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February 8, 2005 12:33 AM

Broken: CD player buttons

Cdplayer1Cdplayer2George Lane writes:

My Audiophase CD player (model CD156) has a squarish "play" button and a pointed "stop" button.  This appears to have been done for asthetic reasons, but I can't count the number of times I've pressed "stop" thinking it was "play," because on tape players and other media playing devices I associate the ">" shape with going rather than with stopping.


hrmmm... yes i believe this to be broken, on the first part for the shapes... on the second part because... isnt usually the stop button to the left of the play button? for any sort of aesthetic purpose this should be true.

Posted by: Dragon at February 8, 2005 02:29 AM

And I think one would assume Play to be the *larger* button, anyway...

Posted by: Andreas at February 8, 2005 03:36 AM

That's the dumbest design I've ever seen. On every CD player I've ever used or seen except this, all across the USA, the stop is to the left of play, and play would be the one shaped like a triangle.

Posted by: sir_flexalot at February 8, 2005 07:53 AM

No no.

Stop *is* to the left of play.

It's the labels that are upside down.

Posted by: DaveC426913 at February 8, 2005 10:01 AM

I just love interfaces designed by artists.

Posted by: Jacques Troux at February 8, 2005 10:24 AM

I don't think it's so much an issue of which button goes on which side, but rather the method of labeling that bothers me. If I have to be in really good lighting conditions and hold the CD player that close to read the small type, then something is definitely broken.

What happened to the good ol' days of putting some identifying mark on the buttons? A black square went on the Stop button, and a triangle pointing to the right (sometimes colored green) was for Play. Blank buttons are the worst, forcing me to rely on markings on the case that might wear away or become distorted with wear and tear.

Posted by: Manni at February 8, 2005 11:43 AM

Why do people think Stop is to the left of Play?

- WinAmp: Stop on the right.

- RealPlayer: Stop on the right.

- DivX Player: Stop on the right.

- VLC: Stop on the right.

- WMP: Stop on the right.

- English: Left to right, play before stop.

- QuickTime: Play changes to Pause (no obvious stop)

I don't have any hardware with a 'play' button, but it looks putting play on the left was the only thing this player got right.

Posted by: James at February 8, 2005 06:11 PM

I agree, the designers don't think about usability, just looks

Posted by: hello at February 8, 2005 07:54 PM

definately a bad idea

Posted by: dude at February 8, 2005 07:55 PM

a real bad idea

Posted by: rocky at February 8, 2005 07:56 PM

what a bad idea

Posted by: shoemaker at February 8, 2005 07:56 PM

bad idea

Posted by: stalkajdsf at February 8, 2005 07:57 PM

the idea is awful

Posted by: reach at February 8, 2005 07:57 PM

I just checked the devices (not software) in the house: one (off-brand) discman, one bookshelf CD player, one "boom box" CD player, one DVD player, and one VCR. In all cases, "play" is to the right of "stop." Why all that software listed above does it the other way around, I couldn't say. My software, xmcd, neatly avoids the issue by putting "play" directly above "stop."

Posted by: mph at February 8, 2005 08:55 PM

"I agree, the designers don't think about usability, just looks"

Good designers harmoniously blend aestheics and function. Bad designers (and I would hesitate to bestow such a title upon them) don't.

Posted by: gravesfan at February 8, 2005 08:56 PM

Everyone should just farm out their product design to Apple.

Posted by: Citizen Of Trantor at February 9, 2005 10:35 AM

Obviously the designers need to have people at Ford create the proper symbols for them.(see "Safety belt strap warning" post)

Posted by: schube at February 9, 2005 11:19 AM

Well, I must say my iPod doesn't have that problem.

Posted by: Ilan at February 9, 2005 04:21 PM

Just broken. Sure out broken.

Posted by: JC at February 9, 2005 05:12 PM

Which side is your hot water knob? If you are use to it being on the left and someone repairs your sink and puts it on the right, you can get burnt, if you have a fast running system.

I know, that now, all of you are looking at your ceilings, and trying to think, which side your hot water is on.

Posted by: Chris at February 10, 2005 10:24 AM

I actually think this and the computer players have it right. You have to play before you can start, which would make sense to have play on the left.

Posted by: T at February 11, 2005 04:42 PM

Music playback follows a loop in two directions, and "Stop" is the music's neutral state.

back - stopped - forward

Maybe the software designers think of music as "off" or "on", which makes a "stop" command somewhat arbitrary from a linear perspective.

Posted by: dull at February 11, 2005 05:37 PM

Of course this only makes any sense in culures where left-to-right reading is the norm. The play symbol should be "

And their records should go round the other way.

Posted by: Simon Trew at February 12, 2005 02:47 PM

i agree with citizen of trantor. apple has the best designers out there.

Posted by: Bob at March 25, 2005 08:56 AM

My numbers on my cd player dont show up. I have tried cleaning it and everything but you can only see half the number. please tell me how to fix it!

Posted by: Tina at May 19, 2005 06:28 PM

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