Unoffical empeg BBS

Quick Links: Empeg FAQ | Software | RioCar.Org | Hijack | jEmplode | emphatic
Repairs: Repairs | Addons: Eutronix | Cases

Topic Options
#20916 - 22/10/2000 08:52 2 Weeks Later
avatarTX
member

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 193
Loc: Dallas Texas USA
Okay, here I am 2 full weeks in to my new toy. Here is what I think and what I have found.

Some of the 'newness' has worn off but I still find myself admiring the MK2. It has worked flawlessly so far. One small quirk that I noticed is previously when I would shut my car off the system shut down perfectly. Now when I shut my car off I am getting the loud pop from the amp. Its only a small annoyance to me, and I get past it by turning off the empeg first before turning off my car. The problem did not exist at first, which is puzzling.

I have settled on my favorite 2 or 3 graphic modes and don't really bother with the rest, although my friends like to scroll through them all when they are in my car. Here is something else I wonder about - when I turn off my player my system is playing a particular graphic. When I power it back up it always comes back up in Track ID mode when I sort of expected it to pick up where it left off, just like the song does. Is this a bug or a feature?

I do a software update to the player once a week, usually adding about a dozen or so songs to it. I still have trouble getting them all to load without the system locking up at least once.. but even now I am used to that and its only a small annoyance.

I have it playing through my home stereo system as we speak and it works there perfectly as well. I had to tweek the EQ settings on my home system some since the car settings were different, and I am aware that there are settings that I can save on the player for while I have it in the house - I just have not done them yet.

For some reason my car now gets better gas milage. I find that I have slowed down my driving speeds some in order to get to experience the empeg more. I also find that I run to the corner store a lot more often than I used to.

In all, this is one slick puppy and I am very pleased. The few small problems that I experience are way too small for me to gripe and I recommend this player to any serious music enthusiast. Because of the cost, this player is not for everybody but for those of us that like music the way that I do, its a must have.

Carl

080000506 12gb-green
_________________________
Carl Aydelotte Dallas Texas USA empeg MKII 080000506 40gb-green

Top
#20917 - 22/10/2000 11:20 Re: 2 Weeks Later [Re: avatarTX]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7867
Loc: Seattle, WA
See this for information on the info screen always popping up in the car.

_________________________
Tom

Top
#20918 - 22/10/2000 11:22 Re: 2 Weeks Later [Re: avatarTX]
mtempsch
pooh-bah

Registered: 02/06/2000
Posts: 1992
Loc: Gothenburg, Sweden
In reply to:

When I power it back up it always comes back up in Track ID mode
when I sort of expected it to pick up where it left off, just like the song does. Is this a bug or a feature?


Added due to the US legal climate... What would happen if
someone had a collision/ran off the road and claimed to have
been distracted by the moving graphics? Can you say lawsuit?
I knew you could... But by active choice you can get
them back in the car, easily. Just press/hold the bottom
button and it should switch to the mode you left it in.
Same reason TVs etc for the car normally don't operate while
the car is moving.

Just press/hold the bottom button and it should switch to
the mode you left it in.

In reply to:

I do a software update to the player once a week, usually adding about a dozen or so songs to it. I still have trouble getting them all to load without the system locking up at
least once.. but even now I am used to that and its only a small annoyance.


Hmmmm, via ethernet or USB? I was one of those that
originally had problems with hangs with USB syncs.
Version 1.01 seems to have solved it for me...


_________________________
/Michael

Top
#20919 - 24/10/2000 05:23 Re: 2 Weeks Later [Re: avatarTX]
rob
carpal tunnel

Registered: 21/05/1999
Posts: 5316
Loc: Cambridge UK
The amplifier pop when you shut down could be caused by a known problem. If this is the case you would also find that the player powers down fully when the ignition is switched off instead of going into standby.

If this is the case you can email support@empeg.com and ask for an ISO Diode cable to be sent to you (free of charge). It will fix the problem.

