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  #1  
Old 03-24-2008, 08:24 PM
Eredor Eredor is offline
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Default Is Creative Slowly Dying?

with huge financial losses and products that interest less than they should, is this a sign that creative is a company on the brink of extinction?
http://epizenter.net/comment.php?comment.news.385
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Old 03-24-2008, 08:30 PM
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I just don't think they are doing much to position themselves in the market...the Vision M was a GREAT competitor to the Ipod but it was under marketed...then they ditched the HD format altogether with the Zen and again, never marketed it...So many people though the first 32gb flash player was the Touch...The V/V+ was never quite enough to seriously challenge the Nano (hell, it had trouble standing up to the e200 series)...so basically, it's not marketed/popular enough to challenge Apple, the SQ is not strong enough to challenge Cowon and the price isn't low enough to challenge Sandisk...they are basically middle of the road from most angles and that leads to the problems that they are having. They need to find an identity and a niche if they want to pull this out...
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Old 03-24-2008, 08:40 PM
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Besides their great media players, Creative has the best sound cards.
- but not many people know/care about the advantages (sound quality) of having a good sound card.
- those who buy a sound card don't need to upgrade for their pc's entire lifespan (unlike video cards).

Of course, this means poor sales.
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  #4  
Old 03-30-2008, 07:40 PM
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Default Creative in trouble due to anti-consumer practices

One of the reasons why I chose to go with an MP3 player other than an iPod is because I do not agree with the corporate ethics of the Cupertino company. For those of you who feel the same way, Creative has recently joined the ranks of Apple as far as questionable, anti-consumer business practices.

Creative Incites Internet Wrath with Actions Against Supporter

This is going well beyond just a customer backlash in Creative's forums, as Newegg has released press comment related to a temporary stoppage of selling Creative products with resumption of sale based on a change in Creative's business practices.

While I never encourage anyone to trash talk a manufacturer or troll their forums, I do recommend a soulsearching concerning supporting the company further at this point. 5000 Creative product refunds have been requested from NewEgg in the past 48 hours, and I will be a part of the next wave.

I don't encourage visceral reaction; please think about whether or not you can ethically support a company that intentionally limits product functionality to force upgrades. The Zen series might be a good product line, but I can no longer encourage my friends to consider it for purchase.
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Old 03-30-2008, 07:43 PM
AshG AshG is offline
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It doesn't help when you are facing massive returns from one of the largest retailers in the world, not to mention massive potential class-action lawsuits.
http://boycottcreative.com/Newegg_Backup.html
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  #6  
Old 03-30-2008, 07:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Little Guy View Post
Besides their great media players, Creative has the best sound cards.
- but not many people know/care about the advantages (sound quality) of having a good sound card.
- those who buy a sound card don't need to upgrade for their pc's entire lifespan (unlike video cards).
I nearly fell out of my chair laughing, reading about them being the "best". Dude, even the priciest Creative sound cards are at most "mediocre". They're mere consumer products, sold with a lot of market speech mumbo-jumbo ("Elite", "Extreme", "Pro", ...). They might be nice for gaming, but that's about it.

For serious sound cards better check out RME, M-Audio, Echo, ESI, or other no-nonsense companies that make professional sound cards.

BTW, some more discussions: http://hardware.slashdot.org/hardwar...9/046201.shtml
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Old 03-30-2008, 08:12 PM
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people just care about how EAX makes their shots sound "hollow" in a tunnel when they play their favorit FPS or how the crytalizer saturates and distorts their 128kbit mp3s,

creative will probobly rebadge some cheaply built product, enable DTS or EAX 5.23654 in the drivers and all the lemmings will be happy for a few more months,

i have a xtreme music, not a day passes that i dont regret buying this piece of junk,
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Old 03-31-2008, 05:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
I nearly fell out of my chair laughing, reading about them being the "best". Dude, even the priciest Creative sound cards are at most "mediocre". They're mere consumer products, sold with a lot of market speech mumbo-jumbo ("Elite", "Extreme", "Pro", ...). They might be nice for gaming, but that's about it.
What was I thinking when I typed "the best"? I should've put "popular sound cards" I do agree with you. They are almost like an "Ipod" sound card; popular choice for typical consumer, an eye-catching name, but expensive.

