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  #1  
Old 09-21-2009, 03:19 PM
MrMojo MrMojo is offline
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Default Sony NWZ-E345

Hello to all!

I'm new here!

Have owned iPods for many years and wanted something different but didn't really want to spend alot of money. Went to a Sony factory store and saw the NWZ-E345 and liked it so I bought it (w/25% discount along with a lower marked price than retail).

Don't know anything about Sony's mp3 players but do own SE phone. Using it's media player would shorten the phone's battery life so I wanted a dedicated mp3 player.

My thoughts after using it after a short time:
Pros:
1. Small/compact like nano (considering the E series, as I found out later after purchase, was suppose to compete with Apple's Nano line).
2. E series is the entry-level model.
- Just looking for a decent music player similar to nano, nothing fancy!
3. Good music quality
4. Decent video playback but won't use it since it's so small, it hurts my eyes, similar to the Nano's!
5. Has Mini-USB port for charging (use an old phone charger with mini-USB)!
6. Able to drag n drop iTunes playlists to Content Transfer to transfer to player!

CONS:
1. CRAPPY Content Transfer software!
- Sony can NOT make a media software for their hardware like their mp3 players or phones! Period!
- NO ripping or file editing (i.e. tag files with album art)
- NO playlist creation (best for compilations; never used album folders for listening)
- S-L-O-W transfer speed
- Drag n drop is OK but files must are already tagged with album art to use feature instead of seeing Sony logo!
2. Must use computer cable for charging!
- Used to having an AC charger for iPod
- Must get a phone charger with Mini USB to charge player!
3. Sony's Media Manager does NOT work with device (similar to #1 Con)!
4. Rebuild library at every startup - VERY time consuming and Frustrating!
5. Plastic case is PRONE to smudges and is a Dust magnet (NO cases available yet from Sony store)!
6. Crappy Sony earphones.
- I use Shure SCL-4 for sound isolation
7. Functions/features could be more user-friendly like the iPods!

Did I miss something here? I've read that the players are good music players but everything else Sucks!
Guess I'm spoiled using iPods!
Music is better sound-wise but features leave much to be desired!

Read that the higher-end models just add features but features/functions are almost identical and use the same Crappy software!

Anyway, it's a "decent" player so I'll keep it but will question whether or not to buy any future Sony mp3 players!

Any one faced similar thoughts with Sony mp3 players esp. the E series?

I'm still new at this but my experience has left me kind disappointed!
Should have done research before letting my emotions tell me to buy!

I like the new S640/S740 series that about to be released in Asia but est. cost for high capacity versions are ~ $20,000-25,000 Yen ~ $220-275 USD using ~92 conversion rate! Check out AmazonJP!

Now I'll have to check out the new S series when it's released! This will be researched first before buying =

Thank you!

Last edited by MrMojo; 09-21-2009 at 06:24 PM. Reason: Update grammar/thoughts/amounts
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  #2  
Old 09-21-2009, 03:40 PM
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quintets_man quintets_man is offline
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The E-Series is Sony's budget player and most people here recommend to avoid it and go with the S or A-Series. As to your pro's and cons.

Pros:
1. Small/compact like nano (considering the E series, as I found out later after purchase, was suppose to compete with Apple's Nano line).
2. E series is the entry-level model.
- Just looking for a decent music player similar to nano, nothing fancy!
3. Good music quality
4. Decent video playback but won't use it since it's so small, it hurts my eyes, similar to the Nano's!
5. Has Mini-USB port for charging (use an old phone charger with mini-USB)!
The S and A Series use their own proprietary cable not a standard mini-usb port.
6. Able to drag n drop iTunes playlists to Content Transfer to transfer to player!

