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Author Topic: Seeed Music Audio Shield  (Read 2699 times)
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I'd be interested to hear of any recent (Dec 2012/Jan 2013) experience with the Seeed Music Shield.

Finally (after much web research) I playback for MP3s just fine using code from GitHub. WAV files play, but they are filled with static.

Original files are fine on my computer - 44.1 khz 16 bit WAV.

Anyone else have issues with WAV playback specifically and if so, suggestions on solutions? Seems like a sample rate issue or something, but I am not a programmer and not a coder so I need help getting this to work. Support from company is terrible. I tried increasing the baud rate at the top of my program, but that didn't make a difference.

I've also used the Adafruit shield, which is great, but I need something higher quality and stereo. Currently trying the Sparkfun MP3 trigger v2, ut it only goes up to 192 khz.
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Jeremy J. dePrisco

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Hi there,

I'd be interested to know which libraries and code you used to make it work just to play mp3's, and on what arduino board. Did you have any other problems?

best,
g
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Yes, I used the code here to get my Seed Music Shield working:

https://github.com/amperka/music-shield

I had lots of trouble with the stock code supplied, as did many other people from what I could see online. Part of the problem may have been getting all the libraries together. I am not sure. I am not a coder. I needed something that "just works". At the very least an encouraging example that helps me move forward. Seeed is not that type of board, and I am not the only one who said they had trouble. Their instructions are vague and incomplete.

So I have MP3s that play now, but it doesn't play WAVs reliably. I was hoping to get full stereo WAV at 44.1 as advertised.

In my travels I also found a Russian site with some tips:

http://wiki.amperka.ru/звук:mp3-music-shield

In the mean time, I have explored the Sparkfun MP3 trigger, which does not do WAV, but is MUCH easier to work with. You don't technically need an Arduino to run it either. And it has 18 trigger points already set up. I am gradually going through all audio boards available and will post results back here. Appreciate anyone's help.
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Jeremy J. dePrisco

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The first time I worked with this board, I was running the Arduino IDE from my MacBook. The original source code from Seeed was very convoluted, and neither of their demos worked. Only after finding corrected code on GitHub did I get the shield working… to some extent. MP3 playback, volume and track forward/backward were fine. WAV playback was not crystal clear, and when playing WAVs, track volume and navigation were also compromised. The selling point of 44.1 Khz, 16-bit WAV playback was the whole reason I purchased this board!

Seeed support was useless and requests for help on Arduino.cc did not result in any groundbreaking tips.

In order to start fresh – and retrace my steps – I came back to the original demos using the Arduino IDE 1.0.3 on my PC. That way I knew I was starting with clean libraries, and could more easily control the testing scenarios without botching other projects.

The first problem I ran into was that the ZIP files for the demos would not download onto a PC running XP with Firefox. So I actually had to download the files onto my MacBook first, then transfer the files to the PC via thumb drive.

The second problem I ran into was that the Seeed sketches were referring to WProgram.h, not Arduino.h. I also had to overcome incompatibilities in the New Serial libraries – help for which is easily found from a number of places by searching on the error codes. I even changed the pins library, even though this was only recommended for Linux users.

Over the course of about 2 hrs, I did some troubleshooting for the 1.4 and 1.7 demo examples. Both tests were performed separately – with only the libraries for the specific test installed at once (because Seeed tells you that the libraries can’t coexist). SD card was freshly formatted, with files in correct format and naming structure.

The first demo (1.4) failed miserably. The sketches compiled, and uploaded, but none of them resulted in playback – MP3 or WAV.

Demo 2 (1.7) eventually worked for MP3s, but WAVs were still played back with extra static and noise, similar to my other experiences with the GitHub code. At times it just sounds like the device is choking on the WAV data, which would make sense since there’s more data to process. No difference running via battery, USB or 9V adapter.

I can only conclude that a) this board is defective, or b) there is a user-definable codec setting somewhere in the Arduino code/library that is simply set incorrectly. Unfortunately, if the problem is a codec setting, I am not experienced enough to track that down. I tried to explore the code/libraries with my basic understanding, hoping there would be some obvious setting, but I didn’t find any. I could be looking for something that doesn’t exist.

