed together.

Re:So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641303)

Actually, I've been listening to a lot of 1/2 and 1 hour MP3s recently: DJ mixes recorded off the radio (Radio 1 Breezeblock sessions, to be specific). The MP3 player I use on my Nokia 6600 also has issues with FFWD.


Slower than a cassette player? (3, Insightful)

suso (153703) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641061)

Most cassette players and VCRs can go from start to end of a tape in about 1-2 minutes. That's sad.

iPodian (2, Interesting)

LegendOfLink (574790) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641072)

It always strikes me as strange why a company would believe that simply jumping on the MP3 Player bandwagon, and not actually producing a superior product to the iPod, would yield better sales results than the iPod. Absolute insanity.

Re:iPodian (1, Insightful)

stoborrobots (577882) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641123)

... yield better sales results than the iPod.

Maybe that's *GASP* not the aim? as long as I make positive profit, I don't really care if I make more sales than the iPod.

Insanity is not taking advantage of a clean, healthy profit which requires minimal marketing because that's all been done by your competitors...

Re:iPodian (2, Insightful)

jxyama (821091) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641280)

i'd say it's pretty darn hard to have a "healthy" profit when your device has a smaller profit margin (components are just about the same for all HD mp3 players... but iPods are priced higher) and the bulk of the consumers is dying to get your competitors product that's already dominating the market.

IMHO, there are roughly two kinds of people buying off-iPod HD mp3 players: 1) "geeks" who value raw specs above all else and getting "money's worth" in that regard and 2) "parents" who's been asked to get an "iPod" but thought it wasn't so important to actually get an "iPod"

Re:iPodian (1)

distributed (714952) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641183)

maybe if you have heard/know of how the windows OS began its life... this wouldnt be too much of a surprise. ;)

FFWing a 60 minute file (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641080)

Going through a 60 minute file in 6 minutes is still a fast forward. Fast is just a very ambibious term.

I don't think that every slashdot topic with the words "iPod" in it deserve to be on the front page.

I also wouldn't call every single device that plays MP3s an iPod competitor. The next thing you know you'll be throwing up newsposts about IBM laptops not having a scroll wheel.

Erm? (2, Insightful)

grasshoppa (657393) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641091)

Gotta wonder how these things get missed at the beta stage."

PHB: Beta stage? What beta stage?

I love that headline (3, Insightful)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641099)

Apple Fans Needn't Fret

What is that saying about a group of people, that a competitor's product to Apple might cause you to "fret"? I guess its implying that Apple users don't like competition? But beyond that, why should competition cause anyone outside of Apple cause any stress for anyone that doesn't make a living selling Apple realted products? Its just wierd thats all. I understand that we can all get caught up in fandom every now and then, but geez louise give it a break.

Apple Culture is Anti-Competative... (0)

FatSean (18753) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641180)

...makes sense it would bleed over to the user base.

Reasons to fear (3, Interesting)

worksucks371 (796619) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641109)

I believe "apple fans" have a reason to fear iRiver [] and the Nomad Zen [] more then this.
since IMNSHO both of these give you far better bang for your buck, not to mention the iRiver has more features.

Just my two cents really.

Re:Reasons to fear (1)

Elithris (789957) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641240)

I agree, the iRiver has many more features than the iPod and IMHO looks better. On top of that, it's in the same price range if not cheaper. The Rio Karma has more options and is $100 less. The only reason the iRiver HD player isn't an iPod killer is, of course, because the iPod has brand recognition.

Re:Reasons to fear (1)

nativespeaker (797751) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641277)

The iRiver is also bulkier and has a less intuitive interface. The iPod has brand recognition for a reason.

Re:Reasons to fear (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641271)

The Nomad Zen is quite a bit larger than iPod, IIRC about 50% on volume, so it is a lot easier to make them cheaper. The iRiver H120 has an odd protruding nipple contraption as a control, and costs just as much as iPod. The PMP-120 is pretty nice looking and possibly worth consideration, but I haven't found a whole lot of useful reviews for it yet.

Re:Reasons to fear (1)

pedestrian crossing (802349) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641283)

Well for me, it -is- nice to be able to record on the iRiver, even though its interface isn't as nice as the iPod.

There's just so much zealotry all around, it's just another form of the old dick-measuring contest.

Apple fans^H^H^H^Hzealots, are a little smug for my liking, but hey, I guess my FOSS zealotry probably gets old for them too...

Re:Reasons to fear (1)

Chris_Rank (762224) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641294)

Reason to fear iRiver? Please, while the iRiver is geek friendly, mere mortals that have them (one sorotity chick I know comes to mind) hate them. This particular girl got one as a gift from her geek boyfriend instead of an iPod which is what she wanted. Not only does she not use it, she actually actively dislikes it. To some too many "features" means confusing. The beauty of the iPod is its consumer (lowest common denominator) friendly human interface. This is what any competitor has yet to beat.

seek to support ? (1)

distributed (714952) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641132)

Does the Lyra support the seek to xx:xx time function ?
Otherwise high speed ffw is not a very frequently used function... in winamp eg. i would directly click at the approx position from where i would like the play to continue instead of ffwding.
but as someone has already posted it depends on the codec also.


whats up with all this fear crap? (1)

Captain BooBoo (614996) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641138)

I really wonder sometimes why people make statements like this. I just got my free ipod from the deal and I love it. I am not fearfull of some other mp3 player any more that I am fearfull of of tin foil hats.

Slow Fast-forward? (1)

ConceptJunkie (24823) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641175)

Sounds like a big minus for fans of Spock's Beard, Yes, Klaus Schultze, Brian Eno... and the many other artists who have escaped the bounds of single-digit minute compositions.

