Sansa Clip+ Feature Requests

sansaclipp s Sansa Clip+ Feature Requests

The Sansa Clip+ is one of the most popular players on this because it’s a very good player with a lot of things going for it. It didn’t end up like that without reason, and SanDisk have benefited greatly from being active in collecting user opinions and feature requests over the years. Added software elements like Ogg Vorbis and FLAC support, file/folder browsing and hard related things like a microSDHC slot are all features that have been requested by users of this forum and others. With SanDisk actually paying attention, that means that a lot more people are willing to bring things to their attention, and we have a thread in the forums for that exact reason. Here are some of the features requested in that thread, along with some others. SanDisk, we’re counting on you to use this information well, like you’ve done in the past.

Feature Requests

True gapless playback

Gapless playback currently only works for some but not all files. Gapless should be implemented for all files, including Ogg Vorbis and MP3 files. MP3 is by default not gapless, but it’s still possible to make it gapless.

More accurate volume control

This was an issue with the first Clip that is back with the Clip+. The volume needs to have more levels to be able to adjust the volume more accurately. Also, the lowest level is still too loud for a lot of uses (like the radio), which needs to be fixed.

Remove the slotRadio menu

One of my complaints about the Philips Spark, and a massive complaint with the not-yet-reviewed Archos 5 Android, is the amount of what can only be called “spam” on the player. As Martin put it, we paid for this device- we don’t want a menu item that does nothing but point to a URL for buying slotRadio cards. Include a pamphlet in the box, but don’t hardcode ads into the firmware.

Pan/balance

Some people don’t hear at equal levels on both ears. Some players allow you to compensate for this with a pan/balance setting. This should be a quick thing to implement and make the player more usable to a lot of people, so this one is a no-brainer. It should be standard for all players, really.

Audiobook/podcast track skip confirm and inter-chapter rewinding

On the Philips GoGear Spark, a menu will pop up asking you to confirm whenever you try to skip tracks forward or backwards for an audiobook. This adds a crucial safeguard against suddenly losing the position in a X hour file and having to spend 10 minutes trying to find it again. Make it an optional feature as some people might find it annoying, but it should definitely be an option to get the extra warning. This is my personal biggest gripe against the Clip+ and why I have switched to the Spark for audiobooks.

Another issue is to be able to rewind into the previous track, instead of being stopped at the beginning of the file. Single files don’t often mean much for audiobooks – they’re simply there to make skipping easier – so it doesn’t make any sense to limit rewinding to the current file.

Folder advance

When the Clip+ reaches the end of a folder (when used in file/folder mode), it either loops the folder or stops. There should be an option to let it continue to the next folder.

Last.fm scrobbling

Last.fm has become a giant service that let’s you both track your music habits and find similar music. Unfortunately, close to no player supports this, and those that do have half-hearted methods of doing so (like the iPod), use their own “special” last.fm-ripoff (Zune) or just happen to work with the now-abandoned Zenses. It shouldn’t be too hard to make the player keep track of what is played when, and make a small app that scrobbles this to last.fm. Rockbox already does this on the Clip v1, by writing the info to a text file you can manually upload- surely SanDisk can easily duplicate this even if they don’t make it automatic. Last.fm support can also be marketed as a major feature of the player, as many mainstream consumers would never have heard of last.fm. The potential is huge.

Alphabetical scrolling

The Clip+ has a small screen, but with microSDHC support it can hold a lot of music. Scrolling through lists can take a long time, especially if you have a lot of single tracks (and therefore a lot of different artists/albums) or scroll through all tracks. There are several ways to do this. The Philips GoGear Spark pops up a small window on the screen when scrolling which shows what letter of the alphabet you’re currently scrolling through. This is useful, but doesn’t really speed up the scrolling much. Another way would be to use Sony’s method of scrolling by alphabetical letters, either by setting the volume buttons to do this or toggle alphabet mode on/off with the middle button (since “right” can be used to select, you don’t need to use the middle button for that as well).

