Monday, November 14, 2022

B&W Zeppelin versus Technics Sc50

 Je dois avouer que les qualités audio et le design de la B&W Zeppelin me font rêver depuis quelques années... mais yavait toujours un truc qui ne me convenait pas ... sauf la dernière version qui coche toutes les cases... commandée aujourd'hui ;)

 

 


 
_____________________________________________

Suite test comparatif avec ma Technics SC50 ....

 

 



Alors ... après 1 heure d'écoute comparative A/B : niveau "qualité globale" la  B&W Zeppelin est très très proche de la Technics SC50, on ne peux  pas dire que l'une est meilleure que l'autre.

La puissance est  équivalente, avec peut-être un léger avantage pour la Technics, mais c'est pas flagrant (théoriquement la B&W est 2.5 fois plus puissante que la Technics, ... c'est comme pour les amplis : tout dépend des conditions de mesure, Technics a tendance à sous-estimer les puissances )...

Du  point de vue "couleur" : plus d'équilibre sur la Zeppelin, basses plus  mesurées, un peu comme un baffle clos versus bass-reflex, mediums plus  en avant sur la Zeppelin. La technics a une courbe en Harman, la Zeppelin est plus "neutre".

Du  point de vue "stereo" : plus de "profondeur" sur la Technics et très  légèrement plus de détail dans l'aigu. Mais plus de "largeur" stéréo sur  la Zeppelin, et plus de détails dans les hauts mediums. La largeur  stéréo de cette B&W n'est pas loin de celle d'un système à deux enceintes, et comme  je l'ai déjà dit : sur l'orchestre c'est même relativement équivalent.

Léger  avantage à la Zeppelin en écoute audiophile, un peu plus reposante,  douce, sans pour autant sacrifier la dynamique qui est très bonne.

Excellente connexion qualité "lossless" en APTX Adaptive : rien à dire. J'ai comparé avec le mode Wifi DLNA, aucune différence.


______________________________________________

Retour après une semaine : je refais un test comparatif B&W Zeppelin versus Technics SC50, après avoir légèrement modifié l'EQ de la SC50 (+3dB medium / -3dB Bass) : ben ya pas photo : la SC50 ratrappe son retard en clarté des mediums, et la largeur stéréo dépasse celle de la Zeppelin.

Pour le reste : la qualité des aigus était déjà supérieure sur la SC50, de même que la profondeur stéréo et la puissance acoustique...

Donc je retourne la Zeppelin !!! clairement c'est une bonne enceinte, aucun doute, mais c'est indéniablement inférieur à la Technics SC50.

Sunday, November 6, 2022

New Zenwalk Current ISO 2022 07 November is ready

 Hi, 

It's been some time since the last Zenwalk Current ISO, so here it is.

Most packages have been rebuilt here or upstream. Since 18 years Zenwalk follow the same guideline : being the only true 100% Slackware compatible striped-down optimized system.

The main change in Zenwalk design lately, is the return of Mozilla Firefox as main browser. Due to the lack of improvements, especially performances issues and instability in Chromium. I also believe that privacy can be more easily achieved with Mozilla Firefox.

The Zenwalk "SlackBuild" packaging utility has also been updated so that it now allows to build Slackware packages from any source tarball without any configuration, as well as from any .DEB Debian binary as long as it's using the same toolchain and shared libs as Zenwalk, as well as from any Github URL.

You'll also notice some improvements in Netpkg : the multi-repository, dependency aware, package management system.

Have fun :)

JP


As usual don't forget to provide any support you want to the Slackware Linux project !

Download : zenwalk-current-221106.iso ( md5 )

Friday, February 4, 2022

Zenwalk 15.0 "Skywalker" milestone is ready

  Hi,

Following the release of the so long awaited Slackware 15.0 , here we go for the Zenwalk 15.0 "Skywalker", aka "It must be very stable after all this time" milestone. 

As usual for a milestone release, most packages have been rebuilt down here or upstream.

Desktop is the latest XFCE 4.16, with the special Zenwalk layout : this unusual NEXT/Windowmaker inspired dock system, with unique panel placement for ergonomic user access to the whole desktop area. This one of a kind desktop is optimized for modern wide screens ! 

