"Took Long Enough!"4.5 starson by plecky
Pros: 18 hour plus battery life, 6 GB HD, Custom Engraving, Nice Backlight, Extras (Games and Such), and Accesories/Options, Metallic and Alluminum (sp.?) casing, Thin.
Cons: No FM Tuner, No Voice Recorded (or accessory add on's for them), no removeable battery, no "mesmorizing" blue glow, no true baby blue color like old mini, no color screen (yet?), Tall.
Summary: To tell you the truth, up until the 2nd-gen mini was announced, I was as close as one can possibly be to purchasing the light blue 5 gig zen micro for myself. Checked out some reliable rumor sites and heard about the possible 5/6 gig ipod mini photo. Waited one more week to see if any of them ended up being true and some of it did pan out. Then they finally came out on Feb. 23rd with some of the rumors being true and some not (no color screen *tear*). All in all, there are a few reasons I chose this iPod Mini over the Zen Micro. First, iPod wins the battery life contest with a impressive 18 hours (some tests I've read and now that I own am able to back up that if you just let your music play without backlight and all those battery draining extras, you can get in the ballpark of 25 hours. Although the Zen Micro only has 12-hours of battery life although the option of a removable battery does even out the battle field. Two zen micro batteries and you'll be in about the same ballpark, although it is just one more thing to carry around i guess. Secondly, at the time the 6 gigs was 1 bigger than the zen micro's 5 gigs so that was huge (i'd rather have that then the voice recorder of FM tuner since i am buying a mp3 player and all). Although recently Creative has released news about their new 6 gig Zen Micro's (althoug lack of light blue color would turn me off because I'm a fan of that color). So iPod no longer has that going for it. So far there pretty even, but here's the things is sacrificed and things i gained going iPod. Sacrificed FM Tuner and Voice Recorder. Gained more accessories offered (such as mp3-player cases, car adapters, power adapters of all sorts, arm band, dozens of FM tuners including the matching sized iTrip, and coming soon the Belkin SmartDeck Tape allowing a tapedeck to control your iPod!). Although the accesories made and sold by apple are a fortune to buy, you can find 3rd party types for cheaper if you choose, the accessories possibilities are only second to that of the full sized ipod. Creative on the other hand has been slacking on releasing micro accesories unfortunately (I really wish they hadn't). And 3rd party accesories for the micro are the same that pretty much work for every mp3 player out there. Lastly, I also gained the games on the iPod. To my knowledge and experience I do not know of any games on the Zen Micro. This may seem extremly trivial, but being a gamer it is something i enjoy having even if it's just 4-games and Parachutes suck, the other ones are fairly entertaining and music quiz is fun for my friends to play. I won't get into the whole click wheel vs. vert-touch-pad and interface battles because i think both just take getting use to and get the job done. In a closing note, just to defend my purchase and to lessen any regrets of it now that the 6-gig zen micro with still posessing that beautiful blue glow around the thing *sigh* has been offered, I am glad to have the custom engraving on the back of my ipod, I like the backlight on the mini more than that on the micro, and concluding this - i like the cosmetic features ranging from the aluminium case rather then a hard-plastic one and since the 6-gig micro doesn't come in light blue, I am glad to have this vibrant metallic blue with matching click wheel icons. Overall, 6 gig ipod and 6 gig micro probably go hand in hand with die hards on both sides, I'd take either but the iPod came out first, I took it, I love it. Maybe next time it'll be the zen micro around then, maybe the ipod, maybe something completely different. But for the moment I am extremly satisfied and content, but i will always be excited to see what's to come around the corner and anxious the get the next wave of mp3 players with larger hard drives, color screens, better battery lives, and who knows what else! Hope that helps someone... Pleasant Shopping