Rockbox Technical Forums

Rockbox Development => New Ports => Topic started by: pamaury on April 04, 2012, 10:18:23 AM

Title: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on April 04, 2012, 10:18:23 AM
I'm starting a thread for the Creative Zen X-Fi3 port. There is already plenty of information on the wiki ( ( I've began some work on it and the bootloader is working right now. Since it is similar to the Fuze+ and Zen x-Fi2 is mainy ways, I expect a quick port on most aspects (except bluetooth).
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: kioscera on January 18, 2013, 03:09:35 PM
Hello Amaury!!

I´ve followed the steps of your x-fi3 tutorial and the player is running rockbox perfectly.

It has some crashes but rockbox is more useful than the original firmware...

Where do you advise me that I report the bugs?

Another question: Why do you say that the DRI driver is´nt implemented? I saw that you´ve made a  program for the  stfm1000 driver and I saw in internet more programs...

Last question: How can I modify the CPU clock? the player is too fast but it consume too much battery

Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on January 18, 2013, 03:14:37 PM
Yes please post bugs if you encounter them. Try to describe the steps to reproduce, otherwise it's useless. I have committed some code today which enables frequency scaling, making the battery life much better. Please use the HEAD of the development tree. STFM1000 is unsupported, we have some code but it is very preliminary and we couldn't make DRI to work currently.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on January 29, 2013, 06:46:03 AM
I have uploaded a complete prebuilt bootloader image, you can find the link on the wiki page ( You don't need any development tool to install it.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: kioscera on February 07, 2013, 11:31:05 AM
Hi! I´ve found a bug:

When I´m listening a playlist with 10 song or over and I pass some songs of the playlist too fast, the DAP crash. Only happen when I use a WPS with peak meter or Album art support
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on February 08, 2013, 09:51:05 AM
Please post a bug report, this thread is for development only. I leave this message but ne next ones like this will be deleted.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: Hoborg on March 05, 2013, 03:22:56 PM
most of the parts work fine. thank you

the original firmware totally sucks even compared to the previous Creative Zens!

continue the good work, thanks  :)
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: SoundProof on June 20, 2013, 03:47:24 PM
Hey everyone, I'm new to Rockbox and I've searched in the wiki how to install it on the X-Fi3.
But I've been unable to make it work. Can somebody help me or give me a link with instructions ?
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on June 20, 2013, 04:30:39 PM
this wiki page contains all the information you need: (
First you'll need to install rockbox it, you can download the latest daily build of the Zen X-Fi3 here: =, unzip it at the root of the device.
Then install the bootloader by downloading file (see wiki link, section Prebuilt), put it at the root of the device and reboot. This will install the bootloader. Note that you can still boot to the original firmware by holding volume down on boot.

This should soon be integrated into the Rockbox Utility tool and this manual procedure won't be useful any more.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: SoundProof on June 20, 2013, 04:48:37 PM
Thanks for your answer.
I know what I was doing wrong, the "" had the wrong filename : "=firmware.s=b" I don't know why it's displayed like that on the wiki page.

Rockbox is working now. But when I play a song, the sound is awful, it's just crackling, not even saturating, just a bad sound. Or sometimes no sound at all.

EDIT : It's crackling when the volume is at max. When it's at another level, I hear no sound.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on June 22, 2013, 07:36:27 AM
Thanks for trying. I will a look at this issue, this is strange because I don't have this problem on mine, maybe a problem with the bootloader.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: SoundProof on June 22, 2013, 08:04:49 AM
Is there a way to reinstall it to see if it works better ?

EDIT : Ok I got it to work, I removed everything and put only the rockbox folder and firmware file back. I guess there were files that were interacting at the root of the player.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3: unstable behaviour, report bug?
Post by: Mac n00b on July 08, 2013, 07:30:03 PM
Hello pamaury! First i want to thank you for the great work on the i.mx233 platform, finally unleashing the true power of these devices (especially the volume cap on the creative's..) I am fully aware that you're using your spare time, and i hope it'll serve your future career someday! I want to report a bug in rockbox for the X-Fi3, that makes it unstable. It might apply to other targets using this SoC too:

While playing audio (any kind of format or bitrate), the player might freeze on wake-up after the display/buttons are shut down.  The touch buttons will lit, but the display is still shut off, and the music plays for a second or two, then i believe the buffer goes empty and audio stops. Buttons are stil lit. This happens a lot and it might have something to do with my .cfg:

Code: [Select]
# .cfg file created by rockbox be5fadf-130623 -

volume: -18
shuffle: on
statusbar: bottom
scrollbar: right
scrollbar width: 10
brightness: 80
scroll speed: 17
bidir limit: 0
scroll step: 1
foreground color: FFFFFF
line selector start color: 292829
line selector end color: FFFFFF
font: /.rockbox/fonts/24 Ubuntu [Regular].fnt
wps: /.rockbox/wps/rockbox_failsafe.wps
sbs: /.rockbox/wps/
lang: /.rockbox/langs/norsk.lng
backdrop: -
iconset: -
viewers iconset: /.rockbox/icons/viewers.6x8x16.bmp
keyclick: weak
root menu order: bookmarks, files, database, wps, settings, recording, radio, playlists, plugins, system_menu, shortcuts,

