SMC is a complete WASTE OF TIME!!!

I know I’m new, so please forgive me for ranting, (I don’t want to get flamed) but I’m so frustrated with SMC I could throw all our Fuzes out the window.  Instead, I’ll probably just return them all, but it seems it’s such a simple fix for SanDisk and they just refuse to comply.

No one else finds it completely ludicrous that we have to jump through all these hoops to get videos on the Fuze?  I’m able to use ONE FREE converter with the SAME settings to convert my videos to a compatible format for use on the iPods, Zunes and Archos we have in the house.  Now, I have to rerun everything through the hit or miss, temperamental SMC program to attempt to get them to play on the Fuze only to experience lockups, incomplete conversions or poor video quality???  I purchased FOUR Fuze’s for my children and it’s beginning to look like the time and frustration caused by SMC would have made it worth the additional expense of the iPods.  To avoid these headaches, my only other option is to PURCHASE a converter program when there are tons of FREE options for every other player out there?

I would think it would be more productive to reiterate our complaints with the need for SMC to SanDisk, than to spend countless hours and forum threads on finding ways to accomodate SMC or avoid the use of it completely.  It’s not our responsibility to try to find a way for SMC to work.  How difficult would it be to release a firmware that would allow the same mpeg-4 format videos to play on the Fuze that iPods, Zunes, Archos, Creative Zen, etc… are able to play right out of the box???

The reason for the specific format SMC produces (if you’re lucky) is the lack of horsepower of the Fuze. Video will have to be reduced to low-resolution, low framerate and low bitrate in order to play at all.

I agree with you though that SMC is a useless piece of software.

On the other hand, why not play videos on your other players and enjoy the superior audio quality of the Fuze for music files?

I have resigned myself to use one of the Fuzes strictly for Audiobooks and given my iPod Touch to one of my older kids, but the two little ones were thrilled at the idea of having movies on their “little players”.  I’ve managed to accomplish two conversions, but not without much time and manuevering.  I just think it’s ridiculous to have a player able to VIEW videos on, but not without headaches and frustration while loading them.

As I said…I just needed to vent.  I feel better now :cry:…kinda

With respect, your expectations for the video capabilities of a little MP3 player with a 1.9" screen might be a little high. Video is more of an afterthought on the Fuze and comparing it to the IPod Touch for example is unfair. The SMC, in my experience, works perfectly albeit slowly, and FYI you can convert a file once and then copy it from the Fuze back to your hard drive so you can save it and/or copy it to other Fuze’s. You need not run a conversion every time. Still, you may want to see this thread for information on an alternative to the SMC.

I certainly didn’t expect the quality of the videos, especially in regards to the 1.9" screen, to be top-notch.  I wasn’t trying to compare the video capabilities of the Fuze to the Touch either.  My five year-old and eight year-old are not videophiles.  They would be happy just to see their movies on their shiny, new mp3 players.  I’m actually quite impressed with the quality of the videos I did manage to get transferred to the players.  And, I’ve converted 90 or so movies for the other players we have, so I appreciate the copy and paste tip, but I’ve been doing that already.  Believe me, there’s no way I would have reconverted any files after the time it took just to do one.

My expectations are not high…I expect a video converter that is REQUIRED to be used to actually work.  No fancy work arounds, no locking up at 49%, no purchasing an outside converter.  SanDisk requires the videos to be formatted a certain way for playback on their devices and provides the necessary converter to accomplish that.  I simply expect that converter to function as it’s suppose to.  With all the conversion programs I’ve sampled, I’ve never had to hold my breath, cross my fingers and not lay a hand on my computer during the process, in hopes the program will actually complete the only function it has.

Christinac130 wrote:

No one else finds it completely ludicrous that we have to jump through all these hoops to get videos on the Fuze?

Look around . . . there are plenty of people who share your pain but . . . there are also a lot pf people who have made it work.

As the old saying goes, “Where’s there’s a will, there’s a way.”

Just an FYI, SanDisk IS aware of the problem and has said here they are looking at ways of eliminating the need for SMC altogether. Of course, this was before the economy tanked and companies (including SD) had to start cutting back & laying off people to survive these challenging times. :wink:

Thanks for the information about the possibility of a solution to SMC :smiley:  I have seen the countless problems people have had with SMC here on the forum, but I was frustrated to see it was mostly people being steered towards purchasing an outside source program.  I had the will and made it work, I just don’t see why I had to have so much will in the first place :wink:

If the economy hadn’t tanked, I probably would have less of a problem considering the purchase of another program to convert the videos (well, maybe not).  Unfortunately, A LOT of us are feeling that particular pain  :cry:  BTW…I really appreciate a lot of your posts, you’ve been really helpful in solving a lot of the little, quirky issues I’ve had with our Fuzes.

