Sandisk Sansa Fuze+ Review

fuzeplusmain Sandisk Sansa Fuze+ Review

When it was time for SanDisk to update the Fuze, they dubbed it the Fuze+ rather than make it a completely new player- just as they did with the Sansa Clip+. While the Clip+ truly was a minor (but awesome) update though, you can stare at the Fuze and Fuze+ for hours without seeing the connection. Some of the “updates” are for the better, but others are not.

  • Sandisk Sansa Fuze+ Specs
  • Screen: 2.4″ 320×240 pixels
  • Supported formats: MP3, WMA, Secure WMA, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, AAC, Audible
  • Connectivity: microUSB, MTP/MSC user selectable
  • Storage: 4, 8 or 16GB + microSDHC slot
  • Battery life: 24 hours audio, 5 hours video
  • Features: radio, video, podcast, audiobooks, photos
  • Review based on firmware 2.37.1

Design

The original Fuze is a pretty rectangular device, with a scroll wheel that seems to point towards iPods as the origins for the design. The Fuze+ however have left most of its tactile controls behind and gone for a more rounded off, pebble shaped device. It has a lot more in common with some of the older Samsung players than with the original Fuze, and it’s definitely a lot more ergonomic. The back is rounded off in all directions so that holding it is like holding a bar of soap, and it generally looks a bit more 2011.

The front of the player holds the main playback controls, which are now in the form of a capacitive touchpad instead of the old scroll wheel and buttons. It works a lot like a capacitive touch screen that you’d find on most touch screen cell phones and tablets these days, but you’re touching static symbols rather than a screen. I’m not a big fan of touchpads and right off the bat this is one of the biggest disadvantages of the Fuze+, but I’ll get back to that later.

The three tactile buttons left on the player are located on the top and left side of the player. The top has the on/off switch (which doubles as a control lock button) and the left side holds the volume rocker. The left side also has the microSDHC slot that survived the transition from the original Fuze.

The bottom holds the 3.5mm headphone port, located square in the center of the player. Some people dislike having the headphone port on the bottom, while others feel that it makes it easier to pull the player out of a pocket and get it the right side up.

One very noticeable new feature is the lack of a proprietary dock connector like the Fuze, E200 and View has. Instead the Fuze+ features a microUSB connector, which is going to be the standard some day but still feels “unusual” when you’re used to miniUSB. The connector is also located on the right side rather than the bottom, which means that we’re unlikely to see any sort of dock for the player (which would have been pretty useless anyways since the lack of a 30 pin connector means no line-out, no video-out, and no remote control functionality).

The screen is 240×320 pixels, a nice upgrade from the original Fuze. The viewing angles are good with the exception of when it’s viewed from the top, which becomes the left side in landscape mode. Because of this, it’s easy to accidentally view it from an angle that makes the screen looks a lot worse than it is, and if you want to watch video on this you should actually be tilting the right side towards you a little bit to get the best result. This is pretty typical of cheaper devices, and something that it’s easy to forget is an issue if you’re used to higher end devices.

Interface

The interface has also been revamped on the Fuze+. It frankly looks a bit Zune-ish, for better and for worse. The wallpaper is automatically created using album art from music on the player, with colored filters overlaid for each menu item. You scroll left and right by swiping the touch panel, which is a somewhat slow process where you can easily hit play. You have 8 options; music, video, photo, radio, books (podcasts/audiobooks), voice, memory card and settings. The options that have content available show thumbnails, in form of album art for audio and still frames for video.

In the music menu, sorting options like artist/album has been turned into tabs rather than a list of submenus. You scroll left and right to switch between album/artist/songs/genres/playlists and up/down to scroll the list. The album tab also shows the album art beside each listing, while the other options just list the content in text. There are also deeper submenus for both artists, albums and genres where selecting an artist will show you albums and selecting an album will show an album art carousel letting you scroll left and right through albums. In other words, you can be fairly specific in what you choose with the Fuze+, which is a good thing considering this player can hold up to 48GB of music.