For now I have a glorified MP3 player, which I guess is something. Other people have not even gotten this far with this board, but I appear to be the only one who has experienced the WAV issue. I will send a free CD out of my catalog (visit www.shivasongster.com) to anyone who can help me figure this out.

Why do I need WAV playback?
Hi-res MP3 is very good, and in most cases playback from this shield will not happen on a system with suitable 20 Hz-20 Khz speakers for full 44.1 Khz playback. My problem with using MP3 in this case is more about time than it is audio quality. MP3 requires a step for conversion. I’d like to be able to drag/drop WAV content directly from my writing/recording platforms, without the extra step of compressing the files.
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Jeremy J. dePrisco

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I am having the same problems.
Got compile errors and had to replace:
WProgram.h -> Arduino.h
NewsoftSerial.h -> Softwareserial.h
The links below explain this.
http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php?topic=84789.0
http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php?topic=105682.0

After overcoming these compile errors I attempted to download demo-2.
The fat16 file in demo-2 would not unzip. I'm stuck at this point.
Any ideas??

So far I have not been able to play any files at all.
-Steve
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Yeah, I don't know what's up with the zip file, particularly on PC. I thought it was something weird with my config, but if others are having the download/extract problem, then something else is up. I actually had to unzip it on my Mac, then transport the files over my network to my PC. Ridiculous.

I have to be honest, I've all but given up on the Seeed board. It wasted so much time. I spent several hours trying to get it to work from my MacBook. All I ever got was MP3 playback. Then another several hours on my PC - hoping that a completely new Arduino IDE environment would help. I followed all of their instructions (as best I could - they are terribly written). I could still get nothing more than the MP3 playback, no reliable WAV. But experience with some other boards - like Rugged Shield - shows that my WAVs may have some meta data that these shields don't like, so I might go back to that.

http://www.shivasongster.com/2013/03/rugged-audio-shield/

If you like I can send you what I have for the Seeed via Dropbox.
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Jeremy J. dePrisco

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I have not used dropbox before so you'll need to explain it. Yes I'd like to see what you have. for my particular application I would be happy if I could get demo2 to play mp3. As far as WAV have you tried different bit depths? Maybe your samples are 32 bit and it is expecting 16 or vise versa. I also thing there are several completely different formats that call themselves WAV and they are not compatable.

Yeah, I don't know what's up with the zip file, particularly on PC. I thought it was something weird with my config, but if others are having the download/extract problem, then something else is up. I actually had to unzip it on my Mac, then transport the files over my network to my PC. Ridiculous.

I have to be honest, I've all but given up on the Seeed board. It wasted so much time. I spent several hours trying to get it to work from my MacBook. All I ever got was MP3 playback. Then another several hours on my PC - hoping that a completely new Arduino IDE environment would help. I followed all of their instructions (as best I could - they are terribly written). I could still get nothing more than the MP3 playback, no reliable WAV. But experience with some other boards - like Rugged Shield - shows that my WAVs may have some meta data that these shields don't like, so I might go back to that.

http://www.shivasongster.com/2013/03/rugged-audio-shield/

If you like I can send you what I have for the Seeed via Dropbox.
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Thanks for sending the fixed files. I can play mp3s now which is all I need.
Even with the fixed files I could not unzip fat16 on my windows vista box. I had to unzip on winXP using Winzip11.

I have a question about the audio plug on the Seeed.
If I push the headphones all the way in I get no sound. I have to back the plug out 1/8 inch to get sound.
Anyone else have this problem?
Is my plug too long?

-Steve


Yeah, I don't know what's up with the zip file, particularly on PC. I thought it was something weird with my config, but if others are having the download/extract problem, then something else is up. I actually had to unzip it on my Mac, then transport the files over my network to my PC. Ridiculous.

I have to be honest, I've all but given up on the Seeed board. It wasted so much time. I spent several hours trying to get it to work from my MacBook. All I ever got was MP3 playback. Then another several hours on my PC - hoping that a completely new Arduino IDE environment would help. I followed all of their instructions (as best I could - they are terribly written). I could still get nothing more than the MP3 playback, no reliable WAV. But experience with some other boards - like Rugged Shield - shows that my WAVs may have some meta data that these shields don't like, so I might go back to that.

http://www.shivasongster.com/2013/03/rugged-audio-shield/

If you like I can send you what I have for the Seeed via Dropbox.
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