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  #1  
Old 09-10-2014, 02:48 AM
terst terst is offline
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Default Yes, another thread asking for recommendations

Hello everyone,
I find this really useful forum while I was looking for reviews of non-apple mp3 players, I started reading the threads but I ended up even more confused than before, so I thought that, since you guys know a lot about the subject and are always really nice and helpful, I might as well take advantage of it.
My Ipod Classic 32 gb is kicking the bucket, so even though he's been close to me for so long and has followed me all around the world, it's time for it to enjoy its retirement and leave the way to someone younger.
What I'm looking for: something big, but small!
Meaning, something with good capacity (I was fed up with having to delete something from my Ipod every time I bought a new CD... so expandable memory seems like the best solution), but that doesn't make me look like I have some weird STD while I carry it in my pocket. I'd love to find something small and easy to carry around. Decent battery life,
good sound quality but I'm not looking for the top-tier (I mainly use it while commuting to work, when I want to listen to music at its best I do it at home on my stereo), I'm looking to spend let's say up to 250 $, thought less is better; I don't care about the quality of the screen, if I have to click, spin or whatever... what matters is that it plays my music! A radio tuner could be a useful addition, but I can do without it.
I live in Italy, but I mostly shop online, so that shouldn't be a problem, I hope. I was getting interested in the Sandisc Sport Clip (its review brought me here) until I read about the alphabetically ordered tracks, and the separation between main memory and cards and the 4000 trakcs limits (the last 2 things in the end i could live with, but I don't want to rename some 8-9k songs to be able to listen them in the right order).
Sorry if I wrote more than I wanted to... And thanks for any help you could give me!
P.s. just one more thing... if you could throw in a suggestion for some headphones to match with it, I would be even more grateful!
Cheers
Tom
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  #2  
Old 09-10-2014, 04:11 AM
JK98 JK98 is offline
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The Sandisk Clip Sport is okay, however I prefer the Sandisk Clip Zip since the Clip Zip supports Rockbox. The only significant advantage to the Clip Sport is the longer battery life. I was curious about the Clip Sport so I bought one even though I also have the Clip Zip and Clip+. If Rockbox is developed for the Clip Sport then it will probably become my favorite player, although now my favorite player is the Clip Zip. The one thing I don't like about the Clip Zip is only around 15 hours of battery life, while the Clip Sport has around 25 hours of battery life. The latest firmware for the Clip Sport supports the track number tag, so with it tracks will play in the correct order. Having the card memory separate from the main memory and not having Rockbox is very annoying though. Now that I am used to Rockbax, I don't want to be without it. The larger screen on the Clip Sport is nice, and will be great if Rockbox becomes available for the Clip Sport. If it does become available though, it will probably be at least a year from now.
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  #3  
Old 09-10-2014, 04:29 AM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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Welcome to ABi

I'd recommend looking at other DAPs in the sandisk line. The clip sport is a serious downgrade from the Clip, Clip+ and Clip Zip when it comes to everyday usability. Those are the ones that built the reputation for the Clips that make them considered some of the best value for the money DAPs.

A Rockboxed Fuze+ is what I use most now. Without Rockbox the touchpad is almost unusable. Rockbox fixes that and adds a number of features that aren't found on other players. I would ignore that it's not marked as stable on the Rockbox pages. The only reason for that at this point is that the Rockbox project doesn't mark a port at stable except at the time of a new release. There hasn't been a release since the improvements to the Fuze+ port made it work properly in everyday use so it's still marked as unstable.

The chances of Rockbox ever being ported to the sport appear to be slim. The hardware in the sport is considered underpowered for what's required by Rockbox. Not only that the differences in hardware would require a ground up rewrite of significant part of Rockbox. There doesn't seem to be anyone qualified that's interested in getting all that done at this time.

The other alternative would be to find a smartphone with good audio output. The ability of recent smartphones to play music at a high quality level is what's been responsible for the reduction of interest in dedicated music players. If you get one that the maker paid much attention at all to the audio output a smartphone will sound every bit as good as any DAP on the market.

No idea what's available to you in Italy but in the US there's a number of off contract and used android smartphones available that work very nicely as music players. You just put them into airplane mode so it doesn't waste battery life scanning for networks and you're all set.

It's also true that not every smartphone has great audio output. gsmarena conducts testing that will give you an idea of which ones are worth getting. They don't test every phone but if you look find products that have similar hardware they should sound pretty much alike.
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  #4  
Old 09-10-2014, 02:32 PM
terst terst is offline
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Thanks a lot for your replies! I appreciate the advice with the smartphone, but I have some doubts about it, mainly about money. A smartphone with the characteristics I'd need (capacity, good sound, portability) wouldn't be quite expensive? True enough, I'd have to buy two devices instead of one, but so far I've never been interested in spending much for a smartphone (I use it for taking pics of my cats, going on fb, whatsup and few more things so I'm ok with a low-tier one). Also, what about expandable memory? The ones I have owned didn't support 32gb or even 16 gb memory cards, I don't know about others.
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  #5  
Old 09-10-2014, 05:01 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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Not sure what you want from me at this point. I suggested a smartphone as an alternative because it works well for most people. People aren't settling for their phones as a second best alternative to DAPs. They're listening to them because for the most part they sound as good as any other digital source.