The other media menus have a lot less complicated sorting options. For video you can sort by name or duration, and that’s it. Photos can be sorted alphabetically or by date, books by podcasts/audiobooks/Audible. As for the card menu, that is basically just a copy of the main menu (with only music/video/books/photos) restricted to on-card content. Any content on the card integrates with the main content menus, so the card menu is really more for the SlotRadio cards, Sandisk’s series of microSD card pre-loaded with music. Be warned though that indexing a card to make this possible is a very slow process, with a couple of dozen songs I tried taking several minutes. I dare not speculate how long it would take to fully index a 32GB card, but there’s likely to be a new version of the Fuze out by the time it finishes. What’s even worse is that it needs to “load” the card every time it’s been removed, even though it has already indexed it. This is common issue with players that support external storage, and there’s no way around it.

The music playback screen has also been updated, putting a lot more emphasis on album art. The album art collage is still visible in the background, with the currently playing song’s album art displayed in circa 200×200 resolution on top. Below that you have progression bar, song title, artist and album info. Touching the middle of the touchpad while on this screen brings up options to rate the song, shuffle and repeat options, “add to playlist” option and an option to delete the track. Sandisk has made the same mistake so many others have with placing equalizer, replay gain and sleep settings in the main settings menu accessible only from the main menu, making it a pain to access those features.

Controls

The actual navigation using the touch panel is frankly absolutely horrible. It reminds me a bit of trying to use swiping gestures on a resistive touch screen, and compared to the excellent (and fast) scroll wheel on the original Fuze, Sandisk has taken the Fuze+ at least 10 years backwards in time when it comes to user friendly controls. Sometimes the panel doesn’t react, something you hit the wrong button, and sometimes the reaction from the player is so slow that it seems like it didn’t notice the touch input. As someone who’s now comfortably used to capacitive glass touch screens that react just the way they should, I barely even made it through this review without smashing the Fuze+ into tiny unrecognizable pieces , all because of the nightmarish controls. Forget about using the player with an armband, in your pocket, or any other way where you’re not concentrating fully. This new touch feature might sound modern on paper, but in reality it’s not even suited for flushing a toilet.

Features

Video

I still remember back in 2007 when the D2 came out, and 320×240 video was an awesome feature. I spent hours watching videos on that thing. creating a library of converted files. These days, you can get a 7″ HD capable media player for what the D2 cost back then. Many people have smartphones that can play awesome looking video without conversion, or stream directly off the net. Naturally, it’s hard to be impressed by 320×240 in this day and age, even if it’s a decent upgrade from the original Fuze. As with any such “not really a video player”, you need to convert the video before watching, using the Sansa Media Converter or other software that you tuen to the required video specs. The resulting video quality is decent as far as 320×240 video goes, but I think it’s safe to say that no one is going to buy the Fuze+ to watch video. If anyone is, they’re likely to be kids or others with low budgets- and for such uses, it will do a decent job.

Photos

The photo viewer on the Fuze+ is also somewhat limited, requiring conversion for most formats and of course being limited to the 320×240 resolution. The viewing angle issue becomes a problem here as well, since you’re likely to view photos in landscape and have the bad viewing angle be the left side. Still, it does the job for showing the occasional photo to your friends.

Radio

The radio on the Fuze+ is a nice surprise. Naturally it has the same preset functionality and auto-scanning as any other radio enabled player out there, but it also adds radio recording which is a far less common feature. Again they’ve placed some of the settings in the main settings menu rather than in the radio menu, but only region settings and stereo mode- no recording settings, and no timer to automatically record radio. Still, better than most radio enabled players.

Books

Calling this section “books” is somewhat misleading as there isn’t an ereader in there, but rather audio books and podcasts. Sandisk has always been on the very front line of podcast and audio book support, acknowledging that they should have their own features separate from music for years. Audible support is also included, with such audio books also having their own section. Files that classify as one of these three will have a couple of extra features, namely the ability to resume playback and the ability to adjust playback speed.

