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Radically upgrade your sound and music experience with this 100dB HiFi Bluetooth speaker/portable audio monitor. 50 hours playtime!
1,083 backers pledged £84,768 to help bring this project to life.

Final Tweaks

Posted by Frankenspiel Ltd. (Creator)
4 likes

Hello everyone,

Thanks to John H. Halpern, M.D. for sharing new recordings using his ‘First Look’ units.

The recordings are two .wav 48kHz/24bit files using a portable Zoom digital recorder set in XY setting.

Remember, the quality of these recordings will be highly dependant on the device you are using, try to use a good pair of headphones if you can.

 Rage Against The Machine's ‘Bulls on Parade’

An alternate take of The Beatles' ‘I am the Walrus’

JHH does report small ‘signal loss skips’ in each recording with his ‘First Look’ units. These small signal losses within range were due to a software bug. This bug has now been eliminated and the only signal losses you will experience with the production models will be if the FS-X is out of range (10 m for single mode, 5 m for dual mode). Or if you were to try to operate dual mode between walls or doors.

After all the bug fixing, tweaking and testing, we’d like to confirm our final position on a few functions and specs.

Battery warning (audible alarm)

In reference to Update #79, at highest volumes (around 110 dB) and whilst the FS-X is not fully charged, there is a small possibility of false low battery detection, triggering the audible battery alarm.

TO CLARIFY:

The audible warning could possibly be triggered if you use the FS-X wirelessly at its highest volume, 110 dB, and only if the battery charge level is below around 3.6V.

Having thought long and hard, the solution of removing the warning altogether seems too drastic. For most users, they are unlikely to use the speaker at its highest volume of 110 dB for longer than a couple of hours. With consideration to health warnings and our disclaimer, and remembering that 110 dB is 2 times louder than 100 dB, or 16 times louder than 70dB, we recommended to limit exposure at this volume to no more than 30 mins.

For normal use, the audible warning serves an important purpose. So we have come to the conclusion that either removing this feature or limiting volume would impose greater annoyance than the rare ( possible) occurence of a false audible warning. Instead, we will issue an application note pointing out that there are workarounds.

Advice on high volume (110 dB ) operation:-

We recommend that if you want to operate the FS-X at its highest volume for extended periods of time (> 3 hours), either:

A. Make absolutely sure the battery level is fully charged beforehand. Or, 

B. If you know in advance you want to play at 110 dB for a 3 hour + session and you want to absolutely guarantee the alarm will never be triggered, we recommend using the USB charge cable (or use it after 3 hours).

Note:- this does NOT mean you are tied to a wallplug, a powerbank will work equally well.

How will you know if the battery is fully charged? With the charge cable plugged in, if the red light stops flashing, it's fully charged. You can also check the icon on your device (but remember in dual mode this only indicates charge level on master FS-X).

Power management

Automatic power-saving is implemented.

If the FS-X detects no music after 15 minutes, it will automatically go into power-saving mode. In power-saving mode, consumption is so low it would only drain the battery in 4 years.

Safety features

These features have all been thoroughly tested and re-tested after the various software changes and bug fixes. They are all working perfectly, with no issues.

  • Full thermal protection circuit 
  • Battery safety circuit 
  • Charge circuit protection

We are in the final phase of testing to ensure the FS-X is 100% ready for commercial purposes.

Once we have completed final software testing, we will be able to provide you with more pictures, videos, a specific timeline and we will resume reviews with professional bloggers and YouTube vloggers.

Your next update will be no later than a week from now, Wednesday 2nd September.

All the best, 

The Frankenspiel Team

Darren Powell, PUMA, and 2 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. Marcus Sundman on

      Marsha, the safety recommendations reason is pure BS. Put a speaker like this in a park or any open space where you actually would need that "110 dB" and it won't be unsafe even at a fairly close distance. The beacon reason is also BS, because if they want a beacon they would make it on-demand bluetooth-activated (there'd surely be high enough voltage in the battery for powering the bluetooth chip with such a low current, for quite a while). And c'mon, you remember where you put your valuable things. Are your other things beeping all the time just in case you might lose them? Maybe your bike helmet is beeping? Or your shoes? How about your watch? Or even the TV remote? No, they are not, because it would be extremely annoying.

