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Unofficial VGP-XL1B2 Thread - Page 3

post #61 of 1651
Well I found the issue. For some reason MCE in Vista only wants to play nice with DVD's.

Once I goto DVD library, then MC says it found new media, and begins searching.

Once it locates all the CD's it shows 100 CD's but in the "MY Changer" area they all have the same CD name. I tell it to rip, and after it rips the music all the names, and cover art appear in the My Music section.



Pyro,

To install I set it to XP compatibility and then right clicked the install to "Run As Administrator"

However, I think I may have copied the software from the CD to the hard drive to install it.

Dave B
post #62 of 1651
I've got the sucker working in both Vista & MCE '05. First and foremost though, the collateral damage: It cracked a CD which was loaded into the machine in what I can only assume was an improper fashion. And I mean cracked a quadrant clean out of the cd, in two pieces. I've figured out a reliable method of loading them properly now (1 CD too late, unfortunately.)

That incident aside, I've been able to load, play and batch rip CDs & load and play DVDs in both OSes. You are able to manage your discs, CDs included in Vista MCE - it is just the location of the manage discs feature that seems odd. In Vista, you need to go to the TV & DVDs function, where you will find "Manage Discs" within the DVD Library (above the library, not below it). I haven't tried burning anything within it yet, or keeping Game CDs/DVDs in there for accessing without having to load them in the single optical drive per game play.

Per Dwight2001's complaint, the cover art of DVDs and their poor individualization (particularly amongst box sets, RE: LOTR Extended Editions, etc.) is a chafe, but I figure if I edit them to be discerned by title once, all will be well (unless they are unloaded and then reloaded, in which case I presume I'd have to re-edit them again. On some level, CD cover art is susceptible to the same thing, though, whether MCE or WMP 10 or 11.

If I could only get the Sigmatel to output digitally with the Windows UAA drivers in Vista through the two digital outputs to my two rooms, I'd use it as the default OS already.

Long story short, for 299$ after MIR, this was a worthwhile purchase for me for the ripping aspect; and now that I know it will work in Vista, I'll be hanging onto it, if only to allow my daughter full time access to all her Baby Einstein DVDs without the risk of fingerprints and worse wrecking them. Sony will hopefully upgrade their software with an update that will bring the apps in line with the new Segoe font for the UI in Vista (currently defaults to a non-Aliased Times New Roman - eesh - kinda Fugly) but functionally it does enough that I'm already aware of & have confirmed to make it worth keeping.

Overall: thumbs up
post #63 of 1651
I can also confirm that it is working well in vista. I did have problems with it when using RC2 build 5744. What it was doing then was not showing the correct CD information for audio cds, it would just show the information for the first one. Also media player/MCE would not recognise when a new cd was inserted without closing out and reopening the program. Both those problems have been fixed in vista build 5840 which i installed tonight. It is showing disk information correctly and also ripping cds with no problems at all

pyro_
post #64 of 1651
I just got one from Amazon and it seems VERY slow ripping CDs to MP3. Just as a test I decided to rip in WMA and it seems to be ripping faster. Has anyone else noticed a slowdown to MP3? Could there be something else going on?
post #65 of 1651
Redondoman,

I may be mistaken but I believe that MP3 is more of a compressive format than WMA so ripping to the MP3 format probably uses more CPU power and System Resources.

Dwight2001
post #66 of 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dwight2001 View Post

Redondoman,

I may be mistaken but I believe that MP3 is more of a compressive format than WMA so ripping to the MP3 format probably uses more CPU power and System Resources.

Dwight2001

I just woke up and it wouldn't rip to MP3 at all. This is on a new computer so maybe the MP3 codec is not installed. I will try and rip to MP3 via the Windows Media Player and switch computers later to verify. Does anyone know where I should go to d/l the MP3 codec?
post #67 of 1651
Windows Media Player 10 includes an MP3 encoder out-of-the-box. Assuming you are on a MCE 2005 w/ UR2 you should WMP 10 installed.

