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Old 05-22-2010, 10:13 PM
Gerbilkit Gerbilkit is offline
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Default New Budget Mp3 Player

I am looking to buy a new mp3 player with a budget of about $80. I have had two mp3 players before this, both were sandisk the most recent being the sansa e280. I was pleased with both of them (no problems or breakage, it just got stolen), but I am looking to change a few features this time and was looking for some advice.

I don't care at all about video, I never did see the appeal of watching video on a tiny screen. I listen to a lot of audio books, lectures, and other audio files so I would really like a much more efficient fast forward and rewind feature so I can skip quickly through long tracks.

This is more of a preference/education issue. But I really got tired of having to change all the albums on my files in order for them to be sorted on the player. Reading the forums it sounds like this is called ID3? I have a lot of music already sorted this way, and so I will probably have to stick with it but I would like a faster and easier way to do it so maybe that's not so much a player issue as a software issue, if anyone has suggestions. I'm running ubuntu 10.04.

While the more capacity the better, I'm not looking for anything smaller than 8GB. Also physically, I like to use it while riding my bike so nothing huge, at the same time something really tiny like an ipod shuffle is rather obnoxious to manipulate in my pocket.


In Summary:
1. Budget of about $80.
2. Good fast forward/rewind features
3. Good organization of music files
4. At least 8 GB of space.
5. Not enormous or really tiny

Thank you for any suggestions or general information. I may also post anything I run across to consider.
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Old 05-22-2010, 10:21 PM
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The DarkSide The DarkSide is offline
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Sony E Series might be of interest, check it's specs on Amazon, as well as the latest pricing. Usually it goes for around $80 for 16gb in that model - and the SQ is fantastic, as well as the battery life.
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Old 05-22-2010, 10:34 PM
Gerbilkit Gerbilkit is offline
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I have been looking at some of the Sony e-XXX series and I'm liking the looks and reviews although I haven't found a particular model I want yet. I was looking at this one on Amazon which is a Zen? I've never really heard of Zen before so I don't know if they're any good or not, the low price makes me a little suspicious but maybe it's just a good deal.

http://www.amazon.com/Creative-Zen-M...4581404&sr=1-5
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Old 05-22-2010, 10:49 PM
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FreeZ5 FreeZ5 is offline
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The previous Sony E family units seemed to get a lot of negative press here at ABi. However the current E44x family seems to be well-liked.

The Sansa Clip+ also sounds like it would be a good choice. Songs can be browsed with both id tags (which good ripping software will set for you), and with folder view. Although the largest is 8GB, they accept a micro CDHC card, so the capacity can be increased that way. The clip on the Clip+ should be ideal for bike riding.

Steve
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  #5  
Old 05-22-2010, 10:58 PM
saratoga saratoga is offline
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2GB Clip+ and a 16GB microsd card. $63 for both on Amazon, maybe cheaper if you shop around.

Can do file browsing or id3 view (in rockbox or the sandisk software). Works fine in ubuntu.
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Old 05-22-2010, 11:01 PM
Gerbilkit Gerbilkit is offline
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Nothing really personal but I actually really dislike the sansa clip. And sansa's organization method is something I would like to avoid in the future. (for one thing that SD chip just looks like it's waiting to be lost/ruined)

I really wish I could just drag and drop and put stuff in the order I want without messing around with tags, and just view things in folders. I don't know why this seemingly is not possible.

I took a better look on Amazon, and I found two models in my price range at 16 GB that I liked. The e 345 and the NWZE345BLK

These seem to be really similar so I'm not sure what I should be looking for. Does anyone have any experience with these, i.e. their organizational abilities, and their track navigation features? Thanks again.

EDIT: He he wasn't looking they are the same ignore the noob :P

http://www.amazon.com/Sony-Walkman-E...pr_product_top

http://www.amazon.com/Sony-Walkman-N...pr_product_top

Last edited by Gerbilkit; 05-22-2010 at 11:08 PM.
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  #7  
Old 05-22-2010, 11:03 PM
saratoga saratoga is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerbilkit View Post
I really wish I could just drag and drop and put stuff in the order I want without messing around with tags, and just view things in folders. I don't know why this seemingly is not possible.
You can actually do this.

Edit: heh i'm not nuts, I did mention this in my first post
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Old 05-22-2010, 11:04 PM
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The Zen is 1 of the worst players out, avoid it please. The Sansa Fuze or clip are great choices, can't go wrong for the $$$.

Now, the Sony E Series is a personal fav of mine, as it's a great deal for 16gb of excellent SQ - I personally love the Sony sound sig - and most agree after trying a Sony out.
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  #9  
Old 05-22-2010, 11:36 PM
Gerbilkit Gerbilkit is offline
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I am really liking the looks of the e345. However I am not sure apart from buying it, or talking to someone who listens to audio books how effective it would be for such tasks. It took me absolute ages to scroll through songs on my sansa and I would really like to have an easier time of it.

EDIT: Actually after reading some reviews, it sounds like Sony is pretty bad for audio books, which is a pity as I really liked the model. I was reading this
http://www.anythingbutipod.com/archi...p3-players.php
And it sounds like the Sansa is actually the best for audio books, which is good to hear as I like Sansa but my e280 was horrible for audio books. I'll take a look at the clip again, but I didn't like the one my mom had so I might just go for a Fuze.

Thanks again for all the advice.