Maybe the "scroll step" and/or "scroll speed" are to intensive on the refresh rate of the display in wps. A wild guess:)
Other users might want to reproduce it as well, but this is on an old prebuilt bootloader from your I'm with fedora and unfamiliar with compiling my own bootloader: I'd like to try a new one since it happens to have changed a lot recently. hopefully some great work there:)

Best regards
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on July 09, 2013, 10:54:25 AM
Are you using the latest build or the lastest release ? Could you try again after resetting all parameters to their default value ?
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: Mac n00b on July 09, 2013, 02:56:03 PM
Hi! I've done some testing with standard parameters from a clean install as of r18f9486-130709 with the same prebuilt bootloader from your The bug is still reproducable even under the standard conditions (mainly different from my cfg in that I was using an antialiasing font, ubuntu, with high scroll speed, 1px scroll step), so there are nothing with my cfg that trigger this bug. It still happens my XFi-3 a lot:
1. I set it to play music from the database by track (about 900 songs).
2. I let it play music for some while (a minute or two), or until the display/button light goes off.
3. I try to skip to next song, eventually going forward to next song and awaking the display (normal)
3b. or the display does not respond but the buttons are lit, audio plays for a second or two, then freezes, buttons still lit (bug).
        - Disconnecting the jack makes crackling sound, suggesting there are still DC out..

Step 3 might take several tries.

Standard parameters, tried different formats, tried to reinstall the prebuilt bootloader, formatted player then reloading rockbox+music from win7, bug still happens occasionally.

Really hopes this helps, anybody might try to reproduce it, but I'd love to test if the new bootloader sorted it out:) Apologizing for not using flyspray, some might want to report it there.

Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on July 13, 2013, 05:38:56 AM
I'm sorry but I really cannot reproduce the problem. Does it happen when playing a folder and not from the database ? I've tried to play an album, wait for the screen to turn off and press a key but it never crashes. Anyway, can you recheck with a fresh install: remove .rockbox directory (or rename it) and install the latest nightly build. If it still occurs, could you try with this build: ( ? Thanks
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: Mac n00b on July 17, 2013, 04:07:44 PM
Hi! I haven't tried your custom build yet, but experienced an increase in stability after disabling bluetooth in OF. Discovered this after some peculiar behavior: I Used my player with OF, streaming audio to my car via bluetooth. Then I shut off the player, restarted into Rockbox and the player still streamed via bluetooth the music I played in Rockbox! Seems the Bluecore module is quite autonome, having it's own way.. can this be a possible cause?
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: moodydork on August 03, 2013, 12:47:28 PM
i was looking around the net for ideas on which new mp3 player to get when i came across people talking a lot about rockbox.
so i came here and to my surprise there was one in development for x-fi3. i've always been a creative fan since soundblaster pro era, and eversince the first gen x-fi, i just couldn't see myself using any other mp3 player branding. but there was just so much horrible reviews and hatred going on for the x-fi2 and 3.

after reading this thread, i must ask the most important question to me. does the x-fi sound enhancement still work with your rockbox firmware? secondly, the issue where everyone complains about how bad the touch screen responsivity is, will this be addressed by rockbox? because if these 2 answers are yes, i'm gonna go find myself a new set of the 32gb version (which doesn't seem to be officially available anymore on my local creative webstore, the 16gb might be too small since i plan to start trying out FLAC files)
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on August 03, 2013, 12:55:43 PM
the port is still work in progress so I cannot give a final answer. First you must know that the  "X-Fi sound enhancement" has nothing to do with the hardware, that's a pure software marketing thing and we don't have such a thing a rockbox. Actually I don't know even know what it does; Rockbox features a lot of sound processing options so maybe you can reach the same capabilities, you would need to come on our IRC channel and ask the right person to get a final answer.
Second, the touchpad is currently not better than the OF because we are using the exact same setting. I admit it is not that good although one gets used to it. The good point is that it can be tweaked a lot but this is far from obvious so I cannot guarantee that we will ever success it getting it better but at least there is some hope.
You must also know that at this point the radio is not handled (although I managed to make it work but this is not in the published code) and we don't support bluetooth. Also the speaker is not handled but this will eventually be implemented, when I have some time for it.

I hope that doesn't sound too negative :) I think the zen-xfi3 is a good player, it's just that the port is not finished yet and needs a lot of a polishing.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: moodydork on August 03, 2013, 01:20:36 PM
wow, thanks so much for responding so quickly!

i remember reading somewhere a long long time ago that the first generation x-fi products (soundcards and/or mp3 players) actually came with a hardware processor for this x-fi thingy. i don't remember where i read it anymore, but i found something about it here,
does the information (and that pictures by the side) help make any sense to you? (i could be wrong though, not sure if related)

does that mean that even with rockbox, can booting it up, take as long as 3mins (as i've read people reviewing the x-fi3 mention about super slow load times)

things like radio and the bluetooth doesn't bother me at all actually. i'm fine with it being a mp3/flac player by itself.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on August 03, 2013, 01:41:17 PM
Maybe older version of the creative zen line used some hardware "crystaliser" but I can assure you that this is not the case of the recent ones (starting from Creative Zen). Given the scope of X-Fi enhancement, I think it's mostly useless if your music is sampled with high enough quality but again I'm not audio expert.
On the X-Fi3, rockbox is very fast to boot, although I don't remember experiencing such a long boot on the OF.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: xusnorris on January 08, 2014, 07:00:31 PM
Thank you for this port, it's amazing and way better than OF. It allows X-Fi3 to play podcasts with bookmarks, and it's wonderfull!!!

