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Zoom Player v5.00 Technology Preview


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#1 bLight

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Posted 01 February 2006 - 11:43 PM

Preview version, stops working in April

Version 5 of Zoom Player marks many changes. Both visual and technical.

Lets start with the new media library full-screen interface:
Posted Image
(Graphics by Godwin)

The Media Library interface has been rewritten, split into multiple screens (one screen for Filtering Selection, one for category listing, one for file listing and one for command control (not yet implemented)). Easily accessible using the right/left controls.

All navigation interfaces are undergoing transformation (not yet complete), with the goal of having them all inter-connected under the new Main Navigator.

Besides the rest of the changes listed below, there are many invisible changes to the way ZP stores information on file listings. This is one of the reasons for this preview, there have been major underlaying code changes that may have introduced bugs into how files entries are manged within ZP and I would like everything to be tested as much as possible.

The reason behind these changes is so new features could be introduced, such as sorting in the media library, sorting by new fields such as Genre (not implemented yet). Basically making Zoom Player much easier to extend with regards to meta-data information.

And lastly, during the last few years, we havn't had a clear guideline with regards to how registration will work with future releases. With v5, we have formilized a new registration guideline. Registered users will be able to use upcoming versions within 1 year of purchase. The new guideline comes into effect with this preview version of Zoom Player 5.

Download Zoom Player v5.00 Technical Preview (fix4)

Rest of the Change List from v4.51 final:
 * Smart Media Mode (previously Customized Media Mode) has been
    vastly simplified.  In the simple mode, only the available
    profiles and the currently used filters are visible.  If the
    currently used filter matches a profile (which it most always
    will), the profile will be highlighted.

    Smart Media Mode is now available in all version of Zoom Player
    to a lesser degree.

  * The Auto-Get Duration for media files has been rewritten to
    get the duration in the background (working only on unused CPU
    cycles), allowing you to load massive play lists without having
    to wait.

    Getting durations for media files also supports more formats
    and is now enabled by default.

  * New "ZPS" Skin Installation System.  Simply opening any
    "ZPS" file (file with a .zps extension) will run Zoom Player
    and prompt you to install the skin.

  * New Functions allowing you to play the Next and Previous files
    in the same directory as the currently playing file with a
    matching file extension.  These functions are now assigned to the
    "PgUp" and "PgDn" navigational keys when navigator interfaces
    are not visible.

    For example, when viewing "MyImage.jpg" in a directory that looks
    like this:

    MyImage.jpg
    MyImage.avi
    MyImage2.jpg

    Pressing "PgDn" will show "MyImage2.jpg", skipping "MyImage.avi"
    These functions enhance Zoom Player's capability as an image viewer.

  * New Function (Shift+"L") allowing you to show/hide the all Control Bar
    buttons (without the need to select/remove which buttons are visible).
    This function has also replaced the Hide/Show All Control Bar buttons
    on the Control Bar Context-Menu.  You will now be presented with
    a "Hide All Button" toggle (with a checkbox indicating ON/OFF state).

  * New Function "fnDeleteCurrent", Assigned by default to the Delete key
    (when the navigational interfaces are not in use), allowing you to
    erase the currently playing file (with confirmation).  

  * New Function (Advanced Options / OSD / OSD Area), allowing you
    to force all OSD Displays (Navigators, OSD Actions, Control Bar,
    etc...) to display relative to a specific position on screen
    (while in fullscreen).  When enabled, it allows you to Zoom/Move
    the video without it having an effect on the positioning of the
    On Screen Display elements.

  * New Setting (Skin Selector / Save Position).  When enabled,
    each skin's position (window position and size) will be remembered
    on an individual basis.

  * New Setting (Advanced Options / Values / Aspect Ratio) allowing you
    specify which monitor you want Source Relative Stretch (Pixel Aspect
    Ratio) to apply to.

  * New Setting (Advanced Options / Values / Interface) allowing you
    to blank (black-out) all secondary monitors (any monitor not
    currently playing video).

  * New Setting (Advanced Options / Values / Interface) allowing you
    to enable the Internal Screen Saver for Audio-Only files (so that
    the Internal Screen Saver would kick-in even if the file is playing).

  * The GoTo dialog now allows you to input a time to seek to using
    an HH:MM:SS.ms structure.  The input is pretty flexible, allowing
    variants such as H:M:S, M:S, S.ms, etc...

  * Pressing Ctrl+"V" on the GoTo dialog pastes the clipboard value
    into the "H:M:S.ms" Time field.

