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Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
2017-08-21, 21:53
Post: #11
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
As mentioned above, I have been advocating the return of Jukebox since its demise over 18 months ago. I have found an app for my wife's iPad called 8player which she has learned to use, to allow her to get music out the DS. She would prefer Jukebox, but we are not holding our breath. Interestingly, my son owns a Naim Unite one box system and when she goes to his flat to do his cleaning (don't ask...), she can use it with no trouble at all. He has a few of her albums on his USB drive and she can play them very easily. It also has Bluetooth and she can play her music from her phone. She often asks, why does my hi-fi not have Bluetooth? Naim certainly seem to have connectivity sorted and their iOS app is way ahead of Kinsky. Simple will always triumph over complicated.

I said it at the time, that I felt Linn ditching Jukebox was a big mistake and I may yet be proved right. It was not perfect, but a replacement should have been in place before it was pulled.

I am currently contemplating an upgrade before Christmas and an AkurateDSM is my first choice. However, due to no new Jukebox on the horizon, I may consider the new Naim Atom systems. I will probably audition both, and if it is a close run thing sound wise, I will probably go with the one with best connectivity (guess who that will be).

Bill.

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2017-08-22, 16:33
Post: #12
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
I just can't get my head around this - for me the DSM ticks every major box except that I am not able to browse my library just using the remote. "Just" copy Naim's approach with the ND5 XS or NDX, or even Onkyo's single text line browsing (which also works). For me a feature mix of both would be best for me...who would I have to contact at Linn? Or is it best to go via my dealer?
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2017-08-22, 21:13 (This post was last modified: 2017-08-22 21:14 by DavidHB.)
Post: #13
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
(2017-08-22 16:33)sunshine Wrote:  I just can't get my head around this - for me the DSM ticks every major box except that I am not able to browse my library just using the remote. "Just" copy Naim's approach with the ND5 XS or NDX, or even Onkyo's single text line browsing (which also works). For me a feature mix of both would be best for me...who would I have to contact at Linn? Or is it best to go via my dealer?

I don't want to be discouraging, but I don't think there's anywhere to go on this. Linn's products are designed in a particular way; not only are they using a different protocol to the products you mention, but the hardware (in particular, I guess, the display) would probably need to be different as well. It is at least arguable that the alternative products have been designed in that particular way because of the limitations of the protocol they are using. Linn chose to get round that problem by re-designing the protocol (and then doing the right thing and making the new version open source).

If Linn had seen a market or product development reason to cater for your specific requirement, they would have done so by now. If you contact them (you can always get in touch with the Linn helpline), you will almost certainly be told the same thing, albeit perhaps a little less baldly than I have expressed it. If I'm wrong, and they tell you that on device control point functionality is something that they are considering for the future, I shall be more than happy to eat humble pie ...

Of course, it is a pity when these ergonomic issues become deal-breakers for people like you and billzab, because you like the products in other respects. And while I can ask (very gently Smile) whether this really does have to be a deal breaker for you, I fully respect the fact that your priorities are yours alone to determine.

David

Main system: [Basik/Basik+/K5/Lejonklou Gaio >][Roksan Kandy Mk III >] KEDSM > Akurate Exaktbox 10/1 > Linn Silvers> A4200 x 2 and A2200 > K600 > Akubariks
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2017-08-23, 06:46
Post: #14
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
I think the main reason is that the previous implementation of Jukebox was codewise very incompatible with the redesign of Davaar.
When you use Kazoo or another control point, the communication works as follows:
control point asks for list of albums, tracks, whatever from the music server.
the user selects a shortlist of that and sends that shortlist to the DS.
The DS asks the first couple of seconds of music from the first tracks and starts playing.
It than asks for the next couple of seconds, etc. etc. etc.

If you want remote controlled jukebox functionality, the DS suddenly has to do a lot more work. It needs to be able to ask the music server for a list of all albums and tracks, it needs to be able to browse through that, update the display, update the shortlist and continue playing all the time.

It's quite a large project to programme and usually people who are good at low level programming are terrible with user-interaction programming and vice versa.
I can imagine that Linn doesn't have 1 or 2 employees on a shelf somewhere to get this done anytime soon. Not with all the work that needs to be done with implementing new filters for speakers, Katalyst DACs and Exakt Surround.

