Any MP3 player experts out there

Jules

Formerly known as "nachoman"
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brighton by the sea
Any of your folks studied the world of MP3 players? I'm looking to get one for in-car entertainment with a reasonably hefty capacity. Have you got any thuoghts about ther relative merits of Ipods vs Zen Creatives vs what ever else is available out there. I suppose the issues are gonig to be reliability, value for bucks, ability to power it via the cigarette lighter socket in my wagon, interface with a PC, ability to use it as a memory stick for moving non-music files(?).....
Any thoughts anyone?
 

Moz

Senior Member
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841
Location
North of Liskeard, Cornwall,UK
Any of your folks studied the world of MP3 players? I'm looking to get one for in-car entertainment with a reasonably hefty capacity. Have you got any thuoghts about ther relative merits of Ipods vs Zen Creatives vs what ever else is available out there. I suppose the issues are gonig to be reliability, value for bucks, ability to power it via the cigarette lighter socket in my wagon, interface with a PC, ability to use it as a memory stick for moving non-music files(?).....
Any thoughts anyone?
Sansa Clip. Mine is 8Gb and cost under forty quid. I bought it to replace a Zen Stone because that one kept switching itself on (no 'lock' switch). Good, clear display, and is charged by a USB adapter and so will probably use the same adapter as a satnav for charging in the car. Battery life is very good. Can store data files and also has an FM radio, voice recording and recording from radio (I think, but I've never used that feature). Needs no special software, just copy your files as if it were another external drive. Just fine.

Cheers

Martin
 

AlanB

Member
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170
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Vientiane, Laos
I do like the iPod. I used to have a zen (an old one - pre-ipod) i thought it was fantastic at the time, but like apple always do, they steal someone else's idea and make it much better.
The iPod PC interface "iTunes" is an excellent way to organise your library and has direct access to iTunes store for buying music, including cover art and a database that knows what CD you put in to rip and automatically includes the details of songs and albums that you convert to digital (MP3). For someone with your deep appreciation of music i would suggest always ripping at 320kbps, it uses more space on the drive but gives you the confidence that all your much loved CDs are ripped at the highest quality. Mine is 160GB (which is huge) and i think they may be doing a 200GB version now (not sure). I suggest getting the bigger the better, it soon gets filled, especially if you have quite a large CD collection.

The only thing for me is that while iTunes organises your albums very well, this doesn't translate that well to the iPod. I can't for example get my iPod to show my music organised by album artist, which i really like because essentially that means your music is organised as you would find it in HMV or Tower. It is the way we are used to browsing for music and is how i have my CD collection organised. This is a bug bare for many people on the forums and i really hope iPod change this soon.

All of the equipment is easily available for using the iPod in-car. I like it 'cause i can whip it out, use it as a walkman and the plug it in to auxiliary on my stereo and have my entire CD collection and digital collection available at home.

IPod also stores anything you want just like any other hard drive and you can also watch you favourite clips from YouTube or anything else you have converted to MP4 on the iPod screen. I actually watch TV shows and documentaries when i am in the field.

Now here is one the coolest features. You subscribe to PodCasts, there are loads to choose from, Sax master classes, sax magazine programmes, genre specific radio shows etc, etc. Once subscribed, iTunes will automatically download the latest show, synchronize with your iPod. Then you can listen to it on the way to work. e.g. SaxTips is a great show for all levels with good music playing tips, gigging and professional tips, interviews,equipment care and so on.

I hope this is of some help.
Al
 

jonf

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Betelgeuse
I've got a Sansa as well. Part of the reasopn for buying it was that it was cheap, partly I don't like all the Apple marketing twaddle, and the premium price that comes with it. Good, basic, simple, reliable and cheap. I'm listening to it right now. I use Windows whatever-it's-called to rip music from CDs, and organise music files just like any other PC file. The Sansa just connects to my PC like any other device. Dead easy.

Jon
 

Semiquaver

Member
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102
Location
Hertfordshire, England
I have no idea about Zen but would recommend you have a good look at ipod/iphone.

I agree with everyhting alanB ha already said but other features that are good for musician are some of the apps that are available. On my iphone I have a real book, a scale/chord list which includes all the alternatives, even a little piano for trying out riffs etc.