    2. Marsha Tyszler
      Superbacker
      on

      Guys, the overall battery's playback time doesn't seem to have changed the way I'm reading the update. I think Frankenspiel is just giving an example of playback time at 110 dB based on their safety recommendations before people blow out their hearing. And they are mentioning that because it would be rare for people to be listening at such high volumes for a long period of time before their ear drums would rupture! In other words . . .

      -- They first mentioned playing for 30 mins at the loudest volume based on their recommendations of their calculations of how long you should be playing at the loudest volume before your hearing gets destroyed. And after that period of time, if you were to leave the volume at its max and the battery dropped dead, the alarm would sound. Thus, they recommend x workaround to avoid the beeping alarm for a low battery.

      -- Then they mentioned the 3 hours time, should one ignore the recommended playing time of up to 30 minutes before you destroy your ears. Perhaps this situation of ignoring the recommendation would apply if you were in a huge auditorium or in an outdoor park where you wouldn't be right near the speakers. And after that period of time, if you were to leave the volume at its max and the battery dropped dead, the alarm would sound.

      Thus, neither time figure has to do with how long the battery lasts. They are using both as part of examples as to illustrate use-cases that might falsely trigger the alarm at 110 dB, and are providing suggested workarounds based on the uses. I'm not sure why some of you are interpreting these playback times as changes in the battery performance, but I'm pretty certain that it still remains at the promised 50 hours. But just remember, as the company mentioned long ago (and I think playback figures were provided for this . . . ), if you were to play your FS-X at the highest volume all the time on Bluetooth, it would run the battery down somewhat faster because louder volumes use more power . . . but somewhat faster isn't 3 hours or 30 mins! ;-p I

      I know a lot of people here are not getting the point of the alarm. I was always under the impression that it's meant to help find the units if the battery drops dead. You know, like when many of our devices drop dead, there is some kind of way to find it. The FS-X alarm reminds me of those beeping beacons when a drone battery drops dead and you can't find it. With such portable speakers, it could be very easy to misplace them when they aren't kept on your desk at home all the time. So the beeping is not meant for knowing the battery leve while the speakers are in hand -- for that, you can look at the LED or your phone. But it has nothing to do with that. It's there to help you find the unit/s once the battery is dead so you can find them and plug them in. As a beacon after the battery drops dead, which I believe has been the intent ll along, I see a purpose. I'd sure hate to lose them somewhere.

      Truth be told, Frankenspiel is correct that few people will be playing their music at the max level, and certainly not for the lengths of time cited. However, I do wish it would work correctly to make certain there isn't a sudden alarm at an inopportune time (ie: playing music during a little girls' dance recital in an auditorium, etc.). It seems like the chance of a false trigger is small for most normal use cases, but for those who blow their brains out on a regular basis, I think there's a very easy solution other than the workarounds that the company suggests above:

      -- If you plan on blaring your music at the highest volume, you can probably lower it just below the 110 decibel max so that it's still really loud . . . but then the alarm won't have a chance of triggering. I bet you'd still have no problem hearing between 105-109 decibels. Frankenspiel would have to test my theory here to see if this eliminates the alarm.

      I am not in the camp of people who think this feature should get the boot entirely. Why? Because it's very likely that many of us won't always stay on top of charging our speakers or will forget to charge sometimes, especially when we tote them around with us. And that means there is a huge chance of us losing/misplacing our FS-X's after the battery dies if we have no way of hearing them via music or an alarm. Try finding a dead FS-X in a park, at a campsite, at a party, etc. without an audible alarm or a way to play music. Instead of possibly losing my speakers, I'd rather take my chances of a false alarm sounding at 110 dB . . . because that's a much less common use-case.

