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An MP3 player for podcasts--Ask the Editors

MP3 editor Jasmine France steers a podcast listener away from the Zune HD and iPod Touch.


Q: I would appreciate advice on the proper and easiest MP3 to purchase for my needs. The primary use will NOT be for music. What I need the MP3 player for is Church-related podcasts, as I enjoy listening to bible teachings from different sources. I also want to download a study bible to have available for bible study discussions.

I use a Sansa C250 and find the screen too small and difficult to find various podcasts. I have seen the iPod Touch and now I'm wondering about the Zune HD. What would be the easiest to use and yet have a reasonable price? Thank you!--Frank, via e-mail

A: Since you are really using the device only for podcasts and not much else (it sounds like maybe a little music here and there), I would not recommend something like the iPod Touch or the Zune HD. While they are easy to use, those devices are simply too feature-packed for your needs, and there's no reason you should pay for extras you're not going to use.

The most economical option for you is the SanDisk Sansa Fuze, and it handles podcasts quite well. A 4GB player, which can be found for about $50 or so, should be more than enough to suit your needs, as that will fit hundreds of podcasts with room left over for some music and maybe a couple video clips, should you choose.