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Discussion Starter #1
It seems as if I can only get mp3 files to play with consistency on my 2017 RM. I got some FLAC files to play but only a few and I can't figure out why. I tried some lossless WAV files with no luck as well. The Owners manual states that both FLAC and WAV should play as well as mp3. What types of files have others had luck playing and while we are on the subject of the USB connection, what model Ipod have you had luck recognizing? I saw a post from someone using an Ipod Classic but I tried a Gen. 7 (last one before phase out of ipod classics) with no luck. I prefer FLAC because they are lossless (thus CD quality) and don't take much more space than an mp3.

I am hoping to find out what others have had success with.
 

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I downloaded an MP3 converter online to convert all my songs. I have Windows 10 and use Buy My MP3 Converter - Microsoft Store No problems at all. The manual also states to use no larger than an 8mb flash drive as well. I don't know what size you're using but if it's bigger than 8mb it may give you problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Dredging up an old thread in the hopes that Polaris/Indian will address this issue with a firmware upgrade.

The manual also states to use no larger than an 8mb flash drive as well.
I think you meant 8GB Flash drive and yep I have the Indian 8GB Drive they gave us with the bike as well as a 16GB that works fine as well. My beef is that the manual clearly states that the 'Radio' aka Ride Command will accept and play FLAC files (WAV as well) and it clearly does not. FLAC files would allow me to listen to uncompressed music on the scooter which translates to less distortion as you turn it up. Using Mp3 files with much less musical information will give me LOUD but not necessarily GOOD sound and with the inherent limitations to a sound system on a bike this is important to me. Distortion is much more prevalent with an Mp3 than it would be if we could use FLAC (or WAV or Apple Lossless) files. FLAC files are essentially CD quality files and provide lossless music rather than lossy files such as Mp3. This is something Indian could and should address with a firmware update. And while they are at it, why not give us a GPS with a Garmin backbone as many car manufacturers do? Garmin really has it dialed in....
 

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Using Mp3 files with much less musical information will give me LOUD but not necessarily GOOD sound and with the inherent limitations to a sound system on a bike this is important to me. Distortion is much more prevalent with an Mp3 than it would be if we could use FLAC (or WAV or Apple Lossless) files.
If you're listening to music while riding the bike, you've got a lot more noise/distortion to worry about than mp3 vs FLAC. Engine/exhaust, wind, and road noise will be 1000x more of an issue in quality audio, not to mention the limited audio capabilities of the system & speakers (even if upgraded). IMO, there is no way you (or any other audiophile) could tell the difference in the two file types (assuming the mp3 has been stored at a decent bit rate) while riding.

If you really want quality audio, you'll opt to wear earbuds - not only do they reduce the outside noise levels, they will provide much greater dynamic range and better low & high end frequency response.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I am really not expecting an audiophile experience while riding necessarily. The issue is that the system/speakers will distort much more easily when playing an Mp3 vs. a FLAC file. I just want a quality source to help protect the amp and the speakers on the bike from distorting when I do turn it up to compensate for wind, noise, exhaust etc. Thus, I was happy to read I could play FLAC (or WAV) for this reason. The issue is that although the manual states that FLAC and WAV are acceptable files they are not.

For those that want to understand more of what I am referring to; rip a CD to 320 Mp3 (high bit rate for an Mp3) and play both the original CD and Mp3 through a decent home system. If you do a comparison and turn up both sources you will clearly hear distortion from the Mp3 sooner than the CD. Distortion can ruin your speakers and potentially the amp.
 

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I am really not expecting an audiophile experience while riding necessarily. The issue is that the system/speakers will distort much more easily when playing an Mp3 vs. a FLAC file. I just want a quality source to help protect the amp and the speakers on the bike from distorting when I do turn it up to compensate for wind, noise, exhaust etc. Thus, I was happy to read I could play FLAC (or WAV) for this reason. The issue is that although the manual states that FLAC and WAV are acceptable files they are not.

