I need your help buying an mp3 player!

Discussion in 'Off Topic Chat' started by invisible, Jan 30, 2009.

  1. invisible

    invisible Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I want to buy a new mp3 player, but am not sure what brand or model to go with. Right now I have an ipod and wouldn't mind switching brands.

    What I need:
    - superior audio quality (I find the ipod's below average)
    - minimum of 40GB
    - ability to use the player's hard drive to store files (i.e., photos)
    - good battery life (from one charge to the next, but mainly before if needs replacement)
    - affordable cost to replace battery (a new battery for my 2-year old ipod would cost about $65... Really? That's 25% of the cost of a brand spankin' new mp3 player!)

    So... Zune? Creative Zen? Other?

    Thanks for the help in advance, people.
     
  2. mrodgers

    mrodgers No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Wow, you lost me right there. Are there really 40 GB mp3 players? We just bought one recently for my daughter for Christmas. We got a 4 GB and only saw 8 GB max in the stores. The 8 GB were expensive enough. I would think you need to take a loan out for 40 GB.
     
  3. invisible

    invisible Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Well, the mp3 player I'm about to get rid of can store 30GB :) Today I saw one that can store 120GB, and someone at work also mentioned one with 160GB (which is much more than I need)...
     
  4. Jaszek

    Jaszek No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Why would you need so much storage anyway? I understand storing files but you're not going to use it as an external hard drive or something
     
  5. anubis404

    anubis404 TPF Noob!

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    I used to be an MP3 player freak, so I kind of know some great MP3 players. The Cowon D2 cannot be beat in audo quality, however they don't make models that go up to 40GB. You should probably look into some of the iRivers. I have heard great things about their line of players.
     
  6. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    The quality of output on any mp3 player is largely a function of the compression/conversion method used.
    Mp3 files are of variable quality depending upon the bitrate used when creating them.
    The default conversion rate for iTunes (CD > mp3) is quite low. Go into preferences and up it to 190 or more and you will find the sound quality improves.
    If you are downloading from a music store then check the bitrate the file has been encoded at. As a rule of thumb the smaller the file size the lower the bitrate.
    The optimum setting is to use Variable bitrate and set the upper limit quite high - that way you get the best quality with a smallish file size.
    Alternatively use a different compression algorithm. Get a program that encodes using FLAC - this is lossless and high quality (but produces files of very large size). It is possible to play FLAC files through iTunes and I understand you can get programs to make iPods play them.

    I use a 120Gb iPod and encode my music with a high bitrate - it works for me and I'm a bit of a music buff.
    Oh, and if you are using the earphones that came with the iPod try buying a decent pair - you'll find that helps the quality a lot too ;)
     
  7. invisible

    invisible Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Thanks anubis. I'm always weary of brands that are not well known (moreover in these strange economic times), but someone on another forum also mentioned the Cowon D2. Not sure if it's available here in Canada, but I'll try to find it and give it a try.

    HVR, thanks for the detailed reply. All my mp3 files are 190 or above (I'm too demanding to settle for 128). The problem with using high bitrates is that you reach your ipod's capacity quicker, especially if you have plenty of files. I used the earphones that came with my ipod for a grand total of 6 minutes, then gave them away and replaced them with Sennheisers.
     
  8. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    The problem is that there are a lot of mp3 players out there but none of them have the capacity of the iPod.
    But apparently other players can handle FLAC files a lot easier. Or you could try Monkeycoder software to get APE files.
     
  9. anubis404

    anubis404 TPF Noob!

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    iRiver and Cowon are well known brands, at least in the DAP world. Hertz is right about the headphones. If you want to save some money, get some modified JVC marshmallows. The sound quality is amazing, and they go for about $20. Or, if you want some added comfort, the JVC Air Cushions have just as good of sound quality, but are about $10 more.

    Upon more research, the Cowon O2 has come out, the successor to the D2. It will most likely have top of the line audio quality (like the D2). Its largest size is 32GB, however it comes with an integrated SDHC slot, so an 8gb SD card might be in order. This would be my top recommendation of a DAP.

    Plus, it looks freakin cool:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2009
  10. invisible

    invisible Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Thanks again, anubis. Do you know the Cowon A3-60SL?
     
  11. clarinetJWD

    clarinetJWD The Naked Spammer Staff Member

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    Cowons are renowned for their quality. Great players, but lacking the entire 'ecosystem' of things like the iPod or Zune (Hardware, accessories, iTunes/Zune software, music store)...

    I have an iPod and and iPhone, but I don't use them as serious sources. The Zune on the other hand has all the same things (I would have a Zune instead right now, but I have my iTunes library just so...and that took weeks), except that it's cheaper, less iFanboyish, and has a very good DAC and amp inside. I say go for that one, or if you don't care about the software, etc. the Cowon is a great choice.
     
  12. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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