mp3 posts on CNET - Page 196


B&O player does it again, but will it blend?

We can't imagine why, but some might say the world really doesn't need another MP3 player. But Bang & Olufsen rarely seems to play by conventional rules--or wisdom.

True to form, the high-end company has taken yet another unexpected turn. The "BeoSound 6" is surprisingly simple, as Engadget rightly observes, given the B&O reputation for flamboyance in its various products. But sometimes, less is more: As evidenced by the "BeoSound 2," unconventional form doesn't necessarily translate to exceptional quality.

The BeoSound 6 is nevertheless sleekly designed with its silver casing, spare … Read more

Owl names that tune and matches more to it

Owl Music Search is a cool tool that was spotlighted at a Creative Commons Salon last night. The potentially endangered Pandora and recommend which music you'll like by matching text descriptions of albums, artists and songs. But Owl analyzes the actual waveforms of music files and matches them to similar tunes, many of which have Creative Commons licenses.

When I uploaded Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah," Owl dug up 44 tracks by Loretta Lynn, Outkast, the Rolling Stones, Marilyn Manson and others, highlighting snippets of their songs that resembled parts of "Hallelujah." Owl has … Read more

MP3 concept: Proud would Yoda be

Why is it that the best designs almost always seem to be just concepts? Oh right, they don't have to work. Still, that won't stop us from admiring this lighted, cylindrical MP3 player, which looks more like a Lightsaber than a music gadget. (There's no reason, of course, it can't be both.)

Yoda references notwithstanding, the "Musipen" envisions other interesting features, such as navigation by twisting knobs on either end to display information on a wrap-around screen, according to Tech Digest. This last idea might actually be possible soon enough with new technology like … Read more

Attack of the giant fuzzy phone speakers

With Caroline McCarthy on tough assignment at E3 all week, we've been having a field day poaching on some of her favorite topics. We're talking pillows specifically and, better still, ones in the kind of obscene neon colors she so loves.

These phone-shaped music pillows, for instance, connect to any MP3 player for direct eardrum-shattering pleasure while maintaining a suitably cheesy look. (The player can be kept snugly in a mesh sleeve at one end of the giant fuzz-bound receiver.)

As Shiny Shiny astutely observes, these items are being marketed for for kids, but we all know better. … Read more

iLoad now rips DVDs direct to iPod. iPhone incompatible.

I wouldn't be surprised if you haven't heard of the Wingspan iLoad. Until recently, the product's only claim to fame was that it enabled you to rip CDs directly to your iPod without having to involve your computer. It was a handy tool for iTunes-haters and Luddites, but at $300 it wasn't a terribly compelling product. Just this past month, however, Wingspan published a firmware update that allows the iLoad to rip any DVD movie directly to an iPod. We've tested it, and it works (although not with the iPhone). In fact the video quality … Read more

Update: Rhapsody's coming to a Clix near you

Update: I just got word from iRiver that--unlike with the Sansa-Rhapsody deal--you will not need to buy a new 2G Clix in order to enjoy the Rhapsody DNA experience. Current owners of the player will get access to a free firmware update, which is expected to become available on the iRiver Web site sometime in July. Very nice.

This morning, iRiver officially announced a partnership with Rhapsody that optimizes the second-generation Clix for use with the music service. Although the player was already compatible with subscription tracks from on-the-go services (Rhapsody included), it now includes Rhapsody DNA. This new software … Read more

Become an MP3 master with Audacity

With professional music software selling for hundreds of dollars, finding a comparable freeware program is no small potatoes. Audacity is an impressive open-source audio editor that has upped its own ante in the new beta version, Audacity 1.3. If you're attuned to the basics of fading and trimming, this guide urges you on the next step of your journey, mastering MP3 files for Web publishing, cell phone ringtones, and podcasts. Here are a few pointers.

If you haven't yet, download the suite of Windows plug-ins from the Linux Audio Developer's Simple Plugin API (LADSPA). When using plug-ins, remember to select the section of track you wish to affect before opening the tool. Also, if you're planning to make ringtones, check out the special tips at the end of this article.… Read more

Sweet deal of the day

Yesterday, DAPreview reported some astonishing new pricing for Creative's Zen V line of MP3 players. I headed over to Creative's U.S. site to investigate for myself and discovered that this is indeed a fact. Since the line's release in June of last year, the Zen Vs have dropped an average of 35 percent, while the Zen V Pluses have enjoyed a 22 percent to 43 percent price drop (depending on capacity). The big steal at the moment? The 4GB players, which clock in at $99.99 for the Zen V and $109.99 for the Zen V Plus. … Read more

Russian government shuts AllofMP3

The Russian government has agreed to shut down Web site AllofMP3, which offers downloadable MP3 songs for a significant discount--20 cents per song or less--compared with stores such as Apple's iTunes.

The site was controversial because it paid royalties to a Russian organization that was not recognized by the record industry. In 2005, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) filed suit in Russian court to shut the site down, but its request was denied by Russian prosecutors. Now, apparently under pressure from U.S. trade representatives, who are pressing for stricter copyright enforcement before agreeing to admit … Read more

Photos: RCA Pearl

Plug-in-style MP3 players--that is, those with the USB interface built right in--have been enjoying a bit of a renaissance lately, as evidenced by the recent release of the SanDisk Sansa Express. RCA has now joined the trend with the Pearl, one of three players in the company's new Gem line. Like the Express, the Pearl is also aimed squarely at the budget-conscious, with 1GB and 2GB versions retailing for $39 and $48, respectively. Click the pic to see the Pearl in glorious detail, or head over to CNET to read the review.