  * New Setting on the GoTo dialog allowing you to keep the dialog
    open even after seeking to a new location.
    (Useful for FanSub Editors)

  * The current time in MS is now visible on the GoTo dialog.

  * New "Remove Non-Exisiting Entries" button on the Play History
    interface, allowing you to remove old entries where the file no
    longer exists on the system.

  * New "FolderImage" Skin-Script function allowing you to draw the
    folder image anywhere within the main user interface.

  * The "VolumeExData", "BalanceExData" and "RateExData" Skin-Script
    functions can now use a Target parameter allowing you to place a
    Volume, Balance and Rate Control interfaces on the Play List Editor,
    Equalizer and Control Bar.

  * SHOUTcasted audio information (Title, Author, URL, Copyright,
    Description) can now be accessed by the following Skin-Script tags:
    <trackname>, <artistname>, <urllink>, <copyright>, <comment>.

  * New "<Volume>" Skin-Script tag, allowing you to display the current
    Audio Volume level percentage (0-100).

  * New "<FileIndex>" Skin-Script tag, allowing you to display the
    currently playing file's index number.

  * New "cBarTLMinWidth" Skin-Script constant allowing you to specify
    the minimum width of the Control Bar's TimeLine (default 64 pixels).

  * The Skin Selection dialog now has an "Uninstall" button.

  * New "RN" tag for the Zoom Player Play List file format (".zpl")
    instructing Zoom Player to randomize the play list once loaded.

  * New Communication API Messages "2610, 2611, 2620, 2621, 2630, 2631,
    2640, 2641" allowing you to query the current video display area
    located within fullscreen mode and to set a new location/size.

  * New Communication API Messages "2700, 2701" allowing you to get
    and set the current Play Rate (Media Mode Fast Play/Slow Motion and
    DVD Mode Fast Forward/Slow Motion/Rewind rates).

  * New Communication API Message "5130" allowing you to execute
    navigational control functions.

  * New Communication API Message "1450" allowing you to request
    the Unique DVD Identifier information.

  * New DVD "Additional Filter", the "Trombettworks Channel Downmixer",
    http://www.trombettworks.com/directshow.php

  * The Nero DVD Navigator is now a DVD Navigator option.

  * New Smart Media profiles for several uncommon AVI/MOV codecs.

  * New Smart Media profiles for WavPack Audio.

  + The WMV DRM license aquisition code has been improved and you
    should no longer be required to use Windows Media Player to
    aquire licenses.

  + When running a new version for the first time, you will now be
    prompted only for important missing decoders.  The full list
    can still be found in the options dialog.

  + The missing decoders list in the Advanced Options dialog has been
    split into a list of Imporant decoders and All decoders in order
    to emphasize that not all decoders listed are required for
    general day to day media playback.  The Simple Options dialog will
    only show the Important decoders.

  + The Default Play List skin has been tweaked a bit for usability
    and clarity.

  + The File and Media Library Navigators will now dynamically update
    their content when a removable media is inserted/removed.

  + The Blanking Navigator will now allow you to Ebable/Disable Blanking.

  + The Control Bar will now have a minimum width of 64 pixels for the
    timeline and whatever space the active Control Bar buttons take.

  + The Mouse Cursor over the Volume, Rate Control, Balance and
    Equazlier bars will now use the "Hand Point" mouse cursor.

  + The Fast Play/Slow Motion rates have changes slightly.

  + Showing the Control Bar now hides the navigator interfaces.

  + Better streaming support.

  + Customized Media Playback has been renamed to "Smart Media Playback".

  + Updated Smart Media profiles to account for Elecard v4's change
    of filter identifications. 

  + The "Mouse Wheel" section of the Options Dialog has been renamed
    to "Mouse" and the "Mouse Toggles" section has moved under it.

  + The Skinning Constants "<filename>", "<filetitle>" and "<filebase>"
    in DVD Mode will now display the DVD Title instead of the file name
    (which when playing DVDs always points to "VIDEO_TS.IFO".  This is
    simply more informative.

  + Pressing Enter in the GoTo dialog without any fields filled will
    now seek to the current position (useful for Subbing).

  + The Information Dialog (Press "I") now shows an approximate bitrate
    as calculated using size of the file being played when DirectShow
    doesn't return a valid bitrate.

  + "Play List Editor display moves to follow currently playing track"
    setting now centers the currently playing track within the list
    (instead of having it appear at the top of the list).