CONS:
1. CRAPPY Content Transfer software!
- Sony can NOT make a media software for their hardware like their mp3 players or phones! Period!
- NO ripping or file editing (i.e. tag files with album art)
- NO playlist creation
- S-L-O-W transfer speed
You don't have to use their software
2. Must use computer cable for charging!!
Don't really understand this complaint. Most players require a USB cables to charge unless it like the Sony B-Series in which case it looks like a flash drive.
3. Sony's Media Manager does NOT work with device!!
Never bothered with it so can't comment on that. Just drag n drop or use something like Mediamonkey to sync.
4. Rebuild library at every start - VERY time consuming and FRUSTRATING!
Are you talking about whenever you unplug it from the computer? Or whenever you turn it on? Heard the old E-Series had a similar problem, guess Sony never bothered to look into it.
5. Plastic case is PRONE to smudges and is a Dust magnet (NO cases available yet from Sony store)!
My old S610 is plastic and its just fine after 2 1/2 years case free.
6. Crappy Sony earphones
The S639 and the New S-Series(Not S540)/A-Series come with excellent iem's
7. Functions/features could be more user-friendly like the iPods!
Can't complain here as I use my strictly for music.

And about the S-Series being $300-500. Are you referring to the S540 or the new S6/740? I'll assume from amazon JP that your in Japan then, correct me if I'm wrong
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  #3  
Old 11-02-2009, 08:28 AM
ExZen ExZen is offline
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Just bought a E345, find it great for music playback. Very solid sound quality (better than the Clip+ I had) Decent EQ, good tactile controls. Price can't be beat either. The E series is basically the S series without the built in speakers (right down to identical SQ)

Included earbuds are lacking, so I grabbed a pair of RE2 and a E5 to pair up with it.

The E series seems to be mainly for people who was an affordable DAP and who don't care about extra features. Just be sure the replace the included earbuds
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  #4  
Old 11-02-2009, 11:38 AM
CDMP3PlayerFan CDMP3PlayerFan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ExZen View Post
Just bought a E345, find it great for music playback. Very solid sound quality (better than the Clip+ I had) Decent EQ, good tactile controls. Price can't be beat either. The E series is basically the S series without the built in speakers (right down to identical SQ)

Included earbuds are lacking, so I grabbed a pair of RE2 and a E5 to pair up with it.

The E series seems to be mainly for people who was an affordable DAP and who don't care about extra features. Just be sure the replace the included earbuds
One question about the E345: does it have the frequent library rebuilding issue that was a problem with the previous E series player?
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  #5  
Old 11-02-2009, 12:11 PM
ExZen ExZen is offline
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Not that I have found. My girlfriend has the E456 (I think? Its the 4 gig model from the previous generation) and I know what you're talking about. I've hadded about 5 gigs onto my player now, and the only time it builds the library is right after I put music on and boot it up. Even then it only takes about 10 seconds.

I will keep you updated as I spend more time with the player. I imagine it will start getting a lot more use when I get my new headphones.
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  #6  
Old 11-02-2009, 01:18 PM
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Marvin the Martian Marvin the Martian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CDMP3PlayerFan View Post
One question about the E345: does it have the frequent library rebuilding issue that was a problem with the previous E series player?
Quote:
Originally Posted by ExZen View Post
Not that I have found. My girlfriend has the E456 (I think? Its the 4 gig model from the previous generation) and I know what you're talking about. I've hadded about 5 gigs onto my player now, and the only time it builds the library is right after I put music on and boot it up. Even then it only takes about 10 seconds.

I will keep you updated as I spend more time with the player. I imagine it will start getting a lot more use when I get my new headphones.
If the new "E" is as close to the new "S" as it seems, the library thing should not be an issue.

The S545 goes into a "sleep" mode for four hours after you power down, which allows instant-on from that state. After four hours, when you start up, you get a building library screen for a few seconds(no more than 10 seconds,even with 14GB/1,982 songs on it) and then it's just like before. I never even push the button to "power down" which would take you to sleep mode, I just pause it, and within a few minutes it does it on its own.
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  #7  
Old 11-02-2009, 05:37 PM
ExZen ExZen is offline
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Thanks Marvin, I was actually wondering about the "sleep" mode last night. I couldn't figure out why it kept turning on without me powering it on, and why it was so damn fast. That explains why the battery life is likely lower than the last "e" generation.
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  #8  
Old 11-15-2009, 08:57 AM
ouini ouini is offline
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Default E438F comparison

