New Shanling M0 - Tiny DAP for 109$

Discussion in 'General Product Announcements' started by Bina, Mar 29, 2018.

  1. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    @Thad E Ginathom - you know what? It is pretty sweet. Easily pocketable too. It's not perfect, but it's way better than I expected for the price and size.

    Edit: So far, I am enjoying Slow Min filter. It sounds big and warm, with really nice timbre and transients. Really easy to enjoy. I will see how that holds up with more challenging material.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2018
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  2. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    Did some comparisons between the M0, GOV2+ Infinity (2.1 firmware), and the ZX2 with the Andromedas and Blitzwolf. They all sound very good. The ZX2 can sometimes feel a bit sharp in the treble, and the M0 is the bassiest (this is with the apodizing fast 1 filter, I haven’t messed with the others). The GO seems the most balanced and smoothest. The rest really feels like splitting hairs. The M0 sounds good enough compared to the others that I’m not going to spend days exhaustively comparing them.

    I’m less impressed with this as a USB transport. It sounds totally fine—when it’s working. I found that with the Geek Out, if I plug the cable into the GO first, then the M0, the M0 will say “Audio Connected” but I get no sound. The DSD light on the GO will turn on and not turn off, even if I unplug the cable (all my files are FLAC). I have to turn the GO off and back on to turn the DSD light off. If I plug the cable into the M0 first, THEN the GO, the DSD light will still come on but once I hit play on the M0 it will go away and I’ll get music. @Bina is this the intended behavior of the device?

    Additionally, if I pause the music, unplug the cable to the GO, plug it back in, and hit play, it starts the song back at the beginning. I’m also wondering if this is intentional or not. I also seem to be getting random instances of the device disconnecting and reconnecting to the DAC. I get none of these behaviors when I plug the GO into my phone.

    Despite the quirks, I find the M0 to be very easy to listen to and generally easy to use. For $100 I’d recommend it to anyone who wants portable audio beyond their phone but doesn’t want to spend an arm and a leg on a DAP that essentially means carrying two phones. The M0 is easy to carry and sounds very good for portable use.
     
  3. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    I did get a nasty shock earlier- walking to the supermarket with the M0 on. Unfortunately, I have now heard its evil side.

    I cued up the original CD issue of "Under The Pink" by Tori Amos- an album that I know really well. The first track, "Pretty Good Year" suffered nasty sibliance and generally quite piercing and sharp highs. I tried the various slow filters to try and attenuate it, but no dice.

    I haven't tried to see if I can fix it with EQ yet, nor have I tried other IEMs than my trusty Martians. However, it was a nasty moment- the tone overall was quite brittle and piercing. This isn't the case on any of my other playback devices/chains- could be a bit of food for thought for those who hate sharp/glary treble.
     
  4. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    Well I see your problem, the M0 isn’t a CD player!

    But seriously I’ve got a copy of the first mastering of Under the Pink. I’ll add it to my sd card soon and test it out.
     
  5. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    Hey, I spent ages cutting it down to fit, too.
     
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  6. DigMe

    DigMe Geekus Imperator

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    Wish I had that album to hear it. I specifically tried some albums on mine that can trend towards similar with the wrong setup. Haven't caught anything so far.
     
  7. Bina

    Bina MOT - Shanling

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    Definitely report if you manage to find more. We are able to fix lots of things with our software team, but repeating the problems is often the hardest and crucial part.

    To glass protector, there was some talk here how it doesn't properly fit our angled glass. And also low volume sales on previous players(which had much bigger glass screens).

    It was error of our software team, in 2.0 we fix this and any future update will be manageable with exfat or NTFs card.



    Minimum slow is the preferred filter of our engineers and also stock setting.

    Pairing with GO - Honestly, on M0, everything is set up quite simply. On side of DACs it's more tricky and often it's question how their charging/USB power is set up. We are testing M0 primarily with Chord Mojo and iFI iDSD BL and some desktop DACs and we are getting good results with them. Unfortunately we are unable to test all DACs and some DAC have some strange demands we didn't predict.

    So I will say, it's good you figured out way around it.

    Regarding the song reset, I was told it has something to do buffer and changing from USB out to internal audio circuit.