Linn will never compromise quality improvements over usability, not while there is a perfectly acceptable way of controlling the device. As long as you will find features as the possibility to disable HDMI in DSMs because of a slight difference in performance, they will always postpone the new Jukebox for something quality related.
Linn is an engineering company, dedicated to quality.

Personally that suits me fine but I do see the drawbacks too. I don't see them changing that anytime soon though. It is how it is.

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2017-08-23, 09:13
Post: #15
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
(2017-08-23 06:46)Tin Wrote:  I think the main reason is that the previous implementation of Jukebox was codewise very incompatible with the redesign of Davaar.

While this is true (and Linn have said so on several occasions), it is only fair to reiterate that, while this explains billzab's problem, it doesn't explain sunshine's issue. That comes down to your

(2017-08-23 06:46)Tin Wrote:  I do see the drawbacks too. I don't see [Linn] changing that anytime soon though. It is how it is.

Linn can be pretty pig-headed about things at times, but in this case there is some justification. They have had the same design approach since they first introduced streamers in 2007 (ahead of the market, in which they still have a significant place). They explicitly prefer open systems, whereas the market 'herd' runs after the closed system which is DLNA. They are an engineering company, and prefer (sometimes unconventional) engineering solutions to problems. So their products are never going to suit everyone. As you say, that's how it is.

David

Main system: [Basik/Basik+/K5/Lejonklou Gaio >][Roksan Kandy Mk III >] KEDSM > Akurate Exaktbox 10/1 > Linn Silvers> A4200 x 2 and A2200 > K600 > Akubariks
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2017-08-23, 10:27
Post: #16
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
David, Tin - I appreciate your thorough thoughts. I do like Linn's overall approach: no CD players anymore, no preamps anymore - Linn gets rid of the old stuff and embraces the new world. And sure it won't please everyone.

But I think that my need is a very basic functionality which - again from my view - should be available (knowing that such a feature won't be implemented in a couple of weeks). At the same time I am fully aware that I am only one single potential customer for them - in the end they need to make profit.

Linn's statement (if I recall correctly) "if it sounds better, it is better", could and should also be transferred to usability. The end user does not care about how it is technologically implemented.


(2017-08-22 21:13)DavidHB Wrote:  Of course, it is a pity when these ergonomic issues become deal-breakers for people like you and billzab, because you like the products in other respects. And while I can ask (very gently Smile) whether this really does have to be a deal breaker for you, I fully respect the fact that your priorities are yours alone to determine.

Very true - I will contact Linn and ask them about my issue. Based on their feedback I can make an educated decision what to do. That's all I can do.
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2017-08-23, 11:10 (This post was last modified: 2017-08-23 11:53 by DavidHB.)
Post: #17
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
(2017-08-23 10:27)sunshine Wrote:  But I think that my need is a very basic functionality which - again from my view - should be available (knowing that such a feature won't be implemented in a couple of weeks). At the same time I am fully aware that I am only one single potential customer for them - in the end they need to make profit.

Just so. And while this forum is not necessarily representative of Linn's customer base, I do not recall any previous request for what you regard as 'basic functionality'. I do however recall comments to the effect that browsing the library using the remote and the player display is a clumsy and unsatisfactory way of doing things. I'm not in a position to offer a view of my own, as my Linn streamers are the only ones I have owned.

However I would say that, irrespective of whether control point functions should be built into Linn DS/DSMs, the OpenHome method of doing things is far preferable to 'basic' UPnP, and it is a pity that OpenHome has not gained more traction than it has. That I believe, is the effect of the DLNA juggernaut in the marketplace, combined with the instinctive dislike that some influential companies have of anything that is not closed and proprietary.

(2017-08-23 10:27)sunshine Wrote:  Linn's statement (if I recall correctly) "if it sounds better, it is better", could and should also be transferred to usability. The end user does not care about how it is technologically implemented.

That's not necessarily the way Linn see it. Their products are not completely geeky, or most of us would not have bought them in the first place. But, as I said, Linn have a certain tendency to be pig-headed, and they have been known to draw technological lines in the sand (their lack of support for both USB and the DSD format being well-known examples) which they simply will not cross. Whether meeting your requirement represents one of those lines in the sand I just don't know. I suspect, in line with the comments Tin made a few posts back, that they believe they have met the requirement in the way that users generally will prefer.

