Topic: Infocast 8" Black Friday sold out online, sold out in my local stores
'Guess I should have got up earlier!
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'Guess I should have got up earlier!
(answering my own post) I checked back a few times during the day. Local stock appeared briefly, and now can be ordered online $99.
Is there a good compare somewhere on the differences between the Insignia Infocast and the Sony Dash? With both on sale this weekend, I'm just wondering if the Sony is worth $30 over the infocast. My friend google isn't finding be any real user compares of the two..... maybe mr. youtube will find me some
BTW - I'm looking for a "toy" for my 10yo daughter who is into music, so I like the Pandora access (and I guess internet radio). Does anyone feel any of the other features would be good for such a child, or is Dad's interest in playing with the latest technology clouding my judgement??
I don't have a Dash, but I do have a Infocast 8" and Chumby One. The software is slightly different, and I have read the Dash has similar differences, largely around licensing for music content.
Infocast music via Pandora and Shoutcast work fine. Local playing of music from USB is easy. Speakers are not great, volume control only via touch screen (no eternal volume control). Plays MP3's i did not try or check other formats (AAC, FLAC, etc). You can play music while Apps are running which is nice. Infocast does not have the same Audio sources as the One (e.g. My Streams) and I have not tried apps like the Squeezebox, Ipod control, etc yet.
I would guess this would be just fine for a 10yo, and Facebook, Photos, and more make it better. Who knows, maybe she will start to read the NYTimes!
I picked up the 3.5" infocast today, and have been playing with it for a very short time. It's working great for music (have my klipsch spreakers plugged in), which is likely my daughter's main interest. I also have one of the last 8" BB8's waiting for me at BestBuy, so I'll be able to decide which (if any) one of these to keep.
The larger screen would be nice, and $30 more isn't much - however I know the 3.5" is more of a "true" chumby, running the stock software, and obviously having better support for my questions as I figure this thing out. And of course the clock/alarm works better
We'll see - Dad will play with both this week (not to mention the Squeezbox radio that's on its way too!).
I'm going to have to see what happens if I plug an iPod into this thing - seems I've seen talk of apps to control it, which would be nice too....
The Infocast 3.5 does not support the iPod.
Bummer - but the chumby devices do, eh?
Do you know the big differences between the 3.5" and 8" Insignia devices in regards to features? I haven't picked up my BB8 yet to compare, but looking on the Insignia site, it looks like it has fewer music options. I was able to point the 3.5" to a URL source today, and was excited I could get the live feed of TWIT (although my daughter won't care!). Looking at the 8" manual, it doesn't seem to have this option - and in fact has a lot fewer music options - looks like Pandora, Shoutcast, and Blue Octy are it, but I imagine they're enough. Just trying to decide if the +$30 for the 8" model is a good move, and what I'd give up over the 3.5".
BTW Duane, your timely responses are impressive!
Well, the chumby devices support a subset of iPods (it doesn't support iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, and may not work with some of the later firmware updates). In general, the iPo support is hit-and-miss - it's not "official", so we're constantly playing catchup as Apple modifies their software, which they're doing more and more.
Apple is going more and more proprietary, even to the extent of requiring that the device be charged with an official charger. We've considered dropping iPod support in all of our products, but have left what we have in the product for those people for whom it works.
The 3.5" definitely supports more options for music.
LOL.... plugged my iPod Classic in, and the 3.5" infocast is treating it like a storage device. Brings up the folder structure, which of course means nothing. I told it to play all, shuffled..... and it's playing all, shuffled! Of course this doesn't really work as far as controlling what you're listening to. I'm able to go into the folder structure and play individual songs, but of course the filenames are junk, and no ID3 information.
BTW, my wife thinks this is too complicated for my daughter, and we should just get a mini-shelf system with an iPod dock But I'm enjoying playing/learning!!
Right, that's how iPods are supported on those devices. On chumby-branded device, there's an extra program that reads the database that iTunes creates to present a more appropriate UI.
Decided the 3.5" is going to my daughter for her birthday. Demonstrated it to my 12yo, and he thought it was pretty cool! Last night I instead used my just delivered squeezebox radio for my clock/radio....and I missed my pseudo-chumby! I may have to pick up another 3.5" infocast if they every go to $69 again.