Chris
post #68 of 1651
Hmmm. Has everyone else been able to rip MP3 OK? It rips WMA Lossless fine. I guess I'll put a call into to Sony tech support today?
post #69 of 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisL01 View Post

Windows Media Player 10 includes an MP3 encoder out-of-the-box. Assuming you are on a MCE 2005 w/ UR2 you should WMP 10 installed.

Chris

It was the MP3 Encoder, WMP 10. Not sure why it was not installed, but I'll d/l from somewhere.
post #70 of 1651
So how long would it take to load 200 cds into this? I have around 500 CDs I need to rip to WMA lossless and 128kbs CBR WMA(128kbs is for a Zune player I'm getting). I was going to use music shifter(I've used it for around 100Cds so far) but then I ran into this thread. It's only $300 dollars now after rebate from Amazon so I figure I could get it instead of using the Music shifter service(which would run around $500 after shipping costs). But I'm wondering how long it will actually take me to load and unload all 200 discs?
post #71 of 1651
Loading mine up did not take too long. The part that took a while was while it was going through all the discs in MCE that took a few hours.
post #72 of 1651
Not to be a smart ass, but the load time is completely dependent on your ability to work with the slot loading system. I believe the machine allows an approximately 10 second window per disc when it's in "Load All" mode. If nothing is loaded into the player within that 10 seconds, it assumes you are finished, and will then prompt for a scan of the new discs (if you are in disc manager within MCE). You can always say no, then load more.

I know first hand it'll wreck a disc (or maybe more) if you bung up the loading process. It cracked a Police CD I had loaded in there - cracked a 1/4 of it right off. The system I came up with which I'm pretty comfortable with now is to prepare the discs you're looking to load in advance.
  1. Gather them in your left hand, all labels up, same as if they were on a spindle.
  2. Set the Changer in motion for the loading process.
  3. When the slot opens for the first disc, slide it in about 3/4's of the way until you feel it resting on the internal mechanism; release it and wait for the mechanism to let it slide the rest of the way into the tray. The slot will then close.
  4. Wait and listen for the tray to rotate to the next open slot, and reopen for another disc.
  5. Rinse, lather & repeat

An earlier poster suggested loading no more than ~5 or so at a time. Until you are comfortable loading it, this isn't a bad way to go. Once you ARE comfortable loading it though, the above system is limited only by the number of discs you can hold in your hand at one time.

Once completely loaded, wait for MCE/WMP to ID the discs, then initiate the ripping process, and go to sleep. I found that WMA Lossless took ~6-8 minutes per CD on a C2D 6600 onto a RAID 5 array. You do the math multiplied by 200... YMMV.

One note: I found the Changer refused to rip a number of discs that eventually did rip, but they required reloading & re-identification in some instances (about 10% initial rejection rate per batch). Frustrating, but still better than ripping them all by hand one disc at a time.

Even with the 1 disc it ate and all the lousy identification of the DVDs due to AMG's ID database, I'm leaning towards keeping it. Maybe Amazon will credit me for the "Ghost in the Machine" disc... (Irony or Serendipity that it shattered that one?)
post #73 of 1651
I timed it,

If you have your CD's in your hand you can load a CD about every 3-4 seconds.

To unload it you can unload a CD/DVD every 6-7 seconds.


You have to just push the LOAD or EJECT button twice and it will load or eject as fast as you feed or remove a CD.

Once it is loaded the ID process does take a while -- I didn't time that.

I ripped my CD's as WM Pro / Lossless and got a rip time of about 5 mins per CD.


Dave B
post #74 of 1651
Oops

I forgot -- I have a 400 DISC Sony CD jukebox in the same rack, so I was pulling the cd's out of the Jukebox in groups of 10-15 to load, and then slid them in one at a time when they were ejected, and was able to keep up with the speed of the VGP.

Dave B
post #75 of 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by o2manyfish View Post

Oops

I forgot -- I have a 400 DISC Sony CD jukebox in the same rack, so I was pulling the cd's out of the Jukebox in groups of 10-15 to load, and then slid them in one at a time when they were ejected, and was able to keep up with the speed of the VGP.

