Headphones & Mp3 Players forum

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Buying one of the three best mp3 players out there.....help!

by whitewool / July 17, 2006 2:27 PM PDT

I'm looking at the ipod 5G 30GB, Gigabeat S, and Zen Vision: M.

I've never been heavy anti-ipod, but i'm really looking for something different. However, ipod seems to have the best options as far as accesories go. Also, I find the click wheel to be the best user interface.

I like the FM radio in the Gigabeat and ZVM, and the record option in the latter is a definite plus, but i'm not sure if it can balance out the sheer ease of use that ipod has.

Also, I have a LOT of music, and i prefer to not only have album/artist lists of music, but i want to create my own custom playlists. I'm not sure if the Gigabeat and ZVM can do that.

please help?

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by Kamokazi / July 17, 2006 2:56 PM PDT

Working at a retailer that sells both, and from a cnet comparison, the CVM definately has a significantly better screen. The contrast and overall viewability is much better. Darker videos are difficult to see on the iPod, and the colors generally don't seem as vibrant.

You can adjust to any user interface if you use it enough. And don't forget the CVM supports some additional file formats, and has an FM radio.

Accessory-wise, the only place you will really be hurting is case selection. Car mounts, FM transmitters, chargers are all available, and there are plenty of cases, just not as many.

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I like the gigabeat
by dbajpai / July 17, 2006 3:24 PM PDT

I tried all three and went for the gigabeat. Its partly because I'm forcing myself off the Ipod (which I've been using for the past couple years). I just don't want to be stuck with a lot of Itunes music that is a pain to transfer to any other player, but there is no denying that the Ipod is the easiest to use. The main reasons I didn't like the ZVM is the size. The rabid ZVM fans get mad when I say this, but I don't like the size of the ZVM (almost 1/3 heavier than the Ipod or gigabeat). Both the ZVM and Ipod are easier to scratch than the gigabeat.

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Stay with the iPod
by daveworld / July 18, 2006 1:06 AM PDT

Can't beat the click wheel, it's not overly sensitive like the Vision M. Because of the countless accessories, you can always buy a recorder or radio for the iPod if need be. It's not included because it's not heavily requested. Can't speak on the playlist of the others but creating playlist in iTunes and syncing to the iPod especially "smart playlist" is easy and fun.

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You can't beat the ZVM
by woohoo22 / July 18, 2006 4:52 AM PDT

It's easily the best product on the market. It's true, you can buy accesories that make an iPod do the same thing as the ZVM, but why pay when you can get it in the package?

For reviews on all three, check out www.dapreview.net

You'll find the ZVM is much smaller in real life than it appears on the computer screen.

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All have advantages
by maxmuscle / July 18, 2006 5:01 PM PDT

If navigation is the most important thing to you, the Ipod is the one to get. Although it's not like the navigation on the Gigabeat or Vision M are bad and using them for a few days should negate purchasing based on navigation alone. Ease of use for a lot of people means being able to pick it up and figure it out right away, based on that the Ipod and Gigabeat are a little easier but the difference is neglegable. Using the Ipod and ZVM I actually prefere the Creative even though the touch strip takes a little getting used to.
If you're looking for features and video, the ZVM is the way to go, the screen is way superior and the codex support means you don't have to spend time converting video. One other thing I like about the ZVM is that you're not stuck using one companies software or formats, it works on both OS Mac and PC.
With the Ipod you have to use Itunes for vid, and with the Gigabeat you have to use WMV files, bit of a pain on both accounts.
If you have A LOT of music the Ipod and Gigabeat do offer 60Gig models where the ZVM does not. I have over 30 Gigs of music but that's 6000 songs at 192 Mp3s.

Another very important thing to consider is, if you're using the players for Video, both the Ipod and Gigabeat battery life suck! No offence but to be a ''Video player'' you should be able to watch a whole movie.

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I Wouldn't Buy the Ipod Again
by Dsonoqua / July 18, 2006 7:31 PM PDT

I bought the Ipod Video 60G two weeks ago and am not happy with it.

Here are my reasons:

-It's very expensive. The included earphones are really cheap and of low quality. Although it does offer a huge hard drive, it lacks an FM radio tuner and battery charger adapter. These are essentials that Apple seems to have skimped out on, but they still charge $400.

-The Itunes software is not easy to use. It's not "user friendly" and is not "intuitive". The ability to get podcast content is great, but it's hard to organize your files (make playlists) with Itunes.

-The software on the actual Ipod id difficult to manuever through and is not intuitive. Music and video files appear randomly in different folders.

-Ipod Support on the Apple Website is not very clear in giving explanantions and instructions for even the most basic tasks.

I can't believe I spent $400 on this. There are better options out there. I guess I had to learn the hard way.

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Are you serious!
by ErrorMacro / July 19, 2006 4:44 PM PDT

Are you serious with this comment?

