Android or separate DAP?
Apr 22, 2011 at 8:39 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 14

Hase

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I've finally made the switch to an Android device but can't seem to find a way to meet my music needs.  I ride a train to and from work everyday so I make frequent use of my DAP.  I like to be able to sync it once a week and replace all the music I've listened to with stuff I haven't for a while.  I achieved this easily in iTunes using smart playlists that pulled from "least recently played."
I've tried a number of Android solutions over the last few weeks but can't get anything to do both: smart playlists and bi-directional syncing of timestamps, rating, and counts.
 
If I can't do it on the phone, I'll survive but then I'll ask for a recommendation for a dedicated DAP, preferably one with a capacity greater than 200 gig capacity and decent audio.  (This could be the preferred option anyway to lighten the load on the phone's battery plus _yet_another_ full catalog backup.)
 
So, any comments or recommendations on either account?
 
Apr 22, 2011 at 9:14 AM Post #3 of 14

Hase

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I tried both.  WinAmp does not yet support DAP-to-computer syncing so songs I've played don't update on the computer and therefore don't fall off the smart playlists.
 
I don't recall what the shortcoming was with doubleTwist.  I'll look at it again.
 
EDIT:  doubleTwist does not sync back either. 
I don't like it but I'm close to making this work using a complicated stack of applications.  The last bit is getting the played-then-scrobbled songs to update play timestamps in iTunes. Anyone doing that?
(This is using four different applications and requires Windows, I don't like any of that but it's the best I can find so far.)
 
Apr 22, 2011 at 9:41 AM Post #4 of 14

Szadzik

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Battery life, battery life and battery life again. This is the biggest problem IMO when using your phone as a DAP. Having a separate DAP you do not have to worry about that.
 
Apr 23, 2011 at 2:06 AM Post #5 of 14

Ricardo Dawkins

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Get some spare batteries as I do with my phone.
 
 
 
Quote:
I've tried a number of Android solutions over the last few weeks but can't get anything to do both: smart playlists and bi-directional syncing of timestamps, rating, and counts.

There is nothing in Android that will get you all that. Anyway, check Music Player Pro and give it a try.
 
Apr 23, 2011 at 12:25 PM Post #6 of 14

Hase

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Quote:
There is nothing in Android that will get you all that. Anyway, check Music Player Pro and give it a try.


Okay, so if I give up on the smartplaylists, what can sync bi-directionally?  I rate as I listen then use those ratings elsewhere.
 
I do use PlayerPro and found that I like it more than anything else, it'd be nice to stick with that.
 
What about moving all my ratings and playcounts into the ID3 tag, would that advance my mission?
 
 
Apr 23, 2011 at 1:06 PM Post #7 of 14

High_Q

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For me its the portability of carrying one item for all purposes, but in this world electronics are run by batteries, and the problem has already been stated.  I think phone is a bad idea as it attract RFI to its source causing noise if the radio is on(I would put any phone in airplane mode to enjoy music).  Also, it depends on what type of android device you have, its not the software effecting the SQ, its the audio hardware inside.  If you have a Samsung or a Sony hardware device(I can automatically say it will sound decent, but it is always possible it may have poor hardware) you could have a winner as a Android device that would output decent sound since Sony and Samsung are both are companies that specialize in designing DAPs.  I'm curious how Samsung Galaxy S sounds.  
 
Apr 24, 2011 at 7:26 PM Post #8 of 14

Hase

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I agree, but this particular rig is more for convenience than quality.  Quality I do at home or with another portable setup (that I am reminded I need to add to my sig).
 
So, still looking for the bi-directional syncing solution...
 