If I could have mass storage on my PocketPC it would be the best music player out there... because it uses a Windows CE port of WinAmp (still beta unfortunately)... what could be easier to use? For now, I have to settle with a 1GB SD card, but that's not bad... and I can play games or read while I listen.

Beta? (0, Redundant)

nabil (585265) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641201)

They had a Beta stage?

4 dimensional (5, Funny)

pwells (202214) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641211)

According to the article (sorry):
The 154 gram unit comes in at 8.5-by-13.8-by-7.2 centimetres and 2.5cm thick

Should we fret about the 4th dimension instead?

But there already IS something better (0, Flamebait)

Skraut (545247) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641214)

iRiver's iHP series of hard disk players.

it plays every format you can throw at it, including .ogg and flac, as opposed to the ipod which converts everything to .aac. .aac is great, but that's like a graphic viewer that converts everything to jpeg before displaying it. .aac is a lossy format, so is .mp3 and many of the others. Convert from one lossy format to another and while it isn't as bad as an analog copy, you DO loose some quality.

That's the design "feature" if the ipod which really is a flaw. Yes the interface is great, so is the integration with itunes, but it's dependancy on only 1 format is not.

Re:But there already IS something better (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641321)

Wow, that was blindingly ignorant.

The iPod can play mp3 directly, it is not dependent on only one format (AAC).

Now maybe you're thinking of the stupid 20GB Sony Walkman, which forces you to convert everything to ATRAC3 before loading it on the device.

Re:But there already IS something better (1)

stretch_jc (243794) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641325)

the ipod which converts everything to .aac

Have you actually used an ipod, or are you simply repeating random crap that you've heard on /.

The ipod can play mp3s, aac, and apple lossless (if not more). Please know what you're talking about before you post random crap.

Re:But there already IS something better (1)

Arielholic (196983) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641332)

Erm? The iPod doesn't convert everything to .aac, if you throw a .mp3 at it, it will gladly swallow it. If you import a CD wit iTunes, you can set iTunes to convert it to .aac, but also to .mp3.

Re:But there already IS something better (2, Informative)

nolen (803875) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641342)

iPod does not convert everything to aac. It plays mp3, as well as several lossless formats (aif, wav, apple lossless) without converting anything at all. It does not play ogg or wma, true. But that does not make it dependent on 1 format.

Not a KILLER? (1)

mrn121 (673604) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641222)

RCA's Lyra 40GB iPod 'competitor.'

In other news, the phrase "ipod killer" has been replaced with a new foriegn phrase on slashdot: "ipod competitor."

Speaking of portable music players... (3, Insightful)

gumpish (682245) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641242)

It seems the Rio Karma [] hasn't had a feature bump since it's introduction last year. Sure, it's pricing is on par with the 20 GB iPod (and the Karma comes with a dock, featuring an ethernet port, not to mention native support for Ogg Vorbis and FLAC), but I think Rio can do even better. =)

I don't understand this. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641288)

When I type this link from outside the US I get Access Denied.
What's that all about????? keyboy []

More MP3 player support for macs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641295)

When I saw the headline, I figured this was going to be an article about how more MP3 players were going to start offering support for Mac computers.

For people who own only Macs, the iPod is pretty much the only choice for MP3 players, apart from MP3-playable CD players. Are any of Apple's competitors going to offer support for OS X?

Design (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641302)

What's with the vintage case design? Looks like my AIWA walkman knock-off from 1988. Bleah.

for the new visitors to slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10641322)

slashdot has been bought out by doubleclick.

welcome to

I for one welcome our new..... so on and so forth

What's the problem? (1)

IvanD (719006) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641326)

If you are keeping a 60min file to go over on 6 mins... and kill your battery doing so.. over and over. Wouldn't you better.. skip it? If you don't want to hear it... delete it!

Besides, how long does it take to your walk-man FFW a 30min cassette?

I thing the fact that you are not able to hear MP3s is more important.

I have the old version of RCA's 40 gig player... (2, Informative)

Jomboni (825754) | more than 9 years ago | (#10641329)

It's the Lyra RD2840. It's got it's faults but overall it's a great player for what I need it to do. Initially, it had lots of problems. You couldn't resume a track from where you left off if you turned the unit off and back on, the track would start over. If you had both mp3s and wma files on it, there was static when it switched between the 2 formats. Shuffle was buggy, etc... these were all fixed in a recent firmware upgrade though. FFW is slow on mine, but not as slow as the review says it is on the new model. Playback isn't gapless, but it's "pretty close." Battery life so far seems to be about 10 hours continuous play, 7-8 if I shuffle around, so that's not bad. It comes with an AC adapter, cigarette lighter adapter, carrying case, and the headphones are better than the typical stock headphones. The downside: For some reason, the line-out is a 1/16" jack instead of the usual 1/8" headphone sized. An adapter is included though. Also, it requires a 5.5v AC adapter, which I have had trouble locating online... so if you lose your adapter I'm not sure what you'd do. Occasionally, if you shuffle around to songs that aren't in order, the song will start about 1/2-1 second into the track. The one feature that sold me, over everything else, is that it's one of the few players that doens't require any special software. It's recognized as a standard external USB drive, you just copy files over to it like you would any normal drive (so you can also use it to store other files besides music). There IS a Windows system tray application that you use to "profile" the device, which scans all the id3 tags so that you can browse your songs by artist/genre/album/etc. But you don't need to use it, because the player has a profiling feature built in! It's just a little slower than using the windows app. In other words, this player is PERFECT for linux users. And, they're cheap. I got mine refurbished on ebay for only $160. At that price, for a 40 gig player that includes all the accessories and requires no software and runs effortlessly under Linux I don't mind the few faults it has!
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>