There are a number of free conversion programs out there that work. There’s no need to buy one.

Unless you’ve got an extra 30-50 bucks layin’ around not doin’ anything! :stuck_out_tongue:

LOL…if I did, I could think of much better ways to spend it :stuck_out_tongue:

Same old rant again.  Is it beyond belief that a company would slightly exagerate the capabilities of a piece of technology?  What if you could spend $180 and get the Fuze with new chip that had complete video capability? It’s pretty remarkable what this $85 device does.  In some senses it is better than iPod products at less than half the price.

SMC DOES convert videos.  It’s probably NOT going to convert feature-length videos without occasional issues.  But seriously, feature length video on a screen less than 2"?  700 meg avi goes to 1.4 or 2.1 gigs?  Even if it worked I don’t think I’d want to have one film taking up almost 2 gigs of mem.

I take avi movies on my little digital point n shoot and then we load them onto the Fuze via SMC.  Works perfectly.

Also we get YouTube mkv files converted to avi (by vixy.net or whatever) and then SMC them into the Fuze.  Works perfectly.

@christinac130 wrote:

Currently Using: Amazon Kindle, Archos 605 Wifi 160gb, iPod Touch, Palm Centro and Sansa Fuze for Audiobooks

That’s a set of first-class gadgets there.  You get no sympathy from me. 

LOL…I can understand your opinion.  But, before you judge, they’re all hand-me-downs from my yuppie cousin.  She’s 33 with a great job and no children, I have four children (one with special needs, so unable to “work”).  I do all her techie work for her gadgets and she passes them down when she upgrades to the latest and greatest new thing.  The only thing I’ve had to purchase are the Fuzes :stuck_out_tongue:

I told you, I wasn’t looking to get flamed.  Yes, the Fuze is an affordable and nice quality electronic.  I love it for it’s music/audiobooks capabilities which, IMO at the very least match the sound quality of my iPod.  It was the perfect way to get my younger children a good device without the high price tag.  But, I was disappointed at the fact that it is advertised to play mpeg-4 videos without the explanation of the need for SMC.  Even here on the Sansa site, there is no mention in the compatible file format specs that you must use their program to reconvert your mpeg-4 videos.  I think a little heads up when you purchase and a detailed conversion manual would be appreciated by many.  Especially novices to the electronics world.

Can I redirect what I said to your yuppie cousin? :neutral_face:

Just to put the SMC thing in perspective, the more expensive Sony noise cancelling MP3 player NWZ-S736F come with a nice 2" screen, but *NO* video conversion app.  Only a small table in the back of the manual that gives the required formats (WMV, MPEG-4, AVC/H.264) and frame and bit rates.  No hints to the rookie that you need to buy/find a video conversion app and convert to the specs in that table.

So the SMC video solution for the Fuze, while not the best, is not the worst, either.

come with a nice 2" screen, but *NO* video conversion app.  Only a small table in the back of the manual that gives the required formats (WMV, MPEG-4, AVC/H.264) and frame and bit rates.  No hints to the rookie that you need to buy/find a video conversion app and convert to the specs in that table.

 

That would be ideal.  Because it allows for the use of any of tens (hundreds?) of video converters, both free and paid for, on any OS.  This has to be better than one not-very-compatible app on one OS.  I’d call it a feature, not a deficiency.

I posted this info somewhere else but here it is again in case it helps the OP and others: http://forums.sandisk.com/sansa/board/message?board.id=sansafuse&message.id=30352#M30352

“When you install Sansa Media Converter it comes with the codecs it needs.  But if you then install a codec pack, or already have a newer version of mpeg-4 codec then you may find that SMC fails.  I use the Combined Community Codec Pack http://cccp-project.net/  whose installer detects this and advises you of the possible conflict between the two mpeg-4 encoders.  Probably the best thing to do is to re-install SMC.  I had some movies fail to convert but all seems OK now after installing CCCP and then installing SMC again afterwards.”

The actual playback quality from SMC encoded video is better than I’d expected but it certainly is a real PITA to encode, especially for those of us who don’t have much use for MS Windows and/or would like to batch convert video without having the player (and preferred OS!) unavailable due to being obliged to keep it connected while encoding.  I have several other small video capable devices and all of them allow me to use them how I like, not just how the manufacturer and partners dictate.  When/if the Fuze can break the tie with the InterVideo software it will be a real bonus.

