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  #1  
Old 04-28-2013, 08:50 PM
Vladimir81 Vladimir81 is offline
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Default Is the Clip Zip really that bad still or has it been fixed?

I had a Clip+ and loved it until it got stolen recently and thought the obvious replacement was the Clip Zip until I saw all the bad reviews about the dying so soon.
I havn't been able to find a lot about if this is still a real issue or have Sandisk fixed something? Or was just down to the firmware?

Or....it looks like a lot of users are not aware of how to do a proper reset with the device. Was this the cause of a lot of "dead" players?

One last question...is there any other similar player available today that is a better alternative to the Clip models now? (Small, rockboxable and reasonably cheap)

Cheers!
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  #2  
Old 04-28-2013, 09:53 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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The problem was never as bad as what you see on the Amazon reviews. The first firmwares weren't the best but usable as long as your files were tagged according to the standard sandisk recommends. For some reason the CZ is more sensitive to tagging than the Clip+ and tends to misread and/or freeze up when the tags aren't just what it expects. When that happened it seems there are a number of people that can't figure out that holding the power button will reset the player. After a quick push of the power switch doesn't reset the player they assume it's bricked.

Even if they do figure out how to reset it when they use the same files and don't clean up the tags the player freezes again. The same files will frequently work OK on other players so it's easy to come to the conclusion the player is defective.

There were also problems with .m3u playlists and AAC file support that caused quite a few of the complaints I've seen. The playlist problems were eventually ironed out in one of the firmware releases. Unfortunately AAC files longer than ~10-12 minutes still won't play.

That's definitely a firmware problem. The same files play without error using Rockbox. That means the hardware is up to it, the sandisk AAC decoder was never brought up to speed to decode longer AAC files.

I can't say from personal experience but I've read several positive posts about the Fuze+ using Rockbox. It's said the battery life is very good, the sound quality matches well with other decent quality players and using Rockbox makes the wonky touchpad usable.

skamp is a knowledgeable member. His opinion of the Fuze+ with Rockbox is here http://www.anythingbutipod.com/forum...ad.php?t=71807. I'm not in the market right now but in light of what he had to say there a Fuze+ may find it's way into my collection one day.
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  #3  
Old 04-29-2013, 12:29 AM
Vladimir81 Vladimir81 is offline
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Thanks for that skip, that's good to hear then as I like the look of the bigger screen on the Zip (sounds like it makes the battery life a lot less though?).

It's pretty bad when the guys who make Rockbox can make a better firmware/decoder than a big company like Sandisk for their own device!!???

I meant to ask that as well... a lot of negative reviews would be for original firmware but as I would only use Rockbox anyway, would people then recommend the Zip over the Clip+?

I actually have a Fuze+ too and can confirm that Rockbox made the touchpad SO much better to use. But I wan't something smaller to replace the Clip+ mainly for running.
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  #4  
Old 04-29-2013, 03:10 AM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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Rockbox developers have a different motive and fewer restrictions than those that develop the sandisk firmware. Rockbox developers work on what they want, when they want because it's what they do for fun or because it's a feature they want to have included.

For all we know the guys that worked on the AAC decoder for sandisk may have met the goal they were given and then cut loose. It could also be that making their decoder work properly may have caused some other problem and the decision was made to just leave it at "good enough". It could just be that the firmware budget was all used up and they decided not to add any more cash to finish it up. Who knows?

The rated battery life of the Clip Zip and the Clip+ is the same 15 hrs. I've seen Rockbox battery benches at anywhere from 16+ hours to ~11 hours so I'm not sure what you can expect there. The last time I did a battery bench my results were so inconsistent using the same conditions I think something isn't right with mine. Sometimes the battery life is great but most of the time my older Clip+ seems to last a lot longer.

I personally prefer the Clip+ over the Clip Zip but I'm willing to concede that's in part due to having the Clip+ for a longer time. For some reason I've never been able to exactly pin down I just don't much care for the Clip Zip, especially in the sandisk firmware. Of course as a Rockbox user the lack of features in the OF won't make a bit of difference to you.

Another part is how really crappy the screen is on the CZ. It's color but it's also obviously the cheapest one they could find that wouldn't die in the first few hours. It gives it a cheesy appearance I just don't like. I works OK for seeing what's going on but for me it doesn't add anything over the Clip+.
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  #5  
Old 04-29-2013, 08:27 AM
dave61430 dave61430 is offline
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I have the clip+ with which I have been very happy except for the fm. I picked up the zip at a good price since I use the fm mostly. As far as I can tell apart from fm they are much the same, although I prefer the screen on the plus. I tend not to be overly bothered by some of the other things that others mention and have never seen any tagging problems. All my music is tagged using mp3tag.
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  #6  
Old 05-09-2013, 09:26 PM
JK98 JK98 is offline
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I have had the Clip+ for a few years. I bought the Clip Zip a few months ago. I couldn't stand the original firmware on the Clip Zip, however with Rockbox the Clip Zip is much better than a Rockboxed Clip+. The runner theme on the Clip Zip is very readable even at the lowest screen brightness, as it is white letters on a black background. It is also supposed to be the most energy efficient theme.
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  #7  
Old 05-10-2013, 08:07 AM
mp3hunter mp3hunter is offline
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I'm looking at the clip zip as I've had my fuze for awhile and would like a back up for when it goes. I'd rather get something that still gets updates rather than hunt around for a refurb fuze. The reviews concern me though, clip+ consistently gets 5 stars while the zip can get as low as 3! From the above posts it seems like with a bit of knowledge problems can be solved but I'm unsure as to whether I would find the size of the screen and lack of color on clip+ too small after the fuze. As bad as the bad reviews are I've also read a lot where zip users claim it's better than the clip+. Opinions on just how good the sound and battery are now, since this was first posted would be very helpful.