E345 vs E438F

Pros:
...
4. Decent video playback but won't use it since it's so small, it hurts my eyes, similar to the Nano's!
I like the video playback, too. But yeah, with widescreen, it's too much.
5. Has Mini-USB port for charging (use an old phone charger with mini-USB)!
Mine is E-series, and it has a proprietary connector cable that costs $27 to replace! (And the doc that came with it told me to buy the wrong replacement cable!)
6. Able to drag n drop iTunes playlists to Content Transfer to transfer to player!
It is nice to drag iTunes songs to, in my case, Windows Media Player. And ...
7. It's also nice that if I convert any kind of video to .mp4 (to play on the Sony), it will also play on my wife's iPod.

CONS:
1. CRAPPY Content Transfer software!
Agreed.
2. Must use computer cable for charging!
Don't get me started.
...
4. Rebuild library at every startup - VERY time consuming and Frustrating!
I don't get this. The Library is only created after a sync, or after the unit has been off for more than four hours.
5. Plastic case is PRONE to smudges and is a Dust magnet (NO cases available yet from Sony store)!
I don't have smudge problems. And I slapped a piece of scratch-resistant plastic over its screen, and haven't had any trouble.
...
7. Functions/features could be more user-friendly like the iPods!
I guess it depends on what you're used to. I don't like the touchy dial on my wife's iPod.

Last edited by ouini; 11-15-2009 at 09:10 AM.
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  #9  
Old 11-16-2009, 01:34 PM
Geologist Geologist is offline
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I bought this player a couple of weeks ago and I'm having trouble using it. It works fine with one computer but not my main one(which has 90% of my music).

When I connect the player it recognizes that it's a Walkman/MTP device and then the Found New Hardware wizard comes up. When I go to My Computer, the walkman is not there.

I looked up the player's FAQ on the Sony site and it told me to direct the Found New Hardware wizard to C:\Windows\INF, which I did, but still the wizard failed to install properly.

I sent an email to Sony support and they basically told me nothing and gave me a phone number to call.

I called them and the guy on the other end seemed pretty bored and when I told him that it worked on one computer and not the other, that must've been one of their secret phrases and at that point he told me there's nothing he could do.

I don't understand why it's not working. Both computers are running Windows XP SP3. I've tried several different USB ports(and did the other things http://www.kb.sony.com/selfservice/d...rnalId=C549700 told me to do). I know the player works because it worked with another computer. I know the cable isn't defective. I know the USB port isn't defective because other USB devices work just fine. I know my player is supposed to work with my OS.

Does anyone know any possible reason something like this would be happening? I tried to find an official Sony support forum but I don't think it exists and I have no idea who to ask now that their online/phone support has given me the cold shoulder.
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Old 11-16-2009, 01:55 PM
Dreamnine Dreamnine is offline
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That sounds ominous - the new E series are supposed to be better than the old E series.

It should work with every computer. Not sure what I can suggest.
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  #11  
Old 11-25-2009, 12:26 PM
JK98 JK98 is offline
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Do you think Sony will make players that are better at handling podcasts, and that support files down to 8 kbps? How is Sony at firmware updates? Some manufactures don't seem to put energy into firmware updates. I am still looking for a player that has variable speed playback with pitch correction. I might have to buy a recorder to get this.
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  #12  
Old 11-25-2009, 01:13 PM
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Marvin the Martian Marvin the Martian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JK98 View Post
Do you think Sony will make players that are better at handling podcasts, and that support files down to 8 kbps? How is Sony at firmware updates? Some manufactures don't seem to put energy into firmware updates. I am still looking for a player that has variable speed playback with pitch correction. I might have to buy a recorder to get this.
Sony releases very few firmware updates, as historically most of their players are stable right out of the gates.There is a folder browser , so presumably one could put podcasts on there, but I imagine there would be no bookmarking. As far as supporting down to 8kbps, do you get that with the Sansas? I know you want to save space and all, but that seems a little extreme.

