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Another "What mp3 player should I buy" thread?

Old 09-04-05, 06:57 AM
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Another "What mp3 player should I buy" thread?

I did some searches for Ipods, Rios, etc. and got some good stuff. Some of it was outdated and some of it didn't really apply to me.

So I thought I'd ask for some advice.

What type of mp3 player would you guys buy if these were your main priorities, in no particular order:

1) 20 gb or more space
2) Ease of use (both interface-wise and software-wise)
3) Ability to jog with it
4) Ability to connect to car stereo and have good sound quality

I don't really care for a ton of features. Just something that's durable, portable, and efficient.

Thanks for the help guys.
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Old 09-04-05, 07:52 AM
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The ability to jog with it kills your options.

20GB or more means a hard drive based player, and those are all risky to jog with as they can get messed up from all the motion as they have moving parts.

My reccomendation is to forget the overpriced i-Pods exist. Buy a nice 20GB or larger player from Creative or Dell, and then with the money you saved over the iPod, buy a flash-based player to use when running.

I'm very happy with my combination of a 15GB Dell DJ and a 512MB Creative Muvo for working out.
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Old 09-04-05, 09:33 AM
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I like the iPod's, but mainly because I use the smart playlists extensively. No other player has that capability to the extent that iPod's do. I also like the MPEG 4 AAC format, as it sounds better than most any other one. But the initial reason I bought it was that, at the time, it was the only unit that had docking stations. I mounted a dock in my car and keep one by the computer and stereo. Very handy.

Ease of use: iPod is still the favorite.

Sound quality: For the most part, if you're going to stick to MP3, any player will play it and sound fine. Avoid Sony at all costs, however.

Car stereo connectivity: iPod is the clear winner here, as there are piles and piles of various products to connect an iPod to a vehicle and get more than just "sound" out of it. Stuff to let you use your steering wheel controls, stuff to let the iPod display it's song info on the stereo itself, etc. But if all you care about is sound, realistically, any player will work. All you need is to add an AUX jack to your car stereo for excellent sound.

Cost: iPod is a big loser here. They're cheaper than they used to be, but still more expensive than anything else. You pay extra for the small size and for the style.

Jogging: Josh is right, get a separate flash based player for jogging. Hard drives + jogging = bad idea.
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Old 09-04-05, 09:39 AM
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Hell, if you want, you can stick to one company for both flash and HDD based tunes.

Apple: 512mb Ipod Shuffle for working out and higher capacity HDD drive for whatever else.

Creative: Muvo (have 2 of these and I really like them) flash player and then Creative Zen for HDD.

IRiver: etc ...

... or mix and match.

But definitely stay away from HDD (moving parts) mated with exercise unless you don't mind potentially shortening it's lifespan prematurely.
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Old 09-04-05, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Souljahh
I did some searches for Ipods, Rios, etc. and got some good stuff. Some of it was outdated and some of it didn't really apply to me.

So I thought I'd ask for some advice.

What type of mp3 player would you guys buy if these were your main priorities, in no particular order:

1) 20 gb or more space
2) Ease of use (both interface-wise and software-wise)
3) Ability to jog with it
4) Ability to connect to car stereo and have good sound quality

I don't really care for a ton of features. Just something that's durable, portable, and efficient.

Thanks for the help guys.
1) I would go either iPod or Zen Touch. iPod is more expensive at the 20GB level, but has a really nice color screen.
2) iPod has by far the easiest learning curve and the best PC software available in iTunes. The Creative players are usable as well and once you get them down they are easy to use, but the learning curve is a bit more as things are not as intuitive as it should be and nothing Creative or anyone else has come up with matches the scroll wheel and menu system of the iPods. The built in Creative software is terrible, but you can use it with Windows Media Player, Real Player, Notmad Explorer or pretty much anything you want instead.
3) Ugh, neither. You should not jog with any HDD player. Get a Muvo or Shuffle instead for jogging. I prefer the Muvo because I like having a screen.
4) I'm a big believer in the fact the Zen's sound better than the competition especially Sony. However, the difference in sound quality between the iPods and Zens is pretty marginal. Its doubtful you would notice on most tracks. However, if you use the EQ settings the Zen does a much better job than the iPod. For regular unaltered sound your speakers and encoding rate will make a bigger difference than the hardware of the Zen and iPod.

To touch on connecting to a stereo, the iPod has a lot of options though they are fairly expensive. If you have an aux jack on your stereo any MP3 player will do. Using a FM modulator sucks though. Avoid that option.

If Jogging is important I would go with a 1GB Muvo.

If you are thinking about getting a jukebox and a flash player and the lack of screen is not an issue I would get the 20GB iPod and the 512MB Shuffle. They will work well together through iTunes.
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Old 09-04-05, 02:20 PM
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I'm looking for an MP3 Player so that I can listen to audiobooks while jogging. Here's what I need (in order):

1 - Can jog with it.
2 - Plays MP3 tracks in order.
3 - at least 500MB (but I don't need over 1GB).
4 - Easy to use.
5 - Inexpensive.