  + The Smart Media Mode Source Filter selection now allows you to add
    DMO filters as post processors.

  + The Scene-Cut and GoTo interfaces now require the use of
    Zoom Player Professional.

  - Audio Renderers containing "00" in their device name (such as the
    "SB Audigy 2 ZS Audio [A400]") could have disabled audio under some
    conditions.

  - Flash files should now play in the proper aspect ratio on display
    devices that do not use square pixels.

  - Possible fix for VMR9 Renderless Exclusive fullscreen mode where
    icons may have flashed.

  - Zoom Player can now use/display BMP files created with Photoshop.
    (Recent versions of PhotoShop create improperly formatted BMP files).

  - Zoom Player user interface elements will now snap to the Visible
    Work Area (Task Bar rather than the Monitor border).

  - When Zoom Player was set to save its configuration file
    locally, or when using an alternative window name,
    Zoom Player would not load files from external programs if
    it was already open.

  - Auto-Disable DVD Subtitles and Preferred DVD Subtitles are now
    mutually exclusive (with warning message).

  - When Detached, The Control Bar can now be resized from the right
    as well as the left sides of the interface.

  - Better handling of filters that change the duration of the
    currently playing media in real-time (such as TSFileSource).

  - You should now be able to erase the currently playing file from
    within the Media Library Navigator.

  - Mid-Stream aspect ratio changes should now work better (was not
    working well when switching DVB TV-Channels).

  - Switching to Audio Mode from DVD Mode and then back to DVD Mode
    would load the Media Mode skin instead of the DVD Mode skin.

  - A few stability tweaks to the skin parsing engine (better handling
    of badly written skin-script).

  - The setting to prevent Zoom Player from using Smart Media
    Playback by the extension of the file being played was not
    working properly.

  - Fixed a possible stability issues with Smart Media Playback
    and problematic filters.

  - A System-Sound would play when trying to exit Zoom Player using
    the TCP Interface.

  - The Definition File "SetAudioSync" setting wasn't being applied
    when playing DVDs.

  - Using the "/F" or "/Z" parameters while Zoom Player is already
    fullscreen on a secondary monitor could cause the display to move
    to the primary monitor.    

  - The Change Resolution on Fullscreen feature may not have properly
    covered the video area.

  - The Search area background color on the Play List Editor was not
    being set properly for the default skin.

  - When ejecting DVDs as they are playing, Zoom Player may have tried
    to automatically replay them causing a DVD Not Found error to pop.

  - The Navigator Background skin code definition would only accept
    the image if it existed in the root skin directory.

  - The Navigator Background skin code definition was ignored if no
    icon file was set.

  - Automatic Save/Restore of the last position for ".dvr-ms" and ".ts"
    files was not working correctly.

  - Scene-Cut would malfunction under certain conditions (especially
    when trying to use it in combination with ".dvr-ms" files).

  - The Play List Editor Window sizes would glitch if closing
    Zoom Player while the Play List Editor was maximized.

  - When Zoom Player was set to disable the Windows Screen Saver
    in fullscreen mode, it could under some conditions cause
    hardware powerdown not to activate after Zoom Player was closed.

  - When scrolling on the Play History or the Key Editor, the
    screen will now update while scrolling.

  - Audio files will now be listed in the Play History even if the
    setting not to remember the last position for audio files is enabled.

  - Removing the currently playing file from the play list would not
    clear the file name from the Task Bar or Tray Icon.

  - The "<track>" Skin Script value wasn't being cleared when a file
    was closed.

  - Sorting the play list could lead to the currently playing item
    highlight on the play list editor to show the wrong file.

  - Moving items in the Play List up/down could fail on unicode files.

  - The Gradient skin commands were not being effected by the skin tint.

  - Several Option dialog tabs may have not translated properly when
    a unicode translation was used.

  - Using a forced duration value in a Zoom Player Play List file would
    carry over the duration to the next file in the play list if it
    did not have a forced duration.

  - The Pop-Up OSD Action message would not show Unicode characters
    properly under some conditions.

  - Pressing Enter in the Station Navigator when the navigator contained
    no entires would have caused a crash.

  - Opening a URL from the command line would have caused it to open
    using uppercase, which some servers would not accept as a correct
    location for the item.
  
  - Some cosmetic glitches when using XP Themes.