Sound Quality

What can I say? This thing sounds just like any other quality player in this price range. It doesn’t have line out, and it doesn’t have any useful sound enhancements other than the standard equalizer, so you end up with that “nothing to write home about” sound quality that is so common in players like this. Pair the Fuze+ up with a good pair of IEMs or headphones and you won’t complain, even if you won’t see anyone at you-know-where plug 14 tube amps, 3 DACs and a Pikachu made of ebony into it and swear that the Rapture is happening every time the thing is turned on.

Conclusion

The Fuze+ is not an easy player to judge objectively. On one hand, the design is good, possible storage capacity is excellent, menus are very nice looking and there are plenty of features for such a player. On the other hand. the controls are so beyond bad that it makes me want to cry. If you could rip out the touchpad on the Fuze+ and insert the scroll wheel from the original Fuze (and make the menus a bit faster) you’d have an excellent player. As it is, you have a very average player. I’d actually recommend a Sansa Clip+ over the Fuze+ unless video is an absolute necessity, as it’s certainly a less annoying experience as far as controls go. You can get the Fuze+ for less than $50 though (4GB), so I can’t be too hard on it. For a consumer level MP3 player that doesn’t care that the world is now full of Angry Birds enabled Android based media players and tablets, it isn’t a bad deal. After all, you have to at least triple the cost of the cheapest Fuze+ to get something that really stands out.

 




59 Comments

tds101 on May 29, 2011 4:44 PM

Honest review, and totally on point. I’d have bought a fuze+ myself if it didn’t have that crap touchpad. It was a horror on the Samsung Q2, it’s no better on the fuze+, it’s a “fail”!

Roger on May 29, 2011 4:51 PM

Do they have folder browsing? This and other reviews of the Fuze+ have convinced this Fuze user never to get one.

What I really want is the Clip+ but with the battery life of the Fuze.

Marko on May 29, 2011 5:02 PM

Hey dud, what happenedwith your finger.
Playing with gasoline :)

Andreas Ødegård on May 29, 2011 5:12 PM

Dremel, not gasoline ;)

fga100 on May 29, 2011 5:25 PM

Which has the best sound? Fuze+ or Clip+?

MarvintheMartian on May 29, 2011 5:48 PM

I don’t know what they were thinking when they created this thing. I wouldn’t buy one even if Rockbox was already a stable port. Totally agree the Clip+ is a better player.

DennisS on May 29, 2011 5:50 PM

Great review, I’ll stick w/ my Clip+. wished I still had my Fuze, even though it was 2GB.

tds101 on May 29, 2011 6:01 PM

Yup, either a V1 fuze or a clip+,…

Lagool56 on May 29, 2011 7:12 PM

And this is why I love my V2 Fuze to death.I don’t regret choosing it over the new Fuze+ at all.

Satellite on May 29, 2011 7:47 PM

“you won’t see anyone at you-know-where plug 14 tube amps, 3 DACs and a Pikachu made of ebony into it and swear that the Rapture is happening every time the thing is turned on.”

I. . . I can’t stop laughing. xD

eightbitsprite on May 29, 2011 8:34 PM

I think I remember reading on the forum that the firmware updates improved navigation immensely… oh, well.
To be honest, I’m still interested in trying it out- but when I do, I’ll just get a refurbished one off of Ebay- no sense in splurging if it turns out to be an utter turd.
“…it’s safe to say that no one is going to buy the Fuze+ to watch video. If anyone is, they’re likely to be kids or others with low budgets..” And that fits my description perfectly. :D

Justin on May 29, 2011 9:28 PM

I’d even take a clip+ over the Fuze+ for video… ;)

eightbitsprite on May 29, 2011 10:26 PM

@Justin
I sincerely hope that was a joke. XD

musichound on May 30, 2011 12:52 AM

Did you update with the latest firmware? I am asking because I’ve read with the latest firmware installed the navigational controls are snappier. I do recall awhile back that I’ve tried the Fuse+ in BB, and I too found the control absolute;y horrid.

