Posts filed under ‘PC Projects’
Wow! It have been a long time, seems 1 post / year is not quite a reasonable post rate for a blog, but whatever.
This year was quite busy for me, meaning almost no time for dev (other than for work)… I wish I could pull out the new iPodME quickly, but unfortunately I got bored with the UI stuff : the universal mac/win/linux command-line iPodME is done with all the neat presets (even with a custom XML preset system), multiple soft subtitles support (done correctly this time, with proper character encoding conversions) and hard subtitle integration with no need for plugins, faster encoding thanks to mencoder optmizations, etc. I even got all the needed tools (mencoder, mp4box etc) to build properly on mac. But building a nice UI takes times (especially on MacOS), and I can’t find the motivation to do it for now since it’s been a long time I’m not using iPodME anymore for my own purpose, and I’m unsure about going the Mac AppStore way (hey, I like open source-ness and free softwares). Still don’t know which way to go and for now, it’s on hold (sorry guys).
But then a small update to say that I’m now on github: https://github.com/sinedied
You may see there my open-sourced works from now on, from my work and my free time. iPodME may goes here someday…
I feel right for the last post of the year, with some news on iPodME!
Even though I haven’t released many updates this year, that doesn’t mean I did not worked on it, because big changes are coming for iPodME!
First, on the “current” version: iPodME, in its current form, will receive a final 2.5 update with some features that have been requested: 1080p resolution, and the possibility to unlock the maximum video bitrate, which means better video quality if you need it.
Then, for the big thing, on which I’ve been working for about a year now: a complete rewrite of iPodME from the scratch, but with cross-platform compatibility in mind. And as a good thing do not come alone, here is some features:
- Native UI for each platform (currently, Mac OS and Windows are planned, but Linux may come later also)
- No more based on ffmpeg, but now on mencoder which means more compatibility with existing formats (5.1 audio tracks could now be converted, recent wmv files too, etc)
- Profile-based encoding parameters, which means the video is now really optimized for your device, let it be an Apple TV, an iPhone 4 or an old iPod Video
- Simple interface, with the same ideas: 3 encoding speeds, with 2 possible optimizations: quality or file size
- Complete multicore support!
- Faster encoding, with more quality and smaller resulting files
- Support of multiple soft subtitles and burned-in subtitles
But there’s a catch (there’s always one). While some people supported my work through donations, and I’m really grateful to them, it’s not even close to allow me to buy a enough to eat everyday. And it was fine, as I was working on iPodME on my free time as a hobby project. But I’ve thinking of starting to live of my work as an independant developer, and the new iPodME would be my first “real” project, hence the complete rewrite. As for now, here’s my plan:
- The current iPodME, will be updated to 2.5 and remain free and open-source :-)
- The new iPodME (let’s say, v3.0) will come to Mac OS on the Mac AppStore early 2011, selling for a small fee (i’ve been thinking of 2.99$)
- As for the new Windows version, I currently don’t know. There’s no easy way like the upcoming Mac AppStore on Windows to sell independant software, and I don’t want to go with some boring protection schemes like serials to allow me selling it. I may just go the donationware way as it is currently, with a small text on the first launch to explain it better. Or I can go the ads way (but I hate ads…). Still not decided…
I hope that I won’t kill the “soul” of iPodME going this way, and that you’ll still love it.
Meanwhile, I wish you the best for 2011. Happy new year!!
Finally! I should have done this a long time ago but there was always something else in the way, still…
I just added the resolutions for the new iDevices, I hope to bring up more new features someday.
- 21/11/10 – Version 2.4:
+ added resolutions for iPad, iPod/iPhone 4 Retina and 720p (Apple TV)
As promised, here is the final version of a1ctl. By “final”, I mean it won’t receive update anymore. But fortunately, the source code is available so anyone is able to take up the project.
I’ve read all the comments, bug reports and feature requests and added/corrected everything I could. If your bug is not fixed or your feature not added, it’s because I couldn’t. Concerning GPU overclocking, I dropped it because first the author of GMABooster didn’t want to share the code (he don’t want me to dig a hole into his donations). I could have written my own ASM code for it, but then I made my own tests and it appears that if the GPU can be overclocked by up to 40%, the result is a 3-4% performance increase at best. So, it doesn’t deserve all the work for it.
I also tried to end up with the dreaded acpi log issue by using a new dll that use the windows acpi driver, but my tests were quite negative with it: doesn’t always work depending of the configuration, vista/seven issues. So I sticked with the old direct IO access method, and there’s still the patch.
As for the compatibility problems for the fan control, I have only an A150 netbook so I can’t predict how it will work on other machines, especially when it seems that Acer uses different EC chips in some netbook versions. But if you’re able to read the temperature, then you should be able at least to find the fan control values manually using the new configuration options. I will eventually be useful also for further bios updates.
