Pros Ease of use, Large screen, Good menus and battery life
Cons Requires use of hideous software
Summary The player is great, if navigating the software doesn't kill you. Here's some tips.
First the player. 2GB is a great amount of space. I have 11GB of music, but all my favorites amount to 1.2GB. That's 242 songs, 9 hours of music! The buttons are easy to use and intuitive. The menu system is also easy to use and intuitive and the large screen makes it easy to navigate. Unfortunately the belt clip costs extra, but is worth it for the convenience of portability without an annoying armband. The battery life is great, also.
The only flaw I've found in this player is that it's not a flash drive that can be easily carried around and attached to any computer to transfer files.
Now for the software. You are required to use Windows Media Player 10 (WMP) if you want to organize your files. This software is designed to bring intelligent, technology oriented people to their knees begging for mercy. If you require no organization of your files, don't even bother with the software, simply drag and drop your music into the "Music" folder in the SanDisk directory.
I however like to have separate files of music on the player -- for example, one for music files and one for audio book files. If you create separate folders for these files in the directory, you will not find them separated on the player. Instead, you must create "playlists" using WMP and "sync" them to your player. If you live long enough to see that accomplished, all you have to do with your player is press the Menu button, select Play Music, scroll to Playlists and select it, and there are your folders!
Here's how to not waste hours of your valuable lifetime figuring out how to make WMP do this for you: do the following in this order. BEFORE doing anything else with the software, Select the Library tab. Go to File at the top of the window (if it's not there, right click at the top of the window and select Show Menu Bar), select Add to Library and By Searching Computer. Select the folder containing your music files and search. This will take a long time and will end with no apparent result.
Click close and go to the menu in the left frame of the window. Click All Music. WMP will have sorted your music into all sorts of possibly useful combinations. If you want to see the list of ALL your songs, go to rated songs and select unrated -- since they all start unrated. Now all your songs will open in the Library frame (center frame) and you can sort them by clicking the columns. You can choose the colums by clicking Library Options, Chose Columns. Be careful what you do with songs in the Library -- deleting them here can delete them from your hard drive!
Now you can create a playlist. Go to the right side of the window, to the blue strip that looks like a border but is actually a separate frame. Click the menu at top, choose New List, then Playlist. Drag songs from the Library frame to the Playlist frame. Save frequently using the menu above the right frame (it changes names, so don't get thrown off by that).
Once you've created your playlist, it will show up in the left frame of the window under My Playlists. If you open a playlist here, it opens in the Library frame. Any changes you make in the Library are permanent, regardless of whether you save or not.
Now plug in your player, and click the Sync tab. Click Setup Sync and select the folders (ie, playlists) you want to put on your player. Use the drop down menu to add only the playlists you have selected (there are a bunch of default playlists the WMP makes up, in addition to the useful ones you have made.) Select OK and start the Sync.
At this point WMP freezes on me and I have to end the unresponsive program using Task Manager. I then reopen the program and resume the Sync, usually successfully. The Sync takes a long time. If you change your playlists and you want to "sync" those changes to your player, you do that via this method. You must resync ALL playlists you want to stay on your player, even those you have not changed, or they will be removed from you player.
Good luck. I hope these instructions (strangely not included with the player or WMP) will help you love your fabulous player and not hate it because it's software is so not user friendly!
Pros FM Tuner is crisp,clear in buildings. Lots of options. Comes with armband, case and helpful walkthrough disc. Best deal in MP3
Cons 1" thick is big compared to others. Figuring out playlist loading takes patience. Wife thought headphones were bulky but I have big ears.
Summary This player is the best deal going right now. The provided disc has a good walkthough for using the player with Windows Media Player if you're not that tech-savvy (my Father-In-Law had minimal problems). Felt a little flimsy at first but now it feels comfortable and has withstood my Father-In-Laws big-fingered, button mashing like a champ. I highly recommend to anyone looking for a great deal on a solid player.
Pros Fantastic for music and especially subscription (napster-to-go).
Cons OFFICIALLY DOES NOT SUPPORT MP3/WMA AUDIOBOOKS!
Summary I love this little player. However, after some difficulty with fast-forwarding through mp3 podcasts and audiobooks (ffwd for about 2 min, then moves to next track), I was told by support that audiobooks are not supported.
A quote from the sandisk webpage:
"Support for MP3, WMA, and DRM WMA and Audible file formats. Does NOT support audio books in WMA and MP3."
If you listen to audiobooks or podcasts, I would suggest a different player. However, if you are only listening to music, this is a great little player.
Pros Very nice and light with a solidly built feel, above average sound quality from earbuds, packed to the gills with features, great price value
Cons While it feels solid, it looks cheap. Earbuds are very big and pretty uncomfortable, unusually large compared to the Nano, screen could use better contrast adjustment
Summary I picked up this player as a replacement for a Sandisk e130 that konked out on me about 3 weeks after I got it, and I am very satisfied. I paid $130 for an MP3/WMA player that supports playlists, subscription, audio book, has an FM tuner, microphone, doubles as a portable 2GB flash drive, comes with an armband that's great for working out, has above-average earbuds, and looks in general pretty slick.
When compared with a $200 2GB iPod Nano, this is an exceptional alternative. While the Nano sports a color LCD with a slicker presentation, and a rechargable Li-Ion battery, it simply does not stack up in functionality features compared to this player.
The product however is not completely without flaws--the earbuds that come with this player, while sounding better then the e1xx series, are much larger and don't fit well in my ears. The LCD also has a poor contrast ratio; while I have no problem reading it at default, it doesn't adjust very well away from default. Finally, while at a glance it's a very attractive player, and it has a very solid build feel to it, close scrutiny reveals that the player actually looks very cheaply made (though I doubt this is the case).
Overall, if you're looking for a 2GB flash player, this device and the Nano are your best options. If you are looking for a feature-packed player, or don't want to spend $200 on a Nano, this is a very good option. For people who want iTunes support, or who set style as their absolute top priority however, this product is probably not the best choice.
Pros works seamlessly with Rhapsody to go subscription music service, Rhapsody provides $80 rebate, circuit city is sellingit at $90! It is very light and quality is excellent
Cons Display is not bright enough.