What you get is a pure Slackware system with the following main changes :

- Focused on Desktop usage, XFCE and Chromium based 

- Just one app for each task, latest version of the most user-friendly apps

- Optimized in size / RAM footprint : Zenwalk is very fast on latest hardware and can even run fast on old PCs

- Flatpak and AppImage ready (almost all existing apps can be installed either via right-clicking on AppImg or flatpakref file)

- Automated packages updates (daily check at startup)

- Simplified setup with no nonsense animated pink ponies

Since 18 years : Zenwalk has always been a non profit project : all contributions and donations go to the Slackware Project. We all love that OS and want to thank Pat Volkerding for his fantastic work over the years (note : Pat has an enormous stock of Slack tee-shirts and other cool goodies to sell :p).

Please report bugs !

And have fun !


Immediate download (waiting for mirrors and torrents) :

zenwalk-15.0-220204.iso.md5

zenwalk-15.0-220204.iso


JP





Sunday, July 18, 2021

Zenwalk Current 15.0 18 Jul 2021 "Near Landing" milestone

 Hi,

Summer is there, Pat is about to release a candidate for Slackware 15.0 which will likely last for 2 years, and the current code seems as stable as it can be : so it's time for a Zenwalk Current release. 

It can be considered as a milestone release, most packages have been rebuilt down here or upstream, and it confirm some of the choices that where applied since the beginning of 2020 : Pipewire as the sound daemon, with mostly all existing Bluetooth codecs available from APTX to LDAC. 

Desktop is the latest XFCE 4.16, with the special Zenwalk layout (NEXT/Windowmaker inspired dock system, with unique panel placement for ultra-ergonomic use of the whole desktop place on modern wide screens). 

Kernel is 5.13.2, with Elogind and PAM, and thankfully : still no Systemd :).

Of course : Flatpak is present, and as usual, configured out of the box so that you can install nearly anything on Zenwalk.

Have fun !

Report bugs ;)

Immediate download (waiting for mirrors and torrents) :

zenwalk-current-15.0-210718.iso.md5

zenwalk-current-15.0-210718.iso

JP



Saturday, December 26, 2020

Pipewire replaces Pulseaudio in Zenwalk

Goodby Pulseaudio !

Quoting pipewire.org : Pipewire provides a low-latency, graph based processing engine on top of audio and video devices that can be used to support the use cases currently handled by both pulseaudio and JACK. PipeWire was designed with a powerful security model that makes interacting with audio and video devices from containerized applications easy. Alongside Wayland and Flatpak we expect PipeWire to provide a core building block for the future of Linux application development.

To make the switch on your Zenwalk or Slackware system : just uninstall pulseaudio and install the Zenwalk pipewire package (pipewire-0.3.18-x86_64-201226.txz). Pipewire emulates Pulseaudio libraries and daemon : so all your applications will work seamlessly including the pavucontrol mixer.

Furthermore : I ported my Pulseaudio patch for SBC XQ (much better than AptX) to Pipewire : so you will have CD quality Bluetooth audio in Zenwalk or Slackware.

Have fun !





Thursday, December 24, 2020

AppImage for VLC 3 Media Player

Hello,

Maybe you like VLC and don't want to install Qt5 just for that ?

Here's the fully platform independent AppImage for VLC 3.x :

vlc-3.0.11.1-x86_64-1alien.AppImage

Hopefully it should work on any distribution without any dependency.

Have fun :)

JP



 

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

AppImage for KID3 tag editor

 Hi,

Since there's no reason to install the whole Qt5 toolkit, just to run KID3 Tag Editor : here's the AppImage !

kid3-3.8.4-x86_64-1.AppImage

This AppImage should run on any Linux distro... and note that you have "1 click" menu integration in latest Zenwalk desktop (you'll have to update zenwalk-desktop package and then copy the new "uca.xml" thunar actions file from /etc/xdg/Thunar to your home profile) ;)

Enjoy !!





