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Old 05-08-2005, 00:45   #1
Tempus
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Okay, I just got my I5 about 4 days ago, and have been playing with...I mean TESTING it.

I've got my songs encoded in Ogg Vorbis at Q2. Prior to purchase I tried to find out on these boards what kind of battery life I could expect with Ogg Vorbis, but couldn't find much more than estimates. I thank those of you that tried, but I feel that, for the next poor soul that comes along looking for this information, I should post some concrete test results.

First, here's how I ran the test. I fully charged up a brand new Rayovac AAA IC3 800mAh NiMH battery. I then put it in the player, attached some Sennheiser PX100 headphones, and started it playing, and left it sitting on my dresser until it shut off from lack of power. The firmware version is 1.10a, and the settings I used were:

Backlight: On all the time at 0 red, 5 green, 0 blue.
Equalizer: On, set on USR, with levels of +12, +5, 0, +7, and +15, reading left to right.
BBE: 1
Mach3Bass: Off
MP Enhance: Off
3D Surround: Off
Pan: 0
Battery Type: Rechargeable
Play mode: Boundry All, Repeat On, Shuffle Off.
Volume: 25 (However, the files had been wavegained prior to being encoded, so they were quietter than the typical file, so this setting of 25 was probably equivalent to a setting of 15-20 on a normal file)

I used the "Information" screen to check on the voltage every half hour until it shut itself off. Here, then, are the results of my test:

HH:MM--Voltage
00:00 -- 1.40V...Began playback.
00:30 -- 1.35V
01:00 -- 1.32V
01:30 -- 1.31V
02:00 -- 1.31V
02:30 -- 1.30V
03:00 -- 1.29V
03:30 -- 1.29V
04:00 -- 1.28V
04:30 -- 1.27V
05:00 -- 1.24V
05:30 -- 1.20V
06:00 -- Discovered the I5 to be off -- Testing terminated.

When I turned the player back on, I checked which song it stopped on, and was able to determine based on this information that it ran about 5 hours and 55 minutes before shutting off, which is close enough to 6 hours that I'll just call it that.

Now, 6 hours may sound like a poor runtime, but I find it entirely acceptable, given the fact that I was not exactly being kind. I had the backlight on the ENTIRE time, had some JetEffects enabled, was playing Ogg Vorbis files -- which I am told draw considerably more power than MP3s do -- and ran the test without any breaks, thereby giving the battery no chance whatsoever to recover voltage. It's not a worst case scenario, but I think it's a fairly demanding test.

Hopefully this information will prove useful to someone out there who is now, like I was, starved for solid information on Ogg Vorbis Battery life in the I5.
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Old 05-08-2005, 02:05   #2
vinnie97
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Great test, another one with backlight off would be revealing.
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Old 05-08-2005, 05:06   #3
Tempus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinnie97
Great test, another one with backlight off would be revealing.
I doubt it would make a significant difference, because from what I've read the backlight only uses about 6 mA when used in this 0 red, 5 green, 0 blue mode. It's a very power efficient backlight color. If one were just running the backlight, and nothing else, one would expect 800mAh/6mA=~133 hours of run time. The fact that the test showed a run time of 6 hours means it was probably drawing somewhere in the vacitiny of 133mA including the backlight.

These numbers are all very rough estimates, but once you subtract the power draw of the backlight, I would expect the run time to increase by no more than 17 minutes if all other factors remained constant.

Personally, I think it's worth sacrificing 17 minutes of run time to make the display more readable, because this is quite clearly an LCD display that was designed to be backlit. When I compare the display to my (Casio) wristwatch, both with their backlights off, the wristwatch display is much easier to see. The I5's screen looks far darker in normal indoor lighting than the watch's display does, making it rather difficult to read. Leaving the backlight on all the time in the aforementioned color negates this problem quite effectively.
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Old 05-08-2005, 08:39   #4
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Also consider the fact that NiMH batteries need some charging cycles to gain their full potential; they might not have their full capacity yet. I think it's close to a worst case scenario, so the results really are acceptable.
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Old 05-31-2005, 04:21   #5
Tempus
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***UPDATE***

I have re-run the test, using all the same settings as before. There were different songs loaded into the player, but they were still wavegained songs which were then encoded as Q2 Ogg Vorbis files, so there should be no practical difference there.

There is one practical difference, however, which is that the battery has had 2 or 3 additional discharge/recharge cycles. Based on what zap said, and similar things I'd already read elsewhere, I decided to rerun the test, since the battery was so new the first time. Here are the results:

HH:MM--Voltage
00:00 -- 1.44V...Began playback.
00:30 -- 1.37V
01:00 -- 1.34V
01:30 -- 1.32V
02:00 -- 1.32V
02:30 -- 1.31V
03:00 -- 1.30V
03:30 -- 1.30V
04:00 -- 1.29V
04:30 -- 1.29V
05:00 -- 1.28V
05:30 -- 1.26V
06:00 -- 1.24V
06:30 -- 1.20V
06:50 -- The I5 shut itself off. Testing terminated.

So, as you can see, when the battery was brand new, the player, in this rather demanding test, ran for 5 hours and 55 minutes, but after the batteries had been broken in a bit, it ran for 6 hours and 50 minutes. That's a gain of 55 minutes of run time just from 2 or 3 charging cycles over a brand new battey.