John Marshall on May 30, 2011 2:13 AM

Sweet! I’ve waited months for this review, to see how it stacks up. I’m a big Sansa fan, though, sportin’ a Clip+, and I hope this little stumble doesn’t become typical for them.

I will say I’m glad I got a 64GB Zune HD for my video needs, though.

jabrow75 on May 30, 2011 3:13 AM

The firmware updates have improved the controls compared to the original firmware. That being said, the touchpad is still a nightmare to use! Anyone coming from an original fuze over to this will want smash it to tiny bits after just a few minutes.
The firmware upgrades also changed the lock/unlock function to a press of the power button (which is a HUGE improvement!). The old lock unlock scheme was horrid (press and hold play/pause to lock, swipe down the middle to unlock).
I just dumped mine off this past week for a shiny new Cowon J3. For me, the cons with the Fuze+ were too much to overlook.

peddarson on May 30, 2011 7:59 AM

the resolution about the photos is not true. the player will resize it automatically. so you can put i.e. 600x600px pictures on the device and they’ll shown up correctly.
and to speed up navigating: just disable the album arts in the background. afterwards everything is pretty smooth.

Andreas Ødegård on May 30, 2011 9:10 AM

Yes, musichound, I did (see specs list ;) ). Didn’t do much

njren on May 30, 2011 10:11 AM

So the “‘nothing to write home about’ sound quality” is down to the switch from Austria microsystems to SigmaTel or would the reviewer also place the original Fuze in that NTWHA category?

splashback on May 30, 2011 3:32 PM

i have no idea how anyone in sandisk approved and said this was good to go to be sold to the masses with how horrible the controls are. its been how many months since and still same issue.

audioslave on May 30, 2011 4:21 PM

What happened to pros and cons? :/

eightbitsprite on May 31, 2011 2:49 AM

@Andreas
You mentioned in the video review you thought the processor was overloaded. If you trim down the amount of files on the player and remove the MicroSD card, does it run faster?
Sorry about bothering you, but I’d kinda like to know. :P

Andreas Ødegård on May 31, 2011 8:28 PM

@eightbitsprite: I really didn’t put many files on this thing at all. Doubt 100MB was used by the time the microSD was removed. More files would mean longer time to create database files, but since it actually uses such database files, the number of files shouldn’t affect it too much unless you try to set a speed record scrolling through album art

Andreas Ødegård on May 31, 2011 8:31 PM

@audioslave: Sorry forgot about those- used to another review format from our new site. Basically the pros include low price, good sound quality, nice and functional interface and high storage capacity (with expansion). Cons include touch controls and sluggishness. IN a nutshell, the player would be very impressive without those two cons.

Chris C. on May 31, 2011 8:42 PM

I own several e280s & a Fuze v.2 (which I love except for the side mounted power slide switch (ugh), but this thing seems like a train wreck. What were they thinking indeed…

remixedcat on June 1, 2011 10:45 AM

owner of a fuze v2 and my main concern for this is if you have a fully loaded SD card (8GB) how long does the media refresh take on the +? my media refresh (I kid you not) takes 25 minutes when the SD card is full and if I add just ONE SONG to it or even just rename something or simple things it does the whole refresh over and 25 minutes!

does the fuze + have this issue? has anyone tried it?

Bikermanlax on June 1, 2011 2:04 PM

You can still get the original Fuze (V2 I presume) at Amazon. After this review I’m thinking about buying one for a backup.

The Saxmaster on June 4, 2011 2:49 AM

The overall design looks much cheaper and worse than the original Fuze, which was a very nice cheap player. It’s a shame too because the interface (if it weren’t lagging and easier to control) looks pretty nice. A bit Zune-ish, but still nice.

Oh MY on June 9, 2011 5:01 AM

I bought this on the assumption that it was as good as the original Fuze. I hate being wrong :c

robomatic on June 14, 2011 10:49 PM

Fair review. To which I would add the main pro is that battery is obviously large enough to keep the thing playing far beyond a clip. A con is using a micro USB instead of a mini to interface. This is so different from the Fuse I think it is mis-named calling it a Fuse+. As the review states, navigation is horrible.

