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  #1  
Old 02-28-2013, 09:16 AM
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skamp skamp is offline
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Smile I love my Rockboxed Fuze+

The Fuze+ gets a lot of bad rap around here, but I took a gamble and pulled the trigger on a refurbished 16 GB Fuze+ on eBay, for just €40. I didn't even bother with the original firmware, I immediately installed the latest Rockbox build.

I understand why some people would hate the touchpad, but it's not nearly as bad as what I've read on this board. With Rockbox at least, it's responsive, and even convenient at times; I love that the bottom left and right corners act as page up / down buttons, allowing for fast scrolling when browsing through a large collection. Yes, you have to look at the DAP in order to interact with it, but the same goes for all touchscreen DAPs, so I don't really get what the big deal is.

I find the portrait mode screen to be very convenient and most appropriate on a DAP: cover art can be displayed full screen, with metadata beneath it. I made myself a custom theme (grayfog) that looks like this:


The portrait orientation of the screen also makes it possible to display a lot more lines than with other DAPs, like the iPod Classic (and obviously, the Clip+). My Fuze+ can display about 22 lines, with the current font that I use (14-Nimbus).

I've also read complaints that the Fuze+ is too big: that's largely exagerated as well (no pun intended). Obviously it is larger than the Clip+, but it's still smaller than the iPod Classic, and I've never heard any complaints that the iPod is too big.

Sound quality-wise, I think it sounds just as good as my Clip+ and my iPod Classic, with one caveat: I hear a faint hiss with my Shure SE425 IEMs (not with my Denon headphones), but I don't hear it when music is playing. It's not as annoying as my Clip's "CPU noise" (as reported on the Rockbox website), which I hear between track changes. The iPod Classic wins there, as it is completely silent in all circumstances (even with my Shures).

I've run RMAA on it, and it measures pretty well (loaded, unloaded). Its output impedance is just 0.9Ω, very decent.

All in all, I think it's a sexy and convenient DAP that mostly suits my needs and tastes. I don't think it's fair to systematically dismiss it; prospecting customers just need to be well informed about it.

Last edited by skamp; 11-08-2014 at 10:22 AM. Reason: updated URLs
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  #2  
Old 02-28-2013, 10:04 AM
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Marvin the Martian Marvin the Martian is offline
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It is a nice looking piece of hardware, and the sound is very good. Rockbox is the only reason the player is even remotely usable, and they have done a great job improving it. Even in the earlier RB builds, I still wanted to smash the one I had, but before I traded mine away, it was certainly a lot more usable.
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  #3  
Old 02-28-2013, 03:42 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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Are those RMAA results using Rockbox or the OF ? Either way they seem to say it should be a decent sounding player.

I don't think I've heard anyone reasonable complain about the sound quality. The complaints have always centered around the UI and poorly responding touchpad. Rockbox would fix that for me but I don't think it would for most people.
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Old 02-28-2013, 11:23 PM
mamamia88 mamamia88 is online now
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Damn I miss mine now. Damnit why'd I take it apart again? Oh yeah the headphone jack was kinda lose and I wanted to see if I could make it tighter so I tried to squeeze it with needle nose pliers. Very bad idea. I still hope they come out with a successor with real buttons though. Maybe one where the screen doesn't scratch as easy and with a long battery life. I love my e-series but I really want a successor to the fuze.
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  #5  
Old 03-01-2013, 02:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skip252 View Post
Are those RMAA results using Rockbox or the OF ?
Rockbox. I didn't use the OF at all.
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  #6  
Old 03-02-2013, 12:49 PM
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The more I think about it, the more I think that the Fuze+ is one of those devices that are victims of unjustified and / or exagerated bad reputation. I thought it was suspicious. It seems like everyone is telling everyone else to stay away from it like the plague, here and on Head-Fi.

Yes, the touchpad is not for everyone, but touchscreen DAPs don't get such a bad rep. But now if I start recommending it to some people, I'll pass for a lunatic…

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Old 03-02-2013, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skamp View Post
The more I think about it, the more I think that the Fuze+ is one of those devices that are victims of unjustified and / or exagerated bad reputation. I thought it was suspicious. It seems like everyone is telling everyone else to stay away from it like the plague, here and on Head-Fi.

Yes, the touchpad is not for everyone, but touchscreen DAPs don't get such a bad rep. But now if I start recommending it to some people, I'll pass for a lunatic…

Use it for a couple of days with the Sansa firmware, no Rockbox, and you may get a better understanding of why so many people hated it.
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  #8  
Old 03-02-2013, 01:07 PM
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OK, yes, the OF is horribly laggy and unresponsive
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  #9  
Old 03-02-2013, 07:34 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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I wouldn't consider recommending a Rockboxed Fuze+ a lunatic suggestion. I'd question your judgement if the recommendation was for one without Rockbox though. As I've said in the past life's too short to be dealing with a device that doesn't work as expected.