Dave B


Dave B,

LOL, that's cheating. On another note, I wanted to bring to everyone's attention in this thread of a website which may be of interest. It's www.dvdxml.com It has probably the most extinsive listing of DVD xml files. I'm extremely interested in perhaps trying to download a xml file from this site to replace a "mistaken" xml that MCE supplied when loading a DVD into the XL1B2. In theory if you download the correct xml and rename it the same xml as what MCE named it, it should bring up the correct cover art at least. Perhaps the correct metadata also. I will let you guys know of my findings when I try it tonite.

Dwight2001
post #76 of 1651
Dwight -

Please do keep us posted. That would be a nice-to-know workaround (although it would still involve work on our part ). I don't now how MyMovies works with the VGP-XL1B, but I know that the gentleman who has coded it is getting very close (fingers crossed) to a 2.1 release of this app that is Vista ready. My understanding is that it provides a much more robust and reliable front end to this changer. Robust and reliable identification of the DVDs present in it would be nice with no additional effort on our part (beyond loading them in).
post #77 of 1651
*Bad news*

I tried overwriting the "mistaken" xml file with one I downloaded from www.dvdxml.com and it did not work. I used for a test subject "Batman" (1989 - Michael Keaton version) because that was the most mistaken DVD I had in my collection. When I originally loaded it, it read as the "Best of Sci-Fi Collection". I had used the edit feature in MCE to rename it to "Batman". When I overwrote the xml with the one I downloaded it reverted back to the "Best of Sci-Fi Collection". This really p...ed me off since it was a great task in finding the exact xml file. Sorry guys but it didn't work.

Dwight2001
post #78 of 1651
Thanks for doing that digging, Dwight...
post #79 of 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by kevbrad66 View Post

P.S.: This sucker is LONG. Longer than it is wide! Be warned, as others have said.

Can someone post the actual dimensions of the unit? I can't seem to find that info on the Sony site.

Thanks
post #80 of 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by growler13 View Post

Can someone post the actual dimensions of the unit? I can't seem to find that info on the Sony site.

Thanks

Amazon.com Product Dimensions: 17.0 x 19.5 x 9.3 inches ; 31.4 pounds
post #81 of 1651
So has anyone been able to batch rip DVD's to the hard drive using

Powerfiles PowerTools software mentioned in this thread

or any other software?

Thanks,


Dave
post #82 of 1651
I'm having an occasional problem where the XL1B2 will fail to play a disc and if I tell it to Eject I get an error msg that MCE was unable to eject.

Anyone else have this problem and/or know a fix? I've tried rebooting, power cycling the PC and the changer. I've tried using the UNLOAD button on the changer. It never unloads the problem disc.

Is there any way to tell the changer/MCE to rediscover all the discs? (Short of UNloading them all and REloading them?)

Most of the time everything is fine. And of the discs this is happening to, they have all played fine in the past.

Thanks!
Ken
post #83 of 1651
Well, I got curious about the DVD that wouldn't eject and so took the cover off my XL1B. Sure enough the DVD had come out of its slot and was up on top of the other discs.

I was able to fix it. Man that changer is built like a tank! I watched it work for awhile with the cover off. It's only problem is that the turntable mechanism isn't quite smooth enough and the discs shake when in motion.

Overall though this thing is great so I got three more

I hooked up three of them, but the other two didn't work right and none of the DVD's from the first player showed up in MCE except the one in the drive.

So I called Sony support expecting the run around, but instead within 3 minutes I was getting expert help. David, the CSR talked me through updating the software and firmware on all three changers and made sure everything was working perfectly. Awesome support!

He also gave me a few MCE tips and gave me a link for a form to report coverart errors to AMG.

So anyway, now I have about 400 discs spread across 3 changers and all is working perfect.

Oh, I got the last three for $249 on closeout at Fry's.

The Sony CSR said they would be coming out with a new version that supported Bluray. I'm sure they won't be $249 and I got a cheap warranty that will replace any of my XL1B's (if they break) with whatever is current. So with any luck (bad luck ) I'll end up trading in one of my XLB1's for a BD changer.