Paul A. on June 19, 2011 3:28 AM

Thanks for your review. I bought a new Fuze+ the other day, only because I like the original Fuze so much. Luckily it’s still in the box, so I’ll return it post-haste. Looks like I should get another V2 as a spare.
I don’t see many mention here of Rockbox. It’s so superior to the Sansa firmware that it’s sad! Many nice themes to choose from. Games too, although I haven’t tried any yet.

JimInPT on June 22, 2011 7:01 PM

After owning an e280 and original Fuze, I bought a Fuze+ hoping to finally get the capacity I need to hold my entire collection at once. What a mistake this purchase turned out to be!

It’s a nasty little thing, for the reasons mentioned above, plus one more: it simply collapses into uselessness once you add a memory card and start to load up several thousand tracks.

Even though it’s advertised as expandable, once I had more than about 4,000 tracks onboard it slowed to to the point of complete uselessness – it literally took over 60 seconds to respond to swipe commands at one point!

I returned it to Sandisk within days and bought a 32Gb Cowon J3. I added a 32Gb memory card and it performs lightning fast with almost 13,000 tracks onboard.

I used to like Sandisk, but no more. I’m never going back – Cowon is superior in every way.

BCFuze+Owner on July 3, 2011 6:21 PM

After six months (approximately) with a 16GB Fuze+ (w/16GB SDHC and 4,200 + tracks, an assortment of 192kbps VBR MP3 and FLAC files and the latest firmware) find the following to be true:

Slow start up. Anywhere from 45 seconds to a full minute before menus are up and useable.

Once in the Music menu selecting amongst the sub-menus (artist, album, songs, genre)
the device slows considerably between selecting from albums to songs. Get impatient and tap the control twice and it suddenly skips “songs” and blazes directly to “genre.” Not cool.

Navigating between the various menu selections and sub-menus and returning to where you began can be confusing at first. Slow operation and sketchy touchscreen controls only further add to the confusion.

I have three Sandisk MP3 players now, a Sansa Express, Fuze V2 and now the Fuze+. For all it’s drawbacks I find I most often listen to the Fuze+. Very good sound, good “hand feel” (this in regard to the ergonomic physical design and weight of the device), excellent price. All in all I’m pretty happy with it, warts and all, but I would definitely welcome some sorely needed improvements.

B

Neal on July 8, 2011 7:08 PM

I agree with the reviewer that the player looks, feels and sounds good but the touchscreen navigation is a nightmare and frustrates the hell out of me.

It has great storage capacity (16MB) but what good is it if you can’t get it to play what you want!

I don’t know what Sansa will do to get me to buy another one of their products. You have to wonder who they tested the machine on???

Westley on July 20, 2011 2:09 PM

Great storage and sound quality, terrible control interface.
This thing will not let you enjoy your music; Instead, it will make you crazy every time your try to. Before you can access to the piece you want to enjoy, you have to go through a set of carefully monitored control processes.
The control pad is too sensitive. You have to lock it every time you are playing something or it will skip or jump to another place.
I bought this thing because my old Fuze was very good and thought the fuze+ would be an upgrade. This is a bad decision and I deeply regret that. Personally I will have to think twice before buying any more Sansa product.

BCFuze+Owner on July 22, 2011 12:45 AM

Got the most recent firmware and a 32GB microSD in the Fuze+ now. Since loading the latest firmware I’m finding the player much nicer and easier to work with. No problems so far with the higher capacity memory card. All in all at the worst I’m finding the Fuze+ finicky, now.

Much happier now than I was a few weeks ago.

B.

space on July 22, 2011 6:29 AM

thank you for writing this review. my fuze just died, under warranty, and now this is all Best Buy has to “comparably” replace it. I wanted to scream when I was trying to use the interface on the display fuze+…. glad I didn’t give in and get it anyway.
thank you for doing this website. you were how I found my dearly departed fuze in the first place.