-The Itunes software is not easy to use. It's not "user friendly" and is not "intuitive". The ability to get podcast content is great, but it's hard to organize your files (make playlists) with Itunes.

Please inform us what program you find easier to use and more intuitive? If your going to make such a sweeping statement maybe you should tell us why and what's better. I happen to think much of the iPod's mainstream success is due to it's easy of use and synergy of Hardware and Software.

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I asked him to explain his statement also
by daveworld / July 21, 2006 12:39 AM PDT
In reply to: Are you serious!

I could understand if he didn't like it but to make such a statement about its ease of use, and user friendlyness just sounds a little fishy to me. I have a feeling he won't be back to explain.

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Go with the Creative Zen Vision M
by Dingus890 / July 20, 2006 4:38 AM PDT

I just had this problem about 2 weeks ago...But after owning about every Ipod and hating each one more than the last....I got the Zen vision M.....IT IS AWESOME!!4 hours of video playback on a single charge....THE SCREEN!!!!OMG THE SCREEN IS SICK!Makes the IPods look like crap when compared....My issure though was the the Zens thickness....but the screen alone makes up for that...So I say GO FOR CREATIVE.Plus they have diff. colors.and there player doesn't scratch when you flipping look at it like Ipods does...The Zen also beats out the Toshiba Gigabeat for battery life.

Get a Zen Vision M....you wont regret it...

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by gadgetman007 / July 20, 2006 6:35 AM PDT

is it comfortable in your hand and is it big and thick enough to make your pocket bulge out??

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that part is subjective
by woohoo22 / July 20, 2006 9:59 AM PDT
In reply to: ZVM??

i have relatively large hands, so the ZVM is easier to wrap around. i always feel like I'm going to drop the iPod, though many seem to be attracted to the thinness.

Bulge is all about the size of your pockets Wink

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do you think???
by gadgetman007 / July 21, 2006 4:44 AM PDT

do you think the zvm is better than the gigabeat s?
im trying to decide which one to buy but cant decide.

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ZVM is better
by woohoo22 / July 22, 2006 6:37 AM PDT
In reply to: do you think???

I ended up buying the ZVM, and I haven't looked back.

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Do you want extra battery life or extra thinness?
by maxmuscle / July 22, 2006 10:14 AM PDT
In reply to: ZVM is better

Personally, I think it's a fair trade off getting 4 to 5 hours of video battery life over a player that's a quarter inch thinner. Twice the battery life...a bit thicker.
Apple and Toshiba are chosing fasion over function! If you're a slave to fasion and want a player for it's size over it's feature list and extra battery life, the Ipod or Gigabeat S is for you. I for one, do understand that reasoning.
I would chose the better player over the cooler looking one every time!

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by whitewool / July 24, 2006 6:48 PM PDT

thanks to everyone's help. I guess I'm now leaning towards the ZVM, but there's still a few issues I have.

Firstly, I don't plan on keeping it for more than 2 years, but the option ipod has of battery replacement is nice to have in my back pocket. Anything similar for the ZVM?

Secondly, because everyone uses ipod, any problems can be fixed virtually anywhere (in addition to dealer) if I have a problem with my ZVM, where can I go?

Finally, all the reviews i've read say the ZVM comes with a mains adapter for charging (something somewhat important to me). However, creative's own website says nothing about an AC adapter. Has anyone bought a ZVM recently and have it come with an adapter?

thanks in advance.

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ZVM a great choice!
by maxmuscle / July 25, 2006 2:05 AM PDT
In reply to: thanks

I think the best thing to do is buy your ZVM at Bestbuy or somewhere you can get an extended warrenty.

That way, if anything goes wrong with it in the specified time, bettery, electronic, whatever, you just take it back to the store and get a new own, or git it fixed right there. I don't know about where you live but I know there's Futureshop or Bestbuy here in Canada where the extended warrenty through the store covers everything for 2 or 3 years.

You can go back and get a new battery for the divice even if it's not gone and chances are that since it lasts twice as long as the ipod battery, it'll last a lot longer in the first place.

The Ipod battery sounds like a good deal but that's mostly because Apple's battery life sucks and are only good for a year or so since they choose to have their players smaller than the competition by sacraficing battery life.
Furthermore, all companies will probably do a simulare thing, I sent my Iaudio X5 back because I left it plugged in continuiously (didn't know it kills the battery) and Cowan installed a new one for free! Even though it was MY fault and it wasn't covered.

I'm sure if Apple didn't offer a battery deal they would get sued a lot more for their batteries only lasting a year.
I did get an adapter with my ZVM for sure. Although, there may be a cheaper packaging with a lower price for the ZVM that does not include the adapter, make sure before you buy.
You won't regret buying the Creative over the Ipod, jsut take a look at the user ratings on both these products on CNET. Good luck!

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