Setting sound spectrum display and other things as screensaver

The sound spectrum display is nice, but it’s not really used much. What would be nice would be to be able to set it as a screensaver, so that it could turn on automatically instead of having to trigger it. Other things should also be possible to use as a screensaver, such as a fullscreen clock, song info, upcoming tracks etc. This also means you have to have options for screensaver delay, and of course no screensaver at all.

Better equalizer

This has been an issue with the Clip since the beginning, and other SanDisk players as well. The equalizer is useless, which means that in a lot of cases the excellent sounding Clip+ won’t get recommended to people because the lack of sound enhancement. If you really want to take this point seriously, look into licensing BBE sound effects that Cowon uses. This isn’t proprietary Cowon technology and it’s peculiar how no mainstream brand has adopted what is without a doubt the best sound enhancement technology on the MP3 player market.

More options for long press

Currently, holding down the middle button let’s you add a song to a on-the-go playlist or rate it. This could be allowed to do a variety of things, from directly accessing EQ or song info, forcing the graphic equalizer, delete song, go to album, go to artist etc etc.

More accurate scan speeds

Fast forwarding and rewinding accelerates gradually, which can be a good thing, but also a big annoyance because you overshoot. Allowing the user to “gear” the speed would be preferable, for example by double-clicking and then holding the button to force slow scan speeds while single click and hold is still accelerated.

Customizable playback screen

There’s a lot than can be done with a playback screen. Allowing to select time remaining instead of elapsed time is one. Allowing to select what metadata is displayed (title, artist, album, track number, album artist etc) is another.

Marking listened podcasts/audiobooks

One of my all time favorite features with an iPod is its ability to mark files as listened to so that iTunes can remove them automatically on next sync. While I don’t expect (nor want) SanDisk to make software that auto-removes anything, it shouldn’t be too much work to add a option to enable renaming, deletion or moving of finished files. For example, once a podcast is listened to all the way through the player could rename it from podcast.mp3 to podcast-DONE.mp3. Another option would be auto-delete when finished, and a third option would be to move all finished files to a separate folder. I’m not saying pick one, I’m saying implement them all- people have different preferences. Either way, this would further help the Clip+ become the best non-ipod podcast and audiobook player out there.

Circumventing hold with a button combo

One of the things I like about the iPhone/iPod touch is that if you double-click the home button it brings up playback controls even though the hold is on. I constantly find myself needing to pause the Clip+ in my pocket but doing so requires fishing it up, turning off hold and pausing- takes too long when someone is talking to you. It would be nice to be able for pause the player by double-tapping the middle button. That button combo is hard to trigger accidentally (and it should be an optional feature anyways) and would make it a lot easier to quickly pause the player.

AAC support

iTunes is the biggest music store on the planet, and Apple has 70% of the MP3 player market. Yet the Clip+ don’t allow for using iTunes, nor does it let Apple users easily convert to the CLip+ because it doesn’t support the format needed- AAC. This is however not a free format so the reasons for not supporting it are probably cost related, bit it might be worth it all in all.




41 Comments

Anon on December 1, 2009 1:50 PM

a triple A battery slot.

guy on December 1, 2009 2:13 PM

There should also be a feature that will let you listen to the same thing on both sides of your headphones.Having the right speaker play something and the left speaker play something else sounds cool with actual speakers, but with headphones its maddening.

Andrew on December 1, 2009 3:33 PM

Hey, I had to smile when I saw this news. My Clip (V1) is by far the best player I ever had and I’m thinking about getting the new Clip+. If there were a better EQ and Last.fm support I’d buy it immediately, but for now I’m happy with my “old” clip on steroids (Rockbox :P ). Wait, this would imply that Rockbox is bad, which is not (AT ALL) the case … Wow, a Clip+ with Rockbox and replaceable battery would be my personal DAP-heaven. Still, the mentioned features here would make me a happier person! *thumbs up*

denox on December 1, 2009 4:22 PM

I am curious why people love clip so much.I own meizu m6SL and Sony X series right now and still trying to get better sounding MP3 player.I bought clip+ few days ago and very very disappointed with SQ, let alone EQ enhancement(useless)I called the store and ready to return it tomorrow unless someone can give me a good reason not to.I pair my MP3 players with PFE and just got Hippo VB (awesome), thanks to ABI.