Rob



Top
#20920 - 24/10/2000 05:59 Re: 2 Weeks Later [Re: rob]
schofiel
carpal tunnel

Registered: 25/06/1999
Posts: 2992
Loc: Wareham, Dorset, UK
Rob,

Has anyone considered that this may also be the same thing that was observed on the Mk 1 units?


One of the few remaining Mk1 owners... #00015
_________________________
One of the few remaining Mk1 owners... #00015

Top
#20921 - 24/10/2000 07:38 Re: 2 Weeks Later [Re: schofiel]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30789
Loc: Seattle, WA
Has anyone considered that this may also be the same thing that was observed on the Mk 1 units?

I don't think it could be. The Mark 1's didn't have an accessory line. The diode fixes a problem with the accessory voltage sense (as I understand it).

___________
Tony Fabris
_________________________
Tony Fabris

Top
#20922 - 24/10/2000 07:51 Re: 2 Weeks Later [Re: schofiel]
rob
carpal tunnel

Registered: 21/05/1999
Posts: 5316
Loc: Cambridge UK
In a way the problems are related - the Mk.1 popped the speakers because the unit powered down the amp remote at the same time as the rest of the player. The Mk.2 fixes this by powering down in a controlled way (since it has independent switched and permanant power inputs).

The problem with the Mk.2 occurs in a few vehicles which glitch the accessory line with a large (50V+) negative spike. This crashes the power control PIC and the controlled shutdown does not take place - hence the pop.

Rob



Top
#20923 - 24/10/2000 08:50 Re: 2 Weeks Later [Re: rob]
schofiel
carpal tunnel

Registered: 25/06/1999
Posts: 2992
Loc: Wareham, Dorset, UK
Aaahh - OK, then it is not really the same sort of thing.

One of the few remaining Mk1 owners... #00015
_________________________
One of the few remaining Mk1 owners... #00015

Top
#20924 - 11/11/2000 16:02 A Good Month Later [Re: avatarTX]
avatarTX
member

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 193
Loc: Dallas Texas USA
Its been over a month since I have had my MKII installed. I am still pleased as punch with it.

I finally got a chance to really put the player to the test this past week. I had to drive to Houston from Dallas and the player made the trip fly by like nothing.

For my friends across the pond, the state of Texas is roughly equal in size to the country of Spain, only not as scenic I am sure. Dallas is around 250 miles away from Houston and there is very little radio worth listening to in between. In the past I went stir crazy but this time the trip was ever so very pleasent.

Believe me, for those of you that 'dont get it' you will appreciate the beauty of this thing when you are stuck in a car for any real length of time.

Carl

080000506 12gb-green
_________________________
Carl Aydelotte Dallas Texas USA empeg MKII 080000506 40gb-green

Top
#20925 - 27/01/2001 10:04 A Good 3 Months Later [Re: avatarTX]
avatarTX
member

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 193
Loc: Dallas Texas USA
Well its been a good 3 or 4 months that I have had this puppy. I am STILL having fun. While I am not quite as giddy about it as the day I got it.. wait.. I take that back. I am still as giddy.

By now a few more friends have had the chance to play with it as well. I find that every one of them is awed about either the graphics, or the fact that it has a ton of music available.. but for some reason not many are in awe of both the graphics and the storage space. But I am. I find that interesting myself..

My unit does have a quirk, but I really suspect that it stems from my install. Most of the time my unit shuts down just fine. Once in a while I get the loud POP at powerdown, where the unit does not shut down gracefully. This is not a fault in my unit, I am convinced.

I work in a bad part of town and trust that my car will be okay in our parking lot. Only we have had some cars broken in to and stereo decks stolen in the past. This will never happen to me because I remove my deck and bring it inside. It sits on my desk all safe and sound. This is probably one of the best, and often overlooked features of the empeg.