Only one bug found (for the moment), if you go to general settings - bookmarking - Maintain a list of Recent Bookmarks , when you are going to select an option, the player hungs, and the only way to bring it to life is the reset button.

Again, thanks!!!!

Edit: With more use I realize that the problem is with setting options not implemented (I think), and it happens too with file selection with some directories (maybe with a lot of files?) . Still better than OF to podcasting.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on January 12, 2014, 06:15:19 AM
I see, it is possible that it is a keymap problem and you cannot escape the setting option once you're enter it. I will try on mine.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: xusnorris on March 12, 2014, 04:42:21 PM
FYI, in latest versions off button is not working, only reset works to switch off. But the keymap is fine now :-)
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on March 18, 2014, 10:02:18 AM
I just checked and the off button is working on my device, which is puzzling. I will check on my other ZEN X-Fi3.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: mup9 on March 20, 2014, 11:47:45 AM
Re:bluetooth on creative zen xfi3
H all,
I have a nudeaudio bluetooth speaker which I managed to pair with my player and Rockbox.
I started the original firmware and paired it and then keeping this connection  restarted player into rockbox and bluetooth function works!I love rockbox on this player thanks to all the programmers especially Amaury.
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: csussman on April 20, 2014, 02:53:45 PM
i just got a zen x-fi3 and installed rockbox which generally seems to be working fine, but i am having a couple of problems:
1. I can't figure out how to save a file name

2. rockboy requires 9 buttons, and the x-fi3 only has 8.
  maybe a third button can be added on bottom between the 2 official buttons

3. in rockboy when you try rotating the screen one way (i think left) it crashes when you go to the menu

4. i can't find the jump/fire button in the zxbox emulator
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: csussman on April 23, 2014, 01:57:48 PM
can s/o explain how to remove rockbox. (i need to exchange an 8gb player for 16gb)
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on April 23, 2014, 02:12:43 PM
To remove rockbox, download (, boot to the OF (Original Firmware) in USB mode (by holding volume down on boot), put the file at the root of the device and rename it to Then unplug and reboot to the OF, it should trigger a firmware update and remove the Rockbox bootloader. If that doesn't work, remove the file and retry. Be sure to boot to the OF.

Note: the file on dropbox is the one which can be extracted from any firmware upgrade from Creative using cabextract (see wiki page)
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: Hoborg on October 27, 2014, 11:28:02 AM

I've been updating my Creative Zen X-Fi 3 with new RockBox versions recently and with each release, RockBox firmware was working better and the device had less and less problems. Thank you people.

Last night I left it in the car, while it was ON (or maybe off) and it was connected to a 3.5mm audio cable which was then connected to the AUX port on the car's player. It wasn't connected to any sort of battery charger in the car and the car's player just turns itself off automatically with the car. So the X-Fi 3 was just on its own, probably playing files as long as it had any battery power left.

After about 16 hours I went back to the car to get my X-Fi 3 out of it and to recharge it if the battery was empty.

I tried to turn it on and nothing happened. I left it connected to the charger for a few hours but didn't seem to get charged because neither I could turn the device on (the reset button doesn't work either) nor the adapter was getting warm (meaning that it wasn't probably doing anything all those hours)!

I then connected the X-Fi 3 to my PC using a USB cable and again Nothing happened. Nothing changes in Windows' Device Manager when I connect this device to the computer!

Also the recovery mode doesn't load (which according to the Creative support is power-on into OF and then holding the - button). The device won't even turn on for me to go to the recovery mode!

What do you think happened? Is this more like a hardware problem or a software one?

Knowing that it was only playing files on its own battery while being only connected to a 3.5mm audio cable, how could anything possibly go wrong?

I had the option "shutdown after x hours" turned on in the past but disabled it a few weeks ago because it was annoying! So I actually never had my X-Fi 3's battery totally emptied (except a few times while I was on the OF).

Should I send the device to Creative support to fix it or is there any way to like 'hard reset' it?! Do you think the battery is Dead or something because maybe RockBox didn't shut the device down when the battery was too low? (or maybe it crashed somehow and the device remained on with an error on the screen until the battery was out, who knows!)
Title: Re: Creative Zen X-Fi3
Post by: pamaury on October 27, 2014, 11:32:40 AM
there can be several explanation, I don't think the device is dead. Best is probably that you come on our IRC channel ( to get some help. Most probably battery is extremely low.