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Originally Posted by Aevum View Post
people just care about how EAX makes their shots sound "hollow" in a tunnel when they play their favorit FPS or how the crytalizer saturates and distorts their 128kbit mp3s,
One of my family members has a Creative sound card. When I was helping configure it, I tried out the crystallizer (the sound card's control panel even recommended it). It was not pleasing to the ears.
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Old 03-31-2008, 05:23 PM
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True that, they certainly are the most popular brand name among sound cards.
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  #10  
Old 04-07-2008, 10:53 PM
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Regarding sale of their building in Singapore, I only see it as a means of conserving money by not spending it where it's not needed. Owning a building, with all of the maintenance that encompasses, is simply not cost-effective in our current economic times. I don't see this as a sign of Creative "dying" so much as I see it as trying to pool their resources where they're needed the most - to compete in a cutthroat market.

Regarding their actions against "Daniel_k"... I'm at a loss there. Without having fully analyzed what happened, it appears that he was using bits and pieces of Creative-owned or licensed code in his modded drivers. This, in itself, could cause legal issues; however, when coupled with requests for donations, this is likely where he ran into trouble. In the corporate legal world, there is no difference between asking for donations for "borrowed" IP and selling the IP outright.

Still, this could have been handled sooo much better than it was. Creative has, in effect, shot off its own nose to spite its face, and that's going to cost them dearly.

I also sense that there may have been cross-licensing issues. Since the specific technologies in question are licensed by Dolby Laboratories, Creative may not have secured the necessary licenses to use Dolby's technologies in their Vista drivers, and "Daniel_k's" drivers may have created potential trouble for Creative with Dolby Labs. *shrugs*

It wouldn't be the first time Creative bowed down to another corporate or legal entity at the detriment of its consumer base. Anyone remember when Creative pulled FM Recording capability from its Vision:Ms?

For what it's worth, it appears Creative has had a change of heart, and have agreed to allow "Daniel_k" to distribute his modded drivers again, though he may be prohibited from requesting donations for his work.
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  #11  
Old 04-24-2008, 11:06 AM
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i agree almost fully with you zenchick

i dont so much care about the singapore building

but creative is very poorly marketed vs its biggest competitor in popularity being something like apple or the zune apple which has immense word of mouth advertising because of sheeps and the zune has actual marketing the creative marketing i cant recall ever seeing a commercial for their products especially mp3 players.
Their soundcards are the ipod of soundcards and i personally have the xfi gamer elite or w/e the 140$ one is and it makes my call of duty sound amazing and helps my fps a lil

but they had a great product in their vision line and it seems like they are axing it instead of working towards improving them, which is sad because if they threw bigger HDD and a mess of codec support like cowon has
they would be a fairly easy sell

and as for the daniel K situation most companies will not endorse or support 3rd party drivers for many reason 1 of which being as you stated potential legal conflicts with patents or distribution rights. The other is content ownership on creatives part. Third being the risk involved by people not downloading a driver from creative.com if people download a file that says its for creative soundcard and it turns out to be a virus and they lose thousands of dollars cuz someone stole their credit card numbers and blah blah blah people have a tendency to go after a company like creative even though it would be thrown out in court OR you will get people calling and complaining about things with those drivers.
Creative handled it poorly but there wasnt a whole lot of ways to handle it other then saying we dont endorse or support it because we cant
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  #12  
Old 04-27-2008, 06:14 PM
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i keep wondering why a company just won't make the one thing that has everything that people want. if they can do that with the zen share, and spend a little pocket change for advertising it, then creative will have much more customers. i'm starting to believe creative's leaving the mp3 player business, and if they can't make something as good as my ZVM was, then fine they should leave and continue to produce better sound cards that other companies can use to make a good digital media player.
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  #13  
Old 06-12-2008, 02:04 PM
lgilmore23 lgilmore23 is offline
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Well, microsoft has marketed the zune and it has done a whole lot better than any other mp3 player out there (besides apple). So obviously marketing works considering the two top companies seem to be the only ones I see when I turn on the tv. Creative would have a huge boost in sales if they market the new share/x-fi/whatever and not miss the chance like they did first with the zvm and then with the zen.
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Old 06-12-2008, 02:51 PM
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FWIW I think this depends on where the sales are and where the originating manufacturer exists. For instance, even though iRiver fairs very poorly for U.S. sales, they are number one in Korea. As a reverse effect, the iPod, which is the most popular DAP in the U.S, is I believe dead last in Korea sales.
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  #15  
Old 06-13-2008, 05:42 PM
lgilmore23 lgilmore23 is offline
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true, but I would like to see more people in the U.S. give it a try and think about buying something other than an ipod for a change. This would happen if people only knew about creatives.
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  #16  
Old 06-25-2008, 10:00 AM
ktronis ktronis is offline
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Default My 2 cents as a Vision:M owner

Just came upon this thread, so I hope I'm not too late to the party.