I had to go to Houston again a few weeks ago. The empeg really makes that 4 hour highway drive nice. Lets face it, in an area where the only thing on the radio is farm reports and pork belly futures, even a high end FM receiver fails miserably. My empeg lets me blow right through those backwood po-dump towns with a smile.

If you are serious about music then this is the car toy for you. It hasn't helped me score with the ladies or brought me fame and fortune (I guess I need to re-think my master plan) but it has made me the envy of some of my friends. While the price will keep it out of most peoples hands, those of us that 'get it' are probably completely satisfied.

Carl

080000506 12gb-green
_________________________
Carl Aydelotte Dallas Texas USA empeg MKII 080000506 40gb-green

Top
#20926 - 27/01/2001 10:35 Re: A Good 3 Months Later [Re: avatarTX]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30789
Loc: Seattle, WA
My unit does have a quirk, but I really suspect that it stems from my install. Most of the time my unit shuts down just fine. Once in a while I get the loud POP at powerdown, where the unit does not shut down gracefully. This is not a fault in my unit, I am convinced.

Did you ever have Rob send you the diode adapter? That was supposed to fix the problem.

___________
Tony Fabris
_________________________
Tony Fabris

Top
#20927 - 05/03/2001 19:36 Re: A Good 3 Months Later [Re: tfabris]
avatarTX
member

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 193
Loc: Dallas Texas USA
No Tony, I never did. A combination of being 'too busy' and it not bothering me since I power the unit off before turning off my car, it really has not been a major problem for me.

I suppose I will ask for the diode at a later date.

Also, here is an FYI about another problem I have had. My unit sometimes locks up while uploading via USB, no apparent reason or pattern.. it just does it whenever. Sometimes I can upload 10 files, sometimes only 1. I did visit Microsofts web site this evening and discovered that they have a USB patch for Windows aimed for people with my particular CPU chip (AMD brand) so I downloaded and installed it. I have not yet tried it out, but I am hopeful that this new patch will fix that problem as well. I will be in touch as far as that is concerned.



Carl

080000506 12gb-green
_________________________
Carl Aydelotte Dallas Texas USA empeg MKII 080000506 40gb-green

Top
#20928 - 06/03/2001 13:06 Re: A Good 3 Months Later [Re: avatarTX]
tanstaafl.
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/07/1999
Posts: 5313
Loc: Ajijic, Mexico
My unit sometimes locks up while uploading via USB,

Carl --

Take a good long look through this thread and you will see that you are not alone.

I would be very interested in the particulars of the AMD patch you downloaded from Microsoft. Can you provide a URL? Have you had a chance to see if it solved your problem?

I now have all of my music installed in my empeg, so I no longer get the opportunity to do large downloads but I am pretty sure the problem is unresolved as I have had occasional lockups occur on small downloads. Interestingly, the lockups happen ONLY with my home computer (an AMD K6-2 at 500 MHz) and never on my work computer (A Pentium III at 550 MHz).

tanstaafl.

"There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch"
_________________________
"There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch"

Top
#20929 - 25/10/2001 14:10 One Year Later [Re: avatarTX]
avatarTX
member

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 193
Loc: Dallas Texas USA
I dont know what else I can say that I have not already said in previous posts. I still am tickled over this thing!

I have not installed the beta 2.0 - I will wait for it to be finished and released, no big deal to me.

I also have not yet ordered my tuner, but probably will next week.

It works as designed, sounds great, and I think that everyone should have one. It breaks my heart to read that Rio is dropping the product, especially after just aquiring the Empg company. It puzzles me - why such a quick 180 degree turn? Sigh..

I know that there are enough of us enthusiasts here to keep this product, this BBS and the get togethers going for a while, especially if you guys like yours as much as I like mine.

If any of you are thinking about getting one, take advantage of the new price drops and get your before they are all gone!
_________________________
Carl Aydelotte Dallas Texas USA empeg MKII 080000506 40gb-green

Top
#20930 - 26/10/2001 15:12 Re: One Year Later [Re: avatarTX]
SuperQ
addict

Registered: 13/06/2000
Posts: 429
Loc: Berlin, DE
Here's my ~1 year review..

