Sansa Clip Firmware Update

@gwk1967 wrote:
What does that mean, exactly? Are you abandoning work on fixing the pitch bug on ALL devices now?

Well, look at his exact words:

"For those who can detect sound differenceswith [sic] their naked ears during actual use and not via frequency analysis, ourproducts [sic] may not be the best choice for them."

Note that he used the plural of “product” rather than say “Clip” – I think it would take a major “whistling past the graveyard” effort to see this in any way other than as it reads.

When a company talls me to avoid their products – without specifying any particular model – if I care about quality, what grade of naive would I need to be to not take them at their word?

I realize the paradox here – we DID take them at their word when they said that the fix was there, ready to be dropped into the next firmware release, so we should just be patient.  But, I think it’s just an “apparent paradox” – I think we’re OK if we take them at their word when they are delivering BAD news.  It only seems to be when they are making “campaign promises” that we should not get our hopes up.  (I think of it in those terms, having been trained by the best politicians in the land not to believe the promises they mke when trying to gain my support.)

Message Edited by PickMorel on 09-24-2009 05:51 AM

Since this issue can be fixed by resampling your _ files _ to 48kHz, it’s probably also possible to implement a fixed-point software resampler in the player. This would trade-off battery time and a decrease in SNR for correct sampling of the audio.

@kohlrabi wrote:
Since this issue can be fixed by resampling your _ files _ to 48kHz, it’s probably also possible to implement a fixed-point software resampler in the player. This would trade-off battery time and a decrease in SNR for correct sampling of the audio.

anytime u make the processor work harder,  u usually have to bump up the clock … and when u bump up the clock… u end up with less battery…      not saying i know for sure but the battery test vs bitrate/encoders do show dramatic differences in battery live…    when they clock up the cpu. 

What bothers me after reading everything about the pitch issue, is at one time  Sansa Engineers looked at the issue and had reduced the pitch deviation to less than a few cents.    That tells me it is fixable.   And why did it never get released?  Is it because Sansa Engineering and Management can’t get their facts straight?   Were the right people in that meeting ?   The ones who worked on it before or were those engineers part of the group that got displaced?   I really think Sansa took the easy way out on this, and I hope customers don’t allow that to happen.    If there was a fix what happened to it ?    Sansafix gave detailed information about how much of an improvement they could accomplish, I really dough he would have given this detailed info if they had not done the work.  

I hope Sansa reconsiders their decision on this.  It’s making the management there look uninformed and not in touch with the history of the issue and the work that was already done.   Either that or they need to provide the exact details of the engineering trade offs.   It wouldn’t be the first time management made an uninformed decision in hopes that the issue would just disappear and underestimate how loud thier customers can be.   If you had the fix before what happened to it?  Why Sansa?

Please bang the drums till we get more details from Sansa regarding this issue.  And don’t let them take the easy way out.  If Sansa wants to make a second rate product they are making the right decisions about this issue.  Please Sansa don’t take the easy way out when you already had a fix for this.

Reference:  http://forums.sandisk.com/sansa/board/message?board.id=sansafuse&message.id=18197

Sansafix wrote:

 

All,

Good news, We have reduced the pitch error by one order of magnitude with little to no effect on battery life (<3%).

The optimization will be included in the next firmware release due out this quarter.

We have optimized for 44Khz and the pitch error is < 0.14%

For all other samples rates its <0.18%

Message Edited by sansafix on 02-19-2009 08:37 AM
 

Message Edited by niko_sama on 09-24-2009 09:41 AM

Message Edited by niko_sama on 09-24-2009 09:47 AM

This is all so odd–given the above, why wasn’t the fix made?  Perhaps a concern over the lower battery duration, from a marketing perspective?

Having said that, it is unclear to me that SanDisk will reverse itself–its various committees already convened and made a determination, presumably with, among other things, the above information in hand.   The company would need to be given a reason and a motivation to go the other way.

@miikerman wrote:

This is all so odd–given the above, why wasn’t the fix made?  Perhaps a concern over the lower battery duration, from a marketing perspective?

 

Having said that, it is unclear to me that SanDisk will reverse itself–its various committees already convened and made a determination, presumably with, among other things, the above information in hand.   The company would need to be given a reason and a motivation to go the other way.

i dough thats true.    They probably didn’t have the right people in the meeting or they weren’t asking the right questions.     Maybe they were too busy thinking about lunch or golf on friday.       If the above is copyied to the right level,   vp engineering directors etc.   maybe the right questions will be asked. and answered.

committees?  lol wtf…  its was probably one engineering director or manager asking a couple engineers and maybe those engineers present didn’t have the answers.    Or very possible it was just a managers response in email to his boss saying the issue was not important and they were maxed out on on other issues / work load.  

