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  #1  
Old 12-27-2013, 09:30 AM
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The DarkSide The DarkSide is offline
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Thumbs down No AAC Playback on ClipZip with STOCK FIRMWARE?

I tried to put 128kbps AAC files, converted with Sony MediaGo, onto my stock FW CZ. The first time the files wouldn't show in the library, but the space on the player was allocated to "files" which didn't show up. This was in MSC mode.

The second time (after wiping the files on the player) I used MTP mode to transfer 5 AAC files to the CZ. They showed up in the library, the album art was perfect. I hit "PLAY" and the CZ would just cycle through the songs & play nothing.

Now, I'm wondering, does the CZ actually still have issues with AAC? Or is there an issue when using MediaGo? I'm looking to just keep the stock FW on board, since this player is only for working out. My goal is small size & decent SQ - and 128kbps AAC is what I'd prefer to use.

Hopefully you guys have an answer, or can link me to a SanDisk forums thread addressing the issue I'm having.
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Old 12-27-2013, 10:54 AM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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Check the file extension and length. IIRC MG creates files using the .mp4 extension. The OF recognizes them but won't play them. Changing the extension to m4a should work.

The AAC decoder in the OF also won't play files longer than ~10-12 minutes. The get recognized but skipped like the ones with the .mp4 extension.
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Old 12-27-2013, 11:43 AM
Mikerman Mikerman is offline
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Very interesting, that. Also, SanDisk has confirmed that aac files encoded by some rippers (Nero's was one of them) just won't work with the Zip. Specifically and for one, unless SanDisk has changed matters, the Zip is not compatible with MPEG4 codec mp42 version 2 -- it's a matter of royalties in the pay-to-use aac field. iTunes, the "main" ripper in the field, is fine.

Last edited by Mikerman; 12-27-2013 at 11:51 AM.
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Old 12-27-2013, 11:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skip252 View Post
Check the file extension and length. IIRC MG creates files using the .mp4 extension. The OF recognizes them but won't play them. Changing the extension to m4a should work.

The AAC decoder in the OF also won't play files longer than ~10-12 minutes. The get recognized but skipped like the ones with the .mp4 extension.
All the files were under 10min, but I'll be damned if I edit the tags on 1,150 songs!!! LOL!!! I'll try mediaMonkey instead,...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikerman View Post
And indeed, the Zip does have issues with aac files generally: SanDisk has confirmed that aac files encoded by some rippers (I believe that Nero's was one of them) just won't work with the Zip. (Who would have known? I had assumed that an aac file was an aac file was an aac file.)
And I figured there just might be an issue with MediaGo, but being so selective is ridiculous on the part of Sansa. Especially since every aspect of the MG software works perfectly for me.

Oh well,...on to the MM installation I guess.

Thanks guys!!!

OK,...MediaMonkey is now installed. I'll see how it goes for the conversion & sync. Wish me luck,...
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Old 12-27-2013, 11:57 AM
Mikerman Mikerman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The DarkSide View Post
And I figured there just might be an issue with MediaGo, but being so selective is ridiculous on the part of Sansa.
It's a matter of royalties in the aac pay-to-use field: SanDisk covered the largest ripper in the field, iTunes, but chose not to have to deal with other codecs (such as the one used by Nero: MPEG4 codec mp42 version 2). But confusing for the average user, who just looks at it all as aac files and wouldn't have any idea which aac codec was used--especially when using a "name brand" ripper.
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Old 12-27-2013, 12:04 PM
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Well, unless your on a MAC, iTunes won't sync with a Sansa player. Idiots,...
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Old 12-27-2013, 12:12 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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The issue with MPEG4 codec mp42 version 2 files was resolved a long time ago with the 01.01.17 firmware update. Files encoded with Winamp, Nero, FAAC and FFmpeg all work for me with nothing more than making sure the extension is .m4a. The same files that wouldn't before that play just fine with that update and the ones that came after. The only problems that still exist are the ones I named before, extension and file length. All of the other issues with bursts of noise and type of AAC encoding were dealt with in firmware updates.

It's renaming that's needed, not tag editing or re-encoding. I use a portable version of Ant Renamer. Takes a few seconds to do thousands of files. It easily changes the file extension without all the warnings you get if you do it in Explorer. It needs a drive letter to work so it won't work on files loaded on a player in MTP. If you rename them before transfer they work fine.
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Old 12-27-2013, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The DarkSide View Post
Hopefully you guys have an answer, or can link me to a SanDisk forums thread addressing the issue I'm having.
You know what my answer would be....
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  #9  
Old 12-27-2013, 01:46 PM
saratoga saratoga is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikerman View Post
It's a matter of royalties in the aac pay-to-use field: SanDisk covered the largest ripper in the field, iTunes, but chose not to have to deal with other codecs (such as the one used by Nero: MPEG4 codec mp42 version 2). But confusing for the average user, who just looks at it all as aac files and wouldn't have any idea which aac codec was used--especially when using a "name brand" ripper.
Royalties are the same for all aac-lc files. Their decoder is just really buggy. Doesn't help that aac is a stupidly complex format.
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Old 12-27-2013, 02:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skip252 View Post
The issue with MPEG4 codec mp42 version 2 files was resolved a long time ago with the 01.01.17 firmware update.
Great to hear and thanks for the info. and update correction--I don't flow with aac, and so didn't recall such a fix. (Interestingly, the 01.01.17 Release Notes don't seem to say anything about the fix, and go on to note, "AAC files encoded with Microsoft mp4-2 variable bit rate cannot be played (Work around: User can use different encoder or encode songs to different supporting formats)." Ah, but just found release 18 saying that this had been fixed with that latest update. Happy to hear, for aac users, that the ultimate news is positive.)
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Old 12-27-2013, 02:06 PM
Mikerman Mikerman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saratoga View Post
Royalties are the same for all aac-lc files. Their decoder is just really buggy. Doesn't help that aac is a stupidly complex format.
Had based my royalties issue comment on info. from SanDisk--I wouldn't know otherwise . . . .
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  #12  
Old 12-27-2013, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skip252 View Post
The issue with MPEG4 codec mp42 version 2 files was resolved a long time ago with the 01.01.17 firmware update. Files encoded with Winamp, Nero, FAAC and FFmpeg all work for me with nothing more than making sure the extension is .m4a. The same files that wouldn't before that play just fine with that update and the ones that came after. The only problems that still exist are the ones I named before, extension and file length. All of the other issues with bursts of noise and type of AAC encoding were dealt with in firmware updates.