    Also, we now have one engineer solely focusing on USB out, so we hope to have any quirks fixed over few firmware updates.




    And good news everyone, clip case should be coming sooner than we estimated ;)
     
  8. Bina

    Bina MOT - Shanling

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    Clip case is ready and starting to ship distributors this week :)

    06.jpg
    07.jpg
     
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  9. Ash1412

    Ash1412 Friend

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    I posted earlier asking about the filters on the m0 and it seems my post is gone. Can you give us some details about the filters Apodizing Fast 1/Fast 2, Corrected Min Fast and Brickwall? The min/linear phase slow/fast filters are understandable but the other 4 are confusing to me.
     
  10. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    Hey, @Bina - I have a question.

    My normal way of using a music player is to have it continue to the next album when the current one finishes. That's what I have my other DAP (a Sony) do, and how all my phone-based players behave.

    I can't see how to enable this behaviour on the M0 - where should I be looking, or failing that, who do you need to bribe to add it?
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2018
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  11. Bina

    Bina MOT - Shanling

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    Well, we have this implemented for the folder skip, need to add it to the albums. Thanks for reminder.
     
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  12. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    Oh, right- at least I didn't just fail to spot it! I look forward to seeing this in a firmware update soon.


    Next question- the big Shanling splash screen that pops up sometimes (the black and white one, not the coloured one shown at startup/shutdown)- it can't just be a busy screen, as it can usually be clicked away. Is there any way to disable or mitigate that?

    I was trying to show the UI to someone yesterday, and every time I tried to interact with it, I kept getting that splash screen rather than usable UI,. The person to whom I was trying to demo the unit just lost interest when the UI was being confusing and stroppy. I know it's a Shanling player, thanks- I went out of my way to buy it, I don't need reminding :)

    Sometimes it pops up when I do a failed swipe right to go back a UI layer, for example and doesn't clear until clicked away. It's irksome.

    Edit: I just pressed the crown once to turn the screen on, and got that splash screen and was totally unable to get past it, the UI was completely unresponsive. I had to turn the screen off and back on again before I could click it away. Total asspain.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2018
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  13. DigMe

    DigMe Geekus Imperator

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    @Kattefjaes I may be wrong but I think the splash screen might show up when there is no album art for the album that’s playing. I can test it later. It was confusing for me at first too but now it’s second nature. Just tap once to get the play screen.
     
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  14. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    Yeah, that makes sense, and I should have realised it. That said:
    • It needs to be possible to disable it, as it's an extra step that makes the UI a chore to use. If you don't want to see that screen, it just makes UI interaction slower and more irritating.
    • It needs to be more reliable when it is enabled, as when it doesn't work, it makes the UI genuinely unusable.
    It's possible that there was artwork in that track that it didn't know how to decode, or something, and it got freaked out. I don't know. If there's no artwork, maybe it shouldn't display a screen showing "no artwork", either.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2018
  15. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    Ok, here's an interesting one. Disk two of The Wall.

    In foobar 2000:
    [​IMG]

    In JRiver:
    [​IMG]

    On a Sony WM1A:
    [​IMG]

    ..and finally, on the Shanling M0:

    [​IMG]

    So why is the track order wrong on the Shanling? It's the same FLACs, with the same metadata in each case. It quite threw me when I was wandering around the supermarket, grabbing some bits for dinner, listening to an album that I knew really well, and.. that happened.

    I haven't noticed it doing this to anything else yet, but I don't know all albums quite as well as this one ;)
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2018
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  16. Elnrik

    Elnrik Super Friendly

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    AFAIK, there are a billion different ways to write metadata to files about track information, and not all players/programs read it the same. I'd think that would be the case here. Interested to see if my hypothesis is true though.
     
  17. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    Yes, that's why I included several other players, to make the point that it has worked in everything else for me. It was also fine in VLC, MPD+Cantata, LMS+Picoreplayer+Squeezer and every other player that I could find.

    FLAC has pretty well-defined tagging, and I am compressing and tagging them with the official FLAC encoder, so that does reduce the wiggle room considerably. We're not talking ID3 tags added by shonky crap like iTunes, but the actual reference encoder itself.