Apr 25, 2011 at 11:10 PM Post #9 of 14

Icy56

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For me its the portability of carrying one item for all purposes, but in this world electronics are run by batteries, and the problem has already been stated.  I think phone is a bad idea as it attract RFI to its source causing noise if the radio is on(I would put any phone in airplane mode to enjoy music).  Also, it depends on what type of android device you have, its not the software effecting the SQ, its the audio hardware inside.  If you have a Samsung or a Sony hardware device(I can automatically say it will sound decent, but it is always possible it may have poor hardware) you could have a winner as a Android device that would output decent sound since Sony and Samsung are both are companies that specialize in designing DAPs.  I'm curious how Samsung Galaxy S sounds.  


The Galaxy s with voodoo sound is AMAZING. I used to have an ipod touch but once I got my galaxy s 4g and added voodoo sound I immediately sold my ipod. The blows it away in every way but I cant really explain what I am hearing, I can just tell it sounds better. Here is a review from a more experienced head-fier who is running the phone completely stock:

i comprared now: Samsung galaxy S vs. Cowon S9 vs. Nexus One
all paired with Earsonics SM3 ..
 
best SQ and overall exprience i got with the samsung galaxy s:
+ better instrument separation
+ better bass, the bass feel more rounder and deeper
+ realy smooth mids and trables
+ overall sq is mutch more enjoybale and live than the other two
+ no hiss! with s9 and nexus i can hear a hiss
+ excellent balance, with the s9 and nexus the left piece feel a little bit stronger
 
i must say the whole experience really convinced me to buy a better source than the Cowon S9 ..
 
if i rate the 3 by SQ this will be my choice:
1. Samsung galaxy S
2. Cowon S9
3. Nexus One


 
May 2, 2011 at 5:58 PM Post #10 of 14

cresny

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Another thing to consider is that with Android you can use something like Subsonic (self-hosted), Amazon Cloud or Ubuntu One (cloud service), and never have to worry about sync again. I imagine these are covered elsewhere here, but I host Subsonic on an "always-on" fanless ITX board that I house in a shoebox, which consumes about 27 watts continuously. If you don't want to mess with something like that the hosted services are very reasonable, even free for 5 gigs on amazon, and you don't have to worry about backup. I used to spend hours dealing with syncing everytime I traveled, but that is now a thing of the past as my entire terrabyte collection is available pretty much anywhere, and I just "save to phone" the stuff I want to listen to before boarding a plane, etc. Also you can add me to the growing number of Samsung Galaxy S/Voodoo Sound converts; I've never heard anything better (anyone want a Rio Karma?) . In short, a resounding vote for Android/Galaxy S. 
 
 
 
May 3, 2011 at 10:22 AM Post #11 of 14

Hase

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Subsonic sounds interesting.  God knows I have enough little Alix boxes around I could pop one up tonight.  I see that it can accept ratings, but does it also support tracking playcounts and have anything similar to a smart playlist (I still want to be able to start a somewhat random playlist or songs I've not heard in a while)?
 
And what does it use as a client on the phone (browser or app)?
 
May 3, 2011 at 11:42 AM Post #12 of 14

cresny

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Subsonic has both random play and playlists, but I don't know about "smart" playlists. However, the server is open-source and it's written in java, so there are lots of folks out there who could contribute that feature. 
 
On Android, the client is written by Sindre Mehus, the Subsonic creator. There are also a couple of iphone clients. The client app supports most of the web-app features. One thing that's great is the voice search (especially in the car). 
 
About the server, I've used many media managers, and this one is the simplest for me. It's a good combination of file system + tags, and gets album art from google image search. It makes managing a large collection a pleasure, just drop in a folder. The next thing is setting up RAID5 storage, then I think I'm set.
 
-Cliff
 
May 3, 2011 at 2:38 PM Post #13 of 14

Hase

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Well well, this might work for me.  I'll follow up with my results after playing with it.
 
May 6, 2011 at 8:39 AM Post #14 of 14

Hase

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Well, Subsonic is working very well but it still doesn't add either of the features I'm looking for.  It diminishes my desire for the smart playlists but I use ratings constantly and need that function.  Currently, it appears to only support rating albums.  I'll join the forum, maybe I can find some time to help develop some of those functions...
 

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