Cattus on August 5, 2011 2:24 PM

I just bought this for my wife as a gift. I then read some reviews before I gave it to her and was disgusted with the poor controls design. A call to Sansa brought me NO satisfaction – their answer – update firmware which did very little wrt the controls. One especially annoying thing is that if you are playing a song and accidentally touch the left or right side of the pad the song starts all over again – not so bad for a 4 min song but terrible if you are listening to a one hour file. I spent over an hour trying to understand and get used to the controls and in the end in spite of the positive features I brought it back to the store. Truly terrible – just what designers and testers would let this crap out of their plant is beyond me.

Roy Johnson on October 11, 2011 10:45 PM

I have the older modelFuse which is excellent. The new versions are terrible, very difficult to use.one big pain in the you know what…..We brought back the others and went to Sony….

JD on November 7, 2011 2:23 AM

“you can go nut with the wheel and it can keep up.”

LOLed at this. But definitely a good point against the Fuze+.

go10go4 on December 10, 2011 1:21 AM

This is the kind of device that can set a company back 10 years in terms of its reputation and stance in the technology community. SanDisk enjoyed a position of prominence among device users before this disaster appeared. Many like myself have purchased numerous SanDisk hardware devices and always enjoyed the ease and reliability of their operation. Not so with the Fuze+. It’s navigation schema is very questionable, since capacitive controls serve more than one function dependent upon the task chosen. This leads the user to often wonder at what point he or she is in the program, and worse yet, leaves the user with a helpless feeling that it may not be possible to get to a desired location without a myriad of touches – assuming that the user knows where to even go given the current location. Worse than the navigational failure is the failure of the device to respond in a reliable fashion. The user simply can’t depend upon the unit to always work as intended. One moment it appears to function as would appear intended; the next it is totally unresponsive and leaves the user yearning to hit the power off button. This is a very flawed product which could have placed SanDisk in a position of relative importance as an alternative to the Apple IPod. Instead the company has humiliated itself in the technology industry and caused many to wonder if they can ever trust another SanDisk product.

rmd on December 20, 2011 5:01 AM

I made the absolute mistake of buying the Fuze+ 16GB. Out of the box, the unit would not accept a charge and there is no way to change the battery or access the internal charger. An online search revealed that quite a few others have had problems with the charger on this thing and that it stops charging and goes dead after some usage.

The only thing this product accomplishes is to be an excellent advertisement for Apple’s products.

Do yourself a favor and buy something else.

figgy on December 26, 2011 7:43 PM

I’m glad to find agreement about the controls. I didn’t know if it was just my pent up frustration about the evil, practically unopenable packaging, but when I tried to work the thing I found myself wanting to throw it against the wall.

Walter on December 29, 2011 4:23 PM

The fuze + scroll feature can be greatly increased by updating the firmware and by rubbing your finger long the direction arrows quickly or slowly. I rub my finger very quickly on the down arrow and go from bottom to top or top to bottom quickly and the scroll time is very impressive. This makes a great difference in enjoyment quality.

Modulus on January 1, 2012 5:54 AM

Sandisk fixed the touchpad bugs. I was curious as to how bad it really was, so I played with one at Best Buy for about 20 min. It completely failed to malfunction. The one I purchased is working as well as a $60 player can possibly be expected to. The touchpad is completely bug free; much better than the Zen Vision M’s was. My only complaint is that some menu options like delete file or artist are missing (you have to delete files one at a time). Also, I can’t figure out a way to make a playlist one album at a time. If you want a cheap high capacity player that is sized for adults (I took one look at the Clip and said “My thumb is bigger than that button pad.”), check out out at a an electronics store.