Jon F on December 1, 2009 5:17 PM

AAC support.Without it, SanDisk can’t expect anyone leaving an iPod and iTunes will want to use a Clip+ as their conversion device. They’ve probably spent money for songs on iTunes that they either don’t know how to convert to MP3 or want at the same audio quality.That and completely abandoning the SlotMusic/SlotRadio format, which was really just invented by 60-year-old music label execs who miss buying physical albums and not having control over songs.

rahul on December 1, 2009 5:22 PM

Another request for AAC support.

MarvintheMartian on December 1, 2009 5:59 PM

If SanDisk fixes the crappy EQ, then I would happily rejoin the Sansa family. Every person’s ears, and every pair of headphones, are different…a proper EQ would let everyone find their ideal sound.

Big Bear on December 1, 2009 6:19 PM

Wow, awesome Art you made there, Andreas!And,Thank you Sandisk!Thought that was missing ;)

Mike on December 1, 2009 7:09 PM

SanDisk really could capture a greater significance of the iPod market if it had aac support. It would be very cost-effective, in the end. At the very least, possibly make aac support available via a few-$ downloadable firmware plug-in (although I don’t really like this business model).

Mike on December 1, 2009 7:11 PM

Also–How about allowing a center push to call up other information screens, as suggested above, such as a clock? And/or have an option to have a clock screen saver?

ultrauber on December 1, 2009 7:32 PM

@mike – apple probably trademarked the clock screensaver :) but a good idea+1 for better eq

Andreas Ødegård on December 2, 2009 1:41 AM

AAC added to the list. Also, battery screen savers arent trademarked or anything, several players use it- Sony players, Philips Spark etc. It’s definitely a nice idea, I’ve added it to the list

Jelle Goosens on December 2, 2009 3:10 AM

Better Equalizer and True Gapless are what I’d like most.

Andreas Ødegård on December 2, 2009 5:46 AM

If anyone wants the pic for this article, I’m going to be putting it up as a high res wallpaper download along with some other custom ABi>> wallpapers soon. Sneak peak of one of my own monitors: http://twitpic.com/rtis6

Defaultluser on December 2, 2009 12:46 PM

I WANT alphabetical scrolling, and I would posit a third option that might be the least clumsy to use:Map the center button to next alphabetical letter.Yeah, you can’t go backward, but in exchange you have no confusing mode changes where the buttons change their action, and you don’t have to reach to the side for the volume buttons.It sounds bad that you can’t go backward, but this will only increase your average button clicks by 5-6 (because some letters are unpopulated), and will save you the clumsiness of changing modes twice. As soon as you reach your letter, you can smoothly switch to the up/down buttons to scroll to your desired artist, instead of switching modes first.I don’t like the idea of mapping something to the volume buttons. I like the fact that the Clip+ lets you adjust the volume from anywhere in the player, because nothing else is mapped to the volume buttons. My e280 used to piss me off because I would have to make sure I was on the Now Playing screen before I could adjust the volume with the wheel. I don’t want another soft volume button!

TE on December 2, 2009 5:07 PM

AAA battery – like the the old m200 series.Small speaker like Creative Zen Stone+

chaosdivine on December 2, 2009 7:29 PM

Though I don’t own this model, I did have an e130 by Sandisk. It’s greatest feature was full size SD card support. It did not do SDHC or now SDXC. Sandisk, if you’re actually reading ATBI and this thread, in your Clip2 design, please return to full size cards. Adaptors will let the microSD’ers in on the fun. If you have to make the unit slightly bigger to accommodate this then I’m sure your followers would forgive you.One feature I loved about your e130 was the ability to loop A and B set points that a user sets manually. This was an awesome feature for us guitarists that learn songs by ear. I don’t know if that feature exists in the Clips but if it does, I am going to buy one PDQ!

Smeghead on December 2, 2009 10:14 PM

Pressing the home button cycles through main menu/track listings/current song info, similar to how pressing the middle button cycles through current song/spectrum/next song info.I hate having to press down and middle button to get back to choosing a track.