I still love it, and it's paid for itself in usefullness many times over..

I am running the 2.0b3 right now, and all the little/big things they did with the software make it work even better.

I got the tuner, and it's been a nice change to be able to listen to cartalk on sunday mornings.. (one of the few times durring the week i actualy drive my car now)

I ordered a spare unit at the 699 price drop, (10gig) tho I will probably just sell it to one of my friends, my credit card isn't happy with me.
_________________________
80gig red mk2 -- 080000125
(No, I don't actually hate Alan Cox)

Top
#20931 - 30/11/2001 07:11 Tuner and v2.0b [Re: avatarTX]
avatarTX
member

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 193
Loc: Dallas Texas USA
I ordered my tuner a few weeks ago, and installed the beta v2,0 software as well. Here are my thoughts.

I now have as complete a car stereo system as anyone can get. I have been listening to the tuner a lot these past few weeks, more than I thought I would.. but I still play my MP3s too, I guess its almost 50-50.

Whenever someone new gets in my car they always look and point and say WHATS THAT! Then I have to spend 20 minutes showing them all that it does.. I am getting pretty good at demo'ing this thing.

I really like what I have seen in the new software. A lot of it is simply appearance but the touches are nice. I like the added visuals, better than the older ones. I had to take a few minutes to tweek some settings when I first installed the new software, but now everything seems to be just the way I like it.

I never really came across a lot of the bugs that were listed as being fixed, so I guess I am lucky there.. so far it works great.

In general, I spent a lot of money on this system. $300US' ish for my amp, $1100US' ish on my player, about $100US for the install, another $100 for my tuner. Thats a lot of money to ride around in my car and listen to music. Was it worth it? To me YES it was. I, for one, am one of those that 'gets it' and would not part with my system for a solid quarter.

I would post pics of my install but we all already know what an empeg player looks like installed in a dash, or an amp mounted in the trunk/boot. Its the SOUND that I wish I could post! I am the guy that never replaced the stock factory speakers and I am very pleased at the way it sounds!

Thats my review.
_________________________
Carl Aydelotte Dallas Texas USA empeg MKII 080000506 40gb-green

Top
#20932 - 30/11/2001 09:11 Re: Tuner and v2.0b [Re: avatarTX]
tonyc
carpal tunnel

Registered: 27/06/1999
Posts: 7058
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
Yeah the sound quality is fantastic. The Empeg is totally worth it, even for someone like myself who has to pay for it over the course of many months. You definitely do have to be someone who "gets it," if you're not, then you're better off with one of those AIWA CD mp3 player jobs. But if I ever meet anyone with one of those, I'd be scared to show them my Empeg for fear they break down crying.

_________________________
- Tony C
my empeg stuff

Top
#20933 - 30/11/2001 11:24 Re: Tuner and v2.0b [Re: avatarTX]
tanstaafl.
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/07/1999
Posts: 5313
Loc: Ajijic, Mexico
I am the guy that never replaced the stock factory speakers and I am very pleased at the way it sounds!

I am envious of you... because you still have ahead of you the incredible revelation you will get when you finally break down and put good quality speakers and a subwoofer in your car.

I am not going to try and describe the difference -- words can't convey it and you wouldn't believe me anyway. Let's just say that I reserve the right to be first in line to say "I told you so!" when you do it.

It's sort of like the empeg -- you'll never "get it" until you experience it for yourself.

tanstaafl.
_________________________
"There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch"

Top
#20934 - 01/12/2001 17:25 Re: Tuner and v2.0b [Re: tanstaafl.]
smu
old hand

Registered: 30/07/2000
Posts: 879
Loc: Germany (Ruhrgebiet)
Hi Doug.