pygmy on January 31, 2012 6:27 AM

Okay. The touchpad rage is not just me. I feel slightly less antiquated. I loved my Clip — it was simple and nearly indestructible (it finally succumbed after 5 years of professional kitchen abuse). So when a gift card for a certain overblown electronics store crossed my path for the holidays (and nothing else in the store appealed to me) I went with the Fuze+, even though I couldn’t read any of the specs on the box due to it being mangled and obscured by a giant anti-theft brick, and hadn’t done any research (hey, free money). I wasn’t aware at the time of purchase that the controls were capacitive-touch. Because of insane callouses from my profession (chef), touchscreens hate me, and this was no different. I’m about to do a firmware upgrade, and I’m hoping this improves things a bit. I’m saddened by the move to iStupid-style scrolling picture menus instead of a logical series of text-based nested menus. Call me old-fashioned, but I am not a fan of the White Plastic iFuture where nobody reads words. I find the sound quality (and volume! so many players skimp on volume) to be more than acceptable, and I like the idea of expandability, but if the controls don’t improve with the firmware upgrade, I will likely return it and go back to my dinosaur-backup spinning-disk Archos player. All the shiny pictures and storage mean squat if I can’t actually get to them.

Steve on February 18, 2012 3:19 PM

The Fuse+ is a piece of junk. No update has every made this work for me. The start button is so stuff that I have to almost break my thumb to get it to work or press hard down on a desk surface. The touch thing is not even near working to select a specific file. Touch it and it travels and undertmined amount to a random selection never stopping where desired.

Freddy on February 26, 2012 4:36 AM

I’m very sorry to read these comments as I was thinking on buying one. The features listed in it’s website were attractive.
There is a refurbished 4gb Sansa Fuze+ on ebay for $45…
I’ve been also reading some reviews on the Cowon C2 but this is 150 dollars for a 4G (it’s expandable).
Now I don’t know what to purchase…

Barb Davis on March 26, 2012 6:28 PM

I wish I had read this before I bought a Fuze+. It was my 3rd Sansa player and I loved the Sandisk and the Fuze. After the Fuze lost a run-in with a car tire, I went for a replacement. I thought this would be even better. The touchpad is too horrible to believe. I guess I’m glad it isn’t just me. Another problem is that when I download audio books from the library, it thinks they are music and won’t play them in order or remember where it stopped.

LegendsOfBatman on April 10, 2012 12:37 AM

Touch is REALLY bad on this. To start with, I pressed English as the language of choice; some other scribbley language is what “took”. Now it is looking like the only way to alter the language is to go through an obnoxiously annoying process.
I knew there was going to be a problem when I had to open the package with a buzz-saw. (Thats a slight exaggeration– nevertheless, the process was agonizing, and resulted in the packaging being demolished, and that is literally speaking).
So, here I am sitting waiting for a live support person, and no music. and they claim the fastest way to get issues solved is coming here. Nope. The fastest way is in fact to return this product to where it was purchased, and get something–anything else.

Guy Boisvert on May 22, 2012 2:02 PM

I bought it “by accident” not noticing that this “thing” didn’t have the same controls as the Fuze V2 that my girlfriend bought before me.

I noticed instantly how bad was the controls on the Fuze+. I really don’t know who the hell approved those total crap controls at Sandisk, that’s a complete waste

keith on June 20, 2012 6:51 PM

I just purchased one, and if you’ve never had a MP3 player like myself, this little wonder is more than enough. I have not found the touchscreen to be difficult, but then there’s nothing wrong with my hands for fingers. I found that transfering music from a device to it went well, I’ve had videos transfered, no problem looks great. I’ve added 8GB no problem, So if you don’t want a MP player that slides in your shirt pocket, easy to cut on/off or if you can’t navigate the push system. This is not for you. However if you are not alien to touch systems, nearly everything has it, you actually will be happy, unlike the earlier contributors.

