12-11-2009 02:26 AM
I have recenlty bought the clip+ 8 gb model with the intention of holding ~24 GB of music on it (~64kbps Vorbis Ogg). Having filled both the internal 8GB and the 16GB card I have noticed that the clip + can only seem to see about 4GB worth of data on the SD card. When connected into my computer I can see the full file system without problem - through both a USB card reader and the Clip + player itself.
When the card was inserted it took the usual long time to traverse the file system and build the inernal database etc.
Is there some firmeware related known problems that restrict the Clip + to only addressing 4GB of an SD card or is it likely to be a limimtation to the number of files it can handle. I have arranged music in Letter/ Artist / Album / Song format so I don't think the problem is the player stating the directories.
The clip itself in "info" view shows the correct size of the SD card and reports, correctly, the remaining space.
I have made sure there is enough room to store the internal tag database but this problem is at the file system levelm as well as library level. The "folder" view (filesystem) doesn't show any of my folders past around the 4GB mark nor do the Tags of such files get read when the player is updating it's media library.
I have had a look on the SanDisk site and cannot see anything to suggest a 16GB card would be no good. If this is the case then I'll be very dissapointed indeed as it was my intention to get a 32GB Sandisk Micro SD card when they become available to raise the players capacity to 40GB.
I can't see if being a fault with the card as I have used it in a phone which could address all the files, the files are all there via card reader and player when connected to the computer, the card is SanDisk branded etc.
Any help appreciated.
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12-11-2009 04:28 AM
Only 64kbit/s for the OGGs?
So that means you're trying to get (I'd guess) something like 10,000 files onto your Clip+?
I think the problem might be the *number of files* rather than the *amount of data*.
I'm guessing that you do see the files when you open the device via your PC, and just not when you open via the Clip+ menus, yes?
I forget what it is, but my understanding is that the Clip+ can only menu up to several thousand or so files.
12-11-2009 06:20 AM
Yes, 64 kbps. This is about equal to the quality of 128kbps mp3 thus very acceptible (although ogg is VBR so the rate varies from 32 - 98 in these files however average tends to be 64). I am running tests now but I am surprised it there is a file number limitation in the "folder" view which is simply opening file system directories.
There were 8511 files in total, but not all in one directory. They were in /MUSIC/(first letter of artist)/Artist/Album/Track hence no folder had more than about 30 files / directories in them at most.
I am running some tests now to try and ascertain what is causing the problem.
I'd have expected SanDisk to explain any limitations of the player on their product description if there are any, i.e. max SD card, max number of files etc.
Yes, as I mentioned in my original post. The files are present on the file system when mounted on a computer. They are present when mounted either through a USB card reader or by the SD slot in the Clip +. Only the first 4GB worth of files were visible from the file system view on the player. This only applied to the SD card. The full 8GB of files can be seen in either tag or folder view on the 8GB of internal memory.
It's pretty obvious if you are selling a small capacity flash player that people will use small ogg's as opposed to larger MP3 files so as to get the maximum amount of music on the player so I'd be quite upset at SanDisk if this problem turns out to be with the actual firmware.
12-11-2009 06:51 AM - edited 12-11-2009 06:52 AM
Not necessarily. A sizable portion of the public wouldn't know what an ogg was if it bit them on the foot.
The sound quality of these Sansas has led many people on the opposite end of the spectrum to use FLAC or Q10 ogg files on theirs, in search of the "ultimate" sound. These people would not consider 128kbps mp3, or 64kbps ogg or wma, to be acceptable at all. I couldn't fit my entire 42GB library on an 8GB+16GB Clip+ or Fuze, and that is only 5,594 tracks, with an average bitrate of 224kbps.
When producing a device such as this, a company has to try to take into account what different users will want from it, and for the most part, Sansa has done a pretty good job, IMO.
Message Edited by Marvin_Martian on 12-11-2009 09:52 AM
Clip Zip 4GB+16GB, e280, Fuze+ 16GB <--All rockboxed. Cowon D2+ 16GB+32GB, Sony NWZ S639
Nexus 7 32GB, Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus 16GB, LG Optimus G Pro 32GB+32GB
12-11-2009 07:15 AM
Erm... not really a good job.
If they produce and market an mp3 player that says it is 8GB + SD expandable and plays oggs - and someone buys it expecting to be able to fill it with oggs but 12 GB of this data is missing - the player is far from finished and has been misadvertised / is in need of an urgent firmware update.
If it is being marketted it should function as marketted (i.e. it should be thoroughly tested - which if this problem turns out to be definitely firmware related if most certainly hasn't been).
Anyway, such anecdotes are not relevent to the problem as why the player doesn't seem to be capable of handling the size / files on the card.