BTW, the squeezebox radio is pretty nice - tons and tons of radio options...
Just saw the 3.5" on sale at bestbuy.com for $49!!
... Last night I instead used my just delivered squeezebox radio for my clock/radio....and I missed my pseudo-chumby! ... BTW, the squeezebox radio is pretty nice - tons and tons of radio options...
Does the One or the Infocast Chumby have a squeezebox client written for them?
BTW, if you are running a squeezebox server, there are open source client projects all over the place. You don't have to buy a squeezebox client. However, for the best experience, I would recommend it.
My Insignia does list Squeezebox under music options, so I would say yes.
I have not installed the Squeezebox server software on my iMac. I guess I'm wondering if it's something I want to do? More from the standpoint of being a running resource on my main computer. Does it still work when the mac goes to sleep? It is an i7, but still.....
I've got a couple XP boxes just sitting there. I suppose I could always use one of them to run the Squeezebox Server software. Of course now I've got to copy all my music files over to it. Which suggests I should move my shared media to a NAS!
And then there's the fact that I'm not really sure I want/need access to all my music via the squeezebox or insignia. I'd rather just use Pandora or Slacker....
Hum, no simple answer goes, er, un-questioned...
So, are you sure it is a Squeezecenter client that can play music? It is possible to create clients simply to control the play back of music on another client.
No, if the server PC is off the Squeezecenter server is unavailable. But some Squeezecenter clients can, on their own, go out and find radio stations and the like.
I have a computer dedicated to serving up media and backup space which runs 24/7. Putting a Squeezecenter server on that was simple. This is one of the main reasons I am interested in these Infocast clients that are on sale. If I could use them to access this media it would be super.
Squeezecenter is not a single program. It need a PERL interpreter and relies heavily on MySQL to store all kinds of information regarding your music collection and play lists. However, these are common, used by many other programs and are perhaps already part of your regular MAC installed software. This is also the reason that Squeezecenter is difficult to port to small / low-power platforms. The lowest and smallest I believe is the SLUG or the Linksys NSLU2. I doubt you could port Squeezecenter to a low power Infocast box that you could leave on all the time.
Well, the NSLU2 is far lower performance device than the Infocast.
The NSLU2 used a 266MHz ARM, vs the 800MHz ARM in the Infocast.
The NSLU2 had 32MB of RAM, while the Infocast has 128MB
The MSLU2 had 8MB of NAND, while the Infocast has 2GB of SDCard.
It's quite possible to port a full Perl and MySQL to the Infocast, and if those are the main prerequisites for this server, if should be just a matter of some porting effort.
This thread has been hijacked hasn't it. Ok, in for penny - pound - how ever it's said... Besides, Black Friday was last week's news.
Well, I could argue being a NAS, the NSLU2 could have a 1TB HDD available to store all my music and data base information. Something neither Infocast has AFAIK.
Also, I'll admit I haven't kept up with the SLUG project. Last I heard they had to drastically change Squeezecenter to get it to fit and/or work in the NSLU2. I might even guess the latest Squeezecenter is not compatible.
All in all, unless there was a really compelling reason, I would option to put Squeezecenter on a regular PC and run that 24/7. Ideally, it would be a fan-less small low power PC. Any should do as long as your Squeezecenter clients can accept the music format as it exists on the HDD. Otherwise Squeezecenter will pull in transcoding software and transcode music on the fly. This might over burden some small servers. I'm not sure, but would assume the NSLU2 could not or should not do this. That is, you would have to store all music in a format compatible with your clients.
As for the Infocast - I would be interested in how complete the existing Squeezecenter clients are. Squeezecenter has been around for a while (AKA Slimserver) and supports several different protocols over the ethernet. Mainly because newer client units obsoleted the older communication protocols. You should be able to receive the music, control the play back and receive music meta-data which include album covers. Tricky bits include maintaining, monitoring, controlling and providing the server feed back regarding the local music buffer. It is rather well thought out as it has been around to mature for the better part of a decade in, of all places, the open source community.
I would also be interested in by passing all of the Infocast analog circuitry preferring either an electrical or optical SPDIF output. Has anyone done that yet?