Clippy guy on December 2, 2009 11:02 PM

What about:”-Playback display would look a lot neater if it was “Song – Album” with a space between the dash and the tags instead of the current “Song-Album”.-Fixing the track tag problem from “xx” to “x/x”. When going to the track info menu, I hate seeing my track tags saying something like “18″ rather than the proper tag which is supposed to be “1/8″.-Folder browsing and track info menus should be moved up higher on the lists.-Adding more track info such as Year, Composer, Publisher, etc.”

MrWafflesMonster on December 3, 2009 6:27 AM

.aac support..are you joking?who in their right mind knowingly chooses to use that format?

SansaRulez83 on December 3, 2009 7:18 PM

Since when does the Sansa Clip have file folder browsing. It’s something I’ve enjoyed with my Cowons (not to say that tag browsing is bad.) I have the latest firmware from way back in Feb on my player 01.01.32A. All I see is Play All, Artist, Album and Song. No Folder option. Is folder browsing different on the Clip than on the Cowons or is this a premium feature relegated to the Clip+?

Andy S on December 3, 2009 11:59 PM

My Sansa Clips are primarily used for audiobooks and podcasts. On the PC, I generally play voice files at higher speeds (1.2-1.4x normal) in either WMP or Media Jukebox, since those programs automatically adjust pitch with the speed to avoid the chipmunk sound. The clip allows you to change speed, but does not adjust pitch.And another vote for aac, and along with aac the chapter support that comes with it that some podcasts use.

guy on December 4, 2009 2:20 AM

You know, in the scenario that SanDisk does read this and come out with a firmware upgrade, I think it should go without saying that these features are also wanted on the Fuze and Clip.

michael on December 4, 2009 8:43 AM

two things should be understood by the users before complaining and asking for the features mentioned above.first, it should be noted that if additional costs are way too much in considering the features above, then Sandisk is likely to abandon some of them.second, clip+ revolves around simplicity, so any feature which is too fancy (or ipod-like if you want)isn’t worth adding.essentially, you guys should bear in mind that sansa clip+ is not a complete substitute for ipod nano. it only intends to be a basic and simple mp3 player.

michael on December 4, 2009 11:22 AM

i just remembered a suggestion which could not be immediately made by sansa clip+. perhaps, this might be useful for their future releases of mp3 players.i would just like to suggest that instead of using buttons for volume control, why not develop a sort of small wheel which can be moved with no restrictions. by this, i mean a wheel which can be turned 360 deg. then, when in browsing mode, the said wheel can be used BOTH for normal and fast browsing. when pressed, the wheel would automatically switch to “alphabetical browsing” which can be very useful if the media files are becoming large in number. pressed again, the wheel would enable the user to browse through the media files one by one.this is the only way i think sandisk can address the slow browsing problem.but for now, a sort of firmware update can temporarily bring out great browsing experience in sansa clip+. i suggest that the volume buttons be also used for alphabetical browsing. for every press, the media files starting in the next alphabet are brought to view. for example, if you are currently viewing “A” songs, then by pressing the (-) button, which is the lower one, “B” songs are now viewed.hope this suggestion is brought into the attention both of the Sandisk management and operations department.

Lewis Childs on December 4, 2009 1:08 PM

I quite like a lot of the ideas already suggested, but I would add that making A playlist within the Clip+ could be a bit more advanced. ie changing track order, naming playlists etc.

Alon Aviv on December 4, 2009 2:04 PM

Add real line out and maybe make it out of aluminium.

Big Bear on December 5, 2009 11:28 AM

You know, now that the actual clip is built in the player, one could put hardware in that clip, like the microSD slot… or perhaps the full-size SDs, but then R.I.P. good battery life!An aluminium body would be nice, but it would boost the price of the device, not a good thing for that low price point.And you can forget the AAA slot.It would boost the players life, not a good thing when you try to sell new ones each year or so. If you take care of your player, the battery is going to be the first thing that render the player useless.I still think that Sandisk deserves a thank you in that article :)

anon on December 9, 2009 10:34 PM

I want to be able to create shortcuts to commonly used menu items. e.g. if I want to set the sleep timer, it’d be nice if I don’t have to navigate 3 levels of menus.

