Creative Zen Mozaic review: Creative Zen Mozaic

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Typical Price: $99.95
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3.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

1.5 stars 1 user review

The Good Clear, powerful speaker. Heaps of features. Cheap as chips. Light but hardy design.

The Bad Photos and videos look a bit grainy. Gets dirty easily. Buttons are teeny tiny. Not Mac compatible.

The Bottom Line Decent sound and formidable features for a budget player.

7.6 Overall

Available in 2GB (AU$79.95) and 4GB (AU$99.95) versions, Creative's Mozaic is a plucky and entirely non-threatening budget player with a surprising number of features.

Design
Creative is known for producing MP3 players that are more adorable than a basket full of week-old kittens — observe its Zen V Plus. But the Mozaic, especially the pink version, hits Hello Kitty heights of cuteness.

The player is teeny tiny at 79.5x40x12.8 millimetres and weighs a feathery 43 grams. This miniaturised size and the plastic shell make it look like a toy — not a bad thing if you like your gadgets kid-like, but the Mozaic won't command the same respect that the iPod range enjoys.

As for why it's called the Mozaic, that would be on account of the multi-coloured three-by-three grid of square buttons, which kind of, sort of, resembles a mozaic of tiles. If you squint. The keys are close-set and look built for tiny pixie fingers, but they also require a bit of effort to press, meaning they're less likely to suffer from accidental touches if you have big hands.

The TFT display is 1.8 inches (4.57 centimetres) and 128x160 pixels, making it the same dimensions as the Samsung S3 's screen, but with a lower resolution.

Features
For a budget player, the Mozaic has a formidable list of features. There's an FM radio, a voice recorder, and a built-in speaker on the back. An organiser function allows you to sync your calendar, tasks and contacts with your PC.

As with previous Creative players, there are plenty of customisation options — you can play around with themes, set any image as the wallpaper and change the function of the shortcut button.

The Mozaic handles MP3, WMA and WAV audio files. Videos must be transcoded using the bundled Creative Centrale software, but this happens automatically when you transfer them to the player.

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