For those that want to understand more of what I am referring to; rip a CD to 320 Mp3 (high bit rate for an Mp3) and play both the original CD and Mp3 through a decent home system. If you do a comparison and turn up both sources you will clearly hear distortion from the Mp3 sooner than the CD. Distortion can ruin your speakers and potentially the amp.
Sorry, I'll have to disagree with your statement about damage to speakers/amp. In almost all cases, speaker damage is caused by clipping of the amplifier (causing a high output DC signal to be sent to the speaker). Yes, when this occurs, it is causing distortion to the speaker, but it isn't distortion due to bit-rate loss. Bit-rate loss distortion is much different than clipping distortion. Similarly, amplifier damage is almost always caused by over-driving the circuitry for an extended period of time and has nothing to do with the input signal. The amp can't tell (and doesn't care) if the signal is clean or distorted. Bit-rate loss distortion is extremely small, constantly changing variations relative to the original source which is much different than a long-duration over-driven output signal.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Bottom line is: I would still like to see Indian do a firmware update to allow FLAC or WAV files (that the manual clearly states will work) to play properly on the Ride Command. At the price point of the RM, I think it is only reasonable to expect that they provide what they state they are providing...
 

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Dredging up an old thread in the hopes that Polaris/Indian will address this issue with a firmware upgrade.



I think you meant 8GB Flash drive and yep I have the Indian 8GB Drive they gave us with the bike as well as a 16GB that works fine as well. My beef is that the manual clearly states that the 'Radio' aka Ride Command will accept and play FLAC files (WAV as well) and it clearly does not. FLAC files would allow me to listen to uncompressed music on the scooter which translates to less distortion as you turn it up. Using Mp3 files with much less musical information will give me LOUD but not necessarily GOOD sound and with the inherent limitations to a sound system on a bike this is important to me. Distortion is much more prevalent with an Mp3 than it would be if we could use FLAC (or WAV or Apple Lossless) files. FLAC files are essentially CD quality files and provide lossless music rather than lossy files such as Mp3. This is something Indian could and should address with a firmware update. And while they are at it, why not give us a GPS with a Garmin backbone as many car manufacturers do? Garmin really has it dialed in....
Yes 8GB, us old folks still think in MB, haven't moved on to GB, and as for TB???

 

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Dredging up an old thread in the hopes that Polaris/Indian will address this issue with a firmware upgrade.



I think you meant 8GB Flash drive and yep I have the Indian 8GB Drive they gave us with the bike as well as a 16GB that works fine as well. My beef is that the manual clearly states that the 'Radio' aka Ride Command will accept and play FLAC files (WAV as well) and it clearly does not. FLAC files would allow me to listen to uncompressed music on the scooter which translates to less distortion as you turn it up. Using Mp3 files with much less musical information will give me LOUD but not necessarily GOOD sound and with the inherent limitations to a sound system on a bike this is important to me. Distortion is much more prevalent with an Mp3 than it would be if we could use FLAC (or WAV or Apple Lossless) files. FLAC files are essentially CD quality files and provide lossless music rather than lossy files such as Mp3. This is something Indian could and should address with a firmware update. And while they are at it, why not give us a GPS with a Garmin backbone as many car manufacturers do? Garmin really has it dialed in....
I’ve been an audio mix/recording engineer for 40 yrs! What you state is correct, however, in a moving vehicle, especially a motorcycle with all associated noises, there is no way you could hear the difference between an mp3, flac or WAV file! There has been much double-blind testing done and many engineers have trouble hearing the difference in much quieter environments. If you can hear the distortion in an mp3 file played via Bluetooth to your headset you have better hearing than the best audio engineers in existence today!
 

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I just upgraded to a 2018 Chieftain and want to play lossless music also. So far I’ve been successful playing wav files from a flash drive, but haven’t figured out the file structure needed to group albums, artists, and songs so that they can be played in order (an entire CD) or searched easily. I’m not here to discuss the pros and cons of compression formats but I would like to figure out how to structure/tag lossless audio to play through the USB port and retain the song, disc, artist information. If I’m posting in the wrong thread please excuse me and I’ll start another one.
 

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I was successful in loading about 50 uncompressed recordings (including a few "double albums") into a USB3.0 64GB flash drive (~29gb of data so far). I first ripped the CD's to WAV files and then used a program called Bliss to tag the WAV files with the information needed for the Chieftain sound system to identify artist, album, and song titles.
 

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As an update, I've confirmed that 50GB of tagged WAV files (95 albums) will properly load, display, and play on the Ride Command system while still maintaining all menu functions.
 