Sens on December 11, 2009 5:57 PM

Needed support noy only for le-AAC but for AAC+ (best codec in many tests).ABI should review music features of phones, they (some, like Nokia) support said format, have replaceable battery, camera…

wehat on January 15, 2010 11:38 PM

How about a fix for the 44.1khz pitch issue?

jade on January 19, 2010 4:11 PM

i have the original clip 4GB and won the new clip+ 2GB. even though i use itunes to manage and rip my cds, i always make sure to have it in the mp3 format. i would like to see the ability to sync in itunes not necessarily support aac but the sync ability. i use a mac and there is no way to update the firmware directly; it only sees the player as a mounted mass storage device. not every mac user wants the be bounded to apple.

psxgamer on February 22, 2010 7:54 AM

I just buyed a Sansa Clip+ with 8 gigs of memory. Today I received a 8 gig memory card to my Clip+.I was just wondering, isn’t there any way to make Windows 7 and Windows Media Player or Winamp to see the internal memory and the memory card as a one memory slot? I mean, it’s pretty damn stupid that I can’t just synchronize all my music to my player with it’s ~16 gigabytes of memory. Instead I have to first fulfill the internal memory and then start synchronizing the memory card memory.Is there no workaround this little annoyance?

Orion 3 on March 5, 2010 11:19 PM

I agree with psxgamer about the loading beinig a hassle. I have Clip+ 8GB player as well but a 16GB chip. Once I got it loaded going through that hassle I find out that playlists I created in WMP and/or Media Monkey will only read off of where they are loaded. You can’t have a playlist with songs on the internal and songs on the external chip. You can do this with the Go playlist so why not from playlists created on the computer. Also would like to be able to save and rename the Go playlist like I had on my old Zen.ACC? Really? Won’t WinAmp convert ACC to MP3?Agree the EQ needs revamp not only increasing number of bands but also in how it works. It does boost a frequency but rather lowers all the other frequencies.All that said the playlist issue I mentioned really needs to be addressed.

Marijn on March 28, 2010 11:29 AM

I prefer searching by artist then by album name, but I also want to listen to complete albums. The way it’s now the clip+ splits albums if there’s for example a song sung by another artist. It would be nice if there was an option to enable sort by album artist instead of “song artist”.

Mike on April 17, 2010 1:27 PM

Another request: ff and rew WITH SOUND (at least, have it as an option)–otherwise, it is a true hit or miss when backing up to study a phrase of music, or to relisten to the last line or 2 of an audiobook; also, good for learning languages.

Sven Hedin on April 18, 2010 12:17 AM

Thanks for telling me about the rewinding issue (not starting at the end of the previous track), i almost paid $60 for a huge headache. I bought the clip for that exact feature, and i would have bought a clip+ if it wasn’t for that, i’ve been wanting folder browsing for a long time, but without proper rewind it’s just not worth it.

Alex on May 18, 2010 10:33 PM

1) Please support CUE format of playlists in addition to M3U. This also means please read correctly long and super-long WAV and FLAC files.2) Please check for bugs with OGG container support (or Vorbis decoder, whatever is the culprit), I’ve had issues with some OGG Vorbis files not playing the sound correctly.3) I wonder if it is possible to add the support for APE files (Monkey’s audio), including long files with CUE playlists.4) Sleep function is an awesome battery saver, but needs an easier access (maybe with a single “click” of the power button?)On a side note, screw AAC format, and I don’t care how many iPod users are switching to Sansa (probably not too many anyway). iTunes = adware, IMO.

Kevin on May 18, 2010 11:58 PM

a simple clock would be nice

Iain on October 27, 2010 3:07 AM

Rockbox is now available for the Clip+ and it has most of these features. It’s not too difficult to install.

Andy on December 29, 2010 6:59 AM

Agree with Kevin – a simple clock with alarm.

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