    I do it more or less like this:

    Code:
    FLAC.EXE -8 -V -T "ARTIST=%artist%" -T "TITLE=%title%" -T "ALBUM=%albumtitle%" -T "DATE=%year%" -T "TRACKNUMBER=%tracknr%" -T "GENRE=%genre%" -T "COMMENT=%comment%" -T "BAND=%albuminterpret%" -T "ALBUMARTIST=%albuminterpret%" -T "COMPOSER=%composer%" %haslyrics%--tag-from-file=LYRICS="%lyricsfile%"%haslyrics% -T "DISCNUMBER=%cdnumber%" -T "TOTALDISCS=%totalcds%" -T "TOTALTRACKS=%numtracks%" %hascover%--picture="%coverfile%"%hascover% %source% -o %dest%
    
    So there's something daft happening, at the very least. I will try and dump the metadata out, see if it has both FLAC tags and ID3 or something..

    Edit:

    There are no ID3 tags:
    Code:
    $ eyeD3 12\ The\ Trial.flac
    
    12 The Trial.flac       [ 29.25 MB ]
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    No ID3 v1.x/v2.x tag found!
    
    But here's the appropriate FLAC tagging:
    Code:
    $ metaflac --list --block-number=2 12\ The\ Trial.flac
    METADATA block #2
      type: 4 (VORBIS_COMMENT)
      is last: false
      length: 611
      vendor string: reference libFLAC 1.3.1 20141125
      comments: 20
        comment[0]: TOTALDISCS=1
        comment[1]: TOTALTRACKS=13
        comment[2]: TOOL NAME=Media Center
        comment[3]: TOOL VERSION=22.0.108
        comment[4]: REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_GAIN=+0.61 dB
        comment[5]: PEAK LEVEL (SAMPLE)=-1.3 dB; -1.3 Left; -1.6 Right
        comment[6]: DISCNUMBER=1
        comment[7]: VOLUME LEVEL (R128)=-4.3926801681518554
        comment[8]: REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_PEAK=0.861000
        comment[9]: DYNAMIC RANGE (DR)=13
        comment[10]: GENRE=Progressive Rock
        comment[11]: TRACKNUMBER=12
        comment[12]: ARTIST=Pink Floyd
        comment[13]: PEAK LEVEL (R128)=-1.3 dBTP; -1.3 Left; -1.6 Right
        comment[14]: BPM=75
        comment[15]: DYNAMIC RANGE (R128)=10.9059600830078124
        comment[16]: ALBUM=The Wall (Disc 2)
        comment[17]: VOLUME LEVEL (REPLAYGAIN)=0.6073200106620789
        comment[18]: DATE=1979
        comment[19]: TITLE=The Trial
    
    Looks like JRMC rewrote the tags at some point, but they're fine, in a form that makes sense to the Xiph stuff and the other players. Track numbers for the other tracks check out too.

    @Bina - let me know if this is of interest. If I can reasonably supply more info, I'll try to help.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2018
  18. Bina

    Bina MOT - Shanling

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    Disable it? It's just standard now playing screen, it makes no difference if there is the album art or the Shanling logo. So it doesn't slow up UI in any way.

    Can you send me that album over google drive or something?
     
  19. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

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    It really friggin' does. Sometimes it's hard to get to the UI at all because of it. It certainly put someone off yesterday, who was looking for a DAP- everything he did seemed to be blocked by the SHANLING/artwork screen. That def. lost you a sale, so it's not just me.

    At best, it's an extra spurious UI interaction, making single click operations like track skipping more than twice as long. It's a small irritant that becomes major not just because it's a poor bit of HCI design, but also because it has bugs- sometimes refusing to go away at all until you turn the screen off and back on again.

    Even without the bugs, spending a fair amount of your time staring at a screen that actively prevents interaction is an unnecessary faff. It should be both optional and better at getting out of the way.

    Regarding the other thing, I will drop you a PM when I'm not on a train. We must avoid any accusations of music piracy ;)

    Edit: You have a PM
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2018
  20. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    If I understand what we’re talking about here, the Shanling logo is the now playing screen for albums without artwork. To get to the player controls, you have to do a single tap on the screen, which brings up play/pause, forward/back, etc. Apparently sometimes there’s a bug where the screen hangs so the single tap doesn’t bring up the playback controls? Is that what you mean @Kattefjaes?
     

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