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I know this is an old thread but hopefully someone can answer or assist? I have about 50 CDs on my USB used in my RM with about 5 that either appear with no songs listed or don't appear at all in the Ride Command selection screen. I spent hours trying to shorten the album titles, rename, delete composers...etc. with no progress. They are greatest hits like Marvin Gaye or mixed like Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 1, but Volume 2 works fine. Thanks.
 

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I know this is an old thread but hopefully someone can answer or assist? I have about 50 CDs on my USB used in my RM with about 5 that either appear with no songs listed or don't appear at all in the Ride Command selection screen. I spent hours trying to shorten the album titles, rename, delete composers...etc. with no progress. They are greatest hits like Marvin Gaye or mixed like Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 1, but Volume 2 works fine. Thanks.
I have played with some of this in the past but I do not have a Ride Command system on my RM. I do know if you try to modify some of the titles or names usually corrupts the file. Some older CDs or remanufactured CDs do not title or name the songs very well. This can fool the program that the system you are using to not show the songs in your index. I these cases you might need to download the song from Itunes or Amazon. Then transfer that into a MP3 format if it is not a format that the Ride Command will recognize. Dean
 

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There are a number of things to consider:

  • Some people report size problems (others say size doesn't matter) - try a smaller flash drive, 8 if you have 16 or 16 if you have 32.
  • Some say brand matters, sandisk/transcend/kinston/verbatim seem to be the go-to brands of flash drive (in that order)
  • format system does matter - fat32 is the likely safest format. I'm unsure if the ride command knows NTFS, unlikely to know exfat. (fat16 is old old junk now)
  • Then the MP3 file itself might matter, some files are 48k sample freq, others are 44100 - 44.1 is the cd standard, 48k is the newer "high def audio" - the RC might not "understand" 48k.
  • Actual bitrate won't matter - the gold standard of mp3 is 320kbps and all players will play that or lower.
  • Name should not matter except for length - RC might have a lower length limit than windows does (wins is 256 characters) so try to keep the file + folder length to under 32, maybe?
  • Special characters is often a no-no too - no @ # !, and so on... just keep the file name basic alphabet characters.

Umm... that's about all I can think of.
 

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In my experience sometimes the software that I use to write the metadata (“tag”) to each song file does not automatically tag the song, and the information has to be manually typed in. Most often just a few songs are missed, but occasionally entire CDs are not tagged. My Ride Command reads, displays, and plays a 256 GB flash drive full of tagged WAV files.
 

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I have played with some of this in the past but I do not have a Ride Command system on my RM. I do know if you try to modify some of the titles or names usually corrupts the file. Some older CDs or remanufactured CDs do not title or name the songs very well. This can fool the program that the system you are using to not show the songs in your index. I these cases you might need to download the song from Itunes or Amazon. Then transfer that into a MP3 format if it is not a format that the Ride Command will recognize. Dean
Thanks Dean
 

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There are a number of things to consider:

  • Some people report size problems (others say size doesn't matter) - try a smaller flash drive, 8 if you have 16 or 16 if you have 32.
  • Some say brand matters, sandisk/transcend/kinston/verbatim seem to be the go-to brands of flash drive (in that order)
  • format system does matter - fat32 is the likely safest format. I'm unsure if the ride command knows NTFS, unlikely to know exfat. (fat16 is old old junk now)
  • Then the MP3 file itself might matter, some files are 48k sample freq, others are 44100 - 44.1 is the cd standard, 48k is the newer "high def audio" - the RC might not "understand" 48k.
  • Actual bitrate won't matter - the gold standard of mp3 is 320kbps and all players will play that or lower.
  • Name should not matter except for length - RC might have a lower length limit than windows does (wins is 256 characters) so try to keep the file + folder length to under 32, maybe?
  • Special characters is often a no-no too - no @ # !, and so on... just keep the file name basic alphabet characters.

Umm... that's about all I can think of.
Thank you.
 

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In my experience sometimes the software that I use to write the metadata (“tag”) to each song file does not automatically tag the song, and the information has to be manually typed in. Most often just a few songs are missed, but occasionally entire CDs are not tagged. My Ride Command reads, displays, and plays a 256 GB flash drive full of tagged WAV files.
Mudboy, is there a 3rd party software music program that you are using other than the standard windows music program?
 

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Mp3 Tag 286 (or higher version, maybe, by now) does a great job of tag editing or removal.

It's not a player, just a tag editor. I tend to remove all tags 'cos they can bork players sometimes.
 
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