I don't own an MP3 player, so I'm not too sure what to look for.

If anyone has some recommendations, I'd really appreciate it. Thanks.
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Old 09-04-05, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by TheBigDave
I'm looking for an MP3 Player so that I can listen to audiobooks while jogging. Here's what I need (in order):

1 - Can jog with it.
2 - Plays MP3 tracks in order.
3 - at least 500MB (but I don't need over 1GB).
4 - Easy to use.
5 - Inexpensive.

I don't own an MP3 player, so I'm not too sure what to look for.

If anyone has some recommendations, I'd really appreciate it. Thanks.
The 512MB Muvo TX or 512 MB Zen Nano (they renamed the Muvo Micro so either name is the same device) sounds like what you are looking for. Both are audible.com compatible if that is where you are getting your audiobooks.

However, the 512MB iPod Shuffle might also fit the bill as it does play back MP3s in order if you want it to and its also Audible.com compatible through iTunes.

The Creative devices have FM playback and a screen if those things are important. The iPod has a built in rechargable battery and the Creative devices run on AAA batteries.
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Old 09-04-05, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by darkside
The 512MB Muvo TX or 512 MB Zen Nano (they renamed the Muvo Micro so either name is the same device) sounds like what you are looking for. Both are audible.com compatible if that is where you are getting your audiobooks.

However, the 512MB iPod Shuffle might also fit the bill as it does play back MP3s in order if you want it to and its also Audible.com compatible through iTunes.

The Creative devices have FM playback and a screen if those things are important. The iPod has a built in rechargable battery and the Creative devices run on AAA batteries.
Thanks for the info. I'll look at those players.

I get audiobooks from the local library. I've been listening to cassettes on a walkman for years, but the library is switching to CDs. Since you can't jog with a CD player, I was just going to convert them to MP3s. I'll check out audible.com

I thought that the iPod Shuffle only played random tracks. Since it plays tracks in order, I might go with that one.

Thanks again.
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Old 09-04-05, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by TheBigDave
I get audiobooks from the local library. I've been listening to cassettes on a walkman for years, but the library is switching to CDs. Since you can't jog with a CD player, I was just going to convert them to MP3s. I'll check out audible.com
You should check out to see if your library is hooked into an MP3 borrowing system. My library just got into www.netlibrary.com and it's excellent. If they don't, recommend it to them. It's a lot cheaper than buying CDs for the library.

Oh, and audible is great. If you sign up, they'll even give you an MP3 player to get started.

edit: just checked and they're offering the 512 Shuffle if you sign on for 6 months. That's a great deal!
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Old 09-04-05, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Josh Hinkle
My reccomendation is to forget the overpriced i-Pods exist.
And my recommendation is to be aware some people have a hard-on against iPods that skews their advice.

Amazon has the 20 GB iPod right now for $240, which is only a few dollars more than a Zen touch. Both are excellent players, but I ended up liking the software and fit-and-finish of the iPod over the Creative.

There's a reason iPod had 80 percent of the portable music player market.
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Old 09-04-05, 07:45 PM
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Thanks for all the help guys.

I ended up going with a 30 gb Ipod Photo. Found one for 300 flat.
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Old 09-04-05, 09:36 PM
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Where'd you get that from, Soul?

I'm glad I read this thread, though, since I'm probably getting an iPod within the next week and it's mainly for the gym. I was aiming to get a 20GB or bigger iPod, so I was wondering if using it while on something like the ellipitical would be damaging to it, as well. Obviously you're moving, but it's more of a smooth motion, instead of pounding motion that running/jogging creates.
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Old 09-04-05, 09:54 PM
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Most eliptical machines have a little spot on the dash where you could set an mp3 player and it won't move at all.
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Old 09-05-05, 12:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Al Padrino
Where'd you get that from, Soul?

I'm glad I read this thread, though, since I'm probably getting an iPod within the next week and it's mainly for the gym. I was aiming to get a 20GB or bigger iPod, so I was wondering if using it while on something like the ellipitical would be damaging to it, as well. Obviously you're moving, but it's more of a smooth motion, instead of pounding motion that running/jogging creates.
Got it from buy.com Al. It's 309 with free shipping. I searched on google for "buy.com coupons" and found a 10 dollar off 175 for new customers coupon. So got it for 299.

I like the digital picture storage capability.
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Old 09-05-05, 01:41 AM
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Good choice, but like everyone else, I'd think twice about running with it. If you do, try to find a place on your body that minimizes the movement. I would think lower back would be the best, with best being relative.
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Old 09-05-05, 03:02 AM
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Yeah, decided I just won't run with it.
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