It's renaming that's needed, not tag editing or re-encoding. I use a portable version of Ant Renamer. Takes a few seconds to do thousands of files. It easily changes the file extension without all the warnings you get if you do it in Explorer. It needs a drive letter to work so it won't work on files loaded on a player in MTP. If you rename them before transfer they work fine.
Can I do the renaming operation while the files are on the player? I can just put it in MSC mode,...I hope.

And Marv,...go suck an egg!!!
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Old 12-27-2013, 03:23 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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I don't think files transferred in MTP can be viewed in MSC. If you're lucky enough to switch modes and can see them you'll be able to rename them. If not, drag them off in whatever mode you can see them, rename them then drag them back on in either mode and they should work.
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Old 12-27-2013, 04:15 PM
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Before going crazy renaming that many files, try two or three.

Steve
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Old 12-27-2013, 04:54 PM
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There's a preview function to see what the renamed files will be before you make any changes. I'd think someone as experienced as TDS wouldn't mass rename a ton of files without some experimentation. Even if he did it shouldn't be a problem. It's really simple to change the name back if it doesn't work.

Edit:
Quote:
I'd think someone as experienced as TDS wouldn't mass rename a ton of files without some experimentation.
On second thought...maybe if he's had a few...
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  #16  
Old 12-27-2013, 08:40 PM
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No, no drinkytime tonight. Well,...now that you suggested it,...

Now, MM doesn't have an option to convert on sync to AAC. There is no AAC conversion at all. I'm thinking J.River then???

Man,...this is a real friggin' PITA!!!
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  #17  
Old 12-27-2013, 09:45 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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What's the source for the files or playlists you want to sync? If you create them with a quality AAC encoder like iTunes they won't need conversion and Musicbee will sync the files and playlists.

If you want MB to deal with AAC files you'll need to add a plugin but the Help Page links you directly to it. You can also pick up a copy of the Nero encoder from links on that same page. There's a way to use the Apple encoder that doesn't take a lot of set up I use. It's a bit of a pain to write it all up so unless you decide that's the way you want to go I'll hold off. Once set it up you're using the same encoder thati Tunes uses and that's considered very good. At 128 kbps I can sometimes, and I mean very rarely, ABX a difference between Nero and iTunes AAC but not enough where I notice for on the go use.
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Old 12-27-2013, 10:02 PM
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All my files are in mp3 format, and high bitrate (re: large file size for my usage). I'll try out MusicBee tomorrow and see if it works for me.

Thanks skip252!!!

I'm downloading, installing, and letting MB scan my files now. Tomorrow I'll do the conversion/sync. Me tired,...

Last edited by The DarkSide; 12-27-2013 at 10:13 PM.
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Old 12-28-2013, 02:20 PM
saratoga saratoga is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikerman View Post
Had based my royalties issue comment on info. from SanDisk--I wouldn't know otherwise . . . .
They're probably confusing the AAC-HE things with AAC-LC. Basically, a lot of the AAC flavors cost extra to fully use, but they're all backwards compatible with AAC-LC. So in theory if you have paid for the basic AAC-LC codec, you should be able to decode the more expensive variants as well, although perhaps at reduced quality (AAC-HE files decode at half the sampling rate if you don't pay for HE support). But they should all play. In theory. In practice AAC is kind of a poorly designed format, so its pretty random if any given decoder can handle any given encoder's files.

From what I remember of the sandisk forums, they have a similar problem as rockbox used to have where long files required more memory than was available for tracks longer than 10 or 20 minutes due to some dumb things about the format. We eventually hacked around this problem, but I don't think they ever did.
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Old 12-28-2013, 04:44 PM
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I'm syncing now, using MusicBee, and using the "portable device" setting w/the NERO AAC encoder. I even managed to include a "Mixes" playlist on now. This will be fine for portable usage for when I hit the park for my calisthenics workouts.

Sample routine:

20 pull-ups
35 push-ups
25 BW squats
50 crunches

Then the weight vest goes on,...

Then some presses & squats w/a kettlebell.

I'm getting better by the week now,...FINALLY!!! All I wanted was my tunes - and I want 'em ALL!!!

Thanks skip252!!!
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