I also like itunes for buying a single track that i want rather than the whole album. This is when i want to learn a tune and wish to hear how the pro's play it. Itunes also has an excellent search facility.

AlanB......to sort your tunes into album/artist just click on the title at the top of the list. Clicking album will sort them into alphabetical order. You can do the same with the artists, genre anything.

Jeff
 

dooce

Well-Known Member
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1,415
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Daventry
Sony Walkman. Nice simple, reliable bit of kit, quite classy looking in a discreet sort of way, organises all your stuff by year, artist, album, genre, whatever, nice clear screen if you want photos, FM radio included, lock to prevent it turning on accidentally, simple interface to Windows Mediaplayer - only downside is that you have to charge it via the computer connection and it can take ages, although I think there are mains adaptor thingies avaiable.
 

AlanB

Member
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170
Location
Vientiane, Laos
AlanB......to sort your tunes into album/artist just click on the title at the top of the list. Clicking album will sort them into alphabetical order. You can do the same with the artists, genre anything.

Jeff
Jeff - That's right for iTunes. It is just that i can not get the same organisation of my albums by Album artist in iPod. It's a real poo! Or have you found a way to do this on the iPod. Al
 
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Jules

Jules

Formerly known as "nachoman"
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Location
brighton by the sea
for the Sensa people out there- what's the score with the ability to expand their memory with cards. It's hinted at on a couple of websites but i can't find any firm info (also- any ideas if they can be run off a car ciggy lighter socket?)
 
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jonf

Well-Known Member
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Betelgeuse
Mine will take a micro SD card to expand capacity. They're a bit small and fiddly, though. Mine won't run off a fag lighter socket, but as it's solid state it uses so little power it might not be an issue. Just charge it up every few days off a USB port.

Jon
 

JasonC

Member
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218
Location
Swadlincote, Derbyshire
Mine will take a micro SD card to expand capacity. They're a bit small and fiddly, though. Mine won't run off a fag lighter socket, but as it's solid state it uses so little power it might not be an issue. Just charge it up every few days off a USB port.

Jon
If it charges from USB you can just get a ciggy lighter USB charger, which are now ten a penny because virtually everything charges up by USB nowadays!

Regarding MP3 players, iPod have obviously got the biggest name at the moment but iTunes leaves a lot to be desired, which unfortunately is needed to actually use the iPod regarding transferring music. I personally would recommend any player that just plugs into your PC so you can just drag and drop files from your PC over to the player and the songs then just appear on the player. The benefits of this are that you can store all your MP3s on your PC in an organised order, rather than relying on a program to do it for you like iTunes. The standard Windows Media player will rip CD's for you no problem, and it also gets the cover art for you (if available, not all covers are, even on iTunes).

My current music setup consists of a Playstation 3 and my phone. All I do is either rip a CD to the PS3 (at 320kpbs) or transfer MP3s to it from my PC, all the cover art and track names are added when you rip the CD. Once its ripped to the PS3 I just plug my phone into it via USB and copy the tracks I want to my phone. My phone then recognises all of the tracks (inc. cover art) so they are then playable in my phone. My phone then has the option to have headphones plugged into it, or I can use Bluetooth to connect to wireless headphones or even an adaptor to listen to it through your car stereo.

The advantages I find using my phone instead of a dedicated MP3 player is that I only have one thing to carry around and there is only one thing to charge!
You can also go one step further using your phone (if it supports it) and that is that I can access all of my MP3s via the internet via Google Docs, which means I can then download any music I own from anywhere :)
 

Nick Wyver

noisy
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Minster On Sea
Apart from ipods, I don't think there are any high capacity (>100gb) mp3 players. All the high capacity ones are marketed as media players and are mainly aimed at playing films and stuff. They will all do mp3s but because their main thing is to show pics they tend to be somewhat bigger. Archos do a number of different ones. I'm still using the 40gb Zen that I got about 5 years ago but I don't think they do anything like this any more.

Well, having just checked, they do a 64gb Zen X-Fi2. Which might do the job if that's big enough. If they did a 200gb one I'd probably think about getting one myself.

I've always run mine from the internal rechargeable battery so I've never needed to try power it externally. I imagine it might be a problem if I was doing a non-stop drive from here (Kent) to Aberdeen.
 
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