I Hope there won’t be bothering bugs in this version!
Thanks for using my tool.
- 04/08/2009 – version 1.0
+ added custom resolution as .ini setting (downscaling is though
still limited to 1024×768 due to some restriction)
+ added custom EC values for fan control, with simple testing function
+ added custom device support
= updated values for newest BIOS versions
= fixed slow mode threshold
= fixed small bugs here and there
Just updated iPodME to version 2.3.
The only change is that it fixes accentuation problems with subtitles.
I know it’s been a long time that an a1ctl update was announced, but I lost some motivation as I don’t use my aspire one a lot anymore, and my free time is getting precious.
However, a final (meaning last) update of a1ctl should be released soon with the correction (hopefully) of the last bugs, and a lot of user customization functions (resolution, fan control values etc). Even is newer BIOS are released, fan control values could then still be updated manually by the users.
I’m currently integrating the Sonny’s patches into my version, I hope to have the release ready by the week end (though I’m not really good at estimating release dates ;)).
Thanks for your support all this time, I hope you’ll like this last version!
Again, another iPodME update that fixes several issues and adds some features requested in the comments.
I’ve made some testing, and it seems multiple subtitles support is quite unreliable for now. Using only one subtitle file / video works fine though. I’m working on it, and I’m also searching a way to support multiple audio tracks in an elegant way (iPodME’s goal is to remain simple and straightforward while being as exhaustive as possible, which is quite a hard task).
- 13/03/09 – Version 2.2:
+ subtitles files are now automatically converted to UTF8 format (no more mp4box UTF8 errors)
+ added a “Fix aspect ratio” option which try to correct distorted videos aspect (use it only when needed)
+ added the possibility to specify the aspect ratio in the custom profile
= updated help
= minor source license modification
= fixed bug when input has .mp4 extension causing input and output file names to be identical
= temporary files are now cleaned correctly before shutting down the computer
Here’s a new version of iPodME, fixing the the incorrect FPS detection bug with some systems, and adding the saving of settings, as requested.
- 23/02/09 – Version 2.1:
+ last settings are now saved and automatically restored at start
= fixed the incorrect FPS detection bug with systems using a point as the decimal separator
= temporary files are now cleaned correctly before shutting down the computer
…and I mean, a BIG update!
It’s been a while since the last release, and some serious work have been done for the new 2.0 version! New features, faster conversion, better video quality, smaller video size and more input formats supported, what else?
- 12/02/09 – Version 2.0:
+ added support for soft-subtitles and multiple subtitles per video
- removed subtitles burning and DirectShow input support (AviSynth/VobSub no longer needed)
+ new input codecs supported
+ added a new encoder mode for custom profile: “output size” allow you to specify a target file size, the corresponding average bitrate will be automatically calculated (experimental).
+ output folder is now changeable
+ better remaining time estimation
= tweaked profiles to reflect last ffmpeg changes, providing faster encoding in most cases, better quality and smaller file sizes
= fixed a bug when iPodME was minimized and could be locked
= fixed some UI bugs
Since I now have very little free time since I started my new job, I decided to clarify the situation on some bugs/features of the current and next a1ctl versions:
The current a1ctl version may not work (no fan control & temperature) or only partially work (no slow mode for fan control), due to some different embedded controllers in newer Aspire One models. Since I don’t own those models, I’m not able to debug what good values may be for theses new chips, unfortunately.
In order to fix a1ctl for theses models, I’m going to release a tool (with some explanations of course) on how to find these “magic” values to read and control the EC chips in charge of the fan and temperature control, so any model may become compatible with a1ctl by the simple change of these “magic” values in the .ini file.
Concerning slow mode, while it may be working for most, sometimes you may have remarked that instead of going slow, the fan blows at full speed or is completely stopped. This is because there a temperature threshold preventing slow mode to be set: under a certain temperature, slow mode “magic” value activate full speed instead of slow mode.
In order to prevent that problem, I’ve added internally a threshold (set at 37°c) in the current version under which slow mode stop the fan completely until the effective slow mode can be activated. But it seems this threshold may be too tight sometimes (and maybe different on some models), causing full speed to be activated instead of slow speed.
As for the magic values, it will be possible to change the value of this threshold in the .ini in the next version, and I will set the default one a little bit higher (40°c) to prevent temperature yo-yo problem around the “real” threshold (found at 37°c on my AA1).
Please not also that I’ve read all comments and next a1ctl version will mostly include all your feature requests, exception the overclocking feature which is not possible to realize for now.
Thanks everyone for your support.