If Sansafix said there was no noticable effect on battery life, i believe what he said.  

If i was the director I would find out what happened to the fix.   And it would get done.    It would be nice to copy the VP’s and Directors some of the history on this issue…  its possible we know more about it than they do.

@miikerman wrote:

This is all so odd–given the above, why wasn’t the fix made?  Perhaps a concern over the lower battery duration, from a marketing perspective?

 

 

Could be the person(s) that wrote the fix got laid off.

 As far as being a “value” brand, they do have to pick what things they invest in.  But I can’t help notice that of the other players people tested for comparison, none came anywhere near the error displayed by Clip and Fuze.  Do they really want the reputation of being “worst on the market by a long shot” wrt pitch?  

I’m curious to know if ANY other player at any price point has equivalent or greater error.  I don’t know what other brand uses AMS chips or if that’s a key factor.

Has anyone tested Fuze or Clip with Rockbox for this?  

 Speaking of Rockbox, a new release just came out with enhancements to pitch correction, and a tuner plugin that displays the note and cents error of the note coming in the microphone.  

 

 

@niko_sama wrote:

 

Please Sansa don’t take the easy way out when you already had a fix for this.

How meaningful is it to imply that a company is taking the “easy way out”?  Companies take the profitable way out.  That’s what they do.  That’s their meaning for existance.  Evidently, SanDisk decided that it would be more profitable to them to not release the pitch fix. 

Now some people are falling on the side of “gee I really want it but I’m not going to get it, that’s too bad” while others seem to be implying that SanDisk has misled people through statements that imply that the audio quality of the Clip is better than it actually is.

To the former, I’d say that that’s capitalism, and it’s a bummer that things have turned out this way for you … maybe you can sell your Clip on eBay and get one of those cheaper MP3 players with better audio quality.

To the latter, I’d say go ahead and make your case, but … do you really have to make it here?  If you’re thinking about some kind of legal action or whatever … is a SanDisk-maintained user forum really the best place to do it?

Its very possible it was a uninformed and understimated decision.   YES    the easy way out is post a statement that doesn’t match the history about the issue.    Why on earth would you say due to Engineering trade offs.   When 7 months earlier a product engineer stated its fixible with little effect on battery life.    It doesn’t add up.   Someone made the wrong decision.   plain and simple.

lol.   Yes I think this forum is the best place for it to appear.    I’d like a clear description why they didn’t fix it when they already had done the work.  It defies logic.

This forum is also a feedback into Sansa, and I have every intention to voice what i think is important.   as far as you questioning me if this was nessasary,  its non of ur business what i do.     LOL

@promisedplanet wrote:

 

To the latter, I’d say go ahead and make your case, but … do you really have to make it here?  If you’re thinking about some kind of legal action or whatever … is a SanDisk-maintained user forum really the best place to do it?

I’m not sure what kind of disinformation you are trying to start…    but whatever weed you are smoking to come up with this statement , i want some.     this made no sence to what i posted.  Where on gods green earth did you come up with this crap?

This stops here. This is not the place for arguments or personal attacks.

 

Forum Admin

slotmonsta 

Message Edited by slotmonsta on 09-24-2009 10:10 AM

@niko_sama wrote:


@promisedplanet wrote:

 

To the latter, I’d say go ahead and make your case, but … do you really have to make it here?  If you’re thinking about some kind of legal action or whatever … is a SanDisk-maintained user forum really the best place to do it?


I’m not sure what kind of disinformation you are trying to start…    but whatever weed you are smoking to come up with this statement , i want some.     this made no sence to what i posted.  Where on gods green earth did you come up with this crap?

 

This stops here. This is not the place for arguments or personal attacks.

 

Forum Admin

slotmonsta 

Message Edited by slotmonsta on 09-24-2009 10:10 AM

No attack was created with my statements.    Him infereing i was building a case and talking about something legal and no basis in my post and I still don’t understand how he made that up from my post.    But since I have your attention.   Would you take back the question that begs to be answered… 

Why did they shelf the work that had already ben done.    They have the fix…   They did tests on the fix.  They had quantifiable numbers regarding the fix.   7 months ago.     What happened?   I believe Sansa dropped the ball on this one and i can’t understand the logic.     You had the fix…   Why not take care of your customers, and improve your product.