      Again, I'm not excusing Frankenspiel here. I still think there's gotta be a resolution that is being overlooked. Perhaps if they brought some tech whiz in to have a look, a fresh eye might catch what they're missing. Sometimes when you're staring at your own project, at a certain point, things start to blur, which makes it hard to find errors. That's when you call in a tutor or friend to have a look. So that would be my suggestion to Frankenspiel. Hire someone with experience in this area to have a look. It's very possible that person will spot the problem very quickly in enough time for you to fix it. I suspect that it's something minor that you guys are missing, and I really think getting an outside person might help you hit this last nail on the head.

    3. Stephen Brown on

      Hi, I'm moving to another country next week and so need to update my address - how can I do that please?

    4. Marcus Sundman on

      There is no need for a disrupting warning. With other speakers the audio quality drops noticeably when the voltage drops (if they don't turn off completely), and that is warning enough. If you want more warning you can look at the LED. No need for an audible warning which would disrupt the music. The only reason they kept this is because they can't get rid of it, so they are telling that this bug is a feature. (Basically pissing on us and telling us it's just raining.)

      And I'm not really surprised that the "50 hours" of playback at full volume is actually 3 hours. (Of course it would have been nicer of FS to skip the 50h BS to begin with.)
      My old blaupunkt velocity2go would play for like a week on low volume, but on full volume (which is actually quite loud, which I doubt the FS-X is) they managed barely 30 minutes.

    5. Missing avatar

      Darius Zaerin on

      Keep em Lee, it's something.

      Now for even more of my time and energy for something productive; regarding the warning...if there is a visual warning anyway, I'd say just get rid of the audio one. It really isn't a vital feature worth weeks of careful deliberation when compared to working, uninterrupted audio. Just my opinion.

    6. Lee Gibson on

      Shhh I still have to return the preview set. I am likely to be running them at full volume when I take them snowboarding and people want to party. I'd appreciate it if this was rectified so the warning was correct and not in error.

    7. Missing avatar

      Emma Halliday on

      Whilst I appreciate you're trying to fix things, I'd just like to know when they will be delivered, they are more than a year overdue...

    8. Missing avatar

      Darius Zaerin on

      Lewes and everyone. Of course we have. That was the whole intention of their latest BS. The issues of the early Baker units are the same they've been unable to solve this whole last year. They are plain and obvious, there's no way they didn't realise they weren't there if they'd listened to their speakers even once. We've just been fed some crumbs to subdue the anger that was mounting. We're back to absolutely nothing. There are no speakers ready to ship. These first look units were supposed to be the first of the real deal, but it turns out 'retail versions' will have scratch proof lacquer and waterproof gaskets, which are both additions that are part of the MANUFACTURING PROCESS, but it's even missing in these samples that, after all we've been through and being the first impression we're gering as a community, should and probably are the best they have to offer.

    9. Missing avatar

      Richard Sutton on

      So if you want to listen to them loud the playtime drops from 50 hours to 3?

    10. Jeff on

      As I have mentioned I bought a pair of bluetooth speakers long ago at this point....
      But I will say I am a littler perturbed that they keep mentioning having speakers ready for reviewers and "vbloggers" before getting them in the hands of the people who backed the project.

    11. Miguel Van de Casteele on

      Last update: We are in the final phase of testing to ensure the FS-X is 100% ready for commercial purposes (testing was reopened after our software changes and bug fixes were complete).

      This update: We are in the final phase of testing to ensure the FS-X is 100% ready for commercial purposes.

      Next update: Who is in a betting mood???

    12. Missing avatar

      Farhad Heravi on

      So again when can we expect our units?

    13. Missing avatar

      Kevin Jacoby on

      I appreciate your effort.

      Just getting tired of delay.
      Can you provide a clear time line? (Maybe to much that ask).

    14. Lewis Purvis on

      So have we totally thrown any time frame updates out of the window now then? If you have sorted the bugs, or decided to release an app note along side it as it'd cause too much delay, ship the darn things! Am i missing something?