Archive for firmware

Cowon Upgrades the E2 Firmware Based on Our Review

cowon iaudio e2 fimrwarefix Cowon Upgrades the E2 Firmware Based on Our Review

The Cowon E2 in my opinion is the best screenless MP3 player on the market, but I did take issue with the fact that there was no way to skip folders. From the Cowon E2 review:

“There is one missing, skip by folder. You can skip to the next track all you want but if you have a lot of tracks it might be rough to find what you want. If there was a way to navigate by folder it would make it much easier to find the music you want. It could be implemented one of two ways: a long press on the volume buttons or a combination of skip scan + the power button.”

Cowon sent me an email this morning to let me know this was updated:

“After reading your review, we decided to reflect your advice on our E2 firmware.”

Though I think that the solution that Cowon offers is better than the two methods I offered in my review. It is a similar solution to how it is done on Rockbox. Here is how it now works:

“To skip to the next folder, press FF button shortly, and within 2 seconds, press and hold FF button. (you will hear water drop sound) To skip to the previous folder, press REW button shortly, and within 2 seconds, press and hold REW button. (you will hear water drop sound) – Move to the first song if there is no folder. – Move to the first part of the song if there is only one song. – Skip by folder feature is not supported in shuffle mode.”

Join us in the Cowon forums where your opinion matters and respected by the people that make the devices you love.

Find the firmware on CowonGlobal or here is the direct download.

How to Turn Your Cowon D2 Into a D2+

d2 d2 plus main How to Turn Your Cowon D2 Into a D2+

An updated version of the D2 was just released a few weeks ago and dubbed the D2+. Many of us where a bit puzzled as to the minimal changes made through out the firmware. Changes were made in the firmware adding BBE+ enhancement and new GUI with the psychical design being the biggest noticeable change. Though now we know that most of the internal components have remained unchanged thanks to a few industrious and enthusiastic D2 owners.

It turns out that the D2+ firmware can be brute forced onto the D2 with a tool developed by the Rockbox crew, TCCTool- originally used to load firmware on bricked Telechip based devices. The steps to do this can be found in the D2 forums- Martin has even updated his popular More Mono theme to the D2+ firmware.

Updating the design, giving it a firmware refresh, and calling it a D2+ is a great idea, but leaving old D2 users behind in the firmware refresh is another story. The Zune has already set the precedent for this when they still continue to update 2+ year old hardware with the same firmware as on the newest Zunes. So D2 fans become quite envious of the Zune and a bit abandoned Cowon. With that said, it would be honorable of them to go ahead and give the long time D2 owners the D2+ firmware upgrade without having to hack it. Hacks might cause an increase in support too.

Below are a few photos of the D2 running the D2+ firmware as well as RMAA proof showing that changing the firmware has also changed the sound signature from BBE to BBE+.

Update: Cowon contacted us to warn that there is risk in bricking (damaging/rendering it useless) your D2 by doing this. So in my words, do this at your own risk.

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Cowon S9 2.10b Adds Widgets and Lots of Other Updates

s9 widgets Cowon S9 2.10b Adds Widgets and Lots of Other Updates

Cowon just rolled out a beta of a fairly substantial firmware update to the S9. A list of the added and improved functions can be found here along with a download link. The important updates to note are the additions of widgets and the pitch correction on the video playback. These are noteworthy since these are some features the Samsung P3 already has.

I have been carrying both the Cowon S9 and the Samsung P3 for the last few months and they are both worthy opponents on features and on quality. Though personally I found that I use the P3 more than the S9 mainly due to the UI; the P3 is much more organized and intuitive. Though, with the addition of the widgets on the S9 has made the home screen even more cumbersome, just from the few hours I have been using it. The problem is the S9’s widget screen is a toggle, widgets or icons, where as the P3 mashes both icons and widgets on multiple “desktops” you can flip though. But I digress, once both firmware’s become more stable look for a P3 vs S9 throwdown.

Samsung P3 to Get Firmware Update with Native Video Playback

samung p3 update Samsung P3 to Get Firmware Update with Native Video Playback

The US has yet to see the light of the P3 though it has been out for a few months in Korea and is available now in the UK. So we are in a way lucky that we will see a more feature filled and more refined P3. Journal Du Geek is reporting on the change log with the biggest news is native video playback of up to 800×600 resolutions natively. In addition on the video end they have added SMI format support and a mosaic video browser (video) similar to the S9. With this and added DNSe setting for movies.