As I said I don't know what's available to you. That pretty much means that if you want to deal with a smartphone as a music player you need to find one that's at a good price where you are.

Capacity and sound quality aren't an issue with the ones available to me. Any phone I see that has an expansion slot can handle a 32 GB card. Actually the one I use most often says it can only handle a 32 GB card but once I formatted a 64 GB card as FAT32 it has no problems recognizing all the files I've put on that.

I also said not every smartphone has great audio quality but I've found that the ones I've tried that have Qualcomm chips made in the last few years are at least decent. The ones with Qualcomm chips from the last year or two measure and sound as good as any DAP you're going to find.

If the smartphone idea doesn't appeal to you then the other suggestions should fill what you listed as your requirements. The battery life on the Clips is a bit short but should still get you through a daily commute easily.
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  #6  
Old 09-10-2014, 06:57 PM
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The DarkSide The DarkSide is offline
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Get a cheap windows phone that has a micro SD card slot.
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  #7  
Old 09-10-2014, 09:47 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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I'm seeing the Nokia Lumia 520 on Amazon Italy within the OP's budget. It has a newer Qualcomm S4 processor and favorable SQ reviews on gsmarena. I liked the sound when I had the chance to listen to one for a few hours. My only problem was the lack of a custom equalizer. If they can deal with the idea that smartphones can also make very good music players it's one that might work for them.
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  #8  
Old 09-10-2014, 11:08 PM
Mikerman Mikerman is offline
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A big NO as to the Clip Sport. Try a Clip+ or Clip Zip and then add a 32GB, 64GB, or even 128GB microSDXC card (for the latter two, you'll need to put the nice, separate Rockbox firmware on your player, which you might want to do also even if you use a 32GB card)-- and then still be well under your budget.
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  #9  
Old 09-10-2014, 11:11 PM
Mikerman Mikerman is offline
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Also, note the new Cowon M2 player and the new Sony A-series player--see the discussion threads on those players here as well. Both sound interesting.
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  #10  
Old 09-11-2014, 01:26 AM
korn_thoughtless6 korn_thoughtless6 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikerman View Post
A big NO as to the Clip Sport. Try a Clip+ or Clip Zip and then add a 32GB, 64GB, or even 128GB microSDXC card (for the latter two, you'll need to put the nice, separate Rockbox firmware on your player, which you might want to do also even if you use a 32GB card)-- and then still be well under your budget.
I completely agree. Get a clip+/zip, spend the extra money on a microsd card and a good set of headphones/earphones, and definitely put rockbox on the player.
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  #11  
Old 09-11-2014, 01:12 PM
terst terst is offline
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Thanks everyone for your replies, you've been very helpful and cleared my mind a lot!
Also, skip252, I'm sorry if my reply sounded impolite or disrespectful to you, it was absolutely not my intention. I just had some doubts about the solution you suggested due to my poor knowledge of the subject. The Lumia 520 looks like a good solution and really affordable, the only doubt I have left (sorry...) regards the battery life, if I'm out all day listening to music, making calls and using apps, the battery would risk not getting to the end of the day!
Thanks a lot everyone again,
I will let you know what I have decided in the end!
T.
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  #12  
Old 09-11-2014, 10:07 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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No need to apologize for anything you've said in any post here. I'm seeing that I didn't make it clear the suggestion of a smartphone was using it a separate dedicated music player not as both a phone and a music player. Even if I had you're still entitled to your express your viewpoint as to how the suggestion might work for you. You did that politely so I'm not offended in any way.

My phone is capable of very good sound and usually lasts a full day if I use it as both a phone and a music player. I don't usually make many calls so I'm probably not the typical user. I know my pattern isn't typical in that I tend to carry both a phone and a dedicated DAP. The DAP may be a Rockboxed Fuze+, a Cowon, a Clip of some type or another phone but I almost always carry a separate music source. Part of that is habit but it's also so that if I have to use my phone for an extended period I won't be stuck without music because I need to save the phone's battery for business.
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  #13  
Old 09-12-2014, 05:22 AM
Jeven Jeven is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terst View Post
Thanks everyone for your replies, you've been very helpful and cleared my mind a lot!
Also, skip252, I'm sorry if my reply sounded impolite or disrespectful to you, it was absolutely not my intention. I just had some doubts about the solution you suggested due to my poor knowledge of the subject. The Lumia 520 looks like a good solution and really affordable, the only doubt I have left (sorry...) regards the battery life, if I'm out all day listening to music, making calls and using apps, the battery would risk not getting to the end of the day!
Thanks a lot everyone again,
I will let you know what I have decided in the end!
T.
Playing audio files is probably one of the least battery-intensive functions a smartphone can perform.

Unless you constantly have the screen on, it's not really going to impact the battery life by much.
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  #14  
Old 09-12-2014, 05:51 AM
terst terst is offline
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Thanks! That's really good to know.
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