Ken
post #84 of 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by KenLand View Post


So with any luck (bad luck ) I'll end up trading in one of my XLB1's for a BD changer.

Ken

Why would you trade one ?? you can daisy-chain up to 64 units together .. official only 5 but sony told me they tested up to 64 = 12800 discs
post #85 of 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by sky-chicken View Post

Why would you trade one ?? you can daisy-chain up to 64 units together .. official only 5 but sony told me they tested up to 64 = 12800 discs

Well, because the new ones will play Bluray and the current ones won't. Also, hopefully there will be other enhancements like more capacity, quieter operation, etc.

I figure if I get/build a Vista MCE with a HD-DVD drive and a Bluray changer I'd be pretty well set for awhile. With managed copy I should be able to rip my HD-DVDs to hardisk and put my BD and SD discs in my changers.

I wonder how many XL1B's are in use? I can't believe there isn't more buzz about them. It's incredibly cool having a scrolling wall of 400+ movies to choose from and no time consuming rip and no IT hassles maintaining an array.

Ken
post #86 of 1651
Kenland - I'm glad you found your disc intact; I wasn't so lucky. But they are cool. Personally I'm guessing you have these in a closet, cause I am still blown away by the size of them. I put mine in a 20.5 inch deep cabinet, and had to drill two 1" dia. holes to allow for the electrical cord & firewire. Can you let us know where the link to AMG's bad cover art form is?
post #87 of 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by KenLand View Post

Well, I got curious about the DVD that wouldn't eject and so took the cover off my XL1B. Sure enough the DVD had come out of its slot and was up on top of the other discs.

I was able to fix it. Man that changer is built like a tank! I watched it work for awhile with the cover off. It's only problem is that the turntable mechanism isn't quite smooth enough and the discs shake when in motion.

Overall though this thing is great so I got three more

I hooked up three of them, but the other two didn't work right and none of the DVD's from the first player showed up in MCE except the one in the drive.

So I called Sony support expecting the run around, but instead within 3 minutes I was getting expert help. David, the CSR talked me through updating the software and firmware on all three changers and made sure everything was working perfectly. Awesome support!

He also gave me a few MCE tips and gave me a link for a form to report coverart errors to AMG.

So anyway, now I have about 400 discs spread across 3 changers and all is working perfect.

Oh, I got the last three for $249 on closeout at Fry's.

The Sony CSR said they would be coming out with a new version that supported Bluray. I'm sure they won't be $249 and I got a cheap warranty that will replace any of my XL1B's (if they break) with whatever is current. So with any luck (bad luck ) I'll end up trading in one of my XLB1's for a BD changer.

Ken

I see the Sony site and firmware upgrade, but it says something about must be installed before rollup April 2006. Did you have to unistall it? What did they tell you to do besides d/l the update?
post #88 of 1651
I upgraded to the Vista RTM, and was happy to see that the Sony Changer, is detected by Media Center without having to load any drivers.

Dave B
post #89 of 1651
Hey Guys,

Heres that link to report errors in the AMG database.

http://www.allmovie.com/cg/avg.dll?p=avg&sql=78:

If it doesn't work from here:

Goto www.allmovie.com
scroll to bottom
click "Contact"
choose "Corrections/Additions" from the topic list

If you want to upgrade firmware I suggest you call the Sony support. There is one KB Hotfix you have to uninstall if you have it. (I didnt') Then you install two different patches the second of which updates the firmware after reboot. You have to have only the changer you're updating connected during the update.

Also, don't forget you can only put CD's in the first changer and the first changer needs to be the one with the lowest serial number.

I haven't had one problem since updating firmware and software.

Ken
post #90 of 1651
Received a newsletter that discusses the 2.11 release of My Movies.

> What's next?
>
> The next thing you will see will most likely be a release with folder monitoring and Sony XL1 and Niveus firewire changer support, and the ability to report disc information's to the "My Movies" web service to improve usability in the future.

Brian had indicated that support for the Sony XL1 series is coming.
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