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Aug 31, 00 at 1:52amEntity

We have posted Ether's review of RCA's Lyra Portable MP3 Player. Please let us know what you think about his article.

Here's the link:

RCA Lyra Review

Thread Recap (last 10 posts from newest to oldest)

Dec 1, 04 at 9:51pm

hi, at least on XP Windows media player will convert the files for you if you use the right click copy to device option.

Apr 21, 04 at 4:38pm

I hate to turn this area into a "help me" section but this is kinda an emergency (in my book).

I bought a new 40GB lyra for a month long trip i'm about to take. It worked fine for 2 months then when i'd boot it up, after about 10 seconds of the "RCA Lyra" screen i get the message "Failed to load files! Reset unit to resume operation. Update LyraHD system files if problem persists."

I have no idea what to do--I can't update any files on the lyra b/c the lyra won't boot and therefore my computer can't recognize it when i connect it. Resetting it using the little hole just turns it back on and gives me the message again. Help a little girl out please Thank you in advance.

Apr 14, 04 at 1:07am


Aug 29, 02 at 2:18am

[quote][originator=Yves]How do you convert mp3s to mpx ?

The transfer thru RealJukeBox just doesn't work (files just produce noise).


I have the same problem, no music, only noise. what can I do?
Thanks for the help.

Aug 2, 01 at 4:18pm

How do you convert mp3s to mpx ?

The transfer thru RealJukeBox just doesn't work (files just produce noise).


Dec 4, 00 at 12:32am

For more info on SDMI see and if you bought one of these Lyra's and are unhappy about the hidden "feature" please feel free to email me directly.
I bought one of these Lyra's and am very unhappy about the
hidden "feature" and would like to email you directly.

But I couldn't figure out how to email you... Where can I
find your email address?

Sep 3, 00 at 12:31pm

Maybe things would be better if our memory technology wasn't so primative. We would have like 256MB CF cards that could store a lot more music or something. I too would be interested in seeing some reviews of CD MP3 players.

But then those products can't claim "no moving parts" now can they?

Sep 2, 00 at 6:10pm
Steve Petrov

In fairness to MP3 players in general flash card transfer is so fast that you don't need 20 flash cards if you're into downloading different playlists from your HD or CD-R periodically.

This,however, relates to my major gripe about the Lyra and many other "MP3 players." I use the i2Go player because I can quickly and easily drag and drop my .mp3 files from Windoze Explorer to my cf flash card. (This should be possible in LINUX too; I just haven't tried it yet.)

BUT... the RCA Lyra is really not an MP3 player. It's an .mpx player!!!

The Lyra requires you to use some bundled proprietary software to translate your .mp3 files into .mpx files before you can play them. This means you can drag and drop your files from Explorer (you have to waste HD space with a piece of buggy software), you can't use LINUX or DOS and you are at the mercy of the proprietary software. If RCA were an honest company they would sell their product as an .mpx player.

All of the above is meant to fascilitate their anti-copying scheme called SDMI which reads the serial number on your cf card everytime you convert a song from .mp3 to .mpx

For more info on SDMI see and if you bought one of these Lyra's and are unhappy about the hidden "feature" please feel free to email me directly.

Aug 31, 00 at 8:07pm

OK, let me put it this way -
Who cares about an mp3 player that needs those VEERY EXPENSIVE and VERY SMALL CAPACITY memory cards?
That's a rip-off!
They all say that you can have up to 2 hours of “CD quality “ music on the 64MB card ( which cost much more than 100 bucks ).

“CD quality” ? We all perfectly know that if you have an MP3 file coded at 128kbps(which are most common on the internet) it takes approximately 1Mb per minute, so it makes this card hold only ~64 minutes of audio – less than a regular CD.

And – “CD quality” – who ever came up with this crazy comparison ???
Well, if you listen to a CD on $20 PC speakers and some cheap audio card – than the 128kbps MP3 will sound the same as CD does. But if you have ears some descent audio card and a nice pair of speakers ( let’s take for instance SB Live and Klipsch V2-400) – you will hear the difference! And it will make you forget about 128kbps MP3s – because the background noise and will drive you crazy.

Since I did that – all the MP3s that I rip are 256Kbps ripped by LAME codec. For some people 256 is not enough and they go all the way up to 320kbps or prefer an original CD.
At least at 256kbps all the extra noise disappears and you can here just the music. So at 256kbps you can think of 30 minutes on 64MB card. Sucks, doesn’t it?

Wait for more companies that will release MP3 CD players. The Kenwood and AIWA already have one for cars, but they are very expensive. Bunch of no-name companies sell the same model of low end MP3 CD player for about $100 bucks, but the drawback is that it doesn’t support high beat rates. There are a couple more of players on the market which also don’t support high beat rates.

If you read this – you probably all heard about MamboX and where looking forward to it. They been feeding us with promises since last December – VBR, beat rates up to 320kbps, CD-RW support …. And finally when it came out this summer – suddenly specs are different. Once I found out that it supports beat rates only up to 192 – I stopped reading and dreaming about it.

But I do have now the CD MP3 player that supports VBR, 32-320kbps beat rates, CDRW.
The name is - Phillips Expanium 103. I got it almost two weeks ago from Circuit City. And it’s not very expensive - $199 including AC adapter, car AC adapter and cassette adapter – cheaper than the on in this review.

I’m not thrilled with it like I was initially when I heard about it. There are some things to be done to it that could very much improve it, such as LCD screen that shows file names and ID tags, support for standards other than MP3 and a faster operation. But it’s already out and it plays MP3 CDs with any kind of bit rates !!!

Just think about it – even with 128kbps mp3 files ( which sound pretty good when you hook it up to your car stereo and drive at 85mph – you can have about 150 songs on one 650MB CD !!!! That’s more than eleven hours of music on one CD!!! I’m not talking about 700MB CDs and especially the new ones that can keep 99Min of audio ( god knows how many megabytes ).
If you are like me, and listening to anything less than 256kbps coded mp3s is torture for you – you can have about 70 of 256kbps MP3’s in one 650MB CD which makes it about five to six hours !

Why not to write a review about it and players like it??

I’m not saying how this Expanium is so great, because it wouldn’t be true in my opinion ( it has very nice skip protection though . But I don’t understand why pay this kind of money for some expensive memory card based mp3 players where you can fit about an hour of music, when you can get something like this Phillips CD player model.

BTW –I’ve read that RCA is coming out soon with CD MP3 player that has a big LCD to show filenames, so I’ll probably will return the Expanium and wait for that one. When you have more than sixty MP3 CDs - it’s kind of nice to know what’s playing at the moment.

My point is that’s it’s a waist of money to buy a memory card based MP3 player. The “perfect” player is not out yet and whoever will make it first will get a huge part of his market.

God luck with your shopping.


Aug 31, 00 at 5:52pm

i'll be interested in MP3 players once i'll be able to put on of those tiny 1GB IBM drives in there, i got about 800MB of MP3s and i still haven't ripped any CDs i have, so i need space and i don't want to pay for 20 flash cards.

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