I just tried the variable speed on my Q2, and it does seem to adjust the pitch....and the battery life would be agreeable to you....but I don't think it will keep track of where you stopped in more than one podcast if you stopped it and listened to music. And of course, asides from the infamous touchpad controls, there is no card slot.

Your ideal player probably does not exist....you'll have to decide what qualifications you can live without.
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  #13  
Old 12-01-2009, 01:23 PM
JK98 JK98 is offline
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The Sandisk players definitely play files as low as 16 kbps mp3 and 12 kbps wma. I have used these on my Sandisk players. I don't know about 8 kbps though. 8 kbps mp3 has too many artifacts though, and is painful to listen to. 16 kbps mp3 and 12 kbps wma can be decent though if the original recordings are good quality.

The Q2 is back up to $80 for the 8 GB. I was considering it when it was on sale for $60. The Sony players are on sale now at B&H, with the 8 GB E344 at $64 with free shipping. Not bad at all!

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search...655+4291215468
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  #14  
Old 12-02-2009, 04:54 PM
stargazer stargazer is offline
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Just came home with a 16gb sony e-345 from WalMart, $100.76 out the door with a one year extended replacement warranty included in price. Sure is tiny! No extra garbage features that I don't want. First thing when I got home I tried a mini usb cable, yes, perfect fit. Tried listening a quick bit to the awful demos, plenty loud but sounded like mp3. Verified that they were mp3 with my computer, and deleted everything and formatted it with it's own internal format program. I easily played the demos, set time and 24hr format, date and US date format, and cruised the menus without any false moves or reading of instructions.

I just loaded .wav albums and am letting it charge. Perhaps I'll report back, but I'm sure it will sound fine, and with the one yr. replacement I'm not too worried about durability.

After seeing pictures on the web I can't believe how tiny it is. Smaller and thinner and lighter than my Sansa e-250's. Looked at the s series also, a bit bigger to fit the useless speakers, and lots more holes for dust and moisture. I'm willing to bet they have the same amplifiers and DAC's. In my lifetime, sony has always led the way with sound quality. But, I've had over half a dozen mini disc recorders that just did not last. Several cost $400 each. Generally it was the recording part that died, plus, they had lots of moving parts, instead of none.

I wanted the 32gb model, but don't want a stupid touch screen or wireless nonsense. May be more solid, but lots more to go wrong. Touch screen dies and you are done, even if all else is fine. For the money, I could get three of the e-345's off the web with money left over. The disadvantage would be changing the machine out every 20 hrs. or so (with .wav files), the advantage would be that if I got a lemon, I'd still have another 32gb of music on two working machines. I do like back up, since things always tend to go wrong.
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Old 12-16-2009, 10:14 PM
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lestatar lestatar is offline
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Default Sony E345 - nearly perfect IMO, but some HUGE FRUSTRATIONS...

All:

New here and thought I might chime in as I just purchased a Sony E345. I noticed some interesting points from the OP on this thread, and I agree with just about all the comments.

The player simply sounds great, but I expected that from Sony and through my decent headphones.

Screen is terrific, navigation is a bit clunky but livable.

Battery life seems very good and within expected norms so far.

I prefer the dockless, universal USB charging feature.

Size and form factor is unbeatable. The unit is so slim and while maybe a tad lighter than I would have hoped for, the case seems stiff and sturdy enough at this point. I also just used a piece of Invisible Shield I had leftover from my cell phone, cut it to size and have installed it on the E345. It should do wonders towards eliminating screens scratches. [btw, the Invisible Shield brand of screen protectors is awesome - supposedly Military Grade film...]

So I am almost in love with this Sony...but some HUGE ISSUES are sticking in my craw.

- It is HORRIBLE that I cannot create playlists on the device;

- It is UNBELIEVABLE that I cannot delete songs from the device;

- It is SUPER ANNOYING that I cannot append new songs/albums to the NOW PLAYING queue [whatever you are playing at the moment is removed as soon as you select and play something else].