murrayNE on June 23, 2012 1:52 PM

I couldn’t agree more. I had a Fuze and it was the best MP3 player I’d ever seen, bar none. When it started going through periodic switch-offs after a long life, I naturally sought a replacement from the same family. It plays well, but every time I want to do so little as go back to the start of a track it irritates the hell out of me. Actually, I say “so little as”, but the “left” button (navigate left/go back to start of track/go to previous track) is the very worst of the navigation buttons. attempts to click it are interpreted as clicks of the central button or the “up menu level” button two-thirds of the time. I literally sat down and experimented with touching the whole left side of the control pad, mapping it out with 5mm movements of my little finger at a time (less than that in the more relevant areas) and I couldn’t find an area that was interpreted as a left-click more than about half of the time. I wish that your page was the very top Google hit for “Sansa Fuze+”, because I’d love to know for sure that Sansa/Sandisk had seen the very fair feedback you’d given. If they said “Oops, sorry, here’s the Fuze++ that’s an actual worthy successor to the Fuze, with the same navigation, I would forgive all and buy it again in a heartbeat, but since getting the Fuze+ (with which I have had to persist due to finances/repurposing the occasionally-faulting Fuze for my kids), I have actually advised someone against buying a newer Sandisk product on the basis of them releasing a device with such obvious poor field-testing as the Fuze+. It certainly stopped me from buying a Sandisk USB the other day, and they had been my brand of choice in recent years.

Jeff g on September 21, 2012 6:18 AM

My Fuze power button broke, so my wife got me the + as a gift. Guess I am stuck with it. I really dislike the controls. Forget searching through long play lists or audio book chapters. I swear I hit the exact same spot, but it does not think so and shift me to the next menu, then I have to start the long trek down the list again. Forget about using this device at night time. I really miss the old Fuze nav wheel.

james wallace on October 22, 2012 2:23 AM

Hated the interface. Couldn’t pick the thing up without it doing something I didn’t want it to. I gave it away.

cwj on December 18, 2012 4:17 AM

So, does anyone know if Sandisk has at all acknowledged the fervent distaste for this control scheme? Any offerings amends besides updates that change nothing (so it seems). I’m getting white screens on my Fuzes and would like an alternative to the tiny devices. Those have their place, but the wheel was just right for my needs.

Bart Z. Lederman on January 8, 2013 1:13 PM

I sure wish I had known about this page before I bought one.

I have an E200 and like it very much: but it took a power hit and is getting erratic. I wanted a player with more capacity and an FM tuner, and got a Fuze+. Biggest media purchase mistake I ever made: it’s a good deal worse than the comments here.

I can’t even FIND the playlists. The instructions say go to music and select the playlist tab: I can’t find it anywhere, no matter what I push or swipe or tap. I can add to playlists and create them but i can’t find them. I have had a series of severe stomach aches in the few days I’ve tried to use this device. If anyone can help me at least FIND the playlists, I would be very grateful.

I don’t plan on ever buying another Sansa product, but I can’t afford to just dump this player.

Sharon Webley on April 5, 2013 3:46 PM

I have persevered with this heap of * for too long already. It’s going in the bin and I’m buying a cheap Bush MP3 player. I already had the Sansa Fuze which was easy to use and did the job but after a couple of years, the battery wasn’t lasting very long so I bought the Fuze Plus. I wish I hadn’t. It takes about 10 seconds to boot up and load and comes on in pause mode, so you have to wait those 10 seconds and then press the play button. I also hate not having a positive touch to navigate around the menus. The menus are very difficult to get to, and it keeps getting stuck in a loop of the same 10 songs, or it picks a certain letter and only plays artists beginning with that letter. If you’re driving when it does that, you’re either stuck with it or you have to pull over to try to get it to rethink. Total rubbish.

David Joseph on May 1, 2013 9:48 PM

I have purchased the sansafuze+ mp3 player,the 1st one i got i had to take back, it was an obvious failure, and it passed their inspection, The 2nd one i received was equally as bad!! 1) HARD TO NAVIGATE 2) I HAD PUT 940 SONGS ON THE 2ND ONE, IT WOULDN’T PLAY THE SONGS THE WAY IT WAS SYNCHRONISED OFF THE COMPUTER!!!3) STAY AWAY FROM IT, A TOTAL PIECE OF JUNK, I’M GOING TO GET MY MONEY BACK!!

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