I am with you as far as the addition of a sub goes, but depending on the factory speakers, you don't gain much by replacing those. I tried it (actually my installer tried to convince me to buy new speakers and installed them ahead of asking me about it), and while the sub was a great plus in my VW Golf III (with the best available stock audio system), the new speakers by themselfs didn't add much. New cables to the stock speakers were necessary though.

Anyway, I recommend to add a sub, but if you are satisfied with the stock speakers, I wouldn't waste any money on replacing those. But make sure you use decent cables to drive them. If you really want a top end audio system, you can't get there without replacing the stock speakers though.

cu,
sven
_________________________
proud owner of MkII 40GB & MkIIa 60GB both lit by God and HiJacked by Lord

Top
#20935 - 01/12/2001 17:43 Re: Tuner and v2.0b [Re: smu]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30789
Loc: Seattle, WA
This will depend on how good the stock speakers are in your car, of course.

The stock speakers in most cars are just begging to be replaced, though.

The main thing that I noticed when I replaced the front door speakers in my Honda with Polk Audio coaxials is that I was no longer hearing the speakers any more, now I was hearing the music. I know that sounds like salesman-speak, but it was true in my experience. The tinny high-midrange resonances in the stock speakers were just too overt, and made the system sound cheap. It drew attention to the location of the speakers so that I was acutely aware of their locations in the doors. After the polks went in, I was no longer distracted this way because the frequency response was smoother and flatter, without unnatural peaks.
_________________________
Tony Fabris

Top
#20936 - 03/12/2001 00:17 Re: Tuner and v2.0b [Re: smu]
tanstaafl.
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/07/1999
Posts: 5313
Loc: Ajijic, Mexico
... depending on the factory speakers, you don't gain much by replacing those

Oh, boy, Sven, you hit one of my hot buttons! But I'll read this post about five times before actually posting it so as to be sure not to offend anybody.

When you said "...the new speakers by themselfs didn't add much." I have to wonder about two things: what kind of speakers were in the car to begin with, and what kind of speakers your installer put in to replace them.

A pair of top quality speakers can sell for over $700 (see here), and frankly my ear isn't good enough to tell the difference between a $700 speaker set and a $300 speaker set -- but it is definitely good enough to tell the difference between a $300 speaker set and the $6 speaker set that you will find as factory speakers in most cars. Let me tell you an anecdotal tale of my speaker experience that made me a believer. I'll try not to be too longwinded and bore you to death...

I had a pretty good-sounding IASCA competition car -- it would place in the top three in competitions -- with 3.5" speakers in the dash at the base of the windshield, 6" speakers in the roof in the back (station wagon), and a 10" subwoofer tucked into the spare wheel. Very simple system, it sounded good because of blind luck with the acoustics of the car. But the judges were telling me I was lacking in mid-range so we added a pair of very good speakers high up in the doors -- MB-Quart 6.5" midrange.

At the next competition, the judge (who had heard my car previously) told me what I already knew -- suddenly my imaging was gone, the sound stage had dropped down about a foot, the mids and highs were muddy and lacking definition and clarity... after listening for about 30 seconds, the judge said, "You changed something, didn't you?" I said, yes. He said, "Made it worse, didn't you." I said yes.

After the competition, trying to tweak the system to get my sound back, I proved the old adage that electronic equipment is powered by smoke, because after I let the smoke out of my 3.5" Blaupunkts, they didn't work at all any more. Back to the stereo shop.

Dave (the stereo shop guy) said "...try these. You won't like them -- they're 4" MB-Quart coaxials, and most people think they're too bright." But I needed brightness to counter those 6.5" midrange speakers we'd added. These 4" coaxials were Q-series, about $350 for the pair of them. Just as an experiment, we set one of them on top of the dash where one of my melted 3.5 Blaupunkts had been and turned on the stereo. The difference was unbelievable. Dave and I just looked at each other in stunned surprise. My sound stage was up in the middle of the windshield. The sound was cleaner and brighter than it had ever been -- with the 6.5" midrange speakers adding a warmth and richness that had not been there before. That single 4" coaxial completely overwhelmed the muddiness in the midrange. And when we put the other one in, my staging and imaging was back, better than ever.