Thursday, December 10, 2020

 Zenwalk Current 15.0 Santa Claus edition

 Zenwalk Current 15.0 10 12 2020 "Santa Claus" edition is available.

In short you get the latest Slackware current system with elogind, pam and the release candidate yet stable XFCE version 4.16 : installed in 15 minutes on your drive.

The Zenwalk Desktop is what we believe to be the most modern and user friendly desktop environment available for computers in 2021 : full "dock based" window management, designed for modern ultra wide displays.

Plethora of applications and games are ready to go with Flatpak or dependency aware package manager.

Please report any bugs :)

Have fun !

JP


Immediate download (waiting for mirrors and torrents) :

zenwalk-current-15.0-201210.iso.md5

zenwalk-current-15.0-201210.iso






Tuesday, July 21, 2020

AppImage for pulseaudio-dlna

Hi,

I created an AppImage for pulseaudio-dlna :

pulseaudio-dlna-0.5.3.AppImage

No need to keep Python 2 just for this, it runs without any dependencies.

Have fun
jp


Tuesday, July 14, 2020

2nd video review of Zenwalk 15.0 Milestone 2020


Here's a nice video review which can also be useful as a step by step setup tutorial (thanks to DJ Ware).

Note that the DJ didn't use netpkg : the Zenwalk package manager, and he should have  ;) (flathub is NOT a package manager : it's more to be considered as a "play store").


Friday, July 3, 2020

A new EFI administration tool in Zenwalk

Today : a new tool to manage EFI boot entries has been added.

Have fun

JP


Thursday, July 2, 2020

Zenwalk 15.0 - milestone 2020 07 02 is ready

Hi,

Once a year, Zenwalk Current is considered stable enough for a "milestone" release, here's Zenwalk 15 milestone 2020.

Based on Slackware Current July 2020, Zenwalk 15 milestone 2020 is fully compatible.

As usual, the goal is to provide fast simple setup, refined desktop, selection of the best apps, ease of use, with full respect of the Slackware philosophy.

The news are :

  • New XFCE desktop based on the latest XFCE 4.14+ with many tweaks providing the widest possible workspace for modern full HD displays
  • Introduction of Flatpak support for installing any application from Flathub or Gnome Desktop
  • New rewritten Netpkg package manager for instant access to thousand of packages from the Slackware community, and keep the system up to date with one liner command
  • PAM authentication system thanks to upstream
  • Kernel 5.4.50
  • Improved SBC XQ codec in Pulseaudio providing APTX-HQ like high-fidelity music quality
  • Chromium Web browser v83.0.4103.61 , intensively used for "everything it can do" : Web browsing, Chromecast streaming, Webapps, Webmail, PDF viewing, image viewing, etc ..."


The ISO image setup is intended to be launched from a USB stick (see the SlackWiki for some tips).

First downloads are here :



You can consult the full Changelog for more information. See also announcements and other stories in the BLOG section.

As usual : donations and contributions of any kind go to Patrick Volkerding. Zenwalk remains non profit.


Have fun
JP



Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Flatpak is available on Zenwalk

Flatpak is the freedesktop.org software deployment and package management standard for Linux, offering a sandbox environment in which users can run application software in isolation from the rest of the system.

In Zenwalk : Flatpak is managed through the App Outlet application (https://app-outlet.github.io/).

You can also browse https://flathub.org/apps, find what you're looking for (ie : VLC) and just launch "flatpak install VLC" in an unprivileged user terminal.

Have fun !!


Saturday, June 27, 2020

Netpkg 7.0 : simpler, faster tool to manage packages

Netpkg 7.0 has been released.

Netpkg is the original network package management tool provided in Zenwalk since 2005, and was the first tool of this kind available for Slackware back in the days.

Over the years, following users requests, netpkg has evolved into a graphical (GTK) application with CLI counterpart.

Netpkg is Slackgnostic ;) : it work for any Slackware system.

The CLI version has proven to be easier for the user, is faster, and requires no dependencies except bash, wget, and a few command line utilities found on any Slackware installation :  so it can run in level 3 with just the "ap" packages installed (could even run from the setup from a chrooted mountpoint).