#2 bLight

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Posted 04 February 2006 - 06:34 PM

I have removed every post on this thread.
I have read them all and your concerns will be addressed.

zp500pre2.exe linked above is fully functional, except for a timeout during April 2006. This is only a preview of what's coming in v5.

Please do not discuss anything other than stability issues. We will post a full registration guideline in March.

#3 generalleoff

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Posted 04 February 2006 - 07:30 PM

The file navigator seems severely broken right now. The "previous" option either just wont show up or when it does just wont work. Changing sub folders does not work. Not all files and folders are showing up.

I'm sure you are aware of it but telling you just in case.

Also something that's not so important at this stage but I'm not sure if you are aware of it. The Gabest MPEG Audio decoder is also capable of decoding AAC audio. Rather good at it too it seems.

#4 Mastiff

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Posted 04 February 2006 - 07:35 PM

Thanks for the new version! I have two things: Going from playing fullscreen mode with renderless to windowed mode creates a division by zero error. And you probably know this already, but I see no OSD or anything in renderless in this version either.

#5 generalleoff

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 12:26 AM

Also MP3 playback has been shot to hell. Lots and lots of static. My system has major sound issues anyway due to dumb ass Creative drivers screwing up and I havent botherd to fix it though so I'm not sure if this will be Zoom Players fault. The thing is it was working just before installing this preview though.

#6 midiboy

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 01:49 AM

Hi Blight,

cool, thanks for the new version without the nag! :D Thanks for listening !

Installed it, tried it a few times, worked great but now, suddenly it won´t start anymore. I mean the zplayer.exe. I copied it to another directory , started it from there and again, it does not start (there is no zplayer.exe process yet started, I checked).

If I copy the old 4.51 exe in the zplayer dir, it starts up fine but the new one won´t start anymore, also no error message, nothing ... strange :P

edit: using default settings did not help either. Reinstalling the new version also does not help. So it should be something that changed on my system that makes the new version no start anymore. But what ? Also why is the old version still working ? And no, I did not set the system time to April :P


Bye,
Alex

#7 bLight

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 02:47 AM

I'm shutting it down for a bit, this version has missing code which will eventually pop a dialog saying that ZP has failed integrity check.

generalleoff:
I don't think the new version would cause mp3 sound error, double check which audio renderer you are using.

Mastiff:
did you try it with an xvid file, with ffdshow as the decoder set to only output rgb32?

#8 bLight

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 04:08 AM

Ok, the file navigator should be fixed, as well as the integrity check issue. The link on the first post has been updated.

If you did use the file navigator, you'll need to resynch it by going to the root path of each drive (pressing enter on the drive listing at the bottom of the file list, not on the left pane).

Mastiff:
I couldn't recreate the divide by zero, and I'm using a laptop with ATI Mobility X600 (I think it's the same thing as a Radeon 9600). And I did get the controlbar to show in renderless mode even on this ATI as long as the output is RGB32 (didn't try DVD, only media files at this point).

Midi:
You're not starting it with your script, right? If you are, you won't see the messages. My guess is that you should have seen the integrity fail message and your script might have closed it.

#9 generalleoff

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 04:17 AM

Yea that fixed the file navagator. Also saw the new AAC profile too.

[edit]

My MP3 decoder is the gabest decoder, but lets just scratch that one until I fix windows. Going to reinstall it Monday after the Super Bowl.

#10 midiboy

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 10:10 AM

You're not starting it with your script, right? If you are, you won't see the messages. My guess is that you should have seen the integrity fail message and your script might have closed it.


Hi Blight,

hehe, no. I did not use the script :P That was just for your first version :D

I will try fix 3 ....

edit2: no, fix3 does not start either. I completely reinstalled it twice, deleted the ZP registry keys etc. ... no chance ;-) the 4.51 version still works as usual ..

Very strange :P

Bye,
Alex

#11 midiboy

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 11:25 AM

ha!

I found the solution, Blight ... it is called Data Execution Prevention (DEP) :P
If I add ZoomPlayer to the exceptions list, it starts up again.

The old version seems to work with or without DEP enabled.

I am still a bit new to this DEP thing. I got my new board and CPU a few days ago (Asus A8N SLI Premium and AMD 3800+ X2) and it seems like DEP causes a few problems with some apps. Mediaportal also seems to have problems if I don´t add it to the exceptions list.

I wonder if I should turn it off completely. What do you think ?