I just had to add my two cents worth, as an owner of a Creative Vision:M mp3 player. I have to say I am disappointed in this unit, for two big reasons: (1) when you choose to play songs in shuffle mode, it isn't very random at all. I'm sure almost all owners of a Vision:M know what I'm talking about. It's like it has a list in mind and just plays the songs in that order every time. (2) The freeze-ups that happen sometimes when fast-forwarding to the next song. These seem to be happening more frequently lately on my player. I thought I had it determined that if I fast-forwarded too soon, within the first 1 or 2 seconds of a song, that is what would likely trigger a freeze-up. But, I had one happen a couple of days ago after letting the song play for 6 seconds. This is quite maddening, especially when you are not in a position to reset the player, such as when driving or if you don't happen to have anything on hand as thin as a paper clip.

I just looked at Creative's site, and I notice they still are on firmware version 1.62.02, which was released a year ago. So, I guess they don't plan on offering any more upgrades to this player, which tells me they have in essence abandoned me as a customer of this product.

There are other minor annoyances I have with the Vision:M. The album art is too small (yes, I actually like to see it ), you cannot sort the music in album order (I could on my old Toshiba Gigabeat), and of course that silly dongle which is needed for recharging. What a dumb idea that was.

I tend to agree with Lawrence, above, that maybe Creative is leaving the mp3 player business. Based on my own experience, I wont look to buy another of their mp3 players anytime soon. In fact, I will probably just go with the flow and get an iPod next time. Oh the blasphemy!
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Old 06-27-2008, 12:22 PM
Poseidon88 Poseidon88 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktronis View Post
I just had to add my two cents worth, as an owner of a Creative Vision:M mp3 player. I have to say I am disappointed in this unit, for two big reasons: (1) when you choose to play songs in shuffle mode, it isn't very random at all. I'm sure almost all owners of a Vision:M know what I'm talking about. It's like it has a list in mind and just plays the songs in that order every time.
Actually, I couldn't disagree more. The problem, as I see it is that the random play order is TOO random. Therein may lie the problem you are complaining about. It doesn't do anything to ensure that you get a good mix of music. It just creates a random playlist. Because most people have a large collection of music from their favorite artists, that means you will often get songs from the same artist or album playing right after one another. People often mistake this quirk of statistics for "not very random." The other issue is that it regenerates the random playlist every time you skip a song. This means that sometimes you'll hear the same song more than once in a random play session. Suggestion: If you aren't happy with the randomness or perceived lack thereof, download a third-party tool that will generate playlists with more bias as to the ordering of songs. Then copy those playlists to your ZVM and use that instead of the random play all function.

Quote:
(2) The freeze-ups that happen sometimes when fast-forwarding to the next song. These seem to be happening more frequently lately on my player.
That would certainly be annoying. I haven't had that particular problem. I've noticed sometimes, with audio podcast files that have been converted to video format (so they show up in the zencast folder), I get lockups when trying to skip ahead or back, and sometimes the player will just freeze up while playing one. This only seems to happen with one particular podcast I listen to, though, so it may have something to do with their encoding. Your problem may be encoding related as well. Try to note if it always happens with the same songs.

Quote:
I just looked at Creative's site, and I notice they still are on firmware version 1.62.02, which was released a year ago. So, I guess they don't plan on offering any more upgrades to this player, which tells me they have in essence abandoned me as a customer of this product.
Well, to be fair, the Vision:M has been out for almost 3 years now, and they are now discontinued. You can't reasonably expect them to provide active support for a discontinued product. That said, if you contact Creative and tell them about the problems you're having, they may repair or replace your unit, assuming it's still under warranty.

Quote:
There are other minor annoyances I have with the Vision:M. The album art is too small (yes, I actually like to see it ), you cannot sort the music in album order (I could on my old Toshiba Gigabeat),
I'm not sure what you're talking about here. My music is sorted in album order when I browse to a particular album. Note that your MP3 files must have ID3 data that indicates what track it is on the album for this to work. Otherwise, it just gets sorted in alphabetical order.

Quote:
and of course that silly dongle which is needed for recharging. What a dumb idea that was.
This I won't argue. I already lost the one that came with my ZVM and had to buy a replacement. It was a long week when I couldn't charge it.