The difference that pair of speakers made, replacing a pair of supposedly pretty good Blaupunkts, was beyond anything I can describe in words.

Perhaps the lesson here is that replacing your stock speakers with some pretty good replacement speakers (which is what I had done when I added the Blaupunkts) helps a little bit... but replacing them with top quality speakers helps a lot.

Or, perhaps I just got lucky through a freak accident of acoustics.

YMMV.

tanstaafl.

_________________________
"There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch"

Top
#20937 - 04/12/2001 03:09 Re: Tuner and v2.0b [Re: smu]
rob
carpal tunnel

Registered: 21/05/1999
Posts: 5316
Loc: Cambridge UK
I replaced the factory speakers in my Supra (which were fairly good by factory standards) with Diamond M5's. I didn't want to have to rework my doors too much, so I needed 4" drivers (the same as the factory speakers) - so it's a good head-to-head comparison.

In fact absolutely no comparison can be made between the factorys and Diamonds - the sound quality with the new drivers is incredible considering their size. The clarity is beyond reproach and the volume of sound you get from such small drivers is hard to comprehend - you would think there were 6" drivers fitted if you didn't know better.

So, I would suggest that replacing the factory speakers can in fact make all the difference in the world, as long as you go for a good set of components (and include that sub as well of course).

Rob

Top
#20938 - 04/12/2001 07:48 Re: Tuner and v2.0b [Re: tanstaafl.]
avatarTX
member

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 193
Loc: Dallas Texas USA
I have often thought about adding a sub woofer to my car, and sometime in the future still may. I am not one of those audiophiles that wants to compete, or one of those 16 year old kids I hear drive down my street (Thump.. Thump.. Thump!) when I am sitting in my house .. but I do like to have good sound in my car.

I would probably add a sub before I replaces the factory speakers. And if I fall over and wonder what took me so long, I will let you know when to line/queue up for the "I Told You So's". That will be a fair trade.

If I were to do that, I would have to review my entire car sound system and not just my empeg player. Sticking to the topic, the player works great, the tuner works great, and v2.0beta is working great for me.

Oh Yeah - I meant to mention this before. Perviously I posted about having problem adding songs to my player, that sometimes during a sync it would pause, and time out. I am not 100% but I think I have that problem solved. The problem seems to have been my computer and not my player or software. I have since formatted the hard drive that I stored data on, installed a clean copy of Win2000 (I had 98 before) and now it has worked without incident. When an upload to the player would get stuck, I noticed that my HD was spinning and spinning while my computer processing seemed to stop or pause. A perpetual hour glass. I suspected that my HD had errors on it so I formatted, now it seems to be fine.
_________________________
Carl Aydelotte Dallas Texas USA empeg MKII 080000506 40gb-green

Top
#20939 - 04/12/2001 11:00 Re: Tuner and v2.0b [Re: avatarTX]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30789
Loc: Seattle, WA
I have often thought about adding a sub woofer to my car, and sometime in the future still may. I am not one of those audiophiles that wants to compete, or one of those 16 year old kids I hear drive down my street (Thump.. Thump.. Thump!) when I am sitting in my house .. but I do like to have good sound in my car.

Right. A properly-tuned subwoofer will not make your car thump as it drives down the street.

When Doug Burnside heard my system, he commented on the fact that my car had more low bass than he's used to hearing in competition systems. Yet when I roll up the windows, you don't really hear the stereo much at all, and there is no unnatural thumping. The bass from this system is smooth, flat, and tight, not boomy.

My license plate rattles a little, though.

A good subwoofer, when used properly, is all about getting the overall spectrum balanced correctly for the listening environment. In my case, I like to hear the low bass notes even when I'm driving down the freeway. Hence my slightly boosted low frequencies.
_________________________
Tony Fabris

Top