Last edited by Gerbilkit; 05-22-2010 at 11:49 PM.
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  #10  
Old 05-23-2010, 12:02 AM
dgb52 dgb52 is offline
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I have the e345 and the fuze and they are both good players

also if you are running Linux don't you need to have a player that has MSC mode?

i am not sure if the Sony will work with it
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Old 05-23-2010, 06:27 AM
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Hey, I also suggest either the Sony E 16GB [a steal in the USA for around $70USD] or the Fuze 8GB [which boasts microSDHC support and can also be had for around $70USD].

Sonically, I think the Sony E is a tad better than the Fuze [Sony E is excellent with 2 user presets] - but both sound really great. Battery life for the E is also better and the Sony E uses a standard mini USB cable [Fuze cable is proprieary].

Sony E is not truly MSC so you may need to confirm use with Ubuntu. Fuze should work just fine as MSC/MTP mode is user selectable. Also, Fuze is/will be Rockboxable - Sony cannot.

Don't think you can go wrong with either of these - I own both and love them a lot, though of course neither is perfect.

If you don't need screen for album art/videos, check out the Clip/+. It is an Editor's choice here and beloved by many folks. And Rockboxable!

And of course, if you don't already, be sure to look into some good quality headphones, the single biggest improvement one can make for any DAP player.

cheers and good luck, :-)
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Last edited by lestatar; 05-23-2010 at 03:36 PM. Reason: typo
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  #12  
Old 05-23-2010, 07:59 AM
Olley Olley is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerbilkit View Post
It took me absolute ages to scroll through songs on my sansa and I would really like to have an easier time of it... Thanks again for all the advice.
You might want to spend a little more and get a touchscreen player if quick access to songs is important. Yes, they'll do video but what they do best is give you one-touch access to any media type, then only a slide or tap or two to any song out of thousands. Sorting by category is easier. What's on the screen is easier to read. I like the Samsung P3 for efficiency and an 8gb version can be found for $115 or slightly more. You'll be amazed by how much simpler life gets when you don't have to spin a click wheel.
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  #13  
Old 05-23-2010, 03:35 PM
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Hey Olley: Great suggestion with the P3...always nice to see a few quality choices out there. In this slightly higher pricepoint, I would throw in the Samsung Q2 and R0 as candidates as well then. :-)

btw, Olley: How many DAPs do you currently own? How many have you had? I get the feeling that you are in TheDarkSide's league with the amount of players you have personally had experience with...

Throw em in a signature so we can all be jealous!
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Old 05-23-2010, 05:40 PM
Olley Olley is offline
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Thanks, Lestatar. I have quite a few, and add more every now and then. If I knew how many there actually were I wouldn't tell as my wife might find out. At this point a signature listing my collection would run down the screen quite a bit.
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Old 05-23-2010, 06:05 PM
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Olley: I hear ya...And with stuff like DAPs, perhaps the less Mrs. Olley knows about, the better...
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Old 05-23-2010, 06:53 PM
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Marvin the Martian Marvin the Martian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Olley View Post
Thanks, Lestatar. I have quite a few, and add more every now and then. If I knew how many there actually were I wouldn't tell as my wife might find out. At this point a signature listing my collection would run down the screen quite a bit.
You must have a great hiding place, or two, or three....
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  #17  
Old 05-23-2010, 08:37 PM
Gerbilkit Gerbilkit is offline
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Well right now I'm planning on the Fuze. While I really like Sony's e345 multiple reviews have mentioned features that would make lectures and audio books difficult, such as not starting where you left off, as well as very slow forwarding, and not showing how much of the track is left. If someone has an e345, could you tell me how well it works for large audio files such as lectures or audio books?

The only thing I don't like about the Fuze is the need for SD card expansion. Not a huge fan of SD cards, and the Fuze doesn't even count it as part of the internal memory.

Oh and not interested in touch controls, no way to use that in my pocket at all. If I wanted that I'd get an ipod. :P
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Old 05-23-2010, 09:09 PM
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Gerbilkit:

I do not use audiobooks/lectures...however, as to your question re: very slow forwarding/rew: This is only partially true.

When playing a file on the E345, FF or REW is indeed slow. However, if you press PAUSE first, the FF/REW the speed is much faster. The E345 display also DOES SHOW you how much track is left.

Whether this will be the case for audiobooks, I do not know.

I also have the Fuze. While the Fuze may see Main Mem and SD Card as 2 separate memories, in actual use, it is all the same to the device in terms of playback. The addition of microSDHC support is actually an extremely valuable feature IMO.

And I am right with you on touch controls - not for me... :-)

hth,
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  #19  
Old 05-24-2010, 03:06 AM
Gerbilkit Gerbilkit is offline
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Thanks everyone for the advice, I have just ordered a Sansa Fuze off of Amazon for $70, and a 8GB SD card and some accessories for another $14. My future questions will probably be more software related.

Thanks again for all the helpful advice.
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  #20  
Old 05-24-2010, 08:21 PM
Whalesha Whalesha is offline
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Congratulations! I think the Fuze is an excellent place to start and a terrific value. I have owned a Clip for a couple of years, and earlier this year got a Fuze. The normal EQ is apparently neutral, and a wonderful way of getting to know your IEM/headphone tendencies. Further, I found the Clip and Fuze were great for me because they were a good aural baseline.

Happylistening!
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