Regarding filesizes I find that I get a reasonable reduction in filesize i.e. a 480x352 350MB .avi (typical tv episode) becomes smaller by about 15% when converted by SMC for the Fuze.  I suspect that people who find the files get bigger may have a video codec other than the SMC mpeg-4 installed, and also may be encoding from a source that has highly compressed audio in something like AAC+ (aka HE AAC).  When converted to mp3 this will inevitably be quite a lot bigger.

I have found that my videos converted to mpeg-4 from an AVI file using the Mediacoder for iPod edition work well, but stall out at the 49% mark in the overall conversion bar.  If I cancel the conversion but save the project, I still have the necessary output video for the Fuze since it seems the last 51% is just transferring the video to the actual device.  The problem I’m having is that if I’m doing other things on the computer and happen to switch back to SMC, no matter where it is in the conversion process, it ends itself.  This usually leaves me with only a 1/4 of the movie converted.  As long as I don’t touch my computer at all during the conversion process, it follows through to the 49% mark and I’m able to transfer the video to the Fuze manually. 

It’s a bit of a pain not to be able to use my computer during the conversion since it’s an unusually long process for a relatively small original file.  My mpeg-4 files are set to a pretty high audio and video rate since I’m also converting for iPod Classics and a Touch, but they turn out beautifully on the Fuze IF they actually manage to complete. :angry:

My files are being reduced from over 700mbs to right around 540mbs.  My girls have 8gb cards in their 8gb Fuze so they have plenty of room for more videos if I could find a way, or the patience to get them on there without pulling my hair out :cry:

You know,it’s really not so difficult to put video on to you’re Fuze.I have an 8gb Fuze with a 16gb microSD card and i put tons of video on my Fuze.At any given time i’ll have hours of tv and even movies on my little guy.It’s really not so difficult.Here’s what i do.Take whatever given video file you want on your Fuze, be it a ripped dvd or a downloaded file and convert it to an avi. file using AnyVideoConverter(you can download this program for free) the Fuze likes avi. and it will save you a great amount of memory.Then use the SMC to  put the video on your Fuze.Done.Thats it.Now, as you seem to be having problems with  the SMC, try totally deleting the SMC,clear your registry and then download the SMC again.This has worked for me in the past. As an aside,at the moment i have four episodes of Eureka,two 90 minute episodes of Midsomer Murders and at least 10 episodes of Mobile Suit Gundam Seed (  @ 25 minutes a pop).I like to watch the Fuze on my Lunch break.Look,i’m no computer wiz trust me.It can be done and it’s not at all hard.By the way you can convert your mp4 files to avi. using the converter i suggested…I find the picture resolution and audio quality to be excellent.

Ah but they could add mpeg/mpeg2 support like rockbox has and still come out ahead, mpeg conversion(to mpeg) is FAST and you can get the size down very very nicely, I have seen reports of people getting 30+fps videos to play at full speed on the fuze using beta rockbox!!!

If they where smart sansa/sandisk would just have their programmers work with the rockbox team and get out a new firmware thats based on rockbox native to the fuze, doing this would also mean they wouldnt have to do firmware upgrades/updated themselves since the rockbox guys could do that work if needed.

I also think from something I was reading a while back that the fuze COULD run mpeg4/avc videos BUT the problem is that the firmware dosnt support it and it eats batt power due to the higher load on the player when decoding it.

Intervideo make a hell of a dvd player software(windvd is still my favorite dvd player for pc) but they are crap when it comes to encoding, Sansa would be better off helping elemental(badaboom) and MediaCoder support their players since at least those 2 companies are putting out kickass encoding/transcoding software now :smiley:

Thank you very much…my point exactly :smiley:

   I believe you may have missed my point,in that yes, we all agree there are problems with the SMC.I don’t believe anyone is disputing that but,it is not impossible to put video onto your Fuze.It continues to be done successfully by many of use.Give it another try ,i put new video on my Fuze nearly everyday.It can be done.   

Guess what: someone on this forum managed to figure out how to certain settings in MEncoder and AVIMux to convert videos to Fuze-compatible formats WITHOUT SMC.  As a result a program has been created based on this great hero’s dicovery, called “Video4Fuze”.  I downloaded/tested this program as soon as I heard of it, and IT WORKED!!!  The quality is great, and the list of supported input formats (formats to be converted) is extremly long (since this program uses the famous MEncoder).