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MP3 players, again

In what is becoming a yearly ritual, I’m thinking of getting a new MP3 player. My excuse is not as good as last time (namely mine had broken), as my current one is only running out of space. The problem is, I don’t really know what to get.

I’m looking for something 40gb or more. FLAC support would be nice. The obvious choice is an iPod. Since I don’t need video, I was looking for a 4th generation one, but those seem difficult to find from reputable online stores. Of course, I don’t really want to have to use iTunes (though anything would be an improvement over Creative’s MediaSource – I hate that program with a passion). I could Rockbox it, but I don’t like the loss of battery life that results with current iPod versions.

You know, I do wonder what iPods are in stock at the MSU bookstore and if I can still get a student discount. If only there were someone who could tell me that.

Another option is an iRiver. The H140 looks nice, but it’s quite expensive. Perhaps I can console myself with the fact that I can probably sell my Zen Touch for $100+. Rockbox supports it, which would give me FLAC support. It seems hard to find online, though.

Speaking of digital music, my entire collection can be browsed here. I can’t imagine anyone will want to look at it, but I’m learning Perl and it was a useful exercise for that.

Categories: Music, Tech
  1. July 23, 2006 at 10:26 pm

    Anything by Cowon is fantastic out of the box, but a little pricey. Rockbox is pretty stable on iRivers, though.

  2. July 23, 2006 at 10:31 pm

    I looked at the X5, but apparently you can’t view songs by artist or album. That’s pretty critical for me. I guess I can generate playlists for all my albums, but that’s annoying.

  3. July 25, 2006 at 9:17 am

    Can’t view songs by artist or album? What do you mean? That sounds like baseline functionality.

  4. July 25, 2006 at 6:40 pm

    That’s what I thought, but this is what CNet’s review says:

    Playing music on the X5 is similar to watching movies; you either navigate to the Music directory to find your tunes, or you can access a playlist. The iAudio supports MP3, OGG, ASF, the lossless FLAC format, WAV, and protected WMA files, including Janus subscription-based downloads; you can also create your own on-the-fly playlist directly on the player.Not bad but you can’t browse your tunes by artist, album, or genre–a critical omission, especially if you’re dealing with, say, 10GB or more of music.

  5. July 26, 2006 at 11:47 am

    I talked to Abou and ffanatic last night about it (they both own one), and I finally understood what you said. To be honest, it’s a feature I’ve never thought about—I play music on my Rockboxed iRiver like I play music on my computer, namely by browsing to the folder and playing it.

  6. July 26, 2006 at 7:51 pm

    I’ve grown attached to being able to scan through the albums I have without going through the artist first (which is how my library is organized).

    In any case, they’re too expensive. I’m this close to breaking down and buying a refurbished iPod from Apple ($280 for 60 gb). I’m going to dig for a decent price on an iRiver first, though.

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