I won't say my past experience has soured me so that I would never buy one again. I might get another if I see a refurb at a price that's too good to miss. Having a working Rockbox port puts the Fuze+ into the "maybe" category for me. Without Rockbox that would be "no way in hell".
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  #10  
Old 03-03-2013, 03:22 PM
mamamia88 mamamia88 is online now
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$30 brand new right now on amazon tempting. http://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-Sansa-...keywords=sansa
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  #11  
Old 03-03-2013, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamamia88 View Post
$30 brand new right now on amazon tempting. http://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-Sansa-...keywords=sansa
Added to the Deals thread. http://www.anythingbutipod.com/forum...d.php?p=632500

I've been avoiding getting one as I'm butt deep in DAPs now. This price may make me rethink that. Hmmm...
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  #12  
Old 03-03-2013, 04:28 PM
mamamia88 mamamia88 is online now
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Yeah me too if I didn't already have a zip, fuze v2, and walkman e475. If I bought one I'm afraid it would end up like the c200 i found while cleaning the other day
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  #13  
Old 03-04-2013, 12:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamamia88 View Post
$30 brand new right now on amazon tempting. http://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-Sansa-...keywords=sansa
This is for an 8GB version, and it's cheaper than the 4GB ($45.87).

But a 16GB model? 88 bucks? Holy Moly!
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  #14  
Old 03-09-2013, 03:23 AM
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I ran a battery benchmark on my Rockboxed Fuze+. I got 32 hours and 45 minutes of continuous playback, with Musepack files, 10 band EQ enabled, and my Shure SE425's attached. Pretty much the same as my iPod Classic, when it was Rockboxed as well.
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Old 03-09-2013, 03:53 AM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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Nice, that's quite a bit better than the OF rated 24 hours.

Why Musepack? I thought you usually use LossyFlac? I know Musepack should decode easily but wouldn't using FLAC work better to give others an idea of what they might expect?
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Old 03-09-2013, 04:03 AM
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LossyFLAC is for my iPod Classic, because it has twice as much storage as I need to fit my entire collection.

Musepack --insane is more appropriate for my Fuze+ with 16 + 32 GB, with enough room to let my collection grow.
I use Musepack because it decodes faster, and --insane because I like overkill.

Last edited by skamp; 03-09-2013 at 04:18 AM.
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  #17  
Old 03-22-2013, 09:08 AM
humersimpson humersimpson is offline
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Thanks for this information, Skamp. I will have to try mine with RB. My main problem with the touchpad (though I am using the original firmware) is that I use my Fuze+ for playing music through my car stereo, and when I try to change albums or go to a different artist, I nearly keep running off the road because of how bad the touchpad is and I have to literally concentrate on doing that instead of paying attention to the road. My old Fuze with the scroll wheel was SO much easier to use. I press the damn thing straight in the middle and it thinks I touched it to skip to the next song, or skip to the previous song, etc. PITA. I have not tried RB on my + because I figured even the best firmware cannot overcome bad hardware (I assumed the touchpad issues are a hardware problem).

I was hoping that Sansdisk would come out with a new Fuze in time for this past Christmas season that combined the good of the + (outside of the touchpad, I mostly like the OS of the + over the Fuze OS) with the easy to use controls of the original Fuze, but that has not come to pass, yet, and may never.
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Old 03-30-2013, 08:15 PM
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This confirms what i thought, if i hadn't fallen in love with the C2 (and now by the looks of it i9+) I would be all over the Fuze+ rockboxed.
I wasn't overly impressed with the clip zip, its screen quality was so bad it was 'why bother', a larger clip+ screen would have sufficed. The battery life of all the clip players is too little for my liking.
My favourite sansa product was the Fuze V2, I would have enjoyed a nicer screen on that device. The fuze+ has a nicer screen but compromises with controls, possibly less of an issue once rockboxed.
The best thing about the fuze+ is its price, its not a big gamble to see if rb&fuze+ is workable.
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Old 04-29-2013, 12:14 PM
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Oops, this is coming kinda late, but I just realized that I completely forgot to mention one small gripe: the display is kinda funky. First, you need to tilt it forward a bit in order to get some contrast (which is pretty poor to begin with). Second, sometimes the screen flickers, but I don't know if that's because I bought a refurb (which I got really cheap, at almost 1/3rd the price). My Clip+ (also a refurb that I got on the cheap) also has display issues.

The display on my iPod Classic is much better (in terms of quality). But the portrait orientation of the display on the Fuze+ trumps to poorer quality (for me), so I guess that's why I forgot to mention it. I'm curious to know if brand new Fuze+'s suffer from those issues.
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  #20  
Old 04-29-2013, 01:52 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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What you're seeing is pretty much what I saw with the new ones I've had. The screen is better than the one on the original Fuze but still nothing exceptional. The viewing angles aren't great but for a relatively cheap player I don't think they're that bad. Good enough to see how to get a song started but not what I'd use to watch anything more than a 'toon or a trailer.

I don't remember any flickering on the ones I bought new. The times I've used the refurb a family member has I didn't notice any on theirs either. No idea if that's me not noticing or it's not happening. I'll take a look when I can get my hands on it again and let you know what I see.
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