Thanks, niko_sama, for keeping things on point and pointing to the issues. 

@miikerman wrote:
Thanks, niko_sama, for keeping things on point and pointing to the issues. 

:slight_smile: smiles  I’m good :)   I know its the hard question to ask our friends at Sansa,   And I know the people from Sansa that monitor this forum can only do so much,    But they are the ones who can get us the correct info.  I hope they don’t feel picked on.    We depend on them and appreciate their efforts.

Slotmonsta,  SansaFix,  uSansa    we all love you :stuck_out_tongue:

Yeah, we shouldn’t shoot the messenger, this ain’t Sparta.

niko_sama wrote: 

 

Why did they shelf the work that had already ben done.    They have the fix…   They did tests on the fix.  They had quantifiable numbers regarding the fix.   7 months ago.     What happened?   I believe Sansa dropped the ball on this one and i can’t understand the logic.     You had the fix…   Why not take care of your customers, and improve your product.

The improvement for this issue was never actually coded into the firmware. There was a potential improvement identified however this actually never made it in to the code. There is no elusive firmware that is sitting on the shelf. 

FYI, sansafix is no longer working with SanDisk. (If you will notice the VIP status was removed from his account and he has not posted lately) Some comments that were made, although well intended, may not have actually made it in to production.    

        Forum Admin

         slotmonsta 

Message Edited by slotmonsta on 09-24-2009 04:12 PM

just a note for you slotmonsta, statements like that do not make sadisk/sansa look any better, infact they tent to make most people even less happy with the company and believe that there probably was/is a fix that your just not giving them.

I do believe that it never made it into any kind of finished firmware code state, most likely because applying it would force sansa to change the specs of the clip to show even shorter batt life, smart move, since most people I know would prefer the pitch be a little off(that they dont/cant notice) in trade for the batt lasting longer.

My advice, make a post explaining exactly why the fix isnt going to be applied, be HONEST, people may not like the reasons BUT they will applicate HONESTY and forthrightness, where they do not appricate vauge reasons/excuses.

@azuresky wrote:

I do believe that it never made it into any kind of finished firmware code state, most likely because applying it would force sansa to change the specs of the clip to show even shorter batt life, smart move, since most people I know would prefer the pitch be a little off(that they dont/cant notice) in trade for the batt lasting longer.

What was the estimated decrease in battery life for the pitch fix?  I thought it was 3%.  In which case SanDisk would’ve had to change the published battery life of the Clip from “up to 15 hours of playtime” to “up to 14 and a half hours of playtime”.  I’m not sure how many people this would have driven off.  My guess is it was some other reason. 

While we all have a full attention to this thread now, how about releasing a firmware with “Folder” support? Shouldn’t be that difficult? No trade-offs? AFAIK this functionality was requested by many on this forum and elsewhere… and it was already implemented in the firmware updates for other Sandisk products. Show us, SanDisk, that you still listen to your loyal customers and didn’t drop us dead in the water.

-albertr

@slotmonsta wrote:


niko_sama wrote: 

 

Why did they shelf the work that had already ben done.    They have the fix…   They did tests on the fix.  They had quantifiable numbers regarding the fix.   7 months ago.     What happened?   I believe Sansa dropped the ball on this one and i can’t understand the logic.     You had the fix…   Why not take care of your customers, and improve your product.


The improvement for this issue was never actually coded into the firmware. There was a potential improvement identified however this actually never made it in to the code. There is no elusive firmware that is sitting on the shelf. 

FYI, sansafix is no longer working with SanDisk. (If you will notice the VIP status was removed from his account and he has not posted lately) Some comments that were made, although well intended, may not have actually made it in to production.    

        Forum Admin

         slotmonsta 

Message Edited by slotmonsta on 09-24-2009 04:12 PM

slotmonsta–

Thank you for the follow-up information, as well as communicating the company’s decision earlier this week to begin with.  I think you can understand some of the confusion here, given the earlier understandings of the status of the development of a pitch fix, based on prior SanDisk postings here.

While I wish and would have preferred that SanDisk issue at least a final firmware upgrade for the Clip, including a pitch fix, and again urge SanDisk to do so (now having seen the reactions of its customers, among other considerations which you have seen here), I appreciate SanDisk addressing and clarifying these matters, rather than leaving them hanging.