Quote:
I tend to agree with Lawrence, above, that maybe Creative is leaving the mp3 player business. Based on my own experience, I wont look to buy another of their mp3 players anytime soon.
Yeah, it seems pretty obvious, from looking at their online store that they aren't doing much with their lineup anymore. They're out of stock on just about every media player they sell. And I haven't seen any announcements of new models.

Quote:
In fact, I will probably just go with the flow and get an iPod next time. Oh the blasphemy!
Don't know if I'd go that far But then, I have a friend on the Zune team at Microsoft. I hear things. When my ZVM kicks the bucket, I may be headed that way.
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Old 06-27-2008, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktronis View Post
(1) when you choose to play songs in shuffle mode, it isn't very random at all. I'm sure almost all owners of a Vision:M know what I'm talking about. It's like it has a list in mind and just plays the songs in that order every time.
I haven't noticed this problem myself; however, I don't have any playlists with more than a couple hundred songs programmed in, so I haven't noticed any patterns. On the other hand, the reshuffling of the playlist when I decide to skip a track can get annoying with smaller playlists. *shrug*
Quote:
Originally Posted by ktronis View Post
(2) The freeze-ups that happen sometimes when fast-forwarding to the next song. These seem to be happening more frequently lately on my player. I thought I had it determined that if I fast-forwarded too soon, within the first 1 or 2 seconds of a song, that is what would likely trigger a freeze-up. But, I had one happen a couple of days ago after letting the song play for 6 seconds. This is quite maddening, especially when you are not in a position to reset the player, such as when driving or if you don't happen to have anything on hand as thin as a paper clip.
This isn't a problem of the player's design, but is a problem with your specific player. The occasional freeze-ups you're experiencing sounds indicative of a filesystem problem. Try booting your player into Recovery Mode and running a Disk Cleanup. That should fix the problem.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ktronis View Post
you cannot sort the music in album order (I could on my old Toshiba Gigabeat), and of course that silly dongle which is needed for recharging. What a dumb idea that was.
I'm not exactly sure what you mean by the music sorting in album order; could you explain?

I do agree about the dongle though. This has always been, to me, the Achilles' Heal on an otherwise outstanding design.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ktronis View Post
I tend to agree with Lawrence, above, that maybe Creative is leaving the mp3 player business. Based on my own experience, I wont look to buy another of their mp3 players anytime soon. In fact, I will probably just go with the flow and get an iPod next time. Oh the blasphemy!
I'm just going to pretend I didn't hear that!

No MP3 player is perfect. Even the iPod has problems, and lots of them. But you shouldn't limit yourself to just Creative or iPod, as there are a number of good, competent players out nowadays. Me, I'm waiting to see how this new X-Fi-based player pans out.
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Old 06-28-2008, 10:03 AM
ktronis ktronis is offline
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Regarding the shuffle problem...okay, Poseidon88 and I will have to "agree to disagree" on that one. I can understand and accept that it regenerates a random playlist each time, but I certainly don't see the problem as the selections being too random. Quite the opposite in my experience. For example, if I play an entire genre, such as Alternative, which for me contains approximately 500 songs and 25 different artists, I could probably identify about 30 songs that are just about guaranteed to play each time, yet 150-200 songs that almost never come up. That doesn't make any sense. Even as it favors a few of the 25 artists, it doesn't even pick a good mix of songs from that artist. Furthering the above example, I have one Alternative artist that has 4 albums and about 45-50 songs, yet it will pick from approximately the same 5 songs from that artist every time. I will look into some of the 3rd party tools as suggested, but one would think you wouldn't have to resort to that just to get decent random play. Maybe the issue is that I tend to rely on playing Genres and I haven't done much in the way of creating my own Playlists. Again, something I'll have to look into.

On the freezeups...thanks ZenChick on the idea to try Recovery Mode and Disk Cleanup. I'll give that a try. Poseidon88, I will check my receipt but I am almost certain the player is out of warranty at this point.

I don't even know what I was talking about with regards to sorting in album order. It does sort first by Genre, then Artist, and then Album order within a specific Artist.

Finally on the iPod, while I can't say that I have researched them greatly, I can say that of the people I know personally who have mp3 players, they all have iPods. I cannot recall anyone mentioning major, major problems they have run into. Such problems might exist, but I am going by what I have heard first-hand, which is important to me. Also, it seems there are about 9 billion accessories for iPods, way more than for any other brand.

Money's tight, so I don't plan on running right out and buying anything for now.
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Old 07-22-2008, 08:54 PM
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128gb flash zvm-2 with 3" 16m color screen and we are back in the game. Ipod makes good looking turds everyday and they sell like hotcakes to all the sheep. Marketing wins
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