This is a statement written by James, translated by me, and represents both our thoughts on the matter.
Dear members of Head-Fi,
Firstly, thank you all for your suggestions and help. As everyone knows, FiiO became a success not because we were smarter or stronger than others, but because we encourage and continue listening to user feedback, and even invite everyone to join in designing and creating our new products--such as the X1, our new entry level high-res lossless music player which has just got on our drawing board. That drawing board is right here with you: http://www.head-fi.org/t/691332/fiio-x1-the-most-portable-and-affordable-high-resolution-dap-from-fiio
Our posting history shows that communicating with, being open with and trusting in our customers has always been the basic tenets of our presence at head-fi.
Regarding the X3's firmware and any suggestions for improvement, we welcome everyone's feedback. In fact we have long since opened a thread just for this purpose. I maintain this thread's OP and am able to summarize everyone's ideas and bug reports and report on our plans and actions in reply to them.
Many problems (most not listed in the OP) have already been fixed and we will continue fixing remaining issues and improving the X3 based on suggestions.
There is more good news: the X1, X3 and X5 will share the same development platform. Thus, not only will the fruits of X3's development be employed on the X5 and X1, the reverse also applies: we need not abandon the X3 to work on the X5 firmware. Instead, improvements researched for the X5 and subsequently the X1 can, to a great extent, be carried over to the X3. Thus problems can be solved on all our players, old and new, and their performance will continue to improve.
Finally, we would like to share our prioritization process for addressing bugs, issues and feature requests--you understand that such prioritization is always necessary given limited engineering resources:
1.Stability issues are the most urgently addressed; then come bugs; finally, we come to optimizations and new features.
2.Also, to increase the number of issues addressed in a given time, we place easy-to-fix issues ahead of hard-to-fix issues.
3.We also prioritize issues according to the number of users affected by the issue. Naturally, issues that affect the majority of users come first.
(Note: at this point, some of you may wonder: why was the major new feature, USB decoding, added in firmware 2.05 ahead of other bug fixes? The answer: a separate research team had been working on this feature since before the X3 was ever released--so there was a lot of research manpower tied to the completion of this feature, manpower that could not otherwise effectively work on other bugfixes at any rate.)
The upshot of the above 3 prioritization rules is, we have decided that some issues are more important than the mp3 decoding issue, among which some examples are:
* Ogg Vorbis decoding. Now here's a real bug!
* The request for multi-layer category navigation. We decided that being able to find the right song to play at all was more important than the last few % of audio quality listening to the wrong song...
We believe that with enough work, X3's mp3 decoding can be improved in the future. (For that matter, it's been 20 years since the mp3 standard was first finalized and the brave developers at LAME are still working on improving encoding...) But please understand that this is not only difficult, but also somewhat beside the point, as no amount of work on our part can make mp3s an audio format to rival lossless formats in quality--which is where we spent the majority of our pre-release research effort, to be able to play back as many different lossless formats as possible. Nevertheless, we will continue to strive to improve the decoding quality and hopefully someday make everyone happy
Finally, we hope our supporters would understand and support us, so that we may spend less time on solving issues regarding public relations issues regarding firmware issues yet to be solved and more time on actually solving said firmware issues
and Joseph Yeung,
Translator and Customer Service Officer
FiiO Electronics Technology Co. Ltd.
Translator's note: throughout these last few days, James has been giving me flack for promising the moon when it comes to firmware updates like the mp3 decoding update and the multi-level category sorting. My understanding--as confirmed here--is that the engineering team is actually working on these issues. However, he doesn't want to promise an update and have his development team run into an unforseen dead end and disappoint his customers. So I suspect he'll want me to stress here that we're not promising a definite update to the mp3 decoding, only that we are definitely working on it. He's just that kind of upstanding guy Edited by Joe Bloggs - 11/23/13 at 8:33am