David

Main system: [Basik/Basik+/K5/Lejonklou Gaio >][Roksan Kandy Mk III >] KEDSM > Akurate Exaktbox 10/1 > Linn Silvers> A4200 x 2 and A2200 > K600 > Akubariks
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2017-08-23, 11:48 (This post was last modified: 2017-08-23 11:49 by timster (RadiatorCatHammock).)
Post: #18
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
I have a Denon which is very clunky to browse using the remote. But then again so was Jukebox. They said the replacement will be better, when they get round to it.

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2017-08-23, 12:31
Post: #19
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
(2017-08-23 11:10)DavidHB Wrote:  
(2017-08-23 10:27)sunshine Wrote:  But I think that my need is a very basic functionality which - again from my view - should be available (knowing that such a feature won't be implemented in a couple of weeks). At the same time I am fully aware that I am only one single potential customer for them - in the end they need to make profit.

Just so. And while this forum is not necessarily representative of Linn's customer base, I do not recall any previous request for what you regard as 'basic functionality'. I do however recall comments to the effect that browsing the library using the remote and the player display is a clumsy and unsatisfactory way of doing things. I'm not in a position to offer a view of my own, as my Linn streamers are the only ones I have owned.

However I would say that, irrespective of whether control point functions should be built into Linn DS/DSMs, the OpenHome method of doing things is far preferable to 'basic' UPnP, and it is a pity that OpenHome has not gained more traction than it has. That I believe, is the effect of the DLNA juggernaut in the marketplace, combined with the instinctive dislike that some influential companies have of anything that is not closed and proprietary.

(2017-08-23 10:27)sunshine Wrote:  Linn's statement (if I recall correctly) "if it sounds better, it is better", could and should also be transferred to usability. The end user does not care about how it is technologically implemented.

That's not necessarily the way Linn see it. Their products are not completely geeky, or most of us would not have bought them in the first place. But, as I said, Linn have a certain tendency to be pig-headed, and they have been known to draw technological lines in the sand (their lack of support for both USB and the DSD format being well-known examples) which they simply will not cross. Whether meeting your requirement represents one of those lines in the sand I just don't know. I suspect, in line with the comments Tin made a few posts back, that they believe they have met the requirement in the way that users generally will prefer.

David
Being an engineer myself, I don't see it as being pig-headed per se, but outside of semantics, usability is the first victim in Scotland when another feature begs for attention.

The amount of engineers and technicians on these forums are very high, meaning that quite a large proportion of Linns customer base appreciates their approach.

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2017-08-23, 15:05 (This post was last modified: 2017-08-23 15:14 by Briain.)
Post: #20
RE: Browsing the audio library using only the DSM's display and remote?
A big vote for Jukebox from me! Linn certainly did state their firm intention to resurrect Jukebox and I can't wait for that to happen as I see it as being an absolutely essential facility; below explains why I think that way:

My 84 year old mother has a MDSI based system and is now getting quite daunted at the prospect of using Kinsky (she has forgotten how to drive it and it would be quite a stressful process to re-learn it). On that subject, I wouldn't dream of even trying to show her how to drive Kazoo - she'd just tell me to stick the whole lot onto eBay; it's not far off that with Kinsky, at the moment - so that is another reason why Jukebox's timely reappearance would be massively appreciated by myself.

I assume that the Linn folks must be working on something complex, as they haven't been as prominent on the forum over the past while; if so, that would maybe explain why Jukebox (and some other requests that have been acknowledged - as cool ideas - and thus logged via the ticket system) have not yet been concluded. Of course, it could also be that someone has had their head down and been furiously working on a new version of Jukebox, and simply that it would not be a good idea to announce it until it has been completed (to at least a beta+ level of robustness).

As I say though, whilst Kinsky Jukebox might not have been the first choice for many (and I can see why) there are usage cases where it should be considered as an essential feature, so really I do hope that it does re-appear as it will mean my mum can start to use her system.

Bri

PS I have a bedroom DS system and would like to use an IR remote to select albums (with the Jukebox numbers being on a printed list) as it's just far less hassle than dealing with a tablet, so I'm not just wanting it to help with my mother's system; I want to use it myself, too. Smile

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