I believe I've read somewhere that it actually takes more like 5 or 6 cycles to break in a new NiMH battery, so it's possible the run time will improve further still in the future.
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Old 06-05-2005, 02:29   #6
burnfox
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I just wonder how could COWON official get the 20hrs playing time,what kind of batteries they used,900mAh Sanyo NiMH battery or alkaline battery?
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Old 06-05-2005, 17:41   #7
Tempus
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That's simple; they weren't pushing it anywhere near as hard as I am. I'm using Ogg files, and they would be using MP3 files, which take considerably less power to decode. Also, I'm leaving the backlight on the whole time, and in their testing they weren't. Also, they would have had all jeteffects off during their testing, whereas I have EQ and BBE on. They may have had the volume turned down lower than I did, which would also save power. They may have been using more efficient headphones than mine, thereby saving even more power. Finally, they were most likely using one of the better alkaline batteries, whereas I am using an medium capacity 800mAh NiMH rechargable that isn't even fully broken in yet.

I have no doubt that getting 20 hours would be possible under the right circumstances, I just don't care to take the time to run tests that don't reflect how I am personally going to use it.
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Old 06-05-2005, 18:17   #8
foreigngadgetlove
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Tempus, thanks for the info. I haven't received my I5 yet, but I'm still debating whether to go with OGG or MP3. The info about battery consumption is helpful.

I know you helped me with my question about MP3 in the other thread, so could you please tell me how many MB/minute music takes up at Q8 or Q9 in OGG format?
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Old 06-05-2005, 19:16   #9
Tempus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foreigngadgetlove
Tempus, thanks for the info. I haven't received my I5 yet, but I'm still debating whether to go with OGG or MP3. The info about battery consumption is helpful.
No problemo.
Quote:
Originally Posted by foreigngadgetlove
I know you helped me with my question about MP3 in the other thread, so could you please tell me how many MB/minute music takes up at Q8 or Q9 in OGG format?
I already answered in the other thread.
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Old 06-05-2005, 19:24   #10
foreigngadgetlove
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempus
Quote:
Originally Posted by foreigngadgetlove
Tempus, thanks for the info. I haven't received my I5 yet, but I'm still debating whether to go with OGG or MP3. The info about battery consumption is helpful.
No problemo.
Quote:
Originally Posted by foreigngadgetlove
I know you helped me with my question about MP3 in the other thread, so could you please tell me how many MB/minute music takes up at Q8 or Q9 in OGG format?
I already answered in the other thread.
Haha, you deserve "most helpful member of the year" award in my book.

Another question: I've noticed on some pages with I5 specs they say "JetEffect is partially applied to Q9 when OGG is played." What does this mean? Is JetEffect automatically applied? Which JetEffect and why is it applied? Is there some way to disable it? Seems very strange to me...
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Old 06-05-2005, 20:08   #11
Tempus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foreigngadgetlove
Haha, you deserve "most helpful member of the year" award in my book.
Thanks, I do my best.
Quote:
Originally Posted by foreigngadgetlove
Another question: I've noticed on some pages with I5 specs they say "JetEffect is partially applied to Q9 when OGG is played." What does this mean? Is JetEffect automatically applied? Which JetEffect and why is it applied? Is there some way to disable it? Seems very strange to me...
I've asked that question myself, and have not gotten a satisfactory answer. I believe it means that the chipset within the I5 does not have enough processing power to simultaneously decode a Q9 OGG file AND apply all the jeteffects, so some or all of them might be unavailable when playing such a file. Assuming that this interpretation of their footnote is correct, it would mean that it would only bother you if you intended to use jeteffects on a Q9 or greater Ogg file, and that Q8 or below Ogg files would still allow use of any and all jeteffects.

I know the jeteffects all seem to work fine on my Q2 Ogg files.
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Old 06-05-2005, 21:01   #12
foreigngadgetlove
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempus
I've asked that question myself, and have not gotten a satisfactory answer. I believe it means that the chipset within the I5 does not have enough processing power to simultaneously decode a Q9 OGG file AND apply all the jeteffects, so some or all of them might be unavailable when playing such a file. Assuming that this interpretation of their footnote is correct, it would mean that it would only bother you if you intended to use jeteffects on a Q9 or greater Ogg file, and that Q8 or below Ogg files would still allow use of any and all jeteffects.

I know the jeteffects all seem to work fine on my Q2 Ogg files.
This answer is good enough for me. I was afraid that it would automatically apply JetEffect at Q9 or greater. But I don't intend on using any JetEffect anyway, so I guess I shouldn't worry about it.
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Old 06-08-2005, 02:00   #13
IpaqMan
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When I got my I5, I ran similar battery tests using new AAA alkaline batteries and 128K mp3s. With no backlight and flat EQ and no sound enhancements, the I5 ran for about 20 hours. Jet effects or any sound enhancements dented the run time by a few hours. The green backlight when used occasionally did not affect run time significantly.

Basically, the I5 uses about 50 ma of current to play 128k mp3s. That works out to 16 hours for a 800 mah NiMH battery.
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