There are some other small things like a drawing notepad similar to Paint, a Dictionary (only Korean at the moment), and also a new mirror album art now playing screen which does look very cool. More importantly they have increased the performance by 30%. Touch responsiveness was lacking in early versions I used at CES and it improved in the retail version, so this will bring it up to par with the best of the touch screen players.

My initial impressions of the P3 have been very good; however I previously questioned whether it could go head to head with the Cowon S9 since it lacked native video support. But with this soon to come update they will without a doubt be direct competitors. The touch player battle is heating up. Stay tuned to out P3 forum for its release sometime in early March

Dear Cowon, Don’t Release S9 Until Firmware is Stable

cowon firmware Dear Cowon, Don’t Release S9 Until Firmware is Stable

Cowon has always had a strong underground following for its very clean sound and great support for audio codecs. However, this underground support is slipping due to very poorly written firmware. Even in the past being a Cowon user have been bothered by numerous buggy and botched firmwares. I in fact have bricked an i7 as well as U3- bricked to the point of having to be returned to the manufacture to be fixed. Both of these happened while upgrading firmwares.

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Sansa Clip Firmware 01.01.30 Released

8gbclip Sansa Clip Firmware 01.01.30 Released

After we learned about the 8GB Sansa Clip a few days ago the crave for a new firmware and FLAC support has grown even stronger. Well people you can stop hoping, FLAC support is now available along with other updates through the 01.01.30FW.

Along with FLAC support the update brings general upgrades like better M3U playlist support and faster database updates. There are also a lot of bug fixes which alone should be worth the update. Along with the 01.01.30 firmware theres a 2.01.16 update apparently linked to “hardware revision 2″. No one really knows what this is at the moment but it might be the 8GB Clip. Hit the jump for a changelog on 01.01.30.

[ABi Forum Download Page|SanDisk Forum Official Release Thread]

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SanDisk Gives the Sansa Clip a Major Update

clip fw SanDisk Gives the Sansa Clip a Major Update

Having used a Cowon D2 for over a year I must admit that I was losing hope in the manufacturers’ ability to make useful firmware updates that actually fix stuff and add useful features instead of breaking what’s already there and adding “scicntific” calculators. Luckily it’s not just Samsung that knows how to do firmware and the latest update to the Sansa Clip shows that there is still hope if a player doesn’t have everything you want at release. Read on to find out what’s new in 1.01.29

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Zune Gets Gapless Playback + Zune 2.5 Update Cangelog

zune mp main Zune Gets Gapless Playback + Zune 2.5 Update Cangelog

The Zune team has been hard at work in the Zune headquarters (cleverly disguised as a library) lately and is now going live with the next milestone, version 2.5. It is a fairly substantial update adding to the social aspect, implementation of auto playlists, better meta data editing, and even a video section where TV shows can now be downloaded. The most interesting I find to be the Gapless playback, since it has always been such an elusive appearing only on a hand full of devices over the years. It may go unnoticed by some, but for the live music listener and or electronic mix fan it’s a feature we longed for.

For the details on all of the latest changes in software/firmware version 2.5 check below for a quick look list and screen shots of the software that should be live in a few hours.

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Reminder: The Samsung P2 Still Pwns

samsung p2 pwns Reminder: The Samsung P2 Still Pwns

When I went to CES I carried a bag filled with the latest MP3 players. At various dinners and events I would pull out this magical bag of MP3 players for show and tell. It is one thing to read users’ reactions to MP3 player, but to be able to put one in their hands is when you really get quality feedback. Out of all the players the one that never ceased to impress was the P2, especially when I showed them how I could dial their phone without my Treo in sight.

I like all of them, am still impressed (review) and even more so with the second firmware updated dubbed “BlueWave 2” which adds improved functionality, features, and games. It’s not over yet, there is still a BlueWave 3 on Samsung’s roadmap. Even though the firmware is “unfinished” it is still extremely stable, much like how Microsoft handles the Zune firmware updates- adding stable updates on top of stable firmwares.

We have a growing P2 community, so if you would like to get real consumer feedback, hacks, and latest info on the BlueWave updates; check out our very helpful Samsung P2 forum. Also compare the P2 to the Touch, it can definitely hold its own.

Sansa Connect Gets Video

sansa connect video Sansa Connect Gets Video

Here is an unexpected curve ball for you from the Sansa team. The newest firmware has added video and getting the new firmware is as easy as turning your Connect on for a few minutes and connecting to your wi-fi network. The Sansa Media Converter handles the conversion process just like it does with the View. Video is converted the 3GP format at 15 FPS common to mobile phones. The video does look choppy at the low frame rate, but still is pretty damn good for a player that was not intended to have video in the first place.

Check it out in action below.

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