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SanDisk Professor
Posts: 506
Registered: ‎09-12-2015

Re: Audiobooks on JAM and Sport

One quick addition to your excellent comments and suggestions:

 

While using the auto-numbering wizard in mp3tag, make sure to check the box for "Leading zeros for tracknumbers".

This selection starts track numbering at 01, 02 etc.  With single digit numbering, the Clip Sport & Jam will play tracks in a messy order (1,11, 2, 21, etc.)

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SanDisk Senior User
Posts: 197
Registered: ‎02-27-2009

Re: Audiobooks on JAM and Sport

Edit to my previous post: The inability of the Jam to bookmark the current track number in an audiobook has become insurpassable. I've sent a request to Sandisk support requesting the feature in a new firmware (bookmarking which track number you're on, in addition to bookmarking the location within that track), but in the meantime, I'm watching eBay for used Clip+s and Zips.

SanDisk Professor
Posts: 506
Registered: ‎09-12-2015

Re: Audiobooks on JAM and Sport

Your critical comment is appropriate. What about a quick & dirty work-around ?

    Maybe use the Options menu after listening to a book chapter to delete the chapter from the player memory ??

SanDisk Senior User
Posts: 197
Registered: ‎02-27-2009

Re: Audiobooks on JAM and Sport

Thanks for the idea. It's definitely dirty, but not necessarily quick. I'm afraid I'd delete a track I still needed and would end up needing to reload the book!

 

1) My audiobooks don't typically let me know when I've switched tracks. Sometimes I'll get an older book that includes the announcement "End of track one" in the audio, but that's the exception. 

 

2) If, at some arbitrary time, like once a day, I look at my current track in the display and decide to delete all prior tracks, there's the added complication that track list only displays the first 30 characters of the title, so it's not convenient (ex. current book displays "The Girl Who Takes an Eye For a" for all 9 tracks). Preplanning & MP3Tag would be needed to edit the book tags so the track number is visible in order to make this "quick". 

 

  

The first time you lose your track, you can visit each track, if it asks you "Resume?" that's your track. Unfortunately, the 2nd time you try this, all the tracks that weren't your track the first time are now 2 seconds in, and they all offer to "Resume?" Takes quite a bit longer to find the correct track. In a 50+ track book, there are lots of opportunities to lose your place - this is the kind of book that the Jam is particularly ill-suited for. (It was a 52 track, ~60 hour book that changed my mind about the Jam being "adequate" for listening to audiobooks.)

 

Newbie
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎07-26-2009

Re: Audiobooks on JAM and Sport

This is great information. I just tried it and am hoping this has solved this problem. Not one of the four books I just downloaded had a track tag. You are the man/woman or person Smiley Happy

Newbie
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎04-03-2018

Re: Audiobooks on JAM (my wishful thinking)

*This post is about the Sandisk Clip Jam with firmware v1.13.*

 

I am disappointed in the audiobook playback on the Clip Jam. I have dyslexia so I read exclusively with audiobooks. I have tried many different audiobook players. So far the best one I have found is an app for android, but I don't like draining the battery on my phone. I decided to try the Clip Jam because the Clip+ and a couple other models were highly recommended by audiobook listeners, however those products are no longer in production.

 

This post is my wishful thinking on how I would like the audiobook playback on the Clip Jam to function based on my extensive history of listening to audiobooks. Unfortunately it's pretty much a major overhaul of the current firmware so the likelyhood of any of it actualy being added is slim. If anyone knows how to get it in the hands of the firmware developers though please let me know or feel free to pass it along.

 

Display:
When the book is playing the screen should have the author, book title, and the current track title. There should also be two progress bars, one for the total book progress and the other for the progress of the current track. (See my mock-up rendering below)

 

Mp3Audiobook player with comments.jpg

 

SD Card Integration:
Currently the books and music on the SD card do not appear in the Music or Books menus. Ideally the books and music on the device and SD card should be integrated, however if this is not possible due to hardware limitations the very least that could be done would be to have additional menus for SD card books and music. This would make it easier for those of us who frequently use SD memory to find our books.

 

Sorting Books:
The device does not have the ability to sort the books by author. This should be added.

Folders and Organization:
Audiobooks usually have multiple files. Keeping them organized is important especially for large audiobook collections.

  Folder structure 1) No folder organization:
      Audiobook Folder
          >Book Title (eg, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets)
  Folder structure 2) Some folder organization:
      Audiobook Folder
          >Author (eg, JK Rowling)
              >Book Title (eg, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets)
  Folder structure 3) Organized Folder Structure:
      Audiobook Folder
          >Author (eg, JK Rowling)
              >Book Title or Series Title (eg, Harry Potter)
                  >Book Title (if series) (eg, The Chamber of Secrets)

 

The current firmware doesn't allow for the organized folder structure. It will just group all of the individual tracks of multiple books into one big book if you try to organize your folders this way.

 

The player should be able to support each of these folder structures. The Organized Folder Structure is nice because if you have an author with many books and book series' you can keep the different series' separate. Also if your metadata info is not present, inaccurate, or incomplete you still have the author/series info, and book title. The benefit of Folder Structure 1 is that it allows for easy drag and drop of books onto the device. However if the book doesn't have proper metadata info for the Author/Series you don't have that info.

 

Audible Folder:
The Audible folder should have the ability to be removed or hidden.

 

Playing a book/Resuming playback:
The current firmware will remember the position you left off on for each track, but not what track you left off on in the book.

