The Microsoft Zune, with its intuitive interface and solid playback performance, will please most users. But lukewarm format support and the cool but limited Wi-Fi capability will have advanced users seeking more. The Zune is a very good start, though.
Basically, the 2015 iPod got a brain transplant to keep it chugging along. Everything else about it remains unchanged making it an easy swap out for businesses that currently rely on the iPod, but a hard sell for most people.
The Mighty Vibe's audience is limited to Spotify Premium users, but it's an appealing little music player for those looking for an iPod Shuffle-like device to wear on the go and leave their phone at home.
If you hate iTunes, the SanDisk Clip Jam is the best bargain music player you can buy.
Apple's most affordable iPod is a cheap, workout-friendly option for listening to music or podcasts, but it shows its age with a reliance on iTunes syncing and lack of wireless support.
The Astell & Kern AK Jr marries classic design with class-leading sound, making it one of the best high-res players for the money.
With its aluminium body, high-quality digital audio amplifier, and ability to play lossless audio files, the Sony NWZ-Z10 is an MP3 player for the dedicated audiophile that demands top-quality sound.
The PonoPlayer is an inherently likeable portable music player that delivers excellent high-end sound, but its quirky design and lackluster battery life leave us waiting for the second generation -- or a price cut.
Proof positive that bigger isn't always better, the Archos AV700 fails to make the most of its wide-screen LCD.
The Dell DJ Ditty is a decent low-cost option, but you can get more for your money from other offerings
The new 'wire-free' Walkman sports a lighter, improved design and better waterproofing. It's set to ship in March for $99.99.
Priced competitively with similar products, the M200 is a great networked media streamer for the do-it-yourself content guru.
The Iomega ScreenPlay TV Link offers an easy way to watch digital video files without the need to hook up a computer to your TV.
The Sony Walkman NWZ-X1060 packs some excellent features, such as a vivid OLED screen, effective on-board noise-cancelling technology and truly great audio quality. But it's pricy, the small screen makes for awkward Web browsing and video playback, and, overall, it's not as slick, easy to use or as feature-packed as the iPod touch
Apple's third-generation iPod touch may lack a camera, but, offering faster performance than its predecessors and new features, like voice control, it remains the cream of the portable-media-player crop. There's really no other device out there at the moment that can match its sublime combination of superb features and ease of use
Philips' inexpensive entry into the digital radio world offers few surprises, either nice or nasty.
The Sennheiser CX 300-II Precisions are incredibly affordable and great sounding, making them one of the best sets of in-ears available.
They're not actually "unbelievably loud", but the X-mini speakers do pack some audio punch in a tiny frame.