In order to try to work out whats going on I have replaced the .ogg files (all 8000+ of them) with empty files with the same names in an attempt to have an almost empty cardwith same number of directories and files in the same structure. The player has been in "Refreshing Your Media" state for well over 2 hours now. I suspect this points to a file number issue however I'll update the post with my finding - I might format the player to remove the residual meta info DB and start a fresh.
I'll then try again with high number of ogg's with / without tags
mp3's 64kbs with / without tags
mp3's 320 kbs with / without tags
It's sad really as otherwise this is the perfect player for size, battery, replay gain, gapless playback etc. I'd seen a few reviews where people were looking forward to getting 32GB SD cards and filling those with music.
I think that they might be disappointed also.
Again, I'll update with my findings.
12-11-2009 07:33 AM
fwiw, my guess is that OGG (and especically at just 64kbit/s) is fairly niche, even among Clip+ users -- furthermore, I'm at the opposite end, as I try to load FLACs when I can (which I also assume to be fairly niche).
That said, if you are indeed hitting a max file limit, it also seems to me the Clip+ should simply permit more files. My guess is that they use 128bit/s as the baseline. This will become a bigger problem if/when 32GB microsdhc cards become available.
Question: if you browse via the folder view, does that show the missing stuff? I'm not quite sure if the folder view would be limited by the same constraint, so it's at least worth a try...
12-11-2009 07:40 AM
24 GB of songs at 64 kbps is probably around 12,000 songs. It makes sense that you can only see around half of them on the player. The player has a limit of around 8,000 songs, but the limit is also also further constrained by having nested folders, long folder names, and long file names or tags contents.The player has a very limited amount of memory to hold the path names and tags in the database, so if you keep the file and folder names small, and also choose small tags, you might get to the 8,000 or so song limit. With longer path names though and a few levels of folder nesting, the limit might be somewhere in the 5,000 to 6,000 song range which seems to be what you are experiencing. My advice to you is to use a higher bitrate(perhaps 96 kbps or 128 kbps?), and try shortening the folder names and level of nesting, and perhaps also shorten the tags and filenames.
12-11-2009 07:44 AM
Yes, I mentioned this in my original post. Viewing the "folder" view, i.e. the FAT file system from within the navigation of the player (when the player is not connected to a computer) only showed 6 directories. There should have been 12 more but there were simply missing from the menu. I have now just had to perform a 15 second reset on the player to get it to come back on after attempting to reconnect it to the computer before it had finished it's "refreshing your media" scan.
I don't think the fact that Ogg is not a popular format has anything to do with it. It appears so far that the same thing would have occured if the files were mp3 at a low bit rate.. Once again, this is irrelevant. If you sell an item advertised as being capable of playing a music format (typically in the range of 64 kbps) then it should be tested prior to release. Again, it is advertised as playing WMA files which most poeple using a small device encode to be around 96 kbps - thus not that different number of files / storage presentedby myself in ogg
Again, I'll try not to start completely blaming SanDisk just yet - I'll keep fiddling with various combinations. I was wondering if there was any one out there who has a 16GB SD card and fancied seeing if they could replicate the problem.
Does anyone actually employed by SanDisk read this forum? Is the firmware source code (assuming it's C) available to read at all from anyone / where? I know that's asking a lot but the truth would be in the code :-)
12-11-2009 07:52 AM
Yes, if this is the case then are we looking at a finite size of the meta DB the player holds. i.e. is the DB free to expand into any available storage on the internal flash or is it limited to a set amount. I'll try the SD card again with nothing on the internal memory.
However, firstly, if there are limits then they should be made clear on the SanDisk site. It isn't unthinkable that somoene would want 8000 - 8500 songs on the device if they fit. Secondly it's poor programming if the "folder" aka file system view prevents you from seeing whats on the file system and instead shows you the paths stored in the meta DB and no the reality of the filesystem! Is this what really happens. It would explain the problems being seen.
It seems that the most likely solution then is to remove the tags. Hopefully this would allow for enough space in the meta DB for the paths and filenames of all the files but this does mean that a future 32GB expansion is most likely going to require a firmware update in order to be useful for most people.
Thanks for the help on this one.
12-11-2009 08:20 AM
Removing the tags might not be the best thing to do. If I were in your place I would first try reducing the folder names, perhaps even to a single charachter or two, and of having a lower level of folder nesting. Even if you get rid of the tags and simplify pathnames you might not be able to have much over 8,000 songs visible(the song limit isn't exactly 8,000). The general assumption is that for music people will use at least 128 kbps. A few years ago 64 kbps wma was also considered a standard, however now that high quality mp3 players generally have at least 4 GB of storage, the standard is to expect songs to be at least 128 kbps.