Thanks.
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  #8  
Old 05-10-2013, 08:10 AM
mp3hunter mp3hunter is offline
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opps, didn't look at the date and assumed it was at least 6 months old. So is it safe to assume that battery life and sound are different enough that the different ratings are correct?
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  #9  
Old 05-10-2013, 08:25 AM
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Marvin the Martian Marvin the Martian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mp3hunter View Post
opps, didn't look at the date and assumed it was at least 6 months old. So is it safe to assume that battery life and sound are different enough that the different ratings are correct?
The battery life and sound are very similar. Only difference in the sound is that the fabled "pitch bug" was eliminated from the Zip, so technically the sound is slightly better, although most people won't hear the difference.
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  #10  
Old 05-10-2013, 09:04 AM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mp3hunter View Post
So is it safe to assume that battery life and sound are different enough that the different ratings are correct?
No. You missed the answers to your questions in post #2 and #4.

I also wouldn't buy either one thinking the sandisk firmware will ever be updated in any meaningful way. The issue with the AAC decoder has been known since before the last update over a year ago and nothing has been done. That makes me believe they have no intention of fixing anything more than what they have. I don't want to say it won't ever happen but I wouldn't buy one or the other based on the expectation of updates.

There have been updates to the Clip+ that weren't expected but that was to address memory hardware in newer Clip+ players. There were no improvements included in those.
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  #11  
Old 05-11-2013, 04:01 PM
mp3hunter mp3hunter is offline
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Marvin the martian - thanks.

Skip252 - I must learn to read more carefully. Interesting about updates or lack of but then why fix what ain't broke :P Thank you

Maybe I should just hang onto my fuze and start looking when it actually goes bust. Not really seeing anything that makes me want to spend cash.
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  #12  
Old 05-30-2013, 05:48 PM
RBX RBX is offline
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Honestly, the zip was a step in the wrong direction. Instead of an increase in battery life, we got a crappy OLED screen that is harder to read than the Clip+. Instead of improving the form-factor, they flush mounted the keys so it is harder to get tactile feedback. Build quality seems worse. Hopefully the next revision in the Clip series will get back to its roots...
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  #13  
Old 05-30-2013, 08:14 PM
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Hopefully the next revision in the Clip series will get back to its roots...
I wouldn't hold my breath. All indications are that SanDisk has left the mp3 player market, so there likely won't be a "next" one.
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  #14  
Old 06-02-2013, 05:48 PM
Weirdo87 Weirdo87 is offline
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Originally Posted by Tapeworm View Post
I wouldn't hold my breath. All indications are that SanDisk has left the mp3 player market, so there likely won't be a "next" one.
What exactly are these indications? Are you just talking about the fact that SanDisk didn't release any new mp3 player models in 2012?
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  #15  
Old 06-02-2013, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tapeworm View Post
I wouldn't hold my breath. All indications are that SanDisk has left the mp3 player market, so there likely won't be a "next" one.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Weirdo87 View Post
What exactly are these indications? Are you just talking about the fact that SanDisk didn't release any new mp3 player models in 2012?
I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.
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  #16  
Old 06-02-2013, 06:05 PM
Weirdo87 Weirdo87 is offline
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Originally Posted by Tapeworm View Post
I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.
Okay. Tell me, then try to find me.

But seriously, I'm going to need a new mp3 player with an SD card slot soon, since my Walkman is nearing its 16gb capacity. I was sort of expecting a new Clip model to be released around August, in line with the two-year release cadence they've been adhering to.

So if you have a good reason to doubt that a new Clip will be released this year, I'd appreciate if you'd share what it is.
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  #17  
Old 06-03-2013, 08:57 AM
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Sorry, my lips are sealed. Suffice it to say, you need to be looking at other manufacturer's products for a replacement to your 16GB Walkman.
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  #18  
Old 06-03-2013, 12:42 PM
sanka sanka is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tapeworm View Post
I wouldn't hold my breath. All indications are that SanDisk has left the mp3 player market, so there likely won't be a "next" one.

That's a real shame. I guess I'll buy another Clip+ to use when this one wears out. Nothing else compares IMO to a Sansa Clip+ with Rockbox.
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  #19  
Old 06-03-2013, 01:24 PM
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Marvin the Martian Marvin the Martian is offline
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That's a real shame. I guess I'll buy another Clip+ to use when this one wears out. Nothing else compares IMO to a Sansa Clip+ with Rockbox.
A Clip Zip with Rockbox does....
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  #20  
Old 07-31-2013, 11:22 AM
danx55 danx55 is offline
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hi guys,

im loving all these clip zip threads im finding - so from reading here and other places, it seems that i really need to rock box my CZ straight away? i was thinking of trying it out with stock os - but everything seems to be pointing to 'get it RB'd immediately'

cheers
dan
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