Nowadays graphical applications are more and more handled through Appimages packages and such formats, so the graphical Netpkg is not needed anymore.

So here it is, deeply improved, more powerful, easier to use than any other package management tool : automatic system update, dependency resolution, multi-repository, with full-text search, .new config files management, local packages removal and reinstallation, etc...

Have fun :)


Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Create your private Hifi streaming service

How to create a private Hifi streaming service?

If you have a quality and relatively large music library, it's a shame to have bought all these albums and to have to subscribe to a streaming service provider to listen to them when you are on the go ...

Maybe have you ever wondered if it would be possible to create a private streaming service and thus replace Spotify, Qobuz, Tidal, etc ... to play your own media library in CD quality?

It's possible and quite simple, you just need to have:
  • A NAS server: for example : a Linux NAS, or a Windows NAS, or a Synology NAS, or a simple Linux or Windows PC ... or even any Android mobile with sufficient storage capacity.
  • BubbleUPNP Server (a software available for free download, installed on the previous NAS). BubbleUPNP Server is a UPNP proxy: it transforms your NAS into an ultra versatile DLNA broadcast server and "Internet ready"
  • BubbleUPNP Application on Android mobile / tablet (~ 4 € on Play Store) and / or Foobar2000 on Windows


BubbleUPNP Server is available in the Zenwalk repository (package is for Slackware as well).

The configuration of BubbleUPNP is simple and well documented :


BubbleUPNP Server is configured graphically via the browser (see screenshot below).



At the Internet BOX level: add two port redirects 58050 and 58051, as illustrated below.




BubbleUPNP allows:

  • Access your library from your home (FLAC, AAC, OGG, ...) with a very ergonomic reader interface, bookmarks, multiple customization settings, playlists, etc ... and by adding the compatibility of certain file formats to your Chromecast or DLNA receivers.
  • Access this same library (FLAC, AAC, OGG, ...) from the Internet (train, office, vacation ...) in a secure and authenticated way with the same ergonomic player interface. In fact we do not realize the transition to Internet mode: it is transparent: your library is available from the same app "everywhere".
  • From the Android BubbleUPNP app: stream to any speaker / amp connected to the network, Chromecast or DLNA, or via Bluetooth (BubbleUPNP Android is one of the few players that supports almost all connected speakers / amplifiers).



So you won't have ripped your CDs for nothing;) ... and 1 year of Qobuz "Hires" subscription saved will allow you to buy a few dozen albums in order to integrate them into "your" BubbleUPNP media library (Hires it too, if you want, or in any case CD quality, because the Hires doesn't bring anything ... but that's another story ...). You can share it with all your family and friends: in private.
A simple deposit of FLAC files on the NAS and they are instantly available via BubbleUPNP.

Don't forget to make a small donation to the developer, if you want ...

BubbleUPNP Server is available in the Zenwalk repository (package is for Slackware as well)



Friday, January 3, 2020

MFP - Music Folder Player


MFP is folder oriented Music Library manager and player.  It provides most features expected from a Music Player.

MFP is the answer for good and latency-less Chromecast support in Linux. It requires Chromium, Apache and PHP to run.

Media files (flac, mp3, ogg, opus, aac, ....) should all be contained in the "Music" folder in your home directory (you can create a symlink ~/Music -> your_music-folder).

Just launch the Music Library Player application menu entry (in the Multimedia category), and have fun ! :)

See:  https://github.com/ltGuillaume/MusicFolderPlayer

The package for Slackware & Zenwalk : mfp-1.0-x86_64-200103.txz




Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Audio quality of SBC XQ Bluetooth audio codec

SBC XQ provides a better sound quality than APTX-HQ. It's considered transparent : 100% CD quality.

A good article about Bluetooth codecs on soundexpert.org

SBC XQ is available from scratch in Zenwalk ;)

Enjoy the best BT "lossless" quality available on GNU Linux !

JP

Here is the patch, for those who want to use it to oher distributions : https://gitlab.freedesktop.org/Hyperion/pulseaudio/tree/SBC-XQ