When playing an audiobook, instead of selecting the track, selecting the Book Title (book folder) should start playing the book. For a new (not yet started) book, the tracks should start playing in order. When resuming a book that has already been started, playback should resume in the same location and on the same track that you left off on (no need to remember the track name/number). When resuming from a long break playback should back up approximately 30 seconds to give the listener a recap (this should be configurable in settings).

 

Bookmarks:
Bookmarking is a feature that should be added to the Clip Jam. It is useful for saving a spot in a book so that you can come back to it later. It is kind of like the preset stations on the radio.

 

Button Actions:
The volume, play/pause (up button), and the back/lock buttons should not change.
When playing an audiobook the right and left buttons should have the following actions;


  Right button:
    Single click- Skip forward 10, 20, or 30 second (should be configurable in the settings)
    Double click- Skip to next track (should be configurable in the settings)
    Press and hold- Fast forward until released
  Left button:
    Single click- Rewind 10, 20, or 30 second (should be configurable in the settings)
    Double click- Go to previous track (should be configurable in the settings)
    Press and hold- Rewind until released

 

When playing a book the options button (down button) should have the following menu structure;


  Audiobook Options
      Bookmaks
          Set Bookmark
          Go to Bookmark 1
          Go to Bookmark 2 (ect)
          Delete a Bookmark
      Playback Speed: Slow/Normal/Fast
      Audiobook Settings (Global settings, should also be available in main settings)
          Display Information: Based on metadata (if present)/Based on folder structure
              Resume Recap: 30sec/off
              Next Button (Fast Forward)
                  Single Click: 10sec/20sec/30sec/Next Track/Off
                  Double Click: Next Track/Off
                  Press&Hold: Fast Forward/Off
              Previous Button (Rewind)
                  Single Click: 10sec/20sec/30sec/Next Track/Off
                  Double Click: Track/Off
                  Press&Hold: Rewind/Off
      Mark Book as New (Resets the resume point to the beginning, Bookmarks remain)
      Delete Audiobook

SanDisk Senior User
Posts: 197
Registered: ‎02-27-2009

Re: Audiobooks on JAM (my wishful thinking)

[ Edited ]

@SamCam wrote:

*This post is about the Sandisk Clip Jam with firmware v1.13.*

 ... I have tried many different audiobook players. So far the best one I have found is an app for android...

 

Hi - Can you share what app you liked best for Android?

 

Even the older Clip+s didn't have all the features on your wish list. You describe pretty much the ideal audiobook player. Smiley Happy

 

I went to SanDisk support to report the "resume playback" bookmarking issue on the Clip Jam which I thought was the most egregious regression from prior versions, and was told not to expect the Jam to work like prior versions, it's different hardware, etc. They said they appreciated me taking the time to report it, ya-da, ya-da, but I didn't feel they took it very seriously. MP3 players are probably considered a dying product line (although there are still a few of us who value them!), and probably developers are granted very few development dollars for their improvement.

 

For reporting my problem, I think this is where I went: https://kb.sandisk.com/app/ask/. 

 

 

Newbie
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎04-03-2018

Re: Audiobooks on JAM (my wishful thinking)


@kmk_01kmk wrote:

Hi - Can you share what app you liked best for Android?


Smart Audiobook Player (link here) is the one that I use on my android phone, it is actually one of the reasons I switched from an iPhone to Android. It is the best audiobook player I've ever used and I love it. It has all of the features you ever wanted in an audiobook player and they even threw in a few more that you didn't know you wanted. The free version is full featured for 30 days, after that you just have the basic features. Even though the basic version is good I do recommend purchasing the full version, I think it's $2 and well worth it. The only problem is that it's only for Android (not too big a deal since i'm never going back to an iPhone), but my phone is too large to exercise with, hence the reason I wanted a smaller audiobook mp3 player.


@kmk_01kmk wrote:

...MP3 players are probably considered a dying product line (although there are still a few of us who value them!), and probably developers are granted very few development dollars for their improvement.


 

Yeah, It seems like the only people that still use them are audiobook listeners (and there are quite a few of us). Some one should do a kickstarter for an audiobook player or even just to develop the firmware to upgrade an existing player to be optimized for audiobook playback. It probably wouldn't be too hard for someone who knows what they are doing, there is already an opensource mp3 player alternate firmware project out there, but they aren't really developing it anymore for new mp3 players, because of the decline in mp3 player popularity.

 

Since the prospects don't look good for a decent audiobook mp3 player any time soon Smiley Sad, I may just buy the smallest android phone I can find and use it as a dedicated audiobook player. 

 

SanDisk Senior User
Posts: 197
Registered: ‎02-27-2009

Re: Audiobooks on JAM (my wishful thinking)

I've done some minor investigation into rockbox (http://forums.rockbox.org/index.php?topic=51796.0). Apparently, new SanDisk players don't have enough RAM to run a custom firmware. Smiley Sad

Newbie
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎04-03-2018

Re: Audiobooks on JAM (my wishful thinking)


@kmk_01kmk wrote:

I've done some minor investigation into rockbox (http://forums.rockbox.org/index.php?topic=51796.0). Apparently, new SanDisk players don't have enough RAM to run a custom firmware. Smiley Sad


That sucks, so much for an opensource firmware solution. Smiley Sad

 

I just looked up small android phones and found one called Jelly (link here), it's not much wider than the Clip Jam but about 1.5x longer a just about as thick. I just ordered one, I'm going to see if it's worth it as an audiobook player with the Smart Audiobook Player app.