After using many other MP3 players, I cannot tell you how much it really irritates me that these 3 basic abilities are missing from the E345. I understand it is the "budget" line, but as far as I am concerned, these abilities all fall under the ABSOLUTE MINIMUM category for MP3 players.

Missing these basic functions means that I MUST do everything while the device is connected to a PC.

WHY??? Isn't this an MP3 player which is supposed to be PORTABLE?

Am I crazy here or do others feel the same way?

I have complained long and loud to Sony tech support [sympathetic, but unable to offer real help].

Am I wasting my time hoping and praying for some kind of FW updates to address these oh-so-simple to remedy issues?

Also, on WIN XP, the device does indeed work with Winamp and Mediamonkey, but Winamp seems to be able to more fully work [MM sees the device, but cannot display an "all songs" listing...Winamp works perfectly with the device]. I did not install any of the included software.

<sigh> Sorry for the rant. But I just wanted to chime in here and voice my frustrations at Sony - this device is so close to being a home run for me that I am really P'Oed.

I am extremely curious to hear other users' experience with this device and in fact, with other Sony MP3 players since this is my first Sony player.

Thanks and cheers,
-lestatar
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Old 12-16-2009, 11:09 PM
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Marvin the Martian Marvin the Martian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lestatar View Post
So I am almost in love with this Sony...but some HUGE ISSUES are sticking in my craw.
- It is HORRIBLE that I cannot create playlists on the device;
- It is UNBELIEVABLE that I cannot delete songs from the device;
- It is SUPER ANNOYING that I cannot append new songs/albums to the NOW PLAYING queue [whatever you are playing at the moment is removed as soon as you select and play something else].
This doesn't bother me in the least. But I don't switch around what's on mine very often, so I have no need to be able to delete songs. And I'm not a playlist guy......I either shuffle all, shuffle artist, or select an album.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lestatar View Post
Am I crazy here or do others feel the same way?
Am I wasting my time hoping and praying for some kind of FW updates to address these oh-so-simple to remedy issues?
There are some others that feel that way....and Sony doesn't issue updates very often.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lestatar View Post
I am extremely curious to hear other users' experience with this device and in fact, with other Sony MP3 players since this is my first Sony player.
Thanks and cheers,
-lestatar
Mine is an S545 which is very similar to your player. I do wish mine had the standard USB cable like yours does, mine has a proprietary one.

Like you though, I love the sound and the battery life.
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  #17  
Old 12-17-2009, 12:08 AM
CDMP3PlayerFan CDMP3PlayerFan is offline
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lestatar wrote as part of a post:

Quote:
Originally Posted by lestatar View Post
So I am almost in love with this Sony...but some HUGE ISSUES are sticking in my craw.

- It is HORRIBLE that I cannot create playlists on the device;

- It is UNBELIEVABLE that I cannot delete songs from the device;

- It is SUPER ANNOYING that I cannot append new songs/albums to the NOW PLAYING queue [whatever you are playing at the moment is removed as soon as you select and play something else].
I haven't found the above to be a limitation. I view my player as a just player, and leave the above to be handled by my music management software (MediaMonkey). For me, doing the above work on my computer is much easier than on an audio player.

Based on what I've seen of Sony players, the basic principle seems to be: keep it simple and reliable. They may not have all of the features of the other players, but the ones they do have work perfectly. This may be the reason that Sony audio players rarely have firmware updates (I don't remember hearing of one).

This may be the reason that the user interface has stayed basically the same for the last few models. I've found it very intuitive and easy to use, and have rarely needed to check the instruction manual after an initial look.

About the only feature I'd like to see added to the interface is the ability to change the icons. For example, I don't use my player for videos or photos, so I'd like to replace those icons with ones I do use (like with ones for playlists that I do use).

