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PONO - Neil Youngs portable hi-res music player

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by currawong, Sep 28, 2012.
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  1. ruthieandjohn
    Thanks...ordered a copy. It will go well with my Schiit Happened by the founders of Schiit, Piloting Palm, and The Perfect Thing, about the development of the iPod.
    Left Channel likes this.
  2. barondla
    Hi res doesn't guarantee excellent sound. It guarantees we hear more of what the artist recorded - good or bad. With reduced interference.

    i have multiple PonoPlayers to avoid ever being without one.
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
    L8MDL and oneway23 like this.
  3. oneway23
    Do you happen to know if/where it's possible to still purchase one? Thanks
    NotKunvinced likes this.
  4. L8MDL
    Ebay almost always has at least one for sale.
    oneway23 likes this.
  5. ruthieandjohn
    I purchased mine off of eBay about a month ago and just love it. My challenge was that most of the ones on eBay at the time were special editions, rather than the original yellow one. I held out for the original and glad that I did.

    The only frustration is “blue-light-itis.” The Pono has a blue light that is supposed to come on with genuine high res recordings (approved by Young, I suspect) and available from the music service that was to accompany Pono. However, the only song that works for was the one Neal Young song that came with the Pono. Regardless of format or bit rate, no external file I’ve found turn that light on.

    I would (foolishly) pay a pretty penny for some more blue light music originating from the Pono library. Anyone have some?
  6. oneway23
    John, I wouldn't worry about it. That light was reverse engineered a long time ago, and, if I recall, it doesn't indicate anything.
    There was merely something included within the data of files purchased in the store which popped the light.
  7. Left Channel
    The blue light is activated by a tag. All it really means is that the track was purchased from Pono, though their intent was to indicate that they'd verified it as true Hi-Res FLAC. But if you really want it, someone has written a free utility to pop it in there for you: https://github.com/eehmke/flactag

    An interesting tidbit from Neil Young's new book is that Bob Stuart of MQA originally proposed this, when the Pono folks were discussing working with him (which in the end never happened). As we now know, MQA eventually implemented colored lights to indicate various levels of "unfolding" and copyright owner authorization.

    That story alone is enough to make me want to forget about all about the Pono blue light.
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
    oneway23 likes this.
  8. maira
    I have just one and i love it. Maybe ill buy a second one as i havent found a DAP that i like more tonaly.
  9. roadrat
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
    L8MDL likes this.
  10. doctorjazz
    I have 2, wasn't using them much (had a Pioneer xdp 300 that was more convenient in many ways, memory, folder search), but it bit the dust and I'm enjoying then again.
    And, as I recall, the light only lit for hi rez files bought from the old Pono store.
    (Don't understand not having a folder search option on the Pono, it's very handy sometimes)
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
  11. ruthieandjohn
    @doctorjazz or any other Ponophile, willing to sell any hi-res tunes acquired from the now-defunct Pono store (and that turn on the blue light)? PM me if so. Thanks!
  12. L8MDL
    That may violate copywrite laws - in general, single use licenses cannot be transferred. I'd have to see Omnifone's license info. Support your local musicians!

    Some dated, but relevant, info:
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
  13. ruthieandjohn
    Thanks for the caution..

    I'd be most happy to purchase such Pono songs from whomever holds the license rights at this moment, given the demise of the Pono store. Who has such license? Neal Young? Are there any such licensed distributors, with the demise of the Pono store? If not, then what are the options?

    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
  14. L8MDL
    No way to do that. As I understand it, Apple bought out the company that sold downloads and shut them down. That was the last strike for Pono. If you're hung up on the blue light, use the method described earlier in this thread to alter the files and you can have ALL your songs light up. Me? I feel it just wastes battery.
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
  15. roadrat
    Apple.... really???
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