Nevetheless, maybe it is a good idea to make ZP compatible, this would reduce your support time I guess :P

Bye,
Alex

#12 netwolf

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 04:47 PM

I'm not an expert in this field, but IMO and from what I know about DEP, all applications should be written in a way that DEP can stay enabled.

WRT the new version: is it possible to install it next to version 4.51 without changing settings, filter chains etc. of the old version?
I mean, is it possible to play with the new version without changing anything related to the previous installation (separate registry keys etc.) ?

#13 SicteR

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 05:05 PM

WRT the new version: is it possible to install it next to version 4.51 without changing settings, filter chains etc. of the old version?
I mean, is it possible to play with the new version without changing anything related to the previous installation (separate registry keys etc.) ?

http://www.inmatrix.com/zplayer/faq/faq_entry0054.shtml

#14 netwolf

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 05:23 PM

Thanks a lot, SicteR, I guess that's exactly what I need to do :)

#15 Mastiff

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 08:12 PM

Blight, sorry. I only have DVDs, no media files to test with. I'll see if I can download a DiVX file or some cr*p like that (don't like them much, DVD's are already too compressed in my opinion!) and test with. But it doesn't work with DVD's yet - this on my laptop with an ATI mobility x700 (gotta go one better than you...). Anyway, I'll shut up about that till you have something that works in YV12, which is what my FFDShow needs.

#16 SicteR

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 09:34 PM

But it doesn't work with DVD's yet - this on my laptop with an ATI mobility x700

It does work with DVDs, at least here it does, as long as you have RGB32 set as output colorspace in ffdshow. Well sorta; OSD works great, control bar doesn't work at all except displaying timeline which IIRC is all you want it to do. Right-click menu doesn't work either but I guess it isn't supposed to yet :)

#17 generalleoff

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Posted 05 February 2006 - 09:47 PM

well reinstalling windows fixed that mp3 issue.

#18 mitko

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Posted 06 February 2006 - 02:48 AM

I think I've found a couple of bugs in the new Navigators interface

1. Try the following steps.
- start ZP
- show the media navigator
- using the left arrow button go all the way to the main menu (navigator selection menu (Media; File; ...))
- select GoTo for example and then close it
- show the media navigator again
- using the left arrow button go all the way to the main menu again
Now the GoTo Navigator is highlighted, but if I press the down arrow button thinking that I'll go to the Playlist navigator the FileBrowser Navigator get's selected. I think that somehow ZP remembers the last used navigator but doesn't have it selected in the list - only hightlighted.

2. (it's in 4.51 too). When the "Station List" navigator is shown and there is no stations in it pressing "Enter" brings "List out of bounds (0)" error.

3. No navigators in Fullscreen mode !?!?!
When I try to show any navigator (either using KBD shortcut or Popup menu) it's not visible in fullscreen mode - only in zoom mode. Probably related - when I try to show the Media Library Nav in Fullscreen mode I get "Floating point devision by zero". When I press Escape 3 times I get "Scan line index out of range" when video is playing or when not - another "Division by zero" (but not Floating point).

Edit:
The reason for this was that I've only checked the "Enable OSD-Display Area Locking" leaving the Width and Height equal to zeros. Nevertheless there should be a waring message in the configuration not these errors when using ZP.

4. The OSD ID3 mp3 duration shown in fullscreen addressed here http://forum.inmatrix.com/index.php?showtopic=3207&st=60# is still broken
:)

Also a question:
What happened to the "Use "All" Category (Media Lib Nav)"? Is it ignored? Because whatever I do I can't make it disapear

#19 odysseus

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Posted 06 February 2006 - 04:04 AM

Blight, I just wanted to reiterate my comment from the previous run of this thread, it got lost with that, if it wouldn't be a trouble for you to do so that it would be useful if the DRM window could have the "Yes" button highlighted by default. There doesn't seem to be any way currently to get it highlighted by hitting Tab or anything else, the only way to select it is to manually drag the mouse to it. This isn't so much a stability issue but I would forsee any one of us that uses a remote with ZP will certainly ask for it. Thanks in advance for anything you can do regarding this.

#20 mitko

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Posted 06 February 2006 - 10:23 PM

Blight,
recently I got some H.264 movies that have a Media SubType {34363248-0000-0010-8000-00AA00389B71} which is not defined as one of the subtypes for H.264. If there is a way to confirm that this subtype is not a mistake will you add it in the list for H.264. I'm almost sure that this is really a H.264 because both FFDShow show it as such and decode it as such. It's the same with CoreAVC Decoder. So it has to be a H.264