Thanks for reading.
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Old 12-17-2009, 12:13 AM
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Curiouss Curiouss is offline
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Sorry, Im not gonna bother reading the previous 15 comments, so I just say:

-Yes, Sony's included software is crap, don't bother using it
-instead, I recommend Media Go
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Old 12-17-2009, 01:24 AM
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lestatar lestatar is offline
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Default Surprised I may be in the minority!

Interesting. As I read people's responses here [thanks to all so far], I must confess to being surprised.

While I am a tech pro who is no stranger to portable devices, I consider myself to be a fairly basic mp3 user. My primary needs are sound quality, storage capacity, form factor and battery life. I never gave much thought to alot of bells and whistles in my mp3 devices. Video? Totally not a need for me - I just can't see myself watching anything at all on the tiny [albeit fairly nice] screens on devices like this Sony. Even embedding album art is a new luxury for me with this Sony E345, but I liked the concept so much I have now updated all 8000 of my mp3 tags with 300x300 pics.

But I am really surprised that more folks aren't as irritated as I am about the lack of basic playlist edit functionality and the ability to delete songs directly from the unit. Every single mp3 player I have ever had [about 6 or so] have had these basic functions.

What I find even more irritating is the way this Sony simply doesn't allow me to append songs/albums to the Now Playing queue and I am very surprised this doesn't bother folks either.

Here is a real world example:

I rip 3 new CDs I haven't heard yet. I go through my tag and rename process, embed art and then transfer to the player. Let's say that out of 36 songs [average of 12 per CD] there are 3-4 "keepers" I want to have on the device [at least for awhile]. The rest I want to delete from the device. Without the ability to delete directly from the device, I now must REMEMBER all the tracks I want to ditch until I can connect to my PC.

This seems plain silly to me! Again, it's a PORTABLE mp3 player right?

Another example of the other big limitation:

I am listening to those same 3 CDs but now want to add some other tunes to the Now Playing queue - maybe stuff from the same artists I already have on the device or whatever. With the Sony, I can't! This is a huge shortcoming - an either/or situation with no ability to append to what's currently playing - that I just cannot understand why it's missing.

In retrospect, even not having basic playlist editing/creation on the device doesn't seem as bad as not having the abilty to handle these first two examples from the device itself. To me, not having these basic functions would be like having to sync my Blackberry to my PC to delete my unwanted emails...kind of...

Don't get me wrong. Like I said in my post, I really really LIKE the E345 overall!

Am I just crazy or are my needs/expectations actually more "advanced" thank I thought?

Again, apologies for the small rant but thanks for the comments! I am obviously interested to hear more feedback from other folks, especially on their usage habits/needs.

cheers,
-lestatar
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Old 12-17-2009, 08:37 AM
MattMc3 MattMc3 is offline
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@lestatar: You'd be suprised how much people's priorities vary in what they find important in MP3 players. Nobody is right or wrong though, just different opinions.

Since you asked for opinions:
- On the go playlists: I don't use playlists at all. I either listen to a specific song, a specific album, or use random. The lack of on-the-go playlists doesn't bother me at all.
- Deleting tracks from the player: I keep my full music library on my MP3 player. My complete library is around 11-12GB, probably pretty small compared to some others. I don't delete individual tracks at all, so this isn't an issue for me (I do delete videos after I watch them - which the S545 allows you to do). Sony allows you to do it for videos, so it can't be that hard to do it for audio. It probably should be a menu option, even though I wouldn't use it if it was there.
- Playback queue: When the song/album that I'm listening to is done playing then I choose the next item to listen to. Sony players don't have any type of queue that I know of. This is a non-issue for me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lestatar View Post
After using many other MP3 players, I cannot tell you how much it really irritates me that these 3 basic abilities are missing from the E345. I understand it is the "budget" line...

Am I wasting my time hoping and praying for some kind of FW updates to address these oh-so-simple to remedy issues?
The E345 is the budget player in Sony's lineup, but none of their players have these features that you listed (that I know of - please correct me if I'm wrong,) even the top of the line players (though I'm not familiar with the X series). And don't expect a firmware update soon. Sony rarely releases firmware updates. When they do it's to fix bugs, not to add new features.

Matt
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